Friday, December 31, 2010

Pillow Covers R Us

I've listed my 24 pillow covers on craigslist - haven't gotten one bite. I dread selling these on ebay just because it  costs me to sell them, what with the listing fees and drives to the post office.


This one is a bit cool, as the printing is not just flocking or paint. It feels like the kind of texture you'd find on a movie screen - tiny beads.

Monday, December 27, 2010

This Old Sofa

Anyone need a free sofa? Here's mine -



It was originally a $2000 sofa, back in the mid 90s. Now, it's just a care worn, albeit comfy old sofa. I bought a 'new' one off Craigslist, and this one is going out on the curb.

Part of the Resolve.

New Years Resolve

I refuse to call it a resolution. That innocent little noun gets tougher when you make it into a verb. I am going to take action and clear out stuff if it kills everyone in the house.

First of all, I'm selling this little item on craigslist:



It's an old rifle/ammo crate someone painted to look like a toy box. I had some old linens stored in it, which made no sense, since the linens took up so little room, and this big box is just, well, big.

Next, I'm parting with the WW2 pillow covers - the military ones, which are about half the collection. I am keeping the souvenir ones.

After that, I'm going thru the son nut's old school papers and art projects, and giving that stuff the old heave ho. This is going to be hard, but I'm trying to form a callus on my soft little heart.

Then, my closet. I am going to donate that 20 year old ski jumper, and the old purses I don't use, and the shoes I don't wear, even if they're not worn out.

I'm going to convince my husband that 4 years worth of Dodger Blue freebie blankets are more than we can ever use, those damn Dodger bobble heads are worthless, and no one collects Eric Karros' stuff.

The garage will come next, and by all that is holy, I'm gonna park my car in there.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Friday, September 10, 2010

First Day/Week Blues

My hub nut, being the sensitive caring guy he is summarily dumped our kid off at school without much fanfare. When he came home, I yelled at him for not making sure son nut got his classroom assignment, so he grumpily went back to the school, only to find everyone had been sent off to class. So, there he is, tramping around campus hearing his name butchered on every security guard's radio "Mr. Hub Nart is on campus, Mr. Hub Newt is here, Mr. Hub Nit is on campus..."

It was probably a good thing son nut wasn't privy to that embarrassment.

We had missed the initial registration in August when son nut was supposed to get his I.D. picture taken, sign up for a senior buddy, and get his text books, as we were on vacation. We got our paperwork turned in by our friend and we got our list of classes, but the first day is when the kids are assigned their classrooms. Son nut also didn't get his photo I.D., or his textbooks and since there were about 70 other kids waiting for their pics on the first day of school, he had to get the photo done during lunch.

With all that said, everything went reasonably well, and he lived to tell about it.

Hub nut told me about a kid he overheard talking on his cell phone to his mom. Apparently, the kid had tried to get his classroom assignments when he was told he wasn't even ENROLLED! Holy smokes, that story broke my heart.

Son nut has P.E. last period, and they have weight training and endurance training every other day. These workouts are to ensure they shed that gangly goofy freshman appearance, and turninto competitive burly he men.

Lots o' homework already, and grumbling to go right along with it. Hopefully, he'll stay organized and on top of it, or it'll be a long 4 years.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The First Dreaded Day of School

My son starts 9th grade at Torrance High tomorrow. Of course, we have more questions than answers.

For one, after a gander at his 'schedule' I noticed there were no classrooms listed. So, I guess he gets that information on his first day. Great. Secondly, when we visited to find out where his locker was located, we couldn't find it. Great again.

He doesn't appear too concerned, and the awkwardness of being a new student should wear off after the first week or so.

I think I'll post about 'What To Do On The First Day Of School At Torrance High" for all you nervous nelly parents out there. I could have certainly used the help!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Yonsei 17 Dance Party-O-Rama

My son's friend is headed to Japan this week with a youth organization - his team will be competing against a Japanese team, and he'll be spending a few weeks at the home of a Japanese family.

His team also did a dance that they will perform - in the video, they're performing for friends and family before the trip.

