Come see a loft or two!

The Downtown Center Business Improvement District will host our final
Housing Bus tour of 2007 this Saturday, December 15! We will be visiting
the following properties:

1. Reserve Lofts - for lease - model units available

2. Mandel Lofts - for lease - model units available

3. Luma - for sale - model units available

4. 1100 Wilshire - for sale - model units available

5. 2121 Lofts - for sale - model units available

6. Roosevelt Lofts - for sale - sales gallery

Space is limited, so we invite you and your guests to register at:

For your convenience, we will resume our bi-monthly Saturday Housing Bus
Tour on January 12, 2008.

Should you have questions or need assistance with registering, you may
contact our office at 213.624.2146 and ask for Jose Flores (ext. 223).

Ain't No Santa Claus

When I was 10 or something, I remember setting up camp in my dad's lazyboy to wait for Santa Claus. Thankfully it was Christmas Eve. In any case, kids at school told me he didn't exist, and I had this sinking feeling that they were right, but I still had to see it for myself.

I had my blanket, stuffed animals, flashlight, and alarm clock. I positioned the chair so that I could see the front door, window, and Christmas tree. I was ready for Santa Claus to come and finish off the gift-giving. 11 p.m. , Midnight, 3 a.m., all came and went with no action.

When my alarm clock went off at 4 a.m., my mom came down the hallway to break the news – No Santa Claus, and if I didn't get into bed the remaining gifts wouldn't be placed under the tree.

So, I went to bed – for an hour. My brother and sister woke up at 5 a.m. ready for stockings, and to shake the presents that Santa left. I didn't say anything to them, they needed to figure it out for themselves.

There was a DVD floating around ArtWalk last night, and it is said to have on it remarks made by the President of DLANC at a December 6 CRA Board Meeting regarding the Skid Row Vision Plan.

I'm set to pick up my copy from the CRA on monday, not because I want to join in some kind of aggression, but rather I'm having a tough time facing the fact that something outrageous might have been said by someone I've been supporting with my good words through the neighborhood, and in my own circle of friends. If what was said was true, I can't in good faith be a supporter.

It's kind of like that night I was waiting for Santa Claus, and the disappointment I felt when I realized that my classmates were right.

Apologies don't fix broken trusts. Especially when the apologies I've heard just don't seem sincere.

When people make apologies for you, and the claim of defense is that you have a million things on your plate, maybe it is time to consider prioritizing?

Or maybe I should start prioritizing differently?

Outreach at Artwalk

Topics of conversation tonight:

The covert overtaking out our country by the King of England.

How certain racial groups have overtaken neighborhood councils.

Don't put my money in stocks, but rather stick it in a mattress.

It's not even a full moon, but it is a typical night on Main Street.

And,'s cold. I've wiped my nose on my scarf a million times.

I moved because I was tired of the rain

From my hometown:

Snoqualmie Falls


From the home of Evergreen State College

As MFM said: High Tide, Snowfall, and a lot of rain made for this trifecta that shouldn't come for another 30 years.

I've sat on the Ohare run way when this happened before...

Ever have a flight like this?

OMG - It's a DLANC mtg

It's like when Alex gives Ginny Instructions

Cute FedEx

Wonder how this works?

Until I guess?

I've been home for about an hour. Where was I? Our DLANC Board of Directors meeting. It's a raucous monthly event that is a true showcase of grassroots democracy - and Russ was right - something was in the water.

I haven't gone on a public rant in quite a while, and I guess it's time has come.

There are a couple of things that bug me about my fellow council members.

God-bless'em, they are good people and their heart is in the right place, but I get frustrated when motions come to the floor that haven't been flushed out, and there's one more word, phrase, or one little thing that needed to be put in there. It bugs me that it seems like motions come to our board meeting, and there's no real proof (granted, I haven't asked for it) that this motion has actually come from a committee, or if it's just a boardmember making a motion.

Board reports - they are verbal...we don't have written ones, and I'd like to see written ones.

Too few people doing all the work. It's starting to catch up with our board, and it seems like all of the boardmembers are doing something, but...

Imagine a see-saw. There's four people on one side, and 20 people on another. How would the see-saw balance? Well, for DLANC - th four people balance the remaining 20 people. And, I admit it - I'm one of the 20 people. Work, Church, UMW, a new building, a lovely relationship, my baseball collections, laundry, houseplants, and I guess I'm supposed to plan a wedding sometime...and I need time to blog - how am I supposed to fit volunteering, finding more people and telling my new neighbors that DLANC is the savior for downtown Los Angeles? OMG - I'm tired just typing it up.

And, to make matters worse (and the way I describe it, you'd think blood was spilling on Broadway) - our secretary is unable to be a notetaker for our meeting. I've got the last two meetings, including the Regional Connector presentation as MP3 files - but we don't have meeting notes.

