Archive for January, 2007

Fashion Island Fun

My husband and I actually got the chance to (gasp!) go out and see a movie and have dinner while our son spent a boy’s day out with Grandpa. At first, we dithered like we always do. What to do? Where to go? How not to waste the precious eight hours of child-free time?

Since The Departed is no longer playing anywhere, we decided to see “The Queen” at Fashion Island. That Edwards must be one of the last in Orange County that hasn’t converted over to stadium seating. But, I was lucky to get to sit behind a fairly short person in what was a fairly crowded theater, so it was all good. I recommend “The Queen.” Even though there is absolutely no action and it is of course, dialogue-heavy, I never once thought that the pacing was too slow. Helen Mirren, as always, is a sight to behold portraying the stiff-upper lip leader of the English monarchy.

Then, on to some interesting political discussion and some shopping. It was the last sale day for Bath and Body Works, so I was very excited to stock up. It was very windy and very cold, thus making Fashion Island atypically deserted for a weekend.

For dinner, we decided to dine at The Daily Grill. People, run, don’t walk to get over there. The service is excellent, and the food divine. Our server, Joaquin, was a gem of a waiter who offered wonderful suggestions to make our meal perfect. The prices are a bit on the high side, but the meal I had there was better than the one I had at Club 33 in Disneyland, for half the price.

More on that next time…

Anaheim’s Signature Scent

I have the special privilege of working pretty close to a copiously stocked horse ranch. On certain days when the wind is just right, it sort of smells like I work in a zoo. If it’s really warm, it’s like being down wind of a compost heap on fire. Mmmm Mmm good!

Also, as an exceptional treat, I work in fairly close proximity to a jam/jelly/juice/candy factory — it’s ConAgra masquerading as Knott’s I believe. Some days, when the Santa Anas pick up the scent, you can smell it at my desk. It smells like orange juice concentrate. Not actual oranges which smell tasty, but the juice-concentrate. It’s all around you, inescapable, like Ryan Seacrest or smog or the plague.

On extra extra special days (like today), you can smell both of these overwhelming odors at the same time. It’s an experience I liken to working at the state fair or a circus. Cotton candy and horse manure all rolled into one. Yummy, with a spoon.

So, what does Orange County smell like to you?

The OC Squeezed by FOX, Gustavo not Missing it

Leave it to the resident “Ask A Mexican” to deliver his unique take on the cancellation of “The OC.” Gustavo nails it head on by mentioning that “The OC” was not a true representation of Orange County. I fully agree that the dysfunctional family in “Arrested Development” portrayed this County in a more realistic light. But leave it to FOX to also cancel AD.

Gustavo’s thoughts in the LA/OC Times can be found here.

Your “Right to Remain Silent!”

Chapman Law Review sent this along to me and I’m passing it along to our readers. Since my degree is in Criminal Justice, this looks like a very interesting symposium.
– Mike R.

Your “Right to Remain Silent!”
January 26, Symposium at Orange County’s Chapman
School of Law to address key civil liberty issues.


Miranda & the War on Terror and Corporate Crime. Keynote lunch speech by
former U.S. Attorney General Edwin Meese. FREE to the general public.
Attorneys receive 6 CLE credits for just $125. Government and non-profits
only $100! Lunch event $45.


Friday, January 26, 9:00am-5:30pm, followed by reception.


9:00-10:30 am – Panel 1: Miranda and the War on Terror: interrogation
tactics employed; the state of civil liberties in warfare, and the
multifarious meaning of “warfare.”
Stephen F. Rohde; Ronald J. Rychlak; Joan L. Larsen; M. Katherine B. Darmer
Moderator: Marisa S. Cianciarulo

10:45-12:15 pm – Panel 2: Miranda, The Media, and Public Access to
Information: mass media’s impact on our understanding of civil liberties;
media scrutiny impact on high profile investigations, such the recent
Scooter Libby indictment.
Jim Fleissner; Sam Kamin; Russell Covey; Jeremy M. Miller
Moderator: Sherri Burr

12:30-1:45 pm – Lunch, with Keynote Address by Edwin Meese III, Former
U.S. Attorney General “A Republic, If You Can Keep It”: whether the
constitution is a foundation or a trampoline, and whether the Supreme
Court is taking over war-making powers.

2:00-3:45 pm – Panel 3: Miranda in Modern Practice: Does it Protect the
Innocent or the Guilty?: Miranda is designed to prevent coerced
confessions. After 40 years, does it actually achieve this purpose?
Mark A. Godsey; Steven B. Duke; Janine Y. Kim; Paul Shechtman; Lawrence
Moderator: Donald J. Kochan

4:00-5:30 pm – Panel 4 – Miranda and Corporate Crime: What is Miranda’s role
following corporate scandals such as Enron? Do new laws governing
“corporate insiders” violate civil liberties?
Roman E. Darmer; Keith P. Bishop; J. Kelly Strader; Steve Goorvitch;
Thomas E. Holliday
Moderator: Henry N. Butler

TO REGISTER: Please contact Chapman Law Review by January 22.
714-628-2582, or

200 Mile Man Still a Winner in My Book

The Register reports that Jesse Zweig, the 18 year old from Lake Forest who was determined to run an ultramarathon of 200 miles to raise money for CHOC, was forced to stop at the 124 mile mark. In the wee hours of Saturday morning, cold weather and blisters on his feet caused the decision to be made that it would be in his best interest to not continue.

