Tuesday, August 31, 2010

rest in peace

brix 42 was a place i had hoped would remain a part of the pasadena landscape.  i liked the food, i liked the atmosphere, and most importantly, i liked that they brewed their own beer.

after a few months it became clear that things were beginning to crumble.  desperate for more business, their website began promoting things like comedy night, club night, karaoke night, and all night happy hour.  a friend and i had thought about going recently and noticed they were no longer open on mondays or tuesdays - beginning of the end, he said.  he was right.

the other day mr. earl was looking for a local watering hole to take a friend who was visiting from out of town.  i recommended brix 42, but after checking their website, mr. earl informed me that they had indeed closed for business.

looking back it was probably inevitable.  the seemingly cursed location has housed a lengthy list of establishments that last for a few years and then crumble.  while i was happy brix 42 made their own beer, none of it was memorable enough for me to want to go back on a regular basis to have a pint.  i'm sad to see it go, but i'm hoping someone else who has a passion for brewing can move in to the space and start making some clever and creative ales for the pasadena public.

Monday, August 30, 2010

two downtown buildings

this unassuming shot of two of downtown pasadena's high rise buildings is simple, if not patriotic (see the american flag?).  but it is significant because the taller of these two buildings - the at&t building - apparently is on the market.  brigham yen has an interesting idea for the space.  what do you all think?

Sunday, August 29, 2010

the apple guy

here is an image of one of the vendors at the tuesday morning farmers market at villa park.

i'm jumping the gun a bit on next month's first day of the month theme (open air market), but i've got one saved that i like just as much.  i hope you enjoy!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

fire station 34

one of pasadena's fire stations, #34 is located on the corner of caltech's campus.  i like the low profile, and the scraggly pine tree makes me think this picture was taken in the northwest or something.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Thursday, August 26, 2010

one more from our recent excursion

the beautiful fountain at americana at brand.

yesterday's request for comments on the new blog format and layout resulted in zero comments.  thanks all...

not sure if that means you are all speechless from the beauty of the new look, or if you actually dislike the new styles.  help me out!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

americana at brand

last week we ventured down the 134 freeway to check out the extravagant mall in neighboring glendale.  americana at brand is an open air shopping center that has high end shops and lavish accents like a crystal chandelier (see below).  it isn't quite our style, but was fun to visit.

by the way - i'm trying out some new formatting for my blog's style and presentation.  if you normally read this with an rss feed, facebook, or through google reader, go to the actual blog today and give me your thoughts on the new look.  thanks!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

playing peekaboo

while riding my bike down los robles avenue, i caught sight of our beloved city hall peeking through the palms and white archways.  it looked cool enough to photograph, and thus - here it is!

Monday, August 23, 2010

linden optometry

i know i've featured this building (with its funky pastel swirling patterns) on the blog at some point in the past, but looking through my archives (which now total well over 1000 posts!?!), i can't for the life of me find it.  i guess that is why you label things well!

....  ah ha!  i found it!  buried way back on a theme day that was almost one year ago.  is there something ironic about not being able to find a photograph that has to do with eyesight?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

jonathan broxton visits pasadena

i noticed that temporarily demoted dodger closer, jonathan broxton, was going to be at the at&t store in pasadena's hastings ranch neighborhood yesterday.  i decided to head over to get an autograph on this photo that i took earlier this year.  the event was pretty well attended, but i got there after it had started and was still able to get my photograph signed. 

i'm trying to decide if i should start adding non-hall of famer autographs to my new blog...  take a visit and chime in.

i get the sense that the dodgers do these kinds of community events more than other mlb teams do.  maybe because they have another team so close by?  either way, i'm not complaining.  other teams should take notice.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

cd saturday: sloan's one chord to another

when i was younger i traded a vinyl copy of this album for sloan's award winning one chord to another.  i thought it was a steal of a deal.  i ended up playing that album over and over and over again (and still do on occasion).

maybe it was the blue (my favorite color) tilted rendition of the band on the cover, or maybe it was the fact that they were canadian, but what i really liked most was the somewhat quirky nature of this group.  for starters, their songs sounded like they were pulling on musical influences from classic rock to jazz, from big band to grunge.  each of the four members of the band took turns taking the lead vocal for every new song, and they traded instruments with a flourish.

