Ladies and Gentlemen, meet the Prisoner of Zenda, an Anonymous Local who made the scene at 7th and Montana this morning dressed in prison stripes. "It's getting harder and harder around here to tell who's wearing a costume and who's not," I said, "What's she dressed as, anyway, a bundler from Pavilions?" Frankly, the costume didn't do much for her, but then again, Halloween comes but once year. Tomorrow, the whole outfit can just return to Zenda ...!
Sunday, October 30, 2011
Nothing says Southern California quite like a pair of Muckluks. An Anonymous Fashionista made the scene at 7th and Montana yesterday wearing a pair so extraordinary they'd make Nanook of the North green with envy. They were brown with fuzzy pink accents, just the ticket for an 80-degree day. Combine that with her flowing "Jackson Pollock" skirt, bright purple shirt and glowing red sweater and you have enough wattage to light the Eastern Seaboard. And trust me, that's a good thing. For some reason, we've lost our electricity up and down 7th Street this afternoon ...!
Saturday, October 29, 2011
High-powered Hollywood Attorney, Mel (pictured above), had a bone to pick with my blog this morning. "It looks like some lawyer must have told you to start blocking out people's faces," he complained. Mel is partly right ... someone did at one point complain about the photos on my blog, but it wasn't a lawyer. And no one told me to block out people's faces ... that was my own idea. Oh well, I guess you can't please everyone ... and that's why from now on I'll only selectively block people's faces out. Ladies and Gentlemen, meet Mel, the first installment in my new "7th and Montana: Uncensored" series of photos.
Ladies and Gentlemen, meet "Fannie," an annoying butt-inski who spent a good portion of United Flight #935 from London to Los Angeles sticking her rear end in my face. You see, her friend was sitting at the opposite side of the aisle from me and Fanny wanted to visit. Not just visit, mind you, but lean over and whisper in her ear for what seemed like an eternity. I first noticed Fannie when I woke up after a short nap ... only to find her bum floating over my tray table like a moon over Miami. I smiled and looked at the man sitting next to me. "Looks like the flight attendant brought us some buns, eh?" He laughed but was furious because -- how can I put this delicately -- her ass was so big it was infringing on his space, as well. "Not to worry," I said, "There's an app for that." I whipped out my Spycam and pointed it in Fannie's direction. "Go for it," my seatmate urged. "It's moments like these that make me wish I had a wide-angle lens," I replied. And with that, I snapped the picture. The only problem was, I had forgotten to turn off the Flash after Wednesday night's event. Fannie turned around. I smiled sheepishly and said, "What can I say? I'm an amateur photographer." My seatmate told her to butt out. In retrospect, I guess I owe Fannie a debt of gratitude. Afterall, if it weren't for her, I might get a little Behind in my blog ...!
Thursday, October 27, 2011
It did rain during the event I was attending in Madrid on Wednesday, but that did nothing to dampen the spirits of the crowd. I was there for Coldplay's launch celebration for their new album at the famous Bull Ring, where a crowd of more than 12,000 fans showed their support despite the fact that they were outside in the rain. I enjoyed the whole thing ... from a nice covered area. The whole concert is on Youtube: Coldplay Madrid. As for me, I've headed for some drier weather ... in London.
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
It's official, folks: The Rain in Spain Stays Mainly at My Hotel. I arrived in Madrid this morning in the midst of a light drizzle. Nothing too major, just a chilly, gray day in the capital of Spain. I haven't been to Madrid in years, so I took a nice walk from my hotel at Plaza de Santa Ana -- the fancy ME Madrid (where "It's all about you") -- to the nearest Starbucks. As usual, I had a grand old time confusing the locals by gesticulating wildly and ordering a grande half caff. Most baristas outside of the U.S. have never heard of a "half caff." A "half decaf Americano" is pretty much the same thing, but it's always more fun to let the locals figure that out for themselves. Anyhow, wish me luck tonight. I'm here for a big event at the Bull Ring. There's no bull involved, but it is an outdoor venue, so let's hope the Rain in Spain doesn't drive me Insane ...!
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Wonders never cease at Our Favorite Starbucks ... and maybe that's why no one raised an eyebrow when a woman made the scene on Sunday dressed like Wonder Woman. "Look behind you," said Dave, warning me to get my camera in position. I turned around and got a photo of the Brightly Dressed Colorful Loon as she stood behind me. "No," said Dave, "Not that one ... that one, by the door." I turned around again and there she was, Wonder Woman, complete with the bright blue miniskirt, white boots, red cape and boobs-a-poppin' breastplate. I know what some of you are thinking -- Halloween is around the corner -- but trust me, this was no Halloween costume. And that's what makes people watching at 7th and Montana so Wonder-ful ...!
