what's up?

jet lag

1953 chevy deluxe

1953 chevy deluxe

so, i’m back at home. three weeks is a long time to be away. twelve hour flight back, followed by an hour in customs, and an hour and a half drive home. hint: after a twelve hour flight, don’t pick up people and make them sit some more in a space even smaller than what they had on the plane. almost wept cuz my legs hurt so much. almost told them to just pull over, and drop me anywhere…i’d call an uber, just so i could stretch my legs.

got dropped off at my mom’s, where i’d left my car parked. said my goodbyes to everyone i’d travelled with. mom had just returned from hanging out with my dad at the hospital, and she really hasn’t done a lot of cooking lately, so offered to go get me food.

on the flight, they’d fed us just after take off, and just before landing. food was crap. they ran out of the chicken option just as they got to me, so i was stuck with rice and zucchini, some weird cube of something that was neither vegetable or dessert, and something that wanted to be a cream puff, but wasn’t good. they doled out exactly one plastic cup of pepsi.

the latter meal was a cold sandwich, with italian ham, which is mostly fat, with some really crap apple juice, and another forgettable dessert.

so basically, i was starving, even though i’d also purchased oreos and a can of coke in between meals.

i was literally reeling from exhaustion, as i just can’t sleep on planes, so i’d been up for about twenty hours by then. told my mom, if she could just drive me to a fast food place, i’d be good. so the closest, quickest food was weinerschnitzel. quite a step down from all the pasta we’d been eating for the last couple of weeks.

anyway, felt somewhat better after that. chatted a bit, then went to bed.

next morning and today, have mostly been tired, but not crazy crazy jet lagged. i should keep the walking going, but just didn’t feel like climbing the nearest mountain/hill here in whittier. and it was almost completely fogged in around the house this morning anyway.

currently copying over about two-hundred and twenty-five plus gigs of pics from the trip, which will probably never be looked at more than once, but i’ll keep them anyway. better half, mom, and my sister all want to see them anyway.

still haven’t had time to go visit my dad in the hospital. better half needs to go the market, except he has overtime he is currently working on at home, and will still need to go to the office later, so i’ll be here watching his mom tonight.

i satisfied my in-n-out craving yesterday, and today od’d on guacamole. just not looking forward to work tomorrow, am a little sleepy, but resisting the urge to take a nap.

it’s good to be home.

back to a back end of a deluxe from the viejitos’ show last summer. in the shade, the details get a little hard to see, but there are some subtle pinstripes going on.

been a long time since i’ve seen a classic car that isn’t a fiat, bmw, or a vespa. not going to count the red fifty-six bel air that i saw uptown today, since that dude is always cruising uptown, and i’m over that car.

go dodgers

1953 chevy truck

1953 chevy truck

almost midnight in florence, and my kid has found one way or another to get online and watch the dodger game. lol. would have thought the wine they drank at dinner would have knocked him out, but he’s all keyed up to watch the game.

no real plan for the morning, so sleeping in anyway. we ended the evening early with gelatos, but trying to upload pics for family to see just seems to make the time scream by, and now it’s later than i’d expected.

going to climb four-hundred-sixty-three steps tomorrow, to the top of the duomo—top of the cupola of this famous church—which is about double what we did today, so i need the rest.

posting this bad-ass truck, cuz it’s a beautiful color, and oh so shiny. 


1953 chevy truck

1953 chevy truck

saw this truck at the dia de los muertos show last month. that paint is so cherry red and delicious...so appropriate it's in front of the candy store.

my kid had spun out on the freeway on some ice last month, and insurance totaled her car. her dad has been looking for a decent used car for her—he said on friday that he may have found one. i'd previously offered to help drive it up there, but now he can't get the time off.

so i may be taking a not completely unexpected road trip north to washington state this week. just wasn't expecting to have to go so soon. i guess i'll have to tell my boss as soon as i know for sure.

then i need to get a one-way ticket back asap, before the price gets much higher.

my brother may go, or i'll just drive it alone. either way, i like being on the road. he's gotta be back by a particular day, cuz he needs to get somewhere else, so timing will be tight.

just saw my kid last week, and pretty much will be handing over the keys, and maybe get a meal, then outta there, and back to work by monday.

they've said i need to use my vacation time anyway.


