Stan’s Obligatory Blog

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No ’sexy-time’ in America…

Filed under: — stan @ 10:09 pm

Today we went to the Center for Inquiry in Hollywood to hear a talk by Marty Klein titled “America’s War on Sex: Why the Christian Right is Obsessed With Your Sexuality”. This talk came highly recommended, since Nina Hartley said he was a good speaker when I’d mentioned to her that we were going to go.

His talk was very good and very entertaining. Sadly, it was also a bit depressing, but that wasn’t due to his delivery or skill. It was just the subject matter. The most memorable quote:

“Conservatives want to make government smaller. They want to shrink it down until it can fit under your bedroom door.”

Anyway, it was a fun time, and afterward, we went to Babeland and bought a new sex toy. That seemed appropriate in some way.

And Nina was right. Marty Klein is a good speaker, and if you get a chance, go see him.


Tattoos on a chilly day

Filed under: — stan @ 8:41 pm

tattoo show
Today I went out to the Los Angeles County Fairgrounds in Pomona for the winter edition of the Body Art Expo. I go to all the local tattoo conventions. I have a whole circle of friends there that I see nowhere else.

Today was a beautiful day, but chilly by SoCal standards. For a tattoo convention, this is a Bad Thing. The whole idea is to be warm and comfy so that everyone can show off their decorated skins. And that all breaks down when it’s cold.

Nevertheless, I soldiered on. I saw a bunch of my tattoo friends there, which was fun. I also met a woman with a trained rat on her shoulder. She said that it was a ’service rat’ that would alert her to impending seizures. The rat had a little leash with a tag that identifed him as a service animal. That was the first time I’ve ever seen a non-dog service animal.

God’s Girls had a booth there. My friend Erica models for them. She wasn’t there, but I stopped in and talked to them a bit, so I thought I’d put in a plug for them here.

It was a fun day. I took some pictures. I visited with friends. Pictures are in my tattoo conventions gallery.


Magicopolis and a trip to the beach

Filed under: — stan @ 9:43 pm

Today we took Lucinda out to Santa Monica to Magicopolis. They have an afternoon show on Saturdays.

Inside the theater, I was glad to see that the building had been retrofitted for seismic safety. And in between the steel beams, they had had various famous people sign their names on the bricks. That was kind of fun. David Bowie’s note was just behind our seats.

The show was a lot of fun. They did most of the standard magician’s tricks, but with their own spin. The show stars Steve Spill and his wife Bozena Sparrow, and part of the act centers on her being from Eastern Europe. In one bit, she comes out on stage with a box labeled “Acme” and talks in her fractured English about how she ordered a trick from Acme Magic. It is the ‘disappearing bandanna’, but then she pulls out a banana. She follows the intructions, folding it over and totally squishing it. Then she makes it disappear. This was a new twist on an old trick.

Overall, this show was a lot of fun. They also have a little magic shop in the front of the theater. Lucinda got a set of foam balls, complete with instructions on how to do a few tricks with them.

After the show let out, we decided to walk down to the beach. It was a nice day, and it was only a few blocks away. When we got there, Lucinda ran around in the surf and collected shells until the sun went down. Then, on the way out, we saw a seagull resting on the sand next to an empty malt-liquor can. We figured he was sleeping it off.

At the top of the bluff, I got a nice picture of the sunset over the beach. Then we went home. It’s days like this where I just marvel at how much I like living in Los Angeles. It’s really and truly my most favorite place.


Queen Mary and the submarine

Filed under: — stan @ 7:35 pm

Today we went down to Long Beach to see the Russian submarine and the Queen Mary. Cathy and I had been there to see the submarine once when Lucinda was a baby. Now that she’s big enough to climb through it, she wanted to see it. And we hadn’t been on the Queen Mary tour since 1988. When we got married, we spent our honeymoon playing tourist in Los Angeles.

The submarine is tied up next to the Queen Mary. There is a little building with an exhibit and gift shop by the entrance. They were playing Russian martial music, which the sign said they have available on CD. Just in case you’re missing the old days of the Soviet Union.

We took the tour through the submarine. Lucinda was amused at how small it was inside, but climbing through small spaces is easy for a kid.

After the submarine, we took the tour of the Queen Mary. It was interesting, although I kind of think the computer in the radio room was not original equipment.

We stopped for lunch at one of the onboard restaurants. They had had an exhibit of Hurrell glamour photographs of Hollywood stars from the 1930s on the walls. That was interesting, and it also fit with the whole art-deco theme on the Queen Mary.

Continuing the tour, we headed up to the bow. Lucinda was amazed at how heavy the anchor chain links were. We also saw a pelican flying among the seagulls overhead, which is a little unusual. Then we headed down to the engine room. I loved the 1930s control panels. We also saw the propeller, which was interesting, since it’s something that’s not normally visible on ship like this.

Of course, I also took a bunch of pictures of Lucinda. They are in her photo album.



Filed under: — stan @ 5:58 pm

A few weeks ago, I saw a post on Needled about Andrew Krasnow who is an artist who works with human skin. And he was having an exhibit at a gallery right here in Hollywood. Needless to say, this sounded interesting, somewhat disturbing, and certainly something not to be missed.

So today was went over to Hollywood to the ADM Project gallery on Santa Monica Blvd. Appropriately enough, it was right across the street from Hollywood Forever Cemetery. It was a fairly small exhibit, but it was certainly unique.

Because of laws about human body parts, none of the art was for sale. But they were selling a poster of one of his flags, and also a fine-art photo print of “The Hollow Muscle”, which was a heart made out of skin. Also, the art is available for extended display. Sort of like a ‘lease’.

We’ve never seen anything else quite like it. And it was disturbing, in the way that good art should be. So we enjoyed it a lot.

The exhibit runs through December 14.


Go-Go’s 25th Anniversary

Filed under: — stan @ 11:49 pm

We recently saw that the Go-Go’s were going to be playing a show at the Greek Theater in honor of the 25th anniversary of “Beauty and the Beat”. Cathy and I both saw them back in the early ’80s when we were young and single, and we also went to their reunion show in 1989 when we were married. So we thought it might be fun to go and take our daughter along. She knows all the songs, and she thought this sounded like great fun.

We had an early dinner and headed over. We got parked in solid there and walked into the amphitheater. It was dusk when we got there. The opening band was Morningwood, and they were very good. Lucinda didn’t ask what their name meant, which was probably just as well.

The Go-Go’s took the stage at about 9:00 and their first set was all the songs from “Beauty and the Beat”, which was a nice trip down memory lane. It’s hard to believe it’s been 25 years, and their songs obviously appeal to the younger crowd. There were lots of people in our age bracket there with their kids, and the kids were all singing along and looking like they were having a great time.

The first time I saw them was in 1981 at a tiny little club in Houston. My friend Mike got free tickets, and we spent the entire show pressed up against the stage, practically looking up Charlotte Caffey’s skirt. But it was Jane Weidlin that we all fell in love with. She had the best stage presence and personality, and we all left there that night with a huge crush on her. And tonight she showed that she still has it. She bounced around the stage, and my crush was renewed again. But then again, I’ve always had a thing for cute girls with short black hair, even if they are in their 40s.

We got lucky in that their was a mom and her young daughter sitting next to us, so Lucinda and the other little girl enjoyed watching the show together. They danced in the aisle and sang along. It was very cute.

Towards the end, Lucinda started to get tired, but the show ended at 10:30, which wasn’t too late. The Greek has a curfew due to the houses nearby, so the shows there never go late. When it was over, we headed home. It was a fun little adventure.


Kid improv

Filed under: — stan @ 8:02 pm

Today we had a small adventure out in the Valley. Cathy had seen a listing for a comedy improv show for kids and by kids. It was at the L.A. Connection in Sherman Oaks. Back in the ’80s they used to do a monthly “improvision” show at the Nuart Theater in West L.A. where they would show an old, bad movie with the sound off, making up new dialog along the way. It was great fun, so we thought that Lucinda might like the kids’ version.

They had twelve kids in the show. They do a class in the afternoon, with the show at the end after the class. They did a number of different sketches. They were pretty good. Lucinda liked the show, and she said that she wants to try taking the class.

We also found out that they are doing a new show on the 23rd with “Cat Women on the Moon“, which was the first movie I ever saw them do, way back in 1982. We may need to go to that.


Bring on the dancing horses…

Filed under: — stan @ 10:58 pm

Cathy saw an item in the paper this week about the Fiesta of the Spanish Horse. It was at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center in Burbank. I’ve been by there hundreds of times on my bike, but I’d never been inside. So we decided that this might be something interesting.

We don’t really know anything about horses, but it was interesting to see them close-up and see the riding demonstrations. Apparently, a big part of their training is teaching them the distinctive gait. It looks a bit funny at first, but we got used to it. And in the show, they did it a lot, along with other moves that made the horses look like they were dancing. So overall, it was an interesting thing.


Movie costumes, neon art, and lunch at a big gay hangout

Filed under: — stan @ 8:49 pm

Today we had a little adventure in Los Angeles. The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising downtown had an exhibit of costumes from movies last year. This is the same place where we saw the “Star Wars” costumes last fall. We’d only seen some of this year’s movies, but it was still fun to see them close up. We saw costumes from “Harry Potter”, “King Kong”, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”, and such. We also saw the figures that were used for filming “The Corpse Bride”, as well as the Vogons from “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”. It was a nice little adventure.

After that, we walked across the park to the Museum of Neon Art and saw the current exhibit there. MONA is still easily our favorite art museum of all.

The last part of our adventure was to go to West Hollywood for lunch at the French Market Place. This was Lucinda’s first time there, and she liked it. And we found out that, despite it being a big gay hangout, they have a children’s menu and crayons there. They also have koi pond inside the restaurant, and Lucinda liked watching the fish. So overall, it was a fun afternoon.


Sightseeing Los Angeles

Filed under: — stan @ 8:32 pm

So I’ve been living here in L.A. for many years now, and I like sightseeing around the city. So I decided to put together a list of things I’ve seen that I think are amusing. Just to have it all in one place for future reference.

I’ll add new things to the map as I find them. And needless to say, Disneyland and the other usual ‘tourist’ things are not on my map.

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