Showing posts from January, 2010

Culver City Trip

What a fantastic short trip we had in Culver City. We flew in Friday afternoon and flew back Saturday afternoon. We ate, drank - a little too much and partied through the evening. We really didn't leave the hotel to do any sightseeing since it was such a quick trip and we were all tired. We still however managed to get some interesting photos of which I will be posting through this coming week.

The above photo is a shot of downtown Culver City and was taken through the hotel room window. There were from what I could see many little strip malls and so many palm trees that you just felt like you should be drinking Mai Tai's and Chi Chi's. The weather was perfect as was the entire trip.

I wanted to get a shot of the Culver City sign for you so I snapped this while on the complimentary hotel shuttle back to LAX. Of course, when I snapped the shot there was no car in view. I obviously need a new camera with a faster speed :)

I will have much more including some photos an…

I'm Off To Culver City, CA

Photo courtesy of

I am off to Culver City, CA where I will be joining friends to include Carmen over at Carmen's Chronicles to see our dear friend Sony Holland performing at the Culver's Club for Jazz at the Radisson hotel. We will be eating, drinking and partying so no time to blog. I scheduled this post a few days in advance. It will be just like old times only in La La Land.

I'm not sure what sightseeing opportunities there are in Culver City but I will bring the old camera and see if I can come up with some interesting shots for you. I also don't know if the venue allows photos or video but since I will also be working for Sony the evening of the concert, I may be able to pull off a video.

I probably will not be back to work blogging until Monday. And, if I don't come back, don't look for me :D

A video to enjoy while I'm enjoying the real thing :)


Wordless Wednesday - McCoppin Park

McCoppin park is located in my neighborhood in the Sunset/Parkside district of San Francisco. I pass by this park all the time while running errands so I never have my camera with me. The other day I was perusing Craigslist when someone had asked for help in rescuing a husky. Basically this person lived in Napa, CA and while on two seperate trips here was walking her own dog in this park when she came upon what she called a "lost wounded husky." Long story short, she alerted the police who are located right across the street from the park who told her to call animal control. She did just that to no avail, they would not help her. So, she placed an ad on CL hoping for someone to help her.

I felt bad so I went to the park between rainstorms in order to locate this dog. I never did find him anywhere but I was able to get some good shots of trees and bushes while there. In hind sight, that was probably a stupid thing for me to do. I could have been walking right into s…

Blog Award from Mommy's Little Corner

First I want to thank Liz at Mommy's Little Corner for the above award. We are to list 10 things that make us happy and then extend the award to our favorite blogs. I have so many favorite blogs that to list them here would take up my whole page :D. So I want to extend the award to all of you who visit my blog, leave comments and drop on my EC and Adgitize widgets. You are all very much appreciated and all my favorites.

Now for 10 of my favorite things:

My family
My friends
Botanical Gardens
Hong Kong
Waffles, wine and chocolate
Blogging and creating

The need to make sense of such Darkness

This is a guest post by my dear friend Leonardo Minjarez. He is a wonderfully talented poet and photographer and I am so thrilled to have his work showcased here. Enjoy. If you would like more information on Leo and his work please contact me. Thanks.

The need to make sense of such Darkness
i will write and write
until my fingers bleed
and my heart has healed
(which ever comes first?)
for to hold back these torrents of thoughts
rain pierced my mind
and fester to sore my blackened heart
upon spikes of your smile
impaled by words you had spoken
and the touch of flesh encased with
crystalline sweat
and your eyes
oh your eyes
how could one forget?
the need to dive into the pools
of your soul
forever night
as i would gladly wrap myself among the folds
of darkness
and be led by the Devil himself
into a world of your eternal bliss.

To Love Is To Live

Ocean Beach in San Francisco
This is a guest post by my buddy Mitch Marcus. It is a raw, passionate and compelling poem. I want to thank Mitch for his contribution to my blog. You can visit his blog by clicking the link at the end of this poem. The photo above was taken by me at Ocean Beach in San Francisco. Enjoy!To Love Is To Live
I miss her so muchI will patiently wait for herFor the rest of timeI dream of redemptionOf receiving a short noteThat asksWill you come to me?Half way around this worldWill you come for me?Yes, I sayI will cross the oceansAnd ford the rivers I will come for youI will listen harderI will see clearerI will speak lessI will love moreAlthough that seems impossibleTo love anyone moreThan I love youThan I had loved youThan I will love youI miss her so muchSo much that I cry on a perfect dayI miss herAnd I will waitForever

After The Storm

Patches of blue after the storm, view from my back yard.

