Archive for December, 2007
So, i’ve been going down to Baja since i was about 15 years old. A place that i go quite a bit is Rosarito Beach. As a matter of fact, I have a Rosarito Beach Hotel timeshare there that i got about 10 years ago for a great deal– so i try to make it to there every year or two (sometimes more.)
Tonight on the internet, i was reading about this old timers hot rods on bannerbob.net and saw that he was a pilot from soca. Reading further into his site, i found these great old pictures of the hotel from the 1950-60′s, i think:
This first shot, above, was taken from the air (ol’ Banner Bob is a pilot from back in the day.) Note how small the hotel is (no tower, etc) and how tiny Rosarito is. Take note the the airstrip is right between the hotel and the ocean.
Here is a view of the pool area of the hotel from the airstrip. Notice the plane. Nowadays, below the pool area are more rooms, and a grassy area before you reach the beach. Notice the octegon shaped bar– now that extends onto the pier.
Above is where the pier is right now. It extends out right to the left of the island you see in the picture.
Here’s a picture of the pool area back in the day. Stoked, as it really hasnt changed that much.
Here’s the owners house. Nowadays, that’s the Spa and the Chaberts Restaurant. Also note that a new building tower (lots of rooms) sits where the airplane parking is. in the sandy area, there is a lower pool, spa and slide.
Im excited to find these photos.
In closing, here’s a pic of Bob and his Model A Hot Rod (also on his site,) getting ready to do a little street racing back in the day. I love it:
Reading about Bob’s adventures has kept me up to almost 3am. Time to sleep…
Hope you enjoyed this as much as I did,
December 30th, 2007
Ladies– you might wanna hide your men. I enjoyed the Broadway shows sooo much, that i obviously must be gay or something…. :-) Wanted to follow-up and give a quick rundown of the trip to NYC that Anissa and I took the weekend before last. It was a great time:
- The last straw that pushed us to go is that we saw a “buy 1 get 1 free” flight deal with Virgin America– which is a new domestic carrier airline. Thus, $300 bucks round trip for both Anissa and I. Brand new planes. Great service (can even help yourself to soft drinks in the public fridge in the back of the plane.) Good food offered for sale onboard (we had a fruit/cheese plate and a steak sandwich) and a great onboard entertainment system (TV, movies, games, chat w/ other seats, and soon to be email and internet.) As you know, i think most domestic airlines suck badly compared to those outside the US– so it makes me happy to see a new player starting to kick ass.
- When we arrived at JFK, we took the airport train to the Howard Beach station of the ‘A’ route of the subway system. Having been to NYC about 10 times, i know the city pretty darn well at this point, and i think the subway is the best way to get around. Being that it was traffic time on a Friday when we arrived, taxi would have been misery in wait and fare.
- Anyway, took the train from Howard Beach, through and under Brooklyn, under the East River, into Manhattan. Then we got off at 42nd Street and walked to our hotel. While on the subway, as typical the entertainment on the train was great….. we saw 3 kids put on a breakdance show right in the middle of the aisle while the train was hauling ass, an Asian lady selling the latest DVDs (booklegs of those currently in the movie theatres) for 5 bucks and a good glipse of the latest urban styles and activities. I love it.
- Hotels in NYC during the Christmas shopping season are the insanely expensive part of the trip. Wasnt unusual to see rates of $700 a night… Taking rates and location into consideration, we decieded to stay at the Best Western “Presidential” right on 48th St and Broadway. The location was excellent and the price was comparitively reasonable:
- Well, the hotel was ok…. which was ok because we didnt spend a lot of time there. The plumbing sucked (loud and our sink was clogged the whole time,) but that aside it was fine. All in all, i’d stay there again, with no issue– but wouldnt make an effort to.
- That night (Friday,) after we landed in our room we immediately ventured out. Ate good Japanese Food at the restaurant next door to the hotel. Then walked around Times Square and Broadway area. When we walked by “The Color Purple” musical, Anissa said she always wanted to see it, so inside we went….
- First of all, the folks in line we’re a good 98% black. Being around this, it reminded me that San Jose really doesnt have a big black community. Coming to NYC puts you right into a big one, and it’s real cool with me. The folks here were very genuine, lively and nice. I fit right in, as many black women always liked me because of my height, and im told we’ve got black in our family tree (lol, that’s a bit of an inside joke.)
