Porn is where you find it (or where a city will provide it in a library) #16!

I do not have the entire story, and I do not know how explicit the “porn” was in this library.  I just saw the headline as I worked out on the cardio machine at my gym. 

How bad do you need to get your perv on if you are getting it at a public library?


We slowly climb back to life: Costco trip from Super Bowl Week


You can’t deny that the probability of this being invented by a woman is rather high.

What’s next?  A luxury sports car without the luxury?

I wonder who broke the bad news to Ruth…

Perhaps it is a blessing that there are being marketed to appeal to children.  Otherwise, God knows how hostile a work environment could get!

W T F ???

Made for people who really enjoy cutting loose with their fruit.

I would say no, they did not import this from the Castro in San Francisco… nor do I believe that any kind of fruit has super powers.

Rest in Peace Angelo Dundee

Angelo Dundee standing behind the most famous fighter he trained. He was in Ali's corner for all but two fights.

I hoped that one day I would meet Angelo Dundee.  I always heard that he told great stories about his career in boxing.  I kept telling myself that of all the sports people I could ever meet, I wanted it to be Angelo Dundee.  He was described with nothing but kind words, he was said to be one of the kindest souls in a sport that was so brutal and violent.  Angelo Dundee has passed away Wednesday night at the age of 90.

Angelo Dundee is in the Boxing Hall of Fame for his work as a trainer.  If you are not a sports fan, you still probably know who Muhammad Ali is.  Angelo was the trainer for all but two of Ali’s fights.  He also trained many other boxers in a career that spanned seven decades.

I am very sad today.  I guess I will have to wait until the afterlife to meet Mr. Dundee.  I look forward to hearing his stories.

Allow me to make it up to my friends who are not Sports Fans.

I was a bit of a bully with my last post.  It was way out of line, and it also proves that I am no poet.

This Sunday the San Francisco 49’ers have a chance to return to the Super Bowl for the first time since 1995.  The last time the Niners played in a Super Bowl I was not old enough to buy beer legally, and I had  only known my good friend Mr. Pat for five months.  So now people up and down the North Coast are excited about the potential return to greatness the Niners have at their hands.

So to my dear friends who have little interest or need for sports… you no doubt will end up in a situation in the next two weeks where you are confronted by a group of wild sports fans who will be talking the Football talk.

You wanna mess up their minds a little, and drop some sports knowledge on them that will knock them off their feet?  Nothing like showing up the loud mouth who thinks he knows EVERYTHING about football.

OK, so here is the background:  The National Football league splits its teams into two conferences with 16 teams apiece.  The American Football Conference, and the National Football Conference.  The San Francisco 49ers play in the National Football Conference.  The Super Bowl will be played between the winner of the American Football Conference and the winner of the National Football Conference  in about two weeks.

Now:  In the 17 years since the last time the 49ers reached the Super Bowl, the National Football Conference has sent all but two teams to the Super Bowl.  In 17 years 14 teams have represented the National Football Conference in the Super Bowl.  Only two teams in the conference have failed to reach a Super Bowl in that time.

Wanna bet your loud mouth sports moop can’t name the two teams?  Well, you will be able to…

The Detroit Lions (who have never been to a Super Bowl ever) and The Washington Redskins (oye ve)

I look forward to hearing about how you “Non-Sports Fan” clowned some beer belly super fan with a quick jab of trivia!

A rebuttal from a football fan; done in poem…

There will come a day

When TV networks will fight for the rights

So that arts and crafters will do their thing

On their Super Station

Sponsors will flock with open wallets

Living rooms filled with snacks and liquor

People watching with bated breath

Crochet with burlap is so divine

You really want mind boggling:

Currently there are 4 networks that pay approximately 20 BILLION dollars for the right to broadcast football games on TV; and that is just for the professional ones!  College football is another kingdom all to itself.

Starting in 2014 and for eight years after that, the same four TV networks will shell out 40 BILLION dollars for professional games.  They would not be doing that just because the money in their wallets is causing their skin to break out in hives.  It is the fans!

Long live sporting events!

*This is a brief editorial rebuttal to a comment I read on Facebook this morning.  I am a proud to be a consumer of sporting events on television.  I am not a fanatic, but I enjoy a good sporting match.

At long last… my vacation in pictures. I am home? Am I?

I finally get a chance to write a quick note about my recent trip back to my hometown.  I am not much of the sentimental type when I visit the place I grew up.  Let’s face it; I fell off the face of the planet when I moved away after graduating from high school.  So often during my stay in So Cal I felt like a tourist.  This trip was no different in that regard, but I must say that my time spent with my family had a profound effect on me.

I came back and I realize how much I miss spending time with my brothers.  I miss going to my mom’s place to stuff my pie hole with homemade food.  I came home with a few dozen homemade tamales by the way.  By this time I am supposed to be glad to be back to my life up here, but something is different this time.  I am still thinking about what is going on down there, and how things might be if I was there too.  I bonded with my nieces and nephews, and I feel like I am missing out on something being so far away.  I met Fredo’s grandson.  He is the so cute, and has a perpetual smile on his face.  I am left now with a mixed bag of thoughts in my mind.

My brother Fredo has two young children that my mom gets to see on a regular basis.  My mom loves being a grandma, and seeing my niece’s wall of art was pretty cool.  I especially like the snoopy stuff.  Of course, I am kind of bias.

My mom also uses her grandkids for basic child labor.  I like how the two kids work together so well.

