Be a good neighbor

be a good neighbor

Admittedly I haven’t walked around much in parts of West Hollywood and surrounding areas recently but last time I did I certainly don’t remember seeing these stencils on every corner. However, yesterday every place I turned I saw more of them. Near Sunset and Plam, near Beverly and Kings Road, near Santa Monica and La Brea. They are all over the place. Is this a city thing or a some vigilante poop-hater? Please tell me these things are new and I have just been missing them for years.

Its all fun and games until somebody gets shot.

Jill Leovy writes that her Homicide Blog has tracked at least 24 murders so far this year that have involved a party. The most recent was shortly after 1am Saturday at a residence two blocks away from L.A. City College, where a 22 year old white man man was shot.

This was apparently a “clean” party, until some party crashers arrived, including the suspect, who escaped the scene.

Leovy posts some guidelines from a Rampart police sergeant on how to keep yourself safe:

If you are at a party ,and the mood or the mix of the crowd seems to be changing, leave, he said. If an argument breaks out involving anyone at the party, leave. If you are throwing the party, and, “you look around and you don’t recognize the people at the party,” call the police. “We are trying to get the word out,” said Bojorquez. “When you lose control of your party, call us.”

What makes the most recent killing stand out is the race of the victim – the other party related murder victims have been minorities, mostly of Hispanic or Latino descent.

A Transylvanian Transformation None Too Terrific

Going to last night’s world premiere adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula at The Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum hopes ran high for yet another ambitious production realized across the broad boards of its bucolic Topanga Canyon stage. And as the first act opened things were headed in a right and imaginative direction — with even the local wildlife getting into the act in enhancing the eeriness what with a barn owl screeching spookily somewhere out there in the dark of the surrounding woods and a bat’s amazing fly-by that upstaged a scene at Castle Dracula but in doing so provided an incredible moment of authenticity.

drac.jpgBut ambition alone does not a successful show make, and the fact is this Dracula sucks. Tragically that incredulous chiropteran cameo was about as good as it got in opening night’s uneven, overloaded and undying workshop-level production written and directed by Ellen Geer who apparently couldn’t make up her mind if she wanted a drama, comedy or musical so decided it would be all three, sometimes with ridiculously farcical results.

But not for the troop’s lack of trying. The onstage live narration was effective and the large and mostly talented ensemble cast prove gamely enthusiastic and committed throughout the proceedings, but as the second act dragged onward through various characters bursting into song to its inevitable and piss poorly choregraphed climactic battle (in which the death of cowboy Quincey dumbfoundedly overshadows the killing of Dracula), the energies of the actors were focused less on their performances and more on just getting the mouthfuls of Victorian-era dialogue out as quickly as damn possible in a losing effort to keep the show’s runtime from topping the three-hour mark.

WHAT: Dracula
WHERE: The Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum, 1419 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Topanga, CA 90290; 310/455-3723
HOW MUCH: $20-$25
WHEN: Through September 29

Photo of Chad Jason Scheppner as Dracula
and Christina Howard as Lucy by Miriam Geer.

LAX Theme Building Update (Plus Some LAX History)

I was dropping off the hubby at the airport yesterday and had to whip out my camera for this pic. (Click for much bigger.)

As you may have heard or read, the Theme Building at LAX has been under unexpected renovation after a big chunk fell out of it. The Encounter Restaurant & Bar was forced to close while the work is being done. This article reports that the restaurant should re-open by mid-September but the scaffolding will remain in place until 2008. (Presumably because they will still be working on it. Let’s just hope that Encounter renovates their menu and price list a bit as well.)

More photos and LAX/Theme Building info after take off.
Continue reading LAX Theme Building Update (Plus Some LAX History)

MHS Student showing at Monrovia’s Art Walk tonight

7%2028%2007002.jpg “Two Halves Are Better Than One” (and it gets bigger too)

Tonight I had the pleasure of being across from the High School Ceramics Instructor Sal Perez and his students. What caught my eye was the table full of sculptures being set up by one of his students. One of the scuptures by a 3rd year art student at MHS is what really caught my eye. Ms Wenqing Yan does the most amazing sculptures based on the characters in “anime’ cartoons.

And you read that right only 3 years she has been doing her art. Amazing stuff with a talent that continues to grow according to her teacher and her fellow students at MHS.

Ms Yan has a web site with more information link here. Also here’s a few more pics taken with the trusty belt loop blogger the ‘che-ez’ snap that I always have with me.



PSA for LA Joggers

Seriously, guys: if you don’t have someone (a friend? Your mom?) to help apply the sunscreen to your back, wear a t-shirt.

You’re welcome, guy I saw on 3rd Street near Larchmont at about 1:15 today.

