Tuesday, April 29, 2008

It's still the 3BN.. right?

This time is full of so much.. I know I was going to have some photos but I'm choosing instead to use ones I have already..
Lost Souls
I still find it amazing my shaking hands took this photo.

Lost Souls.. I keep thinking I've lost my compass.. I'm making decisions I'm not used to dealing with.

Today I looked at a place in the Continental (still GilVille) and a couple hours later, having to still clean up & turn in the keys in South Park.. (a couple conference calls and a trip to the bank), not to mention we're still not 'moved in' or 'settled' into the one here on Main, I find myself in another flux.

I have a place. It's co-signed.. However, it will be mine. More changes to come in June. All this to enjoy the silence and the process of the thought. Quiet Writing and creation. Hopefully, a blooming of work as well.


Times like this I miss my compass. I'll be taking possession about a year & three weeks to the day. I'll have his namesake (Alexander), and Kiki to keep me company though.

EDIT: UPDATE: KEYS ARE TURNED IN.. No More "South Park" for this girl who walks/meanders downtown =)
this installment is again dedicated to BigCityPoz & perhaps to my Honorary Uncle LA & Tante Janine, who I still miss very much.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

From Hope to Main

Dear bored or semi-regular readers (all 3 of you)

Today was another weird one in the moving process. I know moving, or any big life-changing experience is supposed to be stressful, yet cathartic, sad, joyful.. whatever. I'm having the stress end mostly. It's taking way too long, and there's just too much stuff. Much too much! This coming from someone who used to move a LOT and got used to the whole process.

I used to like moving. I found it a good way to clear the clutter and clear stagnant, non-productive energy and make room for new and amazing possibilities. The thing is, I'm not the only one making the move. While I have my own tendency to want things, I don't want too many things. The things that aren't mine or 'ours' or whatever.. it's not my decision to make. So the STUFF comes with us.

I find 'stuff' gets in the way a lot though. I'm not saying I want to sell off my worldly goods and go join a convent (hee hee) but I think when the focus is on the stuff and not on other things, there's something missing. For me, I can't think straight and I get overwhelmed. Like too many choices on a menu, narrowing things down and getting it right can be difficult. I have given up the desire to be one of those "collect the whole set" or MUST HAVE that, though again, there are times even I fall into that. I'm getting off track here, but you get the idea.

We only have so many days and we're running into glitches.. elevators going out at the old place, parking gates non-functioning, street closures, work schedules (not mine, but the spouse is still having work things to deal with) and on top of it all, there are scheduling issues with the various organizations that we considered donating the big stuff rather than take it to the new place.

When all of this is done though, it will be worth it and we'll get to go back to normal hopefully, that being what "normal" is these days. Then maybe in another month I get to do it again.. Times like these, I can't help but think of George Carlin and his routine on "stuff"..

Enough from me..

installment 5: dedicated to: SkidrowScribe and Central City East bloggers. =)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

cable guy

cable guy
waiting on the cable guy er, direct tv guy this morning..

Wonder if they'll have Channel 35?

edit: unfortunately, they don't have channel 35 (city council TV) *grumble* something I'll take into consideration should I have the option to get some sort of subscriber service for myself in the future. =(

They do, however carry BBC America.. which is my guilty pleasure when I do get to watch non-network TV.

installment 4

neither here nor there, the milk isn't spoiled

ralphs milk
checking the dates of low-fat milk..

We are neither moved in or moved out.. Wednesday night at Ralphs

3rd installment

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Ruben Salazar Day & First Day of Issue Stamp!

Ruben Salazar date of issue cancellationBreaking away from the move to Main Street to take in the Ruben Salazar exhibit over on Spring St, as well be the first person to purchase my sheet of stamps and get my first day of issue cancellation.

Other events going on today, and I'm sure I'll be checking a few of them out, (it is after all, Earth Day!) I'm "DASH-ing" over to Union Station to check out the concert I heard is going on over there.

I have more everyday tasks and photos I owe people, but if you can see the sun or feel the nice breeze Downtown is getting today, I'm sure you won't blame me for putting off the photo essay another day. =)

Ruben Salazar Day

LA Times Ruben Salazar is remembered with day commemorating his life and the USPS stamp unveiling.

Ruben Salazar remembered (LA Times)

You'll see many articles and news coverage today about his life and legacy to the city and people of Los Angeles. Being new here myself, I still encourage folks who have heard it before to pay attention.

It's people like Salazar who worked to make the world better in their own way, and there are people today you might recognize yourself, doing the same good things.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

stay tuned.. watch this space..

something..something Downtown!

So since I was thinking to post something about it,and it's not a one day thing, I plan to do some kind of photo essay or series "a la Bert Green" maybe, of the move to Main Street.. the entire process might take 1-2 weeks.. so a 'PotD' might be in order.. or maybe a brief description with vague images. I haven't decided yet, or perhaps a mix of both.

so yeah, stay tuned.. all 2 or 3 of you that read this thing. ;P

EDIT: a little cat nap
00 moving nap
Alexander knows something is up.. so he chews on the moving boxes to make sure they are properly marked and waits it out. He had a long wait when this photo was taken on the 14th of April. =)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Royal Claytons re-visited..

bbq tenderloin sandwich paired with sweet potato fries $12.

short end: good stuff!
long story:

I was out and about walking the afternoon and around 630 or so I realized I was feeling rather woozy and out of sorts. I called the spouse and asked him when I ate last, (because honestly I couldn't recall) and he reminded me it was around Noon. Well no wonder!

There was no way I was going to make it all the way back from where I was (which happened to be.. *shock!* the Toy Lofts) over near the far end of the Arts District not the Industrial District as some folks might call it.. I mean, what is that? Industrial District? That sounds more like Vernon to me, but what do I know? OK, I'm getting off track!

Anyway, I had just finished getting water but that wasn't doing the trick, so I figured some food would help. So here I found myself in front of Royal Claytons. I was wanting to come back here and eat because the place recently got some bad rap that I didn't think it deserved, not entirely. So here was my chance!

Technically this is the third time I visited here, the 2nd I really didn't have food so much as visit, but the first time I had the Cobb salad which was great! The second time was for Cpt Andy Smith's going away party.. and that was a short visit. The sodas were excellent as was the pizza I heard. =)

So then last Saturday I guess some folks went and had a bad experience.. a horrible one you'd think by the level of sarcasm they reserved for this place. I won't discount their bad experience but it seems a bit reactionary.. Service in any place can be spotty based on who is or isn't working that day. One doesn't necessary know the conditions that the kitchen and wait staff are under necessarily.. that given, the service and food should be somewhat regular..

I don't expect much in the service category, especially if there is only one person running the place. The food on the other hand should be alright to good to excellent. I wouldn't go to someplace like Applebee's and expect good food for instance. If on the other hand, I'm going someplace that has a chef on staff maybe it's to be expected the food turn out hot and edible.

As for me, this was the case. I got seated rather promptly with little to no wait (if you call waiting for a minute while the bar staff served another customer then came to seat me).

As far as seating it wasn't too busy and I had a choice of seating options. I sat I ordered a diet coke (I got a water almost immediately) and then looked over the menu. They have a huge selection. I was trying to find something energizing and not too heavy. I wanted to have protein but not pass out on the way back to South Park, which was a considerable walk.

I opted for the bbq tenderloin as you see above.. OMG too much food! The sandwich was piping hot and the sauce sweet and with the jalapeƱo peppers a nice tangy kick to the sauce. The sweet potato fries I opted for (you can get your choice of regular fries or salad or something else, I think) were so good! The server/bartender served it up with ketchup but I gushed to her that the fries really didn't need it. They were so good!!

I couldn't finish the fries although I tried, and against better judgment I took some home with me.. They were correct in that they lose their crispness when reheated, but the flavor is still there!

My advice is maybe share the sweet potato fries with a friend rather than bring them home to reheat.

I didn't have room for dessert but I hear they have excellent desserts. They have them listed on the menu, however you should probably ask the server what desserts they *do* have because they change sometimes daily.. so something might be gone or just not available that day. No worries, with stuff like "cookies & milk," cheesecake and "red velvet cake" making appearances, I'm sure there is something!

bbq tenderloin sandwich $12 and with diet coke & tax came to $15.70 plus tip
sandwiches run in the $10- $14 range, there's various salads, pastas, pizza, fish and pub fare as well.

Royal Claytons is located in the Arts District at Toy Factory Lofts:
1855 Industrial Street
Los Angeles, CA 90021

Sunday, April 13, 2008

meandering night & day

Friday night I meandered on my own.. checked out the LA vs War firehouse (but didn't go in..lots of action going on though!) and rode around, took a couple shots, including one of my fave buildings in the Arts District.

space for rent.. but how much? ;)

recently ubiquitous Obama "Hope" seen around town.. made more interesting (IMHO) by the streetlight and shadows.



Today was the "LA Bike Meander" over at the Toy Lofts in the recently expanded Arts District, so before I passed out from heat exhaustion, I met up with folks and had a quick ride to Nokia & back..

new paint is going up in a couple places around the Arts District including what looks like a contract job over on Mateo.

0413 Meander
Here's today's crew of meanders (we're a small group today.. 4 of us) making the turn back onto Olympic and back toward the Toy Lofts. It was about an hour and then some of us checked out the LA River Bridges tour going on today and some of us (that's me) just went home to recover after a quick stop-off for iced tea. ;)


03/23 meander00
Here we go.. Sunday Meander =P

April Art Walk (or maybe in some cases: 50 bottles of beer on the sidewalk)

I just want to preface this by saying not everyone was drinking, and yes, I do imbibe myself,(not when I'm 'working') but I do enjoy a glass now & again and maybe some good microbrews.. so with that prefaced... my little comentary on the larger number of folks drinking at Art Walk..

0410artwalk00Temporary gallery space at the Rowan Lofts (open during part of art walk but not associated with art walk). This photo has nothing to do with my post, btw.. just thought it a good photo.

Thursday found me at the April Art Walk. I didn't see a lot, but I did get around and basically spent most of the night looking inward to the galleries. So many people! Art Walk had many more people than usual,(and Art Walk is usually pretty busy). However, this night there were so many people in for all the different goings-on by 9pm or so it was easy to see that these new folks were drinking and clogging the doors and sidewalks. So much though, that it kind of put a damper on my good mood.

I'm glad folks are coming downtown, and I'm glad they're attending Art Walk. I just wish they didn't drink so damn much! I wish if they did, that they would just have some sort of dignity and respect the rules that have been set up to not only protect them from getting arrested for open containers, but they would also respect the rights of the gallery owners to not have drunk gallery patrons.

Wine is for imbibing, not for getting shit-faced drunk. I think there's a difference in there somewhere. Your mother isn't here to tell you your limits, it's your job to know when to stop.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

arts district sunset


After a day of being out & about (and technically still out and about as I'm warming my hands on a cup of cafe au lait over at Banquette as I write wrote this) I got treated to this lovely sunset as seen from just outside the Toy Lofts.

I had dinner at Royal Claytons where the Cobb Salad was pretty darn good (mmm bacon!) and the dessert rather scarce (must try coming here for lunch when the Red Velvet Cake is still available!), but that bodes well for the yumminess factor,no? I would have liked to have spent more time here so I guess it'll be something to look forward to another time.

It's all good I guess and despite any complaints I might have about the fading light, it was an alright day. I need to learn to appreciate the moments I get a little more, rather like this beautiful sunset. It really was lovely.

Now I need to finish my coffee and warm my hands back up. Thanks for reading and letting me go on. I really do babble too much, I guess so thanks for your patience. =)

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

busy weekend! busy week!

What can I say, it's been a busy weekend, and it's going to get even busier! (which is good for good reasons!)

This past Saturday was the Cherry Blossom Festival in Little Tokyo (which I attended briefly before heading out to Anaheim,CA). We all next headed over to the Block at Orange,where we had a nice & very filling meal at Koji's with friends (there were 7 of us) for shabu shabu, and a special treat to get to see our friend Kimmie who was visiting home from out of state for a couple days.

Happy belated bday to Kimmie-cat, who doesn't read this anyway. =)

Sunday found me on a 6 hour bus ride through kitsch-y Los Angeles thanks to the LAST EVER Charles Phoenix "Disneyland Tour of Downtown Los Angeles." It was not so much a tour of "LA as Disneyland", but more like a historical romp through town with a very brave & intrepid travel guide, (he was wearing Mickey ears and carrying a bullhorn which he wasn't afraid to use!) I would have loved to have taken this tour when we first moved to Downtown LA, but alas I would say that this would be a great treat for the out-of-towner's and new to Downtown folks, (assuming the tour was to continue).

More on that later.. I got a write-up to do on it and TONS of pictures to edit or upload or both. Just thinking about all those photos wears me out! LOL

This coming Thursday is the Downtown LA Art Walk & Comedy Walk.. not to mention a couple other treats in store, including a future move to the Historic Core,(good thing I didn't change the name of my blog!).

Today was an alright day, and not just because there's a new place for hot-wings in town.. I feel like there's been a small movement forward, not just for myself but for others around me. Kimmie is a good example and I'll just leave it at that. =)

Friday, April 04, 2008

Skid Row Watch Walk..

First Wednesday Every Month!
I just made it in time to go on the Skid Row Watch Walk with community activists and our LAPD this past week. I almost didn't make it because I got confused about what street to go to and I usually have one or two friends walking over there with me.

I did find the location (Midnight Mission at 6th & San Pedro) as I was only a block away, and I always seem to find a nice person to ask for directions. I've been lucky in that for such a rough and desperate area that Skid Row can be, there are many decent folks that are there, that are willing to interact and reach out. Those scared of going to such an event, it really is ok. If you've never been in a community that makes you uncomfortable or puts you out of your element, then you really haven't left your comfort zone.


Me, I don't like walking out of skid row at night by myself. I've never had to do that yet. I'm very grateful to those kind souls who have either walked with me, or, like this last time, given me a lift. =) Thank you!