Saturday, January 31, 2009

Best of Westwood

Here is my list of personal favorites: 

Yamato (1/2 off after 5 pm)
Damon and Pythias (also a great happy hour)
Good Earth (great for Brunch or Brinner)
Ami's (great deal now that they also do 1/2 off on sushi, but I prefer Yamato when I am feeling adventurous) 

Palomino (if you can get a table)
Westwood Brewing Company (BrewCo)

Mr. Noodle (ask for a free drink if delivery & over $10)

Grocery Store
Trader Joe's (Currently my overall favorite place in Westwood)

Cup of Coffee:
Pete's Coffee (On Westwood Blvd. Closes a little too early)
Starbucks (I love sitting outside by the lights of the Mann Village)


Study Spot:
Corner Bakery (Refills on different coffees and a yummy muffin)

Favorite Movie Theatre:

Haircut Spot
Oakley's Barber Shop
La Belle Hair Salon

Least Favorite Place in Westwood
Course Reader Materials (what a shady place)

I know I am missing a couple of places. What are your favorites?

Friday, January 30, 2009

Coachella Lineup

oachella just announced their lineup. It looks really good this year. I'm tempted to go, but I've never been before and it seems like a hassle to figure out lodging and stuff. Is anyone considering going? 

Bands I would be most excited to see:
Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band
Franz Ferdinand
Los Campesinos!
Girl Talk
Paul McCartney
Silversun Pickups
The Hold Steady
The Ting TIngs

Amanda Palmer
Blitzen Trapper
Fleet Foxes
Henry Rollins
The Killers
TV on the Radio

Antony and the Johnsons
Jenny Lewis
My Bloody Valentine
No Age
Okkervil River
Public Enemy
The Cure
The Gaslight Anthem
Yeah Yeah Yeah's

Political Ads

Example of a good political ad (will air during Super Bowl in Illinois)

"In a 15-candidate Democratic primary field for Rahm Emanuel’s Congressional seat, it can be tough to get noticed...The ad was produced by famed political adman Bill Hillsman, who is responsible for the late Sen. Paul Wellstone’s memorable ads that propelled him to an upset Senate victory in Minnesota."

Example of a terrible political ad

Shouldn't a former Lieutenant Governor have something better to run on than losing a few pounds?

Thursday, January 29, 2009


At dinner tonight, my friend told me a two hour story about her lying cheating (now ex-)boyfriend. It was pretty ridiculous and I felt truly sorry for her. She's such a great girl. And the story just kept getting worse and worse, with him finally admitting that he cheated on her (twice). It ended with this classic text message exchange:

Her: Thank you for being honest with me.
Him: You deserve the truth. FYI, the Chevron on Westwood pump 5 is broken so it gives a full tank for like 15 dollars. 

What a great choice for the very last words to end a 3-year relationship. 

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Disconcerting list. I can't believe that I ever ordered an Awesome Blossom.

Instead, Consider Trying Some of My Favorite Snacks at Trader Joe's:
  • Whole wheat naan bread with Tzatziki
  • Plain greek yogurt, fresh blueberries, and mixed berry granola
  • Papaya mango salsa with sea salt pita chips
  • Brown Rice Sushi
  • Greek Salad (reduced fat)
  • Whole Grain Blueberry Instant Oatmeal
  • Slices of peppered turkey w/ reduced fat smoked gouda cheese & crackers

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Vinyl, CDs and a Credit Card

I love the way true music fans can write about stuff like compression on CDs. Music industry vet Bob Lefsetz:
I felt the audiophile CD.  But it wasn’t warm.  It was a silicone tit, not the real thing.  Real boobs sag.  The girls think we hate this. Along with stretchmarks and that roll of fat around their middle.  Whereas this makes girls real.  They’re built with a higher percentage of body fat.  They’re made to give birth, to nurture.  Who’d want to sleep with a ten year old boy?  A STARVING ten year old boy?

A woman built for themedia orders a salad and picks at it.  A real woman savors her food, she evidences sensuality.  Something that’s hard to see, but all men pick up on.  The same way it’s hard to quantify why vinyl sounds so much better than CDs.  You just FEEL IT!

I am still trying to decide on what rewards credit card to get. I don't spend a whole lot on credit cards, so I hear I should go for a cash back instead of miles or points. Any suggestions?

I am also a little proud of myself because I almost just spent $75 on 5 signed CDs, but I decided to hold off and think about other things I can do with that money before I make an impulse buy. It is still a little tempting though. The bands were: Los Campesinos!, Lydia, Jenny Lewis, Ting Tings, Okkervil River. I almost got Cold War Kids too. 

Monday, January 26, 2009

Dinner and a Movie?

Next time I'm in Santa Monica, I'm going to Copa d'Oro

Darkly lit, mid-sized, and Old World-detailed, Copa's a menu-less cocktail emporium dedicated to making exclusive-to-you drinks. Barkeeps are expertly trained to pinpoint your poison by querying on things like basic taste (sweet/sour/bitter), fruity (orange, mango, blackberry, etc)/not (not), and obviously base booze.

Ingredients are fresh from the Santa Monica Farmer's Market, from fruits to rosemary and wasabi, as well as specialty juices (pomegranate, pear, etc) and sodas (Granny Smith apple, raspberry). Drink Menu.

3D Sex and Zen

Shooting will begin in April on what's being billed as the world's first 3-D erotic film. "Just imagine that you'll be watching it as if you were sitting beside the bed," the producer told the South China Morning Post. "There will be many close-ups. It will look as if the actresses are only a few centimeters from the audience."

