Glory Be

Today I’ll be participating my fourth (of five) Great LA Walks, all of them orchestrated by the awesome Michael Schneider of Franklin Avenue. Beginning at Pershing Square downtown I will be pedestrianating (yep, in the rain) with my fellow pedestrianaters all the way westward along Wilshire Boulevard some 15-miles to its end at Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica. In the meantime I leave you with this, found this morning at Tony Pierce’s Busblog,.

I am jealous of everyone present in this video who experienced such a joyful transformation of a mall’s garish food court to a glorious cathedral of soaring spirit.

Speaking of soaring spirits, there are so many things I wouldn’t know about without Tony. This being one of them. Hallelujah to him.

US Bank Tower Illusion

As expected the illusion doesn’t totally translate in the clip below, but after a late lunch at Blue Star on Saturday Susan and I went cruising around the Eastside (with a visit to Evergreen Cemetery) and came back westward on Whittier Boulevard to capture what was a noticeable vision trick regarding downtown’s US Bank Tower.

Basically to the naked eye it looks bigger further away, but as you draw closer the skyscraper appears to shrink. Like I said at the top, on shakycam video the effect isn’t nearly so dramatic, but there’s a hint of what I’m talking about:

Two Too Cute: Pepper Bathes Ranger

Pepper is well known around our house for his efforts to bath me and The Jig, another of our cats. Occasionally he’ll tackle Ranger, but most attempts to clean up the dog end after a few seconds, Today’s session, however, went way beyond short and routine when Pepper jumped onto the club chair Ranger was snoozing in and got busy grooming for faaaaar longer than usual. SO awesome:

Sometimes A Benefit Of Doubt Has Its Benefits

Whether they’re in a rush or just are straight-up inconsiderate I still am forced to deal with the occasional motorist who frustratingly parks blocking our driveway. But this weekend I fought off one for every day. There was a neighbor’s car poorly parked Thursday and all the way to Friday morning. Then there was a black sedan Saturday, followed by a Silver one Sunday.

In fact now that I think about it, when Susan and I left Saturday morning for our apple-pickin’ daytrip, we caught another parker in the act, whose vehicle’s back end extended a good three-feet across the apron.

“Can you get out?” he asked as I stood there staring at his car’s ass in a classical WTF pose.

“That would be no,” I answered curtly and he started the car and booked it. Debate occurred between Susan and I as to whether he would have gotten out and checked like a dutiful and considerate human, or whether he would have just rationalized why it was OK to be a dick. I fell squarely into that second camp.

There was a time a couple years ago where this BS was such a regular enough occurrence that I had LADOT parking enforcement on speed dial. I still do, but whereas I used to call them up requesting a citation expecting to be on a first-name basis with the dispatcher, of late I’ve taken a different tack. Maybe it’s the economy. Maybe I’m getting soft in my old age. But instead of meeting rude with cold I go to the trouble of printing out the following form note and slipping it under the offending vehicle’s wiper blade:

You have been partially blocking the driveway behind your vehicle. To you it may not seem like much, but this is a tight two-car, split-level garage, and any encroachment across the apron — such as how you’ve chosen to leave your vehicle — not only makes it difficult to get in and out, but unnecessarily puts your vehicle at risk of being hit accidentally during exits.

Personally, I’ve always been aware of how I park at curbs and wouldn’t dare park as you did, whether it was for a few minutes or a few hours.  As such, I’ve never bothered leaving notes such as this. Instead, I’ve just contacted parking enforcement to have vehicles such as yours ticketed and/or towed. They are more than happy to oblige.

But lately I’ve been working a different angle: I’m attempting to be considerate towards people who aren’t in the hope that the next time — whether it’s this driveway or another one — you’ll be a bit more attentive and less thoughtless.

Whether I’m wasting my time or not is up to you.

To be honest, of the three careless culprits I mentioned, I did call parking enforcement on the black sedan, whose prevention of us entering the garage properly unimpeded was what we were greeted with upon our return from our daytrip Saturday afternoon. Maybe the driver got out of there before the officer arrived. Maybe not.

But the silver sedan on Sunday morning, pictured at right, got my usual benefit-of-the-doubt treatment. The surprise came later when I found a reply lodged in the garage door handle (after the jump):

Continue reading Sometimes A Benefit Of Doubt Has Its Benefits

How Do You Define Arbitrary Perfection?

For me it’s rather trivially demonstrated by the fact that the walls of the foyer at our house are of a measurement so specifically and mindblowingly exact to the wheel-to-wheel length of my beloved 8Ball that she is held freestandlingly upright and perfectly in place when set between them, like so above (click for the bigger picture).

It doesn’t get more arbitrarily and/or coincidentally perfect than Foyer Bike Rack.