Sunday, February 19, 2017

"Grotesque: comically or repulsively ugly or distorted"

This is a reference to a new fad in the Body Modification world.  It is getting the whites of your eyes tattooed.  I'm against for the very simple reason that the end result might be a massive infection followed by blindness for the rest of the tattooed's life.

Disclaimer:  Let me say that I don't have and never have had any problem with tattooed or pierced people.  This is a free country and if you want to spend painful hours -- spine, upper shoulder, neck are said to be the most painful because of the numerous bones under the skin - getting inked, more power to you.  Interestingly enough the soles of the feet and palms of the hand are considered non-starters because the skin is often thicker than say the inside of the upper arm and as a result, shed skin.  And the tattoo. 

Back to having your eyeballs tattooed.  Dye is inserted into the area between the white and the sclera (?) as a one shot and then the dye is left to itself to spread out and color the white. 
Light blue, purple and black as well as the rare bloodshot red seem to be the colors of choice.

Two sources so that you can see for yourself (although can't recommend viewing them before or after a meal ...) tattoos or   BE = Body Enhancement

The above was presented as an interest in others and is not meant in any way to encourage readers to emulate these people who have dyed their eyeballs. 

Friday, February 17, 2017

Henny Penny and the Weathermen - The Sky Is Falling!

You'd think we'd all be inured to the hysteria with which the weather people greet storms these days.

For the last week, here and nationally, the forecasters have been bleating in terror about The Storm That Will Kill Us All.  Since previous storms, projected to do us all in, haven't I sensed a certain deja vu ...

This morning I finally pinpointed the source, perhaps, of this hysteria.  Many of you will be able to join me in remembering an old folk tale that we heard as children.  A brief summation, if you will.

Henny Penny the chicken is sucking up dried corn when an acorn falls off of a nearby tree and conks her on the head.  She didn't see that it was only an acorn and freaks out, believing that the sky is falling in on her.

In a panic - "The sky is falling!" -  she decides to notify the King and on her way to his palace, collects several animals to accompany her.  They include Turkey Lurkey, Goosey Loosey and the villain Foxy Loxy. 

Foxy Loxy convinces this gang to take shelter in his den.  "The sky can't fall into a hole in the ground," he reassures them.   They join  Foxy in his lair and Foxy and his family  kill and eat them all. 

While I am not advocating killing weather forecasters and eating them - because the thick pancake make-up and lashings of hair spray would undoubtedly ruin the digestion - I do think they could peddle back a bit on the hysteria.  I realize and sympathize that the weather, out here at least, is same-o, same-o day in and day out and that their excitement at finally having something to report is thrilling ... but, cautionary gesture - the sky is NOT falling. 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Get Harrison Ford Out of Our Skies!

Never mind Black Lives Matter (BLM which I thought stood for Bureau of Land Management) or Social Justice Warriors (oxymoron on a good day) or all of the rest who delight in breaking windows, torching cop cars and in all ways being disruptive.  I say, "Pish tosh!"

We are facing a real threat to our safety and well-being.  I don't think many of us drive police cars or go around carrying a crow bar.  I could always be wrong, but I don't think so on this.

We are facing genuine menace.  I am referring to actor Harrison Ford and his unalloyed attack on our country's golf courses, dry river beds and most recently a 737 110 seat plane while making a landing at John Wayne Airport. 

Tell me he wasn't confused when he allegedly asked the control tower if that airplane was supposed to be under him?

I read yesterday that the FAA may not get around to evaluating Ford/deciding on a plan of action for perhaps six months.  This is unacceptable.  Meanwhile, Ford is free to fly around, landing willy nilly at any emergency site he deems able to accept his aircraft.  Or not.    Skilled pilots rarely land on golf courses or dry river beds.  Runways are their landing site of choice.

Until this matter has been successfully adjucated, put the golf clubs in the garage  and go somewhere that does NOT have dry river beds.  Word.  Stay safe. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017


The title is the colloquial pronunciation of the word "foreigners."  With that out of the way ...

Ikea is running an ad for a new store location in Spanish.  Tell me you don't immediately understand what it's saying -  

El Nuevo Ikea Burbank.  1-5 en Olive Avenue/Verdugo. Obten detalles. 

If we can easily read this and translate it to English, why can't Spanish-speakers as easily read the message in English?  Ikea comes to us from Sweden.  Maybe they know meatballs better than Spanish ... incidentally, their Swedish Meatballs are said to be excellent. 

A Four-legged Fur-riner.  That would be a German Shepherd dog who took Best in Show last night at the Westminster Kennel Club's 141st contest.  Rumor, a female dog, is owned by four women and a man - Americans all, as is the dog. 

German Shepherds appeared back in 1892 in guess where?  Such was the enthusiasm for a dog that looked like a wolf, that a fan club sprang up.  And shut down a mere two years later over disagreements over what the dogs should look like.  More wolf-like or less? 

The Kennel Club lists them as "working dogs."  We've seen this live and in person at the K9 shows here in Redondo.  The thing about this breed that I really notice is the notably sloping hind quarters.  Even at rest, they look like they're sneaking around. explains that over the years, the dog's have been bred for a curved lumbar and longer bones.  His Website (above) can tell you all you ever wanted to know about these dogs including what judges look for in teeth (diagramed for your viewing pleasure,) wet or dry mouth, a masculine or feminine face and a great deal more..

An Irish Setter won his class; his name made me sit up straight - GrC, Ch Vermilion (one l) Sea Breeze; routinely called "Adrian."  Vermillion (two ls) was my maiden name. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

A Mixed Bouquet for Valentine's

"Here's your card today
But I think it would be nice
To give you candy tomorrow
(It'll be half price.)
     courtesy of Bruce Tinsley, Mallard Fillmore cartoonist

The above is a sentiment dear to the heart of Richie who forces me to buy Christmas cards the day after Christmas - "They're 50 per cent off!" he enthuses as he hustles me out to the car.

In earlier married years, Valentine's day was a big deal - card exchange, dinner out ... but after 34 years, it seems a little ... unnecessary somehow.  Furthermore, it is very difficult to get dinner reservations and I speculate that we have a great many young couples (25 to 45) that still go out.  Based on the number of baby buggies (the size of Volkswagens) seen locally many of them  probably have children of varying ages.   It's not really that pleasant dining out on this night - the restaurant understandably wants to clean up; servers scurry to serve as an inducement to "Eat awready and GO!"  I tell you who makes out - the babysitters!  And they earn it, make no mistake.  Some children's parents should pay a bonus for hazardous duty. 

But there are joys to be found right in your own home.  Last night's entertainment (and it was) was the 141st  Westminster Kennel Club "Best in Show" contest, live at Madison Square Garden.  Notes I scribbled during the broadcast:

The car wash dogs and/or the animated bath mat dogs.  These are the dogs who have long, floor-length coats and when they run the hair swooshes back and forth.  Since nothing of the dog is visible except for its head, and sometimes not much of that,  I wonder what the judges take note of - gait is visible, dog structure is not.   Every time I saw one of these dogs I burst out into spontaneous guffaws; they look as though they have wheels underneath all of that hair. 

Last night the judges examined Hounds, Toys, Companion Dogs, Non-sporting and Herding dogs (who didn't get to do their thing; they were just paraded around the ring like all of the other dogs.)

The shortest dogs don't use their knees; it's a stiff-legged gait - much like their handlers who all ran flatfooted which couldn't have been good for their livers - pound, pound, pound.  Thus there is a ramp from the show spot down to the ring floor.

I'm surprised that there are any rabbits left in the United States or most of Europe since hunting dog after hunting dog was "bred" to get rabbits.  In the companion-dog size, many were dogs that originated in Asia that I'd never heard of and one breed that arrived via the deserts of Arabia (as it was then.) 

The show continues tonight - we get it on Fox Sports 1 - but look around if Fox isn't in your area.  If in the worst case scenario you can't get it, get a copy of the 2000 movie "Best in Show" and live it vicariously. 

What's for dinner, you ask?  Baby crab cakes and peach champagne to start, followed by roast pork loin with Tiger sauce, grilled cauliflower with a touch of white balsamic and hash browns.  Bon appetite and a very happy Valentine's Day to you all. 

Monday, February 13, 2017

The Sadness of the VA Cemetery ...

Richie's brother Charlie and his wife Rosalind live on Long Island, NY, and twice a year they fly out here to see their daughter and her family who live in Studio City.  (Twice a year the daughter and family fly to Long Island.)

From here at the beach, one has a choice of two routes - the 405 North or La Cienega to Beverly Hills to Coldwater Canyon to Ventura Boulevard.   Yesterday - Sunday morning - we took the Freeway because traffic was stepping right along. 

Familiar sites flew by - Nordstroms, the cinema, Century City's skyscrapers until at last we were opposite the VA Cemetery just after Wilshire Boulevard.

This is a part of the trip I enjoy because I love to see the military precision in the ruler-straight lines between the headstone rows.  From any angle you view them, they are straight as a die.  Certainly it is a sad sight and I always say "thank you" mentally.

But yesterday it struck me.  There were no grave decorations - no flowers, no helium balloons - just row after row after row of plain white stones, shaped like tablets.  Like a giant's neatly-planted teeth.    

The lack of decoration, if you will, bothered me - maybe many of the graves held men/women whose families had all died out, too?  Perhaps flowers and balloons were forbidden?  So I looked it up.

This VA cemetery was opened on May 22, 1889, covers 114 acres which hold 89,000 graves of military and their spouses.  The cemetery's first guests were veterans of the Mexican-American War followed by the Civil War and then the Spanish American War on up to today's veterans of Afghanistan and Iraq. 

There are two dogs buried there - "Old Bonus" the mascot at the Old Soldiers Home and "Blackout" who fought in the Pacific during WW2.   Also of note, Wyatt Earp's father and Dean Martin's son Dean Paul Martin.

The chapel was renamed the Bob Hope Veterans Chapel in 2002 to honor Hope on his 99th birthday.

An additional 13 acres has been purchased to build columbarium (basically walls with niches for cremated remains containers) because there is no more space for coffin burials except for spouses of the deceased (they stack them.)   It is planned that these walls will contain another 89,000 people.

To answer the lurid decorations ban (I have personally seen a pair of child-sized flip flops, toy bears, and more in other cemeteries) the VA does permit fresh flowers (no plastic varieties allowed) and fancier decoration for 10 days before Easter and Christmas.   If you don't come and get your offerings, they are held in storage for a month and then destroyed.  The VA feels that dignity is better as a reminder.

And now I agree.  There is something so very moving about row after row of plan white crosses.  Perhaps aside from family and friends, the dead buried there are as anonymous as they may have been in life and yet ... they gave their lives for this country. 

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Progress Report

Richie's brother Charlie and his wife Rosalind flew in from New York yesterday in time for lunch at Tin Roof Bistro.  This has become a sort of tradition with us in that they pick a flight that gets in around noon/1 p.m. and we go there for a bite.  And a drink if their flight was a little bouncy wouncy  They had Tom Collins, Richie a beer and I had a flute of sparkling prosecco.  Bonus points - I wasn't anywhere near an airplane all day yesterday..

Today is the bi-annual piano recital for C & R's grandsons, followed by a brunch at the house.  The little kids performing at these recitals crack me up.  They haven't figured out the bow/curtsy that starts their gig so they bend over and stick their little butts out.  Hilarious! 

Hope to run story and photos on the very interesting and educational Musical Instruments Museum, Phoenix, tomorrow.