My brother Steve and I made pigs of ourselves on sausage and cheese and watched Laker games like two bums.  Vacations are great!

I miss the fact that in many yards there are citrus trees.  I remember the days of not having to pay for oranges, lemons, and avocados.

An unusual window I passed on day while walking through downtown.

I did some hiking into the hills above Ojai, CA.  The views were terrific.

Just like so many Ventura County hiking trails, I had to traverse through some kind of orchard to get to the wild hills.  There was an avocado ranch I passed by.

The greatest sight I saw on any of my hikes was at my feet.  It had been years since I have seen a rattlesnake in the wild.  He was just laying out getting some sun.  The unusually warm weather must have fooled him into thinking it was time to come out and check things out.

I even convinced my nephew to hit the trail with me.  We both saw this view from the top of hill we climbed… also in Ojai.

One morning I woke up to fog.  Any chance I missed Humboldt was gone when I stepped out in this soup.

At this beach the fog rolled in late in the afternoon, and spoiled many people’s frolic in the water.

While I was hanging out with my mom, she dragged me to a Death Star… aka “that place”

I took in a sunset in Ventura.

The pier

The Channel Islands in the horizon

Red skies

Oh the food.  One day at lunch with Fredo and his son Jonathan, I had a Monte Cristo sandwich… or at least an interpretation of it.  It was still yummy!  Of course I spent most of my time eating homemade food at my mom’s house, and at Steve’s.

…and what trip would be complete without returning with Snoopy and Peanuts collectables?

Interesting books

Buttons, bookmark, a patch, and a pin

Stationary and a little plaque

This is cool.  Many thanks to my brother Steve and Sister Vivian for finding this cool stuff for me!

The Intersection of Harvard Blvd. and 12th ST.

My trips back to Santa Paula are far and few between.  If I am lucky I make it home at least one time a year to see my family.  There are times it is not easy negotiating the politics of a family that is often at conflict for one reason or another, but I find a way because I love them all.  As with many families, we all have issues in our lives that range from medical and children, to financial and employment.  When I had to scramble to purchase a car last month, I again found myself in a stressful place not unlike many of my other siblings. 

So as I still find my way through my money troubles, the pilgrimage home has led me to the corner of Harvard Blvd. and 12th street in Santa Paula.  This intersection is not unlike any other in the city, but it has become a symbol for me and some of my siblings.  This place is a symbol of what was and what could have been.

At one time this land in and around this intersection was owned by mother’s family.  My mom says their land went two blocks north, two blocks west, two blocks south.  My mom’s family thrived during the depression because they had chickens, pigs, and a garden flush with veggies and fruit.  My mom’s parents survived the collapse and subsequent flood of the St. Francis dam in 1928.  On May 12th, 1928, exactly one month after the dam failed, my mom’s brother was born.   As the oldest, he would come to inherit the modest parcel of land my maternal grandparents worked so hard to make productive.

I loved my uncle.  By the time I was old enough to know him, he was renting a room in a house he shared with several field workers.  He was nearing retirement age and working at a local tile shop in town.  He was never married, had no children, and his longtime girlfriend had died of cancer.  The man I knew was full of stories that were amusing and often true.  My uncle was beloved by so many people in the community.  He was also a recovering alcoholic who was slowly dying from the medical effects of his lifelong affliction.  He went to his grave with several demons he could never reconcile in himself while he was alive. 

When my mom’s parents passed away my uncle was sole heir of the land and the modest family estate.  I have heard stories of buses he chartered from Santa Paula to Las Vegas, and of lots of drinks paid for by my generous uncle.  My uncle became a genuine life of the party, and who lived for the moment.  To say he squandered a small family fortune would be the Cliff Notes version.  After spending lots of inherited money, and losing the land, my Uncle was no longer able to pay for the parties.  His only legacy was that he was remembered fondly by so many, and the standing room only memorial service at his death was a tribute to this.

Eventually part of the land was bought by the state to build highway 126.  The overpass in the picture is the freeway crossing 12th street.  Who is to say that my mom would not have been the life of the party herself?  Perhaps if she would have had part of the estate to herself she would have saved some of it from being squandered.  The world will never know just how my mom would have managed her parent’s estate.  Instead her children, myself one of them, can only wonder how different things might have been if my uncle had not been allowed to lose our family’s land. 

These days we can only imagine what this place would look like if we had held onto the land.  Would there be a restaurant and a nightclub within a block of each other?  I am sure as the city of Santa Paula crept eastward, the land would have been sold for the right price.  To think my family once owned Southern California real estate makes my stomach turn in knots.  My maternal grandparents had two children, and my mom had the misfortune of being born second.  To my mom’s credit, she has never expressed remorse about the way her brother mismanaged everything.  In fact, she was not the one who told me about what happened.   I guess raising a family and becoming a bread winner left little time for her to look back and dwell.  Yet one more reason my mom is my hero.  

As I end this post, I will leave with two thoughts.  First, it was two years ago when my brother Fredo and I were discussing the status of our family.  As we talked about who was mad at who, and what events had transpired he brought up some trouble he was having.  He then brought up the intersection of Harvard Blvd. and 12th street.  He could not help but wonder how things might be different for all of us had that land not been squandered away.  Earlier this year a buddy of mine was dealing with his feelings after having watched his father sell a classic car that had been in his family for over 40 years.  As he told me the story, I searched for the words to console him.  All I could do was tell him about the intersection of Harvard Blvd. and 12th street.