Patchwork Craft Show No Go

I had every intention of going to the Patchwork Show in Santa Ana today but a series of events kept me from it.  First church (hi hippie Unitarians!) which got canceled due to the kid oversleeping her morning nap, then I spent too much time researching ways to use my remaining root vegetables from the Culver City Farmers Market to make leftover turkey chili, Skyped with the in laws, and then I happened to look at a map and discovered Santa Ana is hella far down in the OC. By that time, this wet stuff had started falling from the sky.  Too bad…  lots of great vendors were at the Long Beach show and I was looking forward to shoving some cash at them.  Next up…  Unique LA!

Have Infant, Will Travel

People often ask me how I get around so much with an infant. It’s pretty easy: my daughter is 5 months old and can’t say “please stop dragging me to everything, Mom.” Since her birth in June, we’ve been in perpetual motion, stopping only long enough to nurse and fight naps. There’s been a diaper change or two in there somewhere.

WeHo Pumpkin PatchWe’ve been to 3 weddings, 2 baby showers, a wedding shower, and a family reunion, visited folks in 4 states and the District of Columbia, saw the world’s largest rubber ducky in Long Beach, watched Shakespeare in Griffith Park, perused art at the world’s oldest and largest artist colony at the LA Brewery Art Walk, toured one of California’s most over-embellished homes at Hearst Castle, stared at the biggest trees in Big Sur, and gaped at the most expansive collection of Greek artifacts on the West Coast at the Getty Villa. There was a dust-free party for the Burning Man left-behinds in Reseda, a backyard Octoberfest in Eagle Rock, a quick spin through the Patchwork Craft Fair in Long Beach, a free ferry ride to Catalina for my birthday, a single visit to the “Birth Stories” lecture series in Venice, and more baby storytime at the local library than you can shake a stick at. We also spotted a well-known but poorly aging celebrity at a pumpkin patch in West Hollywood. Would it be LA without a star sighting?

I thought life with a baby would slow me down but I’ve been to more places with my tiny partner in crime than I ever went as a single entity. My desire to show my kid the best our world has to offer gets me out of my shell and reintroduces me to all the reasons I moved to California. We don’t plan on stopping. Well, maybe after this nap.

Help the Red Cross

While this doesn’t directly relate to Los Angeles, I don’t really care. Unless you’ve been living under a rock the last 24 hours, you know some serious shit went down in Japan. Stuff that could easily happen here in Los Angeles. YOU can help. Donate to the Red Cross. There’s a direct link HERE. You’re welcome to click on the Japan tab, but remember there’s bad things happening elsewhere. Why not make a general donation? The money will go where it’s needed most.

C’mon. Skip the Starbucks once and spend that money to help those in need. Who knows? It could be you seeking out the Red Cross after a huge quake here. Wouldn’t you want them to have enough supplies for you?

Simple Beauty

I’m not entirely sure why this is so incredible, but it really is.  I found myself listening to this for over an hour the first time. Something about the radio chatter and the chillout music just goes perfectly together. A great way to finish out my day discovering this great city of ours (more on that later). ‘Til then, enjoy.

Vintage Expo + Pop Up Shop this Saturday

Michael Stahl's Helms photo used through Creative Commons license

Get dad a sharkskin suit or a vintage tie for Father’s Day–head to the Helms Bakery building for what sounds like a damned cool event. Billed as “part ‘Pop-Up Shop,’ part vintage expo, part art opening,” this one day event should be good shopping and people watching. If you’ve ever been to the clothing and textile show in Burbank, you know that there promise to be plenty of Rockabilly and Bettys at the Helms Saturday.  I met the event organizer, Dave from Clever Vintage Clothing, at a Hidden LA meet-up and then I saw him at the Burbank show, and I can tell you the man will find you what you’re looking for. If you’ve got a vintage itch, he’ll help you scratch it. For this event, he’s gathered 12 of his favorite dealers.

The details:
Saturday, June 19, 2010
10:00am – 4:00pm
At the LightSpace Studio at the Historic Helm’s Bakery Building
8755 Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA

Donut Summit: TOMORROW!

