Tag Archives: wicked

Visited by Fran and Other Photo Stories

Fran made a Los Angeles visit at precisely the right time, as she was able to be out here while the pretty intense snowstorm / blizzard went on back east.  That storm didn’t end up dumping a ton of snow on NYC and New Jersey but it definitely hit Boston and New England pretty hard.  She was originally due to go home on Monday but because of the storm, she was delayed until today.  I’m glad that she had the chance to stay longer as I really thought she was going to anyway?   I’m posting the pics from the visit that I took below – the last few days we didn’t really take many pics, but what can you do?  Below these Fran pics, I am also posting some random photos that apparently I’ve neglected to post from things like going to the Pantages with mom to see Wicked and the Broad City Season 2 Premiere Party we hosted two weeks ago.  So lazy of me!

22 Jan 2015 – Fran’s Arrival / Dinner at the Dresden

Larry picked Fran up at the airport and took her to a few places before I got home from work, so I don’t have pics from their endeavors going to a bagel place and walking around Sunset Junction.  But I did get the photos going once I got home and then when we went to the Dresden for a fantastic dinner.  It’s still surprising how good the food is while also being very decently priced.

22-Jan-2015 17:22, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 5.0, 10.591mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 400
22-Jan-2015 20:00, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 800
22-Jan-2015 20:00, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 800
 

23 Jan 2015 – At the Grove

I was working this day so I entrusted my camera to Larry so he would take pictures.  He actually did good!  They visited Fran’s cousin Kathy over at the Grove in West LA and by all accounts had a memorable time.  When they got back, and when I was at home, we walked over to Esperanza, the restaurant right up Hyperion from here.

23-Jan-2015 12:04, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.005 sec, ISO 200
23-Jan-2015 12:07, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 400
23-Jan-2015 12:09, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 200
 
23-Jan-2015 12:10, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 200
23-Jan-2015 13:59, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 6.699mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 200
23-Jan-2015 13:59, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 6.699mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 200
 
23-Jan-2015 13:59, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 6.699mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 200
23-Jan-2015 14:00, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 6.699mm, 0.006 sec, ISO 200
23-Jan-2015 18:23, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 2000
 
23-Jan-2015 18:24, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 1000
23-Jan-2015 18:25, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 2000
23-Jan-2015 18:25, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 2000
 

24 Jan 2015 – Universal Studios day!

Fran hadn’t been to Universal Studios since the 1970s (or so she claimed!) and was excited to get a chance to go again and see how different it looks now.  It was a perfect day to do this as the weather was spectacular.   We made it to pretty much all the attractions, with Fran being a true sport and getting on everything.  We didn’t make it to the Simpsons Ride, but that’s fine.  We got on the Studio Tour which was entertaining as hell and slightly different than other times I’ve been on it – it seems that’s the case for every time you go on it that it will be slightly different.  Also went on Minion Mayhem, Shrek 4D, ate at Mel’s Diner for lunch, then down to the Lower Lot for Jurassic Park (Fran loved that ride), then The Mummy (she wasn’t such a fan of that, understandably), and Transformers The Ride, which had been closed all day but suddenly reopened while we were killing time in the museum.  We also watched the Waterworld Stunt Show and that was pretty damn cool!  After that it was a good time to go home, and after resting a bit, we went out for some delicious dumplings at Dim Tai Fung at Americana.  Very full day.