One Chord to Anotherbut i think it was the music that spoke to me loudest.  the album opens with the crashing "the good in everyone", a song with lyrics as punchy as the guitar-driven sound.  it features musically tongue-in-cheek songs like "g turns to d", and the laid back sounds of what may be their biggest single hit ever, "the good in everyone".

sometime after college i was visiting a friend in washington dc.  he mentioned that sloan (a band he knew i liked) were playing that night at a venue around the corner.  i couldn't believe it.

it was a surreal experience.  at the peak of their popularity, sloan was playing in some of canada's biggest venues.  however here we were in a tiny club in dc with about 50 people - many of whom were canadian ex-pats like myself.  they played all of my favorite songs, and performed with the same energy and enthusiasm that i fell in love with back in high school - yet, i couldn't help but feel a little saddened by the experience.  here was a wildly popular canadian band that barely made a dent in the lucrative american market.  in toronto that show would have sold out weeks in advance, but in dc their show was an afterthought.

regardless, i will remember that night with a smile on my face.  it was an experience that i'll never forget.

1. u2 - the joshua tree
2. dave matthews band - crash
3. cake - comfort eagle
4. blue rodeo - five days in july
5. the beach boys - pet sounds
6. coldplay - viva la vida
7. weezer - pinkerton
8. mates of state - re-arrange us
9. radiohead - ok computer 
10. nickel creek - this side
11. u2 - how to dismantle an atomic bomb 
12. the beatles - the white album

Thursday, August 19, 2010

living rocks

another one from our recent trip to the huntington.  these tiny plants are desert dwellers, appearing just like their surrounding rocks to ward off animals that may want to gobble them up.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

cacti at the huntington

we made our first visit to the huntington last week.  it is going to take a lot of willpower to not spend the next several weeks filling the pages of this blog with the various plant-life that i photographed.  that is, unless you all want to see more!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

my girl

our beautiful baby is growing up before our eyes.  i can't believe how quickly time is slipping by.  it seems like just yesterday we brought her home from the hospital.

fatherhood has certainly made me a little busier than usual.  so much so that i have not paid proper tribute to two people who reached out to me at this blog to come check out a part of pasadena.

the first is loren at the pasadena musical theater program, and the second is taylor at the new boston court theater.  both were willing to offer me a chance to check out their current productions, however i never was able to find time.

i do encourage you to check them both out.  i hear great things!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

cd sunday: the beatles' white album

after a short hiatus, i'm back with my top 20 favorite album countdown (in no particular order).  you can see the full list thus far, at the bottom of this blog post.

today's album is from a classic band, and it is one of their classic albums.  rather than explain why i think this deserves to be on my list of favorite albums, i'm going to post a letter i just sent out to some friends.  i think it does a good job of explaining a bit of the feeling and emotion i have about this record...

The White Album (Remastered)Hey all,

I recently popped in a Beatles CD and the song "Day Tripper" came on and I was immediately transported back to the 8th grade talent show, playing that song with you all (I still can't believe we didn't win).

Of course that made me think back to practice sessions in the basement, listening to that one song on the White Album on the record player (over and over again), and shooting pool when we didn't feel like playing anymore. Those band practices gave me a chance to belong, to be a part of something meaningful, and to get to know my guitar.

Those are really happy memories in a time of life that I don't necessarily look back on with a whole lot of excitement - still trying to define who I was, still trying to fit in or be cool, and going through growing up and all that stuff.

Not surprisingly, music has continued to be a huge part of my life, and has shaped and transformed me in ways I probably can't even see.

This note is way more sentimental and sappy than I expected it to be, but I just wanted to say thanks for those memories.

I hope you all are doing well, wherever you are, and whatever you are up to these days.


1. u2 - the joshua tree
2. dave matthews band - crash
3. cake - comfort eagle
4. blue rodeo - five days in july
5. the beach boys - pet sounds
6. coldplay - viva la vida
7. weezer - pinkerton
8. mates of state - re-arrange us
9. radiohead - ok computer 
10. nickel creek - this side
11. u2 - how to dismantle an atomic bomb

Saturday, August 14, 2010

blue jays 3, angels 0

i took my annual pilgrimage to anaheim last night to watch my beloved blue jays take on the los angeles angels of anaheim (current owners of the stupidest geographic affiliation label in pro sports).  it was a close game, but in the end the boys in blue (er... black), were able to pull out the victory.  i also got a chance to watch the game from the right field seats, in very close proximity to current mlb home run leader, jose bautista.

