Friday, April 30, 2010

May Day Doo Dah 2010 - Parade Time Distortion

I know this is gonna confuse people. The Pasadena Doo Dah Parade is this Saturday. For real. No, it is not December. No there won't be a good reason or justification for the 11 a.m. champagne style orange juice inoculation.

Change is good. Just takes a bit of getting use to.

DooDah 2010
Still, goodness knows how Fester is going to tolerate the increase in temperature. Not to mention the Country Gentlemen, The Dead Robert Palmer Girls or the Bastard Sons of Lee Marvin:



The ancients and the crusties have fond memories of hot dogs and tortillas floating in the air. (Uh, don't bring tortillas to the parade. The 1990s have passed my friend.) Many of the parade's four footed participants especially liked the hot dogs that found there way to a liberated pound puppy.

Ditto on not bringing the hot dogs.

So here is the deal. Don't take your love to town or Old Town Pasadena cuz the parade isn't there anymore. They moved it to East Pasadena. Hey, if any place needs a parade it is East Pasadena!

The exact location is 2627 E. Colorado Blvd. 91107 between Altadena and San Gabriel Blvd. Bring your own lawn chairs, pillows, and blankets. There is a Denny's near by and I'm sure there are other stuff that needs to be discovered in East Pasadena.

According to the web site you can be sure that some of the following kinda sorta will appear:

  • Queen Erica Valentine,
  • The Electric Squirrels,
  • Martinis in the Morning,
  • Howdy Krishna,
  • Stupidiotic Evolution,
  • Mystik Krewe d’Dieux Dah,
  • Zombies of Debt,
  • Flying Baby
  • Street Racing and Stroller Cross,
  • Men of Leisure,
  • LA Derby Dolls,
  • Dead Robert Palmer Girls,
  • Drunk in the Garage and god knows who else but I think they be some pirates and parrots a foot.
For the Green among you take the Foothill 187 and walk. Or take Metro 181 if you can find it and then hoof it to the festivities.

Whoa, I just found out that Pooh Bah Records is in the area! I wondered where they disappeared to. In the name of vinyl you gotta go.

That's the Hell of It - The Finally Friday Freekout

There is too dang much stuff going on, I can't keep up with the amount of retro-stupidity and political power given to intellectually challenged people. Willfully and proudly the legislatures of Oklahoma and Arizona have provided the country with the WTF moments of the month.

I would be remiss to leave out the SEC Executive Poonastic Posse. Giving new meaning to the belief that it is good to have a government job. Might have to rename the sucker something like the Securities and Erection Commission.

The fellas certainly paid more attention to their ding-a-lings than to being attentive to people participating in the financial melt down of the country.



Anyway, I'm thinking that the people responsible for this crap will be on their way out or gone.

I am repeating that as affirming petition of hope. I give you Mr. Paul William singing a song that was in the closing credits of Phantom of the Paradise. This clip isn't from that movie but from the Brady Bunch Musical Variety Hour and the Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys Mysteries.

This is the trailer for the movie:



Yeah, I know. It just keeps getting freakier and we don't do drugs. Deep breaths, love good people (but not on the job ok?) and start saving vegitable seeds because we might be in for a civil disturbance or two.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

L.A. City Hall Protest - Day 7 Videoblogging Week 2010

Phew! I did it! Seven days, seven videos. I did not expect to end with this kind of recording. I was heading to Little Tokyo to check out the sights via the Gold Line extension. There are a lot of interesting things to see but you had to pay to get into the museums and restaurants.

You don't want to know how hard it is to record video in museums and restaurants on the QT. You can't. So I'm walking around and I keep seeing helicopters at City Hall. Nobody hangs out at L.A. City Hall on a Saturday unless there is a protest or something.

I first thought that it was an immigration rights protest but they know that to get TV air time they have to block traffic during the week.

I mosey on over and sure enough there is a bunch of people and police officers at City Hall. I scope out the action for a bit because (a) I do not like being anywhere near a potential police event and (b) I needed to know who was against what. There is no sense in wandering into a group of people who are primed to deliver a beat down.



Since this is Los Angeles you never know from where the beat down will come from. I still remember MacArthur Park and the police whacking on journalists, TV journalists with cameras rolling.