I'm posting it because he's really excited about the upcoming trip, and because I thought it was pretty cute.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Bias at the Breeze

I've been a subscriber to the Breeze for many, many years. I typically enjoy the paper, with some exceptions, but this morning's paper makes me wonder whether I want to continue to get the DB.

I noticed that almost all the 'feel good' articles and lovely photography typically involved Palos Verdes, and the beach cities, whereas all the bad news and mug shots - shootings, rapes, dog attacks, theft - involved every other South Bay city. Now, granted, I expect there is more crime in certain areas of the South Bay in comparison to, say, Manhattan Beach, but there seems to be no effort to publish positive stories that involve, say, Harbor Gateway citizens. Confirming my suspicions were the DB archives. My search results had me conclude that the only Harbor Gateway stories typically involved the police log.

Here's a summary of most of today's DB's top stories:

Manhattan Beach - Dunes open. Volleyball tournament.
El Segundo - Feel good story about Afghan girl, Little League, school board vacancy.
Harbor Gateway: Stabbing.
Carson: Murder conviction.
Rolling Hills: Defraud case sentence.
Gardena/Hawthorne/Lawndale/Westchester/Playa del Rey: Maxine Waters charged with violating ethics rules.
Torrance: Foodies gather, Emergency Room standards.
Hermosa: Pier to Pier race.

Don't get me started on Meredith Grenier's column, which is basically an homage to wealthy pepperpots and their so-called charities and garden parties, i.e., disguised tax shelters for the Locust Valley Lockjaws.

It's time the Breeze represented the less affluent areas of the South Bay more fairly. Frankly, the next time that renewal shows up in the mail, I'll probably consider another option - the Sacramento Bee, anyone?


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

"I wouldn't walk in this neighborhood!"

"I wouldn't walk anywhere in this neighborhood!"

Comment made by an El Segundo mother to her son at a local KFC.

El Segundo's 13 year old All Star Babe Ruth team had just been mercy'd by Torrance's team at the local Torrance Babe Ruth Field. The field is less than two blocks from the KFC, and no doubt, the comment was directed at the Torrance parent who was at the same restaurant purchasing snacks for her team.

We've played dozens of teams in basketball and baseball and played in dozens of neighborhoods that range from poor inner city to affluent. El Segundo has always been, in my experience, the least pleasant team to play. Not because they are challenging or talented or vice versa, but because the audience that attends their games are by far the most obnoxious, hands down. I don't take pleasure saying that - unfortunately, it's true.

Given the town of El Segundo is absolutely charming and quaint, I heartily wish its denizens were anywhere nearly as nice.

With that, I'd like to congratulate the 2010 13 and 15 year old Torrance Babe Ruth All Stars for winning and moving on to their next challenge.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Damn you thieves!

My hubnut has been taking the bus to and from work for the last several weeks. He was really enjoying it. He would drive to a Park and Ride near the Artesia Fwy. and pick up the bus there. It was certainly saving us the wear and tear on the car, gas, and he was seriously considering giving up his $1000 parking pass.

Unfortunately, someone broke into his car today. That is certainly a bummer, but it appears they didn't take much, other than his baseball glove.

Hopefully, he continues his mass transit adventure. He has bragging rights at work about being 'green'.

BP World

Monday, June 28, 2010

Congrats, Angelo Gumbs!

This talented Torrance High School baseball player has been drafted by the NY Yankees - how cool is that?? And to think he ump'd a few of our Babe Ruth games! Couldn't happen to a nicer kid.


Epidemics that shouldn't be

Yup, Whooping Cough is officially epidemic in the State of California, thanks in part to people like Jenny McCarthy.

I'm posting two excellent videos on the subject of vaccinations - I can't imagine the pain it would cause a new mom and dad to know the death of their infant was preventable, if not for one unethical medical doctor, and a plethora of paranoid, ill-informed parents.

I chose these two videos because they are clear, accurate and easy to understand. Please pass these on - the health of the most fragile and innocent may be at stake.






Sunday, June 27, 2010

Mondo Video, Instant Update

Amazing what you can find on google...duh.

Here's a YouTube video of the owner as he appeared in the late 80s and a link to his rambling My Space page.

Mondo Video

Ah, the 1980s. The hub nut and I were newlyweds, broke and young. We spent many evenings exploring the cramped aisles of our favorite video store, Mondo Video, located in a tiny strip mall off Channel Street in San Pedro.

The owners, from what I could gather, were a son and his father. The location was dark, spooky and isolated, so the elder Mondo carried a pistol, visible beneath his sizable stomach. I don't know if I felt safer with the nearsighted owner packing heat, but that little item, coupled with his loud voice and wild hair was more than enough to encourage criminals to take their activities elsewhere.

The shop was tiny, but loaded to the ceiling with B-movies of all genres, old movie posters and underground newspapers. The store was a mecca for sullen movie buffs, shadowy characters and teenagers looking for soft-core B-movie porn, like Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS.

The two Mondos (I kid here, I don't know what their names were) were never particularly friendly to anyone, but they were less than rude to us, probably because we returned the videos on time and paid in cash.

This is where I fell in love with Z-movies, like Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! Spider Baby, Blood Feast and Incredibly Strange Creatures (Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies.)

One evening, only a few years after we discovered the place, we found a pile of videos in front of the door, with a small sign stating they were closed for good.

My heart was broken.

After that, we had a hell of a time finding videos we liked - Blockbuster never carried much in the way of vintage films, and most video stores didn't specialize. Only a few stores in the Hollywood area catered to our tastes, and that was too far for us to drive for a few movies.

I miss Mondo Video, and I always wondered what happened to the owners, and why the store closed. If anyone knows, I'd certainly appreciate the information.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Little Man, The Way Girls Are

Very dear little short film.


Shorn

I finally got my hairs cut. It was long overdue, like the old joke goes: What's the difference between a good hair cut and a bad hair cut? Answer: Two weeks. In my case, it was more like 3 months. My hair had gone from a bob to shoulder length, and at my age, it looked pretty darn horrific. I had given to putting it in pony tail or clipping it in the back. Scary.


Now, I look like a well groomed, albeit it, middle aged lady with my slightly Mrs. Brady shag hairdo. But it's such a vast improvement, I ain't complainin'.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Wordism

Which of the following are racist?







According to an article in the Daily Breeze, both are. (who knew Stephen Hawking was such a potty mouth!)

Apparently, the NAACP missed the 4th grade grammar lesson when "homophones" were explained - however, it's quite possible the word "homophone" was deemed politically incorrect, and is no longer taught in the public schools.

In the interest of fair play, equality and kumbaya , I'd like to introduce other imagery/words/names the NAACP should direct their righteous indignation. To quote member Lula Davis-Holmes, "If there's an inkling of a doubt, it should be dealt with. People are outraged."

• This guy's name is particularly offensive, and his music should be removed from retail shelves immediately (click on the picture.) As a person of asian descent, I cannot be victimized, and deserve an immediate apology.



• Health Maintenance Organization: HMO sounds like a derogatory word for homosexual and should be changed or modified. (see homophone)

• DayGlow: This word sounds too close to this. Calling for the immediate destruction of these and a name change for this company.

• This show and this organization is offensive to Japanese Americans - for shame!

• I am calling for an immediate boycott of this cleaning product.







• Pretty obvious what the problem is here.



• And Burger King's insulting burger:



• Tastes great, but I double-dog dare you to order this drink at a restaurant.

Frankly, there is a slur for pretty much every ethnicity under the sun. If you're looking to be insulted, outraged, or disgusted, seek and Ye shall find.

This subject has received its 15 minutes of notoriety, and that's about all it's worth. If the worse thing the NAACP can find to get upset about is this greeting card, perhaps we should rejoice, not be offended.

Junk House, RIP

There was a home on 223rd Street in West Carson, just a few blocks off the Harbor freeway and across the street from Meyler Elementary School. Does anyone remember the condition of this home the way it appeared several years ago? You couldn't miss this place traveling west from the off ramp. It was the most amazing, bizarre, nightmarish home ever.

I remember it well for several reasons. First of all, the yard was packed to the edge of the property with old appliances, furniture, and various junk. The debris tottered 9 feet high on all sides of the house, plus, there was a large truck out front with junk piled in the back. Once, I looked up the home on Google map (this was before the street view was available, unfortunately.) There was so much stuff around the home, it was visible with the satellite view.

