Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: ‘Z’ Anywhere in the Word

Self’s word is AMAZING.

Here’s a picture of something son left behind in his room. He attended college in Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo. His freshman dorm was Muir, the Math and Sciences dorm. He moved to shared housing for his sophomore year, but his third and fourth years at Cal Poly, he was back in Muir — as an RA, or Resident Assistant.

When he graduated, the crowd that attended commencement included a group of students who had all gone through Muir and had the good fortune (they said) to have son as an RA.


Excavating Son’s Room: Amazing Discovery

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Signs: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

A T-shirt self bought in Bacolod. Translation: "I am from Negros Occidental." (Dear Departed Dad's Home Province)

A T-shirt self bought in Bacolod. Translation: “I am from Negros Occidental.” (Dear Departed Dad’s Home Province)

Sighted at the San Luis Obispo Farmers Market, Thursdays year-round

Sighted at the San Luis Obispo Farmers Market, Thursdays year-round

Aquarius Theater, Emerson Street, downtown Palo Alto

Aquarius Theatre, Emerson Street, downtown Palo Alto: A fixture of self’s Stanford grad student days. She saw her first Kurosawa movie here: She thinks it was “Kagemusha.”


Letters 2: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

It’s strange that self is in London but here she keeps posting about back home.

Nevertheless, she needs to store her London images for a while, it’s all a little bit much (i.e. overwhelming)

In the meantime, here’s a second post on the week’s theme:  LETTERS.

For this post, self decided to focus on signage.

San Luis Obispo Farmers Market, August 2011

San Luis Obispo Farmers Market, August 2011

Picture # 1:  Son attended Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.  Two years after he graduated, we finally attended San Luis Obispo’s famous Farmers Market, where self took this photo.

Filipino American Fiesta at Yerba Buena, summer 2011

Filipino American Fiesta at Yerba Buena, summer 2011

Picture # 2:  There are so many Filipinos in the US of A!  And the biggest groups are in the San Francisco Bay Area.  Every year, there’s a Filipino fiesta at Yerba Buena Park in San Francisco.  Self wants to say August.  Pampanga, which self visited last year (at the invitation of Alawi Canlas, who she met when she was a Fulbright Fellow at Skyline College, several years ago) is famous for its cooking.

T-shirt self bought today from L'Fisher Hotel Gift Shop

T-shirt is sold in the gift shop of L’Fisher Main.

Picture # 3 is self-explanatory.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Threshold 3: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

Looking over this group of shots: they’re fairly recent, taken within the last month or so. She wanted to find DOORS, but not really. Hope son’s new hobby, a front porch greening up, and a bridge fit the bill.

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is THRESHOLD.

A threshold, says The Daily Post, is “a point of entering.”

Son and Jennie are starting to learn how to scuba dive.

Son and Jennie are starting to learn how to scuba dive.  They take  lessons from this place in Culver City.

The Front Porch. The pots of hydrangea have finally leafed out.  It's SPRING!

The Front Porch. The pots of hydrangea have finally leafed out. It’s SPRING!

Taking the Bay Bridge Home After a Writers Group Meeting in Walnut Creek

Taking the Bay Bridge Home After a Writers Group Meeting in Walnut Creek

Self has heard a lot of criticism about the construction of the new Bay Bridge:  apparently, so soon after its construction, it’s already starting to exhibit structural failings.

But, she thinks it is a thing of beauty.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Excavation: Son’s Room

Looking through son’s bookshelves is a fascinating experience.  The shelves contain books from pre-school, all the way to college textbooks.

This evening (after a strenuous evening of hoo-haa:  Terminator: Salvation was on TV.  Self will say again:  there was only one good thing about this movie:  Moon Bloodgood’s walk.  Well, maybe two good things:  the other being Bryce Dallas Howard’s intensely blue or grey eyes), self is relaxing by once again going through son’s shelves when she pulls out a book called Cal Poly Land:  A Field Guide.

The book has beautiful pictures.  A section of the book, written by David Chipping of the Cal Poly Physics Department, is titled, simply, “Geology.”

Self reads a few passages:

Way off to the west was an ocean ridge, from which new sea floor of the Pacific Plate oozed up as lava from a fissure in the earth’s crust.  This solidified under water into igneous rocks called basalt, gabbro, peridotite, and serpentinite.

*     *     *     *

Over time, slivers of oceanic crust jammed up against the western edge of the Americas, like wads of paper that might pile up at the end of the machine, mixing with layers of sediment eroded from the mountains and spreading westward from North America itself.  These geologic materials either stayed close to the land surface, or were fragmented and dragged downward into the depths of the subduction zone.

There is a map, illustrating “A Geological Tour of Poly Canyon.”  And here are the highlights:

  1. Serpentinite Outcrops
  2. Westward Fork – The distant line of riparian vegetation marks the eastern margin of a landslide.
  3. Erosive Stream – Blue serpentinite slopes are on the far side.

