Saturday, March 17, 2018

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By ddmw

A Porsche; a mistress; a new gym membership; a holiday home in Spain; a move to the countryside; a new career, perhaps as a herbalist or a bee-keeper. What do each of these things have in common? They are each a potential knee-jerk reaction to a mid-life crisis. But what is a mid-life crisis, and why do we have them?

It is all too easy in modern life to “go with the flow” - to simply put up with whatever situation you find yourself in, irrespective of whether it suits you or whether it makes you happy. Few people are prepared to challenge themselves by moving to a new city or... Read More

I’m not saying you’re targeting my car. I imagine you’re ticketing every car in your prevue whenever you can, but it just seems like my vehicle gets ticketed while other offending cars right next to mine seem to consistently avoid the similar penalty. I know, it sounds like I’m whining and maybe I am, but it’s becoming more and more evident that you people must lie in wait to slap tickets on my windshield with great dexterity and incredible timing. You’re either super human or it’s a conspiracy.

I’m mad at the world, I guess, and meter maids in particular. But, that’s a knee jerk reaction,... Read More

Being continuously attacked by aggressive advertising is quite overwhelming when you first arrive in the US. What’s even more amazing is the fact that spinning reality does seem to work. There are dozens of such examples. Here I bring a few:The first is a true copy of a note I saw in one of the government offices in Connecticut. I just wonder what crossed the mind of the person who ordered this notice:

Fraudulent activity is illegal.

I saw the second ad on the train. It was euphemistic, so like the new version of the bible, I allowed myself to rewrite the ad in everyday words,... Read More

I wanted to bring my dog into a grocery store in Pacific Heights in San Fran for just a minute. I didn’t see any sign that said “don’t bring in your dog”. As soon as I walked in, they jumped on me like a pack of rabid wolves. “No dogs allowed.” “Take your dog out of here.” And they weren’t nice. I felt like a second-class citizen and all I wanted was a quart of milk and a free-range chicken.

Dog owners wrestle with this issue all the time. Last month we addressed the “tethering situation” and most everyone agreed that it’s a bad idea. So, now the logical progression is to discuss the... Read More

The City, she blankets us all and provides without judgment. We shape her even as we are shaped by her. Statues to our victors and fallen become part of our city as she molds the minds of our children. Crayons in hand, they draw dreams of firemen, plumbers, and peacocks at the zoo.

Our City has grit, rhythm, and a hustling hostility that drives many to pray, many others to sin. Smoking, drinking, gambling, betting on sports. Sports of men and animals, thinking ourselves civilized as we attend opera and concerts.

Glamor and glitz of our greed living side by side with our lights... Read More

Living without a car in Los Angeles poses many challenges and adventures. In my opinion since mostly ditching my car over a year ago I've come to appreciate the vast cultural diversity of this sprawling region on a different level. Walking, biking and taking mass transit has opened up new worlds that I would have been blinded to if I only drove.

As a Westsider with a car who chooses to keep it parked in my apartment garage where its tail pipe can do no harm to the environment and its gas tank can do no harm to my wallet, I've often thought of the millions of Angelenos who have no choice... Read More

I am a big believer in public transportation. Mostly the subway, sometimes [not often] the bus. Whenever I can realistically ditch my car, I will. Yes, sometimes my fellow riders smell funny or scratch themselves or speak in funny languages I can't understand. But other times, my encounters are more revealing in other ways. Occasionally, I'm touched by the snapshots of life I'm able to observe and those people that fleetingly pass through my day. Here's one from awhile back:

Midlife Crisis on the Orange Line

Another stop. The doors open. A Latino man sits next to me. He is of... Read More

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