Thursday, August 28, 2008

Jewel City Photo: Trailer of People

It took me a minute to figure out this apparently gruesome tableaux as I approached from a distance.

The figures are actually mannequin "extras" being used in a Chrysler commercial. I have no idea how they were actually staged during filming (I initially thought they might have been used as an audience for something filming at the Alex), but a fake street cafe and newstand was set up on Milford between Brand and Maryland. I found a call sheet on the ground that only called for 10 flesh and blood extras. Did anyone see the actual filming? How were these guys used?

Keep your eyes open for a Chrysler commercial shot in downtown Glendale. Here are some more pictures taken by my co-pilot as we drove past:

Summer Bruschetta

As a palate cleanser to the previous post about In-N-Out's animal-style french fries, here is a simple summer dish that Anne has made for dinner twice this week:

And she's been making it using homemade bread and homegrown tomatoes and basil. Yum!

Americana Lawn: Still Closed; Dead

The lawn at The Americana is still disappointingly closed on weekdays. The lawn has not coped well with the stages set up for the recent series of concerts. Was there a similar situation with the grass at The Grove or is this unique?

Animal Style Fries

Just in case you were wondering, it is possible to order your fries at In N' Out "animal style". I can't really recommend it...but it is possible.

Dolci Mango Frozen Yogurt Now Priced By Weight

Dolci Mango, which recently re-opened under new ownership, has gone to a self-serve weight-based pricing structure. You grab a cup, put as much yogurt as you want into it, load up as many toppings as you want, and pay 37 cents an ounce for the result. It's pretty good! If, like me, you like to sample various toppings and flavors its a much better deal than Pinkberry. They also have about 11 flavors available.

Amazingly, the storefront two or three spaces south of Dolci Mango is getting ready to another frozen yogurt shop! Note confused bystanders.

Glendale Pedestrians Lack Common Sense

A major reason for Glendale's appalling pedestrian injury and fatality rates was illustrated on my brief bike ride home tonight. Glendale's pedestrians are RECKLESS, particularly the elderly!

On Maryland between Broadway and Harvard, three teenagers walked into the middle of the street without a glance towards oncoming traffic. I was on my (very quiet) bike, so I dinged my bell and managed to dart around them.

As I waited at the red light at Harvard and Maryland, a very elderly couple walked up to the crosswalk which had been displaying a blinking red hand for some time and started hobbling across the intersection. A few seconds after they entered the intersection, the light changed, and they still were only 1/3 of the way through the crosswalk, which stalled traffic in the left hand turn lane on Harvard.

Then at Harvard and Louise, a very old man started hobbling across the crosswalk well into the flashing red hand. He made it halfway through the crosswalk, saw the light turn yellow, and decided to turn around and walk back to the side where he had started. So he stopped and reversed directions in the crosswalk without looking towards oncoming traffic, and put himself right in my path as I was making a right onto Louise. I braked and narrowly missed him.

All of this pedestrian madness took place within two blocks over a period of 50 seconds or so. Pay attention, people!

Drivers certainly need to slow down too. Look at what happened tonight in Eagle Rock: 3 dead and 2 seriously injured when a car slammed into a tree on Colorado Boulevard. Senseless.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Glendale Transient Arrested In Connection With Griffith Park Fires

My friend Michael just sent me this story in the LA Times:
Gary Allen Lintz was spotted by hikers leaving an area near Griffith Park Drive where a slow-moving brush fire broke out shortly after 2 p.m. Saturday, said John Miller, battalion chief for the arson and counter-terrorism unit of the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Undercover arson investigators then observed Lintz riding in a group of bicyclists and stopped him for questioning, Miller said. Lintz stood out because he was not dressed in racing apparel.

"He didn't fit in with the other bicyclers," Miller said.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

The Nose Knows

From a police report in the Burbank Leader:
100 block of Alameda Avenue: CVS Pharmacy called police after two men stole several hundreds of dollars in cologne from the store. The men escaped before police arrived on Thursday.
Sounds like a case for a scent-tracking police dog.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Dear Ventilation Duct Delivery Truck...

You can pick up your ducts at Riverside and Alameda, in front of Disney. ABC7 (based just down the street in Glendale) arrived well before any traffic control.

