Sunday, April 20, 2014

Denise and da Nephews

My cousin's three children are a remarkable bunch!  I am well aware of how supremely annoying it is when parents brag about their children.  I frequently observe gargoyle ugly children being told by their lying shit sack parents that they are just beautiful when the exact opposite is true.  The overwhelming majority of relatives that praise their fugly nieces, nephews, grandchildren, and then proclaim  how talented they supposedly are make me want to blow chunks.  But my little cousins are an exception.  They are darling children.  Carlos, the oldest, is such a great looking kid and in possession of a very high IQ.  He truly has the best genes of both his parents. The middle child is darling too, and quite determined on the trail, a little reserved at first, but empathetic and kind.  The 18 month old girl has one of the best personalities of any small child I have ever met.  If you met them, you would see for yourself.  Forgive my bragging, but I can't help myself because they are so special.

The children are suffering psychological distress because my cousin and her estranged husband are currently embroiled in an exceedingly high conflict divorce and custody matter over at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse.  While the case is super ugly and both parties exceedingly unyielding, it is not something that I care to become involved in as a witness or a participant in any other way, shape, or form.  I do want to offer my time to helping these kids as much as I can.  They are well loved.  While obviously I would like my cousin to win because she is family, I am old enough to know that there are no winners in a family law matter.  Also, it takes two to tango.  Whoever your relative is in a divorce matter, remember that they married that other person.  When parties divorce, they are batshit crazy.  It is wise to limit your involvement as much as possible while still being supportive.  You do it by focusing on the kids and taking their mind off the domestic problems by allowing them to be kids.  When they start talking about the divorce or asking questions, simply start talking about something else.  Then get them to the park or another place where they can enjoy themselves without being reminded of alienation and litigation.

There are only losers in domestic cases, and those losers are almost without exception, the minor child of the parties.  There is nothing more emotionally traumatic than a divorce to a small child with the possible exception of the death of an immediate family member or a tragic and disfiguring accident.  The people in most divorce cases that I am rooting for are the minor children, but that is not the objective of the Family Law and Juvenile Dependency Court Judges and the community of matrimonial lawyers and their support staff who understand that the process has immense commercial value and directly employs thousands of individuals in Los Angeles County injecting hundreds of millions of dollars into State and Local economies.

Family law attorneys in Los Angeles are primarily a worthless lot as are employees of the DCFS.  If I solved problems utilizing violent means, I would probably use hand tools to dismember and grind them up into Soylent Green.  Tuesday is Soylent Green Day.  Most of the judges on the Family Law Panel at Mosk could probably be replaced by a simple computer application that would apply the California Family Code with both precision and total judicial blindness.  They should be sent to the wastebasket of history and judicial panels should only be used in the most abstract of cases.  Litigants should be considered applicants instead, and joint legal and physical custody to the parties should be automatic and as easy as filling out a Marriage License with the County Registrar and Recorder and always processed on the same day while you wait.  It should be obtainable by either party for good cause, bad cause, or no cause at all.  Completely no fault and processed with the utmost efficiency and speed.  Just think of all the money that could be saved!  Vigorously prosecute all Family Court litigants that make false accusations, especially false allegations of sexual abuse in criminal court.  Domestic cases are the only matters where perjury is not taken seriously despite the immense damage that generally takes place as a result of  parents making false accusations about their estranged spouses during custody and support battles.  I propose that making false accusations of sexual abuse during a divorce or paternity proceeding should be codified as a felony, and that the District Attorney vigorously investigate and file cases against the perpetrators of chickenshit rumormongering.  The overwhelming majority of litigants that bear false witness against their former spouse are female, but of course men occasionally act like cunts and snitch like weasels.

Having been personally involved in well over 2500 family cases since June 5th, 1999, I can tell you without reservation that it is a not a good thing to be involved in.  By associating with turds, you are inevitably going to wind up with fecal matter on your hands.  As I had mentioned, dealing with most family law attorneys in Los Angeles will require you to wash your hands frequently with hot water and AJAX.  Scrub your hands under the hot water for at least 40 seconds and clip your fingernails.  It is especially important not to become emotionally involved in the case of a family member.  It is prudent to offer support to your relative but avoid becoming a witness or reading court material and documents.

What you should do is try and spend as much time as possible with the minor children and provide them with the ability to act like kids as the life they once knew sadly unravels.  There are many activities that will take their little minds off the tension in the households of both separated parents.  Of course the children will want to please their parents, and will bring them up frequently.  As an uncle or aunt, grandparent, cousin, or older sibling, you need to let the kids know how important both parents are.  There is no excuse for you to talk any shit about a little kid's parents and the damage that will occur to their self esteem will take years of psychotherapy later in life to unravel.  Instead of talking shit and acting like a turd, praise the dad and praise the mom.  Talk about some of the good things about both parents and tell the kids that they are loved and that everything always works out in the end and that it just takes a little time to heal.

