Just in case you’re still using this link I’ve moved to

http://julioac.is-a-geek.org/wordpress

Make sure you don’t add “www” to it or else it won’t work.

Ciao

At work today I overheard my supervisor in the Technology Lab tell a fellow teacher that she would have to spend a good chunk of change on some Windows software. About $170 for Microsoft Office & another $80 to install Windows XP on her old computer. I was floored. Let me tell you why.

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Last Friday I was scheduled to assist on a field trip to Mt. Lowe. A peak near Mt. Wilson in the Angeles Forest. After the school bus slowly made its way up Lake Ave.’s steep incline we found that the trail head was closed. After a call to the Forest Service we learned that the whole forest was closed as a precautionary measure with all the recent fires.

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I’ve always been into listening to radio novelas, serials, etc. Usually with my dad, late at night, and usually the shows were old Mexican serials complete with sound effects. There is something about storytelling that is so lacking in most of what you find in all forms of media these days. Today it’s all gloss and no substance.

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I first went to Antigua Cultural Coffeehouse in El Sereno near it’s opening. I liked the space, the colors, the environment, and I also liked that it was so close to my house. A nice cup of coffee would only be a short bike ride away. I came in with high hopes but after my first cup I was thoroughly underwhelmed. I was told they even roast their own beans, and on one occasion I actually got to hear it roaring in the back.

I returned a month or so later to only find that coffee was still not good. It didn’t really much matter whether it was an Americano, a regular drip-coffee, or even a Mexican Mocha: it all either lacked taste or just tasted burned. Now yes, I am a coffee-snob (or aficionado) and am not contented with an ice blended mocha with whip cream and chocolate syrup. That’s just a coffee-drink not coffee. I like coffee. The black stuff: earthy, rich, and flavorful.

Now for the good part: I recently returned on a whim to see if anything had changed in the year or so since I was last there. Lo and behold the double espresso I had was great (they even served it in a glass with a metal handle so that you would not scald your hands, fancy!). Feeling a bit hungry, I ordered a vegetarian sandwich. I’ve had many of these sandwiches and they’re usually pretty boring and bland: this one was not at all.

The clientele is still mainly locals with a few folks that seem to drive from around town to sponge off the free WiFi. I am not a big fan of free WiFi because it seems to create any space into LAPPIE-LAND, where no one speaks to each other or even acknowledges each other. All this said this spot has been become my recent haunt.

…is not everything. After having been reading much blogs about congested LA roads, the cries for better public transporation, and all about global warming I’ve come to the conclusion that folks have to realize that efficiency is not everything. Of course, when it comes to certain things it is, but for others it isn’t.

Example: Driving as fast as possible, through cross-town traffic, may seem efficient but is not always the best idea. As I’ve come to learn, it is nigh impossible to go that much faster than the rest of the traffic; it just makes your commute that much more unsafe & stressful. And when you get there the problem of parking. The finding of parking, the art of parallel parking, and the deciphering of the Street Parking signs.

I know that using the bus, the rail, going by foot or bicycle may be slower, and not as efficient but I would much prefer it (even in this rain). Walking to your post office box is so much more rewarding than hopping into your car & saving yourself 20 minutes that one usually ends up wasting on the inane and pointless.

So…get out there with your bus pass, bike, or your chevro-legs and be inefficient.

I adore a black coffee in the late afternoon, no matter the weather or the circumstances. Be it Ethiopian, Columbian, or even Australian.

All the chronically frappuccino-drinking fools would never know the beauty of that brown foam that tops a truly great coffee-pressed cup.

I adore a black coffee.

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