Monday, September 29, 2014

There Seem To Be Some Disagreements About Mole

I didn't want to do it, but how could I pass it up? I got another email alert from CARS about their Pop-Up Broadway event. I decided it really wasn't for me and moved the e-mail to the trash. Then on Sunday morning I reverted to old habit and started surfing the online event calendars. A new one to me is Enclave. I think it will become my favorite for these kinds of events. What should I see on the calendar but that back at the Plaza at Olvera Street there is the Feria de Los Moles. This is a cook-off competition between the moles of Puebla and Oaxaca. Who knew moles were animate? It was late afternoon before I could get out of the house, but you can bet I was gonna go. I hit them both, the Broadway event and the Mole Festival.

North end of the Pop-Up Broadway event. One of the old theaters downtown that has been converted into something else - a church.
Even theatrical churches have competition, like this Help Center that will give you prayers everyday.
But you can sign-in at the theater. Otherwise known as the...
Catedral de la Fe.
One of only two performances I managed to catch.
And who else should be shooting but Take My Picture - Gary Leonard.
Also enjoying the show was CARS President Aaron Paley.
Broadway is full of shops that can fit you out for an event. 

There are also plenty of places to eat. 
The other performance was of Brazilian drummers and dancers.

I wasn't sure I was going to eat at the competition. A stand like this was too much to resist.
A cabeza and a buche taco.
I don't know why all these motorcycles were in this lot.
Another art deco building like the Wiltern. 
This is the Eastern Building, built by the Polish immigrant Adolph Sieroty.
We are being watched everywhere.
Facade of the restored United Artists Theater/ACE hotel.
There was a lot of yarn bombing going on. Who knew?

Another old "once a theater."
The Orpheum is restored.
Olvera Street and Chinatown (just to the north) have an Italian heritage.
I took two shots of this group and she wasn't going to let me get away without contributing. 
And now the for the competition.
Some lighter fare first. 
I've never had Tejate
It is not for everyone, but it is for me.
The competitors...

In case someone didn't know what was going on.
Pico House, another local historic landmark.

Some of that Brazilian dancing.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Back to Japan

No, I didn't go back and have no plans to go at the moment. I'd be more than happy to go back, for sure, but funding has to be in place. What I did do was create a little fly-by of some of the cities, towns and villages I visited. This is in Google Earth. As hip a program as Google Earth is, it is also very frustrating. I won't go into the details. Suffice it to say that I (and many others, if you read the forums) think they could do better.

That means rather than embedding the tour here for you to watch, you will have to download the file and watch it in Google Earth. That of course means you have to have Google Earth. It is a free program and you can download it [here].

Below is the download button for the tour file. It is 20.1 MB. If it stops downloading before that, it will not work. Just try it again. Open it with Google Earth and enjoy. The "street views" in the tour don't always resolve. Just click once on the image, it will stop the tour and resolve the image. In the left-hand corner of the browser you will see a "Play" button, click that and move on.

Happy viewing.

As of 09/26/14, the sound is improved.

There I Went Again_Sunday September 14.

I really did figure I was done with festivals, but last Sunday came around and I remembered I had saved an email from [CARS] about their last LAVoices event of the season. It was hot, approaching 100ºF and that was reason enough to go. Besides, I needed to pick something up in [Olvera Street], across from the train station. 

L.A. Metro was seriously misbehaving that day. They had plenty of opportunity starting from a visit to their website, to the Sierra Madre Villa station parking lot, to the fare purchasing machines, to the entry gates, to let a rider know that the trains would not be servicing that station on that day and that you would need to take a bus shuttle. Instead, they waited until you got down to the boarding platform to give out that information. Need I say more? 

New boarding point - Allen Station. Here is a [brochure] of L.A. Metro's artwork and artists. 

[Map] of the excursion.

Allen station artwork by [Michael Amescua].

As I said in an earlier post, there are bells around the city. This one is at the Chinatown station.

Don't be fooled, there were plenty of people around.

Artwork at the Western Ave. station by [Richard Wyatt].

Head toward the light, Luke. Head toward the light. That is, if you want to be a Jedi knight.

The historic [Pellissier Building and Wiltern Theatre]. And a cop. [Marisela Norte] used to work in a restaurant that was in this building.

Wilshire Blvd. temple, the site of the [Voices of L.A.] festival and just beyond it is St. Basil's.

The [temple]. Pay attention to the dome.


The murals go all around the sanctuary. You [Trekkies] now know where the Vulcans visited. 

Here is the dome from the inside. It is a long way up.

[Saint Basil's] starts with drama on the outside...

...and continues inside.

There was a service going on, so my access was limited. 

This is the [Oasis Church] (formerly the Wilshire Christian Church), just down the street. Wilshire Blvd., in the [Miracle Mile], is loaded with [historic churches].

What was once the [Ambassador Hotel], now a high school.

This relief on the preserved fountain outside the school certainly gives the kids a realistic view of their future. 

Robert F. Kennedy was [shot] at the site of the school, back when it was still a hotel.

[Griffith Observatory] from afar.

This is another fine old building in the area. It is on 6th Street, on block north of Wilshire Blvd. The suite in the tower is the studio of [Raul Vega]. I once had an assignment from him. He needed to shoot some models on the roof of a downtown L.A. building. It was my job to find that building. Can you imagine what is was like for a black guy to walk up to the guard desk of major buildings in downtown and ask for access to the roof so I could take a few shots for a possible project in the future? I got onto more roofs than I expected, but certainly not onto as many as I tried to. 

Lunch time at the festival.

Fusion is the thing, so I ordered a [Kung Pao] chicken tamale.

Fusion being the thing, this Latin pop group has an [oud] player. He is a mean soloist.

You can't find better [golfing] anywhere in the world. L.A.'s the place!

Richard Wyatt again. The other side of the station. 

[Cynthia Carlson's] work at the Red Line terminus at Union Station.

This is that courtyard at Union shown in that earlier post in which some of my female ancestors standing.

I just needed to buy a [sizzle plate] in Olvera Street. Innocent me, I come out of Union Station and walk right into...

...another damned [festival].

Let us take a moment out for some seriousness. These festivals are not all fun and games. You need to behave at them. This building is in eyesight of Union Station. Whenever you see a building with real narrow windows like these, you should know that you are looking at a [prison]. Just sayin'.

But none of us are going to prison; we're just havin' fun.

You can't have [Mexican Independence Day] celebration without some [serious] [sousaphone] playing. 

Did I say it was nearly 100ºF this day? I needed an [aquas frescas]. Yes, I obscured her face. She is a child, she did not ask to be a star. 

These junior [mariachis] are not behind bars in that prison, they are behind the railing around the bandstand. This is the best shot I could get. 

Entering [Olvera Street], where you can find strange and wonderful things. 

Giant tree in the middle of the Plaza. The light is very hip this time of evening.
On the ride home, I saw from the window that there was yet another event going on in Chinatown. I stayed on the train; I'd had enough.