Storm clouds passing through the skies

Darkness after the storm. View from McCoppin Park in the Sunset District in San Francisco

The way the storms have been creeping up on us this past week, every little patch of blue is an opportunity to get out there and get some photos. Due to the rain I haven't even been able to get out to the gardens. Hopefully I can do that this coming week before I leave for Los Angeles. These photos were taken at a local district park in my neighborhood right after one of our many storms. Although dark and dreary looking the air was fresh and crisp though extremely cold. Sometimes dark can be very beautiful.

My New Website & PhotoScapes Unleashed Page

I wanted to go ahead and introduce all of you to my new website and PhotoScapes Unleashed page which I integrated onto my website. Though blogging is fun and a venue for my ongoing poetry and photographic pursuits, it is always nice to have a website presence as well. Any thoughts, ideas or suggestions are always appreciated. Here is the url to my PhotoScapes page
where you can also navigate through the website pages. I also have to mention that you can create Google sites for free and with no advertising on the pages. I added the AdSense and Adgitize. It is an easy to understand site building platform and you don't need to know html code. It's a breeze to setup and create.

Thanks and have a great weekend.

Red is... New Art Blog by Brittany Held

I wanted to introduce all of you today to a new art blog by Brittany Held (aka B.Held). She has a couple out there to include Artistic Amalgams which I also frequent. Her new blog is titled red is... and focuses on red artwork. I really love this idea and had the opportunity to submit a couple of my own red art photos to her for inclusion on her blog of which I profusely extend my heartfelt thanks to her.

On this new blog you'll find some fantastic "red pieces" as well as links to her other blogs and websites. I urge you to check out her other sites as well. Her artwork is so creative and unique. I love art in every form and I think art is the innermost expression of an artists' spirit just as it is for a writer and his or her words.

Click Here to visit Brittany's new blog

Thank you so much Brittany.

Sing Me Sweet

Photo taken @ The San Francisco Botanical Gardens

Sing Me Sweet
dedicated in memory of my Mom

Sing me sweet
to sleep

Sing me hope
to fly

Sing me dreams
to keep

your sweetest lullaby.


For those of you who know me well you know the obsession I have for waffles. I don't eat them on a regular basis because they are not the healthiest food in the world but I do treat myself at times and when I do I always eat way too much. I even plan my vacations around where waffles are being served. For my upcoming jaunt to Culver City in a little over a week, one of the first things I Googled was "waffles in Culver City." I was thrilled to find two spots right across street from the hotel. So, in keeping with the Become The Leaf inspiration, I've decided to become the waffle.


Come drown
yourself in buttery
softness, licking
syrupy maple
from my core.

Come devour
my crunchy
essence, biting
my sweet crevices
yearning for more.

Wordless Wednesday - DeYoung Museum Grounds

Stone Lion

Photo courtesy of

Is it just me or do Yul Brynner and the stone lion resemble each other?

Colorful Garden

Thank you to Juliana's Lair

I want to thank Juliana's Lair for awarding me a token prize in her latest contest. Please visit her blog which is a cornucopia of wonderful posts about life, travel and beyond. Click here to visit her website.

Compliments of Nature

Ocean Beach in San Francisco

Compliments of Nature

We'd compliment each other
You and I

As stars adorned evening skies
Light transcended beyond darkness

Hope became truth
Friendship ripened
Love was ours

The sun rose upon your smile
And set within your eyes

We complimented each other
You and I
For a while

Gold Hill Seasons

Photos taken at the Botanical Gardens in San Francisco.

This is a guest post by Taylor Graham who writes a "paradigm," which incorporates several different Japanese forms. I have to admit I never knew about this style. Thank you so much Taylor.


How does water know?
Spring is a mouth opening.

What does the earth say?
We carry our seeds of trees
and plant ourselves in new soil.

Crossing the dirt path,
a black bear steers by star-drift
and breeze off the hills.
What is hunger, what is home
to make the owl mourn?
River sluices yesterdays.

Her winter memories
are a silken pouch of words.
On the long-moon nights
what sharpens the heart’s small knife?
A dawn garden weeps with dew.

In spring the river
remembers its song from far
upcountry, held fast in snow.
Trees blossom out of their names,
we shed our cocoons.

The dark bird circles
a golden hilltop – its shade
crosses, passes. Gone.

Expectation Stew Simmers

Original photo taken of the Dale Chihuly exhibit @ The DeYoung Museum SF.

