Archive for February, 2007

The Little Freeway That Couldn’t

The Times reports that OCTA has finally fined the road builders on the 22 widening project for their tardiness. The fine really should have come months ago. Proof that the builders aren’t the only ones taking their sweet time. Still, it’s a step in the right direction. Praise be to Bacchus for finally making someone accountable.

That being said, I’d rather them just hurry up and finish the job rather than all this fining and whining about who didn’t get what done at what time. Here’s a unique suggestion: How about all involved (or devolved) parties just stop arguing and start working! Seriously, I drive the 22 on occasion and no matter what time of day it is, there appears to be absolutely nothing going on.

Ansel Adams at the Bowers

Photograpy has always been one of my favorite art forms, and one of the best photographers in modern times is being exhibited at the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana. “Ansel Adams: Classic Images” opened this weekend and remains on display through May 13. The exhibition features 75 images that display his mastery. Definitely worth checking out.

Learning Life by Living on Four-Wheels

The Times ran a great story about a student at Cal State Fullerton who spent 19 months, during his college years, living in the bed of his white Toyota Pick-up truck.

To Andy Bussel his truck was his home.


Between attending Film Classes, working at the Apple Store as a Mac Genius, and working on homework in the Titan Student Union, Andy never knew where he would park next to get a few hours sleep. Not being able to afford rent (this is “The OC” and rent is extremely high in some areas of the County), Andy slept and studied in the back of his truck, watching movies off of his laptop (I’m guessing it’s a mac considering his employment) and keeping one eye out for the police.

During a stay in Costa Mesa a police officer issued Andy a ticket for 177 dollars. Shrugging it off, Andy stated that the ticket wasn’t bad considering he didn’t pay rent for months.

You can read about Andy’s experiences in his Truck and the sudden rise in media fame on his aptly named blog:

It’s Freeeeeeee! Part Something or Other….

Allright, it’s about 8:30am, so you still have an hour and a half to get yourself to the nearest IHOP, who is giving away free pancakes today only until 10am. It’s for a good cause, too. Go here to find out more.

So, if you’re hungry, get dressed and go! What could be nicer than some nice hot pancakes on a cold morning? Hmmm, there’s one on Tustin…

**UPDATE** Thanks to Mike, who kindly refrained from reminding me that I should look at my own links, TOMORROW is the day for free pancakes, from 7am to 10pm.

The Blue Butter Dish From Orange

The Missus and me spent the better half of a day over at the Orange Circle looking for the world’s finest retro-inspired antique-ish device that would hold our butter with style, simplicity and irony. It was a long journey, but a cheap one; in fact the whole trip only cost us $7.00.

So, um, yeah, behold my Butter Dish! Isn’t it marvelous? Isn’t it just a lovely, smooth, atomic blue, melmacian thing of beauty? Oh sure, to you it’s just a butter dish, but to me it’s a piece of Goddamn art! Not only is it pretty to look at but it also, you know, holds our butter. You should see it in person – it’s stunning.

I love the Orange Circle and all of it’s smartly appointed antique stores. It is a whole shopping district dedicated to making people like me (that is to say, people who think things like butter dishes and toasters are art) feel normal and well adjusted.

I also have a desk-lamp that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy. I can’t be alone in this. What types of everyday things do you sit and gaze at when no one is looking?

Meet your Congressman!

When I lived in Santa Cruz, our local Congressional rep (Sam Farr) would meet with the public every few months at a local eatery, just to talk politics and connect with his constituents. While anyone can request a meeting with their congressman, this format was informal, fun, and made you feel like they cared about what you have to say.

After moving home to Orange County, I wasn’t sure I’d find that kind of interaction with my representatives – it just seemed like a more Democrat thing to do, ya know? But John Campbell’s proved me wrong, and is having a “Coffee With The Congressman” event tomorrow, February 19th at the Peet’s Coffee at 12932 Newport in Tustin at 9am.

Roughly, the 48th is the north part of south county and the south part of central county – there’s a map here. Come ask your congressman about the war, taxes, Britney’s freakout, or whatever’s on your mind. Seeya there!.


I can report from firsthand knowldege that the ER at Kaiser is one hopping place!

I found myself there due to almost a week of the stomach flu and the severe dehydration that made them hook an IV into me with a saline drip, stat!

Although I was way down on the priority list with the guy whose finger being cut and the subsequent horrible infection resulting in them having to possibly amputate the finger to the newborn with a severe lung infection that required an oxygen mask and a quick check in to the NICU being just a tad more urgent. And these were just the people in the next two rooms! Poor things.

Being there from 8:30am to 3:30pm wasn’t so bad, though. They kindly threw in some anti-nausea drugs which finally gave me some relief after having eaten a total of approximately 3.5 crackers over the course of 4 days.

So, all I can say is- get thee some antibacterial wipes/lotion and use them! This is one nasty, nasty bug.

Heroin Bust in the O.C.

121 pounds of Mexican brown heroin was seized Wednesday from a home in Anaheim.

What I found interesting was how this story is reported in the press. You’d think a simple drug bust would be a straight forward reporting exercise — and you’d be wrong. For example KFI AM 640, home to the John and Ken show known for their ongoing rant against the invasion of the U.S. by illegal aliens, chose this headline: “Mexican Heroin Found in Orange County — The stuff had just been brought over the border.” Mexican heroin seized in Anaheim does imply that it crossed the border at some point, right?

In the O.C. Register, the four of the men arrested at the home were described as “Mexican males without legal status” in an attempt to find a term that fits neatly between “undocumented worker” and “illegal alien.” Somehow, though, I suspect that with 121 pounds of heroin involved, even the National Association of Hispanic Journalists might not object to the term “illegal” being used in conjunction with these four suspects.

And of course there seems to be a bit of regional rivalry going on: the O.C. Register reports the seizure “is believed to be one of the largest heroin seizures ever made in California” — but the L.A. Times was quick to point out that it was not the biggest in California history. That distinction belongs to Long Beach (in L.A. County) with 140 pounds seized in 1990. Apart from using the headline to lobby for more law enforcement funds (or to justify the funds they already have), I’m not sure why any county would want the distinction.

Toxic Surf?!

This afternoon a friend forwarded the following KNBC headline to me: “Dozens of dead and dying shorebirds birds have turned up around the mouth of the Santa Ana River over the past week.” Great. Toxic surf. No one told me! We had surfed Bolsa Chica Saturday morning. I did spot one dead gull near lifeguard station 18. Someone had marked the carcass with a small cross constructed from bits of litter. I didn’t think much of it at the time but I wonder now if it was meant as a warning.

Sunday I spent a short time at Huntington Beach State Park near the mouth of the Santa Ana river a few miles south of Bolsa Chica. It was mid-afternoon and a stiff onshore breeze had all but blown out the surf. Still, it was a beautiful day and I was struck by how few people were around. There were a trickle of walkers, runners, and skaters on the beach path, but, apart from three surfers there was no one actually in the water and very few people actually on the beach. Maybe they knew something I didn’t.

What are your favorite OC Blogs?

Thinking on other blogs focusing on Orange County today, I realized there are far, far more than I knew about. Some I read/believe others often read: – The Liberal OC – Orange Juice – OC Blog – all the blogs over at SqueezeOC (semi-shameless plug) – all the blogs at (another semi-shameless plug)

Are there others you read that I didn’t list? Any new up and coming blogs I should be made aware of? What’s good out there?

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