’11 January

Happy New Year! And it’s gon’na be a good one!!

Happy Birthday Chris! …

January 29

Happy Birthday Chris! Alicia put on a Major Event up at the Odyssey in celebration of Chris’s Big EIGHT OHHH. It was a surprise party with 50 or so of their nearest and dearest.

I was out today…

January 28

I was out today doing chores (tick! tick!) which led me to a walk to the post office and I passed by the Santa Monica College Broad Stage. It’s less than a mile from my house, an easy walk, and I’ve yet to see a show here. Got to fix that soon!

Movies! This is…

January 27

Movies! This is the best time of year for movies since the Oscar nominees are re-released, art house theaters offer programs of the nominated short subjects, documentaries, foreign language films, and all your pals in the biz have the union distributions of the nominations on dvd.

Of the 10 Best Picture nominations (and what do we think of 10 instead of 5?) I haven’t yet seen Black Swan and Inception.

The eight that I did see are all really pretty good. Pretty good. Mike Leigh’s Another Year was fantastic but not on the list. None of them are as strong to me as last year’s Hurt Locker. You really do want to see that one. The documentry Restrepo has plenty of Hurt Locker in it though, for real, making me dizzy from the handheld camera unfortunately.

And for some delicious icing we have Film Festival season.

This mural on the…

January 26

This mural on the ‘banks’ of the Los Angeles River goes on for a mile, telling the story of LA from dinosaurs to the early 1950s. Charlene and I enjoyed the stroll together.

The start is at the corner of Burbank Blvd and Coldwater Canyon bordering Los Angeles Valley College in the San Fernando Valley. It’s very cool and easy – stop by if you get a chance, it’s a why-not? kind of outing.

How cute. .Lilly in…

January 25

How cute. .Lilly in her new driver-mobile, coming out of the garage, off to pick up Kaitlin at school. See you!

That’s in Lilly’s vocabulary. She says ‘bye, see you!’ whenever someone leaves the house, or goes upstairs for that matter.

Bonnie’s been working on…

January 20

Bonnie’s been working on getting a trust together for me which requires thoughts about those end-of-life issues best left for later. What it makes me think about is getting a cat. As you must be bored of hearing by now. .I’ll get a cat – the upside of infirmity.

I’ve had a busy few days with no pictures. Oh no. Salsa, walk w/Sharon, Nancy came over for dinner, I got a roof built for the laundry – then I’m leaving Friday for a long weekend in SF, photos for sure. .is the plan. No time yet for a cat.

ichcb.

Last week Lilly was…

January 18

Last week Lilly was feeling unwell but today, even with a double ear infection and a runny nose, she is little Miss Charming.

Another day at the…

January 16

Another day at the beach! It’s been quite warm recently and it was packed down here with folks looking to take in the sun and the sea. Packed.

Ken and I walked for a few hours, ate a few times, enjoyed a cocktail here and there…

It’s me and Bobby…

January 15

It’s me and Bobby Z, at one of the dozen sunglasses stands in Venice Beach. Hello old friend! I did not mean to cut myself out of the picture – since I do this so often you’d think I could get it right.

When Bob comes down…

When Bob comes down he stays at Carl and Lynn’s place, two blocks from the endless entertainment of Venice Beach.

Carl gave me his…

January 14

Carl gave me his (two!) Laker tickets!! I invited Burt who had never yet been to the Staples Center. We ate dinner at one of the hot spots in LA Live and enjoyed ourselves entirely.

An accommodating stranger took this photo with Burt’s camera.

Our singer for the…

Our singer for the Star Spangled Banner. Other people seemed to know him.

(Burt tells me: “The guy singing the national anthem was John Schneider…the actor from the old Dukes of Hazzard tv show.”)

I love this scene…

I love this scene which happens in every timeout. Zen Coach Jackson moves to the court and stands, isolated in his own cone of silence and charts out the plays. No one No one speaks to him or he to another soul.

Sharon, Brigitte, and I…

January 13

Sharon, Brigitte, and I went to the Self-Realization Fellowship Lake Shrine for a nice stroll and some photo-photo.

The gardens are quite…

The gardens are quite fabulous and we always enjoy admiring the plantings and wondering if this or that would be happy in our own yards.

Here’s some text I…

Here’s some text I copied from the Lake Shrine website about how the Fellowship came to buy this property in the mid-1940s:

(…the owner had written to Parmahansa Yogananda offering to sell him the property based on a dream from the night before.) “Rather than waiting until the letter arrived the man telephoned Self-Realization Fellowship headquarters later that morning. Coming to the phone, Paramahansa Yogananda said–before the man could introduce himself or explain his purpose—“You have some property for sale, don’t you? When can I see it?”

“But you haven’t received my letter,” the man replied.

“The letter will come tomorrow morning,” the Guru told him. “Can we meet tomorrow afternoon?”

Paramahansaji visited the lake and its grounds the next day, and immediately began making plans for the open-air shrine of all religions he wished to establish in Los Angeles. Shortly thereafter, with the help of several generous benefactors, he was able to acquire the property, and the Lake Shrine was born.”