My friend's aunt lived next door in a very neatly manicured home. The ramshackle mess must have made living there pretty bad, but she actually helped the tenants/owners from time to time. Apparently, there was no running water in their home, so they would ask to use her outdoor faucet to get water. Given the condition of the exterior, I could only imagine what horrors lingered within the blotched walls of that ramshackle home.

A few years ago, the family who lived there was either evicted, moved out, or otherwise removed from the property, along with the hoard. Over several weeks, acres of discards, flotsam and jetsam were hauled away, never to return. The house was cleaned up, repaired and cleaned enough to make it livable, and before I knew it, another family had moved in.

There has since been NO accumulation at the home, at least on the outside.

I always wondered who those people were, where they went, and what happened to all their stuff.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Doctors - I'm sick of 'em

That's an overstatement, but I've been to Kaiser three times this week, and I'm going back tomorrow. I'll be going at least four more times this month.

I'm never getting old, I swear.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Bad Citizen

I voted, but I would probably done a lot more good NOT voting, since I was a lazy butt, didn't really read anything, and was only interested in our local election and issues. I figured everything else is a lost cause, and that people who could actually make a marked change  would never run or could never be elected.

So, there you have it.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

iRefuse

My hub nut got an iPad a couple of weeks ago. It's pretty swanky, but in all honesty, it looks and feels like a really big heavy iPhone. I teased him about it really being just a laptop sized phone without a keyboard. Of course, he came home the other day with the iPad accessory keyboard.

Sigh.

I have a laptop, and a phone, so what would I need with a hybrid laptop?

While waiting at the doctor's office with my mom, I spoke with an older woman who had a Kindle. She had the first version, and said she took it with her everywhere.


What appealed to me was how simple and straightforward it was. No camera, just basic internet, not a lot of gadgetry I don't need or want. Think about it - you can load 1500 books on something the size of a flat paperback. 1.8 million out-of-copyright books available FOR FREE. Newspapers, everything in one place. The battery lasts for a week. It's perfect for what I want.

If I were a student, I would certainly like to be able to make notes in the margins and have them there permanently without fear of a semester's worth of notes disappearing into the stratosphere. That, and the ability to quickly rifle and earmark pages.

In spite of that, I want Santa to bring me a Kindle.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Gewgaw, Just Scarves - Redux

Once upon a time, on a laptop far, far away, I started a blog with the intention of posting my collection of vintage souvenir scarves and pillow case covers (HEY, it was better than collecting Pez dispensers or Beanie Babies.) The purpose was to eventually give up the collection, either by selling or giving much of it away - and there is a lot to get rid of.

I successfully gave away several of the more historically significant pillow covers to various military museums across the country, but it's harder to give stuff away than you'd think. Not that I have a huge personal attachment, but sadly, not everyone wanted one - YA THINK???

That blog hasn't gone away, but it's on permanent hiatus. In the interest of merging the two blogs I'm going to post the photos here from time to time.









Silk screen on acetate, yarn fringe.

Lordsburg was home to an U.S. Army internment camp from 1942 through 1945. In addition to Japanese intenees, there were Italian and German enemy combatants at this location.

An incident at the camp where two Japanese men were shot and killed was never fully investigated. Although the soldier responsible claimed the two men were trying to escape, at least one of the men had a severe back condition that prevented him from running. They were shot in the back.

To me, this particular pillow cover is probably one of the more significant ones, especially because of the internment camp connection. But because there is no Lordsburg camp anymore, and no one in Lordsburg is particularly keen on celebrating its notorious history, this cover is still stashed away in my chest.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Registration Day and June stinks

Tomorrow, I register the son nut for high school - oh, joy! I think the process is pretty assembly line, so it shouldn't take long.

I checked my calendar and this month is nuts - in addition to the usual sports stuff, orchestra and work, there's my dad's cataract surgery and other doctor appointments, dentist and orthodontist appointments, my mammogram, at least one birthday, an anniversary, end of school stuff and I don't know what else.

When does summer vacation start?

Monday, May 31, 2010

A Blistory of the Southbay

Get it? A blog on the history of the Southbay? A blistory? Hmm?

feh.


