Monthly Archives: September 2007

Immobile Home

Just a mile south of Universal Studios, on the northbound side of the 101 (Hollywood Freeway) sits a house. Yes, I said on the freeway. Not next to it, not near it, ON it (in the right lane, to be exact).

Nine days ago homeowner Patrick Richardson and his fiancee Kimberly Bigman were attempting to move the house from Santa Monica to Santa Clarita when they discovered that the top of the house would not clear a freeway overpass. The roof was shredded and there was damage to the trailer carrying the house. Since that day, the structure has been sitting on the freeway attracting the attention of rubberneckers and graffiti artists, a definite safety hazard.

Inspection of the interior reveals squatters had already inhabited the wrecked house; trash and crude furniture were found inside.

Richardson had been given a deadline of midnight last night to move the house, which at this time he has not been able to meet. Caltrans says the house WILL be moved today, either with a last minute save by Richardson or by CalTrans with a CHP escort. If the latter happens, Richardson and Bigman will be responsible for reimbursing Caltrans to the tune of approximately $20,000.

I can’t help but feel bad for these people. I heard on some news broadcast that they had a permit to take a different route, but due to a road closure, had to take a detour, which led to the tragic meeting of roof and overpass. Talk about the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing (shouldn’t Caltrans have known their work schedule?)

The owners were relocating the house to Santa Clarita to establish it as a shelter for the homeless.

first photo by KNBC ; second by LA Times.com

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Time for Station Identification

It was reported in The Week newsmagazine that a new radio station in Hawaii is less than pleased with the call letters assigned to it by the Federal Communication Commission (or FCC).

The offending call letters are KUNT. The station manager reportedly has filed a request for new call letters.

Not to be outdone, we have a local music station here in L.A. whose call letters are KLIT…but no one seems to care about that. Apparently no one is offended at the proper name for a body part, only the slang ones.

Perhaps future broadcasting faux pas may consist of radio stations KOCK and KOME, or maybe a disc jockey named Connie Lingus.

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Filed under Humor, News

Who Will Eat the Leftovers?

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Filed under Humor, Politics

Triplet Meme

I saw this over at Lyndon’s blog Lifeslackers and decided to give it a go.

3 Things that scare me

1. George W. Bush
2. Clowns
3. The restroom at Barnes & Noble

3 People who make me laugh

1. My husband Bill

2. George W. Bush
3. Bill Maher

3 Things I love

1. God
2. Hubby

3. Gizmo and Gobi

3 Things I hate

1. Classic literature

2. Arrogant people
3. the Republican party (at least the way it is at the moment)

3 Things I don’t understand

1. War
2. Corporate behavior

3. George W. Bush (especially when he speaks)

3 Things on my desk

1. eyeglasses
2. bank statements
3.ideas for blog topics

3 Things I’m doing right now

1. Writing this post
2. Wondering when Bookmooch.com will come back online
3. Considering a bid on an EBay item I just saw

3 Things I want to do before I die

1. Go to Australia
2. Swim and interact with dolphins

3. Fly with a jet pack

3 Things I can do

1. Take relatively good photographs

2. Cook nutritiously

3. Multi-Task

3 Things I can’t do

1. bend my fingers all the way or straighten them all the way

2. kneel
3. create a green lawn

3 Things I think you should listen to

1. Your gut
2. The Decemberists
3. incoming surf

3 Things you should never listen to

1. George W. Bush

2. Religious fundamentalists or fanatics of any ilk

3. Top 40 radio
3 Shows I watched as a kid

1. Lost in Space (my ultra favorite!!)
2. Jerry Mahoney and Knucklehead Smith

3. Stingray

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Filed under Life, Musings

Skyrats

Yesterday me and my friends Shirley, Candace, and little Cory had ourselves a picnic down at the harbor (you can see the little beach at the middle left of the photo). There’s a nice little area with shaded picnic tables, a kids’ beach, restrooms, outdoor shower – all the amenities. And one other thing we did not expect.