I knew of a case where an upper-middle class woman from Manhattan Beach made false accusations of sexual abuse against her ex-husband.  She almost succeeded in getting him arrested and prosecuted, but fortunately the judge smelled shit and put a stop to the fiasco by awarding custody to the father.  Thank God!  There was nothing wrong with dad other than the fact that mom hated him and wanted to damage him.  She tried to enlist all her friends and relatives to go against him, but I never jumped on that bandwagon.  Her entire family did jump on that bandwagon and badmouthed the dad, threatened him with violence, and literally tried to assassinate his character.  It did not work, but there are many cases where it does.  These people who participate in this sickening behavior should never be around children in the first place and the poor damn kids should probably go into foster care where they might just have a fucking fighting chance at living a normal life.

I suggest that if someone asks you to take sides in a custody battle, just take the side of the minor children instead and remember when you were a small child that it would have been devastating if some dumb ass relative said something bad about your mom or dad.  My nephew adores his father, and so I always make it a point to tell him that his dad is an awesome athlete and that he should lift weights, strength train, and get involved in Martial Arts like his dad.  I tell him his dad is a man and he is a little man and a big part about growing into a big man is physical fitness.  He needs to be able to look up to his dad who is obviously going to teach him that important stuff.  Make them feel good about it instead of being worthless and talking shit.  I think this goes a long way to building self esteem and confidence.

Anyhow, I take care of my two special guys and my angelic little girl every Saturday, all day.  This Saturday, I took them on a moderate 4 mile trail run.  I carried the little girl, but the boys went un-assisted all the way up a steep trail with about 1200 ft elevation gain.  They followed my instructions to the letter, and booked up the hill.  The older boy is 6, and in addition to being remarkably intelligent, seems to have inherited his father's natural athletic ability.  He was able to keep up and clearly has the ability to go much farther and could easily learn how to boulder and do a hard scramble.   I am hoping to take him to Baldy next time we spend some time together so he can bag his first 10k Peak.  The 4 year old boy did well also, and the little girl seems to be a thrill seeker.  I gave them constant reassurance and let them talk.  Getting to the summit was great for their self esteem.  They did it all themselves and I was really proud of them!  I pointed out the Hawks, Ravens, Reptiles, Rodents, Sycamores, Oaks, Crows, Robins, and the magnificent views from high on top of the Santa Monica Mountains.  I know they are all hooked on trail running, cause when we ran down, the boys booked down the hill non-stop for two miles.  A long way when you are a little kid.

When I took them home, they were all out like a light.  The little guys are just wonderful kids and I am looking forward to teaching them all about fishing, rifle skills, backpacking, swimming, trail running, integrity, and a general love of the outdoors.  I hope to provide them with a sanctuary where they can feel secure, protected, loved, and the ability to act like kids and run free without a care in the world.  I am especially stoked to take them running on the trails of the Santa Monicas, San Gabriels, and the San Bernardino National Forest.  It takes a mountain to build a man (and a woman, too, of course).

When I spend time with these wonderful little people, I see the best qualities of both parents and the potential for individual greatness for all three of them.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Kia Sedona: About the Shittiest Vehicle I Have Ever Driven

This review is based on the 2012 Kia Sedona minivan that I have been driving for the last month for work.  I have never driven another Kia product, and am not likely to ever drive one again if I can possibly avoid it.   This vehicle is an absolutely worthless, reprehensible, rolling hunk of shit.  I can't believe that it went into production.  

Firstly, I feel like a pedophile driving this thing around.  Even my daughter told me that when I drive it I look totally like a sex offender.  Then, expect about 11 miles per gallon.  Not bad for a 1974 Buick Electra, but for a modern vehicle without a V-8, it is merely comical.  Who the fuck designed this thing?  It runs and drives like some team of jackass engineers from Pyongyang reverse engineered a Toyota Previa.  It could quite possibly be the same team that reverse engineered a second generation SCUD into the Nodong Ballistic Missile.  It handles worse than a Yugo with two flat tires.  Once again, this thing is not just bad, but horrid.  Nothing is where it should be.  When you try and adjust the radio, it is inevitably going to cause a hazard.  The controls are placed so randomly it defies one's imagination.  On a real car made by real engineers like the Mazda Miata, all the controls are where they are supposed to be.  These guys should have taken some lessons in functionality from the much more serious and efficient Japanese who make real cars.  Not some tincan minivan made by North Koreans and one armed men like this thing.   Then there are the blind spots which make this thing truly unsafe.  It would make a good van to transport clowns to and fro the circus.  The Koreans seem to do a lot of things correctly, but they should really stay out of the automobile business.