1953 pontiac

woke up this morning around three am. windows are open, cool breeze, and an overwhelming smell of smoke. being near the hills of whittier, had to get up and see if the hills were glowing nearby.

nope, but worrisome enough, breathing that strong smoke, that i couldn't get back to sleep. 

alarm went off at four. so about five hours of sleep. going to be a long day. 

dressed quickly, hoping to get out of town, on my way to work and away from the smoke. hungry too. 

fifty miles away, still smokey. turns out camp pendleton/san clemente had a fire going too.

anyway, two more days to a four-day weekend, and i have no plans. one or two car shows, and backing up files i guess. kid wants to go see that aliens covenant movie that all but disappeared quickly. did it suck?

hoping the smoke keeps the temps down, but doesn't force cancellation of the bomb club show at santa anita for a second time. 

nice green pontiac found at slick's anti bomb show. i had the cars here all to myself for the couple of hours i was there--everyone else in long beach at the bombs magazine show. 

got there at start time, after driving up from orange county. brief stop in tustin, to see if anything was at the biweekly show at enderle center. hadn't been there in a couple of years, being that it's more out of my way since spending more time in whittier.

was busy, but on a quick look around, only saw a couple i would really shoot, so didn't pull my camera bag out of the car, and left quickly, hoping for stuff i like out in montclair. 

driving into the lot at slicks, almost thought it had been cancelled or i had the date wrong. there were just four or five old chevys parked, and a tent setup but not much, compared to the memo ortega show there earlier in the month. 

parked in the shade, unloaded my bag and was about to go see what was going on or not, when one of the guys asked if i could move my car around the corner, as they were expecting more cars. bag back in the car, move to another shady spot under a tree. he starts taping off the show area. 

about that time i hear a siren, as the veteranos club shows up, and some other cars. so, ya, i had enough to shoot and keep me happy, until i couldn't take the heat anymore. 


1953 chevrolet wagon

nice to look at pictures from the winter months, and think how cold it was, or the rain and the clouds, on a sweltering day like today.

really hate summer. in whittier. no air conditioning in this house. fuck.

i like how this picture turned out. i want those clouds in the sky. not just for the added drama, but simply because california blue skies are boring. 

was sitting in traffic on the way home today, listening to the news on the radio about how the latest way state government is trying to twist the truth and bend taxpayers over a barrel—squeal like a pig, boy. wheeeeeeee! started thinking where else would i move, if i ever decided to leave this place. not really sure. 

figured i'd have to schedule some reconnaissance vacation time in various cities, at different times of year. don't want to end up in florida like my brothers, and then act all surprised by the weather and hurricanes and bugs and gators.

i'm thinking someplace cold. just walk out into the snow and disappear. maybe not into a little cabin, typing out my silly manifestos here. i ain't that crazy.

rain is nice too. barefoot in the mud.

maybe i just have a travel bug without the funds or the better half to cure it.


1953 chevy bel air

first of all, let me apologize to the person(s) on the freeway at four in the morning, who do not think eighty miles an hour is fast enough. it's not like there aren't other lanes you could be in, yet feel the need to crawl up my tail pipe.

oh how i wish a cop on you after you give up and take off at a hundred miles an hour. even a flipped car, but then i take that back--it would mess up my drive to work more than you already have, asshole. 

quick post, as i do have to get to the office. this is memo's baby. it was his anniversary show, so had to get a shot of the car. where it was parked, couldn't really squeeze in for another angle, with cars and people congregating in this prime apex of the lot.

pretty sure i've seen it elsewhere, just didn't know it's history. if i tagged it right in my digital garage, i'm sure i could find other shots of it. 

gotta get movin'...weekend isn't gonna get any closer if i don't. ttfn. 


1953 chevy bel air

hey, guess what? i didn't go anywhere this morning. too many shows to choose from, no recommendations, and just didn't feel like it.

so i'm starting this year off in a mood. and i'm trying real hard to bite my tongue and keep the peace. feeling a little back slide into by shell. i blame that on that ahole at the dukes show. still pretty pissed about that.

meanwhile, i've been filling my calendar with dates for upcoming car shows that i've enjoyed in the past. already know i'm going to miss chicano park day this year, as i have a business trip planned for that week/weekend. oh well.

relatives are in town, here in whittier, and at my mom's house.

holy hell, a plane just flew really low and made a tight u-turn, heading in for the landing at lax. yep, we are in the landing pattern here. just don't usually see them so low except when it's windy or rainy, which doesn't seem to be the case, as far as i can tell from this window seat.

sorry, got distracted by the big, shiny object.

anyway, hoping to see some old cars cruise by after the shows, heading through uptown. maybe i'll chase them with my iphone, but i don't feel like hauling my gear out. better half just pointed out a black and red sixty-one impala driving by...and so it begins.

transom of my mind

1953 chevy bel air

better half was just reminding me about how he woke me up to let me know about all the cars lined up just outside the door. says he knew i didn't hear more than cars and front window. not the words "to the left."

i peeked through the curtains to the right. i was sleepy, ok?

he says i do that a lot. lots of random thoughts that tangent and richochet off whatever he is talking about, and i ask five completely different questions back to him in rapid succession for no reason whatsoever. i gotta be losing my mind.

he specifically mentioned this car when he woke me up, as one i needed to see.

dia de los puercos

1953 chevy bel air

wanted to get out today. there were a couple of shows to consider. chose to go over to covina, to the dia de los puercos restaurant. was supposed to be a toy drive.

