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xman

1961 chevy impala

1961 chevy impala

made it to san diego on my own. took a train. it’s really difficult dragging two bags up and down the stairs on a moving train. my weak ass arms did ok on the way there, and getting them into the overhead bin.

today coming back, after yesterday’s carrying a tripod and camera for five hours, i just couldn’t do it. the conductor helped me get my bags on-board. i sat on the lower level, reserved for disabled peeps. figured i’d move if they made me. they left me alone, and no one sat next to me either.

arrived on friday afternoon, rode the little red city train to my hotel, and got settled. got an upgrade to a better room, but being on my own, i didn’t get the bigger room i had last year. was so missing the big bath tub, but then, i worried that i would have had a hard time getting out of it.

the sun was still up after i had some dinner, so i took the red train down to barrio logan, to see if anything was going on. pretty much the last few years, nothing happens, as the cops are there making sure nothing happens. as it was, there was only one old chevy truck there, and only because there was a family having a picnic.

i wandered around the park, took a few shots of the murals, and headed back to the train. usually, i’d get some carnitas over at the northgate market, but i’d already eaten, so oh well.

i got up before the sun on saturday. typically, i’d be at the park before the sun, but this year i was a little unsure. i don’t know why. last year i took the train. had to switch to another train to the park. lots of homeless people on whatever poison of their choice mill about that early. better half insisted i take an uber this time. so i waited until just after sunrise this year.

cars were already rolling in by the time i turned the corner to the park. early this year. overall, it was organized a little different than past years as far as roll-in. so many beautiful cars.

i decided to start up on the far street, by the imperials club house. found this car up there. the owner chatted a bit. he’d hung a banner advertising his podcast on the club fence, but wondered if it would be better on another bit of fence. he asked my opinion. i thought the club might not want it on their fence. he thought maybe it would be in more pictures on the other bit. i took my couple of shots of his car, and saw he was already chatting up the owner of the car now in front of his banner.

no idea if his podcast is any good, but since he took the time to chat, shout out to him and go check out xmanradio.com.

trippy

1958 chevy impala

1958 chevy impala

looking forward to pomona next month. wondering if it will rain. wondering if i’ll have time to go. my life is very much a day-to-day mystery of where i’ll be and what i’ll be doing anymore.

got this backend shot of a fifty-eight last month. nice car, but i just like this piece of it right now. 

———— 

well, here i sit all down-hearted...in san francisco, but my heart isn’t here...he’s in whittier. 

can’t say it’s all been downhill, but the trip sort of started that way. mom dropped me off at the airport after work yesterday. all good, short security line, plenty of time to sit on my ass and figure out what i was going to do in the evening. the one hour flight was supposed to take off at five, so i was going to hold off eating until i got to the city, and planned to go get a crab from the dudes with the big boilers outside at fisherman’s wharf.

plane boarded right on time. pushed back from the gate just a bit late, and started rolling toward the airfield. then the plane stopped. figured we were just in line for take off. nope. mechanical problems, heading back to a gate, but we had to wait to get an open gate now. 

cap’n crunch in the cockpit says they hope it is just a matter of rebooting the computer, but has to wait for the mechanics to board and clear it. yup that’s what it was, but then we had to wait for offical paperwork and clearance before we could get going. 

the guy sitting next to me was having coniption fits as he was going to miss his connection to sacramento. was up at the front door trying to change his flight plans for a good twenty minutes. he should have taken his crap with him and just left, but it was all the way at the back of the plane with me. 

really hating the flights i’ve had to book through the travel agency at work. they are always double or triple the price of any flight you could book on your own, and pretty much every trip has had issues. bumpy rides aren’t their fault, but ya, there’s usually that too. we are required to use the agency, so whatever. 

so, an hour and a half later, we were cleared for takeoff, and with sacramento man still onboard. he whined to the lady in the window seat, who had a connection to redding, but she thought she would still be able to make it. sacramento guy said the gate agent had booked him on a flight for seven am, but he was expecting them to put him up in a hotel. sure dude, maybe.

