Friday, January 29, 2016

Malibu morning picture of the day - Friday, January 29, 2016

Dear Family, Friends, and Gentle Readers,

We've come to the end of another week, and we close out with a blue-on-blue kind of day, but with some morning surface haziness.

It's been pleasant Southern California winter days, dry and ranging in the 70s. Still waiting for El Nino Storm #4 to show up someday ... I suppose once it gets going, we'll be in the "Pineapple Express" season, or at least that's what everyone is predicting.

In the meantime, we'll just have to put up with skies that look like this for a little while longer.

I was out much of the daylight hours junking my trusty 1995 Nissan Maxima yesterday, so I didn't get a chance to push Thursday's art out to you. Some of you did bother to look regardless. Thanks for checking in.

When I get rid of a car it's pretty darn inoperable, but this one was an exception. I probably could have squeezed several thousand more miles out of her if I were willing to pay over an estimated $1K for needed repairs to get her to run on all 6 cylinders (only 5 were firing) but you could get her to the grocery store and back.

But she left oil wherever she was parked and smoke would rise from the hood at stop lights, so I figured it was time at the ripe old age of 243,000, about half of which I put on her. The Great State of California gave me $1K to get her off the road and so I took "Frieda" to an approved "organ donation" site out in Sun Valley. I gave them the keys but there it's not really a necessity; they move cars about via forklift.

We were never really a great fit together. It's funny how you always feel like a stranger in some cars. They're just NOT an extension of you. But we made it work. She never let me down or left me stranded and I took care of all mechanical ills before they got bad. That's the secret, really.

As a parting shot, let me share some sunsets shots taken a couple days ago. When I left work Wednesday night, the sky was especially vermilion and it made the water a peculiar shade of warm grey-blue. I just had to snap off pictures. These do NOT get that unique blue color of the water right, but they hint at it.

And with that, have yourself a nice Friday and a great weekend.


Thursday, January 28, 2016

iT'S STreeTarT THurSDay iN eaST HoLLyWooD! - Thursday, January 27, 2016

Why hello there Street Art Lovers,

There is a M-A-S-S-I-V-E mural that you encounter when you take the Glendale Freeway to its southern end, and it dumps you out onto Glendale Ave. It's monochromatic, sort of, in two colors if that makes sense. And I think it's an homage to early film making in Los Angeles. It feels cinematic. Good thing it's huge because I don't think you'd see it otherwise tearing down the street at 60 MPH.

Artist unattributed, Scenes from the Movie Capital, paint on warehouse.

I think this one is worth savoring in its pieces, so I'm going to dole out half this week and half next.

extreme left detail

just the right a bit ...

a little more to the right ...

and just a bit more ... ah! Our Hero and Leading Lady?

I'll betcha if I were a film buff, I could ID all of these visual quotes. It's like a collage of B&W still photos. They sure caught my eye.

This going up early and may not get a seascape attached because I will be taking my old car to the boneyard for old vehicles. The State of California is paying me $1,000 to get her off the road. It would cost me that much to get her next ailments fixed (bad fuel injectors and brakes), so it's time to part company. She's also incontinent (leaks lots of oil) and smokes.

But she served me well, Fair Frieda the 95 Maxima--little machine angels sing thee to thy rest. I named her that because the letters on her license plate HYK suggest the Austrian economist Friedrich Hayek. I think of cars as being female, so I always give them girl names--hence Frieda.

So, we're on autoload for 6 AM. Have a great Thursday all of you, and tune in next time for the conclusion of this really big painting.


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Malibu morning picture of the day - Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Dear Family, Friends, and Gentle Readers,

We've moved from clear blue skies to overcast greyness. Sort of like a premature jump into May or June today.

And there you have it. Take a look over toward the sun in the east and it's a little more colorful. I swear. This is what last Friday looked like, dintit?

I kinda like the pattern of the orange clouds down at mid-level--like a calico cat.

Can't linger and chat today. But hey, enjoy the view.


Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Malibu morning picture of the day - Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Dear Family, Friends, and Gentle Readers,

Our post is up late today, but again, it's blue on blue in the 70s out here on the Southern California coast. Left the house late and was in heavy traffic so I arrived at work embarrassingly late.