Downward Dog Driving

Yoga in the car? With a CD? My first response was to snort and laugh at the ridiculous lengths we’ve gone to in the name of yoga. But… I AM a yoga enthusiast and know that living the true yogini life is to incorporate yoga into every single thing we do. Then, as karma would have it, after reading the press release for this, and making jokes, I got stuck in a massive traffic jam on my way back from the Westside, and realized that doing a bit of breathing exercises to de-stress in the car could be a good thing. Los Angeles yoga teacher, Jen Swain created this CD to play in the car and as a way to introduce yoga to the masses… simple exercises to do while sitting in the car on the 405. She credits yoga with saving her life after she was hit with cancer and wants to spread the her “Om the Road” goodness in the world.

Lohan Trainwreck rolls along without track (marks)

lohanmug1.jpg Mugshot borrowed from Crime Scene which has links to her booking records. Isn’t that mugshot the best example of what appears to be a bad case of cracne ? Damn….amazing stuff shows up when the makeup is gone.

Gawd I love a trainwreck. After the whole Paris Hilton goes to jail I didn’t think we’d see anything top it soon. I was wrong. Very wrong. Not only did Ms Lohan get arrested for allegedly driving under the influence and possession of cocaine earlier this week, the ante has been upped with her passengers making claims against her.

Yup, according to Defamer dot com her passengers now have an attorney making claims against her for the wild ride they had with her. Yup, thank you Plaintiff Bar for kicking it up a notch and going after her pocket book. The full details are in the Defamer article but the short of of it is her passengers, known as the “Denali 3” claim she drove the Denali without the owners permission, refused to let them out (kidnap is such an ugly word) and left them psychologically scarred by driving wrecklessly (emotional distress). Thank Jeebus for the ability to bring forth civil claims to keep us all entertained when a good train wreck comes rolling by.
Continue reading Lohan Trainwreck rolls along without track (marks)

Another Veggie Option: Bean Sprouts


When it comes to a proper sit-down vegetarian restaurant, it seems you’re most likely to end up at one with an Asian twist, they just know how to do it right. Mexican and American style vegetarian cooking has a long way to go to catch up to the great veggie cuisine coming out of that far away continent. And it looks like Asian cooking is going to push ahead from the non-race just a bit more with this latest addition to the menu: Bean Sprouts Vegetarian Restaurant.
Continue reading Another Veggie Option: Bean Sprouts

Community, Crafts and the Alexandria Hotel

la%20times%20palm%20court.jpgThis Sunday it’ll be an extraordinary event as Fleur de Lethal Productions–the brainchild of one Nico Bella–co-conspirator of the 1947project, impresaria of artsy-tartsy nightlife, and one helluva crafty burlesque dancer–partners up with the shady lady of Downtown’s SRO hotels-cum-historic destination, the lavish Alexandria. Together they’re hosting the “Ballroom Blitz,” designed as not just a craft fair, but as a community event, drawing in some of Downtown’s coolest DJs and the good folks of the Lost Souls Cafe.

There’ll be 30 vendors ranging from vintage rags and records to crafts, corsets and jewelry, all together to create the ultimate “yard-less yard sale” for Downtown’s urban jungle. “Simple events like yard sales become a
huge challenge because — we have no yards!” says Nico. “However we do have access to unusual and gorgeous spaces. I hope that this inspires residents of downtown to start thinking different about the spaces they live in.”

And the Alexandria ballroom is a helluva space (here’s a kinda tour…and here). Unseen by most non-residents for decades (the Alexandria has been notorious in the past for making it hard for photographers, architectural historians and reporters to access the building’s faded glories–but that seems to be changing), the ceiling of the Palm Court ballroom is a giant vista of Tiffany glass. Tiffany ceilings are now extraordinarily rare in the US. You should go just to check out the building, seriously, even if you don’t buy a single thing.

More details–like DJs and food and stuff–behind the jump.

Thanks to the LA Times for the bitchen’ photo.
Continue reading Community, Crafts and the Alexandria Hotel

Ticket Giveaway : Guru w/ Jazzmataz @ the El Rey : This Saturday

Brought to you by the department of procrastination, I am giving away 3 pairs of tickets to the Guru show this Saturday. If you want a pair, be one of the first three people to post a comment. It is extremely important that you respond to the email I send you and give me your full name so I can put you on the list. If you want to make extra sure, feel free to put your full name in the comment. Here is a bit more info:

KCRW Presents
7/29 Guru w/ Jazzmatazz @ the El Rey
Featuring: Superproducer Solar,Dj Doo Wop and The 7 Grand Band

UPDATE Oops guess it would help if the comments were open!