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A postcard of Hamburger’s Department Store is listed on EBay as Buy It Now for $2.99.
The classy, oversize May Co. Department Store located at 801 S. Broadway in downtown Los Angeles is up for sale. Today, the mostly empty Broadway Trade Center hosts makeshift swap meet stalls on the first floor in this once celebrated building, the largest department store west of the Mississippi River. Once known as Hamburger’s Department Store, the facility later operated as the May Co. Original owner Hamburger’s was a more elegant and upscale Wal-Mart, hosting every type of business under its roof, even a movie theater.
Hamburger’s Department Store ranked as one of Los Angeles’ premier shopping centers in the early 1900s. Asher Hamburger and his son David immigrated to Los Angeles from Sacramento in 1881, establishing the 20 x 100 foot People’s Store at Main Street and Requena. This department store…
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One has to give Hollywood (and every other media outlet in a free society) credit for egalitarian offensiveness — a no-holds-barred history of provocation that populates the theatres; a borderless race, color, creed and sex barrage that boosts box office receipts, sells books and music, and boosts ratings.
Perhaps I just don’t, well, “get it.”
When I saw the photo of the Your Religion Here mob parading Chris Stevens’ beaten corpse around like a trophy, I knew I would never “get it,” regardless of whether the senseless death of — by all reports — a beyond remarkable person was motivated by a crappy film, or part of a terrorist plot.
Well, get this:
I don’t agree with every aspect of the hard-line observations, but am certainly able to connect the dots more easily that I can between religious insult and destroying a Kentucky Fried Chicken.
I am glad to have met Mr. Bradbury.
I will be glad if I never meet Scott Walker.
Mr. Bradbury indirectly introduced me to my wife, among many other wonderful things.
“Scott Walker” and his victory formally introduces (a veritable sales receipt!) us to the wholesale commoditization of our so-called political process.
If I think about Walker and what he represents, I get sick.
If I think about Bradbury and what he represents, I get hope.
I’ll think about Ray…
SCRATCHING THE SURFACE OF SOME OF MR. BRADBURY’S QUOTES:
Americans are far more remarkable than we give ourselves credit for. We’ve been so busy damning ourselves for years. We’ve done it all, and yet we don’t take credit for it.
Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.
Every morning I jump out of bed and step on a landmine. The landmine is me. After the explosion, I spent the rest of the day putting the pieces together.
I don’t try to describe the future. I try to prevent it.
I know you’ve heard it a thousand times before. But it’s true – hard work pays off. If you want to be good, you have to practice, practice, practice. If you don’t love something, then don’t do it.
I spent three days a week for 10 years educating myself in the public library, and it’s better than college. People should educate themselves – you can get a complete education for no money. At the end of 10 years, I had read every book in the library and I’d written a thousand stories.
If we listened to our intellect, we’d never have a love affair. We’d never have a friendship. We’d never go into business, because we’d be cynical. Well, that’s nonsense. You’ve got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down.
If you don’t like what you’re doing, then don’t do it.
If you dream the proper dreams, and share the myths with people, they will want to grow up to be like you.
If you enjoy living, it is not difficult to keep the sense of wonder.
Jump, and you will find out how to unfold your wings as you fall.
Living at risk is jumping off the cliff and building your wings on the way down.
Love is easy, and I love writing. You can’t resist love. You get an idea, someone says something, and you’re in love.
Love is the answer to everything. It’s the only reason to do anything. If you don’t write stories you love, you’ll never make it. If you don’t write stories that other people love, you’ll never make it.
Love. Fall in love and stay in love. Write only what you love, and love what you write. The key word is love. You have to get up in the morning and write something you love, something to live for.
My stories run up and bite me on the leg – I respond by writing down everything that goes on during the bite. When I finish, the idea lets go and runs off.
Stuff your eyes with wonder, live as if you’d drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It’s more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories.
The best scientist is open to experience and begins with romance – the idea that anything is possible.
There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them.
Touch a scientist and you touch a child.
We are an impossibility in an impossible universe.
We are anthill men upon an anthill world.
We are cups, constantly and quietly being filled. The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out.
We are the miracle of force and matter making itself over into imagination and will. Incredible. The Life Force experimenting with forms. You for one. Me for another. The Universe has shouted itself alive. We are one of the shouts.
Without libraries what have we? We have no past and no future.
You can’t try to do things; you simply must do them.
You don’t have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them.
You fail only if you stop writing.
You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.
You’ve got to jump off cliffs and build your wings on the way down.
Produced by an anti-Semite, animated by Jews…Uncle Walt brings us Judeo-Christian Unity in Technicolor®!
You haven’t lived till you’ve spent a holiday in a hospital…
“RKO clown “Toto” distributes cardboard Easter bunnies packed with lollipops from W.T. Grant Company. This event was held in the 2nd floor playroom at UW Children’s Orthopedic hospital, 436 N. Randall Street.” (1932)
They both look a little terrified…
The young man may have a premonition that his guts are going to get blown away in Korea…
The rabbit may sense that he/she’s soon going to be paraded around the gelatinous shoulders of some matron at a Syosset D.A.R. meeting…
Several Very Important People think they heard it, but none of them bothered to write it down.
Perhaps a dropout in the music…or maybe the dialog…or maybe the effects.
Nobody seems to know what reel the audio problem resides in (forget about the footage), and now the team of rabbit sound editors must work as long as it takes to isolate the alleged problem.
There will be no Passover…no Easter…
Worse yet, provisions in the Low-Budget Leporine Contract has these hares under the aegis of an any-eight-out-of-seven deal with no holiday overtime.
Much as I tried to gather terrifying images of winter holidays, it’s now my duty to add some for Easter, a celebration of sugar and dye…
Read it and weep, and then weep some more…
Housecat “Pisa” returns to Earth safely this morning, no worse for the wear, but FAA issues citation against owners.
Grassley’s always been an astonishing dim-bulb.
Do my fellow Iowans keep putting him in office simply to attain visibility?
You name it, Grassley’s longstanding, blunderingly outspoken insensitivity to such “touchy-feely” issues as ANY form of human rights, healthcare, immigration, or ANY other minor matter is at least consistently boggling, and mildly entertaining.
I forgot about this…
“All you have to do is love everything that’s important in your life.”
Ray Bradbury, October 29, 2008
On Valentine’s day, Venice’s lovelorn Orange Cats have a place to commemorate their heartbreak.
Bounced from one foster home to another, crooked-headed Pisa fends off waves of depression, alternating between a costly cocktail of feline antidepressants and kibbles, day in and day out.
Recently informed that he had no balls, Pisa now tangles with another maudlin arrow added to his quiver of despondency.
Budget cuts have forced his local feline group therapy session to close its doors, so now he keeps his mirth close to home, in a cheap and filthy litter box.
On Saturday, February 11, 2012, at 5:07PM, the first of many e-mails announcing Whitney Houston’s death began flooding my in-box, continue to the present, and bright headlines will surely plaster the tabloids for weeks to come.
My own last quarter of 2011 was laden with personal losses, and Ms. Houston’s sad demise made me contemplate the concept of “tragedy.”
Yeah, many will think me a cold cynic, insensitive to concentric circles of grievers ranging from Ms. Houston’s immediate family to a collective global sadness about the tragic demise of a truly gifted artist…
…to the highly-paid “expert” counselors, doctors and shrinks who shepherded Ms. Houston from one relapse to another…
…to the “friends” who made sure Whitney’s supply of prescribed and other anesthetic tonics was always at the ready…
…to the “grieving” industry that surely wept as Houston’s greatest hits collections skyrocketed to the top of the iTunes charts before the bathtub Houston died in was even drained…
Houston’s death wasn’t sudden, and I wondered where all the folks presently paralyzed with bereavement or otherwise “shocked” have been hiding while dozens of panic buttons were being desperately pushed, and red flags of deterioration littered Whitney’s precipitous spiral.
Indeed, the show must go on, and within hours of Houston’s death becoming “official,” Grammy executive producer Ken Ehrlich regaled CNN about the music awards show’s plan to honor Whitney, “but it will be something respectful.”
This translates to interns scrambling to edit the last-minute presentation to carefully avoid the abundance of Houston’s “dour and dazed” photos taken over the last decade.
Clive Davis was so “devastated” that he couldn’t afford to cancel his annual pre-Grammy gala, repurposing it as a “remembrance” of the most-awarded female act of all time that he had discovered and – gee, ya think? – perhaps profited from.
At Davis’ Beverly Hills Hilton fete, grief-stricken luminaries grazed on room temperature surf and turf while Houston’s body lay in wait several floors below.
If your immediate grief is too overwhelming to watch the Grammy’s, you can wait until Valentine’s Day: 20th Century Fox is considering a Whitney tribute on Glee, surely to bolster ratings for an already in-the-can episode featuring Amber Riley singing Houston’s trademark ballad “I Will Always Love You.”
There is no question that Whitney Houston’s death is the loss of, as Ricky Gervais wrote, “An amazing talent & a tragic soul.”
What saddens and sickens me, however, is a global warm, fuzzy and opportunistic climate where a beautiful person with a god-given gift of good pipes deteriorates to a perpetually relapsing drug-and-booze-addicted train-wreck, caught in a loop of falling from grace until she finally dies in a tub, and she’s “suddenly” a tragedy.
Houston’s tragedy is a long-in-the-making but sudden spike of cyber/media grief frenzy that will disproportionately disappear like a bulb burning out on a theatre marquee.
After all, we’ve got the Oscars coming up – and who knows what the vast red-carpet potential of other “tragedies” might offer in terms of newer, shinier moments of sadness.
If there are tiers of tragedy, the most resonant is that Whitney Houston had to die to get the attention she had been crying out for for a long time.