Sunday, April 14, 2013

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: April 15th

Congratulations to Adam Scott for winning the Masters Tournament.  He is the first Australian to win the event in tournament history.


I'm still mourning over Kobe's torn Achilles Tendon.   I was so saddened and upset by it that I drove down to Orange County, an hour away.  I spent most of Saturday in Newport Beach.

When I was there, I went to a place called "Inspiration Point" which had some breathtaking views.  It's just a little ledge that looked out onto the ocean and the coastline.  It was right against a street in a residential coastline neighborhood.  It was such a wonderful place.  It was cloudy the whole day but nonetheless, a great scene.

Before hitting all of this up, I stopped at Paul's Coffee Shop in Fountain Valley.  Old place, been around a while.

I learned of it on a Food Network Show and they were really plugging this Chicken Fried Steak, so I tried it out.  Here's what they *don't* tell you:  the damn thing is HUGE!!!!!!!!

The picture doesn't give it proper context.   The steak is as big as a MacBook Pro.   It took me quite a while to finish it.    Really good.  I didn't even need lunch.  The kicker is the unsung heroes of the breakfast:  the eggs, tremendous, the toast, sourdough, pretty good, and best of all, the home fried potatoes, sliced like au gratin, lightly pan fried, tossed with peppers.   Those things really surprised me.   The whole breakfast was an A+ but you gotta be hungry for it!

The next time I swing by there, and there will be a next time, I'm going to try one of their other breakfasts.  Everything there looks great.  I might consider just a regular steak and eggs, or waffles.   Tremendous breakfast place and it was packed when I got there.

Next destination, Fashion Island.  All right, not fashion island per se, but the Big Newport 6 Cinemaplex in Newport Beach.  It's a local landmark.   It's home to the single largest movie auditorium in all of Orange county, seating over 1100 patrons and hoisting an *80* foot screen.  That puts it on par with the Cinerama Dome in Hollywood, but without the curvature.   It's one of the most interesting Cineplexes in America and I'm happy to report it's doing great business.   It started as a single screen theater for four years.  Then they added the second theater to its right.  Then, years later, they added a third screen to its' left.   In 1996, they added a second building to the left of all three units with three identical stadium seating screens.  

 It's most fascinating how the evolution of the movie industry coincided with the slow evolution of this complex, yet, Edwards Cinemas (at the the time) was wise enough to evolve the complex gracefully.   A lot of places would have just divided the original theater into three pieces.  That would have been a disaster!

All right, enough movie theater talk let's get to the teeth of this.

I got through a great day in the O.C. and managed to cope with Kobe's Achilles injury.  I knew it... HE knew it, and we all know it:  Kobe's career is over. It is going to take a minimum of 9 games to recover from this injury, re-train, and get back on the NBA court.  By the time that happens, an already aging Kobe Bryant will already be at roughly 60% of his prime career performance.   We had already entered the phase of diminishing returns.  This is it.  I'm sad to see a career end, and for a guy who had done so much for the Lakers like Kobe, this one hurts.   Kobe's career started the same year I entered high school.   In a sense his career and my life grew together.   I knew it would end eventually but seeing it happen is still a shock.

I don't even know what the Lakers are going to do without Kobe.   Next year is going to be brutal.  You know what?  As things come to an end, they present a good opportunity to appreciate all the good times, and the great moments.  Kobe was big on both of those.   If this is how it ends, it was a great ride, Mamba.

For a while that weekend, nothing else mattered.  The Dodgers were a full out joke at the plate with runners in scoring position.  I still don't have much to say about the Quentin incident.  Quentin is a punk and he knows it.   That guy is *keen* for taking the suspension now so he doesn't have to bat in this week's series in LA.  So both the Lakers and Dodgers were down and out.  The Kings look pretty good!  but even so, sports didn't seem like a big deal to me that day.

That sentiment improved on Sunday after a pretty darn good Masters Final Round at Augusta.   Two incredible shots leading to an Adam Scott/Angel Cabrera playoff was all you could ask for.   What a finish for the Masters.

By the way, you can bet I'm tempted to move to Orange County.  No more riff raff... no parking tickets at every turn (not the citations, I mean the ones where you go to a lot and they make you get a ticket and have your parking time metered).  No miserable traffic.  It just seems like a simpler, and nicer, place to live, yet it's sandwiched between "home" in LA and San Diego.

When I was younger, I was more familiar with the "Old" part of Orange County:  Anaheim, Buena Park, Fullerton, and so on.  All of those places were nice enough but they were extremely dull, crowded, and really not that different from the San Fernando Valley... not impressive.   The last couple of years, I checked out the "New" part of Orange County:  Irvine, Costa Mesa, Mission Viejo, and Newport Beach.   Really really gorgeous..  easy to get around, quieter.  MUCH quieter.  Could this be my new destiny?

The reason why, I think, "New" Orange County is so unfettered is because the 101 and the 5 have no part of it.  Both of those freeways are connected with the rest of California.   Thus, people traveling up and down the state don't touch it without hitting another freeway first.  The majority of throughway traffic avoids those areas, hence, a better more downtempo community.  I have the good fortune of living next to the 405, which provides a REALLY easy entry into this alternate paradise.

I look forward to getting back there soon, but for the meanwhile, on to the other things.

Even Santa Barbara had its own riff raff.   Restaurants with no drive thru's, nutty ordinances, barely any place to park most of the time, stuff like that.

Times are changing... Coach said he might have a new opening for room mate at his 2bd apartment in Santa Monica.  This does not solve my desire to dettach from riff raff but he presents a great opportunity.   Become Coach's room mate, restore my access to Cable TV, and save over 400 bones a month in rent.  Tantalizing, no?  The drawback is that I will have to get rid of an enormous amount of things in my apartment.   In four years I've accumulated quite a lot.   To dump a lot of it will be a daunting task.  I have two months to decide... hopefully I figure out what to do.  I can *afford* to live where I am now, but I love the idea of saving 400 bucks every month.

It all depends on whether I want to continue a lifestyle within LA County Limits.   To be honest, I'm not sure if I do.   We'll see where the future takes us.

I gotta admit though, LA is still a pretty tremendous place.  So much to do, as you may remember from last week's blog-posting.  Tremendous culture, and excitement.   It's also quite terrific to live only ten miles from your favorite sporting venues.

I've got a feeling that flossing strengthens gums more than I know.  Ever notice when you chew and your gums start to hurt?   Not enough oxygen to the gums to give em strength.  It might be time to see the dentist.

Friends, I had the fortune of seeing "42: the Jackie Robinson Story" this weekend.  I won't present any spoilers, but what a movie!  You're going to love it.  Harrison Ford *nailed* Branch Rickey.   Really good. 

On that note, Happy Jackie Robinson day everyone!  

I really had a great weekend.   Looking forward to a good week to go with it.  That's all from here, catch you all soon!

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