And, we've got phat bank in our checking account, but no all encompassing plans (right now) to spend it. Why? Because we are too busy doing other things. And, and and and...I know I'm part of the problem.

>deep sigh<

To top it all off, Our DONE rep let us know that our election falls out of some sort of schedule, and our 2008 elections have been postponed until 2010. While I'm not calling for it, but I hope someone recalls me in 2008, just so that I have the opportunity to run on my good name.

2010...I don't know whether or not to be happy about this. I like elections, I want someone to run against me...I need someone to run against me or I'll feel like I really haven't done my job of activating the neighborhood. I want someone out there to say - "I can do a better job than she is, and this is what I would do" Those conversations are good for the neighborhood, and they should happen.

Okay okay...

I think I'm just punchy at this point.

There's one more item to cover, but I'm just going to wait until tomorrow night. (Before ER maybe?)

I think the machines are after me

First I had a flat tire.

Then, the printer gave me attitude.

Then, the scanner kept eating my paper.

Anti Aloha?

There's an article in this week's Honolulu Weekly (I have a weakness for the people of Hilo) about a hotel that I stayed at in Hilo.

I was on a multi-island business trip, visiting a prospective client in Honolulu, a client at Kapiolani Community College, a former client on Maui, and leading a training with Hawaii County.

The hotels booked for me is a story to itself.

Honolulu: My room was ant infested, the carpeted floor was damp, and no internet access in the room.

Maui: My hotel was very far away from anything. There was no cell coverage, no internet access, and I had to cross a sandy beach (in my work heels) to get to breakfast.

Hilo: It was the night before the hotel was to be turned over to the new owner. Their was a monster party which's theme was truely warranted "f-u" to the new owner. The cab driver on the way to the hotel explained most of the situation to me, so I was concerned that I would have trouble sleeping.

Which I did. At about 3 in the morning I heard splashing outside. Not waves crashing against the shore, but.... I get to the window and all I see are bright-white bare buttocks doing belly-flops into the pool. I'm glad they had a good time, even though it made the next day of training and travel back to the nasty hotel in Honolulu a bit of a bear.

It's a shame that Mr. Fujiyama has to do this to the community that helped to raise him. Even more so - it's a shame that most of us can only sit back and watch it play out.

Big day for Us!

Court agrees to rule on gun case

Posted By Lyle Denniston On November 20, 2007 @ 1:02 pm

FINAL UPDATE 3:20 p.m.

After a hiatus of 68 years, the Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to rule on the meaning of the Second Amendment — the hotly contested part of the Constitution that guarantees “a right to keep and bear arms.” Not since 1939 has the Court heard a case directly testing the Amendment’s scope — and there is a debate about whether it actually decided anything in that earlier ruling. In a sense, the Court may well be writing on a clean slate if, in the end, it decides the ultimate question: does the Second Amendment guarantee an individual right to have a gun for private use, or does it only guarantee a collective right to have guns in an organized military force such as a state National Guard unit?

The city of Washington’s appeal (District of Columbia v. Heller, 07-290) seeking to revive its flat ban on private possession of handguns is expected to be heard in March — slightly more than a year after the D.C. Circuit Court ruled that the Second Amendment right is a personal one, at least to have a gun for self-defense in one’s own home. (The Court took no action on Tuesday on a conditional cross-petition, Parker, et al., v. District of Columbia, 07-335, an appeal by five District residents seeking to join in the case. The absence of any action may mean that the Court has decided not to hear that case. If that is so, it will be indicated in an order next Monday. The Court also may simply be holding the case until it decides the Heller case.)

The Justices chose to write out for themselves the constitutional question they will undertake to answer in Heller. Both sides had urged the Court to hear the city’s case, but they had disagreed over how to frame the Second Amendment issue.

Here is the way the Court phrased the granted issue:

“Whether the following provisions — D.C. Code secs. 7-2502.02(a)(4), 22-4504(a), and 7-2507.02 — violate the Second Amendment rights of individuals who are not affiliated with any state-regulated militia, but who wish to keep handguns and other firearms for private use in their homes?”

The first listed section bars registration of pistols if not registered before Sept. 24, 1976; the second bars carrying an unlicensed pistol, and the third requires that any gun kept at home must be unloaded and disassembled or bound by a lock, such as one that prevents the trigger from operating.

The Court did not mention any other issues that it might address as questions of its jurisdiction to reach the ultimate question: did the one individual who was found to have a right to sue — Dick Anthony Heller, a D.C. resident — have a right to challenge all three of the sections of the local law cited in the Court’s order, and, is the District of Columbia, as a federal enclave, even covered by the Second Amendment. While neither of those issues is posed in the grant order, the Court may have to be satisfied that the answer to both is affirmative before it would move on to the substantive question about the scope of any right protected by the Amendment.

