Saturday, January 24, 2009

Home Shopping #2

I spotted this cutie in Bungalow Heaven and had to pull over. "Hey baby, whatchya doin' on this gray day? You look like a charmer to me." I took a picture, brought it home and brightened it a little to cheer it up.

Of course you can't tell a book by its cover, and location is everything. Let's see, what other cliches might apply here? Oh yeah: you'll have to look under the hood to find out if this house has good bones. Ouch.

Bungalow Heaven is a neighborhood, for those who don't know. The whole 'hood is on the National Register of Historic Places, which can be good and bad if you're a homeowner. If you're considering buying a historic property it's worth knowing everything you can about the National Register. In some ways it restricts you; in some ways it protects you.

I'm not in the business of selling houses, but I figured I'd post the contact information in case you're in the business of buying.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Future Queens of Doo Dah

I believe I mentioned I didn't get any good photos of the Doo Dah Parade last Sunday. I got there too late to get a good seat. But I got this shot of a couple of young spectators.

Some of the Doo Dah happens in the crowd. People wear their silly hats, their weird glasses, the things they would wear at Burning Man if they went (and if they wore anything). Doo Dah day is for getting our ya-yas out. Or our doo-dahs, you might say.

I'm bored with my wardrobe. It needs some whimsy.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Civic Center Perspective

Here's a model of Pasadena's Civic Auditorium. It's to scale, but it's not accurate; nobody gets to park on Green Street in front of the auditorium like that.

I want you to click on the photo so you can enlarge it and get a look at the art installations proposed for the plaza. On the left (east) is a piece by Hans Peter Kuhn called Lightfield. On the right (west) is a piece by Dennis Oppenheim called Thinking Caps. Pasadena citizens who care about the look of the city should do a couple of things very soon: read about the pieces here, do some web searching and see other photos and blog posts, and perhaps post opinions here.

And go to the Civic Center if this issue concerns you. This model stands inside the nice new headquarters wing just east of the auditorium. Anybody can walk in there and view it.

Then let the City Council know how you feel about these art works. Do it ASAP, my friends, because this Monday, January 26th, the Council is going to decide whether or not to spend many many millions installing these babies and they need to hear from you toot sweet.

I've received several emails from outraged citizens who want me to blog about these artworks. To tell the truth, I'm less concerned about the works than about their placement, not to mention the seriously bad timing of what looks like frivolous spending against the backdrop of national economic news. (Has anyone in charge here been reading the news? Anyone? Or are the numbers of beggars on the freeway off-ramps increasing because folks just like to beg?)

Some people don't want to have to look at pink and green hats when they step out onto the plaza in front of the Civic Center. I don't blame them. The hats are kind of ridiculous. But frankly I think the hats will hardly be noticeable in comparison with the visual slam that is the Paseo Colorado, with its featureless walls and neon signs blabbing about Tokyo Wako and Pacific Theatres.

Look, art is art. Some people will like it and some won't. That's practically how you define it. But Pasadena's Civic Center itself is a work of art. Or it was, before there was a shopping mall.

Not that we could choose to have it removed. I wasn't here but I'm sure the preservationists tried to prevent the building of it way back when. There was a time when citizens had an unobstructed view from the Civic Auditorium to the Central Library, with a wide avenue leading from one to the other. You can get an idea of it from the first page of this .pdf.

There's no bringing back the past. What do you think of the Civic Center's future?

Update: A link was posted today on Pasadena Insight: It takes you to the blog of the Pasadena Arts Council, where the public can vote “yes” or “no” on the proposed Convention Center public art. Who knew the Arts Council had a blog? Go vote!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

First Cut Contest: Page ?

With a screech of tires, a sports car, low to the ground and fire engine red, rounded a curve in the driveway and sped into view. The convertible top was down and the driver, wearing huge Jackie O sunglasses, the tails of the long scarf tied over her head flapping in the wind, looked as if she had no intention of stopping at the now-open gate.

Vining froze...

So goes a passage from Dianne Emley's crime thriller The First Cut. I'm not going to tell you on what page it appears because Diane's having a contest with her mailing list. It just so happens that a driveway like this one figures in the book and in one of Dianne's contest questions. So in case anyone from that mailing list is looking for cheap clues here, well, all I can say is,, thanks for stopping by!

Here are the rules
of the Pasadena Daily Photo First Cut Contest.
Here are the questions.

The first entry arrived last night with all correct answers! You may remember three winners will be drawn from the correct entries, so send 'em on in. I haven't decided who'll draw the winners if we have more than three correct entries. Maybe Boz. He's impartial. But I'm open to your suggestions.

There's one week to go. I'm still taking requests for photos of Pasadena locations in the book. Send your request in an email or in the comments (include the page number, please).

I'm privileged to be featuring Dianne Emley. She's been most gracious and helpful. She's so lovely you'd never know such a dark, spine-tingling story could come out of her! But tingling and dark it is.

Pasadena is full of artists of all types: painters, photographers, writers, musicians, actors, dancers, singers and variations of all those. I hope to feature many more here on PDP.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Celebration Day

Forgive me for indulging in a photo that could have been taken in any city, if it weren't for the fact that few people besides my husband are likely to have a "Local 3 Gore for President" 2004 campaign button. I think we got that while passing through Eureka, California (a great town). During the 2000 and 2004 elections we happened to be on the road. This time, we made it a point to be here in Pasadena. Not that we believe in jinxes or anything.

We're having a few neighbors over for brunch this morning to watch the ceremony on TV and toast our new president. In preparation I went back over to Wayne Nelson's store on North Lincoln Avenue to buy t-shirts so John and I could dress appropriately. Guess what? Wayne's in Washington for the inauguration. Another person I featured on the blog, Alice Gandy, wrote to let me know she was going. TWO Pasadena Daily Photo stars are at the inauguration today. I'm bursting with - not pride, but joy. What a thrill for Alice and Wayne. I can't wait to hear their stories.

I'm a little concerned, though. My friend Lisa gave me the Bush's Last Day key chain in the center of the photo. It was supposed to count down to today and for a while it worked fine. But about two weeks ago it went haywire. I don't know what happened. Maybe I walked by a magnet or Mercury is retrograde or...I don't want to think about it. Not that I believe in jinxes or anything.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Zen Monday: #32

Zen Monday is the day you experience the photo and give us your thoughts rather than me telling you what the photo's about.
There's no right or wrong.
If the photo evokes something in you, that's all it is.

As each new Zen Monday is posted, a label is added to last week's to further identify it.

Guest photographer: John Sandel.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

I Can't Take the Suspense

What is that, four stories? Five?

Aw hell, that's not so high. Ahem.

This man's hanging from a cable on a little chair. He has a bucket, and it looks like he's got a speaker of some sort so he can talk to his cohort on the ground.

My camera's got a telephoto setting but I rarely use it because it diminishes the photo quality. I didn't get a good close-up. However, I believe he's smiling.

Today's the Doo Dah Parade. Expect your favorite Pasadena bloggers to come up with something odd and/or silly for their next posts.