Monday, June 11, 2018

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Street Art: Sacramento


Monday, March 19, 2018


Eighteen years ago, I read Dave Eggers' tongue-in-cheek titled memoir, A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. Two days ago, I saw Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda's musical, and that book title from long ago kept popping into my head. This piece of theater is IN FACT, a heartbreaking work of staggering genius. The performances were astounding, the detail of the single set was impressive, the acting, singing, and dancing were all top-notch, but what I kept (and keep) coming back to is the intellect that conceived of and so fantastically depicted the early history of America, from the Revolutionary War to the Constitution, through rap music, hip-hop dance, and the use of a multi-cultural cast. Lin Manuel Miranda won a MacArthur 'Genius Grant' in 2015, I think he should have won two.
The single-piece set.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Silver Lake

I stayed in Silver Lake during my week in Los Angeles, it's known as a 'hipster' area but I was running around greater L.A. so much that I didn't have much time to really explore the neighborhood. On my last morning before heading to the airport, I did have a fantastic breakfast at LAMILL Coffee in Sliver Lake and saw this on a nearby window; it was a fitting conclusion to my week in La La Land.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Santa Barbara

Today I went to Santa Barbara, a place I'd never been before, to visit an old friend and see a new place. Santa Barbara is gorgeous. It has a laid back vibe and and an "old California" look. My friend Alison took me to the courthouse which was built in 1929 in the Spanish Colonial style, and we climbed to the top of the clock tower to get a better view of the area.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Taco Tour

What better way to spend one's birthday than eating tacos with strangers in Culver City? None, I tell ya. So off I went to meet William, the taco tour guide at Tito's Tacos. Tito's has been serving the quintessential American taco since 1958: hard shell, cheddar cheese (a product unknown south of the border), and iceberg lettuce. My fellow taco-tourists were Eddy and Alexandra from Cambridge, Mass. and Abi from New Zealand by way of Oman, and we all agreed that Tito's tacos were tasty, but we were just getting started.

Our next stop was Tacos Tamix, a taco truck that specializes in tacos al pastor, which is sliced pork roasted on a vertical spit and shaved off directly into a tortilla. These were true Mexican tacos and they were fantastic.

Our third stop was Kogi, which Roy Choi, a Korean-American started as a food truck. Choi is credited with starting the gourmet food truck craze which is prevalent in L.A. and Seattle; Portland has taken it to a new level with an entire community of food trucks downtown. We had short-rib tacos with a fresh kimchi slaw - fabulous.

Last stop was B├Ąco which serves... well, not actual tacos but meat and slaw wrapped in a flatbread very much like naan, which in its own way is kind of taco-esque, if not technically a taco. We had green herb chicken with purple cabbage, lemon vinaigrette, thyme, and spiced yogurt. They were fancy and delicious, and a great way to end the evening with fellow travelers. I enjoyed the fact that it wasn't until I was driving back to Silver Lake that I remembered it was my birthday.
Abi, William, Alexandra, and Eddy

Thursday, January 25, 2018

The House of the Mouse

Before yesterday, I'd been to Disneyland three times, once when I was a child, once when I was an adolescent, and once in my 20s. Yesterday I went to Disneyland for the fourth and possibly last time with my pals Kirsten and Clare who drove up from San Diego. I had a great time. The rides were fun, hanging with the girls was fantastic, it was a beautiful day, and the lines weren't too long (I purposely chose a mid-week date in winter for the excursion); and while Kirsten feels the Disney Magic quite deeply (she has bought an annual pass for years; her most recent trip before yesterday was last Saturday), I was a little less touched by the fairy dust. I had a great time and would hate to give the impression that it was anything but a really wonderful day, but let's just say I'm never going to reach the fandom of this lady:

Guardians of the Galaxy ride. After the first DROP,
I screamed and clutched Kirsten's arm like someone in a plane that just lost its engines.
It was terrifying; we went on it twice.