The D.C. Circuit ruled that the Amendment does apply to the District because of its federal status, subject to all provisions of the Constitution. At this point, therefore, it appears that the Court’s review may not reach a major question — does the Second Amendment also protect individual rights against state and local government gun control laws? But a ruling by the Court recognizing an individual right to have a gun almost surely would lead to new test cases on whether to extend the Amendment’s guarantee so that it applied to state and local laws, too. The Court last confronted that issue in Presser v. illinois, in 1886, finding that the Amendment was not binding on the states.

Some observers who read the Court’s order closely may suggest that the Court is already inclined toward an “individual rights” interpretation of the Second Amendment. That is because the order asks whether the three provisions of the D.C. gun control law violate “the Second Amendment rights of individuals.” But that phrasing may reveal very little about whether the Amendment embraces an individual right to have a gun for private use. Only individuals, of course, would be serving in the militia, and there is no doubt that the Second Amendment provides those individuals a right to have a gun for that type of service. The question the Court will be deciding is, if there are individuals who want to keep pistols for use at home, does the Second Amendment guarantee them that right. Just because the Second Amendment protects some individual right does not settle the nature of that right.

One of the interesting subsets of the question the Court will be confronting is whether the 1939 case of U.S. v. Miller is a precedent for what the Second Amendment means — individual or collective right. If that decision did find in favor of a collective right, the current Court would have to decide whether this was a binding precedent, or whether it should be overruled. Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., has already taken a stand on that question. At his nomination hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, he said that “the Miller case sidestepped” the issue of whether the Amendment protected a collective or an individual right. He added: “An argument was made back in 1939 that this provides only a collective right, and the Court didn’t address that….So people try to read into the tea leaves about Miller and what would come out on this issue, but that’s still very much an open issue.”

The local law at issue in Heller has been discussed widely as a sweeping ban on private possession or use of handguns. But the Court order granting review took it a step further: the one section that will be at issue that goes beyond handguns is the provision that requires that any gun kept at home be unloaded and disassembled, or at least be locked. Thus, that provision also applies to rifles and shotguns kept at home, in terms of whether those weapons would remain “functional” in time of emergency if that provision were upheld. That part of the order appeared to widen the inquiry in a way that the local residents who challenged the law had wanted.

Additional grants on Tuesday:

The Court also granted review on Tuesday of the question of whether federal labor law bars a state from forbidding a company that receives state funds from using any of those funds to speak out on issues in bargaining with a labor union. That case is U.S. Chamber of Commerce, et al., v. Brown, et al. (06-939). The U.S. Solicitor General, asked by the government for its views on the case, urged that review be granted. At least 16 states have laws or are considering laws like the one in California at issue in the case.

The Court also said on Tuesday that it will hear an appeal by Alabama’s governor, Bob Riley, in a voting rights case — but will not necessarily decide the merits of the appeal. The Court postponed the question of its jurisdiction until its hearing on the case of Riley v. Kennedy, et al. (07-77). That means the Justices will, indeed, hear oral argument, but will focus part of that argument on whether the case is properly before them. The other side in the case contended in its response that the state officials waited too long to file their appeal, thus depriving the Court of jurisdiction.

The merits issue raised by the governor is whether rulings by state Supreme Courts on the meaning of state or local election law do bring about the kind of changes in voting rights that must first get federal clearance before going into effect — for those states and local jurisdictions that are covered by the pre-clearance requirement of the Voting Rights Act’s Section 5.

These other two cases, like Heller, are likely to be scheduled for argument in the March sitting that begins on Mar. 17.

Green for the day? Try a term...

I got an email yesterday from someone asking me when I was going to pick a GP candidate to support.


There's a presidential campaign going on? I didn't notice.

I'll think about it. I've alway enjoyed Kent's platform, Cynthia's a strong candidate, and there's also Kat...

Well...if you are finding your way to my website through the California Green Party, you can look to the right column and I've got link's to all of the candidates that will appear on the primary ballot.

Outside of Kent, Cynthia, and Kat - I'm not interested in hearing about any of the other candidates.

I don't moderate my posts (I don't get that many), so if you'd like to woo me with why I should support one candidate over another - I'm all eyes.

Coffee, Recycling, Oh My!

You know that guy who leaves almost a cup in the carafe.

Or, you may be the person who tosses the recycling in the trash (or the trash in the recycling)

It's about time the Office Linebacker made an appearance!

This is for the Department that had the most attendees to yesterday's meeting - I appreciate it!

After 13 years

My coffeecup warmer finally gave out this morning. I bought it from a thrift store in 1994, used it through undergrad, grad school, and at work. It never made it to summer camp though....

That's a bummer.

Time Lapse

It dawned on I was catching up on LA Live construction, I think I've only been to the gym three times during the entire movie listed under the "Time Lapse" link.

USC and the liquor license debate

Watering holes, developments lead to student rush downtown

Residents say a 1,400 percent increase of liquor licenses downtown might hurt the area.