Yes, caution is advised.

I am not a journalist. I never claimed to be one and they wouldn't have me anyway. The fact that I bear witness to an event and record what I see make some of them queasy. I understand but I gotta do what I gotta do which is to walk into the crowd and try to figure out what is going on.

I saw all kinds of signs. There were supporters of the group wanting to take their country back. Not implying Tea Party affiliation just saying what I saw like one or two Obama caricatures of a negative nature.

There were others that wanted to reclaim the land for Mexico or Spain; not sure about that one. Actual Socialists were present trying to promote their point of view.

Anarchists and related supporters were there to encourage the downfall of everything so that it could be rebuild in their image. Everybody was talking so loud you couldn't hear what anyone said. I do know there were cameras and camcorders everywhere.

Seeing how I was height impaired I started to leave. All I was seeing was signs and the back of people's necks. I look over across the street and saw a sign. I go on over and talk to the gentleman for a bit. He smiles at me and I smile right back.

I asked him why is he the only one that has a sign about love. He said people keep coming up to him and asking him the same question. I point over yonder to the cacophony and said it might be a hard sell over there.

He knew that which is why he was across the street at the police station. Wasn't necessarily safer but easier to extract himself if necessary.

We both agreed that observing the hands of the officers was a good way to decide when it was time to go. If they are somewhat relaxed things are ok. When they as a group start to stoke something, a flashlight or baton, it is time to make that move.

I said goodbye and headed for the train station. Inside of the station it was like there wasn't anything happening out of the ordinary. All I had to do was cross the street and walk two blocks north to be in a different place.

Life is like that around here.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Letter Poem - Day 6 Videoblogging Week 2010

Mike Moon has a great Day 6 post and I certainly want to encourage folks to wander over to A Moment At Mike Moon's Moon Echos.

Me? Yeah. I have something. Not as good as Mike's. No where near as good as Mike's but I had an situation where I had the ringer of the phone off because of the carpet telemarketer and I missed a call.



Dude, call me back!

I digress. It gave me an idea to write a quick poem and see what I could come up with to channel my anger at people who have no respect for the concept of "Not freaking interested!" In carpet cleaning. Really talking about carpet cleaning phone calls. And telemarketers in general and specifically that bi-vocal robot who someday will be brought up on charges.

I am in Que Sera Sera mode about the missed call. I am firm in my conviction that the robo-calling machine should be used as target practice.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Signs of the Discarded - Day 5 Videoblogging Week 2010

It is day five, I think of Videoblogging Week 2010 and for this outing I'm going for poetry, conceptual and bring your own meaning to the party.



We see and we don't see. This is what I saw and have seen.
Not much more to say.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Julie Morgan's Pasadena YWCA - Day 4 Videoblogging 2010

There are some people that are trying to erase portions of history that they don't like. There are others that are trying desperately to discover what they never have been told. Mainly by the people trying to pretend the other group does not exist.

The Pasadena YWCA building was designed by Julia Morgan. She was the first woman in California to have an architecture license. I did not know that she designed and worked on Hearst Castle/San Simeon as well as having designed and built 700 other buildings.



I volunteered in this building so I have a small, tiny connection to it. It was a place of overstuffed couches and long tables. It it where I saw a proto-version of the world wide web (It didn't work very well if at all.) The steps creaked and the noise of children was a constant reminder not to take life so seriously.

I remembered I hated going to the bathroom. It was so small. It might have been a latter day retro-fit but it was creepy especially at night.

Other than that it was a place where women came with their children to find work, exercise, have a bit of community and that is in addition to all the other YWCA stuff.

Because of the earthquakes and the cost of rehabilitation the building had to be closed. Once in a while there would be an art exhibit but I don't think they even do that any more.

Last I heard the city is about ready to tear it down. So goes another piece of womenfolk's history.

More on Julie Morgan:

California Museum Hall of Fame Inductee Page

Julia Morgan.org

California State Polytechnic University Special Library Collection on Julia Morgan

Music and Art at One Colorado - Day 3 Videoblogging Week 2010

Music is powerful. It pulled me into the Pasadena Student & Faculty Art Show that was happening at One Colorado. This is a short clip on following the music and seeing where it leads you.



