Get Spun With Metblogs TODAY in Venice

intelliveniceThat would be Venice, CA (to my hidden disappointment)…but I’m not disappointed we’ll all be meeting up over demitasse cups at Intelligentsia Coffee Bar in that boho little seaside town. Because Intelligentsia has the best espresso I’ve enjoyed since I was…well, since I was in Venice, Italy.

Come on out & say hi at 4pm this afternoon! Bonner has hooked us up with the intelligentsia of Intelligentsia, who will be firing up the legendary 1972 La Marzocco machine just for us.

Intelligentsia Coffee Bar of Venice, CA, aka Intellivenice: website | map

Think Locally, Act Aquatically

IMG_1574Jesus may have walked on water, but, during the next few days, you can walk — or ride — over it. First, the Marina Del Rey Water Bus ends its summer run on Labor Day, September 7.  I took the Bus across the Marina Harbor on July 4th, with an actual destination, but it’s a total and picturesque blast just to get on it and buzz around the Harbor.  We saw and waved (local hipsters, if such people exist in the Marina, flash the peace sign.  horizontal like.  from outside in) at a bunch of people partying on their docked boats.  We even saw seals basking on the docks!  And the Water Bus only costs a buck each way!  You can get on and off at a bunch of stops (see website).  In fact, you could even take the Water Bus on Sunday afternoon, and then walk down Abbott Kinney (about a mile) and meet up with the L.A. Metbloggers and friends for coffee at Intelligentsia! I may do just that.  So forget those pricey, snooty cruise boats that go to Catalina or into the Bay or whatever where you have to get dressed up and drink Chardonnay and listen to lite jazz.  The Water Bus is where it’s at baby!
Click for more wet fun

Marathon screenings of “SICKO” and free health screenings on Labor Day

labordaywithouthealthcareSEIU-ULTCW’s “Healthy Works Fair + Film + Action” event is taking place Labor Day (9/7) with the centerpiece of the day being marathon screenings of “SICKO.”

If you missed this 2007 documentary by Michael Moore, you should absolutely catch it. Extremely timely and relevant with the raging debates over Healthcare Reform, the film investigates the American health care system, focusing on its health insurance and pharmaceutical industry. It also compares the for-profit, non-universal U.S. system with the non-profit universal health care systems of Canada, the United Kingdom, France and Cuba. After each movie screening, a panel discussion is scheduled with a variety of influential and engaged folks including Laphonza Butler, Congresswoman Judy Chu, Dr. Paul Song, Jose Gonzales, Dr. Toni Lews, Jack Dannibale, Assemblymember Mike Eng, Dr. Rishi Manchanda, Councilwoman Jaque Robinson, Dr. Rishi Manchanda, and more.

Aside from the movie, you can also check out free health screenings/care, rooftop DJs, free stuff, games, and other activities… in an air conditioned venue!

As Congress heads back to DC on Tuesday to continue engaging in a debate on Healthcare Reform that has been erupting fires among citizens all across the country, you owe it to yourself to get informed. If you’re confused about the issues — and let’s face it — there is a lot of information and MISinformation out there, why not take this opportunity to get active in communicating with our leaders before they go?

SEIU-ULTCW’s “Healthy Works Fair + Film + Action” event
Sept. 07.09. 10AM – 6PM
@ Downtown Independent Theater
251 S. Main Street, Los Angeles, California 90012

SICKO screens at 10AM, 12:30PM, and 3:00PM

Saber’s World Famous LA River piece buffed


What you are looking at above is a piece by Los Angeles graffiti artist Saber. But it’s not just any piece, it’s a massive an insanely famous piece. In fact, it holds the Guinness Book of World Records title for being the largest “wild style” piece in the world. Painted in 1997, it took 35 nights and over 125 gallons of latex paint to create. It’s visible on Google Maps and in the world of well know graffiti pieces this is always one of the first mentioned. And now it’s gone.

The piece used to be located on a stretch of the LA Rive in the southeast corner of downtown, arguably a boring, plain, even ugly and run down part of the city. The piece was almost impossible to see without actually climbing into the river bed (I know, I went there specifically to see it a few years ago) and was like a bright, colorful hidden treasure in a bleak and gray part of town. And suddenly for unexplained reasons someone in the city felt it was a justifiable expense (in this economy!) to pay city workers to destroy it. As shocking as this is, it’s not the first time world renowned public works of art in LA have been destroyed with no explanation. You see, this is why we can’t have anything nice.