3901 W 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90020
(213) 249-9449


Not being from the East Coast, the word Whiz has different connotations to me so I was reluctant to enter this place.  Additionally, I am on a special diet that consists of 50% fresh vegetables and fruits, 40% Carbs and 10% Protein so I can't be eating like Chris Christie or Kirstie Alley or I am not going to be able to run very far now, am I?  One day per month, I defile the temple that is my body and eat some seriously unhealthy shit.  Today was that day, so I ordered the Italian Stallion Hoagie even though I am not an Italian.   I can usually find something wrong with anything, but this was a sandwich of excellence.  You know, I really felt like I had just smoked crack after I ate that hoagie.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Claro's Italian Deli

159 E College St
Covina, CA 91723
(626) 339-3333

Claro's Italian Market  

Categories: ItalianDelisCaterers 
3.0 star rating
Nice sandwich with a great sharp provolone and other quality ingredients. The bread, however, tasted worse than Soylent Green.  Excellent counter service with professional, polite people who made me feel quite welcome.  I had always thought that Covina was a village full of idiots limited to the automobile dealerships, dilapidated shopping malls, Friday's, and the Olive Garden parallel to the 10FWY.  I had no idea that there was a quaint little shopping district with killer antique stores and some nice Craftsman style homes located just a few blocks north.  I had been reading about Claro's on Yelp for a little while.   I was not disappointed, but I was not impressed either.  I feel that the sandwich offered at the Roma Deli is far superior.  While I did not have too much time to examine the contents of the grocery department, what I saw sure looked good.

A Good Tailor Shop

827 S Main St
Los Angeles, CA 90014
(213) 622-9942

Mike's Tailor Shop  

Category: Sewing & Alterations
Neighborhood: Downtown LA
A suit always feels like a straightjacket to me.  A tie, like a hangman's noose.  I'm not into dress shoes, and not qualified to discuss fashion.  My oldest brother is a clothes horse and in my late 40's, I still inherit his hand me downs.  He recently gave me a black Armani suit and and a dark blue one from Nordstrom's.  He mentioned something about a high price tag, something about the fabric and some other incomprehensible babble .  He also gave me a white suit which I immediately threw in the trash.

Mike has been tailoring my straightjackets ever since 1982.  I took in those two suits my brother gave me, and he had both of them pinned up in just a few minutes.  He had to take quite a bit of fabric off, and make the suits significantly smaller as well as tapering and hemming the pants.  When I came to pick them up and tried them on, I was really impressed with the way they fit.  They are like perfect custom tailored suits that I could wear to any event.  My wife liked my custom tailored straightjacket so much when I tried it on for her that she promptly unbuttoned and unzipped it.

I paid 135 for the alterations on both suits.  It was a little steep, but they did such a good job, it was money well spent  Mending is better than ending.  Get your older brother to hand you down a suit and take it here.  You are going to like the way your straightjacket fits.

Israeli Street Food on Melrose

7422 Melrose Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90046
(323) 944-0013

Ta-eem Grill  

Categories: MediterraneanKosher
Neighborhood: Fairfax
4.0 star rating
The laffa is about the size of Chris Christie's lunch hoagie.  You could cut it in half and still satisfy two hungry people of normal girth and body weight.  The food is tasty, but I would had preferred to have the option of ordering a smaller laffa because this thing was overkill. The salads tasted fresh, but were a little heavy on the oil.  I got the eggplant tomato, hummus, babaghanoush, and some cucumber and tomato salad.  The chicken was good, crispy, well seasoned, not too salty, and well seasoned with "secret" shawerma spices.  Once again, too much meat.  The salads and harissa were included in the 10 price tag. What stood out more than the food was the great service.  The owner came up and brought me some additional sauces, and inquired as to whether I was enjoying my meal.  I appreciated his concern and he seemed like a cool cat .  I can't wait to return to try the falafel.  As for the location, if you are familiar with this area, you will know that it is very short on parking.  Save yourself a headache and walk or take the bus.  Pretty damn good street food, not the healthiest food around, but much better than a cheesesteak or burger and nutritious and well seasoned to boot.

Super King

7227 Van Nuys Blvd
Van Nuys, CA 91405
(818) 464-432

Super King Market  
Category: Grocery
Neighborhood: Van Nuys
Maybe you are not one of the anointed ones who can afford to spend $4.00 on a bunch of beets, or are able to pay five or six times for tomatoes than I do.  I avoid the Valley like the ebola, and it was just plain weird that I found myself in that area yesterday on a work assignment.  Although I am a Los Angeles Native Son, I have not spent much time in the Valley at least since the late 1970's and the early 1980's.  I remember going to Phases Nightclub, Gozilla's in Sun Valley, as well as the now defunct Busch Gardens and other landmarks long gone.  I have gone to the Valley maybe three dozen times since 1986, mostly to eat Middle Eastern food.

The Valley of the 1970's is a blurry figment of our lame memories.  It has instead become this giant, decaying shithole with traffic and super global warming.  But there is the occasional gem of a place like Super King.

If you are a vegetarian, you would be surprised at how many meals you can buy at this market for 20 bucks.  I figure about nine (9) meals, and gourmet ones at that.

Asparagus: .99/lb.  green, fresh, and identical to the 2.99 asparagus at Von's
Cluster Tomatoes .59/lb instead of 1.59 at Ralphs
Beets (small red) .79 per bunch
Dill .50
Persian Cucumbers .59/lb
Italian Squash 1.00/4 lbs

You will find all kinds of other great stuff such as dried fruits, nuts and seeds.  I was totally impressed with this market.  It would be worth the drive from K-Town.  High praises!