Race For The Rescues

rtheaderraceforrescuesAnimal lovers abound here at LA Metblogs (among the authors and readers) and whether the animals are cats or dogs or bunnies or birds or even coyotes, we love them all.

On Sunday October 4th, Race For The Rescues is a fun family event to raise money to support our homeless dogs and cats and seven of the amazing organizations that keep them out of the city shelters and therefore out of the death chamber. The day’s host is The Rescue Train, a non-profit, no-kill organization, saving as many little lives as they can.

The main event at the Rose Bowl will be a 5k walk/run and 1 mile kids race. There will also be music, LA Laker cheerleaders, shopping and of course, pet adoptions. This event alone makes a huge difference in the lives of pets waiting for adoption. From the website:

In the past three years, Race For The Rescues raised over $200,000 to help support seven non-profit rescue groups. Once again we are proud to say not one dog or cat from this adoption day went back to a city shelter to face euthanasia. Help us meet our goal this year to send those city shelter trucks back EMPTY!

Sign up for the event here, or if you can’t make that day, you can send in donations or sponsor another 5k-er.

Let’s keep them goggies and lolcats out of the city shelters and get them into loving homes.

Race For The Rescues
Sunday October 4
Registration opens at 7am and events run until afternoon

Livestock, Fried Food, and Infomercials

Yes, I know it’s hot. It’s hot, and it’s in Pomona; these things are true. Even so, you should go to the LA County Fair because it’s soooo fun. Seriously–mini monster trucks, fried snickers, the tilt o’ whirl, mechanical bulls, and baby goats. You tell me how you could pack more fun into one 24-hour period. I went last weekend with some of my compadres, and here are some visual highlights. You can click them all to make them bigger and thus more fair-like.

The fair is a treasure trove of the outsized and grotesque. What better king than King Taco?
There are lots of giant things at the fair like this ant.
There are lots of giant things at the fair like this ant.
The fair has lots of fried things. I had the deep fried oreos, a near religious experience.
The fair has lots of fried things. I had the deep fried oreos, a near religious experience.
And there are games.
And there are games.
And shopping opportunities.
And shopping opportunities.
Did I mention the grotesque?
Did I mention the grotesque?

Truly the pictures can’t even capture the iceberg tip of badly tattooed, pudgy Americana shopping for Dodger themed caskets while munching on food on a stick. If Fellini had been born in the US, I am convinced he would have set at least one movie at the county fair. Go now.

Sept. 27th: Wiggle Waggle Walk in Pasadena

wigglewagglewalklogo If you are a dog lover and have the need get some exercise, Sunday will be the Wiggle Waggle Walk in Pasadena hosted by the Pasadena Humane Society and SPCA. The 1th annual fundraiser will take you on a walk around the Rose Bowl. The event, which runs from 8am – 2p, will feature various pet contests & demonstrations, many pet-friendly vendors and a Family Fun Fair.

Join thousands of animal lovers at the 2009 Wiggle Waggle Walk to help the more than 12,000 animals Pasadena Humane Society & SPCA cares for each year. Gather your family, friends, co-workers and canine companions. Collect donations and enjoy a scenic walk, jog or stroll of 1 to 3 miles around the Rose Bowl.

All fundraising information can be found on their website.

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Dressing for the H-Bomb

Nuclear_fireballAs the Station Fire still lingers over these last weeks, only now finally almost fully contained, I’ve pointed many folks to the dramatic images of the pyrocumulus clouds that have come out of it, especially the time-lapse images of these clouds developing.  Like many folks new to having such large fires quite so close, I only learned about the pyrocumulus mechanism with this fire.  One thing that is dramatic in this phenomenon (apart from the sufficiently dramatic itching eyes, headaches, and sore throats that all my friends seem to share) is its striking resemblance to an H-Bomb blast.

I am not the first to note this resemblance, of course.  Not even the first Metblogs author to do so.  Nor the first to think and write about the identity of the thermodynamic mechanism of the formation of an H-Bomb’s mushroom cloud over the course of seconds, and the fire’s formation of one over the course of days or weeks.

Continue reading Dressing for the H-Bomb

L.A.’s Summer of Pot

IMG_0772The 1960s may have had its Summer of Love, but in certain neighborhoods in and around Los Angeles, this has been the Summer of Pot. Based on my observations and conversations with friends, the herb has been a-permeatin’.

I can’t recall all the times that I have smelled or seen open weed smoking lately. Venice Beach (where I took the photo) is probably Ground Zero — no surprise there.   Last time I was on Venice Beach, I was in a shop that had a corner window facing South, and, through the window, the smell of chronic was mighty powerful.  I  also notice plenty of 420 in Santa Monica, such as at a recent concert on the Pier.  A friend also tells me that the bud is sprouting a-mighty in West Hollywood.

The little I think I know of the situation is that Continue reading L.A.’s Summer of Pot

Fit to be Tied in LA

PoserNote: It looks like Mrs. Lulu has snuck into the blogosphere again.