Who needs LACMA? Not “Los Angeles Plays Itself” nor “Reptilicus”

cinema_kerfuffleNot to be a fashionably-late party pooper, but I don’t get the ongoing cinematic kerfuffle concerning LACMA’s weekend film series. LACMA canned their program due to a shrinking audience, and then thousands of individuals, including director Martin Scorcese, expressed dismay at the decision by the County-run museum to slight its hometown’s heritage. I understand that argument on a symbolic level, and I’m glad the museum plans to relaunch a revived series, but even without LACMA, Los Angeles would still have a plethora of venues to see screen gems, rarities and oddities. Which may partly account for some of that shrinking audience.

Some of my favorite venues include the UCLA Film & Television Archive, the Silent Movie Theatre, the New Beverly Cinema and the American Cinematheque (which is screening the any-self-respecting-Angeleno-and-cinema-lover-must-see Los Angeles Plays Itself this weekend at the Aero Theatre, with director Thom Anderson in person on Sunday). People literally line up around the block to see screenings at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. And let’s not forget the screenings that the American Film Institute, the Academy, the Los Angeles Film Festival and heck, even the Natural History Museum (which is screening Reptilicus this Sunday as the final film in its B-Movies and Bad Science summer series) offer every year.

Images: Title screen of Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003) and a poster (detail) for Repticilus (1961).

Classic Eats #7 Wrap Up: Reel Inn

reelinn1After a long hot day, what a refreshing evening of cool breezes, salty air and fresh fish we had at The Reel Inn last Saturday night! Thanks to all who came out to partake of the fun and fish and festive company. There was surfing trivia and Primo beer, and I personally was stoked.

Mohans, a Metblog author from Dublin staying in Cali for a few months, made it up from Irvine for the event, yay for him! We also had some other first timers to Classic Eats – welcome Shannon, hopefully the regulars didn’t scare you off the next one.  Burns! and Mr. Hooks — you were both missed.

Thanks again for a fun, low key, hot summer night!

Look for Classic Eats #8 coming in a few short weeks…more on that in another post.

More pix after the jump.

Continue reading Classic Eats #7 Wrap Up: Reel Inn

Limo gets stuck in the Hollywood Hills, blocks traffic


My usual shortcut around Highland traffic was impeded by this limo, whose front fender had gotten stuck on a curb. His attempts to back out of the trap only caused the back tires to spin and burn rubber. (map)

All the while, the passengers would poke their heads out occasionally, express frustration at the driver, then hide whenever they saw someone taking a photo – which included almost everyone, like me, who had to make a u-turn and reroute.

(Which of course is typical Hollywood: while dozens of people heading to or from work were inconvenienced, most saw the humor in it. The pampered passengers inside the airconditioned limo, however, did nothing but complain.)

More Songs About Buildings, Food and Wine

BanditwineIt may be a bit late in the outdoor concert/picnic season to mention this, but I re-stumbled upon Bandit wine, sold in resealable Tetra Pak cartons, at Silver Lake Wine this week, although they’ve had it for at least a year. Most times I go in there, it’s for wine for a dinner party, either my own or for a friend’s, so I’ve always ruled it out.

So yesterday, after a trip to Rockaway Records on Glendale where I scored a CD of the 2nd Talking Heads album, “More Songs About Buildings and Food,” for $6,  I thought I would pop into SLW, in the same building, to celebrate my purchase with a bottle of wine. (Here’s to 1978!)

And there it was. A lime-green carton with a jumble of fonts, clunky rounded off corners, a price sticker that read $7.75.

I asked the wine guy, “How is it?” Continue reading More Songs About Buildings, Food and Wine

I love ARMOgedon 2057

art helvetica a

art exhibit2.0

I stumbled across the work of ARMOgedon 2057 while skimming new stuff on Wooster Collective. I was blown away and it’s been a while since I’ve seen something that grabbed me as quickly as this did. I was excited to learn he is a Los Angeles based artist and even better than he has a new show opening in LA later this month. Being a typography nerd, seeing some of those elements pulled into paintings of this nature was really exciting and I can’t wait to see more.