Cats Are The Enemy

Spotted this PSA while walking to Cost Plus the other day. What's the takeaway message? That cats are evil?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Glendale Painting/Photography Opening Reception 8/21

FastFrame of Glendale is having an opening reception tonight for a show featuring Glendale-oriented artwork and photography from Stephen Coleman and Vincent Takas.

The show is August 21st from 6 - 9 p.m.

FastFrame of Glendale is located at 112 N. Brand Blvd.

More info here.

Glendale Mexican Food

This week I've taken a friend from the UK (who had never had Mexican food before) on a local Mexican food journey, from the cheese-laden Mexican comfort food of Don Cuco's to the overstuffed fish tacos at Senor Fish and the small, intensely tasty tacos at Tacos El Sauz in southwest Glendale.

For the record, I never go to Don Cuco's of my own free will.

If I'm in charge, I head to La Cabanita in Montrose for sit-down Mexican. Senor Fish is one of my favorite local spots, and I make a point of stopping by whenever I'm over in Eagle Rock. I live near Tacos El Sauz and have been meaning to try it ever since I moved in. I ordered a sampler plate of al pastor, carne asada and pollo tacos (carnitas was mysteriously absent from the menu), washed them down with a horchata and was immensely satisfied. The carne asada was particular good.

Downtown Glendale is especially deficient in Mexican cuisine...I haven't spotted much life beyond Don Cuco's and Chuy's, which makes Don Cuco's look like fine dining. Are there any good Mexican places in Glendale that I've missed?

New Bus Shelters Installed On Brand

New bus shelters have been installed around Glendale at no charge to the city. They were installed and will be maintained by CBS Outdoor in exchange for the right to sell advertising on them. They look nice, but one problem: some of them don't provide much shade! Shelters installed on Central have an opaque roof. The new shelters installed on Brand have a greenhouse-like clear glass roof.

Marshalls And HomeGoods Opening Downtown

Marshall's Shoe Megashop and a HomeGoods home furnishings store are opening up in the former Tower Records space in the Glendale Marketplace. With the closing of Linens & Things, it's good to see businesses opening in the beleagured Glendale Marketplace development, especially in the huge Tower Records/CompUSA space which has been vacant for well over a year.

Dolci Mango Re-Opens!

The Dolci Mango frozen yogurt shop on Brand has re-opened! It briefly closed last week for a change in ownership.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Lunchtime Tour Of Forest Lawn

My co-workers and I broke out of our pleasant downtown lunch groove today (Porto's, Teriyaki Me, Angela's) and drove to Forest Lawn for a quick tour.

We checked out the very fun new tiki exhibit, the world's largest oil painting, and then were kicked out of Walt Disney's grave site by security.

I took these pictures of downtown Glendale with some rather strange clouds.

We finished the afternoon with tarna wraps at Zankou.

Bar FN: Say It Out Loud

Bar FN. Say it out loud.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Two Glendale Mentions In The L.A. Times

I was going to post about two Glendale mentions in the LA Times this morning but was beaten to the punch by Patty at her excellent Eating L.A. blog.

The first mention in The Times was a very favorable review of Palate, the new restaurant and wine store on Brand. Anne and I had an excellent meal there shortly after they opened.

From the review:
"With a short, seasonal menu, nothing over $20, and a killer wine list and cheese selection, Palate lives up to its full name in a big way. For food and wine lovers, Glendale just became a destination."
The second Glendale mention was in a corporate profile of Panda Express. It turns out that the Glendale Galleria was the site of the first Panda Express, which was derived from the Panda Inn restaurant in Pasadena. Who knew? Sadly, my first exposure to Chinese food was at the Panda Express at Fedco on LaCienega. Downtown Glendale also has a Panda Inn, though I would definitely recommend Fortune Inn at Broadway/Maryland before Panda.

Filming On Brand

Tonight there was some interesting filming activity on Brand in front of The Alex and Far Niente. I had to stumble through the scene to get by and saw a handful of spectacularly dressed mariachi -- and then came face to face with a large black horse! You can see a man on horseback in the pictures below.

An unhelpful crew member just said they were filming a "television commercial". My snappy (mental) response, which I thought of halfway down the block, was "But I already have a television!"

Last Wednesday there was filming all day on Maryland between Wilson and Broadway. That was for the lamest of all possible projects even remotely related to the "entertainment industry" - a Ross Dress For Less commercial.

Keep your eyes open for Glendale in the final ads: Maryland Avenue in a Ross commercial, and a group of mariachi and a man on a black horse on Brand.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

The View From Scholl Canyon

I played golf at Scholl Canyon for the first time yesterday. The course itself is beautiful, despite being on top of a landfill. Several of the holes require a clean shot over a ravine to get onto the green, so if you're a newbie like me, you definitely want to bring along a bunch of cheap sacrificial balls. The views of L.A. and Glendale from the course are amazing. Yesterday we had a nice breeze and could see all the way to the ocean. I could even just make out the outline of Catalina in the distance. I highly recommend a visit, especially on a clear day.

Village French Bakery

Today Anne and I met friends for coffee and treats at Village French Bakery in Kenneth Village, which I had never been to before. Our cappuccino and cafe au lait were excellent. Here are the treats that we bought for $3.

We also took home a very good baguette. I'm not in Kenneth Village that often, but I'll definitely be back to try the almond croissant, which looked amazing.

Village French Bakery
1414 W Kenneth Rd
Glendale, CA 91201
(818) 241-2521

Dolci Mango Closes

The perpetually empty Dolci Mango yogurt place on Brand is finally calling it quits. The sign on the door says "Temporarily closed due to change in ownership", but I will be shocked if it reopens as a froyo shop. I'm guessing the opening of Pinkberry across the street at the Americana finally pushed it over the edge.

*Update: I stand corrected! It has re-opened with a snazzy new weight-based pricing system.

Last Chance For Linen's 'N Things

Everything at the doomed Linen's 'N Things above the Glendale Marketplace is now at least half off. The store is closing for good on the 18th. Most of the remaining inventory consists of novelty items such a hollow football that holds chips and plays the "NFL Tonight!" theme when opened, but there are still some deals to be had on towels, bedding and cookware.

Free Movies In Kenneth Village

While walking through Kenneth Village after working at the Doctors' House today I saw this sign for free outdoor family movies in Kenneth Village during the month of September. Here is the official website.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Um, Don't Try To Pet Mountain Lion Cubs

A relatively minor mountain lion "attack" was reported Wednesday at Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park in Orange County. From the LA Times:
Lassiter told authorities that he was hiking and came across a female lion and three cubs that he estimated were about 8 weeks old. "He said they seemed so cute and cuddly and passive," Amormino said.

When he went to pet one of the cubs, Lassiter told authorities, the mother lunged at him -- and then ran off.
The hiker received some scratches on his arm. Sounds like the mountain lion gave him a pretty fair deal.

I've been fascinated by mountain lions since my brief encounter with two mountain lions in Yosemite this April.

Here is a what you SHOULD do if you cross paths with a mountain lion.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Breakfast At Angela's

This week I finally tried breakfast at Angela's Bistro. I ordered the french toast special with eggs, bacon and a small coffee. The food was very good, particularly the soft, buttery french toast. My dining companion had the oatmeal with slivered almonds. The grand total for my order came out to $6.61 with tax, which is eminently reasonable. The cafe is a pleasant place to sit, with a nice view of Wilson and Brand from the window.

French toast breakfast special.

Oatmeal with slivered almonds, $2.00.

112 E Wilson Ave
Glendale, CA 91206
(818) 240-0382

I haven't found many good breakfasts in downtown Glendale. Urartu Coffee on Maryland serves a good croissant breakfast sandwich called the Urartu omelette. Foxy's is good for a diner breakfast, but gets crazy crowded on weekends. I've always been disappointed at Eat Well. Any downtown breakfast recommendations?

More Downtown Bees

Today I noticed Downtown Glendale's notorious swarm of bees on the roof of the Way To Happiness Foundation building at Maryland & Broadway. In this photo you can see the bees swarming in the dark-colored seam. Walking up Maryland I saw the bees swarming at another seam on the opposite side of the building. Perhaps there's a large void up there that is completely filled with millions of bees. I'll start to worry when it starts raining honey on Maryland.

The bee-filled seam is visible in the top right-hand corner of this photo.

Swarm Of Bees Spotted Downtown Again
Bee Industrious

Fireworks At The Hollywood Bowl

Here are the fireworks from the finale of Saturday night's Eric Idle show at the Hollywood Bowl. The show was fun, but we carpooled with friends and parking was grueling. Next time, we'll definitely take the $3 shuttle from the Zoo parking lot in Griffith Park.