Hope you’re all stocked up with antacids, because the Donut Summit is almost upon us!

We’ll see you there tomorrow, in Griffith Park (find us near the Vermont entrance), at 1pm, with your donuts!  I’m super excited – word on the street is that there will be strawberry donuts from the Donut Man, and I’m bringing blueberry donuts from my own beloved little Tasty Donuts, and all kinds of general donut-themed foolishness is planned!  You can find more information about what’s in store here.

And big thanks to the fine folks over at Brand X for the shout out!

Donut Summit countdown is on!

Things are getting very exciting over here at Donut Summit HQ!  Only three more days to go!  And we’ve been featured on Flavorpill, so we want to thank the fine folks over there for the awesome shout out!

And as you’re getting ready for Sunday, you might want to think about brushing up on your donut know-how, because if you think we’re just going to be eating donuts, think again:  we have all kinds of donut fun and games cooked up!  There will be donut trivia contests!  (Do you know who invented the donut?  Hint:  It wasn’t the Earl of Donut.)  There will  the Amazing Hands-Free Donut Eating Challenge!  And, for you literary types, there will be a prize for the best donut haiku!

To get you inspired, here is a donut poem that is not, in fact, a haiku, but rather, is modeled after the oeuvre of William Blake:

Cruller, cruller, burning bright,

In a strip mall late at night,

What immortal pastry

Could better harden arteries?

If that’s not inspiring, please, tell me what is.  And tell me in person, at the Donut Summit!  Sunday, 1pm, picnic area near the intersection of Vermont and Commonwealth Canyon in Griffith Park.  And BRING DONUTS!!

Vote Today!!!

I know lots of you are weary of politics and the difficulty this city seems to be having in the basics of operating.  But don’t let cynicism rule! Now is the time to make your voice heard, so get on down to the polling station and vote.  I’m taking a moment out of my crazy day to cast a vote for the people I hope will make living here easier.  Yes, Mr. Brown, that is YOU for the primary race for Governor.  I’m counting on your allegiance to not throwing around 90 million dollars (helloooo Republlican Meg Whitman) to get elected.  Hopefully that reflects your common man approach.

Also, gotta put the brakes on State Measure 16.  PG & E has poured millions and millions of dollars into this, trying to hoodwink the public into granting them a virtually monopoly and very little accountability.  A big no for me.  Big corporate entities have shown us their lack of responsibility all around and I’m not inclined to support them any more.

Kamala Harris gets my vote for Attorney General.  She seems the most sane…

Anyway, see you at the polls!

Mapping LA, Again

Last year, the Los Angeles Times unveiled its Mapping LA project, in which it attempted to define the boundaries of some 87 distinct neighborhoods in the city.  Besides stirring up some decades-old debate over what really constitutes the “East Side,” it was an interesting experiment in city identity and even pride.  It looks like the Times is back with an expanded versions of its map – it now features a top-down view of 158 cities (including unincorporated areas) and 114 neighborhoods within LA proper.  If you click on a particular city, it’ll take you to a page where you can choose a particular neighborhood within that city; clicking on the neighborhood yields individual stats and demographics (i.e., diversity, income level) of that ‘hood.  Interesting, and an enormous time sucker, I’m sure.

Donut Summit FAQ!

One week until the Donut Summit!  Yay!  There have been some questions floating around about how things will run, so I’ve tried to answer them all below:

1.  What will happen at the Donut Summit?
It’s going to work a little something like this:

– The festivities kick off at 1pm. So, from about 1-1:30, we’ll have Donut Registration. Just show up with your Donuts, check in with our illustrious Metbloggers, and we’ll make sure your donut box is clearly labeled with the name of your donut shop.

– Once everyone’s donuts are registered (so, by about 1:30), donut tasting will begin and will last until about 2:30. We’ll have donut tasting stations set up, and we’ll provide you with a ballot for voting on your top donuts. We’ll have Donut Marshalls on hand cutting up donuts for sharing, so that everyone can taste lots of different donuts from all over the city.

– Once all of the ballots are submitted, we’ll tally the votes! While vote tallying is going on, you lucky people get to hang out with Metbloggers, and there will be fun and games!

