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Southern California Photography by Alan Pavlik, editor and publisher of Just Above Sunset
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Photos and text, unless otherwise noted, Copyright 2006 - Alan M. Pavlik

If you use any of these photos for commercial purposes I assume you'll discuss that with me

These were shot with a Nikon D70 - using lens (1) AF-S Nikkor 18-70 mm 1:35-4.5G ED, or (2) AF Nikkor 70-300mm telephoto, or after 5 June 2006, (3) AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor, 55-200 mm f/4-5.6G ED. They were modified for web posting using Adobe Photoshop 7.0

The original large-format raw files are available upon request.

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Visitors from February 28, 2006, 10:00 am Pacific Time to date -


Sunday, 24 September 2006
Things To Do On A Sunday Afternoon In Hollywood
Topic: Unusual Events
Things To Do On A Sunday Afternoon In Hollywood

1938 Peugeot 402 Eclipse DeCapotableSunday in Hollywood - slept in, as production of the weekly magazine-format Just Above Sunset ran late. So it was lots of black coffee and plowing through the Sunday Los Angeles Times, run a few errands, and then walk down the hill for a photo shoot.

Downhill - a few steps down to Sunset Boulevard, one block down to Franklin, and one block down to Santa Monica Boulevard. That's Historic Route 66 - just like in the 1946 Booby Troop song - get your kicks on Route 66 and all that. There's a sign that says so - "Historic Route 66" - just so you know.

The day's kicks were a few blocks west at Barneys Beanery - the Second Annual Route 66 Highway of Dreams Charity Car Show - ninety vintage cars and celebrity classics, exhibits, food, festivities and a car competition, as they promised. George Barris - the "Kustom King" - was this year's Honorary Chairmen, but I missed him. No matter - I've covered his cars before, twice actually.

And I've photographed and commented on Barneys Beanery before (see the last photo on this page) - on October 4, 1970, Janis Joplin sat at her favorite booth, thirty-four, and downed two screwdrivers before heading up to the Landmark Hotel (gone now). She died there later that evening.

But the cars were great - took a hundred shots and the best will appear in next Sunday's weekly. There was a very cool 1938 Peugeot 402 Eclipse DeCapotable with a retractable hardtop - just like the little Benz SLK I used to own (not really). It won Best in Show. The European machines were impressive - a pristine 1956 Benz 300SL Gull Wing Coupe (very red), a perfect 1954 Jaguar XK120 Fixed Head Coupe (egg shaped and egg white), and there were the two blonds in the 1963 Ferrari 250 GTO - but the Ferrari turned out to be a reproduction, built on a Datsun 240Z with Ferrari parts. Well, the girls were trying their best to do the Paris Hilton thing, but that wasn't working out either. The American machines were great - old Packard monsters and custom rods and all. There was even a 1962 Amphicar - the little convertible your drive into the water and then use as a boat. It was turquoise and the twin propellers under the rear bumper were white. Cute.

But there was the Janis Joplin vibe, and the best cars were parked in the shade under Emser Tile - the building used in Lethal Weapon for the scene where the businessman wants to commit suicide and Mel Gibson goes all crazy and jumps off the roof with him. They're handcuffed together. Yipes. I walked home to my place, a few doors from where F. Scott Fitzgerald drank himself to death while working on The Last Tycoon. It was his birthday. It seemed best to hide and process the photos.

Here are some of them, starting with the Peugeot, followed by the 1956 Benz 300SL Gull Wing Coupe, then the 1954 Jaguar XK120 Fixed Head Coupe.

1938 Peugeot 402 Eclipse DeCapotable

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 1956 Benz 300SL Gull Wing Coupe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1954 Jaguar XK120 Fixed Head Coupe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1954 Jaguar XK120 Fixed Head Coupe


Posted by Alan at 8:45 PM PDT | Post Comment | Permalink
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Updated: Sunday, 24 September 2006 8:49 PM PDT
Tuesday, 1 August 2006
More Kites
Topic: Unusual Events
More Kites
This is a supplement to the previous item, The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite - Redondo Beach at the pier there, Sunday, July 30. The link above covers the basics of the event, with a lot of items you can click for even more information, and has nine photos. One reader requested more kites - he seems to need a bit more relief in this weary world - so here they are.