Recently I re-read Parmahansa…

Recently I re-read Parmahansa Yogananda’s Autobiography of a Yogi. It was all quite fantastical and did not tempt me to sign-up. But then as far as I know no one has been killed in the name of the Self-Realization Fellowship.

This pair was particularly ‘active’ today, chasing each other, making grand displays, generally acting as if it was Spring already.

The orange tree is…

January 12

The orange tree is doing the same thing. I’ve got to get these babies picked and given away!

Nancy and I saw Another Year this evening. I liked it a Lot. As usual you can read the Roger Ebert review that expresses my feelings rather precisely.

Today I helped Lynn…

January 10

Today I helped Lynn get her website together and it was good fun, and satisfying too because Lynn was committed and did all her parts right on time.

Susie and Elizabeth and…

January 9

Susie and Elizabeth and I took an excellent morning walk from Susie’s house down to the beach, along the boardwalk, and back by way of this blocks-long city park.

I totally could not…

I totally could not see these guys with my eye they were so small and so far away but no one could miss knowing they are there since they are so loud. I just shot up in the direction of them and pulled this out of the frame.

It seems there are flocks of parrots around Hermosa Beach much like the Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill.

Then I went with…

Then I went with Ken and Bill to see True Grit and eat dinner at The Odyssey. The waiter took this picture on the veranda – I had the flash set at ‘fill’ which produced a very entertaining result.

Happy Birthday Elizabeth! …

Happy Birthday Elizabeth! Elizabeth and her family and friends.

Sooo many college professors. Makes me want to read a book. We’ve got two at Harvard, plus Carl and Lynn.

And more. Two…

And more. Two at UC Santa Barbara and a law school student. More degrees than you can shake a stick at. And delightful folks all.

We closed down the…

We closed down the place. We stayed so late the tram was done and they had to call a van to come pick us up.

Thank You Les and Happy Birthday Elizabeth, what a Treat!

They’ve redone their decor…

January 7

They’ve redone their decor over at Drago. They’ve reduced the number of items on offer too. But the food is still wonderful and it was fun to see my ex-boss again.

Ann, Marija, and I…

January 6

Ann, Marija, and I met for lunch at the sushi bar in the north valley. Ladies, I failed to notice that your eyes were closed Marija, and I had you out of focus Ann…but YUM on the food.

Around 4 I left…

Around 4 I left the valley and drove downtown to pick up Elizabeth, visiting from Boston, and we did a little downtown LA turn.

An organist was playing at the Cathedral and we had his concert all to ourselves. They close the building at 6pm and by 5:45 we were the only ones there. What an excellent treat.

After visiting the Cathedral we walked through the Music Center complex, through Disney Hall and the Disney garden…

…and it was Free…

…and it was Free Thursday at MOCA which is always a delight. At the moment a room is devoted to Franz Kline’s work (a MOCA favorite of mine) and wow, a guy here who so clearly belongs.

We had dinner at Philippe’s. Oh yeah. Elizabeth was particularly pleased as she had never seen any of these places. Welcome to LA!

I’m out with Sharon…

January 5

I’m out with Sharon for The Beach Walk where, half-way through snacks and beverages await. We walk-walk-walk, nice pace, no stopping. . .except for the occasional photo of course.

At the end of…

At the end of Pico Blvd., the two snappy hotels on the boardwalk, Shutters and Casa del Mar.

Play Date! I…

January 4

Play Date! I did not set-up this shot. The moms are chatting peacefully…

…the kids are chatting…

…the kids are chatting among themselves. A couple hours later and a few more kids in play – I should have taken an after picture to go with this before!

I could mention the six perfect homemade oatmeal-walnut-chocolate chip cookies I ate. .YUM. .ahh, the memory.

I saw Rabbit Hole…

January 3

I saw Rabbit Hole today with Nancy. It was very well done – I wept from moment first to moment last. You’ll want to bring Plenty of tissue.

It was Celina’s birthday too – the Shutmans drove out west and I got to go to dinner with the fam. Lucky me!

Carl and Lynn and…

January 2

Carl and Lynn and I shared our respective trip-to-India pictures today. Their two weeks were fanTAStic and they had wonderful photos.

My trip was in 2002 with my first digital camera when I didn’t have the website idea down in its current form and the pictures are pathetic. Pathetic I tell you. 2011 Resolution! Redo those photos!!

(internet pic)

Happy New Year! …

January 1

Happy New Year! After Marsha and Tom’s party last night I slept over at Sharon’s. And then Sharon cooked. For breakfast we had welcome coffee of course, a great egg bake, fresh biscuits, and homemade jam, and watched the Rose Parade.

Nancy came over and made salad, and we ate that, yum, and Sharon’s bean and ham bone soup and fresh cornbread.

Ahh, good food and fine friends, what a wonderful way to welcome the New Year.

I stopped by at…

I stopped by at Ann’s to see Josh and Carrie and fabulous little Clara who are all returning to Belgium tomorrow, to Josh’s posting with NATO. It was lovely to see them!

(I do have a special attachment to Josh and Carrie because I went to their utterly spectacular Southern Belle wedding in Atlanta back in 2007.)

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