Friday, January 28, 2011

wait til the summer comes along

These are the photos from when I took my dad hiking last weekend and almost killed him. My brother and his girlfriend also joined. I do lots of hiking here in Palos Verdes. It's really peaceful and scenic too. I think this is the first time I've hiked with family, not including Anna, of course.

Portugeuse Bend, Palos Verdes





sorry, it's kind of hard to tell what I'm wearing.

Outfit -- hot pink 80s ruffle top, vintage tan shorts, (thrifted). 80s Vision Street Wear High tops.

Happy weekend, friends.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

meet my dad, Alford.

Reid & Alford
The first time my daddy came to California he was 16 years old. He was hanging around his brother in law’s filling station, passing time on a humid Summer day, daydreaming about life outside these North Carolina hills and dirt roads, when a college graduate from Durham, NC, rolled into town in his 1941 Willys Farm truck, in route to beautiful Cal-i-for-ni-a. “I’ve always wanted to go to California,” said my dad eagerly, in his thick and slow southern drawl (which he still maintains today, despite having lived in Cali for over 30 years). He was a skinny, freckled, toe-head back then with the heart of a rambler and the pockets of a pauper. Though his name was Johnny, just about everyone called him by his middle name “Alford.,” as they are prone to do in the South. Some of his kinfolk called him "Cotton" on account of his light-colored hair.
Dad portrait
The college grad and the country boy rode along route 66, picking up hitchhikers along the way. Eventually, my dad found himself in Venice Beach, California, where the kind stranger found him a room. For money, my dad danced in front of a jukebox in a restaurant situated on the now defunct “POP”, Pacific Ocean Park Amusement Pier (1958-1967) in Santa Monica. I imagine he did the hambone and played the spoons. The proprietor of the joint took a liking to my dad, and hired him to work as a bus boy, but my dad didn't stay on long. He heard the train whistle blow, and headed back home. As a parting gift, some ladies bought him a sailor cap. Before his train ride, my dad went into a restaurant and had a cup of coffee. Back then, you’d get a monetary reward if you reported a service man gone “A-wall.” Because he was wearing a sailor cap, the waitress must have thought my dad was in the service because when he exited the restaurant he was greeted by policemen who began to question him and even went through his suitcase to determine if he were an “a-wall” marine. When they found that he was just a kid headed home, the police let him go.
Pacific Ocean Park
My dad told me this story last night, though I had previously heard bits and pieces. I believe he hasn’t changed much. He’s always had little to no money and a big personality, and he’s always been driven to get up and go. For a long time now – nearly 30 years – his ramblin bones have taken the shape of a missionary, and God is his GPS, and sometimes this GPS seems to go a little haywire just like mine does. These days, dad is set on going to Indonesia. Half of me hopes that he makes it there and the other half of me wishes he’d just settle down and stay where he is needed. He does a lot of volunteer work in senior centers and the old folks really take to him. I sometimes think it’s a shame when he cuts out. Sometimes, his wanderings seem aimless, like a child lost in the super market, and then I start to feel sorry for him. Then I think of what Franz Kafka said, “You are free and that is why you are lost.” Though I haven't always supported his rambling way, I admire his ability to take the path less straight so that he can fulfill his purpose.
Here's Johnny
A favorite photo of my dad & Anna from Thanksgiving 2009. My dad is a virtuoso tambourine player. You may also notice some other instruments in his hands -- the spoons and the kazoo.
yes, that's my dad with spoons, tambourine, and kazoo in his hand
My dad is wearing that shirt in every picture of him since 2004. You can buy one for $10 if you want.

By the way, in that first photo, my dad is the taller of the two boys.

To be continued ...

