Current Issue
Back Issues
 Subscribe to BartBlog Feed
How to Read
Members ( need password)
Subscribe to BartCop!
Contact Us
Advertise With Us
Link to Us
Why Donate?
The Forum  -
The Reader
Poster Downloads
Shirts & Shots
BartCop Hotties
More Links
BFEE Scorecard
Perkel's Blog
Power of Nightmares
Clinton Fox Interview
Part 1, Part 2
Money Talks
Cost of Bush's greed
White Rose Society
Project 60
Chinaco Anejo


Search Now:
In Association with

Link Roll
American Politics Journal
Barry Crimmins
Betty Bowers
Consortium News 
Daily Howler
Daily Kos
Democatic Underground 
Disinfotainment Today 
Evil GOP Bastards
Faux News Channel 
Greg Palast
The Hollywood Liberal 
Internet Weekly
Jesus General
Joe Conason 
Josh Marshall
Liberal Oasis
Make Them Accountable 
Mark Morford 
Mike Malloy 
Political Humor -
Political Wire
Randi Rhodes
Rude Pundit 
Smirking Chimp
Take Back the Media
More Links


Locations of visitors to this page

Trip Report, California August 2013

We were flying to Los Angeles. The original purpose of the trip was to see our friend Perry,
but he called at the last minute to say the judge canceled court for several days so he flew home.
That's OK, there's lots to do in California and plenty of people to see and places to go.

Because of some crooked politicians, Southwest isn't allowed to fly directly to LA from Tulsa,
so we had a 90-minute layover in Vegas - could be worse. Since our next meal would be 8 PM Tulsa time,
I decided to get some of that fine food they sell at Sbarro's at the Vegas airport.

It was only $15 for spaghetti and mealballs and a bottle of water .
We still had some time to kill so I dropped a $20 in the Wheel of Fortune slot machine.
That ran down to $7 or so and then I hit the SPIN award and won $30, so I cashed out
which means I got my spaghetti and meatballs for free and made Vegas my bitch.

Back on the plane, we landed at LAX 45 minutes later. From there we hit the 405, which wasn't moving.
Really, LA?  It was 1 PM on a Monday and the freeway was totally jam-packed and hardly moving.
After 30 minutes or so, I saw Santa Monica Blvd, which was familiar to me so I took that. 

It was worse than the 405 - completely jammed tighter than a too-tight bathing suit coming home
from the beach with a bad sunburn.   (Thanks to Dan Rather for that)  Eventually I figured out that the
side streets were moving so we tried that.  We ended up on Rodeo Drive.  I was using my iPad as a map
and it said we were about to drive by The Ivy where all the movie stars eat - but we couldn't find it.
We drove right past it and the red pin said we were right on top of The Ivy, but it was poorly marked.

So it's been another hour and we were getting closer to our hotel, but we were just south of
Griffith Park and we noticed all the stores and homes had iron bars on the windows.
Suddenly I felt like Chevy Chase in the first Vacation movie, so we kept driving.

Two hours after we got our rental car, we finally made it to the hotel.
It took 45 minutes to get here from Vegas but it was a two-hour drive to the damn hotel.

Geez, you drive in Tulsa for two hours and you end up in Joplin or OKC.
To make things worse, right near our hotel was Bob Hope Airport.
Southwest Airlines calls that Burbank Airport - we could've flown almost to our hotel door,
but life can be tough when you only have an IQ of 64.

So we got settled in our hotel and before long Tommy Mack showed up to drive us to the Burbank
El Torito's where we were to meet the gang.  Funny, I've known Tommy since 2002, but I've never
been in a car when he was driving.  It was like riding Disneyland's The Matterhorn, but slightly faster.
I looked at the speedometer and it said "80" so I asked Tommy if we were late. Tommy said no
and he assured me the speed limit on LA freeways was 75 and he was barely breaking the law.
We arrived at El Torito's in record time.
Tally was there at one table. At another table were Mark, Carol and Oddcat, a regular Mystery guesser.
We were outside on the patio and it was not crowded so we just took matters into out own hands and
pushed three tables together.  Then LA Rick, the Hollywood Liberal showed up with the lovely Liz
which made 8 of us.  So, shots of Chinaco were ordered and
the party was on.

After a while, we were the only party on the patio so someone filled and lit and passed me a pipe.
WTF - this must be the kind of thing they do in LA, so we partied like we owned the place. 
The waitress eventually came back and said, "Looks like somebody's having a good time!"

Mrs. Bart was curious about "medicinal edibles" so I asked Oddcat which store she went to.
She said, "I don't go to a store - we call and they deliver it to our door."
Damn, I knew I was living in the wrong state.

After dinner we made plans for tomorrow and headed back to the hotel, but on the way,
Tommy took us for another thrilling ride on The Matterhorn, showing us some cool LA places.

That was Monday, and I didn't take a single picture.

Tuesday we were on our own so we decided to drive around LA.
We drove around Griffith Park and Mullholland Drive.

From the south of Griffith Park, you can see the looks-like-it's-moving 101 Freeway, smoggy LA and that
bare section on the middle right is the Hollywood Bowl, made famous (to us) by the Beatles in the sixties.

By the way, we were NOT smoking anything as we drove around Griffith Park.
As Nixon once said, "That would be wrong."

We saw the NBC-Universal building, where I assume they shoot The Tonight Show.

I knew if we kept driving, we'd eventually find the Hollywood sign.


Meanwhile, Chicago Jim called from LAX - he was stuck in a nightmare.
His plane was late AND they lost his luggage AND they messed up his car rental.

They told Jim they were out of cars - really, LA?
When you run out of cars you don't buy more?

That eventually got straightened out but it took so long Jim was ready to get back on a plane and fly home.
He flew in about 9 AM and we didn't see him until about 4.

So we're getting closer to Tuesday night.
Rick the Hollywood Liberal invited us to his place for music, drinks and more.
We finally found Chicago Jim, who offered to drive us to Rick's.

That evening is kind of a blur, but I remember Rick and Liz have 3 dogs, 3 cats and a lemon tree in his backyard.
I told him now he needs a lime tree. 
How cool to be making margaritas and grab a FRESH lime right off the branch and squeeze it into your glass.
Thanks for the good time, Rick, and thanks to Jim for providing safe transportation.

Wednesday we were up with the sun, but that was too late.
It took us 2.5 hours to get out of LA traffic as we headed West, then North.

BTW, driving around LA, I kept seeing street names that either reminded me of a song or Johnny Carson.
Right out of the airport, one of the first exits is the Slauson Cutoff, which makes me laugh every time.

But even regular street names, like La Cienaga or Sepulveda, remind me of Carson.
On that photo above, we're on the Ventura Highway, the highway to Ventura, which looks like this:


Now we're getting somewhere. This is what we wanted - a ride up the coast. 
It was very nice. This is a damn rich part of America, the Santa Barbara area.

We stopped to get a McMuffin and in line before us was a Tesla - I had never seen one before. (On the right)

This is a damn rich part of America, the Santa Barbara area.
We have this real estate program on the iPad  which tells you the value of nearby homes.

As we drove around West LA and then up the coast, all the houses were a million dollars, minimum.
How many millions of millionaires live in California?

And I still can't wrap my head around the house-car ratio discrepancy.

We saw million dollar homes with a piece-of-shit 98 Cavalier in the driveway. (Sorry if you drive one.)
Why live in a million dollar home and drive a $2,000 car?

Further up the coast, it just kept getting better.

I don't know what you like to do on vacation, but we like to  "become one with nature" and enjoy the scnery.

Mrs. Bart said, "This sure beats sitting at my desk at work."

We drove until we got tired and grabbed a sleazy motel.
The moon was full that Wednesday night, so I took a picture.

                                                                   I always like to take one "arty" picture.

Thursday we started out by texting Marc Perkel to see if he was up for a visit - he's in Gilroy, CA
Last time we visited Marc was 2009 and it was almost 100 degrees in Gilroy.

This time it was f-ing gorgeous, maybe 68 degrees or so.  Since we were there last,
Perkel put a pergula off his front porch and some cool decking with a gazebo out back.

It was the perfect place to sit back - and relax - and enjoy the cool summer breeze.
Once again, I tried to straighten him out on Snowden, but he was having none of it.

After a brief stay we were back on the road - and now we were headed to Tommy's f-ing Tequila!  Woo Hoo!

It's a good drive from Gilroy to Tommy's, maybe 90 minutes or so.
Traffic moves pretty fast on the 101 and I had to do some trickey maneuvering (it's called driving) to get
from the 101 to the 1, which carries one to Tommy's AND that one fancy orange bridge they're so proud of.


