Thursday, October 30, 2008
From Derelict Urban Structures:
History: In 1933, an heiress named Winona Stephens purchased fifty acres from Will Rogers on property that is now Rustic Canyon (now part of Santa Monica Parks and Recreation). According to records in the Los Angeles Historical Society Archives, Stephens became engaged to an official of the Nazi Party named Herr Schmidt. He convinced her to invest four millions dollars of her fortune in a self-sufficient community which could survive a potential attack during WWII. As records indicate, the renowned Frank Lloyed Wright was commissioned to draw architectural sketches of the main buildings.
In the drawings are terraced orchards, a powerful electric fence, a diesel-powered generator, a 395,000 gallon water tank, an Olympic sized swimming pool, and extensive networks of staircases scattered along the walls canyon. The stairs were believed to be used by guards for patroling the property.
A year or so after construction was completed, rumors spread over late night military drills and loud gun-fire. Police records show that Herr Schmidt was arrested one day after Pearl Harbor was bombed. A short wave radio device was confiscated at the site. Pacific Palisades Historian Betty Young notes, "Herr Schmidt died immediately after, in prison."
It was a stellar afternoon despite the Sunset Boulevard crawl back to the Beach House caused by the Chautauqua grass fires. For a few more snaps from our afternoon click here.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Independent panel finds FDA conclusions on BPA flawed
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's finding earlier this year that the chemical bisphenol A is safe for use in food containers and other products is "not supported by the available data and science," according to an independent review panel tasked with examining the FDA's conclusions. The review panel found that "The margins of safety defined by FDA as 'adequate' are, in fact, inadequate," and that the FDA's whole approach to assessing BPA "creates a false sense of security" and "overlooks a range of potentially serious findings." Also, the studies dismissed by the agency in its assessment "raise additional and unsettling concern."sources: Associated Press, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Playa Surfers were in full-effect with their full sized replica lifeguard tower as see below....
For 15 more shots from Decom click here.
Dear Red States...
We've decided we're leaving. We intend to form our own country, and we're taking the other Blue States with us.
In case you aren't aware, that includes Hawaii, Oregon,Washington, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois and all the Northeast. We believe this split will be beneficial to the nation, and especially to the people of the new country of New California.
To sum up briefly: You get Texas, Oklahoma and all the slave states. We get stem cell research and the best beaches. We get Elliot Spitzer. You get Ken Lay.
We get the Statue of Liberty. You get Dollywood.
We get Intel and Microsoft. You get WorldCom.
We get Harvard. You get Ole' Miss.
We get 85 percent of America's venture capital and entrepreneurs. You get Alabama.
We get two-thirds of the tax revenue, you get to make the red states pay their fair share.
Since our aggregate divorce rate is 22 percent lower than the Christian Coalition's, we get a bunch of happy families. You get a bunch of single moms.
Please be aware that Nuevo California will be pro-choice and anti-war, and we're going to want all our citizens back from Iraq at once. If you need people to fight, ask your evangelicals. They have kids they're apparently willing to send to their deaths for no purpose, and they don't care if you don't show pictures of their children's caskets coming home. We do wish you success in Iraq, and hope that the WMDs turn up, but we're not willing to spend our resources in Bush's Quagmire.
With the Blue States in hand, we will have firm control of 80 percent of the country's fresh water, more than 90 percent of the pineapple and lettuce, 92 percent of the nation's fresh fruit, 95 percent of America's quality wines (you can serve French wines at state dinners) 90 percent of all cheese, 90 percent of the high tech industry, most of the U.S. low-sulfur coal, all living redwoods, sequoias and condors, all the Ivy and Seven Sister schools, plus Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Cal Tech and MIT.
With the Red States, on the other hand, you will have to cope with 88 percent of all obese Americans (and their projected health care costs), 92 percent of all U.S. mosquitoes, nearly 100 percent of the tornadoes, 90 percent of the hurricanes, 99 percent of all Southern Baptists, virtually 100 percent of all televangelists, Rush Limbaugh, Bob Jones University, Clemson and the University of Georgia.
We get Hollywood and Yosemite, thank you.
Additionally, 38 percent of those in the Red states believe Jonah was actually swallowed by a whale, 62 percent believe life is sacred unless we're discussing the death penalty or gun laws, 44 percent say that evolution is only a theory, 53 percent that Saddam was involved in 9/11 and 61 percent of you crazy b*****ds believe you are people with higher morals then we lefties.
By the way, we're taking the good pot, too. You can have that dirt weed they grow in Mexico.
A few weeks back the Women's Sci-Fi Book Club of Greater Los Angeles threw an out-of-this-world fundraiser at MOCA in support of The Wonder Of Reading. Brava, Ladies, for all of your hard work supporting such a stellar cause!
For a few more of my snaps click here.
For a more comprehensive look at the event (photos by Melissa Manning) click here.
Monday, October 27, 2008
Thursday, October 23, 2008
HINT: When the top video hits 3 seconds play the lower video. If it's not in sync use the pause buttons...watch the dance moves to see which video is ahead and requires pausing.
If you liked the Jim Hensen directed, David Bowie/Jennifer Connelly classic 80s movie, Labyrinth, then you're in the same boat as local band, The Happy Hollows, who just released their new music video, appropriately named after the flick. "There is a scene where Connelly comes to two doors guarded by two guards," the band explains in an e-mail to LAist. "The guards tell her a riddle (one guard always lies, ones guard tells the truth, and she can ask them one question). That riddle essentially makes up the lyrics of the song."
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Saturday, October 18, 2008
For 30 more photos from our fabulous weekend click here.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
(image courtesy of Thomas Hawk)
I drove past the Church of Scientology office in Santa Monica yesterday and saw a hand written sign in the window exclaiming "Free Personality Testing, Come In Now, No Obligation". This made me wonder if personality tests are standard practice for other religions as well. It also just dawned on me that Scientologists don't believe in psychiatry yet personality tests are a pretty standard part of some psych evaluations.
File this under: Things that make you go 'Hmmmm'!
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
For 334 more photos of my 2008 Playa adventure click here.
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Monday, October 6, 2008
Saturday, October 4, 2008
Friday, October 3, 2008
Automaker Daimler unveiled an all-electric version of its tiny Smart car at the Paris Auto Show this week, dubbed the Smart ED for its electric drive. Diesel-powered versions of the ultra-cute, ultra-compact Smart Fortwo went on sale in the United States this past January to wide acclaim. The company's goal is to have some 1,000 of the all-electric Smart Fortwo's in operation in various cities around the world by the end of 2009, with some available in the U.S. by 2012 at the latest. Daimler has been testing 100 or so of the Smart EDs in London since last year and has said it will also test 100 more in Berlin soon. The tiny Smart ED will be able to travel some 90 miles on a full charge and has a top speed of about 74 miles per hour.