We spread our blankets on the grass as seagulls and pigeons wheeled about overhead. Shirley had made some mouthwatering turkey sandwiches and as we were unwrapping them, we noticed the stealthy landings and approaches of the skyrats (the abovementioned birds) creeping toward our blanket islands.

Cory was amused by the birds, and I suspect Candace had sympathy (sucker!) for some of the handicapped birds with broken-looking wings and stumps for feet where their toes used to be. So she began to throw little bits of sandwich to the birds. The skyrats got closer and closer… soon they were at the fringes of our blankets. Cory put his sandwich down for a moment and got up to give his mom a hug… and the biggest, most aggressive seagull with the broken-looking wing walked right up to Cory’s plate and grabbed the half sandwich – and proceeded to swallow it whole! It was the most amazing display of boldness in seagulls that I have ever seen.

But wait…there’s more! We had stowed some of our stuff under the patio-covered shade of a picnic bench. I made the mistake of taking out a Ziploc bag of crackers , then setting it on the table. I walked away, and next thing I knew, the same big gull had seized the entire bag and was thrashing it about on the ground trying to get to the crackers inside! At this point the crackers were unattractive to us as human food, so the birds got the crackers thrown at them too, which they promptly devoured.

Yes…I know feeding the wild birds only encourages them. And that their behavior today is a reflection of human interference. I prefer to think of it as human kindness.

But then again I’d rather not have a seagull in my plate.

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Filed under Birds, Humor

August 2007 Reading List

So, here are the books I have read for the month of August. I discovered authors whose work I had never read before. There’s a legend that explains the rating system below the reviews.

 

1 Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin © 1978 – The first in a series of, I believe, six books about the denizens of a small apartment house in San Francisco in the 70’s. Intrigues and mysteries abound among these neighbors. This book ends as if the author knew he was going to write more – there are several loose ends.☻☻☻

 

2 S is for Silence by Sue Grafton © 2005 – The author has written most of the way through the alphabet (starting with “A is for Alibi” and her latest is “T is for Trespass”). This is a mystery series revolving around private eye Kinsey Millhone. Grafton’s plots are just complicated enough for you to feel proud that you understand what’s going on, and her prose is very accessible (once her book is picked up, it will not be put down for hours). In this outing Kinsey is hired to discover what happened to a woman who vanished 34 years earlier. Fascinating and well-plotted. ☻☻☻☻☻

 

3 Chemistry of Death by Simon Beckett ©2007 – Written by a British author and set in a small town in England, this novel is about a forensic expert turned country physician who studies the aftermaths of a serial killer’s actions to discover his or her identity. First rate. Occasionally British mysteries are stuffy affairs, but this one is extremely readable. Another hard-to-put –down tome. ☻☻☻☻

 

4The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid ©2007 – Amazing first-person narrative (novel) told to an unknown American by a young Pakistani man, whose promising life in America was compromised by the aftermath of public opinion about Muslims after 911.☻☻☻☻☻

 

5 A Window Across the River by Brian Morton © 2003 –Novel about a New York City woman who is a writer. Unfortunately, she can only find inspiration writing about people she knows, especially intuiting their flaws and inner conflicts. Naturally her stories do not go over well with her subjects.☻☻☻

 

 

LEGEND:

☻☻☻☻☻ Excellent. I highly recommend this book. Wonderfully plotted or chockful of insights.

☻☻☻☻ Very good. May have minor aspects of style or plot that prevented it from getting 5 smileys.

☻☻☻ Flawed, but of some entertainment or thought-provoking value.

☻☻ Read this book if you are stranded on a desert island and have nothing else handy to read.

Don’t bother, it’s a waste of time. A suggested use is to light the fire for cooking your fish on the desert island.

 

 

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Cory Gets a Haircut!

My favorite boy Cory (whom you may remember from my earlier post”An Old Soul“) got a haircut last week. Previously his mom Candace had been cutting his hair, so this was I believe his first barbershop haircut.

Candace said people were mistaking Cory for a girl. I must say, after this haircut, that will no longer be a problem. He is all boy!!

BEFORE


AFTER

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