Anyway, while waiting in line (they had tickets available for sale, yep) we noticed that some of our black brothas and sisters were passing around a “Buy 1 get 1 free” coupon between eachother, thus scoring killer buys on the tickets. We also got some of that love from a nice couple who loaned us theirs. Thus, $115 bucks for two tickets instead of one. Buy 1, Get 1 is becoming a theme for this trip and i dig it.
- The Color Purple was the first musical ive ever seen (Broadway or not.) It was amazing. I was happy because i didnt at all get bored from mostly singing, I was able to follow the story well, and the performers were just so damn talented. They almost sounded so good that i thought it had to be lip synced. No way it was and i was blown away. Im told the lead part in the show was played by an American Idol winner, Fantasia. She too was amazing.
- The next day, we walked all over the area…. Times Square…. All over Broadway…. Rockefeller Center ice skating (went to the “Top of the Rock” at Rockefeller Center that night, and the views were amazing. Especially looking at the Empire State Building from there.) Fifth Avenue Shopping…. I love walking NYC, and it was great.
- Anissa wanted to pick up some of her favorite lotion, so we hopped the train to C.O. Bigelo’s (sic?) pharmacy (there since 1800′s) in Greenwich Village to get some. While walking around that area, we found a corner flea market and we picked up a couple great buys…. 1) A 1940′s electrical multitester tool. It’s a beauty and i may post about it in the future. It mounted in a leather covered case that opens. Has all the probes and documentation. I love old tools, and this is bad ass. $10 bucks. 2) Bought a couple old Peanuts/Charlie Brown records. The ones you play, and the case is also a book where you can read along. I loved those things as a kid. Buy 1, get the other Free… $5 bucks.
- It was damn cold (yes, we saw it snow,) and we decided to walk all the way back to our hotel from Greenwich Village. I bought a new Navy blue (obviously) P Coat (you know, like the old military wore,) and i love it. Warm, very high quality, fits me nicely, made in US. Now one of my favorite articles of clothing.
- We were really glad we walked back. While on the way, we stopped at my favorite NYC corner pizza joint (Ray’s Original) and had a couple slices. Ah yeah…
- Once back at the hotel, we changed and then went to see Young Frankenstein that night, on Broadway….
- OK, I am a huge fan of this movie…. so coming in the door i expected to be a tough customer to please. After all, how could you match Gene Wilder as Dr. Frankenstein (“steen”, franken “steen”,) the movie monsters performance of “puttin on the ritz,” etc. The movie was just so amazing….
Well, the pulled it off… the show was AMAZING. The dude who played the doctor was perfect… all the characters were brilliantly cast…. “Puttin on the Ritz” made me laugh so hard that Anissa had to nudge me for being loud (I tend to shout “yeah!!” when i get excited.) It was excellent. Real excellent.
So, there you have it….. I’m a Broadway fruit, and we had a great time. Already planning on another trip this coming Summer. I love summer in the city, and i’ve always wanted to go to Coney Island.
BTW: My daughter was pissed off that we didnt bring her. I got an “anonymous note” on the Internet from somebody who said i was mean for not taking my daughter, because she ALWAYS wanted to go to NYC, and I probably just left her with grandma!!! Being that my daughter has an infamous past with her anonymous notes, it didnt take much to figure out who sent it to me. That said, i’m a sucker for spoiling my daughter too, and Sydney will be going for sure next time.
Couple more things… Here’s a pic of the Yahoo sign right in the center of Times Square. I like…
- Here is a pic of the biggest billboard in Times Square. It appears that Sean “Puff whatever the fuck is name is” Combs is such an ego maniac that he had to use himself in his Sean John advertisement. It’s huge (as you can see, about 15 stories high,) and he’s overlooking everything in the center of NYC. What a joke…
December 24th, 2007
My friend Bill Wishart fucking rules. Long story, short: i lost the transmission to my Lincoln due to the fact that the tranny guy disappeared. Needless to say, these things are not easy to come by….. The are the Twin Turbo version of the Cruise-o-Matic (thanks to help from a fellow HAMBer in info,) basically the HD Lincoln transmission that was only there from ’61 to ’65.
Checked my voice mail the other day from Billy and he found one. $40 bucks. bad ass.
I have another source for the rebuild, and im feeling better this place wont disappear and will do me right. We’ll see. God i wish i learned auto transmissions. Not knowing leaves you vulnurable, and i hate that.
December 18th, 2007
Boy, Dick Cheney sure is “lucky!” His Halliburton stock options are up 3281% just this year alone. Wonder how that happened? I’m also curious– how’d you get that nickname anyway, Dick? http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=12966
On a completely separate topic, of course, a friend sent me a quote today that i felt was pretty interesting:
“Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.” –H.L. Mencken
In case you wonder who H.L. Mencken is: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H._L._Mencken
December 18th, 2007
OK, im going to come back and write about how great our trip was to NY. I’m also going to come back and write up about how good i think my friend Steve’s book is. However, I read something this morning and it’s left me confused and bothered….
I’ve got a couple friends who are so content that they’ve found religion, Jesus Christ, whatever. I’m happy for them, i really am. However, when i see people that are closer to me (and similar to me) affected positively by this– it leaves me looking in the mirror thinking about myself and my own feelings about religion. So here it goes:
- I *REALLY* believe that there is a something “higher powered” that created us and is a higher being above us. Being an engineer, “more advanced” is the term that comes to my mind.
It really annoys me when humans become so arrogant that they think they understand everything. In a way, religious folks use god to get comfort in understanding the unknown. Instead of not knowing, God fills in the understanding of the things most fearful in life.
I’ve always felt that darkness is the lack of being enlightened to anything. What’s so bad/evil about that and why should people be afraid of not being enlightened about everything. Without darkness (or lack of knowledge,) there is no light, and needing to understand everything is Greed– and i think that’s evil. Call me the fucking devil…. but im ok with what i dont know for certain and i look forward to *maybe* knowing eventually. Enlightenment is life, as is darkness.
- I think that atheists are lame, and generally think it’s the biggest form of closed minded arrogance. How could you not think something is above you. I betcha ants dont believe in us either– because they likely are not capable of understanding us.
- That’s the thing….. I submit to the fact that just because I cant understand something completely first hand, doesnt mean it doesnt exist. My common sense tells me that it does…. and i respect that greatly. So, does that mean im religious?
Dictionary.com tells me that religion is:
re·li·gion /rɪˈlɪdʒən/ Pronunciation Key – Show Spelled Pronunciation[ri-lij-uhn] Pronunciation Key
||a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe
- Perhaps I am religious. However, I suppose that something i see as a difference is that my beliefs are MINE. Individually. I guess i mainly have a problem with organized religion, and specifically the leaders of the organizations thinking and acting as if they are god like. Yes, i’ve lived a life of questioning authority– but this authority gives me the creeps a lot of times…
- Throughout history, religion has been used as a means of establishing influence, power and control over people. It’s the roots of many wars, deaths, and discrimination. When i think of the word ‘religion’ in this way– I hate it. The basic ideas and principles of this form of religion have pretty much come from man, and power was built as a result of that.
- Historically, the Christians have been brutal beasts in their days of expansion….. now i think the growth of the Islamic faith isnt that different. I get so convinced that religious fundamentalism is the root of evil. Watch this as power and population continues to grow in the Muslim faith. Another repeat of Christian soldierism…. just the Muslim version. Yikes.
1) I submit to the fact that there are many things that i dont understand.
2) I absolutely believe there is a more powerful “being(s)” above me… a creator… sure.
3) I do not submit that any religious leader is above me. They are just human.
4) I dont feel guilty when i say that i dont easily accept blind absolutes.
4) I question everything, especially authorities and people who enjoy power & influence over others.
5) I seek to understand and to learn.
So… If God strikes me down with lightning, i suppose i’ll really be enlightened and it was good knowing you
By the way— i totally do not accept the bullshit that many folks can live a life of bad, then accept Jesus and instantly become forgiven and head straight to whatever heaven is. I just heard that bullshit in an older Jeffrey Dahmer interview from jail, where he was at such peace talking about cannibalising his victims. (NOTE: his ass was taken out by a fellow prisoner a few weeks after that interview… i consider that an act of gods will, and justice on his “enlightened” sorry ass.)
And, by the way— to the greedy religious folks who need a heaven that is better then what we have here….What if we’re living in a Twilight Zone episode of sorts, and this is heaven? What if, after death, there is no big party, pearly gates, or reunions with other dead loved ones? Just to be safe, i’d recommend valuing life, being good and appreciating every minute you have breathing.
Can you tell im confused ? Im both troubled and amused by it.
So…. I believe in “God” and i look forward to lthe opportunity to learnmore about that and everything going forward. It’s just not for some church and preacher to tell me about it– so, for now, just grab me a pepsi and i’ll figure it out myself.
December 17th, 2007
When I worked at AboveNet, we had a data center in NYC– so i was there quite a bit and really fell for this city. I love New York.
I’m so fortunate in life, as I have a great family, work for a company that treats me good, have great hobbies & passions and I have found extra time to go back to NYC….
Anissa and I leave early Friday morning for a weekend trip (by the way this started because i found a great buy 1 get 1 free deal on Virgin America Airlines.) We’re staying right by Times Square, and we’re also going to a Broadway show…
I’ve never been to a Broadway show and, hell, we never could afford those kinda things. I feel so fortunate, as I remember the times when Anissa and I were soooo poor back in the day. Being uneducated and with us starting from nothing, Im proud to say that hard work really pays off– and i appreciate the opportunities I had to prove myself and the people who gave me a shot. New York City, here we come…..
Tonight the boss from Yahoo invited the team over to his place for a holiday dinner and gift exchange party. I really work with a great group of folks, so it was cool. Food was excellent and we had a good time. I think we have a pretty damn good team…
Just thumbed through my friend Steve Caballero’s new book. It kicks ass. Maybe i’ll write about that in a future post, to give him his props.
Off to bed, so i can rise early to work out with Anissa (5:30am– and im sure as hell not a morning person, so it doesnt come easy.)
December 13th, 2007
OK, I found a place that im totally stoked on– it’s called TechShop. Basically it’s a fully equipped shop, with all the top tooling and machinery including: mills, lathes, cnc machines, plasma cnc, casting foundry, welders, full metal shop, etc. Totally bad ass. You join as a member and you can come in anytime 9am-midnight, 7 days a week to use the shop. They also have classes (so far i’ve taken the english wheel, shrinking/stretching, phlanishing hammer metal working class, and the gas welding class.)
I like this place both professionally and personally. At Yahoo we can use it to innovate new stuff (we fortunately get to invent and patent things quite a bit.) Personally, it helps my car/motorcycle projects greatly.
First project: I’m building a rear fender for my 1951 Norton Dominator….
December 13th, 2007
My friend got started on a new tattoo for my wifes back. He’s a bad ass artist, and Anissa is a bad ass hula dancer– so it was meant to be. This will be a longer term project, but even as a start is pretty amazing. Will post progress as shading and colors continue…
If you’re interested, this work was done by Khalil Rintye and he works at Tattoo City in San Francisco. http://www.tattoocitysf.com/
December 12th, 2007
So, i’ve been going to Mexico since I was a young teen, about age 15. Me and my buddys used to go down to drink, camp, surf and raise all kinds of hell and trouble. Some of the more notable stories:
1) Age 16– Naked hooker in a *scummy* Tijuana bar (way more scummy than you can wanna see, Turbo) that decided she needed to touch her naked “privates” and then swipe her finger across my face and partially into my mouth. That resulted in me exploding in anger, going nuts and being thrown out by about 3 machismos who guarded the joint.
2) Two mexican jail stories, but i’ll tell only one….. Me and Sean having to follow the cops on our ATVs out in the desert to the station. We thought they were going to shoot us out there and were almost ready to take off, when we saw it down the road. These jails are wonderful… dirt floors, etc. Nothing a little sweet talking, time and bribe can’t solve. The other story wasnt so pretty, so i’ll leave it at that.
3) Drugs are bad news in Mexico, and i hate them as well. It sucked when one of my friends got busted w/ coke going into the club on one of our trips. TMR to the rescue, and his ass is lucky he got out of that. (NOTE TO FRIEND: If you’re reading this, i love you like a brotha and hope you are still off that shit.)
4) How about the time stealing the clothes and money from the nice naked girls, who decided it would be cool to get naked, in the one of the clubs? If you were there, you remember that ass smacking sound? It takes skill to get that tone of smack…
5) How about the Russian hooker that made a sweet deal with my friends, and my wife got to see the whole deal making going on? That resulted in a “I know you’re just like your friends” speech from her, lol.
6) Ever heard of Adelita’s? I know somebody that knows about it real well, and he’d probably be pissed if i named him here. “Oh yeah baby! oh yeah! hurry up!”
7) How about that stripper that Mike named “Chaka.” That was a long time ago, huh?
The more i think, the more i realize that im a bit embarrassed on how many more stories there are… Perhaps im admitting them in this writing, to seek some sort of forgiveness or settling? Maybe so. What a bunch of fucking dirtbags TMR were. Luckily we’re all angels now, lol…
Anyway– it’s amazing what not drinking and having a family does to you. It turns you more civilized and human, and you realize that Mexico just isnt all about naked girls, hookers, partying and cops. It’s that plus some…
Here’s a pic of me and the family a couple weeks ago in Rosarito, at my favorite taco stand in town– Los Arcos. Good times and kick ass tacos…
Not sure why my daughter is trying to look all psycho and mean, but she had a good time too
My nephew, Brendan, got a new board down there for a good deal. He’s stoked….
Nope, no wild stories…… we flew into San Diego. drove the rental car down to Rosarito. Stayed at the Rosarito Beach Hotel in my timeshare (bought that like 10 years ago for nothing and it’s been great.) Got a couple massage with my wife. Ate at my favorite restaurant– El Nido– on the back patio by the fire (I recommend it.) Took a trip down to Puerto Nuevo the next day for Lobster on the ocean. Ran into some gunshots out on the street on a side trip to Tecate to look for tile. Bought some tile a bit south of town for our kitchen / nook area. Hell, even got good exercise with the wife and played a family game of basketball. Note to sister: Yes, i totally kicked your ass at HORSE– dont forget.
You see…. no more stories of sin, trouble and dispair. Good times, and i’m cool with that.
December 10th, 2007
I know this is late, but i screwed up my blog admin and just had the time to fix it– so better late than never….
Tis the season to never forget this important part of American history– the after effects of Pearl Harbors bombing:
In this post, i’m going to not focus so much on Dec 7th, 1941– the day the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor– but the day after. I think the visuals and fear of our homeland being bombed tends to be so dramatic that most people dont think too much about Dec 8th, the day after.
It was on December 8th, 1941 that our President, Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared war on the Japanese, via a very powerful speech– one that gives me the chills when i listen to it. It’s just got so much power, passion and resolve in it. Im not sure what the Japanese were thinking, but their action definately awoke the sleeping giant.
I like to think that this wasnt about oil, corporate greed or misguided politics. This was about kicking ass to stand for what’s right, preseve life safety for your family and a hope world peace.
Be sure to read and listen to the speech– i think you’ll enjoy it:
I have huge respect for the WWII generation and i believe they are the most impressive of all generations of settled Americans. Most of them survived through the Great Depression, where they learned to have without and work hard through a great struggle. They learned to appreciate the value of having what they had– and they were willing to do whatever it took to keep it. The Japanese were screwed the moment they dropped the first bomb.
Speaking of the Japanese– you have to respect their WWII generation as well. They fought as warriors and gave everything for their families and their countries. I’d say they were an honorable opponent.
Two years ago, I had the honor of visiting the Pearl Harbor memorial and it was very emotional for me. Was lucky enough to see a couple old timer WWII vets also visiting at the same time. Sad to think that they’ll all be gone soon, as time passes.
I’ll never forget Pearl Harbor, and the right actions we took because of it. And, oh, by the way…. I’ll never forget 9/11 and my belief that our country used us and our feelings those disasters to justify a war in Iraq that had nothing to do with the bombings on our home land. What ever happened to that Osama guy anyway?
Speaking of Osama….. Im liking him for president…. oops, i mean Obama– you know the dude who is like a black Kennedy image. Really though, it’s looking like that’s who i’d like to vote for. We’ll see how it goes…
December 10th, 2007