There is as well a list of Common Native Grasses found in the land around Cal Poly, which include:  wild blue-rye, June grass, deer grass, purple needle-grass, California brome, and California oat-grass.

There are, as well, Common Coastal Scrub Plants such as:  California sagebrush, coyote bush, golden-yarrow, deerweed, bush monkey-flower, redberry, fuschia-flowered gooseberry, black sage, and poison-oak.

In a section called “Mammals,” the following wildlife can be spotted around Cal Poly:  long-tailed weasels, striped skunks, racoons, badgers, mountain lions or cougars, gray foxes, bobcats, bats, rabbits, rodents, pocket gophers, western gray squirrels, deer mice, dusky-footed woodrats, opossums, and mule deer.

Under “Reptiles,” there are:  horned lizards, California alligator lizards, gopher snakes, California red-sided garters, California kingsnakes, western rattlesnakes, and southwestern pond turtles.

The lists just go on and on and on.

Fascinating, simply fascinating.

More End of Summer

This week, hubby and self are planning to drive south to San Luis Obispo to see son one last time before he leaves for Claremont, where he’s starting the second year of the Ph.D. program in social psychology.  For ages and ages, self has wanted to check out the San Luis Obispo Farmers Market, but it’s on Thursday, and we never could manage to get down there on any time other than the weekend.  But this week, we are driving down on a Thursday.  Yaaay!

The San Luis Obispo Farmers Market is famous.  It’s reputed to be the best on the Central Coast.  Their barbecued tri-tip steaks are supposed to be heavenly!  Just thinking about it is enough to make self’s tummy start to rumble.

As for today’s activities, hubby wanted to drive to the city to check out the Pistahan in Yerba Buena, but self persuaded him that tomorrow afternoon might be a mellower, more relaxing experience.

So instead we saw a movie in the downtown Century 20:  “30 Minutes or Less,” with Jesse Eisenberg, Aziz Ansari, Danny McBride, Michael Peña, and even a cameo by Fred Ward (who self will always connect to “Tremors” and that movie about Henry Miller).  Self enjoyed it —  an hour and a half of crude language, but the performances, especially by Eisenberg and Michael Peña, were entertaining.  So, two and a half out of four stars!  Hubby didn’t find it funny, but the teen-aged boys in the audience certainly did.  Afterwards, hubby disclosed that he’d looked up the movie’s run time:  it was 84 minutes.  Funny, it felt longer —  bwah ha ha haaa!  But Jesse Eisenberg —  he does a better Michael Cera than Michael Cera himself!  Can’t wait to see him in Woody Allen’s next movie.

After the movie, we stopped by Peet’s for some coffee, and then took a leisurely stroll down Broadway.  We always stop by the Gourmet Haus Stadt.  After checking out a table of sale items, and the sausage selections in the freezer, self ended up purchasing a Ritter chocolate bar (the one with yogurt filling —  yuuum!) and two loaves of bread.

Other thoughts, in these last weeks of summer:

In years past, whenever we drove down to visit son in San Luis Obispo, we always made it a point to stop by the Old Edna Deli.  The deli had absolutely the best apricot bars self has ever tasted.  She wishes son would remember to bring some up, when he visits, but he never does.  Their panini sandwiches were pretty good, too.  Yesterday, while self was looking around for hotels in the area, she decided to ask about the bed and breakfast that used to be attached to the deli.  Much to her dismay, she discovered that the deli had closed.  Huuuge disappointment!

In addition, self now knows she will never get to experience the fabulousness of Burning Man:  she read somewhere that this year’s festival will be the last.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

3rd Weekend of August (2010): Central Coast

View from Dorn's, Morro Bay

Self had brunch with Amanda and son at Read the rest of this entry »

On Her 2nd Hour at Starbucks, Downtown SLO

Saw “Terminator: Salvation” again. Self’s brain has died. Self would dearly love to go on about the movie’s director, McG, but self is afraid that son’s feelings will be hurt if he reads this post. Son’s friend Kramer, who is a very intelligent person, liked the movie “except for the end.” Self would like to say she discovered some further redeeming value in this product, the second time around, but — (Self! Haven’t you said you would not rip into this movie? OK, enough!)

The only other people in the audience were two bearded youths, probably the only geeks self has seen so far this trip, and three blonde girls in the row directly behind who were constantly erupting in giggles. At least, Moon Bloodgood is at hand and she is still fun to watch for she has that walk. There are chase scenes, which are diverting. And there is still Sam Worthington (self understands he is James Cameron’s leading man in “Avatar”). But, self just wants to get this one off her chest: Any action movie that features a cute kid is sure to be bad. That’s why “Aliens” was bad. If “Avatar,” James Cameron’s new movie, has a cute kid in it, self will refuse to watch it. Self feels that if one is going to use a kid in an action movie, better make it an ugly kid, like the one in “Road Warrior.” (Who calls a kid “Star”??? Oh, she forgot: this was set in LA. Even in post-Apocalytpic LA, names must have singular meanings)