the flight was absolutely full, as were the overhead compartments, so i had been forced to check my bag at the door. at least they didn’t lose it. but i did have to go wait for it at baggage claim.

i’d intended to just ride the bart into the city, but now it was close to eight at night, and didn’t think it would be safe that late, especially when i’d get to my stop. never used uber at an airport and didn’t want to deal with that. work was paying for the ride, so i took a taxi. 

named my hotel, and the friendly north african driver said of course he knew where it was, and started the fare and headed onto the freeway. he was listening to a podcast in his native language, which he’d occasionally translate the topic. sounded like one of those radio call-in for advice shows. women complaining about their men not helping more around the house, and the strict division of what was perceived as womens’ vs mens’ work. also learned a bit of his family history, with seemingly forced marriages and uncles offering up sibling’s daughters for marriage at age thirteen. wtf.

i’m looking out the window, and wondering about the route the guy is taking to the hotel. off the freeway, he’s taking us up the very steep hilly parts of san francisco; the hills where you are glad you are not driving a stick shift and get a red light. the hills almost as steep as a roller coaster at magic mountain. 

passed grace catherdral, and as i’m wondering about that, he pulls up to a curb in front of the huntington hotel, and says here you are. i see the bell hop inside starting to open the door...i say this isn’t my hotel...i’m down by the water and the name, even in my mumble speech doesn’t sound anything like huntington. he just says oops, and makes a u-turn. of course the meter is still running. did he do it on purpose, or was he so distracted by his podcast?  guess i’ll complain when i get home and argue the charge.

when i finally get to my actual hotel, he sits in the car a moment longer, so the meter clicks to the next amount before he stops it. bastardo. added an extra ten bucks.

no bell hops at the door for some reason, but i can handle one bag easily. it’s now about nine pm; i’d had my better half call ahead to let them know i’d been delayed. check-in was quick, and i got a room on the top floor as requested, just had to walk a hella long way around the hallways to got to the room at the opposite end from the elevator.

small room, but it was expected, since i was alone. through my stuff down, and headed back out. i was starving. didn’t think the crab guys would still be cooking this late on a thursday in the off-season. ended up at in-n-out, which had a line, but still had some seating available. burger was sort of not completely cooked, but i ate it anyway. fries were fine. 

by the time i was back in my room, and ready to sleep, it was ten-thirty. meeting at nine-thirty in the morning, i’d planned to get up early for a shower and time to find breakfast on the way. 

alarm goes off,  reluctantly get ready. it’s cold, even with the heater on, it doesn’t really manage to cut the chill. probably didn’t set it high enough. thinking about where to eat while i dry my hair, i remembered i also needed to get on a teleconference at eight. no breakfast for me. well, i did grab a donut at krispy creme, but that doesn’t count.

————- 

getting late now, and i’m super tired. will write more tomorrow. 

granny watch

1958 chevy impala convertible

1958 chevy impala convertible

i’m seeing more shows happening at this location in covina. not terrific, especially when a lot of cars show up, but there is space if they need it, due to the closed supermarket next door. close enough that i can get back home quickly if needed, and i haven’t noticed certain a-holes attending this one. apparently, i do hold certain grudges when earned, and it has ruined my enjoyment of car shows more than i think.

should have kicked the guy in the nuts at the time, but i didn’t, and bitching about it here doesn’t fix it. he’s an ass, probably was a bit drunk, and probably doesn’t even remember. i do. asshole.

anyway, the veteranos show was quite full of cars, so i was in a happy place. better half kept saying things were fine, so i didn’t need to head home as early as i thought. i shot maybe ninety percent of the cars that were there before i left. i did skip a few. people in the way, hood up, not my type, the usual reasons.

a lot of them are just ok shots. need to get out more, to keep my eyes open to seeing a good shot.

i liked this one. usually shoot fifty-eights from the back end, since that’s the interesting part for me. i did shoot that, but i just like the crop and reflection on this angle.


better half just left to search for a couple of new internal hard drives for me to fill up. hoping to get a price match at frys, but they mostly never have what he’s looking for in stock. otherwise, he’s getting time out of the house to do whatever he wants, a break from watching his mom. i could recommend a few toy drives he could visit…

she seems to need a break from him as well. wish they were a board or card game playing people…i’d hit her up, give her something else to do besides sleeping or watching tv.

maybe tomorrow we will begin hauling xmas crap in the house. my annual crabby, gloomy mood is starting to descend already.

post thanksgiving

1962 chevy impala

1962 chevy impala

here’s a majestics’ car from this past summer. a latin gents show out in cypress. don’t see too many yellow impalas. maybe i just don’t notice them.

thinking about this latin gents show, makes me wonder how ernie is doing…he had some news that day. been too busy to get out to any of their shows since then, so haven’t heard from him since.


i did not go into a turkey coma yesterday. my sister bought a full dinner from gelson’s or some such whoop-di-doo market. mom has had enough to deal with lately, so giving her a break from cooking the traditional dinner. pretty sure her time for cooking the big family meal is done, and future holidays will either be bought or i will have to volunteer to do it.

i sort of half assed said i’d do it, but was happy my sister just picked one up.

i’ve cooked a turkey before, but i’m not all about the bird, so i guess it turned out ok. i want to say that was decades ago, for my ex and his parents. gosh, my daughter was probably only a year old…time flies. i get no joy from cooking, and avoid it when i can. anyway, they always dumped hot sauce on anything i cooked, so, i just didn’t bother the next holiday. they are happier with tamales anyway.

this year, as usual, better half stayed home with his mom; he sent me to my parents house…”never know how many more holidays you’ll have with them.” my bro showed up; wife and daughter stayed up in los angeles with their friends. dad initially wasn’t feeling well and wasn’t going to join us, but he did come down the stairs just as we were sitting down to eat.

the company was good, but the food was unremarkable. only a few bites of turkey, and the pathetic mashed potatoes. i’d brought a cherry pie, but it sort of tasted like they’d given me a sugar free version, so disappointed.

bro is in town without a return ticket home. they’re looking for a house, and he is spending time with mom and dad. wife and kid going home sunday. they wanted to go to disneyland today, but pretty sure they bailed on that black friday hell.

i drove home this morning, expecting to see store parking lots full, but noticed them to be only part full. did people go shopping at midnight? was happy to find no one at in-n-out, and no one in the drive thru, so went there and grabbed some burgers for my better half and myself.

have otherwise, not done anything or left the house today. hoping to sift through the nine-thousand plus photos from my trip this weekend.

i’m blathering, so i’ll just stop.

do not enter

con stilo bbq-4310And9morehdr.jpg
1963 chevy impala

1963 chevy impala

dad in the hospital again. mom and sister with him.

i'm exhausted but can't sleep. frequent updates help/don't help.

gotta photoshoot tomorrow at work--12 headshots. gotta put on a happy face and carry on. really hard for an introvert to get through more than a few, and this will be over two hours. oh well.  

---- 

can't remember; did i already post this one? last month, local little barbeque. shiny, black cars are easy to shoot.  

if i’m there, i’m there

1954 bel air and 1958 impala

1954 bel air and 1958 impala

story of my life lately. gone are the days of three or four shows in one day. lucky if i get to one a week. 

last weekend there were a few bigger shows that would have been good, but timing didn’t work out. i did manage to get out to reality car club’s cruise at manny’s el loco.

me, and not even a dozen classic cars. pretty much shot them all. several times. no randoms going through the shots. even took time/stalled and went inside to eat.

i don’t blame people for not showing up, especially if they’d already been roasting under a hot sun all day. one person inquired online…seemed he didn’t even know about it. that might be the club’s fault.

anyway, made the best of the situation. these first two were my first two. a few more showed up afterwards. owners were hanging out behind them, out of the shot. seemed friendly enough. asked for cards, but sounded familiar with my m.o.

beautiful cars, that were there.

fourth of july

1964 chevy impala

1964 chevy impala

away from my computer, and not finding any pics on my ipad with flags waving, so i’ll just put up this old one.