Jesse did his best and that is all anyone can ask of themselves. He made a wonderful commitment to help the patients at CHOC, and not many people can say they have run over a hundred miles in a single outing. And, raising over seven grand for CHOC isn’t so shabby, either. Bravo to him!

Practically Perfect Disneyland

My friends, there is nothing better than being able to go on a ride at Disneyland twice. Without even having to get off. That’s what happened Tuesday when we were there, and Pirates of the Caribbean was somehow deserted. We love, love going to Disneyland when no one is there, and cold weekday in mid-January is just the ticket. Luckily for us, my husband works a non-traditional schedule and my son is not yet in school, so it is easy to do.

The only thing that marred our day (technically 12 rides in about three hours) was the decision to eat at the Cafe Orleans. Now, this used to be a “cafeteria” type of restaurant until they remodeled it and turned it into one with table service. They should have stuck with the original. We were given the choice of eating inside or outside, and even though it was bitter cold, one look at the tables crowded together and the rather ugly interior decorating, we chose outside. Would it kill Disney to invest in some heaters for their outdoor dining?

Then, I paid fourteen dollars for a salad of romaine hearts and chicken where I had to cut everything. So, they made a pretty nice profit off of that, as they had virtually no labor involved in the salad, it was all me. And, as a parent, I have to wonder why at the Dixie Bell my child can get a cheaper meal AND a magic straw, but at this place, the straw was a regular one. Is the little menu-that-turns-into-a hat thingy really supposed to be better?

I am confused as to what exactly the incentive is to eat at this restaurant, where the prices are typical Disney expensive but you have the added expense for a tip, for service which on this day, sucked. I actually kind of dig the self-service kiosks they have at some of the restaraunts, the only annoying thing is when people can’t figure them out.

And, I just have to say that I wish they had the Jedi Training Academy when I was growing up. Getting a padawan robe, a plastic light saber, and actually fighting Darth Vader? Awesome.

Another Reason I Like Santa Ana

They have banned Wal-Mart Supercenters. Woo hoo! Sweet Hephaestus what a good idea! Let’s hope the rest of Orange County follows suit.

Of course there is no telling what Garden Grove may do. This recent Times headline announced “Garden Grove seems ready to embrace Wal-Mart“. I just threw up in my mouth a little when I typed that. Apparently the City’s obnoxious red-light cameras have not generated enough currency to keep the struggling burg afloat and they think Wal-Mart is the answer. Only a desperate urban planner would ever believe Wal-Mart Supercenter is the solution.

I have strong opinions about Wal-Mart and have seen the harm the company does to communities of all sizes. If you haven’t had the occasion to observe the horror up close and personal, then check out WALMART The High Cost of Low Price. Yeah. Nice.

Walk of the Stars Goes Plural

On January 11th 2007, Carl and Margaret Karcher received the second star on the Anaheim/Orange County Walk of Stars — the first star went to Walt Disney of course. In case you didn’t know (I had no idea), Carl’s Jr. got it’s start right here in OC.

As it turns out, Carl’s Jr. is in pretty good company in this county. I missed out on the whole “Gift to the World” promotion that Metroblogging did a month or so ago. If I hadn’t missed it, I would have made sure to add the boysenberry, No Doubt, the Crystal Cathedral, Richard Nixon, Surf City and Carl’s Jr. to the roster of gifts Orange County has bestowed upon the populace.

For more information on Carl and Margaret Karcher you can visit the CKE web site.

200 Mile Man

Today at 2:30 pm, Jesse Zweig will run for 200 miles in approximately two straight days in order to raise money for CHOC. I don’t have to tell you about what a great organization CHOC is, do I? He will start out at his alma mater of El Toro High and run all over Orange County, eventually winding up at CHOC sometime on Saturday.

I certainly walk on the treadmill, but the thought of running 200 miles gives me the hives. This young man sounds like an inspiration, and I wish him luck in his journey. He is hoping to raise $20,000 for CHOC, but from what I understand, he hasn’t reached that goal yet. To read a statement from Jesse and learn how you can sponsor him, go here.

NAMM is coming to town

NAMM, one of the largest music conventions in North America is setting up shop at the Anaheim Convention Center:

Things were already hopping with music at the Anaheim Hilton with some of the bands performing preshow gigs in the Hotel meeting rooms for NAMM convention guests.

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