It happened at night when no one was looking. A gas station was turned into a “grass station”, an urban oasis of sorts. It was part of CODA Automotive’s campaign to bring about awareness of their all electric car that is on sale now. So far CODA has set up an “Experience Center” in the Century City Mall, as well as an indy dealer, Martin Coda of Los Angeles on West Olympic in L.A. I have to give these guys credit for bringing something fun to a L.A. neighborhood and getting me to notice.
One of the oldest spans across the Los Angeles River, the 7th Street Bridge dates back to 1910 when the at-grade version included two-sets of trolley tracks. It quickly became one of the most congested ways across the river and by the late 1920s it was decided that rather than demolish the entire structure, a second level would be built on top giving it a double-decker appearance and allowing traffic to move freely without being impeded by any freight trains traveling through.
Ever since I first noticed that open but inaccessible lower level of the 7th Street Bridge about eight years ago, I’ve wondered what it’s like inside, and my curiosity only increased a couple years ago when LA River advocate Joe Linton found a way in and wrote about it on his blog LA Creek Freak. It again was piqued a few months ago when the news hit that there are plans in the very early stages to convert the space to an open-air market.
During a visit paid to the bridge last summer while on one of my riverbed rides, I couldn’t figure out how Linton got up there, and I had pretty much reconciled that the space was to remain off limits to me — until a couple weeks ago, when an acquaintance of Linton’s contacted me out of the blue and said she knew how he got in and would I be game to try. Of course I would, I said.
Certainly not THAT bridge. Nowhere near the one Anthony Keidis sings of drawing blood and giving his life away. But a bridge’s under nonetheless — in this case the one that carries Sunset Boulevard over Silver Lake Boulevard — that the majority of passers-through traverse safely installed within the confines of vehicles. Perhaps there’s a scant percentage of those commuters who know that it was designed by none other than Los Angeles bridge-building master (and unsung LA hero) Merrill Butler, constructed in 1932 and was declared Historic-Cultural Monument No. 236 in 1981.
Since it’s in my neighborhood, I travel beneath it on foot or by bike pretty regularly. It’s often more foreboding than friendly, but that’s precisely why I venture through… to keep a claim on it. That, and it’s got some nice Romanesque architectural details (groined vault arches, FTW) that go otherwise unnoticed.
Another thing that would otherwise go unseen is a recent addition from Caché (pronounced cat-chay), my favorite muralist, famed around these here parts of LA’s Upside for his prolific chickens. This one, painted simply on the inside of the column in the deepest darkest part of the bridge (shown at right, too dark to capture in the above panorama) is nothing less than a pleasant surprise, a bit of whimsy in a serious place, a ray of light in the shadows. A hidden caché, if you will.
So some 18 million of us in the greater L.A. area can’t be wrong about the famed In-n-Out burger. Food and Wine just named it one of the best burgers in the country. The only “chain” to make the list.
For my daughter and Son-in-law no trip “home” is complete without a trip to In-n-Out. There is much discussion on which version we prefer, I’m a purest and go for the regular cheese burger as does my daughter, the SIL likes it animal style. What’s your preference?
One of my most favorite art gallery’s in L.A. has got to be the L.A. Center for Digital Art. Maybe because I drift into that realm with my own art often, but the images shown there are technically at the top of that genre and media.
The current show that will run this month is the Electron Salon bringing in art from 24 different artists. Its opening reception will take place in conjunction with Thursdays Art Walk at L.A.C.D.A from 7-9PM.
If you are planning on attending this weeks Art Walk and the Artists Reception at L.A.C.D.A take a train to Pershing Square and walk the 3 blocks or so to Gallery Row. It beats the hassle of traffic and trying to find parking in the area of this well attended event.
As a sidebar the folks at Occupy LA have apologized for what happened at last months Art Walk. This was reported HERE in blogdowntown. (If you don’t follow blogdowntown add it to your reading list as it is a great hyper-local source of info on DTLA). Another Occupy L.A. event likely won’t happen again at this month’s art walk.
My phone sorta rang off the hook on this one. I’m a neighborhood watch captain and everyone was in a tizzy over this one. Why? Well my little neighborhood has ample street parking yet this tard opted to park in the red zone…for hours.
Will drivers ever learn to obey the parking zones or is it simply an issue of they are more important than the law?
Don’t even argue with me: Sergio Leone‘s Once Upon a Time in the West is the best film ever made. Leone got together with fellow Italian filmmakers Bernardo Bertolucci and Dario Argento, studied some of the greatest Westerns (High Noon, The Searchers, etc.), including their locations and iconic shots, and came up with a film that is simultaneously a parody of and loving homage to the Western genre. You’ll see things that are subconsciously familiar, like dusters and Monument Valley, and things that are deliciously unfamiliar, like Henry Fonda as one of the meanest villains ever to grace the screen.
And hopefully you’ll see it all this Saturday, August 4 at 7:30 p.m. at the Aero Theater in Santa Monica, as part of the American Cinematheque film series. Of course, that part about Once Upon a Time being the greatest film ever made is subjective, but don’t seriously call yourself a movie lover or film buff until you’ve seen this classic.
I’m a first amendment kind of guy, but I’m smart enough to know that what you say (or do) has consequences and you need to live with them. As a refresher Chick-fil-a has donated some $1M towards anti-LGBT causes and publicly has acknowledged doing so and said it saw nothing wrong with supporting those causes they believed in. Now they are all butt hurt that people who disagree with them aren’t letting them open new businesses and promoting boycotts of them.
With a few very highly publicized refusals to allow them open new restaurants because of their political stance and voice the folks at “The Liberty and Freedom Foundation” are trying to rally people to attend the restaurants in protest. At least according to this face book meme (pic attached) there is an effort to get them some love. Maybe its time again for folks to consider exercising their free speech and gather in a picket in front of Chick-fil-a’s restaurants to educate folks on the hate this place supports? I for one have boycotted the place since learning of their politics and encourage others I know to do the same. Often.
When I was a Valley dweller back when we were first married in Valley Village our neighborhood started experiencing gang related activity and auto thefts. We were in the LAPD’s North Hollywood divisions policing territory. They worked with us to establish a Neighborhood Watch and worked with us on a variety of community issues. We became friends with several of the officers that patrolled our area. Community Policing now as outlined in the video has grown and is helping to make the neighborhoods in North Hollywood safer.
On a sidebar if you haven’t subscribed to the LAPD’s YouTube channel yet you might want to consider as aside from the infomercials and PSA’s they also have regular crime tips and vids seeking info on crimes. You can subscribe on their channel HERE.
In retro-honor of Wednesday’s opening of the first segment of the long-awaited Grand Park, which will eventually span a 12-acre corridor between City Hall and the Music Center, let’s go back 47 years earlier to November 1965 with The Turtles singing “You Baby” at the west end then of what’s now this latest addition to downtown’s renaissance. Dick Clark, take it away:
As someone who would like to make it illegal to call a bartender a “mixologist,” the genius crew who embedded “It’s Gettin’ Real In The Whole Foods Parking Lot” into my own personal lexicon, have turned their laser sights on and taken dead aim to marvelous effect at the increasingly pretentious side of the cocktail biz. Drink it up!
Here it comes again, Westsiders needing access to the 405 freeway are screwed as it will be closed that weekend again on a 10 mile stretch. Actually, the folks in the valley will be inconvenienced the worst if they need to trek over The Hill that day. KTLA ran the full story which you can read HERE. Their story has cute quotes from Yaroslavsky and Villaraigosa on what to do. My thought is do like last time, make babies and create a nice little baby boom of sorts 9 months from now.
If you see black shuttle vans in the Los Angeles area, watch out for their frequent stops. V.I.P. Tours makes lots and lots of them in the same day. For example, their “Beaches and Shopping” tour, which I encounter regularly, stops and lets its passengers out at Fisherman’s Village in Marina del Rey, Venice Beach, the Santa Monica Pier, the 3rd Street Promenade, and then heads over to Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, followed by the Beverly Center, for what can only be termed “Shop After You’ve Dropped.”
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The video is by Whittier student Kimberly Schiazza. It was entered in the Bridgestone Teen Drive Smart video contest. The contest entailed them making a PSA on distracted driving. She made it to the finals, its up to the votes to determine if she get’s the 25K prize.
The video is simply titled “Save a Life” and is in the top 10 of those submitted. You can vote HERE. (More on the contest HERE). Voting ends July 23 at 11:59 PM Eastern Time. The top three videos will be announced August 1 on Teens Drive Smart.
July 8, 2012 at 2:30 pm in LA
The man had a sense of humor. He acted in comedies and dramas. His wiki chronicles his acting career. He will be missed by many.