Friday, August 13, 2010

clock tower at st. andrews

as with every friday, hundreds of other photobloggers are photographing their local sky.  check them out right here.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

kids show at levitt pavilion

meredith was at work last night, so i decided to take the baby to levitt pavilion for one of their outdoor summer kids concerts.  while it did seem to be a popular destination (more crowded than i've ever seen it), the music was WAY too loud for a baby, and she was fast asleep anyway. 

we had a nice walk, but this wasn't the best destination idea i've ever had.  lesson learned for the new dad!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


a little red sports car in front of our beautiful post office building on colorado blvd.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

leaning easy over

this image makes me feel like leaning to the side.  this isn't the first time i've posted an image of our leaning palms.  a few streets in town are famous for this feature.

once again, blogger has let me down.  this was scheduled to be posted on the 10th, but i'm just now putting it up on the 11th.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

one more from surf city, usa

i wanted to post one more from our time at the us open of surfing.

i love the way this came out - one surfer carving up the wave, and the other trying to paddle over the wave.  what a crazy sport.

Friday, August 06, 2010

us open of surfing

we spent our 4 year anniversary doing something we've never done - taking in a surfing competition.  we heard that the us open of surfing was happening down at huntington beach, and that it was free to the public, so we headed down and had a great day standing on the pier watching the competitors trying their best to impress the judges.

more skywatch friday photos can be found right here.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

happy anniversary!

four years ago today, i married the love of my life.  this photo was taken at our rehersal dinner on the night before our wedding. 

i love you meredith, and i can't imagine life without you!

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

national night out

a friend tipped me off to the pasadena version of "national night out" which happened yesterday evening at jefferson park.  this family event was hosted by the pasadena police department but also involved a large contingent of pasadena's non-profit organizations.  all were on hand for a very festive evening.

i made sure to visit my friends at the peace and justice academy booth.  just in case you weren't already aware, the pja is a new school that was started by members of the local mennonite community.  as their name implies, they are focused on educating students while simultaneously creating community awareness of issues of peace and justice.

wondering how to get in the loop for when stuff like this happens?  our wonderful public information officer blogs each week about stuff that is happening in pasadena.  check it out!

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

longing for gray skies

we've had a wonderful summer so far - only a few super-hot days over 100 degrees, and most other days have been in the 80s without a cloud in the sky.

but for some reason this week, i found myself itching for some rain, or at least some gray skies.

Monday, August 02, 2010

another reflection on city hall

it was only a few days ago that i featured this image of the dome of city hall reflected in a fountain.  however this one takes a different approach, and i think works just as well.

hope you enjoy!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

august theme day: bright colours AND cd sunday: u2's how to dismantle an atomic bomb

a lot going on today, so i hope you can keep up.  for starters, today is the first of the month which means that today is theme day.  today's theme of bright colours is captured perfectly by the massive 360 stage from u2's rose bowl concert from last year.

Click here to view thumbnails for all participants

you might be wondering why i would post a photo that is several months old - well, for starters, this week u2 begins the second leg of their 360 tour - a stretch of shows that was originally canceled after some emergency back surgery.  which is exciting news for those of us in southern california who have tickets to the anaheim shows which were originally scheduled for early this summer.

second, today is a sunday which means that i am continuing my top 20 favorite album countdown.  today's album happens to be u2's how to dismantle an atomic bomb.  this album is one of my favorites for a variety of reasons.  for starters, i think it captures both the political and entertainment personalities of the band quite well.

How to Dismantle an Atomic Bombwhile i struggled to connect with the somewhat predictable lead single, "vertigo", i do think it is an amazing song for a live stadium concert.  the rest of the album is filled with songs that i believe will stand as examples of u2's brilliance.  songs with deep spiritual and emotional meaning like "miracle drug", "crumbs from your table", and "yahweh", set the depth of the album.  but by far my favorite track is the beautiful "city of blinding lights" - which is quite possibly my favorite u2 song.

i know with u2 you either love 'em or hate 'em.  bono is certainly in the same polarizing category.  and their self-proclaimed title of the biggest band in the world certainly causes some to run the other way.  for whatever reason, this has been a band that i've loved for a long time.

1. u2 - the joshua tree
2. dave matthews band - crash
3. cake - comfort eagle
4. blue rodeo - five days in july
5. the beach boys - pet sounds
6. coldplay - viva la vida
7. weezer - pinkerton
8. mates of state - re-arrange us
9. radiohead - ok computer 
10. nickel creek - this side