By: Nicole Dailo and Jean Guerrero

Posted: 11/1/07

USC students fed up with the early curfew on The Row and never-ending line at the 901 Bar & Grill are turning to an influx of bars downtown. But some are concerned by an increase in approved liquor licenses and a development boom in the area feel more like a hangover than added fun.

More than 40 bars and restaurants hold liquor licenses in the Historic Core - a 1,400 percent increase according to state regulations, the Los Angeles Downtown News recently reported.

The area has evolved rapidly since 1998, when the city adopted an adaptive-reuse ordinance allowing vacant office buildings to be rezoned into residential lots.

Amenities such as restaurants, dry cleaners and hair salons followed as the area became more residential. Kevin Keller, a city planner with the L.A. City Planning Department and president of the L.A. chapter of the American Planning Association, said this transition supplemented the demand for clubs and bars in the area.

The influx of downtown haunts, however, is unwelcome to some residents. The area's development is controversial because of a burgeoning over-concentration of alcohol retailers in close proximity to Skid Row.

"We've got folks who are going through things in life that are very difficult, and having access to alcohol could add trials and tribulations," said Ginny-Marie Case, a member of the Downtown Neighborhood Council.

Despite such concerns, planning and construction of developments with liquor licenses has continued.

Earlier this month, the city overturned a previous decision by the zoning administration by approving conditional-use permits for the Santa Fe Lofts, a residential complex that included plans for a street-level bar, said Kate Bartolo, who worked for seven years with the Los Angeles-based real estate company backing the project.

She said the zoning administration was concerned for the homeless on Skid Row because of the "overwhelming temptation" that might arise from new liquor establishments.

Bartolo said the developments will actually benefit homeless people, who are oftentimes the victims of attacks, because many instances of violence could be avoided by enlivening the area's storefronts.

Case expressed mixed feelings about focusing on the perceived problem of too many liquor licenses and bars.

"For all the folks who want to complain about too many liquor licenses, there are bigger issues here," Case said. "There isn't enough affordable housing. This neighborhood has been ignored for many years."


Some students said the prospect of a night out downtown raises safety concerns. Despite rapid growth, many feel the area remains unsafe to frequent late at night.

In spring 2004, a USC junior was shot and killed after being dropped off at a gas station two miles away from his downtown apartment. The student, Maxwell Hazlett, had asked his friends to let him walk so he could look for an open liquor store on the way home, the Daily Trojan reported in 2004.

Charles Hockenbury, a junior majoring in political science, said the consequences of reviving downtown must be calculated before problems arise, because partygoers will give these issues little thought.

"If a place pops up downtown, [students] assume that work has gone into making sure it's a safe and viable option," he said.

Adrian Santos, a junior majoring in public relations, said he thinks downtown is a lot safer than the area around campus.

Since 2006, there has been a 28 percent decrease in violent crimes around the Historic Core, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. Throughout the city, there has been an 8 percent decrease within the last year.

Some students said they believe the use of common sense usually suffices in avoiding danger.

"If I'm with a group of people, then I feel safe," said Janet Kim, a second-year graduate student in occupational therapy.

Clara Irazabal, assistant professor of urban planning and design, said increasing activity downtown at night might actually make the area more safe.

"The most effective way to make a district safe is to plan for people to be there at all times. This is safer than security cameras - people make places safe," Irazabal said.

Keller said more careful review of individual cases should suffice in keeping the area safe.

"Patrols, security, training and those kinds of regulations will be placed on each business," he said.

Future hot spot

Some downtown residents and workers said they are optimistic about the young, hip feel development is bringing to the historically business-oriented area.

"People in the area are responding really well to the new development. You can sense that downtown finally has a true feel to it," said an employee at Lost Souls Café in the Historic Core.

With the grand opening of the 7,100-seat Nokia Theater earlier this month and its accompanying Central Plaza, downtown seems to be morphing into a youth-friendly hot spot.

By October 2008, the L.A. Live project plans to unveil a conglomeration of new enterprises, including a broadcasting facility and restaurant along with the ESPN's West Coast headquarters, up to 14 new restaurants, two night clubs and the Grammy Museum, Keller said.

With these new developments that cater to young adults, some say downtown will become an even bigger party spot.

Corey Hall, a senior majoring in business administration, said students are going to start heading downtown for the social scene.

"I think the revitalization of downtown is just going to continue the trend that's already started," he said.

But Tom Aldrich, a senior majoring in business administration, said he thinks students will not go downtown yet because "it's so dirty" and because of the popularity of the 9-0 near campus.

"It's going to take a while, and it depends on whether or not [venues] are strict on [checking proof of age]," he said.

Hockenbury said that while staying close to campus is more convenient for students, the perceived Department of Public Safety crackdown on Thursday-night parties on The Row and the administration's attempt to steer USC away from its party-school reputation is driving students out of North University Park and toward downtown's bright lights.