After photo edited with Ulead Software. I wanted something a little more fiery and angry to match the poem :)

I was going through some old poetry that I had written and found this piece I wrote about 15 years ago. I wrote it as a result of being furious after the guy I was dating at the time had made a date and never showed up or called.At that time I wasn't evolved as I am now :) and had high expectations of almost everyone and everything in my life. While the poem is rich in imagery and is well written, if I say so myself, I cannot help but be shocked at the anger it displays.

Since that time I've learned that people are just people. We all are diverse in our actions and feelings. Having expectations of another human being is basically saying to them that you are above them in some way and that they should adhere to your ego driven rules. In order to have peace and harmony in you relationships wheth…

Orange Sunset

Photo taken of Victoria Harbor in Hong Kong - March 2008

orange sunset
a tequila sunrise
at last call

Haiku and Senryu are highly creative and unique forms of poetic verse. There is the standard and most widely known 5/7/5 form and then there is the traditional Japanese form which is a bit difficult for me to explain so I will ask you to read the guide here over at Shadow Poetry.

I am still practicing writing Haiku and Senryu in the hopes that someday I will master the verse :) Haiku and Senryu for me is like painting a picture on canvas using words. It's fun and extremely challenging. Try it, it will broaden your horizons.


$1 Could Make A Difference

Photo courtesy of

The situation in Haiti following the devastating 7.0 earthquake is getting worse and worse each day. There are people trapped alive under concrete and buildings, there are the dead who are basically left on the streets, there is a diminishing supply of water and food as each minute goes by and rescue efforts by plane are being delayed due to no power, no air traffic control and nowhere for rescue planes to land. Thousands have died, thousands injured and thousands lost.

There is a massive relief effort being implemented by the White House and hundreds of thousands of dollars being donated by countries, major corporations and the general public. I heard Bill Clinton the other night speaking and he made a wonderful point in that every little bit helps. If each and every one of us gave just one dollar to the relief effort just imagine the difference it would make. I know many cannot afford anything in this economy but there is always something you can do.I…

Become The Leaf

Both photos taken at the Botanical Gardens in San Francisco

My high school creative writing instructor said three little words that have stayed with me throughout my writing life. He said "become the leaf." To put it in perspective, if when walking down the street or in a park you see a leaf, in order to adequately describe the leaf you must become the leaf. Simply describing its' color, where it resides or what it represents, is not enough. You have to embody the object you see to express poetic verse.

It is much easier to simply describe an object however when you allow yourself to become the object whether a person, place or thing, your writing takes on a whole new life and rises to a higher level. It is also much fun to take on another role when writing poetry.

My teacher at the time, Dennis Parlato, taught me the basics and allowed us to write freely and openly. He later became an actor and now regularly appears on Broadway. I remember years ago having my televi…

Photoscapes Unleashed - Downtown San Francisco

The Transamerica Pyramid building - Downtown San Francisco Original Photo

I edited with charcoal pencil. These photos were taken on an overcast and soon to be stormy day so the originals were very drab. I needed to add a little character.

The Bank of America Building - Downtown San Francisco Original Photo
This is where the film The Towering Inferno was shot.

I edited with warm color tones and a spotlight. It almost looks like the towering inferno with these colors.

Meet The Theo Saunders Quartet

Photo courtesy of

Vocalist Sony Holland will be in concert with the Theo Saunders Quartet on January 29th and February 5th. I had the pleasure of seeing Sony perform with the Theo Saunders quartet in October. They are stellar musicians and celebrities in their own right backing some of the best singers performing today. Click here for the link to my review of the Theo Saunders Quartet on Jo's Music Cafe blog.

Visit the Sony Holland blog.

Theo Saunders photo courtesy of

For more information on the Theo Saunders Quartet including some background on each player click Meet Theo Saunders and his Quartet

Video Below - Sony Holland & the Theo Saunders Quartet in concert at the Catalina Jazz Club in Hollywood.

Concert Venue and Information

Fri. Jan. 29, 2010

SONY HOLLAND / THEO SAUNDERS QUARTET (Theo Saunders, piano: Larry Koonse, guitar:
John B. Williams, bass: Tony Austin, drums)
2 Shows: 7:30 & 9:30pm
- No Cover Charge! -
@ the Culver&#…

The Neighborhood

Taken from Sutro Park - view of the Richmond DistrictSan Francisco

The Neighborhood

I walk
the shattered concrete
time elapsing
memories a dense fog
I try to wipe dry.