24-Jan-2015 09:17, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 11.0, 4.5mm, 0.004 sec, ISO 160
24-Jan-2015 09:17, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 11.0, 5.35mm, 0.004 sec, ISO 200
24-Jan-2015 09:18, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 7.549mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 200
 
24-Jan-2015 09:19, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 7.549mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 160
24-Jan-2015 09:27, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 5.0, 10.591mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 160
24-Jan-2015 09:27, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.0, 6.319mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 200
 
24-Jan-2015 09:27, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.0, 6.319mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 100
24-Jan-2015 09:27, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.0, 6.319mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 200
24-Jan-2015 09:28, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 5.6, 18.691mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 200
 
24-Jan-2015 09:28, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 7.549mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 200
24-Jan-2015 09:29, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 200
24-Jan-2015 09:29, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 200
 
24-Jan-2015 09:30, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 100
24-Jan-2015 09:30, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 7.325mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 100
24-Jan-2015 09:33, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 200
 

25 Jan 2015 – Day of Open Houses

We had a nice Sunday Brunch at Edendale before spending the following 3 hours going all over Glassell Park, Mt Washington, Highland Park, Burbank, North Hollywood and then Los Feliz/Silver Lake to look at Open Houses I’d found on Trulia.  There were some very great houses that are actually kind of within our price range, including the following (you can click on the images below and the Trulia page for the listing will pop up in a new window):

3651RoderickI think I liked this one the absolute most.  It wasn’t especially huge, but it’s been gorgeously finished and the price is much more right than others I’ve lusted for previously.  It’s actually very much in the price range I’m looking at.  The views are stunning and the location is pretty awesome.  If this sticks around on the market until February or so, I may have to think seriously about this one.  Also other things have to line up too, but I’m counting on things working out for the best.

There was another house we saw amongst the 7 that I also loved.  This one was in Burbank and is just stunning.  Not as affordable as the one above, and the bathroom situation is a little janky (the master bedroom’s bathroom is a 1/2 bathroom, while the guest bathroom is the only full one), but still….everything else about this is just amazing.  The neighborhood in Burbank is also pretty great.

1320WOakThe others we saw were okay but nothing to really freak out about and post screenshots of!  It’s exhausting driving around town though – at the end we were trying to find this condo development in Silver Lake and the address was COMPLETELY wrong on Trulia, as it sent us on to Edendale Dr.  I think Edendale Dr may be the most steep fucking street I’ve ever been on.  It was frightening.   Anyway, we weren’t too adventurous about dinner that night so we went up to Barbarella.  They’re going to be converting their Lago Pizzeria section into a BBQ joint in a week or two.  Larry & I are really looking forward to seeing how good the food is.

25-Jan-2015 11:11, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 2.65mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 32
25-Jan-2015 11:11, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 32
25-Jan-2015 11:11, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 32
 
25-Jan-2015 11:12, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
25-Jan-2015 11:13, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 32
25-Jan-2015 19:00, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 500
 
25-Jan-2015 19:05, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 2000
25-Jan-2015 19:06, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 2000
 

The last two nights (Monday & Tuesday), we’ve kind of kept things pretty simple.  Monday was a rainy day and we went to Target during the day (exciting!) and for dinner, we made it back to the Morrison.  Also got Larry to see Fiddler on the Roof and he loved it, as he should.  Such a good movie!   Yesterday I went to work but when I got back in the afternoon, we had dinner at Cafe Beaujolais where we went for my birthday.  REALLY good French food.  Le sigh.

Fran left this morning to go back home.  It was a wonderful visit and it was nice for her to be here during this kind of stressful time, and I know Larry loved getting to see his mom.  Hopefully we’ll be back east sooner than later to see the whole extended family.

In Other News!

I realize that I’ve been derelict in my duties concerning posting pictures from other festivities.  In all honesty, it’s been a fairly hectic January in that every weekend, we’ve had something planned to do.  That’s a nice thing but it’s also an exhausting thing.  It also means I get a little backed up in posting pictures!

