Stan’s Obligatory Blog

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1/20/2019

Laurel and Hardy

Filed under: — stan @ 6:17 pm

Today’s bike club ride was Laurel and Hardy theme. The plan was to ride to North Hollywood to visit Ollie’s grave, and then to Forest Lawn to see Stan.

Right at the start, we had a small problem. Turns out today was the Pasadena Half-Marathon, and the course was using the Colorado bridge that we were planning on crossing. So we had to take a detour around. Then we got back on track and rode to NoHo.

After visiting Ollie, we headed south to Priscilla’s for snacks and drinks. Then we continued on to Forest Lawn. Stan’s grave is in the Court of Liberty, which is all the way in the back, high up on the hill.

The route home went through Griffith Park, down the L.A. River a bit, and then home by way of Highland Park and South Pasadena.

47 miles.

Route map and elevation profile

12/30/2018

Rose Parade Preview

Filed under: — stan @ 3:26 pm

The L.A. Times had a photo a few days ago of a float for the Rose Parade being built at Fiesta Parade Floats in Irwindale. I looked up where it was, and it turned out to be right near the Irwindale Metro Rail station. I also knew of another shop where they build floats in Irwindale, and I also looked up the location where the city of Sierra Madre builds their float. And then we had a theme for the ride. The plan was to ride out through Sierra Madre, and go to Classic Coffee in Glendora, and the come home by was of Irwindale.

At the Rose Float Barn in Sierra Madre, we got a chance to peek inside and see the float being decorated. The one float shop that I already knew about in Irwindale wasn’t much to see. There was an awning with nothing under it, and just a sign that the float they’d built was parked over in Pasadena to be decorated. But the scene at Fiesta Parade Floats was pretty good. They had 8 or 10 floats under construction inside, and the door was open so we could see them. There was a big crowd of people there to help, and there were pallets of flowers outside, ready to be put on the floats. There were even about five local news trucks there, which I thought was funny, since the only time I ever see that many news trucks in one place is at Caltech after an earthquake.

40 miles.

Route map and elevation profile

12/23/2018

It’s a Wonderful Ride

Filed under: — stan @ 2:45 pm

Today’s bike club ride was our annual “It’s a Wonderful Life”-themed ride. It’s a combination of celebrity grave and movie location tours. The first stop was at Forest Lawn in Glendale to see James Stewart, since he was the actor who brought George Bailey to life. Then we went for snacks at Paradise Bakery in Glendale. The final stop was to see the house that was used for the Martini family home in Bailey Park. The brief scene of them moving into their new house was the only scene in the movie that was filmed on location. Finally, on the way back, we rode over Devil’s Gate Dam to have a look at how L.A. County is trying to dig out the sediment that has collected behind the dam.

39 miles.

Route map and elevation profilue

12/16/2018

The Cocoanut Grove Mural

Filed under: — stan @ 2:59 pm

This past week, I saw an article in the L.A. Times about how a neighborhood group in Koreatown wanted the L.A. Unified school district to paint over a mural on the wall of the RFK Community School. The mural depicted Ava Gardner and some palm trees, with a red and blue sunburst background. Apparently, they thought the sunburst pattern looked too much like the Japanese battle flag. Granted, Japan has a history of using Korea as their punching bag, and they have been behind a lot of bad things happening to Korea, but this seems like a bit of a stretch. But in any event, I thought we should go see it.

The route went through downtown and past USC. On the way into downtown, we stopped to see an AIDS memorial in the park just outside downtown. After passing USC, we headed north to Koreatown. We stopped to see the mural, and the for bagels at Noah’s in Larchmont. Then home by way of Chinatown and the Arroyo Seco bike trail. And just to top it all off, we saw the two-legged dogs again. It’s been several years since we first saw them, and if I didn’t have pictures from the first time, I’d think that they were just part of a weird fever dream. But we saw them again today.

44 miles.

Route map and elevation profile.

12/9/2018

Downey

Filed under: — stan @ 2:24 pm

Today’s bike ride was a trip to Downey to visit the oldest operating McDonald’s, and the to the Columbia Space Center museum to see the boilerplate model of the Apollo Command Module on display outside. We stopped for snacks at 3rd Street Coffee, and then came home by way of the Rio Hondo bike trail.