Son says he really wants to see “Transformers 2.” Self thinks that Megan Fox is a fox (and they are always showing the same scene of her in the preview: the one where she sits astride a motorcycle). In real life, a woman like this would never look twice at Shia. Where is self going with this? Again, self’s brain has died. Luckily, she decided to tote along her laptop and that is why she is now seated at a Starbucks directly across from the Barnes & Noble in downtown SLO. Hubby and son are once again engaged in browsing books. Self is here checking her on-line class on her laptop. It’s been two hours: hubby and son must be reading entire books. Hubby keeps saying how happy he is not to be in the office, so even though self thinks she could never ever spend that much time in a Barnes & Noble, she tells herself: Bite ‘cher tongue, woman!

Most of the guys here look like Zac Efron, and most of the girls are blonde and tanned and look like Hayden Panetierre. Outfit of choice: tube tops and metallic sandals. Toe-nail color of choice: bright pink or sky-blue. Hubby has remarked several times today that son is very lucky to have gone to a college where there are so many good-looking women. (Hubby attended Stanford in the mid-1980s. Perhaps the campus was a different place then. That is, there were probably a lot less women in Engineering. No wonder hubby feels deprived!)

Weather is slightly cooler than yesterday. Self today imbibed a sinful cottage cream cheesecake topped with fresh boysenberries at a restaurant on Avila Beach. Then, had a peanut butter/chocolate chip cookie at a place called Cowboy Cookies in downtown SLO. She’s trying to keep the eating down but, boy, it is hard.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

The Day After Commencement 2009 (A Very Rambling Post)

Self fairly groggy and bleary-eyed this morning — this despite having had six and a half hours sleep last night: a record, the most hours self has ever slept in a hotel room.

What can self say about being here? The weather in San Luis Obispo is always beautiful. The streets of the town are so quaint that they make self want to cry. The coconut and pineapple bars from the Old Edna Deli are the best self has ever tasted, the spinach-stuffed ravioli self had yesterday at Café Roma was ravishing, and The Holiday Inn Express in Atascadero is fine beyond belief.

Let’s see, what happened yesterday? After dinner with son and Kramer (who had driven down for the weekend and stayed until the last possible moment, even though he has a job in Sunnyvale that requires him to be awake and work-ready at 8 a.m. today), we all went downtown, to the Barnes & Noble. This particular B & N is amazing: there is an escalator to the second floor (self suddenly remembers that the B & N on the upper East Side has similar vastness — but it just doesn’t have the same vibe) where there is a coffee shop that actually sells good coffee. There are students everywhere. They do not carry either The New York Times or the Wall Street Journal, but at least they have The Los Angeles Times. Son browsed the GRE books, hubby browsed the military history books, and self sat on a chair in the back, reading the papers. Outside, in the movie theatre next door, “Terminator: Salvation” (which son wants to see today, self didn’t even dare bring up “Star Trek”!!!) and “Land of the Lost” were showing. Self had told son and Kramer at dinner (Tahoe Joe’s) that “Land of the Lost” was an incredibly good movie, and they both looked at her with poker faces. At that dinner, self could only manage an appetizer of deep-fried artichoke hearts. But the boys, in spite of having had very hearty meal at Café Roma for lunch, went straight for the Joe’s Ribeye Steaks and plowed manfully through.

Now, self realizes she is beginning to ramble. She was writing about the Barnes & Noble, and now she’s moved backwards to Tahoe Joe. Before she risks further alienating dear blog readers, self will bid them adieu. Only until tonight, however, when self will hopefully be able to amuse with tales of fresh adventures. Self will close with a picture of a most fab dessert, son’s chocolate something at Café Roma:

Son's chocolate dessert from Café Roma

Son's chocolate dessert from Café Roma

Naturally, Dear Blog Readers

Self is taking ze laptop with her to San Luis Obispo, for she is sure to have many many adventures, adventures only someone as inimitable as self can devise (!!).

There will be “situations” galore — though, sadly, none having to do with Dearest Mum. Perhaps hubby can fill in.

There will be tomorrow’s graduation ceremony, during which self will probably weep copious tear of joy (also exhaustion — hubby has just informed self that we will be parking a mile away from Spanos Stadium, the site of the festivities)

There will be lunch following at Café Roma (Self has called at least once a week for the past two months, just to make sure the reservation is still there)

There will be night-time drive to Holiday Inn in Atascadero (the closest self could get to San Luis Obispo, without breaking the bank).

Meanwhile, self will also be communicating with her on-line students, and finishing the two books she has to review (both on Burma: though one is vastly more interesting than the other), and if she gets inspired and not too tired, she just may be able to start a short story. (Self, would this not be overly ambitious? How will you be able to write, when you will be spending the whole day gallivanting hither and thither? When will you ever learn to “bend like a willow,” not be so self-absorbed, be open to new experiences, blah blah blah!)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

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