Saturday, July 31, 2010

Lizzie Caplan crush

You may not recognize her immediately but if you've seen True Blood (tv show), Hot Tub Time Machine (movie), Party Down (tv show) or even Cloverfield (movie), then you've definitely seen her. 

And I think she's great. 

She has a cool hippie intelligence that's worked well in all her roles.  And she's hot. 

I hope she goes on to bigger and better things.  She deserves to go as far as her ambitions take her. 

Apparently she has a cat and she lives in the Hollywood Hills (thanks Wikipedia!) but does she have a vet???  Lizzie, call me.  You and Lisa Turtle will get the best care. 

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Day at Long Beach

If you look at a map of LA, you have the "valley" to the north, Beverly Hills and Hollywood just south of that, a lot of urban jungle in the middle and then you have Long Beach to the south.  Today I decided to go to Long Beach to see what it was all about. 

There were a couple of options for my transportation.  Walking was definitely out of the question because nobody walks in LA even if the distance is only a couple of blocks.  Driving was considered but then I would have had to think and signal and pay attention to the road and avoid cops and it just seemed like too much hassle.  I settled on the metro.  Yes, LA does have a metro system and I'll explain how it works. 


That's right.  Absolutely free.  Oh sure you can buy a ticket but really what is the point?  Nobody checks to see if you have one.  You can pass through the turnstiles without inserting it.  You can exit the station and no metrocop will bother you.  It's an HONOR SYSTEM.  I swear to God that is the truth and that is so dang funny, it is cracking me up right now.  There is no honor in LA, everyone knows that.  I recently read that the metro lines are losing over 5 million a year in lost revenues due to their trusting nature.  Is it any wonder why LA county is broke? 

So go ahead.  Ride for free.  Apparently a lot of other people do so why be left out?  Save up your money for that Beemer you've always wanted. 

And there is an added bonus when travelling on the metro.  You get to come in close contact with crazy people; people who scream and shout and make sudden movements for no apparent reason.  These people don't frighten me.  I'm more concerned about the quiet types with their hoodies and their oversized sunglasses and their earphones who look as if they'll get up and slit some one's throat on their way out the door.  I'm pretty sure that kind of behavior would carry a fairly stiff fine but nothing was posted so I'm really not sure. 

Anyhoo ... 

The first stop was Anaheim street.  The reason why I wanted to stop here was because it was the gateway to Cambodia town.  (Yes, I am a little obsessed with Cambodia right now ...)  Long Beach has the largest population of Cambodians outside of southeast Asia. 

Wherever you are, you are here. 

I ate at the Siem Reap restaurant which, as the name suggests, is Cambodian.  It was a pretty cool restaurant; the service was friendly and attentive, the food was great and all those pictures and paintings on the wall made me feel like I was back in the shadows of Angkor Wat.  

They serve pig's blood soup.  I am not an adventurous diner.  I opted for the chicken and beef skewers.  

For desert, they served a free bowl of sticky rice and coconut milk.  Yum. 

I like taking pictures of murals for some reason.  This one says, "How would it feel if your mother cried every day?" 

This is not a very happy mural.  And I'm a little confused why Queen Nefertiti is hanging out with Jesse Jackson and basketball players . 

Weird.  The symbolism is lost on me. 

And here is a deal.  A tooth extraction for $49.  I'm pretty sure the technique involves a door and piece of string so buyer beware.   

Truth in advertising? 

This is just some building which is photoshoped into oblivion.  Viva la digital age! 

And here we have the Long Beach lighthouse ... 

And this is the Queen Mary.  This ship is now permanently docked and functions as a hotel.  Some say it is haunted.  I'm thinking this is a good way to reel in the tourists. 

This is an awesome picture of blurry grass.  I pride myself on my picture taking abilities. 

Self-portrait time.  Yep, that's me sucking back on my iced coffee.  I needed the energy for the long trip back home. 

Overall, Long Beach was an interesting place to visit.  I hope to go back and tour the Queen Mary.  And maybe the Aquarium. 

Next time, I take the car.  Travelling on the metro during rush hour with all those crazy non-paying passengers was just not as much fun as I had hoped.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Memories of Cambodia

I was just going through my pictures and came across some that haven't yet been posted to my blog. 

First up, we have the bustling Siem Reap market.  There are very things that I can think of that are more pungent than this place on a hot day.  Get your meat early because there ain't no refrigeration! 

Next up, we have the "special" Khmer BBQ.  They have quite a selection.  And no, I wasn't brave enough to try the snake. 

And this was a bizarre but common sight; pigs on bikes.  These pigs were definitely alive and I'm guessing they were so calm because they gave up the fight after a few minutes.  Or maybe they were stunned.  It was a little hard to tell. 

I have more exciting news about Cambodia coming very soon!  Stay tuned!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Okay, instead of writing a long post on this blog, I've decided to just point you in the direction of my other blog: 

If you haven't checked it out, I've recently posted a new article about the song Celluloid Heroes and walking down Hollywood Boulevard. 

Please have a look and if you like it, you should even become a follower.  That way, I won't feel as if I'm writing in a vacuum.  And if you really like it, you could send me money and in return, I'll send you good karma.  And maybe a free t-shirt.  It depends on how much you send me. 

Friday, July 16, 2010

The definition of a Dutchie

If you've ever been to Ontario, Canada you've passed by lots and lots of Tim Hortons donut shops.  They are everywhere.  About as common as Starbucks in Los Angeles.  They aren't all that great but I get a warm and fuzzy feeling when I enter one because they are distinctly Canadian. 

In case you're wondering, Tim Horton was a Canadian hockey player who died in a car crash way back in 1974.  Sadly he never saw how famous his name became.

As you might expect, this chain of stores serve a lot of donuts and one variety is called the dutchie.  It is a square glazed donut with raisins.  I was a little disappointed on my last trip to Canada because the dutchies at Tim Hortons have become a lot smaller and not quite as appetizing.   But a donut is a donut and just like pizza, even when it's bad, it's still pretty good. 

Here is the last dutchie I ate. 

When some people hear the word "dutchie", they think of that eighties song called Pass the Dutchie by Musical Youth.  For years I thought that a dutchie in this context meant a joint but after a little research, I found out that it likely refers to a cooking pot.  However, the original song on which this song was based has  definite drug references; there is no question that Pass the Koutchie refers to sharing a cannabis pipe. 

But whether you have a Canadian Donut, a Dutch cooking pot or a Jamacian pipe, I think you should still pass it from the left hand side.

It's the polite thing to do.   

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

I want to be Jack Johnson

Or at least have his state of mind.

The cottage life

I'm back from Canada with a suitcase full of dirty laundry and a memory card full of pictures. 

Since you probably don't want anything to do with my worn apparel, I will give you some of my photos instead. 

Here is the family cottage.  From this angle, it looks pretty good.  We've had to do some modifications over the years; we took down the chimney because it was pulling the wall down and we had to re-attach the bathroom after a succession of bad winters but overall, this baby has stood up to a lot of abuse. 

The cottage is right on lake Belwood in southwestern Ontario, Canada.  This lake was man-made after the construction of a dam and has provided me with many, many great summers.   

I prefer to stay away in the winter.  The area is very cold, desolate and not very welcoming, unless of course you are a snowmobiler

There are quite a few things to do here in the summer months.  

Canoeing ... 

Watching Canadian Geese ...

Painting your fingernails ...

Teaching the dog to swim ...

Posing for the camera ...

Playing bagpipes on the dock ...

My brother likes to squeeze his bag and make a lot of noise.  We come from a Scottish background and my brother has taken this further than most people. 

When I was young, I learned how to play the chanter (kinda like the first step in learning how to play the bagpipes) but I didn't enjoy it; the teacher held a ruler over my fingers and if I made a wrong note, he would hit me with the damn thing.  Needless to say, I switched my musical instrument over to the piano because the instruction was a lot less violent. 

There is also seagull chasing ...

Never let a crazy eight year old drive the boat!   

And finally, the sunset.   

I'm not sure if I'll make it up again in August.  The summer is so short up there; by September, the cold wind starts blowing, the leaves start to change color and everyone starts thinking about the long winter ahead. 

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

At Lake Belwood

This week I'm up in Canada at the family cottage that we've owned for about fifty years. I spent many of my summers here when I was a kid and even though I didn't always appreciate it then, I certainly appreciate it now.

My two brothers are here--it's a family reunion that is about ten years overdue-- and amazingly enough everyone is getting along. The septic system is ready to give up so I anticipate escalating grouchiness if the toilet backs up. Nothing ruins a family reunion faster than a full shitter.

This is the cottage. It has taken a pounding over the years due to the incredibly harsh winters. I also took a pounding from the incredibly harsh winters which is why I moved to Las Vegas.

Lake Belwood. I learned to ski when I was seven and I swam across the lake when I was twelve. It's an incredibly beautiful place but really only usable for three summer months. After that the cold winds come, the leaves change colour and everyone starts preparing for the cold white stuff.

And the sunset version. It ain't Hawaii but I still consider myself very lucky to be here.

Back in LA next week.

-- Posted from my iPhone

Location:County Road 7,Centre Wellington,Canada

Friday, July 2, 2010

Laws of L.A.


definition:  to have an appointment cancel because the other person has a sudden commitment with another more important person (usually a celebrity). 

"I'm sorry Phil but I can't make lunch today.  Paris called me up and wants me to see her new dog furniture." 

"Damn, I've been out-friended!" 

Hazards of the occupation

You might think being a veterinarian is a fun and glamorous job.

I beg to differ. 

Sometimes it gets pretty shitty.