Monday, August 31, 2020

Play Music on the Porch Day

Saturday was International Play Music on the Porch Day. An acquaintance of mine, Brian Mallman, started this wonderful movement.  Play Music on the Porch Day has become an annual international day of music where musicians perform outdoors on a porch, front yard, sidewalk, or balcony. They play music for everyone to enjoy. To see other performances just Google the hashtag #playmusicontheporchday.  

I sang a great, uplifting song written by my ukulele teacher, Cali Rose. The song is called BRAND NEW DAY.

Click here to listen.

I hope we can all have a BRAND NEW DAY very soon!

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Sunday, August 16, 2020

Where Were You When Elvis Died?

"Young Elvis," painting by Sharon Furrate

Tuesday, August 16, 1977, 43 years ago. I'd just started a new job at Twentieth Century Fox Studios the month before. I was sitting in my cubicle in the old Administration Building, across from Stage 9 ("M*A*S*H" Stage). I was working in the International Accounting Department as a secretary. One of the managers came out of his office and told us the news about Elvis' death. Jerry couldn't believe what he'd heard. The secretary next to me, Jeanne, started crying. The news traveled quickly through the building. Everyone was turning on radios to hear the details.

While I realized Elvis' importance to the history of rock and roll (I wasn't one of his super-fans). By the time I was REALLY interested in popular music, it was all Beach Boys, Beatles and Rolling Stones for me. Elvis was considered passe'.  

In the mid-70's some of my girlfriends were traveling to Las Vegas regularly to catch his shows. I was invited, but decided that this was not a hip thing for me to do. I, of course, only wanted to be the hippest of the cool. I regret that I never saw Elvis perform live. Even toward the end of his career, he was still a very powerful presence on stage. Sigh.

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Thursday, August 13, 2020

Beverly Hills History

The caption for the photo above that appeared in the L.A. Herald Examiner in 1960 reads, "Commemorating the work of eight film pioneers who led the fight against Beverly Hills' annexation by Los Angeles in 1922, a 30-foot marble monument was dedicated at Beverly Dr. and Olympic Blvd. on March 9, 1960. A spiraling bronze replica of a strip of motion picture film is topped by a 14-karat gold star. Among filmland personalities taking part in the fete are, left to right, Conrad NagelCorinne GriffithMary Pickford and Harold Lloyd."
I was at this dedication. Sooky Goldman, photographer and reporter for the Beverly Hills Courier, recruited our Brownie Troop from Beverly Vista Elementary School to participate in the dedication ceremony for the statue. There was a photo of our troop, saluting in front of the statue in the BH Courier. My copy of the photo is long gone, but I still remember the day.
Beverly Vista Brown Troop, 1960 - L-R: Jeri, Denise, Allison, Erica, Jody, Ellen, Nancy, Leslie, Sharon, Eva, Ria, Mandy, Dana, Sandy, Karin, Gayle - Back row: Troop Leaders, Mrs. Milner, Mrs. Martin

 Our neighbor, Sooky Goldman, later became active in the preservation of Franklin Canyon Park

The statue is still on Olympic Blvd. at Beverly Drive, right near Von's Market. It's in the middle of this traffic triangle. I must go over there again and photograph the statue! I feel proud to have participated in this small piece of Beverly Hills history.

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Tuesday, August 04, 2020

Eating Out, Inside

Argh! This pandemic is driving me stir-crazy. Yes, I'm lucky to live in Southern California where the weather is almost always nice. During the Covid-19 crisis, if we're not inside our homes, we cannot gather with any amount of people in a public inside space. No crowded clubs, theaters or RESTAURANTS. I want to eat INSIDE a restaurant....a coffee shop interior being my preferred favorite!
Denny's Coffee Shop Interior, 1970
Like many people, I've always been attracted to mid-20th century coffee shop design, especially the interiors. They have large windows so you can see the warm and inviting atmosphere inside. This type of architecture was designed to lure people sitting in traffic to visit. Coffee shops of the late1940's to the 1970's usually exhibited "theme" architecture known as "Googie," after the premier coffee shop space-age design. You can read about the origins of this type of architecture here.
I came across some coffee shop interiors on Facebook, highlighted in the group, "Photos from Mid-Century Modern and Historical Los Angeles in the '60s, '70s, and '80s." I was immediately captivated by the bright and cheerful interiors. The early coffee shops remind of Tomorrow Land at Disneyland!
International House of Pancakes, 1970
The architecture firm of Armet and Davis desgined many of these space-age style coffee shops in Los Angeles, including Denny's and Pann's, featured here. 
Pann's Coffee Shop, 2010 and 2020
I'm not sure who was responsible for the IHOP (International House of Pancakes) A-Frame design, but I love it!  Johnnie's Broiler in Downey, now a Bob's Big Boy was originally designed by Paul B. Clayton.
Bob's Big Boy, Downey, 2010 and 2020
One day we'll be able to gather together at a google-style coffee shop. I'm so looking forward to that time. Sigh.

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