Sunday, October 23, 2011
Shock waves rippled across 7th and Montana yesterday as the Guru -- known for his expertise on all subjects ranging from nuclear physics to the stock market -- was stumped. And I'm pleased to say, I'm the one who stumped him. "I just don't know, just don't know," he said to me, "What do we do with you?" "What do you mean?," I replied. "Well, I've been thinking that this Starbucks is sort of like a theater and everyone has a role ... but I just can't place you." I casually whipped out my Spycam, as if to read my e-mails, and let him go on. "I mean, you're obviously sociable," he continued, "But you're also so ... um ... corporate ..." He trailed off and it was then that I decided to help him out. "I guess there's no role for me around here," I said, "So why don't I just start a blog or something?"
Saturday, October 22, 2011
It was an All-Star Cast at 7th and Montana on Thursday as Actress Jennifer Garner made the scene. Unfortunately, I just missed her. "Jennifer Garner was here earlier," said Joyce, "And there's apparently a Survivor inside." I don't mean to imply that Jennifer Garner is deadly. The fact is, rumors were swirling that one of the stars of last year's Survivor was somewhere on the premises. The problem is, I've never watched survivor and had no idea who he was. I whipped out my Spycam and took a photo of the most likely candidate (pictured above) and it turns out I was right. Not only did he star in last year's survivor, but according to official news reports, he's also a professional Gravedigger. That's convenient, seeing as how the display case was chock full of Apple Fritters ... and that's more than enough to challenge any Survivor!
Tongues were clucking at 7th and Montana yesterday as an Anonymous Chicken Man made the scene in full feathered regalia. There I was, driving home after a long day at the office, when I noticed the chicken-in-question standing at the corner of 7th and Georgina, trying to remain incognito. I pulled over to the side of the road to chat with him. "Howdy," I said, "Is this your Halloween costume?" "No," he replied, taking off his mask, "I'm just waiting for a bus!" If you ask me, he looked like a college prankster ... from Purdue!
Monday, October 17, 2011
"Powerful." "Not to be Missed." "Extraordinary." That's what people are saying about filmmaker Carl Colby's latest work, a documentary entitled "The Man Nobody Knew," and I can tell you, if the buzz is any indication, this film is the hottest thing to hit town since the Jittery Nutcase threw a cup of Hot Chocolate at Architect Greg. The film tells the story of former CIA head William Colby through the lens of his own son. As The Los Angeles Times put it, the elder Colby "wore many guises: intrepid cold warrior, cool technocrat, international man of mystery and, to critics of the deadly covert operations he ran in Vietnam, war criminal." Can you imagine calling someone like that "Pop"?!? Thanks to Howard and Cathy, I had the pleasure of meeting Carl and his wife, Doe, yesterday, but I have to admit, I felt the least bit awkward pointing my Spycam in their direction. After all, hasn't Carl seen enough covert activity in his life? But the real picture to see here isn't just his photo (above, from the Internet), it's his movie. Check listings for a theater near you!
Sunday, October 16, 2011
Just a week after someone covered the neighborhood with "Spiritual Graffiti," an anonymous "prankster" spray painted red swastikas at 7th and Montana and the surrounding areas. Some say it was the work of rich kids with too much money and too little sense, but I can't help wondering if something else is going on. People are on edge. The economy is limping along, unemployment has reached record highs, and our elected officials can't seem to get out of their own way. Maybe the graffiti is just another sign of the growing unrest, but I hope whoever did this is caught red-handed.
Saturday, October 15, 2011
Ladies and Gentlemen, meet Yankee Dodo, a local oddball who went to town last night wearing a green velvet jacket, yellow pantaloons and a hat that made him look like a reject from the Peter Pan Institute of Fashion. At first I thought he was heading to some swank restaurant for a night on the town, but on second thought, based on his attire, he probably just stuck a feather in his cap and called it Macaroni ...!
Thursday, October 13, 2011
Neighbor Joyce has been crashing at 7th and Montana for years, but this morning she finally made it official: She wore her very own crash helmet. Actually, it was her grandson, Alex's, but she was nice enough to model it at my suggestion. And a good thing, too. Lately, it seems like the Crazy Drivers are out in full force. Just yesterday, a Dunce in a Hyundai (pictured below, escaping) didn't bother to slow down or look where she was going as she exited the Whole Foods parking lot. I was on foot and saw her coming right at me, so I took some evasive action. I stepped aside and politely swung my bag of groceries in her direction, 'gently brushing' the side of her car. That got her attention. She started to roll down her window, then stopped when she noticed my Spycam pointing at her. "Smile!," I cried, "It's for the Internet. You might want to Google Bonehead Driver when you get home ...!"
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
We've seen our share of backwards types at 7th and Montana -- loons who wear underpants on their head, folks who stand on their heads in the middle of 7th Street, you name it -- but never before have we seen someone who swivels his chair around and sits for hours on end facing the shrubbery. "Maybe he's communing with nature," said one witness. More likely, nature was calling ...
