Author Archive


Joy for Beginners

Joy for Beginners

I slipped into this inviting novel like a warm bath.  It’s soothing and sensual, comforting and relaxing.  There’s no psycho behind the shower curtain either – if you are looking for a reading experience that is the equivalent of a good long soak, and are willing to shed some tears and giggle a bit as [...]

The Race to Nowhere

The Race to Nowhere

A new documentary, Race to Nowhere, skewers high school students’ overly demanding academic and extracurricular schedules. The result of so much stress, according to the film, is sleep-deprived, time-starved, overtested and, incredibly, under-educated American kids.

Oceanview Bistro

Oceanview Bistro

Ugh, the dreaded office lunch out. (OK, I know, offices are lucky to be able to afford lunch out these days, and if you have a job at all, you’re happy. But work with me here.) The boss dreads it because of the expense, the hassle and the excruciating need to make small talk. The [...]

Red Rosie, the Doo Dah Queen

Red Rosie, the Doo Dah Queen

Rosie Schoen, aka Red Rosie, is a 17-year-old actress, vintage movie and clothing buff, and the 2011 Doo Dah Queen. Tall, thin, brunette and gorgeous, she’s an Alverno High School junior whose favorite class is AP U.S. History. I’ve known her since she was in diapers, and I have always been struck by her sense [...]

Coffeehouses for Every Need

Coffeehouses for Every Need

In Pasadena (and neighboring Hometown towns) we are blessed with nearly as many independent coffee houses are there are beans in a pound of Mocha Java. Each establishment has loyal fans, each has at least one thing that makes them special, and all make a great cup of joe (espresso/macchiato/cappuccino). We have listed some of [...]

KindKreme

KindKreme

KindKreme is not something you slather on your dinosaur-skin elbows or use to whiten your teeth. Neither is it a concoction from Harry Potter that turns bullies into sweethearts. Rather, it’s a vegan, organic, sustainable café that has a rocking ice cream counter, a smoothie/juice bar, coffee and some damn decent lunch choices. If you’re [...]

Joe Rohde, Imagineer

Joe Rohde, Imagineer

Altadenan Joe Rohde is an Imagineer – which means he designs theme parks for Disney. Not long after graduating from Occidental College, he started out as a model maker for EPCOT back in 1980, joining a troupe of young artists and the old-timers who had worked on Disneyland and Walt Disney World. Joe’s painting skills – combined with a well-honed gift for theatrics and set design picked up from his drama-teacher mom and camera-operator dad – helped him move into the ranks of design executives…

The Telling of the Irish

The Telling of the Irish

Spring, even in Southern California, provides exhilaration, variety and a great excuse to curl up with a cup of tea and read. Here’s a literary suggestion to complement a wet, cold weekend that follows a warm, mock-orange-scented week: Tana French’s three-novel cycle of crime and (not much) redemption. With French’s luminous writing, you are in [...]

Mike & Tina, the Magic Couple

Mike & Tina, the Magic Couple

We’ve often noticed that couples who are in the same business seem to be polar opposites, even if they share some deep connection. Tim Burton and Helena Bonham Carter may sport similarly winsome hair, but they don’t even live in the same house. Annette Bening and Warren Beatty are both classy, but while she’s perky, [...]

Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand

Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand

If Miss Marple investigated social consciousness instead of murder mysteries, Agatha Christie might have written this book. Set in a charmingly upscale village on the Sussex downs, this novel is a charmingly upscale commentary on British snobbery as widowed, bookish and oh-so-English Major Pettigrew falls inevitably in love with the village’s Pakistani shopkeeper. Consequences ensue, [...]

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Maude Woods - Opening October 22nd in Pasadena

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Camelot and Vine

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