Arrive at the pier around one, find a place to park (not easy), grab the camera bag and head over to the crowd, and there are these guys doing dual acrobatics, or kite dancing, to something loud being pumped in - new age meets techno. They were having a blast, the two kits bobbing and whipping around together. The crowd cheered, but getting it right would require video, with sound. This will have to do.

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite - Redondo Beach at the pier, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The rest was just kites (the third is very mysterious) -

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite - Redondo Beach at the pier, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite - Redondo Beach at the pier, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite - Redondo Beach at the pier, Sunday, July 30, 2006


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite - Redondo Beach at the pier, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Air traffic (the Cessna 172 is pulling a banner promoting the local comedy club) -

 

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite - Redondo Beach at the pier, Sunday, July 30, 2006 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Wind power -

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite - Redondo Beach at the pier, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite - Redondo Beach at the pier, Sunday, July 30, 2006


Posted by Alan at 7:02 PM PDT | Post Comment | Permalink
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Updated: Tuesday, 1 August 2006 7:14 PM PDT
Sunday, 30 July 2006
The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite
Topic: Unusual Events
The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite
The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite, Redondo Beach, California, Sunday, July 30, 2006Thursdays the Los Angeles Times publishes the weekend guide to what's up out here, and on July 27 there was this -
You don't have to be serious about kites to feel as if you have the world on a string.

Thousands for whom the airborne wonders are a flight of fancy will join scores who have made kites a lifelong passion on Sunday at the 32nd annual Festival of the Kite, with the skies around the Redondo Beach Pier promising to turn into a montage of brightly hued objects of all shapes and sizes.
The silly prose is from one Sondra Farrell Bazrod, - who also quotes Burt the Chimney Sweep from "Mary Poppins" - but she quotes even sillier words from Mel Hickman, who is Executive Director of the American Kitefliers Association (yes, there is such an organization) -
Kites are more popular than at any time in history, and festivals are growing around the world. It's a great hobby and is inexpensive, and kites are easy to make and teach the maker about the physical world.

The best thing is that you don't care what color a person is or of what political party or gay or straight. The wind either blows for you or it doesn't, and there's nothing you can do about who you are that can change that. It's a very "communizing" factor, and so kite fliers tend to be a lot less caught up in themselves than maybe other groups. It's also a great tension reliever to stand there with a kite and watch it play with the clouds. If you're near the water when you fly your kite into a setting sun it's almost mystical.
Ah, world peace and universal brotherhood (or sisterhood or whatever) would be at hand if everyone just went to the beach and flew kites. Or so says this fifty-five-year-old man who heads an organization four thousand strong. One wonders what his day job is. Well, this is California.

The Redondo Beach event is a showcase for Tom Fine, a man in his mid-forties, who has owned Sunshine Kites on the pier for ten years now. Sunshine Kites sponsors the festival. Fine once built a kite twenty-five feet wide and sixteen feet tall, so you know he's serious about this kite stuff. California is full of alternative careers choices. But then Benjamin Franklin and the Wright brothers did work with kites that led to all sorts of things. Perhaps one shouldn't scoff.

Bazrod also cites clinical psychologist Sidney Walter -
For adults, kite flying is an expression of freedom from the grounded mundane life experiences. For children it's the same idea of freedom from control of their immediate environment. Kids can control with strings. All flying, especially the kite, is an expression of freedom and complete abandonment of earthly things.

For a time I dated clinical psychologist. They don't talk like that in real life. That's just how they talk to reporters from the Times.