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

orange creamsicle cowgirl

Sometimes a haywire GPS is a blessing in disguise. On the way to pick up Pete from the Ontario airport, the GPS told me to get off on a street that contradicted my written directions. Taking the word of modern technology, I was led not to the airport, but to a street in which stood The Hat, where you can buy a mean pastrami sandwich, as well as the road to Mount Baldy. After picking Pete up at the airport, we headed out to eat pastrami sandwiches & then hike around a bit in some unchartered territory. I was very much in need of an outdoor walk; My dad is still staying at my house & I’m kind of losing my mind. My dad is always performing and it can be very embarrassing, mortifying even. If a pile of money doesn’t fall into his lap by the end of the week so that he can go minister in Indonesia, he is supposed to be headed back to the South. I need my life back! I will introduce him to you with pictures in a later post.

that’s my red jeep over there. She will never die. Nearly 240,000 miles on her too.

Oh ya, I noticed I have some new followers, and I’m really flattered. Thanks!

Outfit: BDG orange creamsicle dress, which I think was originally from Urban Outfitters; ankle cowboy boots (thrifted), 50s cowboy hat (antique mall)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Fancy Disaster

My girlfriend, Stacy, has a really cute vintage store in Long Beach called Fancy Disaster. She has a wide array of darling vintage dresses, as well as a ton of vintage hats! Last weekend, I went to her store to play dress up, as ya'll know I love to do.
1930s dress

If you live in Southern California, you should definitely check out her store. She has great vintage at affordable prices. She also has an Etsy store for those who live elsewhere.

Sorry, I've been m.i.a. lately. I've been irritable on account of nicotine withdrawals, my dad is staying at my house, and I work 40 hours a week at a job that doesn't really suit my personality. I didn't want to come online and bitch & moan because truly I like to motivate people, and I want to be a positive place for my readers to go. I hope ya'll are well! I'll have more to say soon.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

we would have been friends alright

karlheinz weinberger

I was pretty much floored when i saw Karlheinz Weinberger's 1960s photos of Swiss rebel youth via refinery 29. What style! Dig the over-sized bullet chain necklace, the massive belt buckles, and the 50s cowboy boots. I love how they exaggerate the 50s, creating a style all their own. You can buy the book here, but it's not available until February 8, 2011. I will definitely be buying myself a copy.

teach your children well



Irvine Regional Park



“Hey, Anna, you wanna run up that hill with me?”
“Not really.”
“Come on. I just watched you play on 2 playgrounds. Auntie likes to play too.”
“Oh ok.”
“Wow, this is a really steep hill. Are you sure you can do this?”
“ I can just try my best.”
“Goodness, I’m getting tired.”
“You can do it Auntie because you’re big and strong.”
“ Geez, Anna, I can’t believe you’re doing this uphill hike with me, especially since your legs are so much smaller than mine.”
“That’s because I play and jump around and have lots of energy all day long.”
“Well, you should probably get some rest sometimes. We’re almost to the top. ... We made it”
“Yay, we made it! “ I have to go pee.”
“Why didn’t you go when I asked you at the bottom of the hill?”
“I didn’t have to go then.”
“Well, we’ll head back down. But if you really have to go, why don’t you just cop a squat.”
“What does that mean?”
“Squat down and pee. Don’t pee on your shoes or on your clothes. ”
“ Will people see me?”
“There’s noone here.”
“I don’t know.”
“You’re going to have to do it at some point in your life, believe me.”
“ Oh, ok. I can just try my best. ..... I can’t do it.”
“Alright, next time. Let’s race down the hill and get you to the bathroom.”