The punishing thing about being late to work at this employer is that the parking lot fills up and then you have to park down at the bottom of a hill and become even more late by waiting for a shuttle, or hike up the equivalent of 400 stairs.

Gotta run kiddies. See ya back here tomorrow.


All right, all right. Since you bothered to tune in today, let me give you this little teaser I found in Hollywood. I will photoshop her to be more visible at a later date, but she's worth a look now.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Malibu morning picture of the day - Monday, January 25, 2016

Dear Family, Friends, and Gentle Readers,

With so much extreme winter weather in the news today, I feel kind of bad to be posting pleasant readings here on the West Coast ... but here goes ...

Skies are clear, it's about 54 Fahrenheit, going up to 72 today, predicted sunny, not a single El Nino storm in sight. This was the view at 7 AM; sun had just come up, hiding behind that cloud.

Here's a second look.

And this morning at the pond in the park, there was a firetruck and an emergency helicopter waiting to take someone away, as you can see in the foreground. My employer makes for a very handy place in this part of the world to stage medevacs. It can take an hour plus to get anywhere from here during rush hours, so going by air is the best if your body cannot wait.

We all watched President Bill Clinton get out of chopper here and get into a limo once (could have been a body double for all we know). I imagine if Trump gets elected to the U.S. presidency, it'll be somewhat similar Hollywood-type administration, don't you?

My own feeling is that it was the excess and hubris of the Clinton era that led us into rude 9/11 awakening. Remember the so-called "peace dividend" and the Pax Americana? Yeah. Nobody told us those were credit purchases to be called out on shortly. Those of you who enjoy cyclical readings of history would probably enjoy looking at a book by Strauss and Howe called The Fourth Turning. According to them, we are in a period of "unraveling," which I think is about to end, but we'll see ... it's a viewpoint worthy of your time, and you will find you have been using many of the concepts they put forth adn terms they coined which have been absorbed into language and culture.

But I digress. It's time to pay the rent once again. Have a wonderful Monday and a great week!


PS: Still on the paleo diet, but haven't been able to remember to record my metrics. Joints are still doing better, although there was a relapse when I let some wheat breading on chicken get into the system for a couple of days. I'm disheartened that I could be THAT hypersensitive to any food substance, but we'll see once I start doing a measured reintroduction of food back into the diet.

Friday, January 22, 2016

"Expressionist Haircuts" and Malibu morning picture of the day - Friday, January 22, 2016

Dear Family, Friends, and Gentle Readers,

It's Friday, and while it's not quite "Red Sky at Morning," we do have atmospheric bending of light toward the red zone.

The shadow thick cloud overhead gives us this ominous appearance, it's not really. It's just the backlighting effect, the bane of photographers.

And here's your second look, which does give us a bit more blue. Let's go full column for contrast shall we?

Several months ago while I was taking a picture of a mural of a bicyclist parting the Red Sea (I kid you not, I'm debating whether it's worth posting ... we'll see) right across the street was a haircut joint with rather stained-glass, Georges Roualt inspired decoration on the facade.

It kind of falls in the boundaries of street art, but to me, in a way not, just because of the intention that I feel from it. It's fuzzy, you know. But I think it's pretty and self-conscious enough for me to share here.

Artist Pose Abdo, Abstraction, 2014, paint on beauty salon.

And here's the maker's mark.

It didn't make me want to go in and get a haircut (a pointless exercise in my case since I'm bald as a billiard ball) but it does make you pause just for a time.

Gotta duck out for a job interview in a bit so I must leave you now, but have a great weekend, would ya?


Thursday, January 21, 2016

iT'S STreeT arT THurSDay in eaST HoLLyWooD! Thursday, January 21, 2016

Dear Street Art Lovers and all the rest of you,

Artist unattributed, Red Bicyclist, paint on brick.
Just east of Vermont on Melrose, there is an artists cooperative workspace that I happened to learn about because while I was shooting various bits of wall art in the area, a guy opened a locked gate on a driveway and told me about it.