"Naturally, the first place [students] go is The Row," he said. "But [the crackdown has] been forcing people to supplement their social activity, … and downtown is a short cab ride away."

My Yankee Dilemma.

Can it be? A Yankee coming to town to coach the Dodgers? Oh, if I didn’t need therapy before, I know I need it now.

Let’s recap:

While in high school I began to idolize the Mariners - if for any other reason than they all lived in Seattle, and I wanted to live in Seattle. When I started college, I missed my Math 105 final >twice< because in 1994 and 1995 there were some very important games that could not be missed.

However, I started to notice a trend - my Mariners were moving to New York. There was the beloved and lustful Tino Martinez. A-Rod eventually made it east, Jeff Nelson, Luis Sojo...I’ll stop there. Honestly, when Tino left town, the coffeeshop was a bit down in the dumps about it. He was cute.

Then, I started to read about the Yankee Owner. Then, I just started not liking the stupid Yankee logo.

Joe Torre had better make his way to downtown and start buying up all our Dodger gear. He’s going to get the stadium on opening day and see tens of thousands of diehard Dodger fans - he had better be good and worth all that money.

Andre and Russell deserve nothing less.

The one big upside is that I have a hunch I'll be getting a TON of new bobbleheads for my collection. Good thing I got a better job that allows for more shelf space.

Kids - don't try this at home

Golf Cart Joyride Destroys Greens


Three golf carts were hot wired and taken for a joyride over the weekend at Gold Mountain Golf Course.

Bremerton police arrived Sunday morning to the golf course along the 7200 block of West Belfair Valley Road Sunday morning to find three golf carts trashed at various points across the course.

Two of the carts were driven as far as they could be driven into the woods near green 12. Police believe the suspects used access near the railroad tracks to leave the course, according to reports.

The golf carts had been damaged and their windshields were removed. A third golf cart was found near green 18. The cart had been driven over a rhododendron bush and into a tree, according to reports.

The front wheels were facing different directions, indicating the steering mechanism had been damaged.

In addition to the cart damage, greens 1, 12 and 18 were partially destroyed by the joy rides. The grass had deep grooves from tires and large burned out marks from the stolen carts being driven on them.

A golf course employee estimated the damage at around $6,000. Police have no suspect information, but have forwarded the report to detectives for review.

I was just thinking about when I was a kid...

I used to get into bike accidents all the time. And, then I thought to myself - I wonder if YouTube's got any good kid-bike-accidents.

At least this one has a helmet on!

I did this! And, I think it took me that long to get up too!

Ahhh, and this one bounced...with instant replay.

Again, Kudos to the parents for the kid having a helmet on...
It's the only reason I can laugh...

Reasons why you MUST fund afterschool programs

And, for the involves crutches.

Did you miss the Westside Extension Presentation? Watch it...


CA has wind, but WA has wind AND Ferries

The email from

Fri October 19, 2007 10:36 PM
On Thursday October 18th Western Washington was hit with a 50+ MPH wind storm. Here are my pictures of the event.

After work I made my way down to the Mukilteo Lighthouse Park where I witness the Mukilteo to Clinton ferry taking a pounding.

These Issaquah 130 Class ferries are over 300 feet long and 78 feet wide and weight in at 2477 tons (4,954,000 lbs) unloaded......

I'll start with some Rock & Roll..

Ok, here's one for you Long Flume lovers...

During storms like this the crew plots a course which puts the ferry in the least vulnerable position, but at some point they have to change course, and when they did Puget Sound made up for lost time.

After t his run the ferry system stopped running at full capacity and ran 1/2 empty for the rest of the night.

Note that there are no longer cars visible in the last shot. I'm sure they were washed into the cars behind them

Each shot was taken 0.3 seconds apart hand held at 320mm's.

I'm glad you guys liked them; I was amazed at what I saw through the lens. During the wind storm I like to go down to the Lighthouse Park in Mukilteo and watch the ferries, but I've never seen a ferr y take a hit like that. After this run they added a 3rd ferry and ran them 1/2 empty.

I'm going to have Costco print up a few 20x30".

Someone either PM'd me or posted that I should send these to the WS Ferry System. I tried to sell them a much tamer, but similar shot and they told me these kind of shots don't promote rider ship. I couldn't argue that one.

For my family and friends

I got a call this morning from my sister "concerned" about the fires down here in Southern California. Just to let everyone know that I live in the middle of the city, surrounded by concrete and asphalt, and an occasional tree...very far away from the fires.

So, Alex and I are just fine.

Except that we are still sad that the Mariners and Dodgers aren't in the World Series.

The San Francisco Treat-Maker Passes

Inventor of Rice-A-Roni dies near San Francisco
Mon Oct 22, 2007 8:01pm EDT

By Adam Tanner

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - The son of Italian immigrants who turned an Armenian recipe into Rice-A-Roni, the popular dish known to Americans since the 1960s as "The San Francisco Treat," has died, his family said on Monday.