Once again I find myself in a dispute with LA Fitness’ business office.

[EDIT: I am in such strong agreement with Mrs. Lulu’s rant here that I’d love to see all our readers share their “my gym screwed me” stories in the comments. I think this is an industry-wide pattern of lying to– and screwing– customers. If you have an experience like Mrs. Lulu’s, read on & let us know. –Lucinda.]

The second time in my husband’s and my two year membership. The first time there was a problem was when he tried to quit his personal trainer contract after the so-called trial period was up. They simply ignored our written and phone requests and continued to bill my credit card. Even after speaking to one of their reps (not an easy feat to accomplish), two more months of illegitimate billing went by before I disputed the charges with my credit card company and got (partial) satisfaction. Continue reading Fit to be Tied in LA

Come join us on NeighborGoods!

I’m so excited to finally be able to announce this! For over a year now LA’s own Mickipedia has been trying to solve a problem and I think she came up with a fantastic solution with NeighborGoods!

logo_full_simpleWe all have stuff sitting around our houses that we bought for one specific need, then stuck in the closet and haven’t used since then. And how often does something come up where you need something like a powerdrill or a larger piece of luggage for one single use but dread the thought of spending the cash and then not needing it after wards? What NeighborGoods allows you to do is list those extra things you have that you aren’t using (an extra bike, a ladder, a waffle maker, etc) and then link up with your friends and share those items with them, as well as see what they have that you might need. I don’t own a ladder, and I know if I need one I’d much rather call a friend who has one, borrow it for a day, then give it back then spend the money on one and then have to figure out where to store it and let it sit there unused. NeighborGoods makes that possible on a whole new level.

The site is brand new, and only now slowly rolling out in Los Angeles. We’ve teamed up with them to allow all of our readers a chance to use it, skipping the beta application process, and jumping right in. We are one of the first to offer our own group that you can join when signing up that will link you with other LA Metblogs folks so you have a network of contacts and people to share with right out of the gate. The site is really smart and you can be very specific about who you want to share with, and who can see what you have to offer. And if you don’t really want to share, but have extra stuff you want to give away or sell you can do that as well.

As someone who is constantly trying to minimize possessions and fight the endless war on clutter I think this idea is amazing and has a chance to do some real good in all of our lives, as well as help on a larger level by reducing the extra crap we all keep consuming. I’m really excited to have this opportunity to share this with everyone, and can’t wait to see how popular it gets. Here’s the link to our group where you can sign up. Give it a shot!

Grand Avenue Festival Canceled for 2009

logo_GAF Last night, I learned that this year’s Grand Avenue Festival is on hiatus so that the organizers can do some restructuring. From their website:

The Grand Avenue Partners, the association of organizations responsible for the annual Grand Avenue Festival, have decided to place the 2009 festival on hiatus and direct their collective efforts on assessing needs and possibly re-inventing the festival for 2010 and beyond.

Many of the Grand Avenue-based arts and cultural institutions featured in the Festival will continue to offer low-cost or free programming on Saturday, September 26, 2009 as well as offer ongoing community programs throughout the year.

A shame, to be sure. It’s is always nice to be able to wander Grand Avenue and take in performances from The Colburn School on over to the Cathedral. There were activities for kids, from creating art to making music and of course, all the food.

In fairness, last year’s event wasn’t exactly a fun time.  It was ridiculously hot, but no shade available. This led to the indoor events being overcrowded.  Many vendors neglected to show up, so there were many empty booths. Not to mention that despite all of the food vendors, there was no place for people to sit and eat. I can only hope that they event organizers are focusing on fixing these problems.

As for events this weekend, a quick glance at the calendars show only paid events. I’ve contacted people at some of the facilities and no one has any knowledge of free or ‘low-cost or free programming on Saturday, September 26, 2009’. I’ll update once I get more information.

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Daylight Come And Me Wanna Count Bikes

So in case it didn’t blip on your radar, the LA County Bike Coalition (LACBC) is staging the first-ever official Los Angeles Bike & Pedestrian Count this week. In the grand scheme of the city’s transportation issues, this may seem like a whole bunch of nothing much, but trust me, this count is a never-done-before big deal whose hard data can be put to use not only to demonstrate that people do walk and bike in L.A., but more importantly to encourage cyclist and pedestrian inclusion in urban planning.

bikzWith all the commuter cycling I do I figured I’d better step up and volunteer my services as a tallyman. So I visited the LA Bike Count website, picked a time and an intersection, printed out the necessary forms and instructions, and arrived at the interesection of 8th and La Brea at 7 a.m. this morning to spend the next 2.5 hours adding up the walkers and the pedalers.

By the time 9:30 a.m. rolled around I’d finished up with 141 pedestrians and 58 cyclists (23 of whom rode on the sidewalks; 22 without helmets; 5 of them female; and 1 dude who was actually smoking a cigarette and riding in flipflops — I try not to judge but what the hell is up with that?).

