Howdy folks, I am restarting this blog up again and placing a lot of my old writing up on it for this age of social media. Bear with me as I try out some themes and such. More to come!!
The streets were soggy with mulched-up confetti on Sunday, the aftermath of four days of Fiesta madness. Barring the rodeo and the Courthouse Sunken Garden final symphony concert, Old Spanish Days was pretty much over. But there was one more – unofficial – event: the increasingly popular Fiesta Cruiser Run, now in its 35th year.
Thousands of cyclists, young and old, gathered at the dolphin fountain at the base of Stearns Wharf, waiting for a chance to ride en masse up State Street with their final destination being Goleta Beach.
David Weiss’ goal as a scriptwriter has maintained itself over his years in the industry: “I like telling stories that a kid in junior high would enjoy. I like doing things that are good and helpful to mankind. And there’s something neat and sweet and old fashioned in doing films for families.” And in his work, from his debut “All Dogs Go to Heaven,” “The Rugrats Movie,” “Shrek 2,” and the upcoming “Smurfs” movie, he’s done just that. Behind the success, however, Mr. Weiss has also journeyed a great deal spiritually, a path he will outline in his presentation Friday at Chabad Jewish Center in Ventura, the city where he was born and raised.
Mr. Weiss’ own storyline pitch would be simple: A boy raised a Reform Jew in Southern California finds Christ and converts to Christianity. Yet, later on in life, after his initial success in Hollywood, he returns to Judaism, delving deeper than he ever did.
Some journos spend months landing an exclusive interview with a Hollywood star. We spent six weeks working to bring you this exclusive review of California Pizza Kitchen’s cocktails. Our request went from server to manager to general manager to corporate office to public relations to marketing to… well, who knows? Way up we went in the halls of corporate pizza power and back down again to get the OK. At last it was on. CPK, we’re coming for your cocktails, so unlock that liquor cabinet.
First of all, has it really been 19 years since CPK hung its shingle at the former corner of De la Guerra? General Manager Kevin Secky has been here nine of those years, making sure the gears are greased and the dough is spinning. The full bar has only been open for three years, where it served beer and wine only once. But now there’s a page full of mojitos and margaritas and another page of assorted specialty drinks. Secky put the human face on the machine and welcomed us to it.
Jon Stewart again does what the others in the “media” can’t do. At the end, I don’t think Stewart is really laughing. Fuck you too, billionaires. In fact, the use of footage coupled with intertitles afterwards showing the fate of those banks and insurance companies is straight out of a serious doc, not a comedy show.
I was trying to explain to a friend the other day how important British DJ John Peel was to several generations of music fans, and how gutting it was when he died in 2004 of a heart attack. I recently discovered that there’s a still-growing, very rough John Peel Wiki that is eventually going to, I assume, list all his shows with track lists and corresponding mp3s. That’s sounds exactly like something the Internet is good for. I know I have a few cassettes myself that I could transfer and upload. But nothing like the 500 Box that the wiki talks about.
I was trying to explain to said friend that it was Peel’s in between song banter that made the show. You knew that no matter how out there the music got, Peel would come back in with a friendly chat. I can’t think of any other DJ who maintained such a conversational, humane tone behind the mic. I went looking on YouTube and found this audio (with user graphics) that gives one a good idea of the style.
And this is also funny, a compilation of John Peel’s appearances on BBC pop music shows. You can tell he loathed most of this music.
Is that Claire Grogan at the end of the clip?