early morning out in south gate, waiting to go onto the golf course at the azaelia festival. pretty sure this was a majestics car. very nice, with the sunrise orange sky behind it.

standard airbrushed, large-breasted women painted down the side. at least they are fairly well done—kudos to the artist—i’d be afraid i’d fuck up a paint job on a car. same goes for all the pinstripers out there. cuz omg, there is definitely really bad work being done, and what are you supposed to say to the owner? blow sunshine up in there and say, “yes that’s great, definitely looks like your kids and/or wife/side chick.” nah, i just don’t take pictures of them...too tempting to me...if you can’t say anything nice...

i think this was the year they wouldn’t let me in early, so i had to fend for myself in the parking lot until almost the time for spectators to be let in. that really sucked. if you see me sitting out there, let me ride in with you in your car; otherwise, i may just go find another show to shoot.

————-

holiday, and here i am, sitting in a pollo loco, josé feliciano singing soulfully, “light my fire,” while i enjoy the air conditioning. no one here, except the employees, and i guess a kid that belongs to one of them, quietly staring at a cell phone.

woke up this morning in my half emptied house. kid still has a lot of stuff to get out of here. he’s leaving the beds, a kitchen table, and a desk behind...won’t fit in his new apartment, or has otherwise upgraded with new. ok, i can use the beds, since mine were tossed during the six years he was in here, but i have a table and desk elsewhere, so need to decide what to do with them.  

can always put them in the alley in whittier—lots easier and quicker than trying to sell stuff. i have no patience for it. or i can continue to have them in storage until my other kid moves out and give them to her. 

very quiet and cold at my house, which my deeply introverted self is enjoying, almost like a vacation, from the house in whittier. 

a large number of porsches, ferraris, and lambos roared by early morning. never saw so many pns cars on the road before. must be an old douche white guy car club, out being weekend warriors, taking advantage of a holiday mid-week. all going over the speed limit, engines roaring, but no cops around, of course. if i drove eighty in a forty zone, no doubt one would happen to be around and give me a ticket. 

there is a lot of fixing to do here after this kid is out, but the other is impatient to get in, so we’ll see what i bother to get done. her big beast dog will hinder remodelling; probably will have to send him to stay at my mom’s while anything is done. 

pretty sure i’ll rip up the flooring and replace the cabinets, especially since a pipe burst last month, and there seems to be some issues with the wall behind the dishwasher. you know the drill, replace one thing, and soon you’ll be replacing so many other things, so it all looks good.  don’t know the first thing about doing these things, but my ex has offered to help or at least find people to do it.

i need to walk back to my place, but the sun is full up, so will be flitting from shady spot to shady spot the whole way. if i start feeling too ill, i’ll get an uber. 

now that the eagles are singing, “peaceful, easy feeling,” i will be on my way. have a great holiday! 

touchy feely

1958 chevy impala

1958 chevy impala

so i went to the uptown car show yesterday. didn’t get down the street until fife-thirty, and the sun was already coming up. oh well. better half walked me down to where the first bunch of cars were parked, to make sure i’d be safe. when he saw tudy, there, he knew i would be ok. familiar faces make him feel better about leaving me alone so early at a show. 

intended to head out to the other end of the street, by the hotel, in the staging area, but the sun was already up, and those typical sun behind the car shots i get there, were not really going to happen. different day of the month, different month than they have done in the past.  

besides, i got distracted by the big, shiny things parked along the way. volunteers get first dibs on parking early, and there were a couple of clubs that i saw—originals and socal tribe. so i shot some of their cars first. tried to take advantage of where the sun shown down between buildings and hit the cars. a few of those were busily being polished before they headed off to direct traffic, or whatever they were told to do. others, the guys were in the way, and it’s not my place to tell them to move...it’s their show, they’re doing a job, i’m just a fly on the wall, so to speak. i just come back for the shot later. 

finally got to the staging area, shot the few cars i liked there—usually they are packed in and overflowing to side streets by that time, but this year they’d moved drive-in to eight in the morning. that’s ok, whittier shows always seem to be let in late...usually by the fire marshall’s hold up. 

