Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas on Main

wreath on the Old Bank at 4th and Main..

Merry Christmas Downtown Neighbors!

Haven't been home the last couple weeks.. Missed Art Walk and any number of things going on in the neighborhood.. and plan to spend Christmas with a dear old friend from out of town... but otherwise enjoying the holidays downtown..

When it seems like the city has closed down for the holiday take a minute to enjoy the silence.. or at least a hot toddy at Pete's I guess. I would be surprised if they were closed.

OtoH today is your last chance to enjoy holiday shopping downtown as many businesses will be closed for the next couple days..

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving Downtown! =)

I haven't posted much as I haven't spent a lot of time out & about this month. Instead I spent a couple days in Florida to celebrate my mom's birthday at our DVC home resort, Kidani Village..

The rest of this month I've been attempting NaNoWriMo; 50,000 words in 30 days.. or in my case 25 days.. I'm several thousand words behind at this point.. but I have a few more days. =)

I'm very out of practice for writing fiction. I was thinking contributing to a news blog would give me practice, but it's a different sort of writing altogether. It makes me wonder how Carl Hiassen does it.. (as I guess he still writes for the Miami Herald).

I'm definitely considering taking a writing or extension course early next year. My writing needs help!

Last weekend, the 20th I took another day off from writing to attempt the 2010 "Great Los Angeles Walk" This year they were back to Wilshire Blvd. and since we were unable to really attend it (for long) the first time around 4 years ago, I made sure to make it rain or shine..

Meeting up at Pershing Square (Sean tells me it's 7/10 mi from 4th & Main to One Wilshire) about 100 of us set out from One Wilshire and walked to the Ocean.. Well, I made it to 20th & Wilshire in Santa Monica.. that's when a kind-hearted soul named Michael offered me a lift to Border Grill =)

So Sean tells me that's 14.35 miles of the 16 miles to the beach (or 15mi total from our building.. LOL!). I guess that's not bad for not walking near at all this last year. I am a bit disappointed in myself but I knew if I let the big group get ahead of me by much near the end I would just keep getting behind..

one of my group shots..

my Great LA Walk 2010 flickr set

Today we're taking it easy, watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, calling family and later we'll head to Pete's Cafe for T-day dinner and I've got what's left of our Cajun Kringle to eat for dessert later.. Ordered from New Orleans it's really yummy!

Cajun Kringle

Eventually we'll be braving those "so early it's late" Black Friday specials.. but for now, wishing everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving.. however you spend it.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Tweet the Vote!

Today all over California (and elsewhere around the country) people are queuing up at their polling places to vote their choice for Governor, LT Gov., Senator and other representatives.. Foursquare is in on it with a "I voted 2010" badge..


If you already voted by mail (which is what I did) you can still get in on the badge by giving a shout-out to your friends.. "I voted" and even if you don't get that sticker that others may be getting by going to their polling place, you got your badge. =)

However you vote.. just make sure you do! Let your voice and your vote be counted!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Art Shows Closing at 5th and Main

Tomorrow spotlights two separate exhibitions closing at the home of Gallery Row, 5th and Main. Bert Green Fine Art (BGFA) hosted artists Jeff Gillette and Scott Horsley. Edgar Varela Fine Art (EVFA) whose gallery fills the back space at 5th and Main, hosted Ivan Limas. I was lucky to speak to all three artists at their respective openings last month on September 22nd.

Jeff Gillette

Jeff Gillette
Gillette standing in front of his piece "Charpi" (2010)

Jeff Gillette got inspiration for his "Slumscape" series from his experiences in the Peace Corps in the late 80s. Having spent two years in Calcutta, India seeing the immense filth of the slums he found a beauty in the "cacophony of debris" and compared it to modern art sculptures. Since then he's made several trips back to India and Nepal getting new ideas and material for his series, which he first painted in 1995.

Gillette's new series of "Slumscapes" might have people questioning. "What's with the Mickey Mouse?" Noting that many, if not all of his current "Slumscape" works incorporate the mouse icon in some way or another.

