11th Annual LA River Ride Is Sunday, Come Help Mark The Route Tomorrow

The author as Thatawayman somewhere between Boyle Heights and Vernon last year (Photo courtesy my friend and fellow route marker Stephen Roullier).

I’m a far more consistent Los Angeles River Ride volunteer than I am a participant. Though I can trace my sporadic involvement as a rider back to 2001, I’ve only done the LA County Bicycle Coalition’s annual trip to Long Beach and back four times.

Part of the reason for such laxness is that I’ve been far more consistent every year since 2006 in getting up the morning before the big event and getting my ride on helping to mark the section of the route from Mariachi Plaza in Boyle Heights to Imperial Highway and back.

This year’s no exception. And the reason I’m telling you this is not only to remind you the ride itself is Sunday, but also to invite you — if you’re both morning-embracing and volunteeristically inclined — to join me and the hearty band of route markers tomorrow morning either at 7:30 a.m. in front of Echo Park’s Brite Spot for the ride to the Los Angeles River Center, or at 8 a.m. there (map). Either way have a bike in good working order as well as a pack-pack to help haul the materials.

If the volunteer ranks marshaled tomorrow by organizer extraordinaire Colin Bogart end up a bit thin you might get pressed into service marking another stage, but if  the no-shows are minimal feel free join me and my friend Stephen Roullier. We’re planning after we finish placing arrows and hanging signs (somewhere around noon) on lunching at the Most Awesome Blue Star in the Scrap Metal District before heading back uptown.


Back by very popular demand, blogging.LA is proud to announce the 2011 Donut Summit, the sequel to last summer’s showdown, from which Glendora’s Donut Man emerged with the much-coveted title of Donut King!  Mark your calendars for Sunday, July 31, and join us for another battle for the Los Angeles Donut Crown!  Check back next week for more details.

And today, not coincidentally, is National Donut Day!  I suggest you pre-game for the Donut Summit with a donut or twelve from your favorite donut establishment.  Or check out some of the extra special Donut Day offerings that some local eateries have on the menu just for today:

BLD, at 7450 Beverly Blvd., is offering a three donut flight that includes a blueberry ricotta donut with maple syrup, a banana cream pie donut, and a pulled pork donut.  (via LA Weekly)

The Buttermilk Truck has donuts on offer this week in conjunction with the Geffen Playhouse’s new show, Superior Donuts.  They’ll be in front of the Geffen in Westwood from 11:30-2:00 today, with donuts served up by members of the cast.  You can follow the Buttermilk Truck on twitter.

This year is actually the 73rd National Donut Day, believe it or not.  It was started by the Salvation Army to honor veterans after World War I, and more specifically to honor “lassies,” who were female volunteers who provided piping hot donuts to American troops during the war.  Many local donut shops are accepting donating part of today’s proceeds to the Salvation Army.  A list of participating LA donut shops is available here.

If you’ve got any favorite spots to hit for National Donut Day, let us know in the comments!  And don’t forget to join us on July 31st for the Ultimate Donut Showdown!!!

Things we leave behind as the kids grow up.

I’m just a bit melancholy this morning. My youngest is finishing up middle school where it seems like I’ve spent an eternity already. Both of my boys were in Drama as their elective. Their fall and spring plays were always punctuated with some corny jokes by their teacher Randy Medina during the intermission.  Last night was my final “Spring Performance” by the Clifton Middle School Drama class and am going to miss those corny, punny jokes of his.

Yo Gabba Gabba show @ Meltdown Comics

Yo Gabba Gabba @ Meltdown Comics
Yo Gabba Gabba @ Meltdown Comics

Yo Hipsters, Comic Book Nerds & Alcoholics Anonymous Members (you know who you are)… if you fall into one of these categories, then make sure to clear your Friday night to check out the opening reception of “Here is my Art” A Yo Gabba Gabba Gallery Show at Meltdown Comics on Sunset.

Curated by Julia Vickerman, the art director & co-creator of Yo Gabba Gabba! This show pulls together work from the likes of Christian Jacobs, Leslie Hall, Mark Mothersbaugh, Parker Jacobs, Brandon Bird, Jesse Ledoux, Charlyne Yi, Carlos Ramos, Deanna Rooney, Joel Fox, Kali Fontecchio, Myke Chilian, Dylan Sprouse, Joel Trussell, Erin Pearce, Kevin Sukho Lee, Julia Vickerman & David Wain. Which takes care of the hipsters who love the show & the comic book nerds who’ve followed the careers of several of these artists…

And for the alcoholics & those in recovery alike, the adorable duo of Alie & Georgia will be on hand whipping up a Yo Gabba Gabba cocktail which will be sure to surprise, tingle and amaze your taste-buds.