Vincent DeDomenico died on Thursday of natural causes at his home in Napa, California, north of San Francisco, his daughter Marla Bleecher said.

DeDomenico worked in his family's pasta business when he was inspired in 1958 to create the mix of vermicelli, macaroni and flavorings that millions of Americans came to know by its advertising slogan as "The San Francisco Treat."

"My uncle Tom's wife got the recipe from an Armenian neighbor and served it one night for dinner," Bleecher said. "My dad had been making dried soups for the Army ... When he tasted it he said maybe we can make something like this in dry form."

"He went back to the plant and they started messing around with it, starting with the soup base they made for the Army," she said.

Rice-A-Roni was soon found on American tables coast to coast following the television advertising campaign in the 1960s that featured scenes of San Francisco and its cable cars, along with a catchy jingle to promote the easy-to-make dish. The ads also gave the city much publicity.

"It's a brand that's been great for the city and is a vestige of my childhood," San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom told the San Francisco Chronicle last year. "Just the sight and sound of the cable car bell evokes the old jingle."

The DeDomenico family in 1986 sold their firm, the Golden Grain Macaroni Company, to Quaker Oats as part of deal worth about $300 million, Bleecher said. It is now owned by PepsiCo.

Even after creating the U.S. packaged food classic, DeDomenico continued to tinker with new culinary ideas, using his family as tasters. "He brought all these test products home," his daughter said. "We ate these products until we were all sick of them."

I don't like it when...

I don't like it when I order my "double tall latte (with an extra shot), and could you leave some extra room?" and when I go to pick it up, I see the barista pour a little of the total drink out to "Make Some Room"

Just don't fill it so full - don't pour out some of that luscious coffee!!!

My first Big Art Friend

You need to meet my friend Ginger. Ginger is my oldest friend, we became friends out of necessity - we were locker partners in High School. Ginger was the Cross Country and Track star, and I was the lonely computer lab geek who intermittently ventured onto the softball field.

When we went off to college we kind of stayed in touch, and we've stayed friends through our trials and tribulations of life.

Ginger is an artist. She's incredibly smart and very creative. Although she lives in Chicago and I'm here in Los Angeles, we've been able to see each other in each other's adopted hometowns.

Tonight she told me that while she's in Europe voluteering for an amazing festival, that a gallery has scheduled to show her work. So - you should see her work before she becomes internationally famous!

Yah Ginger!

You can "Go Metro" on your iPhone now!

Here's the link to their website

October 8, 2007
Rick Jager/Marc Littman

Metro Media Relations


Metro Debuts New Web Site Tailored Especially for Hand-Held Devices

Metro has launched an offspring of its popular web site at that is designed, especially, for those commuters and Metro riders who carry hand-held electronic devices that can access the Internet.

For those travelers, will now provide Metro’s Trip Planner, fare information, maps of the Metro System and a wealth of rider information tailored to their small screens and slower internet access.

For Metro riders, the new site is designed to function on a variety of web-enabled devices and will operate on approximately 90 percent of current hand-held devices, all but the most basic machines.

One of the target audiences to the new web feature are new arrivals to Los Angeles or tourists, people who may not have access to a computer wherever they are staying. By accessing they can now find Metro information with their cell phone. The new site also has been optimized to download quickly and use little bandwidth.

To best access Metro’s Trip Planner on the new web site, Metro recommends the Opera Mini Browser, which does an excellent job of handling web sites that are designed for mobile access. The browser is free and allows individuals to access mobile web sites on cell phones that do not come with browsers. The browser can be downloaded from

Marching Band Mania

I was looking through my website statistics tonight (and yes, I have more pressing things to take care of...) and noticed that an entry on a marching band competition gets more hits than anything else on my blog. It even beats out the entry on the one about the time a rat crawled up into my car's engine and died.

So - for those who make their way here hoping for some great information on the rivalries of high school marching bands, let me redirect you to these websites:

Can I just say: Hello - OMG - there's some serious marching fanatics out there. Everything a marching band needs is right here.

2) School Bands
For those of us who think back to the days when we were in marching bands (I played the drums), visit this website and look at today's marching bands.

Okay kids - have at it. Go get your fundraising on, practice marching down the hallway, and memorize those notes. There's work to be done...the people await your performance.

See, I think even Mr. Yantis would be proud...

