Christmas Snowflakes

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Hey there!

 

 

It’s the time of year that I so look forward to. The Decking of the Halls, and trees, and anything else I can string lights across and hang ornaments from. This year’s new additions are the foam snowflakes I found at my local .99 cents store.

What are your favorite pre-Christmas Day activities?

 

 

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Peace be with you.

 

~ K. L. Parry ~

Author of The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom

 

 

 

 

 

BAD AMC, BAD

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Sorry for my absence, it has been a busy couple of weeks. So, let me give you a brief run down on what I’ve been up to.

Movies; time traveling sci-fy with Bruce Willis in Loopers. How would you react if you were faced with the task of executing your future self? Creative and entertaining. I don’t know why this film got negative reviews. I can only assume that those who didn’t like it, don’t enjoy science-fiction. Probably out of theaters at this point, look for the DVD release for home viewing.

Skyfall with Daniel Craig as bad boy, 007. A salute to 50 years of Bond. I thought this was an awesome flick despite the extremely uncomfortable distraction of a freezing theater. I mean, really frickin’ cold. I had a sweater on and 20 minutes into the movie I had to slip into my coat and was still freezing. And, no need to worry about the baby seated next to me, once the movie started his own mother wouldn’t have been able to hear him cry due to the excessively loud volume that seems to be the norm for this set of theaters. Seriously, I’ve been to rock concerts that were quieter. AMC 16 in Burbank, California, SHAME ON YOU for such poor customer consideration. Despite the convenience of your location, I’ve decided to seek another venue to re-visit this movie and view future flicks. One that is not an AMC Theater.

Make it a Misfits marathon. Which is what I did this last weekend thanks to the Hulu Plus streaming through my son’s Playstation. The British comedy, horror, drama, sci-fy didn’t impress me with Season 1 until I viewed the last few episodes which baited me into watching Season 2. Then I was hooked. This series is for mature audiences only and always ends up with at least one gruesome death per episode. Some of the characters are a little difficult to understand and there are quite often cheeky references that are lost on me. But, despite that, I find most of the story lines engaging. Misfits is dark, twisted, clever and sometimes surprisingly shocking for this puritanical American. Just started watching Season 3. Can’t wait to see what’s in-store for my favorite characters.

Food; The SmokeHouse Restaurant located across the street from Warner Brothers Studios in Burbank. 4420 W. Lakeside Drive. This old school steak house still fits the bill when I’m craving a nice piece of red meat, just don’t order the twice baked potatoes… terrible.  Here’s a little history on this establishment taken directly from its web page.

Established in 1946, The SmokeHouse was built at the end of WWII and is one of the few L.A. restaurants still in existence from that era.

The original restaurant was located at the corner of Pass and Riverside avenue and seated 46 people and was enjoyed by local luminaries like Bob Hope and Bing Crosby. Jim Stockton was the promoter and front man for the restaurant with Jack Monroe as the head cook. The Smokehouse was so successful and packed with customers that they soon began looking for a new building. In 1949 the Smokehouse moved to its current location. Built beside the world famous Warner Brothers lot in Burbank, California, the SmokeHouse is a favorite hang out for actors, producers, and anyone else in the industry. In the 60’s it was common to come in for lunch and find the place filled with costumed cowboy and indian extras having lunch.

Let me not forget Thanksgiving!  What kind of a holiday gathering be it without someone going off like Mt. Vesuvius, hum?

Once again it was a veritable feast of comfort foods with the family gather for a late dinner at sister, Cindy’s house. My turkey looked a “work-of-art” and everything was moving along perfectly until I burned the buttered almonds for my Green Bean Almondine. Then it spiraled down from there as exhaustion and an aggravated shoulder injury had me teetering on my last nerve. It only took a few of the men folk to question a simple request, to set me off. I exploded, uncontrollably, in what can only be described as a “South Park” moment, the top of my head blowing-off  like an erupting volcano, spewing forth sarcastic remarks and obscenities.

 

Thank goodness, sister Cindy saved the day by having us immediately perform “The Thanksgiving Feast Song”  http://youtu.be/2BZcSDY70IA

I have provided a link to the video for your amusement. You may have to copy and paste. Enjoy!

 

My Webber BBQ roasted/smoked turkey

Whew!!!! What a ride!

Until next week, buy  “Made in USA”

~ K.L. Parry, author of The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom.