I pass
the same house
sitting bare, dark
shrouded with shadows

I visit
the old library
growing thin

I search
for Plath, Angelou, Ferlinghetti
and find
the idiot's guide to computers
a treasure lost

I cry
the poignant tear
for what was
and what remains
do I still belong?

Top Entrecard Droppers

Pier 39 Sea Lion Party Postponed

Thanks to Karen at
I found out that the party has been postponed because the guests of honor are not there. They are waiting until they return to throw a huge bash. You can read the story by Clicking Here on the Pier 39 website.

Thanks for letting me know Karen, I was planning to be there that day.

The Publishing Maven

While wandering through the blogs I follow I came across a contest on The Publishing Maven which was giving away a package of books geared towards helping authors self publish their works. Of course it was during that time when I was on a roll winning contests and lo and behold I won.

The published author of the above book who is also the author of The Publishing Maven blog sent me seven books related to writing and self publishing. The wealth of information contained in these books is nothing short of astounding. I have just begun reading The Step-By-Step Guide to Self-Publishing for Profit by Christy Pinheiro. It is one of the most detailed books on self publishing I've read. I will be posting a review once I have finished the book. For now, though, I just want to again thank Christy for these books and point all of you towards her blog which is a wonderfully written site on the ins and outs of writing and publishing. So please, go take a look. I learn so much from readi…

An Afternoon With Cher

Yes, we had an afternoon of entertainment with Cher yesterday. I have been wanting to get a bird, specifically a yellow canary for months. I have found many I like however they are all too expensive. So, my cousin and I went to the local pet shop after a late brunch yesterday to check out the birds and critters they have available. They had one yellow canary with which I fell in love and many parakeets which I also enjoyed. The star of the show however was Cher which you can see in the above video. She was a constant source of entertainment while we were there. I always feel a bit strange taking videos in a store so this is a short clip but it still is hilarious. The canary below is the only one they had and very expensive so I could not afford to buy him right now.

The parakeet cage was full with at least a dozen or more parakeets. There were a couple of them that I really liked. We watched while they were showing off with some upside down acrobatics and just basically playi…

Anniversary of the Sea Lions' Arrival @ Pier 39

First and foremost, I am thrilled to report that there are about a dozen sea lions as you can see in the above photo who have returned to the docks at Pier 39. Now that is quite short of the hundreds that have been there for 20 years but it's a good sign that they have returned. The wayward injured sea lion was found at Monterey Bay though due to weather conditions etc... it was too dangerous to chase the lion in order to care for him so he again got away. The mystery still remains as to where all the sea lions have gone but as of now, their anniversary party is still planned for the 15th. I do plan to be there to join in the festivities. Details below.

Anniversary of the Sea Lions' Arrival

Friday, January 15, 2010
10:00 AM to 5:00 PM
PIER 39 commemorates the 20th anniversary of the sea lions’ arrival at PIER 39. Through the years, California sea lions have taken over PIER 39’s K-Dock to the delight of spectators. Each January, these marine mammals return in droves for herrin…

Iditarod Dreams

Photo courtesy of Sabrina's Mom & Dad
Iditarod Dreams
for SabrinaGentle whispers
she hears
the call of the wild
as distant echoes

A snowflake quilt
warms her
and weaves quiet

Paws rooted
within Mother earth
her playground

Yellowstone geysers
to Malibu white sands
she travels
gently through life

her navigator
her soul

A Knowing

Hawks vs Squirrels in Walnut Creek

I took these photos at the Botanical Gardens in San Francisco

I wanted to share with you a story I heard on the news this evening. It's about a squirrel population in Walnut Creek, California where the residents are upset over the sudden influx of squirrels. They state that the squirrels are eating everything and anything in their gardens, they are ruining the infrastructure and are basically being a nuisance. So, to rid the community of the squirrels they have decided to lure hawks to the area with raptor perches so that the hawks can perch above the area in order to hunt their prey - the squirrels.

Now I understand the problem but I absolutely do not agree with this solution. I think it's inhumane and just plain wrong. Your thoughts?

You can see the full story with video by clicking the link below.

See The Video & Read The Entire Story Here

Love Sense

I wrote this poem a while ago and hope you enjoy the words and message.

speaks in silence
the unconditional
stanzaic interlude
between heart and soul.
Never wanting
always waiting
to give freely
and openly.

does not see color
nor stereotypical
ego branded persona.
As spirit seer
pure love
accepts all
with understanding
and patience.

hears beyond sound
soft whispers
of heartstrings
playing in rhythm
the quiet song -
a deafening simplicity
defining uniqueness
to authentic self.

tastes the sweet n sour
of daily imperfections
savoring the bitter
with the sweet.
The perfect blend
providing nourishment
for the heart
digesting the mix.

smells indifference
and recoils at the
nauseous self righteous
stench of the arrogant
yet embraces the
empowering odor
of forgiveness -
a scent of healing.

touches softly
hearts who hear,
minds who see,
spirits who know
the freedom to give
inherent deep within
our soul
without expectation -


The Myspace Rant

On the heels of my last airline rant, I know I said that I would keep my rants to a minimum but I have to rant on Myspace. I hardly ever go to Myspace anymore. Every once in a while though, I'll have a post from my blog that I like to post the link on the Myspace bulletins and blog. However it does seem to be a waste of time because no one ever goes there anymore and Myspace gets so few clicks that it doesn't even show up on my blog stats.

I decided to go there today and check on some older posts. To my complete shock, horror and dismay, when I clicked the link to my blogs both on my blog page at Myspace and the bulletins area I found this message below:

Sorry, you have reached a link that is no longer accessible due to one or more of the following:-A reported spammer site-A reported Phishing Site: A site designed to trick the user into giving up user name and passwords.-A site which contains malware-A site that currently contains a lot of spam-The user entered HTML syntax …

The Not So Friendly Skies

I normally do not like to use this blog for my rants. However since I usually just rave, what is one little rant now and then. Of course this is the second time I've complained about the airlines on this blog so I'll just continue the series.

As many of you know, I'll be going to Culver City the end of this month to see Sony perform with the Theo Saunders quartet. I booked the trip way in advance as soon as I heard she would be performing there. I got a great fare with Virgin America at $39.00 each way. So, I will fly down on the 29th and return on the 30th.

Those of you who know me well, know that the Grammy awards are an event for me each year. I usually attend a Grammy's party and enjoy the show. Well I didn't even think about the awards when I booked my trip to LA. The show is usually in February so I didn't even think about it until today when I saw online that the show was going to be held at the Staples center on the 31st. I immediately went to t…

Sea Lion Update - Two Found Injured

Well I am not happy at all with what I just heard and saw on the news. Two sea lions were found injured by Pier 39 and Hyde Street Pier. The lions had fishing lines tied around their necks which caused serious wounds. I saw photos of them but did not want to post them here as they are too upsetting.

As a result, this tells me that there was fowl play in their disappearance. See my previous post here. Fisherman and swimmers at the Hyde Street Pier months ago were furious over the lions showing up in the area. It sickens me to hear and see this however we still don't know if they just left the docks on their own or were all forced or injured by people who didn't want them around.

I will definitely keep you all updated on this story.

Pier 39 Sea Lions Vanish?

I took both the photo and video about a year ago down at Pier 39

Just as quickly as they appeared twenty years ago along the docks @ Pier 39, our beloved sea lions have vanished overnight. What use to be a flock of hundreds of barking lions are now down to a mere half dozen. It's been a mystery and everyone is scratching their heads. The sea lions feed on herring during the Winter months and due to a shift in water currents etc... it is believed that their food source has vanished leaving them to find their food elsewhere. It has been reported in recent months that many swimmers and fisherman in the area do not like the lions treading on their space. As a result, no one really knows what has happened to our major source of tourist dollars.

The sea lions are one of the top tourist attractions in San Francisco and attract people to Pier 39 all year long. If not for the sea lions, especially during the Winter months, how will retail survive and more importantly, what is a tourist …

A Poetry Listing of Terms

Photo courtesy of

There are so many different terms we need to know as poets and writers that I thought I would list a few here in hopes that it may help you with your writing and publishing endeavors.Acknowledgments Page - A page in a poetry book or chapbook which lists the publications where the works were originally published.Anthology - A collection of poetry or writings by several different artists. Bio - A biographical statement that many publishers request with submissions. Camera Ready - Poems which are submitted exactly as they are to appear in print. Chapbook - A small collection of poetry set in a book of 20 to 40 pages. Contributor’s Copy - A copy of the magazine where a poet’s work appears and is given as payment to the author. Cover Letter - An introductory letter sent along with a poet’s submission to a publisher. Digest Sized - A 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 sized publication.Ezine - A magazine published online. Galleys - The first typeset version of a poem, ma…