It's good reading, tho.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Change that traffic signal?

New Vids in the Playlist

In case you didn't notice - both of you - I have a host of videos in the side bar to the right. There you will find a plethora of videos I've culled from YouTube that, typically, deal with Torrance or the surrounding communities. There are at least eight new ones down there, and they deserve a gander.

Take a look, already!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

You stole my newspaper, biatch!

The title of this one is my pathetic attempt at being hip...

My hubnut is grousing about the theft of our Saturday Daily Breeze. This is the second week it's gone missing (in a row, that is - it's gone missing before.) I'm slightly ticked because I wanted to do the crossword puzzles while my son gets his hair cut.

Hubnut is plotting to catch the thief by lying in wait next week - at 6'4", 230+lbs, and a bigger head than Conan O'Brien's, he's a pretty scary mofo.

Apparently, neighbors are typically responsible for these thefts, at least according to this and this and this.

I think embarrassing the perp is the best preventative. Any suggestions?

Get a German Hotel in Torrance!

I just logged onto my old site, randommadnessintorrance.com and here's what I found (click on the picture below
:


Ew. It's now one of those generic sites no one actually goes to on purpose  - I mean, really, what are the odds that while surfing for information on Torrance, you also need information on a hotel in Munich?

I've tried to analyze this logically - the old site would have to get thousands of hits a day to get even one click.

However, there is a German/Torrance connection, and it's sitting right under my nose:



Friday, May 28, 2010

R.I.P. Gary

I'm coming clean.  I watched more than one episode of Diff'rent Strokes, and thought little Arnold was cuter than a bug.

Like everyone else, I watched his real life become, well, a bit of a train wreck. In memorial, here's a personal story I have of Gary Coleman.

My hub nut was hanging out with his younger brother and a couple other friends at Six Flags Magic Mountain (this was before we met, sometime in 1979.) They were having a grand time on the rides doing what teenagers do at theme parks - mess around on the rides pushing each other around and being loud.

Gary was in line behind their group at the log ride. He was there with his publicist (this alone is sad - typically you go to these places with a friend or at least your parents, for chrissakes.) The guys were joking around with him, asking him questions, and he was getting a kick being around this good natured bunch. They all went on the ride, and my hub nut and his brother and friends were (of course) horsing around, trying to tip the boat, rocking it like mad and otherwise trying to get booted off the ride, and Gary was laughing and getting a kick watching the craziness. When they got off the ride, they went to get in line again, and Gary begged to go on the next ride with them. They were more than happy to let him - but the publicist said no. He was truly disappointed, and my hub nut said he felt sorry for him because you could tell he really wanted to hang out with them.

I hope his final ride isn't quite as lonely.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

South Bay Youth Orchestra Performance



It's that time again - SBYO is going to perform at the Marsee Auditorium on June 5, 2010 at 7pm. It's one of the few times I get to see my son nut in a tie, so it's a very special occassion.

It should be a fantastic concert, with two of the kids in the orchestra performing solos, so come, bring your kids, and let them know there's more to playing music than Garage Band and Guitar Hero.

And at $10, it's a deal you won't find anywhere else.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Gone, but not forgotten, sort of 2

A couple of years ago, I wrote about several places in Torrance that are 'ex-parrots'. Places like the Shamrock roller rink, the Parasol Restaurant, JK Gill and a host of other has-beens.

That story got the most comments of any other I've written, so to honor that, I've decided to expand the geographical area which to wax nostalgic about.


Spot Market. When you were asian or otherwise and living in Gardena, this was the go-to market. The only other place with a decent selection of authentic asian groceries was the ORIGINAL Ranch Market in Downtown Chinatown on Hill Street...Anyhoo, there was a book/magazine area where my brother and I would pour and paw over the comic books, but an old chinese man would chase us off after we stayed too long and didn't buy anything. There was also a little restaurant in the back, but it always looked a little creepy to me. (A little unrelated trivia, I was married in the catholic church a few blocks away from the Hill Street Ranch Market at St. Peter's Italian Catholic Church. Originally, Chinatown was Little Italy.)