Ginny's Bulleted List of Comments

  • I talked to someone in line at the grocery store this week. Rather, she came up to me and asked me about the Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council. How about you?
  • I have officially saved up enough money to replace all four tires on my car. This means starting next week I >might<>
  • However, on Monday I will officially give up my once-a-day Starbucks habit so that I can save up for a new Mac.
  • Next week I promised to eat three meals a day, and not all three meals at the same time. That didn't work out so well for me this week.
  • Sunday I promise to call my Grandma Marian because I realized that three (omg 3) months have passed since I last spoke to them. I hope they know I've been busy, not busy ignoring them, just busy with my simple little life.
  • Now, I'm feeling really guilty about not calling them.
  • Maybe I should just hope a plane and hope they will make me dinner.
  • sigh. My grandma makes great fried eggs.
  • And pie.

Who doesn't like a WW Reference!

By Roland S. Martin

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (CNN) -- There was a scene from the "West Wing" that speaks to what happens when a leader says enough is enough and is moved to action.

President Bush should step up to deal with Hurricane Katrina's aftermath, says Roland S. Martin.

The fictitious president, Josiah Bartlett, watches from a distance as the Teamsters union and UPS try to reach a bargaining agreement, but nothing is happening. As he attends a state dinner, he calls them all to the White House. When he walks in, the bickering begins. After a few seconds, he essentially says, "Shut up. You guys have messed around, and I'm not going to have this nation paralyzed by your inaction. You're going to sit in this room until you figure it out. Now get to work. And when I return, I want to see an agreement."

But the basic premise remains the same: When the president of the United States wants to step in and make something happen, he will. He is the most powerful person on the planet, so what's the problem with the Katrina recovery effort?

Bush said he was going to appoint a czar over the Gulf Coast, and he often refers to Don Powell as being that guy, but he doesn't have the power. In fact, Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Mississippi, says he is having to use persuasive powers -- as opposed to having the statuary power -- to make it a reality. You can't cut through red tape if you don't have a pair of scissors to do it.

So how do we make it happen?

President Bush needs to stop the back and forth taking place and order New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco, certain members of Congress, Powell, and other leaders to come to Camp David, sit down, come up with a workable plan, and get it going.

He should say, "I don't care how long you guys sit in this room. I don't care how long it takes. But you are going to devise a clear and concise plan, and once you¹re done, we are going to go to the Rose Garden, hold a news conference for the rest of the world to hear it and then get to work."

If there are onerous that rules that are getting in the way of progress, give Powell the power to change them. If contractors are dragging their feet and doing shoddy work, fire them. Stick everyone responsible for recovery in one building and say this is the nerve center and all operations are being handled here.

It's pathetic being down here and listen to the finger-pointing, backstabbing, accusations of ineptness on the part of the city, state and federal government.

All I keep hearing is "We need a plan, we need a plan." Ask the mayor's office and they will say, "We've got a plan." Call the governor's office and they will tell you there is a plan. But when you ask to see it, no one seems to be able to come up with it.

As a result, we get spending that is out of control; waste taking place at all levels; money sent to the state that hasn't been spent; and the people who need the help, those who lost everything, ­sit in limbo.

Mr. President, you've been accused of being John Wayne. Well, act the part. Pull a John Wayne and save the day.

The only thing that is going to move this ball along is forceful leadership. And the only person who can do it is President Bush. No more paralysis by analysis. The money to build will come from the federal government. The head of the federal government is the president.

If the president truly cared, and wanted to end the bickering and inaction, he could make this happen. People are desperately waiting for someone ­anyone ­to step up. President Bush, you¹re the commander in chief.

Command the players to get to work. Today.

Roland S. Martin is a nationally award-winning, multifaceted journalist and CNN contributor. Martin is studying to receive his master's degree in Christian Communications at Louisiana Baptist University, and is the author of "Listening to the Spirit Within: 50 Perspectives on Faith." You can read more of his columns at

Crossing the street for Santee Alley

What's with all the downtown hating?

I open up the LA times yesterday and I begin to read about how Lauren - from the MTV show The Hills is all about shopping at Santee Alley. Which for the first two or three paragraphs, I was okay with. Until she started in with this whole speech about how she could spend $100 and get a lot of great stuff, then out of the blue started talking about all the knock-off and cheaply made goods.

Then, I open up the paper today and Steve Lopez is going on about jaywalking tickets in Skid Row - like the tickets are not distributed anywhere else in downtown.

First off - all the stuff I've bought in the fashion district has been high quality - not cheaply made stuff. Yes, it exists - but you have to look for cheaply made stuff. Yesterday I bought a beautiful pair of jeans, and a fabulous sweater for less than $100. Then, I walked over and bought two new pairs of shoes...and ask Alex...they weren't cheap...but a girl HAS GOT TO HAVE HER SHOES...that match my purse.

If you want to buy cheap, that's fine. Buy from the folks who sell their stuff on the street and avoid any store that has four walls. Keep in mind it's likely the sales tax they are charging you isn't making it back into the State's coffers.

But, on to the topic that really has me going this afternoon. Jaywalking.
Oh...people...don't cross when the red hand is flashing. If you are already in the intersection, that's one thing - finish. But, if you see the flashing hand and you are ready to dart into the street...don't do it.

