Monday, March 06, 2006

Well, since I'm not I member of AMPAS I could give a rat's ass

Mar 4th, 2 pm: Well, the Los Angeles-Italia festival at Hollywood & Highland turned out to be a bust -- and the Havana Hut which only recently opened (great Cuban food!) was shuttered along with all the other eateries around the Kodak Theatre due to Hollywood's Big! Night! so I decided to head over to the Grove to eat at Pampas, my favorite Brazilian buffet (as opposed to Bossa Nova, my favorite sit-down Brazilian restaurant).

There's a character on the bus loudly giving out misinformation to tourists --more than half of what he's saying is so off base that it's more amusing than annoying.

Yesterday's rain and today's sun makes for a pleasant day to be outside at the Grove. There are times when it is kind of nice to look at one's town through the eyes of tourists and gain --or regain-- a sense of appreciation for what we take for granted. Because of Hollywood's! Big! Night! we have throngs of visitors from all over the world everywhere you go. It's particle's midsummer.

Tomorrow I'll go to South Pasadena for the Sisters in Crime/Los Angeles meeting after my morning meeting in WeHo. Mystery author Gary Phillips will be their guest speaker.

Traffic will be a little nuts around here then. The street closures and construction for all the big post-Oscar parties makes for a lot of detours. The clubs are filled with revelers.

March 5th, 1:45 p.m.: Not only did I enjoy a leisurely train ride on the Gold Line to South Pasadena, but I entertained myself thoroughly going in and out of shops on Mission Street and arriving a good 20 minutes early for the SinC event.

So, I went across the street to the Kaldi Coffee and Tea at 1019 El Centro for an espresso to wait. Most of the patrons were lookers (something about those art students and engineering students is hot) ...even the bespectacled nerdy beauty behind the counter. Oh, that blase attitude of liberal arts grad students! Yum! Maybe part of it is cuz I use to help my dad grade his students work back when I was in the eighth grade (if they only knew!). Sometimes, when the foreign students were left alone over the holidays with no place to go we would have them over for dinner. They would kill me at our pool table, but I didn't mind.

More patrons came in and out of the cafe as I sat, listening to "Sing, Sing, Sing" and other big band hits. This cafe is art student central, a little touch of Cambridge in the San Gabriel Valley (the breeders are all in the cafes on Mission street).

It wouldn't be LA is there wasn't a CREW PARKING sign across the street, and one of the patrons had a jacket with "The Contender/Crew Season II" across the back.

Twelve stained glass art pieces hang in the windows, including a homage to Route 66 (Mission Street was part of the fabled highway) and my favorite piece in the place of honor over the door, a rendering of the facade of the Pan Pacific Auditorium. I picked up some Art Night Pasadena guides while I was there.

The triangular-shaped Buster's Cafe next to the train tracks on Mission had the chocolate croissant I'd craved; a block away at Zinnia's, at 1040 Mission St. there was a t-shirt lettering kit that I want. ...not need, but want.

Had I not come on a whim to South Pasadena today, I might not have heard that next Friday was Art Night, when a number of galleries, art organizations and the venerable Norton Simon Museum throw open their doors, with shuttle buses carrying throngs from venue to venue. The quite provincial Pasadena at times doesn't let the rest of LA in on when they're doing these sorts of things. They like to thumb their noses up at the rest of Southern California quite a bit.

Well, I see people heading into the library now, so I better make my way back across the street.

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