El Rancho Market on Western Ave and 182nd Street. This was a really small market, and the place we'd walk to buy candy and comic books.

Eagle Restaurant. This was an old skool cantonese style chinese restaurant - I think it was on Western Ave in Gardena, but I was pretty little at the time - I could be wrong about the locale. It was the kind of place that sold chop suey and egg fu yung. We ate there on Sundays in the 1960s before there was a Tin Sing's (in Gardena on Redondo Beach Blvd, now defunct.)

Thunderburger's. This was an incredible burger joint on Redondo Beach Blvd. and Normandie in Gardena. It had the most amazing stupendous teriyaki avocado burgers (Rascal's in Torrance makes an excellent version of this messy but marvelous burger.) The place had an amazing neon sign, and it was featured in a couple of movies. Next door was Missile Bowl, and Rocket Cleaners (the former is an ex-parrot, the latter is still there.)

The Jockey Club. This was a nightclub on the Redondo Beach pier that everyone who was asian and from Gardena used to hang out. That is, when they weren't hanging out at Gung Hay's, on Crenshaw and 148th.

Jack and Jill's Shoe Store. This small store was located across from the Sav-On Drug Store on Western Ave. in Gardena (remember the jingle? Sav-On Drug Stores, Sav-On Drug Stores....boom boom...SAV-ON!) My mom bought all our Buster Brown shoes there when we were small - later, when we were older and more sophisticated, we bought our shoes at Thom McAn's or Kinney. This was a time when actual shoe salesman dressed in a coat and tie would bring you a selection of shoes and assist you with fittings.

Fox Theater: not more than a few steps from the afore mentioned Sav On Drug store was this tiny theater where I was forever scarred after watching The Man with the X-Ray Eyes, starring Ray Milland. "If thine eyes offend thee, pluck them out!!!"

Nahas Department Store. I worked at the one in Gardena in the credit department, and on the sales floor. There was one in Palos Verdes and one in Santa Barbara. My sister and I shopped for fabric there - you could buy fabric for less than $1 a yard. I also remember the manager of the shoe department was a rather obese gentleman who had false teeth that would come loose. Not to be confused with the Gardena Department Store which is STILL doing business on Gardena Blvd., and the best place to buy all your Girl and Boy Scout supplies.

Ascot Raceway: Where the 405 and the 110 freeways COLLIDE!!!! On Vermont Ave., just south of 182nd Street. My friend Nancy and I would hang out there on Saturday nights as teenagers - it was as tacky and trashy as you would expect, but it kept a lot of young adults from racing illegally on the streets. You could hear the buzzing of the engines from my home, especially in the evenings, and they also put on a pretty good fireworks show.

The Big Slide. This is not the actually name, but it's what I called it. Located off Normandie Ave., right off the 405 freeway, it was quite the novelty to sit on a gunny sack and race down this enormous stand-alone slide.

Eldon's. Not as large and swanky as Mattel, but its proximity to my dad's employer, NCR made it special. A real toy factory next door to his office. Need I say more? Well, other than I got The Dating Game Board Game from there. Ah, the sixties, when toy factories could still be found right down the street.

The Raintree: This was a funny little local bar in Torrance at the corner of Torrance Blvd. and Anza that had a live DJ and dancing - I met my hub nut there. Yes, girls, you can meet a nice guy at a bar.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Dot com is dot gone

Well, if you happen to run a search on google for 'randommadnessintorrance' you'll notice when you click on the site, the dot com version is gone. Vamoose. Defunct, dead, deceased - it's an ex-parrot, so to speak.

After researching what to do when someone snipes your domain name, I read an article here: http://photocritic.org/copyright-dmca. My old site, was a mirror site that had all my content, graphics, photos, etc., but I couldn't update it or add to it. (I did find that if there was a link to You Tube, I could change the video that displayed on my playlist - interesting...)

I wrote a formal complaint to the registrar after running a Whois, and voila, the dot com site is now down.

Old dot com will still get hits, but if I keep updating this blog, eventually, the dot com will be but a memory. Eventually, I'd like to get dot com back, but if it doesn't happen, that's okay.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A hole in the ground

Some of the kids at my son's school will be 'head'-ing to Turkey this summer. If they knew what was in 'stall' for them when they get there, many would reconsider the trip.

