Posted in Let's Get Visual, Travel

Darwin, California

People live here, but we didn’t see any.

I imagine if you live in Darwin, you are very thankful for Netflix.

Time to get up and move around:

We were so in phase in our dance hall days
We were cool on craze.
When I
You and everyone we knew could believe

Do and share in what was true.

–Wang Chung, Dance Hall Days

Darwin Dance Hall is one of the buildings yet to be vacated by Elvis.
This area was home to the Timbasha Shoshone (their website), displaced when Pres. Hoover hoovered up their land to create Death Valley National Monument.  The Timbasha Shoshone tribe received recognition by the US Government in 1983.  The Timbasha Shoshone Homeland Act was ratified in 2000: you can read about it here.  Hats off to those who have fought the federal government (for decades!) to get (a fraction) what belongs to them.
This guy is smiling on Darwin, though he’d probably be as surprised as any of us to find himself there.
There were many hunks of rusting metal in Darwin.  Why, if there were a war on you’d think that they’d need this metal.  I guess we’re either not in that kind of war, or not in that kind of metal market, or both.

You can just hear the echoing ping of target practice.
Posted in Travel

My Trip to Vegas: Part 3

First, a tamale alert for fellow Angelenos: Adela is selling her fabulous homemade tamales on Tuesday, June 2 and Wednesday, June 3. Place your order by calling 323-691-0073.

Back to Vegas: Somehow I want to respect the ‘achievements’ of Las Vegas (big, bigger, biggest), but I’m so bugged by the architecture that I can’t.

To wit:

Las Vegas 2009 Caesar's P

Took this out of the car window, car moving. Something about that building strikes me as foreboding. It’s so tall, so not proportional, so contemporary federalist on acid. Continue reading “My Trip to Vegas: Part 3”

Posted in Travel

My Trip to Vegas: Part 2

I got caught up with the idea that the only way people can interact with a place like Las Vegas (or the Bellagio) is through a camera, so I took pictures of people taking pictures of people.

LV 2009 Bellagio 7

The camera is also the way people interact with each other. There’s a lot of bossing around involved: “Stand over there!” “Smile!” “Johnny! Quit making that ridiculous face!” Continue reading “My Trip to Vegas: Part 2”

Posted in Travel

My Trip to Vegas: Part 1

The Scout worked in Las Vegas over the weekend (Lexus commercials), and I went along. He shot photos of the Super Arterial (love that name).

LV 2009 Super Arterial

Looking west. Photo by The Scout. Reminiscent of OJ’s slow-speed chase. Gosh, was that really 15 years ago (or almost – June 17, 1994)? Happy 15th Anniversary, OJ! I don’t feel sorry for you! You’ve had a great life! (Wikipedia article.)

I drove while The Scout crawled in the back seat and took photos out of the back and side windows of the car. This made me feel somewhat useful…well, for the five minutes or so that the Super Arterial location was going to be used. It has now been axed from the spot. “They also serve who only stand and wait.”

The Scout doesn’t much care for Vegas, and I suppose I don’t either except I have a horrible penchant for kitsch. It goes from old neon (the arty end) to…to…to…Oh, I don’t know what to —probably because I suppress my inner kitsch-lover fearing the wrath of the ‘truly arty’—when I should be defining the fine line between the good kitsch and the bad kitsch, so I can defend myself against haughty minimalists.

LV 2009 Planet Hollywood ext 2

Detail of the exterior of Planet Hollywood. Photo by me.

In my effort to understand the allure of Las Vegas, I find myself at The Bellagio. Look! It’s the happy couple!

LV 2009 Bellagio couple

One senses great forces of sadness and evil have brought this couple together (parents?). Or is he simply upset about the pink vest and tie?  Never mind…the picture taking must go on!

LV 2009 Bellagio Couple 2

And on!

LV 2009 Bellagio couple 3

And on…

LV 2009 Bellagio Couple 4

Dear Bellagio, Please move the cherry picker away from the happy couple!  You don’t want to ruin their special day, do you?

To be continued…

Posted in Travel, WTF?

Very Large Array

We didn’t make it to the Gila Cliff dwellings as I had hoped. One must look at the larger context here—The Scout was driving from Arkansas in the “late model” Oldsmobile Intrigue that his mother gave him (“late model” meaning, in this case, “no longer in existence”). He’d spent three weeks with his mom helping her prepare to sell her house and move into an assisted living facility in South Carolina. Major detours to historically significant sites aren’t the wisest choice on the tail end of the emotional upheaval (and fatigue) that accompanies major life changes.

On the other hand, minor detours are not out of the question.


Continue reading “Very Large Array”