Sunday, April 7, 2013

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: April 8th

Just a few quickies today to compliment the liveblog of the Kings/Ducks game from last night (see the previous post).

Ever try to take a whiz, and the pee splits into two parts?  Like a fork in the road or something?   Very awkward feeling.  And then you try desperately to either stop the stream or pull the whiz together so it doesn't get all over your shoes... oiiii...

I tried to go see that Kings/Ducks game in person, but couldn't get any tickets under 40 bones.   People have really taken advantage of that "jack up the prices of games vs big teams" policy most pro sports teams do now.

What a strange new world we live in:  The Clippers are now the best basketball team in Los Angeles -- not the Lakers, not UCLA, not Loyola Marymount (old reference).  No!  It's the Clippers.

I'm trying to get in shape for this month's UCLA swim meet.  I had such good swims on Friday and Saturday that I was tempted to go to the Pierce College swim meet yesterday, on a whim, and do a drop in entry.    It almost happened, and then I stayed up way too late on Saturday night playing SongPop and I slept til 10am the next morning.  First, I woke up around 6, but then went back to bed after a few minutes.

I feel like I'm getting into the groove again, but this week's swims are critical.  I need to do three swims this week, minimum.   I've done it for two weeks now, but a third week of 3 swims is going to be enormous.  I'll do everything I can to make it happen.  The UCLA swim meet is on 4/21... and if there's anything I think I can do, it's rise to the occasion in a big event.  Not that I've had many "events" to speak of, but any chance I get I like to put in a great effort!

I really hope people aren't rubbed the wrong way with that liveblog of the Kings game.  The good thing here is I placed it in a separate post, so if people are annoyed by it, it can just be ignored.  To be fair, a lot of bloggers do live blog of particular events.  I thought of liveblogging the ACM awards, but the Kings game cut into the open of the show on the West Coast so I elected to stay with sports.

Saturday morning was weird!  I was up way too late on Thursday night and that messed up my Friday, so I was extremely tired by 9pm Friday night.  So I just laid out on bed and listened to the Lakers game, expecting to get back up after a few minutes.  That never works.  So I get up and it's 9pm, and I'm way out of it, so I just called it a night and went to bed.

The next morning, I get up at 5am...  It is SO EARLY in the morning nothing was going on, but since I was in bed so early, coupled with the hour long nap that preceded it, I decided to scrub the tub in the bathroom.  Productive morning!    I was scrubbing the tub and listening to John Kincade on CBS Sports Radio.  Kincade is a clown but he was filling in for Malusis.  I kid you not, Malusis has his own CBS Sports Radio national show on Saturdays.

All right, the point is, I scrubbed the bathtub pretty cleanly, and got in a little work on the shower doors to boot.  Very noicely cleaned, so back to bed, only to realize it was about 6:30 am by then, so I packed my swim bag and went to the 7:15 Saturday swim.

I hardly ever do these Saturday swims but I was up so early I went for it.  What a great swim!   Great set, great execution, and all of us felt pretty good afterward.   I was out of there, and it was still only 9am.  No local sports on and just some baseball at 10am, so I drove down Sunset Blvd to take advantage of the light traffic. 

First I drove *East* to get over to Hollywood, but as I was getting to the Sunset Strip, I looked up Bagel Shops on my smartphone, and it pointed me to spot called "Sam's on Sunset."  The reviews claimed it was "almost as good NY bagels."  So I stopped by.  Nice little spot... good service, and indeed, pretty darn good bagels.  It literally is as close to the NY bagel as I've seen.   No one in Southern California has replicated the crispy crust of a true NY bagel, but the inside of the bagel hit all its spots.  I got the lox spread ( that cost me: 7 bones for a bagel, spread, and cofee -- would have been much less without the lox).  Then I got a seat by the window which looked out on the strip.  Gosh, the strip was looking gorgeous.   Once I finished the bagel, I thanked the staff, went out and took a photo:

How gorgeous was that??   Now, check out the Arco station on the corner.   I recall a memorable Album Cover from the Mid 70s for a recording by the "Sweet."  Remember those guys?   "Love is Like Oxygen," "Ballroom Blitz," and a bunch of others.  Great group.  They took a photo of themselves walking down the Sunset Strip during the day and used it for their album:

That has *got* to be the same ARCO sign from the same location above.  The difference is, they took picture from the other direction, facing East.  I took a photo of the ARCO sign facing West.

Pretty neat Rock n' Roll highlight.  It's a shame I haven't taken advantage of my proximity to this musical hotbed.  The trick is that Sunset Strip gets really dangerous at night.

So with that in mind, I thought of going further East to Hollywood proper to see a movie at the El Capitan, but all they were showing was that "Oz" movie, so I punted on it.  I instead went the other way down Sunset Blvd, West this time, and headed home.