"No one likes looking at this (stuff)." He says "They hate it, they try to go around it. This is like an access to it. It forces people to indulge. People will be like "look it's Mickey!" and they'll be drawn into it.. and what are you getting drawn into? It's a toilet."

disneyland sign: "Dread/Coca" (2010)
"Dread/Coca" (2010) Jeff Gillette acrylic and collage on canvas $2,000

"Everyone loves Mickey Mouse," Gillette insists. Using the Disney icon as an access point to his art, it brings social awareness and allows the art-goer to see everything. He further explains that while people don't like to look at slums and the filth and garbage, they will look at Mickey. "It allows them an access point to engage."

Scott Horsley

Scott Horsley w/ "Recreation" View I and View II
Horsley with Recreation I and Recreation II

Horsley, who grew up in New York,received his graduate degree at UC San Diego. He met Bert Green at a show a few years ago and has been in a few of his shows including the LA Art Show.

Horsley now spends most of his time at the University of Florida at Gainsville where he teaches.

Having got his start with painting, he found it became busy and he's cut down to the basics. "Paper and pencil appeal to me," he says, expressing the purity and raw nature of graphite on paper. His graphite on Luxe paper drawings explore the relationship of sex and the absurd, how fear and ecstasy intermingle when faced with death or tragedy. His current series are full of "ecstatic joy in the grip of a sinking ship."

Many of his works seem to book-end each other, whether it's "The Expression of Truckliness" a duel piece about the concept of what truck-ownership might envision.. or "Recreation" a somewhat startling image of what seems to be duel hangings were actually contrasting images Horsley happened upon in the news. He explains on one page was an image of several soldiers witnessing an execution in Kabul, and on the opposite page, a group of people watching Patriots cheerleader tryouts. In both images the heads were cut out of the photos, "It was like the exact same photograph," said Horsley. "The images were so similar and so diametrically opposed, that like 'death' and that ecstatic sexual moment so those things back to back.. I couldn't believe it that they existed together."

Again, the shows end tomorrow, the 30th of October, which will culminate in an artist's talk with Jeff Gillette at 4pm. Don't miss it as Gillette will be sharing slides from his travels to the various slums that are the inspiration for his art.

Bert Green Fine Art
102 West 5th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90013 ·

EVFA presents Ivan Limas "Free to Behave"

Ivan Limas
Ivan Limas at his show's opening last month.

In the EVFA Gallery, Ivan Limas filled the room with his vibrant project-based works. Limas, who lives and works in the Santa Fe Art Colony, is a life-long Angeleno. He spent his childhood growing up in various parts of LA like Compton (and later La Merada) and says it had a big impact on his life. While some of the kids he grew up with were into the gang culture or graffiti art, he stuck to drawing comics, but his drawings eventually moved him to explore ideas in culture, and experience.

"A lot of my work is about defiance, exploration and self-perception.. cultural perception."

Immersed in the comic culture in his youth, he was surrounded by various subcultures whether it was anime, the machismo of Mexican-American, gang culture or graffiti art. He brings his personal experiences to bare. He'll get many ideas from his walks around LA or the conversations he hears. He said a lot of his work might be about the polarities of those sub-cultures and understanding those persona.

Most of his work in this show are oil on canvas paintings. He explained how he learns from his environment, often "doodling" while listening to lectures or conversations when growing up. He used this technique for several of his paintings in his current show. When going to a location, he would create several drawings based on the sounds and voices he hears and then photographing the environment. "I let the environment affect me," he says. He creates the larger oil paintings based on the drawings he created earlier at the project's location.

His work varies from video or mixed media sculpture, or performance pieces where he wrapped himself up in bandannas.

"Bandannas to me are like these mini flags.."

He talks about visual signifiers, like those communicated through items like a common bandanna. The bandanna having many meanings in different cultures, and he thinks about where the bandanna originated from, whether it's from Mexico,Spain or somewhere else. His hope is to "contextualize it into contemporary dialogue.". He has created a series of 3 bandannas with ironed transfers that might hint different places to different people. Discussion of the pieces range from the language expressed in the wearing of bandannas, the color significance in gang culture, or any number of things.

He wants his work to be available to everyone, not restricted to any one group. Bringing the idea of an item that's not necessarily considered art and having people think about it in a new way, or bring their own experience to the interpretation. Whether it's a synthetic ostrich skin-encased vacuum cleaner or a video installation of Ivan cutting off his own tongue.

