Stan’s Obligatory Blog

1/16/2005

Toluca Lake

Filed under: — stan @ 4:24 pm

Todays ride was “Toluca Lake”. We started out going straight west, over the historic Colorado Street Bridge into Eagle Rock and then on into Glendale. Then we went south a bit through the L.A. Equestrian Center and into Burbank. Our snack stop was at Priscilla’s in Burbank. After that, we continued west just a bit into Toluca Lake just to pass by Bob Hope’s old house. Then we came back by Forest Lawn and onto the L.A. River bike path. Apparently, something had happened along the part where the bike path runs along the freeway, as there was a fire truck, an ambulance, and a couple of Highway Patrol cars there. And also, one of the light poles was knocked over. Finally, we headed home through Eagle Rock. When we crossed into South Pasadena, we got a nice view of Mt. Baldy, complete with snow. Overall, it was a very pleasant ride.

43 miles.

Technorati tags: cycling

1/14/2005

My page rank is climbing again…

Filed under: — stan @ 10:37 am

A while back, I had the number one match in Google for the phrase “I hate Texas”. That was before I moved our web site to the new domain name. After the move, Google crawled us again, but that page had fallen to #73. But now that we’ve been on our new domain name for over four months, it’s climbing again. Today I see that my page is now up to number 34 in a search for “I hate Texas“. Things are looking up.

1/13/2005

Our house is falling apart (continued)

Filed under: — stan @ 6:24 pm

As I noted a while back, our house is falling apart. We managed to make it through the torrential rains without too much leakage, and today the roofing guy came out to fix the roof. He put a new roof on the laundry room and put a new crown on top of the house. But when he came down, he said we should have a look at our chimney, as it appears to be falling apart. I went up and took some pictures of the cracks in it. Most likely, they were caused by earthquakes, as our house has experienced several significant earthquakes nearby over the years.

Anyway, I guess we will have to decide if we want to do something about this.

1/11/2005

Woo-Hoo!

Filed under: — site admin @ 3:54 pm

I saw that Ryan at News to Hughes joined up with Google Adsense recently. I serve about four times the traffic of his site, so I thought I’d give it a try. So far, I’ve only put ads on three sets of pages:

http://www.1134.org/stan/dot-com – My gallery of dead dot-com web pages.
http://www.1134.org/stan/tattoo-faq/display.php – The interactive database of tattoo artist reviews
http://www.1134.org/stan/tattoos/gallery – Photo albums of tattoo conventions

These are the pages that people mostly seem to come to from Google searches, so they seemed like good places to try it out. And I see today that I got my first $0.03 from a click-through. Woo-Hoo!

1/9/2005

Sunday fun

Filed under: — stan @ 7:43 pm

Today we went to the Skeptics Society talk. The speaker was Jared Diamond talking about his new book, Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed. We’ve seen him before, and he’s an engaging speaker. I also read his other book, Guns, Germs, and Steel and enjoyed it immensely. From what he said today, it sounds like his new book will be worth a read. Also, he said that the L.A. County Natural History Museum is going to be doing a special exhibit on this topic starting May 1.

lake
It’s been raining for three days straight here, and the lake is back in our yard. Today was the biggest we’ve seen it get in nearly 10 years in this house.

1/8/2005

Tattoo Expo

Filed under: — stan @ 11:32 pm

tattoo convention
Today we went to the big Body Art Expo at the L.A. County Fairgrounds. As tattoo conventions go, this one is kind of lame in that it’s not put on by tattoo people, but at the same time, all our tattoo friends are usually there. We took Lucinda along, since she said that she wanted to go. We wandered around there and visited with everyone we knew. Lucinda got a little temporary henna tattoo, and we generally had a fun time.

1/6/2005

Earthquake!

Filed under: — stan @ 9:06 pm

news truck
We had an earthquake this morning. M4.4 centered near Fontana. This wasn’t a Big Deal as these things go, but it did make for a busy morning at my office. The non-seismologists at Caltech tend to measure earthquakes by the ‘news truck’ scale, and by that measure, this was only a ‘two truck’ earthquake. Still, it made a traffic spike on the Earthquake Hazards Program web servers, and generally made things busy for a while.

1/3/2005

My favorite girls

Filed under: — stan @ 9:41 pm

girls
Lucinda wanted to play dress-up with Mommy today. She picked out the clothes for both of them to wear, and then she insisted that I take a picture. They’re awfully cute, no?

1/2/2005

La Tuna Canyon

Filed under: — stan @ 1:26 pm

Today was another chilly day, threatening to rain. The general plan for today’s ride was to get as far away from the remnants of the Rose Parade as possible. So we went west to La Tuna Canyon. Gene said that today is the one-year anniversary of the Sunday Moderate Ride. We had the one obligatory flat tire on the ride up through La Crescenta, but aside from that, the climb up the canyon was pretty uneventful. At the top, I put on my jacket so as not to freeze on the way down. At the bottom of the big hill, we turned left on Glenoaks and headed back down through Sunland and Burbank. The snack stop was in Glendale at Paradise Bakery, where I had two chocolate eclairs. They make the best eclairs there. After that, we headed back on Kenneth to Mountain Ave, where I saw the nativity scene with signs pleading for the return of the baby Jesus. Then we turned left on Verdugo and headed back up Hospital Hill. From there, we took the standard route back through La Cañada.

42 miles.

Technorati tags: cycling

1/1/2005

It’s still more madness!

Filed under: — stan @ 7:36 pm
So today was the Rose Parade. We live right at the end of the parade route, so this affords us a somewhat odd view of the event. It began like a Soviet May Day, with an overflight by our most fearsome military aircraft. So I went outside and snapped a picture of them flying over the hedge. Then I took a short bike ride down to the park. The In-N-Out Burger mobile units were all set up and ready to feed the marching bands when they got there.
One thing I thought was a bit odd was that with all the Department of Father Homeland Security talk of terrorists wanting to attack an event like the Rose Parade, whose idea was it to give out a toy called a “Bomb Bag”?
After a while, the horses started to arrive. I thought that the cowgirls with the stars-and-stripes outfits were cute.
One guy seemed a bit concerned that the crowds might walk on his lawn. He put up a little temporary fence, just like the stores on Colorado Blvd.
The true nightmare scenario of an event like this is to need an ambulance. That happened this time. It wasn’t clear exactly what happened to the man, but they were doing CPR on him, so it couldn’t be good.
The mule group had a trailer that said, “Hauling World Champion Ass”.
Usually, all the horse people are just eating In-N-Out burgers when they get here, but this year, one guy brought a barbecue grill and set it up right out in the street.
Back down on the parade route, there was lots of trash left by all the people. A lot of it is Chick tracts and other religious pamphlets. The other thing we see is people bringing a mattress to sleep on and then leave it after the parade. But the city is on top of it. By tomorrow, all the trash will be gone, and it will be as if it never happened.
Of course, little girls love horses, and Lucinda is no exception. She went out with a bag of carrots.
This afternoon, we went to see the floats close-up. Who knew that the surface of Saturn was covered with dried apricots? Another odd thing was the Home Depot float, “Saturday in the Park”. It was not clear why it had a fire extinguisher mounted right on the front. And the Roto-Rooter float was kind of funny. What else would it be but a big tree with massive roots?


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