At least, that was the idea, until I had the hare brained idea of riding Sunset Blvd out until I got to Santa Monica, just for fun.   Being the bonehead that I am, I had no idea that Sunset Blvd does NOT touch Santa Monica at all!  Instead it just curls northward into the mountains and gets you careening out into Pacific Palisades!!  --and the whole time I was holding a pitcher's worth of liquid in the bladder.  I really had to pee!  Then on the radio you had little ditties from Tom Petty, The Cars, and so on, and I was dying... any time I had to lift my foot from the gas pedal to the brake I could feel the urge.  Soon I was riding along the road waiting for that next gas station.

I had to wait miles and miles and miles down the road.  *Finally* as I got within 3 miles of the PCH, I found two gas stations along the road, so I made the stop.  There are three parking spaces in front of one gas pump, but the distance between them is tight.  Any car that stops there would block the three parked cars to its side.  I went over to the shop to get the key but I wondered if I had to ask first.  So one dude's in line, Dodger cap on and sweats.  For all I know it's a really famous actor person, with it being Pacific Palisades and all, but I'm a clown with identifying famous people.  I'm worthless at it.  Al Michaels could stop by and ask me for directions and I would just think he's another nice guy.

So the guy asks for some oil and I wait it out.  Meanwhile some old lady goes over and just takes the key into the restroom.   I'm looking over and thinking "nooooooooooooooooo!!!"

The bladder's about to burst, and now I'm stuck killing time in a Mobil convenience shop.  What do I even do in that spot?  So I went and looked at all the latest Snickers bars.  Fortunately, the lady was pretty quick and left the restroom.  She was awfully nice too, and handed the key over to me.   Then it was my turn.

Suddenly, it was like the hover dam just sprung a leak.   First a little, then a gush, then a monsoon into the bowl.  I've had worse "outbursts" shall we say, but this was a big one for the year.  Relieved, I washed my hands and put the key back where it was.

I was ready to get back into my car and roll but no!  Some jackass decided to take the pump right in front of all the parked cars.  I had no room to move whatsoever, but seeing as I had the luxury of time, I just left and crossed the street.  I found a nice looking woman with her kids and sunglasses.  Probably some amazing famous lady and I don't even know it.   I walked over and just kept walking, looking at all the quaint little shops around the street.   Yes, quaint shops like "Bank of America," "Subway," and "Starbucks Coffee."   Haha, anyway, I was getting impatient, so I crossed back to the gas station and that joker was STILL THERE.  How long does it take to fill up a fuel tank?  For goodness sake there's only so much you can do.  So this time I walked DOWN the street, passed by a few persons, and just kept going until said dude and his car finally pulled out and drove down the street.

That was an experience.  Pacific Palisades is beautiful, no doubt, and it's a fun place to pee.   Perhaps one day you'll rub shoulders with a famous name as you look to find the water closet. 

The rest of the day was good too.  Final Four game with my buddy Coach at the Encino Chilis.  I *love* their baby back ribs.   Then back home around 8:45 pm.   Then I get a text from my sister and it turns out the entire extended family was over in Hollywood for a surprise Birthday Dinner for my cousin.  I was stuffed and it was already 9pm by then, but I toughed it out and promised to make it.

I knew that everyone was going to leave within the next hour so I had to truck it.  Got to my car at 9:30.  So, of course!  I get every conceivable red light between Wilshire Blvd and Wilton Place!  First along Santa Monica Blvd, which is to be expected, but then, over on Melrose too, which was a disgrace.

When you travel down Melrose Avenue, it only *looks* like a two lane throughway (in either direction).  That's a lie:  it's basically one lane where the other lane is what I call the "Valet Lane" at night.  Buses stop there.   Cars pull out a foot to disrupt traffic.  Jokers from out of town straddle the lane to find a parking spot.  Taxi cabs stop and go along there.  Everyone's either dropping someone off or parking along that lane.   Whereas the passing lane is always towards the center, the only real through traffic IS the "passing lane" on a night time Melrose Avenue drive.  You have to think backwards.  Drive the left hand lane and pass on the right.  I counted upwards of 10 total red lights in my commute, which took about 30 minutes for a paltry 9 miles.

With all that said, I still got to my Cousin's house right on time to say hello to everyone, and I mean everyone in the family.  I was amazed.  I couldn't believe everyone came!   Then, right when I got in the door, people were getting ready to leave.  HAHA!   I anticipated it the whole time, but I was still really happy to see everyone, even for just a few minutes.

So, after that 25 minute window, I headed back home again and returned to my apartment at 11 or so.   It was a very busy Saturday so I just plugged in some SongPop, then sampled a little Wang Chung and passed out on the couch.  Came to at 1am, turned off the computer, and went to bed.

...that's what stopped me from having a shot at the swim meet methinks.   I rather enjoyed my weekend though, how was yours?

'Til tomorrow!  As for the live blog below, I wouldn't recommend reading it until later in the afternoon, it's very long anyway.  See you all later on...

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