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May 20, 2018:

THINGS I LEARNED WHILE JOGGING II: THE ADVENTURE CONTINUES

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, here is what I learned while jogging, part two.  Yesterday whilst doing the three-mile jog I decided to take a different route, going east rather than my usual west.  Whilst traveling south down to Ventura Blvd. I took the street to the east of me.  The most interesting thing I noticed on one of those blocks was that someone had bought three lots – the lots on these streets are VERY deep, amazingly so.  Grant owns three in a row on my block.  But Grant is not a venal, money-grubbing property flipper.  Some developer got hold of these three lots, tore all the stuff down and then built – you won’t believe this – four houses.  Two in front, two behind them, all huge, ugly, disgusting things.  And these four houses on what is now one large lot are behind a gate, like a little four house community.  I found it entirely disgusting.

So, what I learned as I went east on Ventura Blvd. to Coldwater Canyon was that there are quite a few restaurants I know and like but never think about – that’s going to change as of today, as I’ve decided to have an early supper at one such restaurant.  I also took note of a bunch of new restaurants I’ve never heard of, each more off-putting than the next.  Places with names like Wood and Water, always followed by the word “Bar.” That is what these hipster jernts are all about, the bar part, because the previous two generations are becoming the biggest bunch of alcoholics in decades – they wouldn’t admit it of course, but it happens to be true.  Even looking at the food as I jogged by (these jernts all have outdoor patios) made me want to vomit on the ground – you know, salad with shrubs rather than plain lettuce, and all manner of dishes that just looked hideous to my eye. Hamburgers on milk buns with bushes instead of lettuce.  I gotta tell you.  I passed some interesting shops and some people who were just so unaware there was an old Jew pathetically jogging that I kept having to dodge them or go around them because heaven forbid they should actually be aware of their damn surroundings.

I was also fascinated to see that there were quite a few buildings set back from the rest on obviously deep lots.  Every one of those was formerly a motel – quite obvious if you know how those were laid out, and even more obvious if you actually look at the one motel there that’s left.  There were about eight of those – so at one time between Coldwater and Woodman there were probably ten motels in one mile (some on the opposite side of the street).  The jog itself wasn’t terrible until the final two blocks, so it’s getting just a bit easier.  And it does feel good to be getting the old metabolic rate functioning.  Another thing I passed by was a used book store I never remember is there – although I’ve been in there many times and I think only once did I find something interesting.

Prior to the jog, I got about ten hours of sleep, not arising until one o’clock and thereby missing the entire morning once again. But I needed it and am glad I got it, not necessarily in that order.  I took about three months worth of clothes to the cleaners, then picked up a couple of packages, then did the jog.  After I returned from the jog I made the Freshly meal – penne Bolognese – it was pretty okay, but needed some salt and pepper to perk it up.  It was very filling, and yet only had 570 calories, three hundred of which I’d just jogged off.  After that, I did a spot of work at the piano and on the computer, and got the singers the rest of their music.  Then I sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, I watched the new Blu and Ray from Warner Archive of Gun Crazy, a favorite of mine.  I have the French Blu-ray of some years ago, which at the time I thought looked pretty good, but this transfer puts that to shame.  It’s a great film with two wonderful performances from Peggy Cummins and John Dall.  Highly recommended by the likes of me.

After that, I decided I wasn’t in the mood for the second Freshly meal so I gave it to Grant who was next door working, and so my only other food was some sweets that brought the calorie count up but still slightly below 1000, which is what I’m trying to do this first week – between 1000 and 1200.  After a couple of weeks I can go to 1200 t0 1500 and still lose weight.  I have got to stick with this for the rest of the year – I just gained too much unseemly weight after the last weight loss, mostly due to non-jogging and eating way too much when I was directing all those shows last year, and then writing GEE.

Then I made an attempt to watch the Twilight Time Blu-ray of The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds, based on the play by Paul Zindel.  I saw this show on stage around 1973 at LACC in an absolutely superb production that starred Kathleen Hietala and my pal Margo Dean.  Such was the performance of Ms. Hietala that I cast here soon thereafter to play Eunice, the script girl, in The First Nudie Musical – THAT is how great she was.  I found the play very affecting.  I’d never seen the film version – I’m not at all sure Paul Newman was the right person to direct, just as I’m not at all sure that Joanne Woodward was the right choice to play the mother.  Nell Potts (the daughter of Mr. Newman and Ms. Woodward) is the best thing in the film, but Alvin Sargent’s attempts to open up the play are just terrible.  The transfer is superb, though, and I’ll finish it up tonight.

After that, I relaxed and listened to music by my recent discovery Kara Karayev – I just really like his stuff – very melodic and just terrific.

Today, I’ll make the show order, then start writing the commentary.  I’ll also hopefully do a three-mile jog (the east route again), and then at five I’m supping with friends.  Otherwise, I’m sure I’ll work at the piano and on the computer.  And there should be a new track to hear and approve – I’m really happy with them so far.

This week is very busy – meetings and meals, a work session, playing the other five or six songs I’ve done for Richard Allen – he cleverly films my hands playing so that my chord voicings all find their way into his charts, which is really a good way to do it – and lots of other stuff to attend to in preparation for the Kritzerland rehearsal week.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, make a show order, begin writing commentary, do a jog, and sup with friends, after which I shall undoubtedly relax. Today’s topic of discussion: It’s free-for-all day, the day in which you dear readers get to make with the topics and we all get to post about them.  So, let’s have loads of lovely topics and loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, happy to have learned new things whilst jogging.

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