 

Listen up!

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It’s two days, post-election here in the states and already the name calling has me sick. Point the finger here and there. Complain, complain.

 

Listen up, my fellow Americans! Put your parties aside and take some personal responsibility for the state of the union.

 

You, me, we are all to blame for our country’s woes. We have, and many still do, live beyond their actual means. We spend more than we’ve earned. Yet, we cry out about the national debt and over spending by Congress when the average American household holds almost $16,000.00 in credit card debt alone.

 

We’ve bought homes we couldn’t afford just because someone said they’d give us a loan to do so. And, many of us lived off the equity, refinancing our homes every time the property values went up, to the point of owing more than what the properties were worth. Then when the equity was exhausted and the property values fell, (as they do because it is a continues cycle), we walked away, leaving the lenders and their investors with our debt.

 

We have driven industry away because we don’t want to pay the higher cost of goods manufactured by U.S. companies that adhere to our mandated fair wage and safe work place practices. Let’s not forget the taxes we seem happy to levy on any U.S. business that has managed to turn a profit. And, because we have driven industry away, so too have we eliminated the jobs that industry once provided.

 

We won’t take advantage of our own natural resources, preferring dependence on foreign sources. Thus, allowing them to influence not only our economy but also our policies.

 

We scream “No Socialism” when talk of healthcare reform comes up!  Yet we support the Unions that demand the same for every employee regardless of individual job performance. What are Unions but socialistic entities.

 

Yet, many Americans do seem to feel entitled to things they didn’t earn. They’ve filed frivolous lawsuits in hope of pay offs and often times, have gotten it, driving up the cost of Insurance across the board. While others see no problem with maxing out credit cards to live a large lifestyle, only to file for bankruptcy when they’ve reached their credit limits. Then, they start the game over with little, to no actual repercussion.

 

Open up your eyes, citizens. It’s past time we should have seen where decades of  a “ME” mentality would land us. Well, it’s here.

 

If you must point the finger, point it at yourself, then ask what you, as an individual can do to turn this country around. You can start by simply reading the manufacturer’s label before you have the cashier charge your credit card. Make sure it reads, “Made in the USA”.

In closing, I’d like to thank you for allowing me to express my views. It was something I really needed to get off my chest and am feeling much better for it. That having been said, you can look forward to something much lighter in next week’s post.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

~ K. L. Parry ~ Author of  The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom. A High Seas Adventure

 

 

 

 

West Hollywood Halloween Extravaganza

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Boo! Just as a warning, I am on my second glass of wine…muhaaaaaa!

Guess where I spent my All Hallows Eve?

 

Ah, forget the guessing. I’ll tell you. On the streets of West Hollywood at the craziest, rockin’est Halloween Party ever!

Here is where I was going to give you a little history on the carnival.

Not! Couldn’t find any. But what I can say is that this party is one of the largest, if not the “most attended on one single evening” festivals of its kind. Seriously, I thought we had arrived at the festival until my friend Jamie and I actually arrived at the festival.

On a personal note. Thank you Jamie for allowing me to talk you into this craziness and indulging me on this adventure.

From babies in backpacks to geriatric in wheel chairs, every nationality, gay, straight and in-between could be found in attendance of this annual event hosted by the City of West Hollywood. I thought all the hype was more urban legend than fact but it was more than I had ever imagined. And, it was awesome. The electric energy created by so many gathered in one place for the sole purpose of expressing their alter egos was mind-blowing. I felt ALIVE! A phrase I actually yelled out from the crowd that had gathered in front of the main stage. We were all bouncing to some unrecognized Techno tune spinning out from one of the featured DJ’s. For a moment I was transported back to my youth and the memory of an outdoor concert at some forgotten location. I was pressed in amongst hundreds, our bodies vibrating from the base, moving to the music.

Let me regress. It was kind of a last-minute decision to attend this carnival. I really can’t say what made me think of it but I got it in my head that I wanted to go. And, my first choice to accompany me was the only person I thought I’d be able to talk into it, my very dear friend Jamie. But when I made that phone call he sounded a little hesitant. Still, I was persistent, promising him an adventure and, Oh boy!, did I deliver on that! Yea, and I wanted to dress up too because I had this great costume, but I got the Kibosh on that, it was a no go.

