Tag Archives: los angeles

Looking back at 2018

I think 2018 was a pretty great year. I moved to a new apartment, which I really like, and started a new job that is challenging and rewarding. I enjoyed spending time with many wonderful friends, went on lots of great adventures, and saw a lot of fun shows.

I went to San Diego Comic-Con again for the 8th year in a row. This year I attended with gem, Antonio, and Kaleigh.

I cosplayed Fix-It Felix, Jr. again. And here’s gem as Lilo!

gem and I took Antonio to Zion National Park in Utah and to Vegas for his bachelor party. We did lots of great hiking in Zion…

…visited the Warner Valley Dinosaur Tracks…

…saw Cirque du Soleil in Vegas…

…went to Neon Museum of old signs…

…and went ax throwing in Vegas!

Antonio married Kaleigh! I was one of his two Best People. (He had one man and woman as his Best People).

Here’s Antonio Best Woman, Best Man, and groomsman.

My photo of Anela was shown in the OC Fair.

Here we are with the photo hanging in the gallery!

Christin’s photo of us was also shown!

I always knew that deep down I was a model.

My postcard collection was featured in the OC Fair as well. I entered it as a collection of foreign postcards. I’ve traded mail with 55 countries (up 3 in 2018) and 35 US states (up 8). Considering only postcards, I’ve traded with 50 countries (up 4) and 28 US states (up 8), having received from 41 countries (up 7) and 17 US states (up 5) and sent to 45 countries (up 2) and 25 US states (up 8).

I got rid of my mustache. Sometimes I miss it.

We got season passes to Universal and went a lot of times!

Sometimes I think about what could have been if I had purchased these sunglasses. The world would be blurry, but I’d look so fly.

Andy and Kaylin got married!

And more importantly, the bar served a variety of alcohol when it was supposed to be beer and wine only. Okay, the wedding itself was actually more important, but the drinks were still somewhat important.

The Imperial Sand Dunes made for a gorgeous (but hot) backdrop.

Christin, Anela, and gem were all beautiful models!

On the way home, we visited Salvation Mountain.

Tanaka Farms’ sunflower festival was fun and beautiful!

gem really loved the huge sunflowers!

Here’s Anela and me with Hello Kitty.

 

And here’s gem and me with Hello Kitty!

Anela and I visited the lavender festival, and she wore a Ukrainian outfit.

There were many photo shoots, although a lot of them aren’t ready to be posted yet. Here’s one of Angel Kawaii as Harley Quinn!

The Arts Alive and Street Painting Festival in Mission Viejo ended up being more fun than I expected, especially because there were over 50 fairy doors.

The Christmas treasure hunt was so fun. Look at the detail on the map Pete made!

2018 was the year of pop ups for me it seems. I visited Happy Place for the second time. Here I am with gem in the rubber ducky room! I still need to go through those photos…

gem and I went to San Francisco to visit the Museum of Ice Cream (and to visit our friends Matt and Katie).

The Sprinkle Pool was awesome!

gem took me to The Pizza Experience as a Christmas present. Photo ops and pizza?! Amazing!

This is how I work out now.

I had to see the Gudetama x Curry House collaboration with gem. Luckily the curry is delicious there!

And then there’s the Rilakkuma x Roasting Water collaboration too! I’ve been to two of their locations with gem for this collaboration, and I’ve visited the one near my house many times on my own.

And I can’t forget Aggretsuko’s DEN OF RAGE!!!

gem and I learned about ethics at The Good Place Experience.

gem took this photo of me as a luchador at Luzia. I really saw a ton of shows this year:

  • Cirque du Soleil’s Luzia under the Grand Chapiteau
  • The Book of Mormon at Segerstrom Center
  • Allegiance at the Aratani Theatre
  • The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Jurassic Park at the Rockwell: Table & Stage
  • David Sedaris speaking at the Long Beach Performing Arts Center
  • Cirque du Soleil’s Zumanity at New York-New York
  • Suburban Legends in Downtown Disney three times
  • Drag show at the Velvet Lounge
  • Goldfinger with The Suicide Machines, Buck-o-Nine, and Suburban Legends at the House of Blues, Anaheim
  • Dear Evan Hansen at the Ahmanson Theatre
  • Santa Claus Conquers the Martians at the Maverick Theater
  • Wicked at the Pantages
  • The Fury of the Aquabats 20th Anniversary show with The Aquabats featuring former Aquabats Catboy, Prince Adam, and Chainsaw and opener C.J. Ramone
  • Love Actually Live at The Wallis
  • …47 seasons of TV shows and 42 films (not counting repeated viewings)

What an action packed year! Can I cram as many cool things into 2019?

…oh and I also fractured my foot. Shhh!

LA Times Festival of Books and Jon Klassen

LA Times Festival of Books

When Collin told me that he noticed Jon Klassen, an author and illustrator I really like, was going to be at the LA Times Festival of Books, I immediately told gem and made plans to attend. Among other works, Klassen authored and illustrated I Want My Hat Back and This Is Not My Hat.

LA Times Festival of Books, Jon Klassen

This weekend we headed up to USC to meet him. Klassen was really friendly, and we both enjoyed chatting with him. We showed him some Snapchat art gem made involving his characters and told him about the “I Want My Yoga Shirt Back” flyer gem put up at her yoga studio when she lost her shirt. He complimented her Snapchat art!

LA Times Festival of Books, I Want My Hat Back

Check out my sweet first edition copy now! Awesome. 🙂

LA Times Festival of Books, This Is Not My Hat

We even discussed how he hears his characters’ voices. Klassen said hears them all deadpan and imagines that if there were actors portraying his characters, they’d be the worst actors he could find. I love it! While they do all have different voices when I read the book, they’re all pretty deadpan too actually. I told him how I do voices and even made a puppet show. He asked me to send him a link to the performance!

It was a lot of fun. Besides meeting Jon Klassen, we also got to eat some Filipino food from a food truck and some Thai sweet sticky rice with mango. We played on some outdoor workout equipment and took plenty of photos and various little photo ops. There was even an archaeologist there answering kids’ questions. He had a dinosaur puppet with him that was half controlled by someone in a suit and half controlled by someone outside. The kids wanted to pet it – adorable! On our way out, we even ran into our friend, Katy!

Here’s my performance of I Want My Hat Back. It’s so embarrassing! I love this book so much, and it was a great pleasure getting to meet Jon Klassen!

Walt Disney Concert Hall

Walt Disney Concert Hall

Walt Disney Concert Hall is a beautiful building in Downtown LA. I’ve never had the chance to go inside, but I have taken photos in front of it. Here’s gem with her ukulele!

Los Angeles

This was actually taken while we were lost. I don’t remember what park it was, but it was really pretty.

Walt Disney Concert Hall

She looks like she’s enjoying that ukulele of hers.

Walt Disney Concert Hall

I think it was cold by this point, but don’t they look lovely anyways?

Walt Disney Concert Hall

After this, we were done with the front of the building.

Walt Disney Concert Hall

This is a rose fountain in a little garden above and behind the concert hall proper. It’s very beautiful!

Walt Disney Concert Hall

gem took a photo of me at the Concert Hall too. Thank you, gem!

We took some photos on the train tracks that same day. You’ll see them soon.

Firsts, Seconds and Thirds: African American Leaders in Los Angeles During the 1960s & 1970s

IMG_5563Last week was the opening reception of Firsts, Seconds and Thirds: African American Leaders in Los Angeles During the 1960s & 1970s. kristine
My friend Kristine has been working at the Los Angeles Public Library Central Branch Photo Collection Department as an archivist for the Rolland J. Curtis Photo Archive. Curtis was the Field Deputy to Billy G. Mills and Tom Bradley, who were two of the first three African-American councilman on the LA city council in the ’60s. Kristine sorted through thousands of photographs and was the curator. How cool is that? You can read more about her project on her blog, Film Is Memory. IMG_5555

Look, her name’s on the poster!

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gem and Kristine!

kristine

I had to show her fiancĂ©, Justin, some love too. IMG_5588Here’s gem and Justin as well. IMG_5559gem wanted to get a photo at the podium. She’s a thinker, that one.

kristine

I didn’t realize the mic was hot, and when I chuckled, it amplified it. I don’t think anyone noticed luckily.

kristine

gem also took this of me through some furniture. IMG_5604

After the opening reception, during which I managed to stuff my face full of cookies and miniature cinnamon buns, we had some dinner at Chego, a Korean-Mexican fusion restaurant in LA. I got a tasty kimchi spam bowl. Rather than show you that, I’m going to show a low-quality photo of the “Ooey Gooey Fries” – very unhealthy, I’m sure.

kristine

After dinner, we took some photos with Pooh and got some ice cream. Funny how my lips were inches away from Justin’s face in the photo I posted above, but when taking a photo with this disgusting public Pooh Bear, I accidentally touched my lips to him. Ugh. Pooh looks a bit bashful, don’t you think?

iHOOKAH featuring Anela and Second City featuring Alex

Hi there! I did some things this weekend.

Friday I went to the Dub for drinks and met some friends back at the house. I got to try Stax Cookie Bar, which was delicious!

On Saturday, gem, Duncan, and I went to Anela’s.

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gem balanced with Anela’s sword while Duncan relaxed.

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Anela was dancing at iHOOKAH, and gem joined her! I like how this happened to turn out thanks to the crazy lights.

ihookah

iHOOKAH took some photos too. Unfortunately, I think I look like a psycho.

ihookah

I just noticed that they blur out the bottles.

ihookah

Woo! Let’s all dance while Duncan gets a drink.

Actually, I think he was putting it down.

ihookah

Remember to tip.

Obviously, I didn’t take those. iHOOKAH took those photos; you can find them on Facebook here!

second city

On Sunday, gem and I headed to The Second City in Hollywood to see Alex’s show, Millennial Falcon. It was really funny, and I’m glad I got to see it as it was the last show! It was also cool to finally visit Second City.

Because it was getting late, we didn’t get to stay for the post-graduation festivities, but we still got to chat with Alex and Erica a bit.

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Afterward, gem and I got a hot dog and then wandered around.

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Yay, elephants! I’m sure I’ve taken pretty much these exact photos before, but I can’t help but take more photos.

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Robin Williams.

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Tom Hanks!

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Some sort of cute French restaurant that was closed.

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And of course, no visit is complete without Beard Papa.

Watson Adventures – The Murder at the Getty Scavenger Hunt

The Getty

Saturday I went to the Getty for a Watson Adventures scavenger hunt! gem planned the whole thing, and it was a ton of fun. Each team is given a set of clues consisting of a specific room number and a description of a work of art that includes missing information. Participants need to determine which artwork is the one referenced and then figure out the piece of information requires. At the end, you also need to figure out, from the information learned from the clues, who committed the murder and his motive.

watson adventures

gem drove Duncan, Anela, Jonathan, and me. We met her friends and some of their friends at the Getty. Here’s a photo of Anela, Jonathan, Peter, Rezwan, Richard, Duncan, me, James, Vincent, Sarah, Vivian, and gem! We had to split into two teams, and I was with gem, Jonathan, Peter, and Rezwan. With eleven total teams, we tied with two other teams for first. Unfortunately, the tie-breaker wasn’t kind to us, and we ended second. We weren’t good at guessing when the board game Clue was released. Oh well!

The Getty

After a day of hardcore detectiving, most of us went to Thai Boom for a delicious dinner. It was a fantastic meal. Better yet, it was great getting to know people over dinner. It made up for not getting to spend time with everyone during the scavenger hunt.

It was a good way to spend a Saturday.

No snow play!

Snow photo shoot with gem and AnelaLast weekend gem, Anela, Daniel, and I went to play in the snow near Mountain High! Well, Anela wanted to go for a photo shoot, Daniel was photographing her, and gem and I just wanted to see snow. Neither of us had ever been in the snow, and I was pretty excited to go.

Photo credit on the above photo to Daniel Baker!

Quick, pose!

We spent a bit of time scoping out the snow and deciding where to shoot.

Snowball!

Pretty much everywhere had signs that said “No snow play” or the equivalent in Spanish. It was actually harder to find a English sign than a Spanish sign.Snow photo shoot with gem and Anela

That didn’t stop us from making snowballs anyways!

Photographer

Daniel taking photos.

Photographer

Where’d he go? OoOOo it’s a photographer-ghost!Snow photo shoot with gem and Anela

What’s it feel like to lie in the snow? Pretty damn cold.

Nap time

Oh, and wet. I was wet for a while. gem had these sweet Tokidoki rain boots that worked to keep her feet dry from the snow. My feet were wet for the rest of the day, and my shoes were wet for a day or so after.

Modeling

Here’s Anela posing, but Daniel’s will look much better of course. gem and I were basically her attendants. We took her a coat off her and fanned out her dress when it was time to shoot. It was fun!

Kick!

gem kick!

When we were about to leave, it actually started snowing. Up until then, it was just raining.

I think gem was excited about this fact.

gem poses

Here’s gem in the snow!

Sushi for dinner

We ended the day with sushi from Sake 2 Me. Delicious!Snow photo shoot with gem and Anela

Photo credit on this one to Daniel Baker as well. Thanks for the fun day guys!