Stan’s Obligatory Blog

Happy Thanksgiving


Sunday fun

Filed under: — stan @ 5:21 pm

Today’s bike ride was conducted under threat of rain. We rode a big loop through Arcadia, San Marino, and Highland Park to end up by the Rose Bowl. We were going to do some more riding in the hills there, but it started to rain a bit. So we headed for home. Then the rain stopped, so we rode a bit more out to Arcadia Wilderness Park and back. 42 miles.

The fun after I got home was to replace the overhead light in our dining room. The complication was that since we got the new hutch, we had to move the table over, and the light was no longer centered over the table. So I had to go up in the attic and uncover the box for the chandelier and then branch some wire off of it and put a new box a little ways over. Then I installed the new light below the new box. The new light is a lot brighter than the old one, and it uses only about 1/4 the electricity. So that makes up for its lack of funky-vintage charm. Next weekend I will have to go back in the attic and move the original box so that I can patch the hole in the ceiling.


Dinosaurs at the L.A. Zoo

Filed under: — stan @ 8:32 pm

Today we went to the Los Angeles Zoo to see the dinosaurs confined there. The exhibit of animatronic dinosaurs was pretty good. One odd thing, though. They specifically said we were not supposed to take flash pictures in the exhibit, as if the flash might startle the animatronic dinosaurs and make them stampede or something. Still, it was fun. Lucinda liked the dinosaurs.

After that, we went and walked around more of the zoo. They had some more dinosaur exhibits, as well as the regular animals. A lot of the zoo is torn up right now because they are rebuilding the Gorilla and Elephant exhibits. The sign on the Gorillas said that they are away at other zoos right now, and some of them will be coming back when the new enclosure is ready. I suppose the others are being outsourced to India or something.

Overall, it was a fun time. There are some more pictures in Lucinda’s photo album.


Quote of the day

Filed under: — stan @ 7:05 pm

I think this makes it for Quote of the Day regarding the last election:

“Quite frankly, I’m sick of having a spoon of shit forced down my throat each Fall.”

Sadly, we here are familiar with that feeling. I’ve been voting since 1978. It was 1986 when I finally saw someone I voted for win. And in 7 tries, I’ve only gotten my choice for President twice. There is also a school of thought that this shows that democracy is actually working. Everyone comes away a little bit unhappy when things are working correctly.


Birthday Bike Ride

Filed under: — stan @ 12:26 pm

Since it’s my birthday, I took the day off work. I went for a bike ride, since it’s yet another insufferably nice day here in L.A.

I rode up through La Cañada and then down into Glendale. That’s where I saw the Harp Center. Who knew there was such a place? Then I came back across Eagle Rock, pausing only briefly for a side trip up Nolden St. This is a little residential street that goes up a terrifyingly steep hill. They say it’s usually a bad sign when you’re riding up a hill and the sidewalk turns into a staircase. But I like riding up ridiculous hills, so it was fun. In fact, coming back down was much scarier than going up. The route home went near the Rose Bowl, where I saw preparations for the Rose Parade already starting. 25 miles.

Election Day

Filed under: — stan @ 9:44 am

Lucinda came along today to vote. It was a very relaxed experience. Not too many people were there when we went. Our polling place is at Eaton Canyon Regional Park, so after voting we looked at the nature displays in the visitor center and then took a walk on the “Fire Ecology” nature trail.


Halloween Night

Filed under: — stan @ 11:29 pm

I’ve made a hobby of setting up my telescope out in the driveway on Halloween Night. It seems fitting to do some astronomy here, since we live at the base of Mt Wilson in California, where a lot of astronomy history was made. I hand out candy and let the kids and their parents look through the telescope. I started doing this back in 1998 when Jupiter was high in the sky, and it’s turned out to be popular enough that I’ve done it every year I can since then. The last two years were cloudy, but this time the sky was clear. There aren’t any good planets up now, so I ended up showing the kids two different star clusters, NGC 457 in Cassiopeia, and the famous Double Cluster, NGC 869 and NGC 884 in Perseus. While these don’t have the same ‘Ohhhh’ factor as Saturn did in 2001, they still were interesting, and the kids seemed to like it. So overall, it was a good evening.

Today’s ride

Filed under: — stan @ 1:34 pm

Today we did the Rio Hondo/San Gabriel River bike path loop. It turned out to be a perfect day, warm and sunny, but with snow on the mountains above us.

This route is a mostly-flat ride. South through Temple City to the Rio Hondo bike path. Then south some more to Whittier Narrows. Then we cut across to the San Gabriel River and went back north to Santa Fe Dam. Then home through Duarte and Monrovia with a stop at Beantown in Sierra Madre. 42 miles.


Halloween Carnival

Filed under: — stan @ 10:35 pm

We took Lucinda to the Halloween Carnival at her school this evening. They had little games and trick-or-treating for the kids. There were several hundred kids and their parents there. It was chaos. But Lucinda had enjoyed it.

Nice day for a bike ride

Filed under: — stan @ 12:21 pm

I did a short ride today. Just out to Duarte and back. A little bit of hills in Sierra Madre and Monrovia. It was a pleasant time. 25 miles.


Our %x10 Anniversary

Filed under: — stan @ 10:47 pm

Today is our 16th anniversary, or our 10th if you’re a geek. So we went out for a nice dinner at Traxx. This is the nice art deco restaurant in Union Station in downtown Los Angeles. We rode the Metro Gold Line to get there, which made it a bit more of an adventure, as well as avoiding the legendary Friday evening Los Angeles traffic. As always, it was very nice. The service was good, and the presentation was flawless. And Lucinda is already an old hand at this sort of thing. She knows how to behave in restaurants, and she enjoyed the dinner and especially enjoyed the dessert. So overall, it was a nice outing.

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