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November 29, 2011

10 p.m.

Return from Seattle -- home at 8 something. At 10 p.m. almost exactly, the sound of lots of helicopters in the distance, across Elysian Park, across Sunset, but not that far -- downtown. A welcome-home procession? Not likely. It appears Occupy L.A. is being taken down. So much for that moment of pride in the tolerance, strength, and originality of our city government and police force.

A short while later, I think I hear the sound of chanting. Turns out to be the sound of my neighbors' TV.

The counterrevolution will be televised.

November 24, 2011


Too many things to be thankful for, including this day of thanks. Shake a big jar of thankful and out sprinkles the following:
Thanks for new friends and old friends, my neighbors, my chickens. Thanks my dog didn't really bite the man who said she bit. Thanks my cat Monkey isn't as crazy as she looks; and that my cat Valentine is canny about the outdoors. Thanks my hen Cutie Patootie survived surgery as well as the condition that made it necessary, and thanks the lonesome dove survived to regrow her feathers and fly away.
Thanks for the freeway doves, for Fix Cafe, for Delilah Bakery, tiny mandarin oranges, and rain ... for everything that is good. For Seattle, where we are spending the holiday.
And thanks that my daughter is having fun today. It doesn't get better than that.

November 18, 2011

I saw this horrible car...


...a couple of weeks ago in front of the Tropical Cafe on Parkman/Sunset. Put horrible in quotes, because the car isn't horrible, actually. And it made me laugh, which made me feel a twinge of guilt, as I suspected sincerity on the part of the writer. But I was annoyed, too, because if I didn't already know that "everything is horrible," would now be the time to learn it? At Sunset and Parkman, in front of Sun Lake Drugs and the Silversun liquor store? There is such a thing as too many words -- too many messages rolling around on wheels, getting fat on billboards, crowding my eyes, blocking the view. It's an overgrown thicket, this landscape of words! Someone get a word whacker!

November 16, 2011

Tin foil hat for Elysian Reservoir?

Just a few months ago the citizens of this area thought the lid issue was sealed. After years of discussion, planning, meetings, and input, a plan was in place to cover the Elysian Park Reservoir in such a way that there would be usable park and green space above it. But last April DWP dropped the green plan in favor of a cheaper cover: floating tin foil. They want to cover it in aluminum instead of plants, to save money. City Maven mentions it today.

There have been calls on a neighborhood list serv to speak out: a final public meeting on the issue is set for December 6 at the Department of Water and Power, at 1:30 p.m., Room 1555-H, 111 North Hope Street.

Christine Peters, head of the Citizens Committee to Save Elysian Park, urges residents to speak up, objecting to the price-chopper option in these terms:

DWP wants to cover our reservoir with an ugly, industrial-looking floating cover. If Silver Lake and other city reservoirs can have a beautiful solution, why can't we? Why is our neighborhood being singled out for an ugly, cheap solution? Please send letters to the Board of Water and Power Commissioners who will decide the fate of Elysian Reservoir on DECEMBER 6, 2011.
The negotiation over how to cover Elysian Reservoir in Elysian Park has been going on for over 20 YEARS! Now, with all the City reservoirs completed except two, and with the economy conveniently in shambles, DWP wants to sell our Community short. An attractive buried landscaped tank, the Community's choice, will create 1) additional meadow parkland with trees and playing fields and 2) maintain the visual beauty of the 40-acre canyon forever.
The floating cover will 1) turn Elysian Reservoir into an eyesore, an industrial, man-made object plopped in the middle of a beautiful 40-acre canyon in Elysian Park, 2) which will have to be replaced over and over again.

What kinda choice is that? Cluck.

November 15, 2011


Looks like nature, the true owner of us all, has foreclosed on this bench. On a quiet and somewhat wild street in Echo Park, where such things are permitted to happen naturally, in view. Chicken Corner's advice? Don't sit here too long! Keep moving.


November 9, 2011

All about bats

I don't know what it says about bats that I love the little critters so much. The way they sleep upside down, or fly unpredictably, their smushy, mamalian little noses, or the delicate, fancy wings. Maybe it's the way they come out at dusk -- crespusculars, they are, like deer.

When I was in fourth grade in a public school in Washington, D.C., my entire class couldn't go into the classroom one morning because a bat had come in overnight. The horror! I wanted to see it, but was prevented: "It's not safe!" Who? Me? Or the tiny winged mammal?

There aren't many bats in Los Angeles, I have noticed. The last time I saw bats was late August (yes, late August) in Palm Springs. They flew over the swimming pool at dusk, lifting my mood, which was sluggish after spending an entire afternoon hiding from the blazing heat in an air-conditioned hotel bedroom.

Recently, I've been trying to read Randall Jarrell's long-ish children's story, The Bat-Poet, to my daughter. But she has made it clear she'd prefer to reread Captain Underpants, which no one thinks is funny anymore because we have read it too many times. (On the other hand, if I told her the title was Captain Batty Pants she might give it a try.) Perhaps this will change after Saturday, which is when the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy will hold a bat-informational at Vista Hermosa Park. It starts at 3:30., and it's described like this:

Sat, November 12th, 3:30pm Myth-busting Bats. It doesn't matter if you think of them as flitter mice, vampires, or har- bingers of evil, bats are some of the most remarkable of mammals, not least because they are the only ones that fly. Enjoy learning the real story about these master flyers and sonic experts. Meet at the Grotto Amphi- theater. 2 hours.

November 8, 2011

Environmental scanning...

...and lo and behold! This mythological creature, who recently mounted himself at 1930 Echo Park Avenue -- 2011's answer to the legendary Show Pony boutique, which used to be stabled a few blocks south on EP Ave., in the space Tavin now occupies.

Some women who were working in Echo Outpost's former studio (Outpost has moved) told me that there will be a grand opening, this Friday, 11-11-11, all day and into the night, for their new vintage/designer sportswear shop, named "The Dog Show."

A dog and unicorn show? Or a new kind of wildlife.


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