10 Jan 2015 – Wicked at the Pantages

First up is that Larry and I took my mom to go see Wicked at the Pantages the day before we went off on our Disneyland 2-day trip.  I had only seen Wicked on my birthday back in 2007 when I first moved to New Jersey.  That time, I went with my roommate Shelly and it was a lot of fun.  I can’t say the musical blew me away and I won’t say much different about it now, but it really is an entertaining show.  The big numbers like “Popular”, “Defying Gravity”, and “Something Good” knock you out and are worthy of all the praise.  It’s just that the rest of the songs are fairly meh, at least to me.  The actual plot of the musical is fantastic though and that’s what keeps you interested.  It’s fun to see how the threads of the movie start popping up in the show.  It was also cool that Madame Morrible was played by Kim Zimmer, who my mom and I both know from her days as playing Reva Shayne in Guiding Light, the now-cancelled yet extremely long-running daytime soap that was on CBS.  She was wonderful in the role.  The woman playing Galinda was absolutely killing it too – her comedic timing was pitch-perfect.  “Defying Gravity’ is still stunning as the Act I ending.  I’m glad to have gotten a chance to see it again.  One day soon I’ll re-evaluate my rankings of Broadway shows to consider this as well as all the new shows seen since my last iteration.

10-Jan-2015 13:17, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 5.0, 11.272mm, 0.004 sec, ISO 160
10-Jan-2015 13:17, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 9.07mm, 0.004 sec, ISO 125
10-Jan-2015 13:18, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 200
 
10-Jan-2015 13:24, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 800
10-Jan-2015 13:24, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 400
10-Jan-2015 13:36, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.05 sec, ISO 1250
 
10-Jan-2015 13:36, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5mm
10-Jan-2015 13:36, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.125 sec, ISO 1600
10-Jan-2015 13:36, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.125 sec, ISO 1600
 
10-Jan-2015 13:36, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.125 sec, ISO 1600
10-Jan-2015 13:37, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.125 sec, ISO 1600
10-Jan-2015 13:38, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 5.0, 15.939mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 1600
 
10-Jan-2015 13:39, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 5.0, 14.96mm, 0.125 sec, ISO 1600
 

14 Jan 2015 – Broad City Season 2 Premiere Party!

The return of Broad City is always a reason to celebrate, so we did!  We had a special guest in the form of Rekha, who had been out here to do some project turnover with Nicki while also visiting family.  Additionally, everyone came over and it was wonderful.   Best thing was that Broad City came back very strong and was ridiculously good and funny.  Here’s hoping to a continued strong sophomore season.

14-Jan-2015 19:04, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 500
14-Jan-2015 19:04, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 500
14-Jan-2015 19:18, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 500
 
14-Jan-2015 19:18, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 800
14-Jan-2015 19:18, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 640
14-Jan-2015 19:34, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.059 sec, ISO 250
 
14-Jan-2015 19:43, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.05 sec, ISO 250
14-Jan-2015 19:43, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.042 sec, ISO 250
14-Jan-2015 19:49, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 500
 
14-Jan-2015 19:49, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 500
14-Jan-2015 19:51, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 500
14-Jan-2015 19:51, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 500
 
14-Jan-2015 20:39, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 500
14-Jan-2015 20:39, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 250
14-Jan-2015 20:39, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 400
 

Alright, I think that’s everything.  Like I said, January has been nuts and I’m hoping that things calm down and resolve themselves soon in February.  That would be great.  Also great?  If we can find a new place to call home, especially one that is something we buy.  I’d love the hell out of that.  Anyway, first things first.  Crossing fingers for a fabulous February.

Going Home For Christmas

Made the reservations yesterday – I’m going to be home in LA for Christmas for the first time in a few years. Yay!!!!

It’ll be nice to be back. I know i’ll get to see Mom’s side of the family, but I’m hoping to shoot for seeing some of the Dad side too. I won’t be back too much time though, so I’m definitely going to have to hustle if I wanna try to accomplish all that.

Anyways! So here we are again. How are you? It’s been such a long time. What? I’m a lazy bastard? How dare you say that! I..I, I – well, I resemble that remark! Okay, so my during-the-week updates aren’t exactly something you can set your watch to. Most of the time not much goes on, and this week really didn’t change that too much! I did have a fun Wednesday evening and an awesome Saturday day and evening, so that makes for a good week in my book.

Yesterday I was with Eddie and we went to see Avenue Q – and let me tell you that is a ridiculously funny musical – think a foul-mouthed Sesame Street (include puppets in your thoughts, they’re the stars of the show) with catchy songs that are aimed at teaching adults a thing or two about growing up and living life. It’s awesome. When talking with Eddie and doing a comparison between Wicked and Avenue Q (which is the extent of my true Broadway knowledge), I think Wicked is the more ‘fantastic’ one and has amazing production values, but the songs as a whole are not all that memorable. Avenue Q on the other hand is hilarious and the songs are very much ones that get stuck in your head because they’re so well-done.

As many of you may already know because I sent you an email concerning it, I’ve converted (succumbed) to the iPhone. On Friday, after work, I took a stroll over to Best Buy because I had been going through withdrawals and had to get my fix…and then I realized, why deny myself an iPhone when it is so freakin’ awesome…. so off I went to the AT&T store. I didn’t go to the Apple Store because if you ever have been to one of these stores, you know how ridiculously crowded they can be – now muliply that by 10 and that’s how crowded the NYC ones are. At the AT&T store though, it was very mellow and you get tons of attention and help without a bajillion tourists cramming around you. I was done in 10 minutes or so, including the pre-approval credit check and everything – you’d think for all the money it costs you’d have to spend some more time jumping through hoops, but I guess it’s mainly because you do most of the ‘hard work’ at home when you connect the iPhone to your computer and iTunes. I had to make a decision though, and I decided not to keep my Vegas-based cell phone # anymore. I’ve been living with that for quite a few years now and it just was time to get a more local #. So there I am.

Anyways, this weekend was quite nice and today I got to just stay in, continue re-reading Wicked (I had forgotten how incredible a book it was as I hadn’t read it for Years!), and basically veg around the house. It was glorious. And now I think it’s time to eat some dinner and watch a DVD!

Defying Gravity

This has certainly been one hell of a birthday weekend. It definitely defied expectations especially for being brand new to the city and having a very small small initial group of friends.

The week at work has been good – still making lots of progress and I think that I will totally not get fired. Yay for me!!!! But I have to be honest – it was hard to focus on work because I knew that I was more anxious anticipating my extracurricular activities. I’m not in the business of being too gossipy, especially about my personal personal life, but I am definitely happy to be out and about in the world of dating.

This first date out on Friday night was an incredible experience. I got to go out with a great guy and also see more of the city’s fun areas, this time over in Hell’s Kitchen. Went to a few very cool bars, a good Italian restaurant, a really fun dance club, and overall just have a great time. I was definitely tired though and I knew that I had still had more to do on Saturday, primarily going to see the musical Wicked and then anything that came up afterwards (sts). So I was able to get a bit of sleep in the afternoon (thank God) and then got ready for the theateh (you have to say theateh with a very snobby drawl). Shelly and I made quite the well-dressed pair going to the Gershwin Theater on 51st and Broadway!

About Wicked….AWESOME. For those that don’t know, Wicked is based on the book Wicked that details the Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West from the world of the Wizard Of Oz. It aims to show just why and how the Witch (her name in this story now Elphaba) was truly ‘wicked’ and gives a fascinating story that lets you see that your perceptions can be totally off if you don’t have the whole story. It’s fun to rewatch the Wizard of Oz with Wicked in your mind. So the story is actually very interesting and when I heard they were making a musical based on it back in 2003, I was intrigued. Unfortunately I hadn’t had the chance to ever catch it as it didn’t start touring the country until this year, I believe. One time in Colorado Springs at a Barnes & Noble, I saw one of those coffee-table books all about the making of Wicked and it looked amazing, mainly based on just how fantastic the sets, staging and costumes were. But I had never heard the songs, so I picked up the soundtrack. I was kinda bored, to be honest, by it. In hindsight now, it’s hard, especially in musicals, to really identify with Broadway-style music if you don’t have an associated visual memory to help you remember how you felt when you heard the song. So flash forward to now – I decided why not treat myself to an awesome experience by going tix to the hottest show on Broadway? And after paying a ridiculous amount of money for two tickets, me and Shelly were off to the theater! And wow….just wow. It’s an amazingly staged production and the performances were outstanding. There were a few standout songs for me, including ‘Popular’, which if you hear DOES NOT LEAVE YOUR HEAD ever; ‘Defying Gravity’, which has a mind-blowing production associated with it and a chill-inducing performance mixed with mesmerizing special effects; and also one called ‘What is This Feeling?’ which almost starts you thinking it’s about two college girls realizing they feel more than friendship for each other….when in fact it’s pure and utter loathing for each other. So those of you out in LA where I know Wicked is also playing right now: Go See It!!!! You won’t be disappointed.