Here is the thing. I know many artists are sensitive about having their work recorded. I should have moved in closer to some of the work but I was in non-confrontation mode. I have to say some of them didn't seem like they wanted anything but a sale.

It is understandable.

I don't know who the musicians are but they are probably students at the California College of Music or so the sign said in back of the group.

Three days of videoblogging completed and five to go. To find others who are vlogging this week go to Twitter and use the hash tag #VBW2010

Monday, April 12, 2010

Tranquility Alley - Day 2 Videoblogging Week 2010

Videoblogging will lead you to interesting places and concepts. It is very educational. I learned something that I did not know before making this video. Watch the video on my parking garage inspired blues and then we'll talk.



For those that can't see the video I was asked to leave the alley because I was recording the parking structure. The reason given was that the building was copyrighted and the architects didn't want the building recorded for others to copy.

That can't be right. I'd have to check. The whole freaking parking garage that is in public view? I don't think so.

Can you copyright a parking garage structure? A building? I need to know because I don't want to think I know something when I don't.

I found this at Cornell University Law School's U.S. Code Title 17, Chapter 1, Section 17 (8)

Copyright protection subsists, in accordance with this title, in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. Works of authorship include the following categories:

(1) literary works;
(2) musical works, including any accompanying words;
(3) dramatic works, including any accompanying music;
(4) pantomimes and choreographic works;
(5) pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works;
(6) motion pictures and other audiovisual works;
(7) sound recordings; and
(8) architectural works.

I'll be danged! Seriously? Hold on Sherman there is more...

(a) Pictorial Representations Permitted.— The copyright in an architectural work that has been constructed does not include the right to prevent the making, distributing, or public display of pictures, paintings, photographs, or other pictorial representations of the work, if the building in which the work is embodied is located in or ordinarily visible from a public place.


Ah Ha! I did have the right to record and take pictures of the building! Sure I can understand the recorded plans and the architectural documents being copyrighted. That would make sense. But the actual constructed building? Seems like an inspiration killer to me.

I can't hate on right livelihood. The folks that made the Pedi-Foot-Scraping thing knows the power of a knockoff. Still, you can't hide a public building. People will see it.

If the guy said that this was private property I could understand. But there was no sign or notice that this was a private area. And what is the sense of building a quiet place if you can't share it with a couple hundred, eh, dozen, a few friends?

Virtually speaking of course.

So there you have it; your educationally inspired vlog post of the day. Who knew?

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Videoblogging Day 1 - 2010 Lemonade Thoughts

I am so running late on things. It looks like it is going to rain, I'm still futzing with not one but two video editing programs and really this isn't how I imagined this day.

Things are still going wrong but I have to leave otherwise more things will go wrong. Like the viewing size of this video.



But it is finished. The goal of day one has been completed.

Where are my shoes? The 8GB card? The padded pouch?

It was supposed to be ... different. Organized. Things going according to plan. The one in my head. This is why I was listing to a podcast about Getting Things Done and poo-pooing the whole thing.

Just have to limit the things to do, right?

No. I guess not.

Friday, April 09, 2010

In My Name on the Finally Friday Freakout

I just found out that MTV has music videos on the MTV web site. And that they are embeddable. Why am I the last to know these things? The old skool and new wave are in peaceful co-existence with the hippy de hop.



This is important if you gronk up Big Daddy Kane, The Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs and Wil I Am. Speaking of which this is a video with said Am and Angelique Kidjoe asking for peace, In My Name.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Menlo Park Adult School Closing Protest From Jose Lara

Budget cuts are no joke. School budget cuts are expensive in the short and long term. Jose Lara from Intersections - The South Los Angeles Report has a video report on why area residents feel strongly that the adult school should remain open. This is a captioned video but it takes a bit to kick in:



You want an adult school in your community. Immigrant communities need access to education, the ability to ask questions and to tap into resources. An adult school gives second and third chances.

Education reduces crime by providing training and other options beside negative entrepreneurship; i.e. selling items that are not legal for consumption or were not yours to sell in the first place.

The questions we don't ask are just as important as the ones we do. Where did all that bond money go to?

Education is getting slammed hard in California. This is another kick to the system.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Learning About the Information Gap From Jeff Monday

I discovered a new to me web site called Monday Dots. The subtitle of Jeff Monday's site is modeling complexity with dots. I should have turned tailed and run but no.

I moused around a bit and viewed this video:

mind the information gap from jeff monday on Vimeo.



I can't stop thinking about how we do this; how we increase the size and the difficulty of learning and communicating to each other. Why do we continue to do the things we do? Why do we look at a changing world the same old way?

Why is dogma more important than collectively solving a problem? When I say we I do mean me. I just remembered something I did on Friday that was retro-communicative to another person.

You know what is scary? I'm not going to learn everything I intended as a kid. I did want to learn everything. I might have to re-think that goal.

In the meantime, how do I incorporate this concept into my current knowledge bank? In communicating or involuntary teaching opportunities?

And for those of us that are polygons (you gotta watch the video) does this mean a lifetime of extra sensitivity to the others who are preconditioned to be fearful of the different?

Time to flip the switch and read pulp tech. I've gotta sleep on this one.

Watching the Hype - No Tablet Today

I feel like the sadder but wiser gal. I see the gleam in the eyes of people that want to buy the new shiny toy. The reasons that become needs. The new Apple Table is like a siren song. I have my ears blocked for the moment.

I understand. Once you get bit by equipment lust it is hard to fight the infection. I have bought enough computers and peripherals to know the yearning that becomes consumption. If I'm spending cash money I need to know it is a good investment or I will derive such pleasure that it doesn't matter.

It is a conscious choice. It took me 18 months to decide on a netbook. I'm happy with what I have. Currently I have the Ubuntu operating system on the netbook. I'm about to swap that out to try Linux Mint.

And that is why I have a problem with the Apple Tablet. I would be totally locked into the Apple operating system. I can't experiment or branch out.

Now I love and seriously jonesing for some of the applications for the iPod/iPhone/Tablet. Especially the photographic and video editing options coming down the road. I have iTunes and use it.



I'm not an Apple hater. It is just that I require more than hardware. It is the software that enables creativity, not just passivity. Dan from CNet makes a really good case about how the Apple Tablet is not a computer. It is an enhanced media device that will serve in specific situations.

Just like desktops didn't disappear when notebook computers arrived and just like they are still here after netbooks. It is making room for another bit of kit.

It sure is pretty. Yep. No question.

I'll wait for the technology and the device to mature. I will not pay money to be a Beta tester.

Not now, not ever.

Friday, April 02, 2010

T.A.M.I. and Smokey on the Finally Friday Freakout

Let me set the scene for you. You are in a movie theater on a Saturday afternoon. After a couple of cartoons and a movie short feature and just before the main attraction you get to watch a recording of The T.A.M.I. Show.

It just so happens that every time I couldn't scrounge up fifty cents was the very time the movie house would show the flick.

Yeah, I've never seen it. I had to listen to people tell me about second hand. No VHS of it that I know of, not even bootleg.

Not that I condone that kinda thing. I don't. Really.

Just saying. No bootleg action. The real reason it took so long was to work out the rights and ownership issues. Um, this translates into who was gonna get paid and how much if anything at all. Not just the on-screen performers but the producers, backers and anybody else that had a piece of paper saying "pay me."

It took them 40+ years but they finally worked it out. This is a glorious time. The DVD is out and if you have any affection for James Brown singing Night Train or Please, Please, Please you might want to check it out.

If your bones find themselves twitching to Chuck Berry's Maybellene or even some dudes from across the creek singing Time is On My Side then you might want to pick-up on this until now impossible recording of the T.A.M.I. Show.

If you check out the Wikipedia page you can get the full line up of pop, rock, R&B and Soul acts. One of those is performers is Smokey Robinson and the Miracles.



In this particular clip folks get a chance to see Claudette Robinson match the fellas step by step in heels. It is a great example of what these performers did on the road and in theaters across the country. (Update: This clip is not from The T.A.M.I Show but an example of what people experienced when they went to places like The Apollo.)

The photo links to the Turner Movie Classics store but Amazon has it as well. On the Amazon page there is a video clip of the Beach Boys, for those of that persuasion. I don't judge, live and let live I say.

I don't get a flat nickle for plugging it either way. This is more of a public service announcement that this is a memory we want to pass along.

TGIF and pass the popcorn.