This is the one item which will prevent me from ever becoming a real world traveler. I've traveled to many areas in asia, and this is a common sight.

Read about it one man's experience here.

They're not just in China, but in India, Japan, Turkey, parts of South America, and Africa. Unfortunately, when you're confronted by the need to use one, it's not remotely as funny as the article.

The upside is you're forever grateful to return home where you won't ever have to use one again.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Just like Mayberry

Tonight, we went to an old standby, Foster's Freeze in Old Torrance.

The great thing about the place, in addition to the ice cream, is it's a great place to chat with complete strangers.

In spite of the fact that it was cold and windy tonight, 5 people were in line waiting for ice cream. We chatted about baseball, Boy Scouts, the old Pussycat theater, the old Farrells on Hawthorne Blvd., restaurants we liked and of course, that it would be a shame if the developer who owned the Foster's Freeze property tore down the place, all while we shivered waiting for our ice cream orders.

Where else would this happen?

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Dot NET

I slipped up and lost my old domain name to some shark at godaddy.com.

So, I am now randommadnessintorrance.net. Fortunately, the folks at blogger will (hopefully) forward links to the old dot com address to the shiny NEW (not all that different) address. You'll note the old page still exists - I just can't edit it, or create new posts, dammit grandma.

I hate to break it to the cretin who off'd with my address, but I ain't paying hundreds of bucks to get it back. So THERE.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Benefit Rock Concert for the South Bay Youth Orchestra




Tickets for this event can be purchased at the El Camino College Ticket Office Monday thru Friday 10 am to 6pm, or on Saturday, May 15th starting at 4pm. Or, for a small processing fee, tickets can be purchased over the phone (see poster). Feel free to pass along this information to family and friends.

DID YOU KNOW...Most middle and high schools in the South Bay area do NOT have a strings orchestra? Most of the kids who play for SBYO are in middle and high schools from the Torrance, Palos Verdes, Manhattan Beach, and Redondo Beach area.

This is truly a worthwhile cause, but of course, there will be plenty of great music performed by some excellent rock bands donating their time and talents to this benefit concert.

But wait, there's more!  A Les Paul guitar will be raffled off during the concert - another great reason to come!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Officially Poor

Oi, we're broke. We'll be eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches everyday for the next two years.

I'm getting my son-nut's teeth straightened, which costs as much as what we paid for our first new car. Of course, an orthodontist will tell you it's not what they do, it's what they know.

One thing I know is $5500 is a lot for a bunch of wire and 24 trips to and from his office.

I suppose it is worth it knowing my son-nut won't grow up to look like a snaggle-toothed carnivore.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

One Bathroom

My hub-nut and two bro-in-laws put in a new, shiny marble floor into my bathroom. The old and ugly linoleum/vinyl floor is history, thank god. Bro-in-law #1 threw in the marble tiles, gratis - they were leftovers from another project. Bro-in-law #2 directed the installation and made all the tricky cuts.

However, when you want to remodel your one and only bathroom, you have to get creative. There is only one toilet. The door to the bathroom was removed, so privacy was a bit of an issue. Everyone had to rush and use the toilet before it was placed in the back as a nice piece of temporary yard art. When nature called, we blessed the nearby restaurants - I just couldn't bring myself to knock on my neighbor's door. Finally, around 8 pm the porcelain throne was reinstalled, and peace returned to our home.

The next day, grouting and sealing the marble took another several hours, so bathroom privileges were again put on hold. By late that evening, my son-nut was dancing around the house, trying to get one of us to drive him to a restaurant. Backyard, you say? My son-nut is a real Monk when it comes to bathroom etiquette, and we couldn't convince him to water the tree in the backyard. At the point where his bladder was about to explode, he grabbed a small disposable cup, and stomped off to his bedroom. Moments later, he reappeared to grab another cup, then another, then another. Four cups later, we all breathed a sigh of relief, that is, until he dumped his four yellow offerings into the kitchen sink, which I then had to sterilize.

By morning, the floor was set, albeit very cold. Reminder: wear slippers into the bathroom.