anyway, retraced my path back up the street, shot cars i’d passed up, and decided to head home for a break. it was already getting warm, and i was thirsty. convenience of having that option is nice. 

noticed the groupe car club cars had filled in one of the last side streets i had to pass on the way, and decided to get some of them too. there were a lot of them—i think i heard someone say they had at least thirty or forty members there, and it looked like most of them where on that block. 

unfortunately, it was after eight by then, and they were beginning to let them in to the main drag. i hurried up, but once they get going, they move too quick for me. 

i spied this impala a block down. just by itself, the owner and another dude standing by, a street closed sign just beyond. i took a short break in the shade of an overhang, expecting them to get in the car, and head up to the line of incoming cars. i really didn’t want to head down the slight hill for nothing, only to walk back up the incline.

after a few minutes, him not moving, but rather talking on the phone, i headed over. 

the other guy came over and watched me set up. he hovered around, out of the direct shot, but his shadow kept moving across the car. finally started talking to him, hoping he would move to a different position, but no. i think i’ve talked to him before...can’t quite remember which show, or maybe it was at pomona, but i did remember the accent. from the follow up email he sent me, and his email address, it must be french. 

anyway, i moved to the other side of the car, thinking at least i’d get him out of the path of the light, and that did work, but he continued hanging around next to me. finally asked if he wanted to be in the picture, which really was what he wanted all along. 

so this is how he wanted to pose for the picture. does the owner know him? i wouldn’t touch someone’s car without permission. at least it was just the tip of his gloves. not sure if they were for weight lifting or bike riding, but when i reached over to shake his hand, he stopped to remove the glove first. 

i left to walk up the hill, and he went back to the car and the owner. he had told me that the battery had died, and the guy had been calling for a tow truck, which arrived by the time i’d reached the next corner. hadley tow must love these shows, as there are always cars that overheat or otherwise not start. 

ruined

1964 chevy impala

1964 chevy impala

here’s an old impala, with the morning sun hitting it just so. there was a line up of an impala club, just under ther coronado overpass, waiting for their turn to get into the show at chicano park. i think this car was near the end of the line, so his back end was hanging out in the sun—-lucky for me, i saw it.

———

today is my son’s birthday. i’m sitting down in san clemente, outside some random restaurant his wife selected, waiting for them to show up. got here early to avoid the worst of friday southbound traffic.  

almost tempted to keep on going to san diego, but the uptown show is tomorrow, and my better half would miss me, so i’ll head home tonight.  

for my kid, i have a small gift, as well as some cash—what the kids always ask for—not enough to help them move out of my condo, but enough to go to get him into disneyland for one day...so not really that much. 

i’d stayed up late last night, making him some pan de elate, a sweet bread thing, his tia used to make him when he was a kid. it’s sort of like a yellow cake, cut into squares,and drowned/soaked in sweetened condensed milk and brandy. i used to make it for him often, but now he tries to keep in shape and so hasn’t had it for a few years.  

i was at my parents’ house. my daughter is currently living there with her dog, waiting for her brother to move out of my place. sort of musical chairs, where i probably will never live in my own place again. 

like i said, i was up late baking. left the pan of bread on the counter to cool. my mom said she’d cover it before she went up to bed, so up i went to sleep.  

this morning, i go to the kitchen for a bowl of cereal before work, and the pan has been covered with foil. atop that is a post-it note warning that is not to be eaten, it’s for my kid—this pointedly directed at my dad, who will help himself to anything in the kitchen.

knowing my boy will not want to eat the whole thing, and likely to take it to work or relatives to share, i added to the note, that it was ok to have some pieces. i left it there and headed to work. figured i’d pick it up on the way to dinner, placing some chunks into a gift box of some sort, that i’d buy at lunch.

got a call today frm my daughter around eight a.m.  she seemed distraught, as she said something terrible had happened. 

being that both of my parents have fallen recently, and have health issues, i began to worry instantly. you know, the adrenaline build up kind? 

she began to tell me how she had awakened and realized she needed to go buy some dog food or something for the beast’s hungry belly. she assumed my mom and dad were still sound asleep. 