The trip from Hollywood to the Redondo Beach Pier is a tad over twenty-one miles, but those are hard miles - either on the crazy-making 110 Freeway right through the heart of the city, or on the 405 past Los Angeles International Airport with all the befuddled travelers trying to figure out how to return their rental cars, or on surface streets though some really seedy parts of Los Angeles - but Sunday, July 30, catching a kite festival seemed to be a fine idea.

The festival site is here, and there's Mel Hickman's American Kitefliers Association and the Ventura County Kite Flyers and the Up Up & Away Kite Club down in Seal Beach. Who knew? And the Times lists five thriving kite stores - the one on the pier in Redondo Beach, and other stores in Huntington Beach, Newport Beach, Seal Beach and Dana Point. It's an industry.

Here are some shots from the festival. There will by a full array in next Sunday's issue of Just Above Sunset.

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite, Redondo Beach, California, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite, Redondo Beach, California, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite, Redondo Beach, California, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 




































The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite, Redondo Beach, California, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite, Redondo Beach, California, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite, Redondo Beach, California, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite, Redondo Beach, California, Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Thirty-Second Annual Festival of the Kite, Redondo Beach, California, Sunday, July 30, 2006


Posted by Alan at 10:05 PM PDT | Post Comment | Permalink
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Updated: Sunday, 30 July 2006 10:40 PM PDT
Sunday, 16 July 2006
Bastille Day, Los Angeles
Topic: Unusual Events
Bastille Day, Los Angeles

We all know that Philippe Larrieu, Counsel General of France in Los Angeles, and city councilman Tom LaBonge (his real name, actually), mean well, but this year's Bastille Day Los Angeles, down on the grounds of the Page Museum and next to the La Brea Tar Pits, was a bust.  It wasn't so much that it was one hundred degrees in the shade - and there wasn't much of that - or that the nearby tar pits made the whole place smell like hot asphalt.  It just wasn't very French. 

Our Paris-born friend of many long years said something was missing.  She was right.  The booths were mostly local American outfits, offering "French-like" doodads, or just the usual junk.  Oh there were a few Tahiti tourist tables, TV5 that provides French language broadcasting out here, some Moroccan food stands, and the local pétanque folks with a small area for boules (probably not sanctioned the Fédération Française de Pétanque et Jeu Provençal).  There was the same old black thirties Citroën from last year parked on the lawn.  But the stage was local rappers and South Seas acts, all in English.  They seemed to be having trouble getting anyone to run in the hokey waiters' race.  Paris, the center and soul of France, was a long, long way off on Sunday afternoon, July 16, 2006.
 

But what was missing?  Flags.  There was not one French flag anywhere, not even the small ones.  Nothing, nada, rien.  
 

We left early.  What was the point in staying?
 

Five shots will give you a sense of the event -

 Bastille Day, Los Angeles, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  Bastille Day, Los Angeles, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   Bastille Day, Los Angeles, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Bastille Day, Los Angeles, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Bastille Day, Los Angeles, 2006


Posted by Alan at 8:07 PM PDT | Post Comment | Permalink
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Updated: Sunday, 16 July 2006 8:15 PM PDT
Wednesday, 5 July 2006
All-American Parade
Topic: Unusual Events

All-American Parade

Some shots from the 2006 Fourth of July parade in Rancho Bernardo, about twenty miles north of San Diego, inland. It was cool. All seventy-four photos will be posted in an album soon. That's geek work. It's in process. (The shots that are political in nature are here, with commentary.)

The 2006 Fourth of July parade in Rancho Bernardo



The 2006 Fourth of July parade in Rancho Bernardo


The 2006 Fourth of July parade in Rancho Bernardo



The 2006 Fourth of July parade in Rancho Bernardo



The 2006 Fourth of July parade in Rancho Bernardo



The 2006 Fourth of July parade in Rancho Bernardo



The 2006 Fourth of July parade in Rancho Bernardo





Posted by Alan at 10:38 PM PDT | Post Comment | Permalink
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