Anyways, after Wicked, Shelly and I met up with her boyfriend, Ray, and her best friend, Claudia, who also brought her brother, Ray 2. We first went to the Marriott in Times Square, which on the top floor (48th) has a bar/lounge called The View. It’s kind of obvious why the title exists but in addition to a knockout view centered in Times Square, is also the only revolving restaurant in New York City. Pretty damn cool, yet also damn expensive and a little touristy. It was definitely something to experience though. After a few hours there, we then headed downtown to 3rd Avenue and 4th Street, where there were some more cool bars. Seriously, NYC has cool bars everywhere it seems. It helps to have a good guide, which my date from the night before and Shelly’s Ray both were, as they knew all sorts of fun cool places to go.

And now here I am, sleeping in and happy as hell to get some long needed sleep! I took some pics from yesterday so they’re below for your enjoyment. We were in the middle of Times Square and I realized, “HEY, I need some pictures from my birthday!!!” I didn’t think it would be appropriate to take pictures during my date, so that will have to just go in visual memory.

So in consumerist stuff, I picked up the Twin Peaks Gold Box DVD set that has every episode of Twin Peaks in it. Ah, I miss that show. I haven’t gotten Guitar Hero III yet – I haven’t even hooked back up my video game systems to the TV in the living room yet, but eventually I will. And in something I feel only a twinge of embarassment about (just a twinge), I did get the new Britney Spears album. I am hooked to that song, Gimme More. That seems to be the song du jour at the clubs too, but that’s a seriously awesome song to dance to.

Okay, I think I’ve caught up enough for you for now. Happy Birthday to me – I’m 31 and don’t care at all. 30 was the stressful one and even that turned out not to be all that bad. I think I haven’t felt this good in a long time, so seriously, if my 30s are the best time, which they certainly seem to be looking to be, then score! Oh yeah, I totally ran the New York City Marathon too this morning, just knocked it out before breakfast. That’s how I roll…..NOT! My lazy ass woke up at noon today…actually 11am when I realized daylight savings time had occurred (which I should have known about anyways – that damn time change causes all sorts of ridiculousness in the scheduling system we maintain and design at work)

3 Nov 2007 – Wicked and Times Square

The stage for Wicked before the show started. I've never seen such an intricate and decorated stage like this.
The stage for Wicked before the show started. I've never seen such an intricate and decorated stage like this.03-Nov-2007 17:57, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.125 sec
Ray, me, Claudia and Ray 2.
Ray, me, Claudia and Ray 2.03-Nov-2007 23:39, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec
A more angled view up of us
A more angled view up of us03-Nov-2007 23:39, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec
 
Me, Shelly, Claudia and Ray 2
Me, Shelly, Claudia and Ray 203-Nov-2007 23:40, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec
Me and Shelly facing the other direction. BTW, this is where the Naked Cowboy plays..when it's warmer I'm guessing
Me and Shelly facing the other direction. BTW, this is where the Naked Cowboy plays..when it's warmer I'm guessing03-Nov-2007 23:40, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec
Me and Shelly laughing at how awesome NYC can be
Me and Shelly laughing at how awesome NYC can be03-Nov-2007 23:40, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec