I had the pleasure yesterday afternoon of setting out from Redondo Beach for a three-hour tour with my friend and Blogging.la’s very own Cybele who’s now in her second season as a duly authorized and certified docent with the American Cetacean Society’s Whalewatch Program and San Pedro’s Cabrillo Marine Aquarium.
Sure, there are those of us out there for whom the thought of going out on a boat to gawk at fish (or mammals in this case) leaves them scratching their harpoons and sharpening their heads or vice versa. But for those of us packing the boat on a chilled and choppy but otherwise bodaciously gorgeous MLK Jr. Day (give or take the occasional sniff of what I can only imagine was proof that the smell of two-million gallons or spilled raw sewage travels well and smells something awful), there were mesmerizing moments like this:
Sighting logged at: N 33d 46.410; W 118d 26.687
Any offending aromatics certainly didn’t bother the marine life we spotted, which included first a solitary Pacific gray whale (pictured above) traveling through the bay on its way to Baja, then a group of aloof Risso’s dolphins, distinctive because of their body markings and tall dorsal fins. And just when we thought it was time to head in, there they blew at three o’clock to starboard with the wreck of The Dominator at the base of Palos Verdes bluffs as a backdrop,: a group of three, perhaps four, gray whales traveling pretty quickly out towards deeper waters.
I was introduced to SRL in SF in 1995 when I worked with one of main ladies of SRL – Karen Marcelo at the same day job. She came into work one day wearing a black and yellow SRL t-shirt and told stories of their show in Texas. Later I’d hear stories of the remote control Air Launcher. I was entranced with the DIY robot destruction, and have since continued to sporadically follow SRL happenings.
I recently caught up with them in LA last April when they were in town for their SRL heart LA show.
Now, SRL is coming back to LA. FringeExhibitions is displaying the sneaky soldiers from battles complete with their battle wounds. They will be showing footage from previous battles (or you can check some out now).
The opening reception is on Jan 21st, 6-8pm at Fringe (504 chung king court, LA 90012). The exhibit runs through February 25th.
If SRL sounds like your thing, you can participate! Operate your own excessive machinery, host an event or take my favorite position: Prop and Set building: Fabricate props and sets for srl event backdrops. All your work guaranteed to be totally destroyed.
The holidays may have just passed but Pomona College’s Museum of Art is giving me a belated present…continue reading
So says Mayor Villaraigosa anyway. Here’s a rather detailed piece on SacBee about the a 200-or-so-page report released this week which basically said we’ve got a crapload of homeless people here.
“The report by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority estimated that 82,291 people were homeless in Los Angeles County on any given night in 2005, with about 48,103 of the county’s homeless living within Los Angeles’ city limits…
“The study also reported that California’s estimated homeless population of 195,367 is the highest in the nation. Forty-six percent of the state’s homeless population is located in Los Angeles County, according to researchers, who determined that one of every 110 people in the county are homeless on any given night.”
While I guess this is news, I’m not sure it’s that surprising. I mean, if you were going to be homeless year round, where would you want to live? Los Angeles or Chicago? Los Angeles or New York? No snow makes a big difference I’m sure. But what I want to know is how come it took some huge report to figure this out? Have these people never been downtown on 5th street? Have you ever seen anything like that in any other town in the US? Obviously we’ve got way homeless people here. There’s some other real shockers in the report like this:
“The survey found that more than 34 percent of the homeless reported experiencing mental illness and 55 percent of all homeless reported experiencing depression. About 35 percent reported using drugs, while 40 percent said they were using alcohol.”
Can you believe it? Mental Illness? Depression?? Alcohol useage??? I hope a monsterous chunk of my taxes went to pay the people who did the research on this. No because they deserve it, hell if you’d asked me last week about those breakdown that’s about what I would have guessed. No, they need to get paid because they pulled off a major scam. I can’t wait for their next report where they tell us just how wet the water at the beach is.
For an outside of CA perspective, contrast the above with this take on the topic from KWWL in Iowa. I’m pretty sure they are more baffled by the correct pronunciation of Villaraigosa (vee-yah-ry-GOH’-sah) than the actual news.
The latest in my never-ending obsession reporting on abLA fave Ed Ruscha…continue reading
There’s plenty of reasons why I don’t live in Westwood (rent, tiny apartments, parking, noise, too many damn students), but concern for my safety was never one of the reasons. Right now, I feel pretty glad I made that decision even though Westside traffic sucks.
Since December 27th, a man has been assaulting women by grabbing their breasts from behind and then fleeing on foot. The incidents occur in the day time and early in the evening (6-7 pm). The fifth incident of sexual battery was reported Tuesday, but occurred on Sunday morning.
A female student was walking on the 400 block of Landfair Avenue at approximately 9:30 a.m. Sunday when the suspect approached her from behind and attempted to grab her breasts. In each of the other four cases, the suspect has approached his female victim from behind and grabbed her breasts before fleeing. (Daily Bruin)
The UCPD advises students and other residents to: stay alert and attuned to surroundings, especially suspicious activities or people; not walk alone at night; have key ready and in your hand when approaching your car, so that you can get in quickly; keep walking or go into a public place if someone is loitering near your unoccupied car as you approach it; park in a secured garage when available.
I took a self-defense class last year through the UCLA Center for Women and Men and Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women (LACAAW). It was definitely worth giving up a Saturday morning to learn some basic tactics to prevent assaults.
Monday is a holiday for many of us and I’m putting the paid time off to good use by narrating another whalewatching cruise out of Redondo Beach Sportfishing on Monday afternoon.
Come on! You get the weekday rate ($13) and get to come back to work with some cool things to talk about. Maybe even some photos to show off.