I could just see hints of something painted on the wall inside the gate, but it really wasn't visible. The guy allowed me to step in for just a few minutes and snap off  shots.

What we have here is some kind of superhero man in red with a cuckoo-clock chateau-like head, riding a bicycle.

I know I keep saying this, but it's some of the more weird-ass imagery I've see about town.

To the right of this fellow is some word art, related to the bicycling. It says "PeDALBike."

Detail of Red Bicyclist mural, word art.

Outside the driveway we have a bit of bicycle crank imagery along with a deer:

Artist unattributed, Cycle Part with Deer Head, paint on brick.

And then finally over the entrance to the public street, some mounted hands:

Artist unattributed, Hands over Entrance, painted panels, mounted.

Can we ascribe any meaning to all of this? Sure! We have one helluva lively corner in Hel-Mel. That's what it means to me. This is actually a pretty colorful area as I will show some other stuff I found in within a block. Much of it is behind chain-link fence. This part of East Holly can get kinda sketchy, so there are often locked boundaries put around things. But these things all peek out and intrigue us.


High clouds this morning. If you blur your eyes, you can almost imagine this one cloud formation to be a massively large angel with outstretched wings, hovering over the bay.

And here's a view more to the south, where the blue of the sky is not so washed out by the sun.

No more El Nino rain predicted until this weekend.

Enjoy your Thursday people. This short week is coming to a close soon.


Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Malibu morning picture of the day - Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Dear Family, Friends, and Gentle Readers,

It's Wednesday and it's been a foggy and drizzly morning. Clearing today, but still lots of clouds here at the coast.

When the light and cloud cover is just right, the whole place looks like it's made out of brushed steel.

January is quickly moving on, eh? It's the 20th already. Tax season is officially underway.

Is there any government kickback to you this year? No, even though it is an election year. The only folks who get a possible break are those eligible for the Premium Tax Credit. But even then it's money back from what you had to come out of pocket anyway to buy health insurance if you were not covered by an employer's plan or if you were not offered to go on your employer's plan. The cutoff ceiling is 4X the Federal Poverty Level, so there's a chance most folks could qualify (for a household of 3, that would be about $80,000) since wages have been pretty pitiful lately.

Sorry to bore you. One of these days I'm going to start the tax blog. This is just a warm-up.

Gotta pay the rent, so we'll see you tomorrow!


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

"Fairfax Gorillas" and Malibu morning picture of the day - Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Dear Family, Friends, and Gentle Readers,

I'm coming off a long weekend and so it's time to share something from the "Out of Bounds" Gallery of the Hell Mel Online Museum of Street Art of East Hollywood and Environs.

Artists "Lords" group, Rumble in the Jungle, detail, 2014, spray paint on concrete.

Unless you're a diehard observer of Civil Rights Movement historical remembrances (and bless you if you are), I suspect most everyone else puts MLK Day into the category of being another one of those "Alcoholidays" when you are free to alter your mood on your own time to the point where you can start to see pink elephants and gorillas.

There! How's that for a tie-in to today's mural? A reach you say? OK, I'll give you that. But this fellow above is either quite bored with my narrative, or he's about to attack.

Today's mural gives us three simian protraits to enjoy.

Here's a rather gruff-looking, snarly fellow rendered in blue on the right. I hope it wasn't something that I said.

The third portrait is a little fellow down toward the floorline of the mural--a timid guy wielding a spray paint can.

If you're looking at this mural, you almost don't see him/her.

This mural is located in the Fairfax-Melrose Avenue shopping corridor. This is near the Starbucks just east of Fairfax Avenue.

You will not see it from the street. It is only visible if you drive down the alley that runs parallel to Melrose just to the south.

Here's the whole image that spans the back of a store. You can see that there has been some wall repair obscuring parts of the mural. The date on this piece is 2014, so it's not that old.

There is an adjacent west wall in the rear parking lot where the pink portion continues:

Here we have some classic name art rendered in addition to the two names on the main wall. This piece has a multiplicity of name treatments which I like looking at. Here they are:

There is even more by this particular krewe in this back alley, but we'll have a look at their other stuff at later date.


Nothing but overcast grey on the way to coast, but once I got here, the solid cloud cover seemed to be breaking up overhead.

