November 2008

Took some pix last SAturday while waiting in line to pick up extra copies of the LA Times. One was picked up by Now Public web news service.

The rest are on Flickr.


To my award-winning story (ha!)

Big thanks to editor Darcy. Love her.

Now have some fun!

Technically, this isn’t an Altadena story. Oh no, this topic crosses all geographic boundaries.

And I just won a little journalism award for it. Here’s a jpeg. I’ll have a link to an online version shortly.

Consider this the, uh, teaser…



My father fought in WWII as a pilot of a B-24 based in Pickenham, England. He flew 19 missions over Germany from the end of 1944 until the end of the war. He was a handsome devil, nicknamed “Smiley.” He became a pilot for United Air Lines and served on accident investigation teams.

He would have been 85 on the day we elected Barack Obama president, and he wouldn’t have liked it. He was old school Republican, sometimes talking Libertarian, and predicted in the early 1970s that the world was going to hell and quickly, too. He couldn’t stand government intervention. He drew his own comic strip, By the Numbers, in which no one had a name. Would he be appalled today about what has just happened to the financial structure of our country? You betcha.  

But today, a salute to his service and what he and millions of others did to ensure that we had the freedom to be our best, or screw things up completely. I can only hope that we find the new direction we need.

I’ll post pictures tonight.

By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN: And so it came to pass that on Nov. 4, 2008, shortly after 11 p.m. Eastern time, the American Civil War ended, as a black man Barack Hussein Obama won enough electoral votes to become president of the United States. A civil war that, in many ways, began at Bull Run, Virginia, on July 21, 1861, ended 147 years later via a ballot box in the very same state. For nothing more symbolically illustrated the final chapter of Americas Civil War than the fact that the Commonwealth of Virginia the state that once exalted slavery and whose secession from the Union in 1861 gave the Confederacy both strategic weight and its commanding general voted Democratic, thus assuring that Barack Obama would become the 44th president of the United States. This moment was necessary, for despite a century of civil rights legislation, judicial interventions and social activism despite Brown v. Board of Education, Martin Luther Kings I-have-a-dream crusade and the 1964 Civil Rights Act the Civil War could never truly be said to have ended until Americas white majority actually elected an African-American as president. That is what happened Tuesday night and that is why we awake this morning to a different country. The struggle for equal rights is far from over, but we start afresh now from a whole new baseline. Let every child and every citizen and every new immigrant know that from this day forward everything really is possible in America.


And if you want to understand clearly what is happening with our environment, read Friedman’s new book, “Hot, Flat, and Crowded.” He spoke at Caltech last week and brilliantly sums up the crisis we’re facing.

In spite of having a bout with the flu at the moment, I made it to vote with my husband today at Loma Alta Park. We were lucky that our address meant our voting area was in the back of the room. There was no line. Those who had to vote in the front of the building weren’t so lucky, with a line of 25 or so at 10:45 a.m.  Why it was divided like that I’m not sure.

Thinking I’d be in line for at least a half-hour, I joined Ben & Jerry’s, Starbucks, Krispy Kreme and Los Gringos Locos by bringing some leftover Halloween candy to hand out. Got a few takers who appreciated the offer. Hey, I’ll even give you some free candy if you get out and vote!