got there after start time. there were only about seven cars and a cycle there, mostly from timeless classics club. ok, figured i'd just start shooting, and more would show up.

thought people were still recovering from yesterday's mooneyes and/or hangovers.

spent over an hour just shooting those cars. a couple more showed up. a guy on a basic black motorcycle showed up. he asked me what's going on. he was on his way to a motorcycle toy ride. he sat and watched and talked on his cell phone for a while before leaving.

i went inside, to have some lunch. food was ok. first time there, so i've only tried one plate of tacos, er, taquitos. sort of tasted like hot dogs in a crunchy shell. not really what i expected. guess i was hoping for something else, but i tried.

after, took pictures of a couple more cars that showed up, and then left. stuff to do at home, fun was over.

lee harvey oswald

1953 chevrolet wagon

beautiful bomb club chevy from legg lake, on the way back toward my car, only took a few more shots after this one. i remember being overheated at this point, not knowing i was already getting sick with this cold, and shouldn't have been out in the sun. needed to get back to my car, where the water bottles were waiting for me. it seemed so far away...in the next parking lot over, under the shade of a tree...an seeming oasis in the asphalt. i should have just bummed a cold one off of someone, traded for a print of their car or cash.

every once in a while i just have one of those days. sitting on the freeway, thinking random thoughts. decisions i've made and how they've affected others. past is past, but still having effects on the present. i could sit here and stare out the window and waste a lot of time thinking, but time to pack all that back into the little box in my mind, and get on with things.

they played the godfather at the little cinema up the street the other day. love that movie. had to go by myself, since my better half was taking care of his mom, who had caught our cold after all.

reminds me of the day my better half got to meet my family.

we'd all gathered at my younger brother's house in los angeles. both brothers, my sister, my parents, and the family of each all were there to put him through the inquisition.

generally, he handled it all fine; as a group, we conspired to act like kids and embarass my mother. my better half had given each of the us "kids" little tubs of putty "fart" stuff, instead of bringing a bottle of wine or somesuch greeting gift. we had been in the backyard, on the little porch, high up on the hill. my mother climbed the stairs and approached and wondered why we all looked so guilty. we all hid the stuff behind our backs, like little kids. 

she wondered what we were talking about. my younger brother started babbling about something or other, while he randomly pushed on the putty he had hidden in his pocket, which occasionally blew off with little "noises." she stood next to him, and kept tapping him on the arm, thinking he hadn't realized that he was farting in front of the new guy on the block.

then my older brother got in on the conversation and making the fart noises with his putty behind his back. then we each did.

she got so flustered, and then yelled at my brother for giving the stuff to everybody, and what would my better half think? my bro exclaimed, "but greg gave it to us!" the rat.

but to get to the point, on how the day relates with the godfather.

at the end of the evening, family pictures were to be taken, for the rare occasion of having everyone together. my mom's camera was plopped upon a tripod, and the different permutations of family were planted in front of it.

the youngest grandkids chased each other around when not posing with fake smiles.

at some point, my better half was behind the camera, while a bunch of us were getting into position. i remember my younger brother was walking toward us, when from the side yard, my nephew launched a nerf rocket at his sister, from one of those larger size nerf blaster guns.

well, it missed the intended target, but from very close range, it whacked right into my younger brother's nuts. he instantly hit the ground howling. well, he dropped to his knees, making a silent 'o' face, grabbing his jewels, and then between clenched teeth, said, "what a day i'm having!," then keeled over.

his son stood for a moment, then dropped the gun, and walked away, around the corner of the house. (looking back, in my head, the music started playing, and the newspaper clipping reel began...)

meanwhile, we all stood laughing at the situation. my older brother leaned over him and asked, "you have any mountain dew left in the ice chest? don't move. i'll get it."

he is seriously in pain, and we're all just cracking jokes. even his wife doesn't really bother to help him.

as it turned out, my better half had at the critical moment, fired off at least a three shot burst on the camera. it had perfectly caught that lee harvey oswald moment in a series of shots, from the firing of the gun to that moment of impact, and the beginning of the fall. we all got a peek at it on the back of the camera. it existed. it would have made a great xmas card.

day was over, we helped him up into the house, and everyone eventually headed their separate ways.

my better half called my brother the next day, to see how he was doing. his wife answered and said his testicle retrieval operation went well. [one of her rare jokes] my brother answered in a high pitched voice, playing along, of course. size of a grapefruit he said, spending the day with an icepack. needless to say, the nerf gun disappeared.

but the next time i went to visit my mom at her house, and asked to see all the pictures she had loaded into her computer, that series was mysteriously missing. she denied they ever existed. doesn't remember it happening. shit. i wept. they had been perfect.

i should have snagged the memory card.

and now if you ask him about it, he has selective amnesia, and denies it ever happened.