His show also wraps on 30 October, when Limas is scheduled to have an artist talk in the EVFA gallery where he will discuss more about his history and background. It's possible he may bring up his earlier work on a comic book that he wrote and illustrated for use as his college thesis. While the work never got published, "It made me realize I wanted to go from a painter to multimedia."


Thursday, October 21, 2010

DTLA Car-less, the MetroLink Way

I finally got around to editing a short clip from our return into Downtown LA late last month as we cross over the LA River and into the rail-yards of downtown.. I suggest turning down the volume as the iMovie 'theme' music wears on the nerves after a minute

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Portofino Cucina Italiana is Open (again) !

The new Italian restaurant opened on the seemingly cursed corner of 5th and Main a little over a month ago. As happy as everyone was the place was now home to a well-meaning, determined restaurateur Diego Ortoli , it closed to as much sadness as they battled plumbing issues.

Diego thought it best to close while he worked out the plumbing fix. About three weeks later, he opened back up this past Monday. The food is just as good (if not even better than we recall).

One of my neighbors had gushed about the gnocci, so I knew exactly what I had to order.. Gnocchi piccanti

Gnocchi piccanti
from the menu: "Home made potato dumplings with broccoli, roasted garlic, jalapeno and imported romano cheese"

While I didn't notice broccoli so much, the roasted garlic was deliciously prevalent and the jalapeno added just the touch to make a cheesy, spicy, garlic-y goodness. I was wishing I had a spoon so I could scrape every last drop of the sauce from the bowl. Seriously.

The spouse ordered the Scaloppine di manzo alla Piemontese:
Scaloppine di manzo alla Piemontese
from the menu: "Thinly sliced Sirloin steak sautéed with garlic, parsley, roasted bell peppers and basil in a white wine sauce, topped with fresh mozzarella, served with roasted rosemary potatoes and vegetables"

I am in love with these rosemary potatoes!! I swiped a couple from Sean so I could use them to mop up the last bits of my gnocchi sauce. The steak was tender, and IMHO ran a little towards sweet.. (Sean disagrees with me on the 'sweet' description, but this is why I don't do reviews usually).

Suffice to say I liked his dish enough I want to order that next time we go. Diego says he has a lot of new staff (3 weeks is a long time to go without regular work honestly) including a new chef who has over 20 years in the cruiseline business. He came out to our table and checked on us, and me not being in my "nosy blogger" mode I didn't get his name, but he seemed friendly and his food is great!

Sean wasn't wanting dessert, but I still had room to split something, so Diego surprised me with this great cinnamon-y apple cake/torte:

if you order this, try it without the chocolate first.. the cinnamon and apple is light and clean (and very filling) and I thought the chocolate murdered the cinnamon. In the words of Sean when I asked him what he thought of the cinnamon, he said "what cinnamon" but he had drenched his first bite in the chocolate drizzle.

I asked Diego if he'd be doing breakfast again and he said for now, no.. I guess there weren't enough people knowing he was open for breakfast.. so I can only hope that'll come back eventually..


Diego mentioned that he found out from his legal adviser that he can do BYOB Wine! So as long as he has "nothing to do with it," you can bring your wine bottle in a paper-bag, along with your own glasses & corkscrew and have that wine with your pasta. So all my friends whinging about "what's pasta without wine?!" you can stop whining and have your wine. =)

Just stay classy ok??? ;P

so.. you know the deal..

Portofino Cucina Italiana
464 S. Main
Los Angeles, CA 90013
Portofino Cucina Italiana"

the blogdowntown article:
Portofino Cucina Italiana Opens at 5th and Main"

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Get Ready for Autumn Lights!

Autumn Lights, an Art Walk of a different kind, will once again take over Pershing Square this weekend.

Emmeric Konrad
Emmeric in front of his work "The Horse He Rode in On"

Art Walk night, Emmeric Konrad was creating live art on canvas hung in a empty shop window of the Medallion Apartments. His painting, on a white canvas sheet started shortly after 7pm was a work in progress, as images from the 2009 "Autumn Lights" were projected onto the center of the canvas. Attendees could see him wrapping up his work titled "The Horse He Rode in On", around 1030 PM.

He was there in support of Artist/Curator Lilli Muller who was getting the word out about this year's "Autumn Lights." While the Muller produced and curated event is partially funded by the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks, Muller has put most of her own money into this event, now in its 6th year. She was hoping to drum up more support of the artistic and fund-raising kind for this year's event.

Over 70 artists and counting will be creating unique installations within Pershing Square this Saturday, September 25th. Muller says "It's going to be pretty intense."

"I want this to happen for the city and I want it to grow for next year."

"The cool thing will be that there will be more performing things going on as you are walking through it, so it's more interactive."

"There's a very eclectic music schedule," Killsonic will be opening performers, "Ruby Friedman Orchestra," as well the ukulele band "The Ooks of Hazzard" among others.

Attendees last year might recall the amazing projections on the walls of Pershing Square, digital and laser lights, black-lit art installations, and many creative pieces that were made especially for Autumn Lights by local artists.

Emmeric dropped a hint about one of the pieces you may be seeing this year: "Suzi Moon is doing a thing with women's underwear. She's tearing them apart so they look like jellyfish.. and they're black-lit."

Along with Emmeric (and aforementioned Suzi Moon), other featured artists include: Jerico Woggon, Rush Varella, DJ Vader, Flip One, Rick Mendoza, Shane Guffog, Anna Broome, and several dozen more.

With three times as many artists and performers getting involved one may wonder what next year holds for "Autumn Lights," and Lilli seems to have great visions for next year, "I'd like to create a corridor and get California Plaza and MOCA involved." Noting the Fall fund raising event at MOCA, she imagines working together and possibly doing "Autumn Lights" in cooperation with the LA Film Festival. "Creating a backdrop for events."

"All these walls, it would be really cool do something like that."

Until then, you can enjoy this year's event at Pershing Square. The event runs from 7 PM til 1 AM on September 25th. To see more detail about the event, including a list of artists and performers participating go to:

Autumn Lights LA 2010

Donations I believe are still welcome and can made by contacting Lilli Muller at:

here's my mini set from Autumn Lights 2009 which includes this:

Friday, August 27, 2010

Random LAFD

So I was meandering my way back home when I spotted an LAFD truck just off 7th & Hill Streets.. The firefighters were pulling a small ladder off the truck and headed to the sidewalk. Being the nosy person that I am (heh) I stopped to see what was up.. (I didn't smell any smoke but that doesn't mean something isn't amiss)

Apparently not much other than the ladder..

here comes the ladder..
LAFD testing?

and UP it goes!

random ladder drill

LAFD training? on just off 7th & Hill Streets

meh.. they're done.
random LAFD training?

See?? Random! =)

Broadway is looking UP!

Broadway near 6th Street is getting a fresh coat of paint..
fresh coat of paint on broadway

fresh paint

over at Payless..

Payless on Broadway

Payless on Broadway 2
applying new window treatment..

and next door they're making repairs to the storefront:
making repairs on Broadway

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

World of Color Road Show

The World of Color road show wrapped up its 4 city tour in downtown LA... Although it's nothing like the real World of Color (which is full of most awsomeness.. like the Bellagio fountains on steroids.. 200ft water cannons, fire balls and flamethrowers, along with several hundred feet of projected water screen amazingness)

Sean & I wandered over there after having dinner at Starry Kitchen last Friday.


We just got new his & her's iPhone 4s from the Glendale apple store Saturday before this, and so this was the first real test for them. Taking videos was alright but the flash seemed to over-expose the images.. and without the flash you may notice it's a bit blurry. The phone takes forever (in the sense of taking an image) to decide to shoot something..

Day time or dusk images shoot way better.. but despite the frustrations, we we gave it a go. Luckily the 10minute loop repeated itself

So here you go..


and a little bit of video:

the projected images where first abstract..

later you could see snippets of the Blue Fairy, Fantasia, Aladdin, and Sorcerer's Apprentice portion of Fantasia..

This is NOTHING like the real World of Color.. but if you haven't seen it, hopefully it makes you curious to go to the park and check it out.. FWIW I heard a few people heading off discussing how they haven't been to Disneyland in a while and "We really need to make another trip to Disneyland soon!" I guess Disney marketing accomplished their task with this one..

my complete flickr set here

Thursday, July 08, 2010

World Cup at the Down & Out

watching the match

Yesterday I wanted to watch the Germany/Spain match so headed over to The Down & Out where I met up with neighbor Sara J. and had a very peaceable time watching the match. There was a good crowd and after the first half we were able to move up to the bar to sit and watch the three screens.

It was my first time at the Down & Out and based on my experience I would definitely go back. I still got to find out what that pear cider I had was. It was alright. =)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


Babycakes NYC has been open on 6th near Los Angeles for a while now, and since I have a friend that was interested in gluten-free options, I meant to get there eventually. I had heard not-so good things about them, so it wasn't on the top of my list. Then I happened to be in the area.. so what better time?

they have quite a selection of vegan and spelt cupcakes..
I wasn't sure what to choose, so I got a carrot cupcake since the carrotcake is my favorite at "Big Man Bakes" ('compare what you know' is my default).

I also got an agave brownie, and a slice of banana bread.. the total came to about $10 for the 3 items.

carrot cupcake
carrot cupcake..
halved cupcake
you can see the bits of carrot..

The frosting was sweet.. and the carrot cupcake was rather dry and bland. The frosting didn't make up for it, but at least helped it go down.

Agave brownie
agave brownie
at 1.50 you won't feel too guilty wasting your money on one of these.. but your taste-buds might complain. Of the three items, this was the most "diet" tasting. It was small and gritty and just not tasty. I love chocolate and brownies are one of my favorite treats. From experience, I know brownies can vary from being just good to moist & tasty to sweet & decadent. IMHO, this was just nasty. I'll stick with my boxed brownie mix, thank you!

Banana Bread!
banana bread
banana bread
you can see a piece of actual banana in the bread..

This last one was my favorite of the three. It was moist and tasty. It actually tasted like banana.. I didn't like that the chunks were big enough to see (that kinda grossed me out, actually) but however they make it, it's the one I would order again if I was in the neighborhood.

Babycakes NYC
130 E 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90014
(213) 623-5555

Cupcake Update: Since I last did a cupcake post, Lot44 Coffee has closed up and is no longer a cupcake option. Pitfire Pizza hasn't had it's Aunty Em's cupcakes in ages, and so the local options are limited to Big Man Bakes and BabyCakes NYC.

Babycakes NYC is the only vegan/gluten-free/spelt option downtown, but if you, like me, are not limited by what you can ingest, Big Man Bakes is the better (if more limited) option. The carrotcake cupcakes and pumpkin spice @ Big Man Bakes are still my favorite.. I'm still hunting for a truly moist & delicious red velvet (since I can't get Aunty Em's downtown). Suggestions?

my flickr set

Friday, May 07, 2010

2010 LA Times Festival of Books


A couple weeks back we headed over to UCLA for the LA Times Festival of Books.. We were able to get in at a few of the great panels we were really wanting to hit..

Carol Burnett discussed her book This Time Together

David Shannon
2010 Featured LATfob artist David Shannon was signing his books.

Sebastian Junger
Sebastian Junger talked about his experience with the 173rd Airborne brigade in Afghanistan's Korengal Valley, featured in his new book, War

Our DTLA buddy Eric Lynxwiler was signing copies of his book Knott's Preserved

Charles Phoenix was on hand for signings too!
Charles Phoenix
Here he is with Sean after just signing my book Southern Californialand.

Father Gregory Boyle
Father Gregory Boyle, famously of his work with HomeBoy Industries, discussing stories from his book, Tattoos on the Heart (which I'll write more about in a future post).

The last panel on Sunday that we attended, was the Publishing in the "new media" panel.
Pablo Defendini, Dana Goodyear, & Wil Wheaton
This was the the Wil Wheaton panel I kept tweeting about. =) Pablo Defindini was a great addition, talking about his publishing with TOR and I still didn't figure out what Dana Goodyear was talking about.. but that's more my fault than hers I'm sure! (something about text stories that are popular in Japan).

I thought Wil Wheaton did great (I saw him as part of another panel on Social Media a previous year). He best epitomizes the role of social media and the new media publishing.. Self-publishing his stories and blog postings.

Overall it was a great Book Fest! I just wish Ray Bradbury was there.. I don't blame him though. When will the LA Times bring back the book review section?? Book Reviews are still an important part of the discussion. (otherwise why have a festival?)

My @LATfob flickr set

Sunday, April 04, 2010


Happy Easter! Happy Spring.. Speaking of new beginnings and all that..

Yesterday was a day of Firsts (actually last weekend was too.. but that's later) Since the cat woke us up around 4am, we stayed awake and had breakfast at LA Cafe on Spring. It was ok.

The real surprise came later.. we were headed out to run errands and SeanYoda recalled a place I've been wanting to go with him for a while but the timing was always off (I always seem to remember when they were closed on Sundays and often our plans don't work out otherwise). Langer's.

We went to Langer's!!!

I've eaten at Langer's a couple times while assisting in Blogging support a year or so ago. While SeanYoda reminded me he has had Langer's before (he recalled my bringing home leftovers from an event one time), he had yet to visit the location for lunch. So here we are!!

We waited to be seated.. and it helped we came in already knowing what we wanted.. (hint is in photo) It was just a matter if we were going to split an order, or get our own...

We ended up splitting of course!

#19 Pastrami w/ swiss (and slaw)
my half of the #19 Our server kindly put our halves on our own plate and I'm not sure, but think she may have given us an extra pickle..

Sean bites into his half..
Sean's 1st Visit to Langer's

We also got a side order of potato salad just in case the 1/2 wasn't enough.. (it was though as I ended up offering the remnant of my 2nd pickle half to Sean and left very full!)

One order of the #19 (pastrami w/ swiss & slaw), a side of potato salad & 2 iced teas came to $25 plus tip..

We parked at the Langer's lot at 7th & Westlake.. (and they do validate at Langer's)

Langer's Delicatessen-Restaurant
704 South Alvarado Street
Los Angeles, C.A. 90057
(213) 483-8050

HOURS: Monday - Saturday, 8am - 4pm

Langer's is the BEST pastrami sandwich in LA (if not the world..) with Canter's being 2nd... You can take the Red Line out there to MacArthur Park if you don't have a car.. and if you do have a car.. like we happened to have this Easter weekend, then you now know where to park! =)

more of my Langer's Flickr Set

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Easter Happenings

While my Easter egg hunting days are pretty much over, I don't begrudge someone else's little one a chance to have a run in the grass..

Hope Park musician

New City Church

It seems that there's going to be a bit of a festival atmosphere at Grand Hope Park (that's that green area where dogs aren't allowed despite the sculptures hinting otherwise) near the FIDM at 9th & Hope in South Park.

Next Sunday New City Church is hosting an "Easter Fest" with an Easter egg hunt, arts & craft-y stuff and the ubiquitous bounce house.

Easter falls on the 4th of April and the fest will run from 12-3pm. I don't know much else so you'll want to contact the folks at New City Church with any questions. or 213-471-2415

I'm not active in any churches at the moment so I have no personal agenda with this, just figuring with the uptick of folks with little ones, they'd want to know about this.

Our Lady of the Angels

For a less boisterous and not-so-kid-friendly way to spend Easter the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels is hosting (with advanced reservation required) an Easter Champagne Brunch.

The Champagne Brunch is after Mass and is prepared by the chefs at the Center at Cathedral Plaza.. Adults $30, Children (2-12) $20 plus tax.; For more information & reservations please call (213) 680-5271.

J Restaurant & Lounge

Can't make up your mind?? J Restaurant and Lounge will be hosting a family friendly Easter Sunday Brunch from 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM Easter Sunday at 1119 S. Olive Street in South Park. Brunch will be served on the outdoor patio and an Easter egg hunt will be held for the kids.

There's plenty of churches around downtown and they may also have some Easter Sunday activities.. The ones I listed are the ones I knew about.. I'm not suggesting you go to any of these but if you want to there you go..

As for me, I'll probably end up at Disneyland. Unless Botegga Louie is open.. mmmmm Botegga Louie. For me the holidays are about food of course.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

false alarm

LAFD @ the Rosslyn
What ended up being a false alarm, had the LAFD making a run to the Rossyln late Tuesday night/ Wednesday morning. A prankster residents had pulled the alarm.