October 3, 2010

You Never Forget Your First

Good morning and greetings, Open Studio fans. We’re at that magical time of the year where local artists in Santa Cruz County open up their homes and studios to the public. And once again, yours truly is part of this incredible harmonic convergence of arts, crafts and finger foods.

But before we chat about landscape and nature photography from the westside of town, let’s talk a little weather. After a summer that would have left an eskimo’s teeth chattering, the local thermometer hit the century mark on September 25, shattering a 73-year-old-record, which might have been the Doors first album, in which Jim Morrison said to grab some matches and “come on baby light my fire.” This was the first album I ever played over and over again as I still have “no time to wallow in the mire.”

Anyway, this record-breaking heat, the same kind I used to feel from the Feds, was brought on by a high pressure ridge that built up over the entire state. This surpressed the marine layer and any thoughts I had about why I’m never finished medical school.

Then Monday rolled in and the thermometer soared to 103, which tied the record set back in 1970. And as we all know, the tie goes to the runner and with a suit and jacket. But then on Tuesday, things started to cool off once again, as a result of a that high pressuring ridge weakening, like myself when confronted by a piece of chocolate layer cake. This brought in the marine layer and a tall glass of milk.

But if you think it was warm on the central coast on last Monday, it was baking like my honey glazed Easter ham in downtown Los Angeles, where the thermostat hit a scorching 113. I don’t want to say it was a tad warm, but it was so hot, squirrels were handling their nuts with potholders. And at the Betty Ford Clinic in Palm Springs, they said, “screw it. Open the bar. Drinks for everyone.”

Let’s venture on to the photo frontier. Following a warm Tuesday afternoon, parades of clouds gathered in the sky, so I headed down to Stockton Avenue primed for Disney action. This was to be the first sunset of the fall season and it was a winner, winner, chicken dinner.

The waves were pumping full force and the locals were getting big rides up and down West Cliff. As you can see from photos 4 and 5, pink was the flavor of the night, as clouds filled the sky with a full 360 degrees of color. As the title reads, you never forget your first, although sometimes those memories, like the essay I wrote for my college admissions, gets a little hazy.

I’ve been as busy at dusk as a beaver on steroids, as I shot two more gorgeous sunsets this week. In the words of the boys from Thin Lizzy, “spread the word around, the color is back in town.”

On to the late night fun. “At the UN, President Obama called on other countries to help us track down and eliminate radicals and extremists. But they told Obama, ‘Hey, the tea party is your problem, buddy.’ These Tea Party groups are very conservative. In fact, 58 percent of Tea Party members now believe Joe Biden is a Muslim. “President Obama’s approval rating dropped again. Things are so bad, Muslims are accusing him of being Christian. ” –Jay Leno

“Bob Woodward has written a book which states that the White House agonized over the decision to leave Iraq. Too bad no one agonized over the decision to go into Iraq.” –David Letterman “Bristol Palin has denied rumors that she’s dating The Situation from ‘Jersey Shore.’ If The Situation becomes Sarah Palin’s son-in-law, he’d still have the most normal name of any boy in the family.” –Jimmy Fallon “There’s a new opera about Bill Clinton. I don’t know how it ends, but I bet it isn’t with the fat lady singing.” –Craig Ferguson

“President Obama has written a children’s book. Why not? He’s got nothing else on his plate. “Obama’s book is called ‘The One-Term Engine That Could.’” –David Letterman “In a new interview with Rolling Stone magazine, President Obama said he has Stevie Wonder, Bob Dylan, and the Rolling Stones on his iPod. Unfortunately, the question was ‘Do you have a plan to fix the economy?’” –Jimmy Fallon

“President Obama has listed the songs on his iPod. The Tea Partiers are checking to see if ‘Born in the USA’ is on the list.” –Jimmy Fallon “BP announced earlier today that they have created a new Safety Division for offshore drilling. In related news, General Custer has just hired a lookout.” –David Letterman “While in New York City, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad met with Louis Farrakhan. I’m not sure where they met, but I think we can rule out the Carnegie Deli.” –Jay Leno

So Open Studios is the next two weekends. I’d love for any of you readers of Sunrise Santa Cruz to come by and check out the photography but more importantly, we can bond for a moment live in person, as this cyber experience of me writing and posting doesn’t take the place of human interaction. And if that’s not enough of a draw, then there’s also juice and cookies. I guaranteee it will be a fun experience and if not you get your money and karma back.

So I hope to see you at Open Studios this coming weekend. Birthday wishes go out on Wednesday to my cousin Gina, who’s an incredible artist and has always had the good fortune to share the same initials with me. And on Thursday, the Dean Smith of anathesiology, Dr. Michael Schur, celebrates his big day. How he finds time to perform his medical duties and write for “The Office” has always amazed me.

So enjoy the baseball playoffs and we’ll catch you later in the postseason. Aloha, mahalo and later, Willie Mays fans.


  1. Good to see you back in full color again. You’re like the Henny Youngman of nature photography – were the squirrels really using potholders?

    Comment by Ahmad Bradshaw — October 4, 2010 @ 7:21 am

  2. It’s true, you do come from a family who “invented the grin”.
    Are you using TIVO to keep up on the late night shows?
    A great start on the week, mucho gracious.

    Comment by Babs — October 4, 2010 @ 8:39 am

  3. “baking like my honey glazed Easter ham”….best line in the bunch. Thanks for mentioning squirrels, that made my day.

    Comment by aimee — October 4, 2010 @ 4:34 pm

  4. I love the orange sherbet of #6. And the other news you have been writing!

    Comment by former stats girl — October 4, 2010 @ 8:27 pm

  5. OK, it was a bit toasty, but at least, it was a dry heat. Hey, global warming is just a myth anyway.

    Comment by Some Like It Hot — October 4, 2010 @ 8:56 pm

  6. And now you know the rest of the story. But seriously, you’re blowin up all over the FLA, where it is only permissible to mention heat if Dan Snyder is out of town. Thanks for the birthday shout. L’Shana Tova.

    Comment by The MIami.... — October 5, 2010 @ 5:56 pm

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