46 miles.

Route map and elevation profile

12/2/2018

Ciclavia Heart of L.A.

Filed under: — stan @ 6:44 pm

Today was the final Ciclavia of 2018. It was the “Heart of L.A.” route, which is basically from East L.A. to the west side of downtown. So the plan was to ride down to pick up the route in East L.A., and then ride through downtown, and then on up to Echo Park. We stopped for snacks and drinks at Valerie Confections in Echo Park, and then home by way of Highland Park and South Pasadena.

42 miles.

Route map and elevation profile

11/18/2018

Armistice Day

Filed under: — stan @ 8:38 pm

Last Sunday was the 11th, which we know as Veteran’s Day, but was originally Armistice Day, commemorating the end of the First World War. But the smoke from the Woolsey Fire was blowing east that day, so we ended up cancelling the ride. So this Sunday we did our Armistice Day ride. The theme was to go see a pair of memorials to the war here in Los Angeles. The first was in Pershing Square in downtown L.A. General Pershing was the commander of the U.S. forces on the Western Front in the war. The second was a grove of trees near Dodger Stadium that were planted in the 1920s in memory of the dead from the war. Aside from that, the route was just a meander around central Los Angeles.

47 miles.

Route map and elevation profile

11/4/2018

Another In-N-Out Burger Tour

Filed under: — stan @ 8:45 pm

After our visit to the In-N-Out Burger museum a few weeks ago, I was looking at the In-N-Out Burger web site, and in particular, their page about the history of the company. And from that, I put together another little In-N-Out-themed tour.

The first sight is the In-N-Out on Foothill in Pasadena. It turns out that that’s the oldest In-N-Out still operating in its original building.

They currently have 335 locations in six states, and of those, only five do not have a drive-through window. And it turns out that one of them is in Glendale. So that was the second sight.

Another tidbit about the company was the the founder, Harry Snyder, was a big fan of the movie, “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World”. So beginning in 1972, he started having a pair of crossed palm trees planted in front of new In-N-Out restaurants. He said that In-N-Out was his treasure, so the trees were his nod to the “Big ‘W’” where the treasure was buried in the movie.

So that was our theme for today.

45 miles.

Route map and elevation profile

10/28/2018

Down for the Count – 2018

Filed under: — stan @ 8:43 pm

It’s the Sunday before Halloween, so it’s time for the annual “Down for the Count” ride to Culver City to visit Bela Lugosi’s grave. Someone comes and decorates for Halloween every year.

Our route out there is pretty straightforward. We head downtown, and then pick up the bike lane along the Metro Expo line out to La Cienega, and then the Ballona Creek bike path to Culver City. On the way back, we stopped at La Dijonaise in the old Helms Bakery building for snacks and drinks. I liked the signs they had outside the bathrooms. They truly were all-inclusive for men, women, and those in-between.

After snacks, we took Venice Blvd and 7th St back to downtown L.A. Then the Arroyo Seco bike trail to South Pasadena. At that point, I bailed out and took Metro Rail just to get home a little earlier, since I was planning on going back downtown to go see the Hapa.Me exhibit at the Japanese museum in Little Tokyo.

50 miles.

Route map and elevation profile

10/21/2018

Michael Myers

Filed under: — stan @ 2:15 pm

Today was the first of two planned Halloween-themed rides. I recently read that the 1978 film “Halloween” was largely filmed in South Pasadena, and in particular, the house that Michael Myers lived in is a designated historical landmark, and had been moved to a location right next to the Metro Station in South Pasadena. So that was our sightseeing for today.

South Pasadena isn’t very far away, to the actual sightseeing was early in the ride, but that’s all right. We rode down there and saw the house. Then we continued on and made a big loop down to Montebello, and then up the San Gabriel River to Duarte. Along the way, we passed the Spanglish Kitchen in Alhambra. From the reviews, it sounds pretty good. After riding up the river bike trail, we rode into Monrovia to have snacks at Merengue.

Coming home, we rode through Sierra Madre for the first time in a while.

44 miles.

Route map and elevation profile


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