Kudos to Architect Greg, who was just interviewed by KGO-TV for a piece on his latest project, a $321 million, all-out renovation and retrofit of UC Berkeley's Memorial Stadium. Because the historic facility sits atop the Hayward earthquake fault, Greg and his team had to come up with a design that would allow the building to move up-to-six feet laterally and two feet down if "the big one" strikes. You can check out Greg's interview here: Memorial Stadium Interview.
Sunday, October 9, 2011
Jokes were flying this morning at 7th and Montana as renowned Jazz Performer Curtis Stigers made the scene and brought a few one-liners and puns with him, to boot. My favorite went something like this:
A Panda Bear walks into a bar and says to the Bartender, "I'll have a gin ...... and tonic." The Bartender replies, "Why the pause?" "I was born that way," said the Panda. Get it: Pause, Paws?!? OK, maybe that joke gave you pause. But Curtis' music is second-to-none. You can check it out here: http://curtisstigers.com/
Later, Architect Greg shared some Architect Humor. Yes, believe it or not, architects can be funny. My favorite of his jokes goes like this: "Two architects ran into a bar. You'd think after the first one ran into it, the second one would have known enough to duck!"
Saturday, October 8, 2011
If you want to know what the good word is at 7th and Montana today, just look at the sidewalk. An anonymous wordsmith made the scene last night spray-painting what some are calling "Spiritual Graffiti" up and down 7th Street between San Vicente and Montana. Police wasted no time this morning scouring the neighborhood for suspects. As for the graffiti, every block contains at least one message in bright blue paint ranging from "Save Yourself" to "Take Your Time ... Because it's Yours!" My personal favorite is "Love is Fine." Of course, Love's not the only thing that's fine: Graffiti, an act of vandalism, carries a fine of up to $5,000 ...!
Thursday, October 6, 2011
Great Horny Toads! There's a new loon in town and she has -- drum roll please -- horns. Sure, they're the 'strap on' variety, the kind you can find at any Wal-Mart before Halloween, but still ... they're horns. The loon-in-question made the scene at 7th and Montana earlier this week, dressed in a plaid jacket, black slacks and a set of red, plastic horns. I, for one, welcomed the change. "Just what we need around here," I said, "A horny bat!"
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
I spent all day yesterday at a new "think tank" in Silicon Valley. While I can't get into details about the meeting itself, it was one of those occasions where a lot of technical and creative people get together and exchange ideas. They think of everything at these think tanks: Phones that do your laundry; PCs that take out the trash; Robots that replace you. You name it, they plan for it. Except for parking. The Think Tank didn't have enough parking spaces and I had to drive around for a while before finding a spot on the street. To my surprise, it turned out to be right in front of the location known as the "Birthplace of Silicon Valley," a one-car garage where in 1938 Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard started H-P with only $538 in capital. That's Silicon Valley for you: Everyone is so busy starting businesses out of their garage, they forget you're also supposed to park there ...!
Monday, October 3, 2011
It was the Shock of the Century at 7th and Montana this morning as Neighbor Malissa made the scene with ... dare I say it ... a complaint. For years, whenever anyone has asked Malissa "How are you?," she has always smiled and said, "No Complaints!" Today, however, she walked through the door, lowered her sunglasses and said, "I guess I have a complaint!" She was sporting a shiner that made me wonder whether she took a grilling from George Foreman ... or maybe she just decided to return one of his grills. "What happened?," I asked. "It was a volleyball accident," she explained. Evidently, Malissa dove for the ball at the same time as one of her teammates and, if I understand correctly, her teammate inadvertently tried to lob her head over the net. Poor Malissa. They say that two heads are better than one, but when you have teammates like Malissa, maybe you'd better keep a third in the trunk just in case ...!
Sunday, October 2, 2011
Eardrums were bursting at 7th and Montana this morning as an Anonymous Phony spent nearly an hour barking into her cell phone. "Blah, blah, blah," she'd say in a nasal monotone that made my fingers want to reach out and touch a set of earplugs. It got worse when she periodically increased her volume to emphasize certain points. "Doesn't everyone know I'm in charge?," she shouted, "I'm organizing major events in Beverly Hills. I can't be bothered with interruptions ...!" She went on and on, at times juggling two calls at once. "Hang on, Hon, I have another call coming in!," she screeched. She spent three minutes on one line complaining about the person on the other. "I'm so busy," she said, "So very, very busy!" Indeed, she was busy alright. She was single-handedly giving AT&T its most profitable quarter ever. That's why I'm calling her Ms. AT&T: Always Talking and Talking ...!
Saturday, October 1, 2011
Eyes were popping at 7th and Montana this morning as a couple of movers and shakers made the scene, using a bike and a skateboard to move pieces of heavy furniture. "Yikes, get a load of that," said one witness, as a shelving unit on a skateboard whizzed by. Moments later, a credenza on wheels made the scene, guided by a goofball on a bike. The whole thing made me wonder, what would this pair use to move a piano ... a bicycle built for two?