– At around 3:30, we’ll crown the Donut King!
(Please note that all times listed above are approximate and subject to change!)

Continue reading “Donut Summit FAQ!”

Watercress Cafe: My new favorite lunch spot

Watercress Cafe

Mine is a simple life with small pleasures. A good lunch spot counts for a lot in my world. I live around the corner from Watercress Cafe on Woodman and so I’ve passed it a bazillion times, but somehow I’d never eaten there until recently. They close at 7 weeknights (4 and 3 Saturday and Sunday respectively) and I’m usually not in the neighborhood lunch hours, but now that I’m in on the secret, I’ll be having lunch there when I can.

We’re talking about the ultimate turkey sandwich, people. It has apple slices and herbed goat cheese and greens and it is on raisin bread. It is a perfect mixture of sweet and savory, smooth and crunchy. Watercress‘s turkey sandwich is, as the cute counter guy describes: a party in your mouth. Since the turkey sandwich experience, I’ve been back for a salad that had chicken and pine nuts and greens so good you don’t want to dress them.

the turkey sandwich in question

(I like my greens naked, like I like my… ahem…) I had breakfast there last weekend and it was good but not as great (in my opinion) as the lunches (but then it’s hard to keep pace with Hugo’s as far as Sherman Oaks breakfasts go).

There’s parking in the back and a coffee roaster next door. What could be wrong with that?

Hours: Monday-Friday 7 am – 7 pm, Saturday 7 am – 4 pm, Sunday 8 am – 3 pm
Watercress
13565 Ventura Boulevard
Sherman Oaks, CA 91423

Win Tickets to the Buzzcocks at Club Nokia June 5

2009 promo shot--32 years after their first single release

When I was a wee punk girl, I had a mix tape (oh yes, my cubs, I am indeed that old) that ended with the Buzzcocks‘ “Something’s Gone Wrong Again,” except cassette recording being the inexact science it is, I’d misoverestimated the amount of time left on the tape, and the song was cut off part way through. I played the hell out of that tape even so, and it was months before my best friend heard the song on vinyl and realized it wasn’t supposed to be like that. The line between artful choice and silly mistake is a thin one sometimes.

Fast forward…here we are decades later and the Buzzcocks are one of those bands that remains awesome. Art school punk rockers, auteurs of the unrequited love song, the Buzzcocks make the kind of music you put on and sing super loud in your car by yourself even though the people in the cars next to you are staring in when you belt out the lyrics to “You Know You Can’t Help It” or “Orgasm Addict.” If this sounds familiar to you, you’ll be thrilled to hear that not only are the Buzzcocks at the Nokia a week from Saturday but they are playing all of the songs off of Love Bites and Another Music in a Different Kitchen as well as other material. Yippee. Seriously it’s like punk rock Santa is coming.

You want to sit on Santa’s lap? Just leave a comment telling us about a time when something went wrong again for you. Winners will be selected randomly. Make sure you leave contact information when you post your comment or I won’t be able to reach you, which would give you more to sing about, but would suck nonetheless.

Sunday Morning at Canters

Dashed into Canter’s this morning to say hi to WilL… we’re two of the oldest bloggers… and by that I mean we’ve been around 5-6 years on this site… okay, okay, maybe we ARE even the oldest of this crew of kids… I’m not fessing up, but we’ve been around!  And he’s an inspiration in his bike riding!  I think of him riding around the city a lot of moments I’m stuck in traffic.

But back to this morning….I have to say one of the greatest things about Canter’s is that they have FREE PARKING!  How rare is that in this city?  Damn rare. And more restaurants should take notice. Canter’s has been around since the 20’s. How’s that for surviving endless financial meltdowns!!!

But amidst the cacophony of early Sunday, the array of characters was really splendid.  If you want a slice of life of LA, young, old, hipster, native, ethnic…. it’s all here.  And white toast too.  I had a Bially.  Yum!

Thanks to all you hardworking bloggers (especially Julia and Lucinda) who put this together!  Hope we raised lotsa cash for the cause!