Finally we made it to Tommy's.
My heart starts beating faster as I anticipate opening their front door.

We sat down at the two finest barstools in the world, as far as I'm concerned:

BOOM!  There it is.
We saw lots of fine scenery when we were in California, but this really takes the cake.

I've uploaded a shorter-than 3 minute video of Tommy's bartender making a margarita.
(I screwed up the notes on Youtube - anybody know how to fix that?)

Watch at the 1:52 mark - You will not believe how fast this man can de-juice a pair of limes.
Notice also, he sticks a clean straw into the possibly-finished margarita to quality taste test it.
At Tommy's they don't serve a margarita until it's perfect.

Check it out - A a $350 shot - and it's f-ing Jose Cuervo.

I just had a regular Tommy's margarita because I was driving.
As we were leaving I asked if they had any Tommy's shotglasses for sale.

Rusty likes to kick them off the kitchen counter so I wanted to get more.

         "I plead guilty, Your Honor."

They perhaps misunderstood because they GAVE us two hand-blown, Tommy's-embossed shotglasses.

In the years of going there, I've never talked to anyone who was fluent in English
but I love to hear them pronounce the names of the different tequilas.
They say it differently than we say it in Oklahoma.

OK, back on the road.

OK, there it is - that bridge they write the songs about.

From there, we drove north, amongst the big trees.

For miles and miles, nothing but nature, trees and clean, crisp air.
Each one of those trees was belching pure oxygen at us like crazy.

No boom boxes, no TV, no crowds, no kids, no e-mail, no Twitter - just Mother Nature at her best (cough)!

Again, we drove until we got tired, (30-second video here) then grabbed a really cheap hotel.

How cheap was it?
Mrs Bart slept in her clothes on top of the bedspread.
That's her way of telling me we could've done better hotel-wise.

Was she angry?  Did she complain?
Nah, she ate a cookie that put her right to sleep.  Thanks to you know who you are :)

The next day it was back to the Big City and the official Tommy's meet & greet.

Not sure where this is, but everyone likes a tunnel, right?

We secured a hotel and got ready for Tommy's.

We got there right at 5 PM and grabbed table No 3 so I could watch the front door.

Sorry again for the disconnect - I can't believe we were yards away from each other.

I ordered a shot of Chinaco Anejo (I think it was $10 - cheap) and Mrs Bart got her favorite,
a margarita with Corrallejo Reposado, on the rocks, salt around the rim.  Hmmm, good.

Look at the size of that pour, a $10 shot of God's Finest Nectar.  No wonder Tommy's Mexican is The Greatest Place on Earth.

She got Cheese Casadillas, maybe, I got Cheese enchildas and a taco.

Yes, it looks like a mess but it tastes like $500 but only cost $13.95
Check out that taco, upper left.
That's a Mexican taco, not a Sears taco.  (Salute to Frank!)

Once again, sorry to Clint and Bob and Rohn and Tommy M and Catherine.
I guess we'll just have to come back and do it right next time.

So now it's 6:45 or so and since we are creatures of habit, we drove to Twin Peaks.
If you don't know, Twin Peaks is two very tall mountains right square in the damn middle
of some of the most expensive real estate in America. 

This is the shot they use on that Toyota commerecial.

If you're there at the right time, in this case it was 7 PM or so, you can watch the fog roll in.

Yep, it would be fun to live in San Francisco, but I'm not a millionaire.

We got the iPad with Zillow going again and the prices would knock you down.
$1.4M,  $1.6M,  $1.6M,  $1.8M  allllll the way down the block, mile after mile.

From there it was back to the hotel to rest up for the early flight tomorrow.

We had a great time in California.

Thanks to Oddcat for the Afghan scarf mufflers.
They came in handy on a breezy summer day in San Francisco.

I'd also like to thank the predatory jackals at Chase Manhattan for the free airfare.
Without you bastards, we'd be taking our vacations in Kansas City or St Louis.

I wish this Califormia 2013 Trip Report was more exciting, but when I'm in charge,
there are no car wrecks, no shootings, no kidnappings, no arrests, no hospital visits, etc.


Send e-mail to Bart

  Back to



Send e-mail to Bart

  Back to


Privacy Policy
. .