Friday, July 15, 2011

Busy Week: Hollywood, East L.A. and RMHS Football


The week started off with a drive to San Marino, California on Monday to help my Mother Chuny and Aunt Katie get their car in working order again. Mike and Vanessa decided to join me for a day in the heat that is the San Gabriel Valley.

Mom on the left with my Aunt Katie

This is not a recent picture.

Newbury Park's newest Panther

Vanessa had never been to the campus, so we stopped in to participate in Mike's mini-tour of the campus.

Next stop, HOLLYWOOD!!!

Grauman's Chinese Theater
Hollywood Blvd. at its finest!

It was still early so we stopped in the heart of Tinsletown to take in the Chinese Theater's iconic courtyard.

Vanessa with Leonardo DiCaprio

He was taller than I thought.

Mike's favorite actor on the "Walk of Fame"

Laurie's favorite actors on the
"Walk of Fame"

A Swedish Treasure

Make that TWO Swedish Treasures!

Guarding the Chinese Theater Courtyard

Dozens of Hollywood's best and brightest stars have left their hand and foot prints in cement in this courtyard for over 70 years.

Suave

Tough

Funny

???

Don't know, I've never read a Harry Potter book or seen one of Harry's movies. I hear they're O.K.

Vanessa with a Disney Store in the distance

Danger!

GO CATANIA!!!

Hollywood's Hard Rock

Italian Racing Car

Fast AND Sporty!

With Hollywood now behind us, we continued to work our way towards San Marino and a trip to the auto mechanics but not before a nostalgic trip through East L.A.

First Street near Lorena

This was where we lived until I was about three years old. The Franz family has been doing taxes out of this address ever since. My Aunt Katie still uses their services after all of these years!

Lorena near First Street

Yes, we moved just around the corner into this now interesting two story business. We lived upstairs while my Father opened his medical practice downstairs. This arrangement only lasted for about two years before we moved to San Marino.

First Street and Evergreen

Finally, in the 1980's, my Dad bought three parcels of land on this spot. After tearing down the existing buildings, he built his brand-spanking-new office where Clinica La Fe now stands.

The current florist shop was a dentist office in his day. I'm glad that he is not around to see how the subsequent owners of his dream office have let things slip.

From there it was on to my Mom's house, a tow from AAA of Southern California, a late lunch and some interesting family history tidbits from the ladies.

I did not know that when I was born in 1947 and before moving into the First Street house, we lived in a unique home in Long Beach. Because of the post-War housing crunch, WWII veterans had first choice on available housing in Southern California. My parents were recent immigrants from Cuba, thus, our first home was a rental in Long Beach that was designed and built for . . . little people.

I think that that is today's politically correct term for what my decidedly un-PC Mom called "midgets."

Apparently I was good with this situation but my six foot tall Father was not for some reason.

On Thursday, I joined Mike again and Joe Mollica for another trip to East L.A. but for a much different reason . . . A FOOD CHALLENGE

El Tepeyac
One of America's GREAT Pig Out Places

Good Enough for Man vs. Food

Good enough for us!

But what is the Challenge?

The Manuel Special Burrito!!!

Five plus pounds of pulsating nutrition!

Two huge tortillas, rice, incredible refried beans, guacamole, onions, beef, cheese and salsa beyond belief.

In the late 1960's I tried to eat one of these babies by myself. I got about 2/3's of the way through, stopped and was miserable for hours.

Mike knew, from observing previous failed attempts, that he wanted no part of the madness.

Joe was primed and ready for it until he saw one on the table next to us being divided among four sensible adults for lunch.

Psychologically he was done. Discretion was the better part of culinary valor on this day.

We ordered the Manuel Special you see above and shared in it equally. It tasted great!

I was only mildly uncomfortable for an hour.

Our Greeter

Manuel himself? He was nice to us.

After lunch, it was time to head back to Ventura County and another afternoon of 7-on-7 at Rio Mesa.

Today we would play Santa Paula and Malibu again. Our scheduled third opponent Santa Barbara was a no-show.

Santa Paula Game

Good stance by Jordan Nunnery at CB

Collision

Jump Ball

It's ALL about the hair!!!

Churning for Yardage

The Red Baron's Fly-By

A ball attracting a crowd

Junior QB Kado Brown

Malibu Game

Broken Up Pass

DC Mike Moon in the Huddle

Up for Grabs

Nick Pizano = Pass Interference

Coach Bo Espinoza

A GREAT LB/Center for Rio Mesa in the 1990's, he went on to play college football first at the University of Hawaii and then at Montana State University.

He joins us this year as our strong safeties, a.k.a., Falcons coach.

A fine addition to our staff in my opinion.

Interception

Ben Quantock's pick brought the Malibu game and the day to an end.

It was a decent afternoon for us but not spectacular. We only have one day left on 7-on-7 this Summer, this Saturday at Santa Barbara City College against teams mostly from Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties.

It should be a fine day at the beach!

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