Monday, January 17, 2011


Here I am kicking up my new Stuart Weitzman shoes, bought at Nordstrom's Rack with a gift certificate. They were on super sale, nearly $300 off the original price.
new shoes
enjoying my lunch break outdoors
unable to resist bbq.
bbq truck
posing in front of passed out drunk dude
hey dude, you're passed out in my photo
admiring my recently thrifted 80s lavender pumps & listening to favorite record by Abner Jay
new to me 80s lavender pumps
drinking soda pop at Joe Jost's, Long Beach's oldest bar.
drinkin soda pop at Joe Jost's, oldest bar in LBC
I've had an enjoyable week filled with soda pop, bbq, and amazing new shoes. There have been some milestones too, including smoking my last cigarette. Yippee! Also, my pops is in town. I took him hiking today. He really enjoyed it until we got to the uphill climb on our way back to the car. My younger brother & his girlfriend hiked back to the car and were going to pick us up, but they got lost, and my dad & I made it back to the car (walking along the road, and resting often in the shade) at the same time as they did. My dad said we had bragging rights, and we sure did. My dad is going up to the mountains for a few days to pray. I reckon I'll be trying to exercise & enjoying my life as a non-smoker.

Thank you for reading my blog, friends.

Outfit # 1: 80s Contempo Casuals leggings,(thrifted) Stuart Weitzman shoes.
Outfit # 2: in mirror, turtleneck, cigarette pants,(thrifted), Cole Haan lavender
Outfit # 3: vintage 50s green gingham dress, vintage leather belt, Bugle Boy sweater (everything thrifted) 50s western tie(etsy)
Outfit #4: 90s boyfriend blazer, 70s lace bell top, 80s leather shorts, 80s lavender pumps (everything thrifted). 50s western tie (etsy)

Sunday, January 16, 2011

80s bus stop

I've been dying to take some outfit photos at the 80s bus stop. Today, Pete and I rode our bikes to fulfill this fantasy of mine. I think this may be my favorite photo shoot yet.

80s bus stop

generation x sunglasses

favorite photo ever

Outfit: 90s teal overalls, 80s sequin bustier, 90s clear sunglasses, 80s pastel kicks, 80s cross necklace (everything thrifted)

Photos taken by Pete with my Pentax Spotmatic.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

a very Nagel morning

I'm having so much fun this morning! I had my first day of photography class, and what a hoot that was. Our class is located in an seemingly abandoned area of the campus, so everyone was running late trying to find it, including the teacher. When I walked in, some students turned around and asked "Are you our teacher?" I jokingly replied "I'm older, but I'm not your teacher." Later, a sweet young gal turned around and assured me that I don't look old. I wasn't the oldest in the class, besides, not that any of this matters. There was a cute older black man in suspenders next to me. The teacher was hilarious and told of the dangerous situations she used to place herself in in order to get a good photo. One time, she saw a bunch of gang bangers, wearing their colors, and she asked if she could take their picture. "Hold on, they said, and went in the house. When they came out, they were armed with guns and ready to pose. I can't tell you how often I want to ask perfect strangers if I can take their picture because they look so dang interesting. For instance, yesterday, a group of teenagers came onto the Metro Blue Line looking like Kid and Play but 50s style. like a hybrid of Kid & Play and Happy Days. They were dancing on the metro, laying down moves I have never really seen, and making quite a scene. I had my point and shoot Olympus in my purse, but I wussed out. I hope this class gives me more courage to take photos of all the interesting peeps I see.

After class, I walked home, a good 17 blocks (how many miles is that?). I stopped by Salvation Army where everything was 40% off. I loaded up on lots of colorful vintage clothes & I can't wait to show you. A lot of it will be going in the shop. A short walk can seem infinitely longer when one is loaded down with thrift store finds.

After getting out of the shower, I threw on this very Patrick Nagel 80s outfit, and let my eyes wander happily amongst Nagel's illustrations. The gals he draws are so sexy, athletic, powerful, confident, and sassy. I really love their hair dos! I truly could have taken photos of every page of his illustrations -- the pictures are that bloody good.

It's so lovely today, like a perfect summer's day. I probably won't prance around town in this very Nagel outfit, but it feels good wearing it inside, as the sun shines through the blinds. I hope ya'll are having a wonderful Saturday!

Listening to: Pass the Dutchie
Wearing: vintage "Yes" 80s striped crop top, 80s Sergio Valente cut off shorts, 80s pastel kicks, pastel plaid 80s belt (everything thrifted), Mac "Amplified" lip stick.
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