So mark it in your calendar.

Friday, June 3rd
7pm – 10pm

Meltdown Comics
7522 West Sunset Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90046
(323) 851-7223

Menu Mining: Breakfast Burrito at Jack’s Classic Hamburgers stand

Jack's Classic Hamburgers standBreakfast burritos are a wonderful thing, bringing together two very great things – breakfast and burritos – into one conglomerate of awesomeness. But the unfortunate reality is that they cannot always be trusted. (I’m looking at you, Fred 62.)

Now, Jack’s Classic Hamburgers, just near the place where the 170, 134, and 101 freeways converge, may or may not do many other things well. Frankly, I wouldn’t know. I got turned on to the breakfast burritos here a few years back, and I’ve never seen reason to bother with ordering anything else. I’m not even sure if the breakfast burrito is on the menu (I think it’s not) because I haven’t bothered looking that closely at the menu. Continue reading Menu Mining: Breakfast Burrito at Jack’s Classic Hamburgers stand

Blogging (in) LA: Franklin Avenue

Franklin Avenue

In 2003, Mike Schneider and Maria Villar, a young married couple living on Franklin Avenue, started a blog of the same name. More than eight years have passed, they have moved to another part of the city and added two kids to their family, but they continue to chronicle all things Los Angeles and more.

One of my favorite Franklin Avenue features is the restaurant reviews. They have visited hundreds of eateries and provided short and sweet write-ups with just the essential information. High points, low points, what they ate and whether or not they will go back. I’ve referred to it more than once. In addition to eating, Mike and family attend and report on lots of local events, such as the annual Festival of Books and ice skating downtown. They chronicled the remaining years of the Ambassador Hotel and its eventual demise. For the past few years, Mike and Maria have organized the Great Los Angeles Walk. Over 100 Angelenos joined them for the entire 15.8 miles of Wilshire in 2010.

You’ll also find frequent coverage of the local media on Franklin Avenue. Mike is a media insider and L.A is a media town, so it makes sense. Look for posts featuring everything from retro newscast videos to screenshots of Los Angeles locations appearing in tv shows, which I get a kick out of. Franklin Avenue is a personal blog and is peppered with posts about family and occasional out of town vacations. But, it always comes back to Los Angeles, the city that Mike and Maria call home and enjoy exploring.

Make it a GIRLVERT Wednesday!

Hey Kids – No wait, strike that – Hey Adventurous Non-Squeamish Over-18-Year-Olds!

The inimitable Ori (aka Ashley Blue aka GIRLVERT aka Oriana Small) has written a memoir that will twist your brain better than any Terence Malick movie ever could.

And guess what? She’s reading excerpts (and doing who knows what else) tonight at Largo at the Coronet!

Not sure if scanning the doo-dah in this image will work or not but do please find a way to attend. Knowing what I know, you’ll be talking about this for a while.

Win Passes to THREAD Show June 12

thread runway
the runway at thread

Let me start with a confession: I’ve never been to THREAD. In fact, I’d actually not even heard of it until after I posted about Unique LA and one of the vendors asked me if I were going. But don’t judge the event by my ignorance; I’ve never pretended to be a real fashionista. I can’t walk in high heels and I don’t own a purse that costs more than $20. I’ve spent most of my life in graduate school or working for nonprofits so I favor a bottom feeder aesthetic myself (you can see the whole pond from down here).  All that said, THREAD sounds super fun and I’m going.

The show travels from city to city and showcases 100 independent designers. It’s taking place Saturday June 12 at the Cooper Design Center, which is a nice space, and there will be djs, art, a photo booth, a clothing swap, spots to get manicures and shoulder rubs, and even a “man cave” with beer and darts and “entertainment for male shoppers” (one fears to think). According to the website FAQ, goods are priced $15-$200 so even those of us on a budget should be plenty happy. I love to support independent designers, and an event with music and free stuff and snacks sounds perfect. Admission is cheap ($10 or $5 with an rsvp), but even better, I’ve got pairs of passes to give away. What’s better than something for nothing? Just leave me a comment below telling me what’s on your fashion wish-list, and winners will be selected randomly by June 8.  

When: Sunday June 12, noon-6

Where: Cooper Design Space, 860 South Los Angeles Street, 11th floor

(VIP entry 11-noon is  available for $25 to the first 300 in line and includes a swag bag and a free cocktail. We’re giving away a regular entry, not a VIP pass.)