she locked the dog in her room and left for the store. she got back about a half hour later, and the dog was waiting inside, by the front door. my mom was not home, so she figured she had gone to run errands.

in the kitchen, she put the food in the dog’s bowl, on the floor. 

he’s usually like a vacuum, always famished, and inhales food in minutes. this time, however, he seemed uninterested. weird.  

then, she noticed that the foil was slightly warped up at the corner on the bread dish. she hadn’t thought much of it before, as foil is bendy and the bread was still covered. 

as she pulled the aluminum back, she realized why the beast wasn’t hungry. the mofo had helped himself to the bread! 

i’ve mentioned before this dobie is tall enough he can just rest his chin on the counters, but he’s never done anything to stuff on the counters before.  

and it turns out my mom had been out all morning, so the little bastard had also figured out a way to open the bedroom door. is he some sort of velociraptor from jurassic park? did he learn? 

we are guessing he just stood on his back legs and helped himself to breakfast. no paw prints or things knocked on the floor. and he hadn’t knocked the glass pyrex bread dish on the floor, so there’s that.  

he conveniently had only eaten most of the soft center of the bread, leaving the crusty edge pieces behind. no one is going to eat that—he probably still licked it. 

anyway, my daughter was distressed and had cried before calling me, knowing that i’d stayed up making it for her brother’s birthday.  

i just kept laughing, picturing that dog doing his thing. she kept saying sorry, and not understanding why i wad laughing. what was i supposed to do? i couldn’t fix it, couldn’t go home and make more at the moment. it is/was going to make a good story tonight at the dinner table. 

happy birthday, kid

happy birthday, kid

bbq

1958 chevy impala

1958 chevy impala

better half went to the market yesterday evening, while i stayed home with his mom. 

got a call from him about an hour later—his van wouldn’t start, called aaa, but had frozen food, etc., melting in the back. so i had to make sure his mom was ok to leave alone for about ten minutes, with her pain pills, a phone, and wheelchair nearby the bed. 

start to worry that i’m going to get in an accident, then he couldn’t get home, and she’d be stuck in bed for days...cuz his sister still isn’t back...and probably will never be...

i got there and we threw all the groceries in my trunk and back seat. just finished when the aaa guy showed up to check the battery. i took off, and was back at the house within about ten minutes, unloaded the car and got the cold stuff where it needed to be within another ten minutes. 

better half calls and says battery is fine, driver thinks its a fly wheel or some other original part that has worn down. repair shop closed for the day, and they’re getting a tow truck to haul it home.  

they show up and he wants it put in the street, in case i need to go anywhere, as parking is hard to come by. neighbor shows up, and wants the same spot, and the tow truck is blocking the driveway. she takes off pissed. roommate does the same minutes later. whatever. 

so, didn’t make it out to a fundraiser in covina after all. 

this morning, he had the van towed to the repair shop, only to be told there were no service people in on sundays anymore. so he left it there, and called me for a ride back. i guess he could have ubered, but it wasn’t that far. same deal—meds, phone, chair, and on my way. we’re back in twenty minutes. she didn’t miss us, just watched tv. 

i decided to drive over to montebello park to see if anyone showed up to this first annual barbeque on an overcast mother’s day...because that’s just where mothers want to be on mother’s day, right? well, i do, and it’s my favorite weather for pictures, overcast and cool, but the parking lot was mostly empty, and the few cars that were there parked mostly around the edge of the park and across the street. oh well, at least there were some. shot the ones i liked, or were interesting, and had to head back. 

as usual, as soon as i packed my bag, more cars started to show up. driving down whittier boulevard, saw several very nice cars going the other way. damn, i wanted to go back, but had other things and people to worry about. but it was nice to shoot for about an hour. 

i’ve seen this rumberos car elsewhere. i kind of like this shot of the profile. looking at it again, i think i need to tone it down a little; too rough looking i think. maybe i’ll remember to fix it when i get back to my computer. 

down at my mom’s for the night—my kids took me out for dinner—and now i’m done for the night.