July 21: On my way to meet with freshmen, I saw this sign in the parking structure. This photo is the reason I never leave home without my digital camera.
July 22: After work, I walked in to Westwood and decided to catch the next bus at Wilshire & Westwood, a huge and busy intersection. Walking down the hill a few blocks is a quick and nice walk, and during rush hour quicker than sitting on the bus. The Occidental Petroleum Building (shown) also houses the Armand Hammer Museum
July 23: My parents got married 31(!) years ago on this day. Awesome.
After work, I headed to Downtown LA for the third DJ panel in the Featuring the Lightz and Soundz of…: A 30-Year Survey of DJ Culture in East LA series. I missed the first two panels, but didn’t want to miss the panel where the DJs discussed incorporating Latin alternative, dance classics and international pop and rock into their repertoires. More on the project can be found at Pachucoville (he wrote the book on the topic!), KCET, and sickly season (for audio, photos and brief reviews).
July 24: I took off to Chicago in the afternoon after a busy day at work. The Flyaway Bus from Westwood features free — but crappy — wi-fi. Checking my email made me dizzy.
July 25: My first day in Chicago was rather low key. We were jet lagged and the weather didn’t help. I had lunch at a nice café near my host’s apartment, spilled water all over my skirt, and played video games. Later we played a drinking game while watching Zoolander. Every time Derek Zoolander made the “Blue Steel” face we had to smack the coffee table. Last person to hit the table had to take a half shot of tequila chased with Squirt. I lost or won. It depends how you look at it.
July 26: After my panel on blogging at the Unity Conference, I joined up with some friends for dinner. Will chose Lula Café in Logan Square. According to Will, when he was a kid Logan Square was “the hood” but over the last 20 odd years the areas has become gentrified. There are still lots of people of color in the neighborhood. I love the contrast between the Mexicanos entering the Logan Square Auditorium (above Lula Café) for a quinceañera and the bemused white diners.
I wanted to go upstairs and check out the party, but the guys insisted, “just because you’re Mexican doesn’t mean you’ll be welcomed.”
July 27: I visited the National Museum of Mexican Art and was thorougly impressed by the new exhibition, A Declaration of Immigration. I toured the exhibition with La Chanclita Divina, Mr. CD, and Mariposa Atómica. Afterwards, we had pizza with CD and Mr. CD. Thanks to the Chicago blogueras for their hospitality!
In the evening, I strolled along Grant Park and Millennium Park to enjoy some public art and the sound of cicadas. I visited the Crown Fountains last April, but it was cold and the fountains were off. This time around it, the fountains were in full force and kids (and some adults) ran wild in the water. I got my feet wet after the long walk up Michigan Ave and watched as the kids had the time of their lives.
July 28: It was too hot to do sightseeing during the day. Instead, we visited the Sears Tower after sunset and then strolled around the Chicago River. I like Chicago more and more after each visit.
July 29: On my last day in Chicago, I visited Navy Pier to get Ozo some new clothes. The Dodgers may not be doing too well, but at least the Cubs are having a great season.
July 30: I left my iPod in my seat at the gate and didn’t realize it until I was already on the plane. Sigh. It’s a long flight from Chicago to LA to be without music or podcasts. I didn’t even have a book or magazine in my carry on bag. I was bored. The next day, I checked with lost and found at Midway. I had some hope considering a fellow passenger said she found it and turned it in at the gate before boarding. No luck. No iPods were found and turned in. I couldn’t go more than a day without my iPod and bought a new one in the middle of a busy day at work. My codo hurts, but my ears are fine.
July 31: Take me to East LA, via the First Street bridge.