Stuck in my head alllll day:

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Good with the Bad

I love Google: 14,000 Megapixel Works of Art

And I am losing faith in humanity:

Is this really necessary? Add boob jiggle to any photo on your iphone 

Recommendation: Watch the 1976 movie Network (stream it in better quality on Netflix if you subscribe). Then watch the pilot of Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. Network is among my favorite films and I love the parallels Aaron Sorkin creates on this episode of Studio 60. 

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

News Update

How to Understand Big Numbers: "But that similarity trips us up when it comes time to imagine how those figures translate to the real world, where three more zeroes make all the difference. "My favorite way to think of it is in terms of seconds," says David Schwartz, a children's book author whose How Much Is A Million? tries to wrap young minds around the concept. "One million seconds comes out to be about 11 and a half days. A billion seconds is 32 years. And a trillion seconds is 32,000 years. I like to say that I have a pretty good idea what I'll be doing a million seconds from now, no idea what I'll be doing a billion seconds from now, and an excellent idea of what I'll be doing a trillion seconds from now." "But that similarity trips us up when it comes time to imagine how those figures translate to the real world, where three more zeroes make all the difference. "My favorite way to think of it is in terms of seconds," says David Schwartz, a children's book author whose How Much Is A Million?

The Economist on Darwinism: Long but great read. Example: 

The murder of children, too, can be explained evolutionarily. On the face of things it makes no sense to kill the vessels carrying your genes into the next generation. And, indeed, that is not what usually happens. But sociologists failed to notice this. It was not until Dr Daly and Dr Wilson began researching the field that it was discovered that a child under five is many times more likely to die an unnatural death in a household with a stepfather present (whether or not that relationship has been formalised by law) than if only biological parents are there.

In this, humans follow a pattern that is widespread in mammals: male hostility to a female’s offspring from previous matings. In some species, such as lions and langurs, this results in deliberate infanticide. In humans things not are always as brutal and explicit. But neglect and a low threshold of irritation at the demands of a dependent non-relative can have the same effect.

Intriguingly, though, if a genetic parent is the killer it is often the mother. Infanticidal mothers are usually young. A young mother has many years of potential reproduction ahead of her. If circumstances do not favour her at the time (perhaps the father has deserted her) the cost to her total reproductive output of bringing up a child may exceed the risk of killing it. Not surprisingly, maternal infanticide is mainly a crime of poor, single women.

What's In the $550 Billion Stimulus Plan

Saturday, January 10, 2009

The Emanuel Brothers

You should recognize the name Rahm Emanuel by now. He's about to be Obama's Chief of Staff. However, it wasn't until my friend Andrey started to tell me about his brother Ezekiel Emanuel that I realized how interesting of a family the Emanuel's are. 

Ezekiel EmanuelChair of the Department of Bioethics at The Clinical Center of the National Institutes of Health. He received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School and his Ph.D. in political philosophy from Harvard University, and often writes about reforming our current health care system.

Ari Emanuel: Inspiration for the Character of Ari Gold on the show Entourage and Bob Odenkirk's character, Stevie Grant, on The Larry Sanders Show.
He represents Martin Scorsese, Jennifer Garner, Jessica Alba, Reese Witherspoon, Larry David, Michael Moore, Jude Law, Matt Damon, Vin Diesel, Sacha Baron Cohen, Aaron Sorkin, Mark Wahlberg and many more. 

For Entourage Fans: "The fictional Ari Gold's renegade style is, at least, based on fact: In March 1995, Emanuel and three other International Creative Management agents were caught plotting to start their own agency. When an assistant was discovered removing company files, ICM Chairman Jeff Berg promptly fired Emanuel. In what could have ruined any promising career, Emanuel went on to create his own boutique agency, Endeavor, now considered of the most powerful in Hollywood, with an estimated $100 million in revenue each year."
Rahm Emanuel: Former advisor to Bill Clinton and led the Democrats to take over the House in 2006 as chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Inspiration for Bradley Whitford's character Josh Lyman on The West Wing

Thursday, January 1, 2009


Wired's 2009 Movie Guide
Somehow they left off Up. Pixar never disappoints.

You won't normally find a lot of Top 4o songs mentioned here, but this is an interesting little mash-up of the Top 25 hits of the year.

iStanford iPhone Application
"So far, their program, "iStanford," which launched October 1, is pretty straightforward — users can access a campus map and course catalog, email professors and get news and information about sports teams. Nothing wildly innovative about that.

But the newest version, slated to arrive shortly, also allows students to add and drop courses, see the real-time whereabouts of the on-campus shuttle bus, review their own grades and course history and perform a variety of other administrative tasks that are normally accessible only over secure campus networks."

Video of the new Apple laptop without a keyboard

An interesting post by Anathallo about the story behind their new song "The River."
"If you go against current and fight it, your muscles become tired, knotted, and worn. What happens if you hop? It takes you. You can loosen your tensions as it carries you down. It's giving in to the complete unknowns which we generally feel uncomfortable about because they take more constant attentiveness and mindfulness...

Erica and I wrote [the lyrics] after hearing about an experience that her mom had while hiking the Pacific Crest Trail. She was crossing a river and the current swept her away. Due to the weight of her pack, she couldn't get to a bank and was certain that she was going to die. Upon that realization, she leaned back, calmed her senses and enjoyed what she thought would be her last living moments... she observed everything with a concentrated mindfulness as she passed underneath the glow of light pouring through the canopy of leaves."