I did have to work that day so I didn’t get home until 8:00 pm. The festival started at 6:00 but it went until 11:00 so I figured we’d still have plenty of time there.  I navigated us through Hollywood via the side streets I’d remembered traveling during my clubbing days in the late seventies. That worked well enough until I had Jamie turn onto Santa Monica Boulevard. YIKES! There we sat in gridlock while his classic, air cooled, Porsche  911 heated up. A half hour later we’d made it to the first intersection, one quarter of a block. We turned off and headed back up, to Sunset strip. The Pink Taco was our first official stop as we let “Baby” cool down and re-thought our plans on where we would find parking. By the way, good ceviche, Pink Taco.

Back on the road, Crescent Heights and Melrose. Behind Fred Siegel‘s. $20.00 got us a parking spot. Without even asking, the attendant points towards Santa Monica Blvd. “15 minute walk”.

Right! A 15 minute walk if you have the speed and the size of a small 12 year old and can dodge between the solid mass of people clogging the same sidewalk you’re on.

But, just the walk itself was so interesting. I hated that we were all passing each other so quickly that I couldn’t get a good look at the costumes. At time I was seriously feeling over stimulated. It was just ridicules trying to take it all in…, visually.

So, this is where I stop and the pictures begin.

Yea, and once again a disclaimer. I am not a photographer! And, to really bring this point home, sometimes I don’t have my camera on the right setting. (Like I knew there was more than one.)

Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice! Not the first we met on our way to the carnival but the best in costume.

A solo Ghost Buster I stopped along the five block walk to the festival.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hookin’ up with Charlie admits the crowd on Santa Monica.

There were warnings all over about buying from unlicensed hot dog vendors. But they sure look good!

 

Ran into Cher and Kiss as they were leaving the festival.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

La Cienega Blvd and Santa Monica Blvd

 

The man of the hour and fellow adventurer, Jamie. You are über awesome! And, still walking.

Freaky! But we’ve arrived!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The crowd is just unbelievable. It’s like this for blocks. Not for the claustrophobic!

After bouncing to the DJ I was off to the port-a-potties where I ran into this lovely lady.

 

Then I met up with this flamboyant pair.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And, of course, what party would be complete without a visit from the original party go-ers, Adam and Eve.

 

There was entertainment at several locations, and bands, along with DJ’s and so many great costumes. There was just no way for me to photograph them all. Really, physical impossibility, there was no way! But I hope the pictures I have posted will give you some idea of just what a bitchin party it was.

 

“Next year. You take the day off, dress up and we get here before 6:00 pm.”  That’s what Jamie said.

 

Hope everyone had a great Halloween! Until next week.

~ K.L. Parry ~ Author of The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom

 

 

 

What’s His Name

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What’z up!

Funny story.

 

A couple of days ago a guy that I’d gone out with a year or so ago, showed up at the bar where I work. He kept addressing me as “Miss”. Well, this led me to believe that he’d forgotten my name. I was insulted!  So, I thought I’d call him out on it. That is, until I realized I couldn’t. I’d forgotten his name.

Ha, ha!

Didn’t like that? Well, I promise to have something better to write about next week.

Until then  ;)

~ K. L. Parry ~ Author of The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom as seen on ABC Family’s Pretty Little Liars.

Becoming QUEEN

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In 1979, while attending community college, I was invited to a concert at the L.A. Forum. The band that performed that night was QUEEN.

A couple of nights ago, I was reminded of that “off the charts” concert when I sat down to watch a 2004 documentary titled, Becoming Queen.

The film begins with childhood images of band members, working its way along a time-line by way of stills and personal interviews of previous band mates along with other music professionals that were close to the band. It’s not until halfway through, that we get to see the live action of taped performances that really capture the outstanding vocal and performance quality of these four uniquely and undoubtedly supremely gifted individuals.

Now, I wouldn’t consider myself a Doc. watcher but I’d love to have this one on DVD for my private collection. I highly recommend it.

You can view the documentary Becoming QUEEN on Hulu Plus and for FREE at http://www.snagfilms.com/films/title/becoming_queen

I must confess this. For as much as I’ve raved about Led Zeppelin, (in a blog post that I re-blogged just last week), I’ve actually owned more QUEEN albums. And, still do…!

“A concert is not a live rendition of our album. It’s a theatrical event.” Freddy Mercury

Until next week. ROCK ON !

~ K.L. Parry ~ Author of The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom