Monday, June 30, 2008

Land of Quakes and Flakes

Only in California

Can you hear me now?: July 1, 2008, a day in California that will live in infamy. Ok, so it won’t live in infamy, but today is the first day of the rest of your life to talk and not hold the phone while driving legally. There is no law in California against putting on lipstick, Chapstick, chaps, riding a broomstick, changing the radio station, arguing with your significant other or “partner,” (remember, this is California), yawning, eating dinner, petting your pet Shetland pony, or lighting a cigar, cigarette, or Tiparillo while driving. There is not even a law against talking on your cell phone while driving, provided the phone is operated hands free. And despite the fact that no statistical evidence exists to suggest that talking on the cell phone while driving is any safer if you are using a hands-free device, the law requires drivers who talk and drive to do so using a hands-free device. The only safe way to talk and drive is to quote the Governator: “I’ve got to go now but I’ll be back.”

Raiders of the Lost Brim: Indiana Jones wore one. So did Ole’ Blue Eyes. That’s Frank Sinatra to those of you not of a certain age. Who is Frank Sinatra? Let’s just say he’s not one of the Beach Boys. It is a fedora – a hat with a brim designed to keep the sun out of your eyes. The fedora is different from the traditional baseball cap in that it does not look cool worn backwards. But it does look cool, according to LA fashion plates. However, the new fedora, like the glitzy models of Rodeo drive, exude “thin is in.” A thin brim, that is. Thin brim fedoras, called stingy brims, have become the “in” thing to wear among the cool cat actor/musician/baby daddy set according to the LA Times. Looks like this season the hot hat with the thin brim is cool.

Can you see me now?: Believe it or not, everything that happens in California does not happen south of Fresno. Northern California has its share of news these days – mostly hot and smoky. Those wildfires, some 1500 of them are still burning in and around the Bay area and fire season is months away. Rolling thunder and lightning strikes have started many of the fires and rolling smoke and particulate-laden air has blanketed the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. I spoke to my good friend, Geno in Pleasanton over the weekend and he reports that the fires pose no immediate danger but the air quality resembles Pittsburgh in the early 1900s. The smoke has raced up I-80 past Sacramento to Reno. Firemen in Big Sur are hoping fog will to them get a handle on the inferno that has blackened nearly 570 square miles. Oh, what they wouldn’t give for some of the Midwest rains!

Adam and Eve, make room for Adam and Steve: The recent California Supreme Court ruling that struck down anti-gay marriage laws in California might be a financial boon to the state. The original rush to the alter has subsided and the hair stylists have gone back to their cubicles. California did not fall into the ocean – although I’m certain some radical religious nuts will draw a parallel between the symbolism of the fires of Hell mentioned above, and the legality of gay marriages. Wedding planners, florists, bakeries, and all the wedding support businesses are happy to see business on the rise. It is a great topic for late night TV comedians but in point of fact many gay and lesbian couples have lived “normal” heterosexual type lifestyles for generations. Some have children, either as the result of divorce, adoption of surrogate, and every bit of research suggests no significant difference in gender preference or any other behavior between children of gay parent families and those of hetero parents.

Rowdy teens cause problems at drug party: NOT! A weekend rave was scheduled at the L.A. Coliseum last weekend and 60,000 showed up. The Electric Daisy Carnival lasted until 4 a.m. and the kids, well, danced their ass off. One youth was arrested for an altercation and another for drunken driving. That was it! There would have been more trouble if 60,000 people had shown up for a tent revival. Somebody was one heck of an organizer. We’re always happy to end the blog on a happy note.

A little blogging music Maestro... “California Dreamin” by the Mamas and Papas.

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