A couple of days ago I was walking up to get some coffee. I was standing at 6th and Broadway and I saw a couple enter the crosswalk when the red hand was already flashing. Normally, I'd just mutter to myself and see the aggravated driver who'd been waiting to make a right turn under that green light. However, rather than muttering, all I could think to say was: "Ohhhhh, buuuussssttttteddddd" because there were two officers waiting for the pedestrian on the other side of the intersection. Indeed - jaywalking was finally a ticketable offense in Los Angeles. Pedestrians, Bikers, and Cars do not individually OWN the road - we SHARE the road.

Just for full disclosure - when I lived in Washington I was an avid rollerblader. Unfortunately the part of town I lived in wasn't too friendly to my rollerblading, and I would constantly get tickets for rollerblading on the sidewalk, on the street, on park benches...yet I continued to do it. So, don't think for a minute I'm trying to play "Holier than Thou" - I'm just saying - don't cross on the red flashing hand. Just wait for the next light.

and, now for you You Tubbies out there...some useless violence...

and, in closing: when it looks like there are no cars - trust me...they are there:

Things that just don't happen at PE Lofts

There's a party going on across the street from us. Look:

A closer look:

Let's see how long this goes on...

But, he just won a car

I was wrong - he's not coming to Seattle. That makes me sad. Baseball

Wednesday, July 18, 2007
M's to be paying Ichiro until at least 2032
Associated Press

NEW YORK -- The Seattle Mariners will be paying Ichiro Suzuki for at least a quarter century.

The All-Star outfielder's new contract extension calls for the team to defer $25 million of the $90 million he is owed, money that the team will not have to fully pay until at least 2032.

Suzuki, MVP of last week's All-Star Game, gets a $5 million signing bonus and annual salaries of $17 million from 2008-12 under the terms of last Friday's deal.

Seattle will pay $12 million in salary each year and defer $5 million per season at 5.5 percent interest. Suzuki, who turns 33 in October, will receive the money in annual installments each Jan. 30 starting with the year after his retirement from the major leagues.

Because of the deferred money, the average annual value of the contract is discounted to $16.1 million under the provisions of baseball's collective bargaining agreement.

In addition, he gets a housing allowance of $32,000 next year, an increase of $1,000 from this season, and the amount will rise by $1,000 each year. He also will be provided with either a new jeep or Mercedes SUV by the team, which also gives him four first-class round trip tickets from Japan each year for his family. Provisions for the Mariners to give him a personal trainer and an interpreter were continued.

Suzuki, who would have been eligible to become a free agent after this season, began Wednesday with a .352 batting average and a major league-leading 133 hits.

Oh...I've crossed a line

I told my dad that I didn't have time to talk to him tonight because I want to watch Paris Hilton on Larry King live.

Carts! Carts! Every Downtowner needs one

I'm not talking about the grocery cart, I'm talking about the card you need to get your laundry to and from your apartment, your groceries home from the store, while you are picking pop cans out of the trash.

I have a cart. It was given to Alex and I when we moved into Santee Court. After three years of rugged abuse (I used it to move a microwave from Santee Court to the PE Building, waaaaaaaaaay overweight, and I didn't think it would make it), it's about to retire. Knowing how I am with my stuff, it's likely to be around for another 9 or 10 years.

When my cart and I are out and about, at least one person asks me - where did I get my cart. I feel bad because it was just given to me, and I can't share my joy in carting with anyone, outside of telling them, "back off, this is mine, and don't think I just leave this sitting around in the laundry room!" Errr, I mean - you can get one at Ralphs.

But, nooooooow I am in a position where I need to do some cart shopping, preparing for the inevitable cart breakage. So, because I have a wild and crazy audience (maybe one or two people a day, if I'm not quitting my job or running for office), I wanted to share my results with you!

Just your plain old cart from Target:

$29.99, online
Nothing too fancy here.

Looking a little more sturdy, and the possibility of accessories:

$39.99, without liner, online
$44.98, with the removable liner (for those who don't want to show their unmentionables...I promise, no judging)

Then, OMG - we hit GOLD people!
Without a doubt shopping carts make transporting groceries from a car or bus to your home a whole lot easier. They're also great for hauling loads of laundry to the laundry room or launderette. Unfortunately most have trouble getting up stairs or curbs, but not ours. It climbs so easily we've come to think of it as the mountain goat of shopping carts. Weighs a mere 11.7 lbs. and folds up to 9" deep to store in your trunk, hang on the wall, or tuck in your closet. Some assembly required.
This is what I want. Alex...can we break into our Las Vegas fund and buy this?

The Real Life View:

$39.95, and you can buy this online too.

So, don't steal the pretty carts from the Fairfax Farmers Market. For God's sake, don't think of stealing the carts from our (hopefully opening soon) Ralphs.