Many layers of cloud to the south.

That's all I got for you today. Sorry about the late post. Have a wonderful week!


Thursday, January 14, 2016

iT'S STreeT arT THurSDay in eaST HoLLYWood! Thursday, January 14, 2016

Dear Street Art Lovers and assorted spare parts:

Artist unattributed, Be the Change #1,
paint on signal box.
Is it that time already? My a week goes by so fast.  We were looking at some fine examples of the "Signal Box" genre last week.  Let's stay with that and look at a fine signal box piece at Western Avenue and Hollywood Blvd.

We have no artist attribution on this at all. But Jesus Christ, here we have a mash-up of the Prince of Peace himself, holding a necklace-size version of his Crown of Thorns against a background of a coin with a fragment of Mahatma Gandhi's advice: "Be the change that you wish to see in the world."

Not quite sure what the artist is getting at with his statement that the "change" here looks a lot like a penny, the least valuable of all coins.

Nevertheless, the "necklace" of thorns is also interesting. I imagine it goes on much easier, and it need not hurt if you're careful. That could a Jesus for our times, eh? Try not to get hurt if you avoid it? And  is that some fancy-ass decorative sleeve he's got on his dalmatica gown done by some super retro Israeli designer. And this Jesus wears not a cross around his neck (Man, what a downer!), but a cute, nice little, sentimental heart. Adorable! Yes I really want to change the world now.

Several weeks after I snapshotted this here Jesus, I was up on Franklin Avenue near the elementary school and I spotted this artist's companion piece. It makes me think there must be others in this series, and I need to go find them.

Artist unattributed, Be the Change #2, 
paint on signal box.

This one has an athletic young woman wearing a red cross imploring us to "TEACH PEACE". So now the "TCHR" on the coin is clearly an abbreviation for "TEACHER" and I think we can safely assume the slogan on the bottom of both subjects' coins is "TEACH LOVE."

The person on the penny has too much hair to be our friend Mohandas; and the hair is too straight and wavy to be the likely MLK.

So I have no idea who that might be. Nor do I have any ideas on who this young woman is either. If you do, leave a comment. The face is distinctive enough that I'm pretty sure she's not a "non-player character" type .

In any case, the sentiment expressed here is to be pure and righteously "white," even if the change you manage to effect is small. And a fine sentiment it is as we roll into this weekend leading up to Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday on Monday.

By the way, I'll be away on Friday and off work on Monday, so the Malibu picture blog will be taking a hiatus those days. Just a heads up. I have been told by my employer that they'll be relocating my office into the West San Fernando Valley for a few years while they do major renovations on campus, probably at the start of summer. So sadly, this is my first announcement that the end of the Malibu picture blog will be coming soon. But we'll talk about that more in the weeks to come.

Oh, there's another picture of the opposite side of the Jesus Box. It's a view of our famous Griffith Park Observatory. Probably done by schoolchildren. The maker's mark was not really legible.

A delightful image to grace our fair city nonetheless. Thank you dear unnamed artists! If you get up the Observatory, make sure you take in the show/movie that they run up there.

If you're my age, you probably remember a fairly dry lecture presentation when your science class took a field trip up there, with a guy using a laser pointer to indicate a star or planet. Now they have multimedia presentations that are slicker than snot, so do indulge yourself.


It's rather hazy this morning, with a lot of visible moisture, but not quite fog, in the air here on the coast. This shot gives you the best indication that that is so.

And here another look to the right of that.

And, dear people, that wraps up my week with you I'm afraid.

Have a glorious Friday, and a fabulous, long MLK Holiday Weekend. Throw a peace sign at someone would ya?


31-Day Paleo Diet Log

Wed, 1/13/2016
Weight: 231
Blood pressure: 118/70
Mood: from mild anxiety to good
Energy level: sufficient to the day
Temperature regulation: good
Congestion: nothing noticeable
Notes: No afternoon drowsy-wall situation continues--very pleased with that. Feel ready to resume bicycle commute to/from Culver City to Sta Monica in my routine.
Food: chicken, eggs, peppers, olives, nuts, ham, apple, berries, avocados