After ten years now of these productions, I’m considering retirement.
Happy New Decade in any event!
After ten years now of these productions, I’m considering retirement.
Happy New Decade in any event!
At a very different point of the day than last year, and in exactly the same spot as two years ago, I’m glad to have gotten my annual look, albeit brief, at the great cycling pros in motion in the 2017 Amgen Tour of California. Of course, my spot three years ago is still the most exciting place to be. Perhaps next year, as has occurred in the past, they’ll finish in Santa Barbara!
Not quite a year after marking his 90th birthday, we must now say goodbye to the truly legendary, one-of-a-kind pillar of “warmth” himself, Mr. Don Rickles. I can only dream of turning insults into a lucrative career, as others will certainly try. Still, no one will ever do it quite like he did.
At long last, the view from my Santa Barbara living room could be mistaken for a Caribbean hurricane or Chinese typhoon, if only for a passing moment or two. But then, this may very well be the first weather windfall of many we shall see in the coming weeks. What a change!
Our third annual “Drynuary” kicked off one full calendar year of living in Santa Barbara, highlighted by a Mardi Gras celebration, a 50th birthday, an 80th birthday, the preparation for and start of a new career, and deepening connections with friends both old and new, all alongside a reduced 4,328 cycling miles– my lowest total since 2011. Now, in reflecting on this latest “filling” yet challenging year passed and looking ahead to the next, changes are in store, goals are set, and our next big chapter awaits– insightful and rewarding as it shall be. Meanwhile, to anyone who might dare to think we lead exciting lives, I say balderdash. We merely take a lot of photos, of only good moments of course. Altogether, here’s to another 365!
While I’m away from this site and not posting anything current, please feel free to immerse yourself here in this very non-current gem, a true classic of all classics, television as they sadly don’t make it anymore. Old in years as this great show now is, it simply never gets old in appeal– especially as I get ready to turn another year older, still waiting for my own dais.
This special evening seems like a lifetime ago. Compared to the length of her very, very long life however, it was merely yesterday. Needless to say, I’m honored to have enjoyed this uniquely memorable friendship in her final years. Plus, how nice it is that our impromptu camera appearance has been up on YouTube almost since it was recorded. Happy Birthday Greta!
To those who call 2014 “The Year of the Selfie”, I say HA! After all, I invented selfies in 1986, didn’t I? Or was it 1978? I don’t exactly recall. In any case, here’s to yet another full and unpredictable, challenging yet rewarding 52-week stretch, ending all the better with “the stick.”
Needless to say, the passing of Thanksgiving leads us right into Christmastime. This means as trees go up and lights get strung, while parties kick into swing and egg nog flows, so comes the annual playing of my favorite classic Christmas duet performance. Here’s to old-school shtick, Dean-and-Frank style! Enjoy some other versions too, if you’re so inclined. 😉
Thanks to the winning combination of modern technology and current real estate marketing practices, my childhood home and neighborhood are now visible from this rare aerial viewpoint.
Don’t say she’s in a better place, because she probably had a house in the Hamptons. And the best line I heard all day: “Just keep on laughing.” Clearly, Joan Rivers wants us to do so.
The biggest missing piece of this bittersweet event du jour— Joan is not here to make jokes about her own passing. Or is she? Her funeral is yet to come, and may it be everything she wishes it to be, as she described in her recent book, “I Hate Everyone, Starting With Me.”
Joan was everything that made her fabulously one of a kind: opinionated, irreverent and irreplaceable, just to pick a few of so many apt descriptors. Altogether, I’m sorry she had to go, perhaps in a less-interesting manner than she was hoping, no less! At the same time, one of many life lessons with which she’s leaving us is that we needn’t take death too seriously. After all, “funeral” does begin with “fun.” And given the way Joan has outlined hers, we all should be looking forward to a good show– set for this Sunday. May we indeed “keep on laughing.”
From a royal send-off to fittingly colorful sheep, the big first day got underway with full fanfare in the English city of Leeds, followed later in the day by polka dot victory for this year’s oldest rider. Then, as instantaneously as everything can change in cycling, stage 1 did not end as hoped for the day’s largely anticipated winner. Not only did the region’s star competitor lose the day– but rather, complete disaster prevailed. With the rare chance to capture yellow in a sprint finish on not just his native soil but his mother’s hometown of Harrogate– before the eyes of William, Kate, Harry, Prime Minister Cameron and thousands of supporters, not to assume any pressure of course– shockingly, painfully, and in a cycling instant, it did not happen.
The 101st Tour de France appears likely to resume with one less rider at the start of stage two in York, a huge loss indeed to the next 20 days of racing. Sadly enough to say, for as “royally” as his day began, his crash on finish line approach looks like a pretty bad one for Mark Cavendish.
Having cycled more than 5700 miles in 2013, you’d think I were in top physical shape. Let’s just say that for as much as I love food, a smaller number on the scale is in order for early 2014. It happened last January: Patrick and I both lost TEN pounds in 30 days! Then throughout the year we put it back on and then some.
2013 brought us our seemingly well-planned move out of San Francisco to the sandy outskirts of Los Angeles, a big lifestyle change that we welcomed at the time while viewing as a relatively short-term stepping stone. As such we’re already plotting our next move into the new year, likely within Southern California– but perhaps not.