Nine Inch Nails Cancels Music Box Show

Nine Inch Nails' final show? Photo by Burns!
Nine Inch Nails' final show? Photo by Burns!

BREAKING: Nine Inch Nails cancels tonight’s show at the Music Box at the Fonda Theater.

Were you one of the lucky ones that saw Nine Inch Nails’ show at the Palladum last night? Are you, like me, one of the incredibly disappointed fans holding tickets for tonight’s (canceled) show at the Fonda?

By most accounts, last night’s show at the Palladium was a spectacular beginning to what were to be the final four shows (ever) for Nine Inch Nails. Among other highlights, the band played “The Downward Spiral” album its entirety and electronic music pioneer Gary Numan joined the band to play his hit, “Cars.”

Front-man Trent Reznor complained during the show of having a cold, though, and immediately following the show the band’s official website,, released this statement:

We’re very sorry to announce that Trent is ill, and on his doctor’s orders we will not be able to perform tonight’s show at the Henry Fonda Theater. This is the only information we have at this time, we’re posting this early announcement as a convenience for those of you who had plans to attend. Reimbursement details will be posted as soon as we figure them out; likely within the next 24 hours. We wish this wasn’t necessary and we’re very sorry for the inconvenience. Thank you for your understanding.”

“…sorry for the inconvenience?” More like colossal disappointment.

As the statement says, no further information at this time. The announcement made no mention of the status of Saturday and Sunday’s shows at the Wiltern and EchoPlex. An eternal optimist, I’ll hope for a rescheduled Fonda show on Monday, but that doesn’t sound too likely.

Update: An update as of 5:00pm Thursday. Follow me past the jump for news.

Continue reading Nine Inch Nails Cancels Music Box Show

Wee But Tasty: Chatsworth/Porter Ranch Farmers’ Market

Click for my full photoset.
Click for my full photoset.

When Chatsworth isn’t on fire, it’s actually kind of neat. And so far since this northwest corner of the Valley has escaped fire season (crosses fingers, knocks on wood, kisses rabbit’s foot), you should venture on out this Saturday & check out their adorable farmers’ market in the parking lot at the sylvan St. Stephen Presbyterian Church, where willowy eucalyptus bends over the farm stands and the vendors’ kids run around & play on the grass.

It’s small, but there are enough fruit & veggie vendors to create a diverse selection of produce, from cactus fruit (“fruta di nopales,” said the lady, attempting to communicate with me despite my limited Spanish) to brilliantly colored white and yellow peaches, nectarines, pluots and strawberries.

My favorite booth has to be the one from Shabazz Bakery, though, staffed by what I’m guessing were the only African-American people in all of Chatsworth that day, serving up carrot pie, navy bean pie and pecan pie from 60-year-old recipes. My mom & I, who were spending a lazy Saturday afternoon together, were blown back by the samples they gave us and we bought two pies each to take home.

Chatsworth / Porter Ranch Certified Farmers’ Market: 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., St. Stephen Presbyterian Church Parking Lot, 20121 Devonshire St. (cross street is Winnetka Ave.)

God started fires with flammable gay juices

With an About the Author bio that says, “If you don’t like what you just read here you can just get out of my country. Now how about that smart-alack. Follow me on twitters,” Christwire is such dry parody it almost passes for the real thing– a right-wing,  Bible-quoting site seeking to save America from The Gays and other “weirdos.”

And they are loving the fires here in California:

The lands were soaked with the combustible sins of perversions and marinated in the flammable juices of homosexuality! God is angry and his great power cannot be contained! …Fire falls upon California and great pillars of smoke shoots from his nostrils!

The holy pillars of smoke from his nostrils are filling up the lands of California! They are the harbingers of doom for the homosexual gay fornicators of Satan!

If you doubt this is satire (which is easy to do because Christwire has real ads for things like Ann Coulter books and a dating service called Christian Mingle,) a recent post called If You’re a Fantastic Pro-Family Republican, Does One or Two Same-Sex Encounters Really Make You Gay? asks, “If you have a great record fighting against the gays, doesn’t it cross out a few moments humping a younger man against the wall of some hotel room?”