I deviated from my usual route home this evening to drop off the results to the LACBC’s headquarters on Spring Street downtown, and though my work is done if you’re reading this suddenly jonesing to get your tally on and help with this historic process (that may or may not include the occasional nicotine-addicted hipster pedaling around in a poor choice of footwear), you can help this Saturday from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. So scope out some intersections found on this map, and if there’s one that’s in need of a counter, contact the LACBC’s Yogi Hendlin to find out if it’s still available.

Win Tix to Autolux with Mini Mansions Friday Sept. 25

autoluxLocal atmospheric rock act Autolux brings it back home with this show at the El Rey, and we’ve got a pair of tickets to give away! To win, leave a comment telling me about your favorite local act you wish would get national acclaim (links if you have ’em, too).

Info on the show is here, if you’d like to buy tickets & would rather not take your chances with my capricious whims.

Win Tix to The Dodos with the Ruby Suns on Sunday

DodosThe brainchild of Meric Long, The alterna-folk Dodos are known for their creative instrumentation (Logan Kroeber has no bass drum in his drum kit and Keaton Snyder, the newest Dodo, plays vibraphone). This Sunday they’ll be playing the El Rey with fellow indy rockers, The Ruby Suns, whose latest album, Sea Lion, includes ukulele and pots and pans, along with some more conventional instruments. Rounding out the trio of fun is the really lovely Sian Alice Group, who are described variously as “art rock,” “avante-garde,” and “post-rock.” It’s a show you’ll want to be on time for. All three bands are great. And you’re in luck, we have a pair of tickets we’re dying to give away. Just tell us in the comments what unconventional instrument you’d play in your fantasy band.

Get details on the show and purchase tickets here.

Classic Eats On Hiatus Until January 2010

classiceatsI know you’ve all been waiting with bated breath for the “save the date” announcement for the next Classic Eats event. Alas, we’ll have to wait for a while longer. Starting next week I will be out of town until December and as December is generally packed full of holiday events, we’ll hold off until January and celebrate the new year with Classic Eats #9.

Thanks for all the great evenings we’ve had in 2009 and keep making your suggestions for places to visit in 2010!

Be a Party Animal and Support 826LA

Kindle's 826LA used through a Creative Commons license
Kindle's 826 LA used through a Creative Commons license

If I had more money than I do, I’d spend some of it buying a $75 ticket to go see Where the Wild Things Are at the Arclight October 1 and help raise funds for 826LA, the coolest tutoring center around. Spike Jonze, Dave Eggers, Catherine Keener and Max Records will all be there for a Q&A afterward. And if I had a lot more money than I do, I’d go all out and pay $200 to go to the afterparty as well and help 826LA even more. Check it out.

Take Your Dog To The Movies! ReelDog Film Fest This Weekend!

ReeldoglogyoutubeThe ReelDog Film Fest is your chance to check out some canine-centric short films with your dog in a fun outdoor setting, all while helping a great cause. This unique festival benefits PAWS/LA, an organization that assists low-income seniors and people with chronic or life-threatenting illnesses in keeping and caring for their pets. PAWS/LA is currently serving 2000+ people keep and care for more than 1700 animals.

The event is this Saturday night in Cheviot Hills Park. People and their dogs are welcome to picnic in the park before the movies and visit the various vendors who will be catering to furry companions. Tickets are $10 per person and are available at the box office starting at 6pm. Children under 12 and dog are admitted for free. The screening of approximately 1 hours of shorts will begin at sundown. I went to a similar event a few years ago and had a blast, as did my dog Rusty.

My dog, Rusty, enjoying Dogfest, a similar event @ The Autry in 2006, which also raised money for PAWS/LA

Cheviot Hills Park is located at 2551 Motor Ave. in Los Angeles (near Century City). For more information, contact [email protected] or call (323)464-7297 x113.

More on Tomorrow’s Election

Theresa Thompson's picture used through Creative Commons
Theresa Thompson's picture used through Creative Commons

Tammara inspired me to chime in about the election for the 2nd District City Council seat, not because I favor her candidate so much (I don’t–I think I’m for Sanchez, myself) but because it is an important election and I know the turn out will be low and that always makes me sad. Here’s how the City Clerk’s site explains the job of the city council:

The Council is the governing body of the City, except as otherwise provided in the Charter, and enacts ordinances subject to the approval or veto of the Mayor. It orders elections, levies taxes, authorizes public improvements, approves contracts, and adopts traffic regulations. The Council adopts or modifies the budget proposed by the Mayor and provides the necessary funds, equipment, and supplies for the budgetary departments. The Council confirms or rejects appointments proposed by the Mayor and prescribes duties of boards and officers not defined by Charter.

It’s the governing body of the city, people, and this is one of only 15 seats. Continue reading More on Tomorrow’s Election