For better or worse this was our year of change, challenge and consideration. As ’13 becomes ’14 we’re braced for more of the same while welcoming our longer-term home. Along this path of course will come my much-anticipated life milestone, about which many of you will soon be hearing in advance!
Another year, done. Here’s to a prosperous, rewarding and all-around fabulous 2014 to come!
Well into December, with the 25th fast upon us, it’s time once again for the annual playing of my very favorite Christmas song performance of all time. They sure don’t make them like this anymore!
Any TV commercial that makes me laugh out loud simply has to be good, and this one takes the lead– starring one of my all-time favorite fictional comedy characters in a series of such spots. Not to mention, to my satisfaction there’s an automobile involved here of course, while perhaps these new laughs will indeed trigger some sales– we’ll see. Meanwhile, if only I can figure out where to score myself that fantastic suit!
Anyone like myself who grew up in Southern California during the 1970s and 80s– in earshot of a TV set that is– surely can hum the unmistakable jingle. As a child in Woodland Hills, I could not have told you how to get to Long Beach. However, having seen enough wacky car commercials with his dog Spot— again and again as intended– I knew that to “go see Cal” on Bellflower Boulevard meant a hot deal on a ’79 Cutlass Supreme.
Decades later I distinctly recall these iconic spots, unmatched in style, creativity and– to borrow the term– “exuberant cheesiness.” They came from a man whose personality flourished in the right time and place, defining a bygone era of advertising firsts. And now, after a long life memorably lived, he too has departed at age 92. With a few chuckles along memory lane, we bid farewell to the one-and-only Cal Worthington.
Happily recalling my “big” cycling streak of 2008, that summer I proudly pedaled 50 consecutive days. Now in the summer of 2013 I’ve surprisingly yet gladly surpassed that number, marking a grand total of 65 straight days in the saddle. From June 29 through September 1, my never-complaining legs propelled me 1625 miles altogether, for a modest yet perfect average of 25 miles per day. With this “average” accomplishment I now rest for a day– or two, or three– before resuming in pursuit of my yet-to-be-set distance goal of the year.
Five years older, apparently I’ve fallen into shorter rides overall, reflected in the lower daily average without any longer single days. Altogether, now with some extra pounds on me, plus an aging machine, a few mechanical setbacks, and those ever-present daily time limitations, I’m thankful to be keeping myself in relatively decent cycling shape while a return to competition remains my goal, other factors permitting.
Meanwhile, when I refer to my stats “matching up perfectly with the months,” this is to say my end-of-month distances have been hitting milestone numbers, while my average has increased proportionately. Neatly enough, on May 31 I totaled 2000 miles for the year, at a 400 mile-per-month average. Then on August 31 my year-to-date total hit 4000 miles– notably sooner than last year— for an overall monthly average of 500.
In any event, I’m getting there– wherever “there” is! It’s all relative– that is, what seems like a lot to a novice is nothing to a pro, while I remain somewhere in between. And as I’ve said I say once more: It’s now time for a short rest. I’ll catch you back out there very soon, unless you more likely catch me first!
It can’t be me– I wasn’t born after all. While I’ve always assumed the attractive, likable and allegedly self-absorbed Warren Beatty was the honoree, we’ve just been reminded once again that the mystery has never quite been solved. Nonetheless, one of my all-time favorite, now-classic songs is back in the news this week– Jeannie Moos-style to boot– prompting that same old question that Carly Simon has yet to answer after more than 40 years! You probably think this song is about… well, someone worth revealing, don’t you?
From a chaotic beginning to a first-time evening end, along with everything good, bad, high and low spanning three weeks time, the 100th Tour de France has reached its always much-celebrated final destination. With the major standings in place, one big question of course remained to be answered at the last moment of stage 21: Would the Missile get his beyond record-breaking fifth consecutive win on Le Champs-Elysees?
Peter has his green, Nairo has his white AND his polka dots, the U.S. got a top-ten overall win even without any stage victories, and as we knew for a while would be the grand result, Chris Froome keeps yellow as the winner of the Tour de France. On the other end, fun-themed Orica GreenEDGE— seeing all nine teammates to the finish– includes 36-year-old rookie Svein Tuft in last place overall– a distinction Phil Liggett quickly reminded us today that for the feat of completing this 3404-kilometer journey, carries no disgrace whatsoever.
As for Cavendish, certainly no disgrace for him either. It was close– very close— as his four consecutive Paris stage wins stand as a record not about to be broken, yet not to be added to today. He lost his would-be fifth by a bike length to none other than “new sheriff” Marcel Kittel.
Altogether, another spectacular French summer display of professional cycling prowess has now come and gone, all the more colorfully concluded with Paris’ well-planned Centennial year celebration. Personally, I’m happy to have been able to stay in the cycling spirit with my own rides on every day of this Tour. More than ever I look forward to my own miles to come in the saddle– as well as those of the awesome pros!
Actress Jean Stapleton reached her 90th birthday this past January, a fact of which I was aware well before her death last Friday. Check out this helpful source to see if any of your classic favorites are still with us!