Saturday Night! Mexican food, Blues music and BBQ in Pasadena, California

Saturday Night! Mexican food, Blues music and BBQ in Pasadena, California

So you’re probably wondering about the title….here’s the story:

We got invited to see and hear a blues band play in Pasadena on Saturday night at a place called Big Mama’s Rib Shack. I was not responsible for the planning or execution, once again I was a passenger along for the ride.

Someone may have told someone that the Rib Shack’s food wasn’t good, so the plan was to eat before the show and the decision was to go for Mexican food.

Two Tacos at La Fiesta Grande Mexican Restaurant

Take the 101 freeway south to the 134 east past Glendale and into Pasadena. I wanted to take more pictures along the way, but “stupid” traffic had us running late to dinner. We finally arrived (only ten minutes late) at the restaurant and found a good parking spot on the street right out front.

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La Fiesta Grande Mexican Restaurant in South Pasadena

The restaurant is a relatively small place, with simple Mexican decor, and it quickly filled up with people once we were seated. We ordered drinks and then perused the menu.

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La Fiesta Grande Mexican Restaurant in South Pasadena

 

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La Fiesta Grande Mexican Restaurant in South Pasadena

 

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La Fiesta Grande Mexican Restaurant in South Pasadena

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It’s a standard Mexican restaurant menu with tacos, burritos, enchiladas and the usual appetizers and entrees. EXCEPT THE FOOD IS GREAT! IT’S REAL MEXICAN FOOD! 

On the Menu: 2 crispy tacos, one shredded beef and one chicken, two chicken enchiladas in mole sauce with rice & beans, chips & salsa and a margarita pre show!

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Margarita – with a lot of tequila!

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Two Crispy Tacos – One Chicken & One Beef with Chips & Salsa

Really good crispy tacos! Excellent Mole sauce! Gringo style Mexican food done right!

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Two Chicken Enchiladas with Mole Sauce and Rice & Beans

I was told that we would be eating at the show later, so I didn’t try a burrito, a combo or the Fiesta platter of appetizers…and I would happily go back. They also have an “All you can eat” Taco special that I would like to try.

We finished eating and then motored across Pasadena to Big Mama’s Rib Shack.

Blues & BBQ at Big Mama’s Rib Shack in Pasadena, California

Go north up Lake Avenue, past The Hat (really good pastrami sandwiches) and Roscoe’s Chicken & Waffles, and you’ll come to Big Mama’s BBQ Southern Country Rib Shack.

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Big Mama’s Rib Shack in Pasadena

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Big Mama’s Rib Shack in Pasadena – Southern Country BBQ

The building’s not much to look at and the interior design is “whacked”. There are white vinyl booths on one side, tables in the middle with both plastic and wood chairs, and a beer & wine bar in the corner of the dining room. there was an area cleared as a stage (but no stage) next to the bar and a small area for the band’s merchandise as well. They have Saturday night performances, but it’s not real design as a performance space at all.

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Big Mama’s Rib Shack in Pasadena

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Big Mama’s Rib Shack in Pasadena

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Heineken

Here’s the menu: pork, chicken, seafood or beef, beer, wine and soft drinks and a full list of classic BBQ sides. Tickets were $20 for the show and dinner was also required, so we ordered food, with the plan to take home a good portion for lunch on Sunday.

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What’s on the Menu at Big Mama’s Rib Shack?

On the Menu: BBQ Baby Back Ribs, mac’n’cheese, hush puppies, cornbread muffins, collared greens, yams & Heineken beer

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BBq dinner

There were only two servers and a bartender covering the crowd, so we ordered before the first set and the food came during the performance before the intermission. And contrary to what we had been told, the food was good (not great, but good) country BBQ.

8:00pm – SHOWTIME!  John Németh and his blues band from Memphis, Tennessee

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John Németh from Memphis, Tennessee

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He Brought His Many Harps! (Blues Harmonicas)

I checked out the merchandise and the band’s setup before the show. I had never seen or heard the band before, but when I saw the collection of harps I knew it was going to be a good show. And I was not disappointed, the music was great!

John Németh and his blues band played two rockin’ sets of Chicago and Texas inspired music. He really is a master of the harp (blues harmonica) and his backing band was tight! The guitar, bass and drums were well rehearsed from playing gigs all over the country. At one point in the second set a guest bassist ( a former band member) stepped in for a few songs. I periscoped three of the songs and links to the live performance videos are located below.

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RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO VIEW LINK AND VIDEOS>

Rockin’ Blues on Periscope> view on YouTube

More Rockin’ Blues on Periscope> view on YouTube

Even more Rockin’ Blues on Periscope> view on YouTube

The “JoshWillTravel AdventureScope” is now available on Youtube!> https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoP3QQfRTfD-2eABWVd-JwQ

The John Németh website> www.johnnemeth.com

John Németh’s Upcoming Gigs! Check them out if you can!

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La Fiesta Grande1107 Mission St, South Pasadena, CA 91030 (I’m told the Colorado Blvd location is closed)

Big Mama’s Rib Shack1453 N. Lake Ave, Pasadena, CA 91104 http://www.bigmamaspasadena.com

All photos copyright 2016 JoshWillTravel

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Dinner Party at Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks

Dinner Party at Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks

A rainy Wednesday night and it was someone’s birthday! (not mine)

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Dinner Party at Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks

We were going to have Indian food and a party at the house, but I suggested Dinner at Cafe Bizou instead! We made a reservation last week for a party of nine at 6:30pm. When we arrived the table was ready and waiting. Of course, we didn’t arrive all at once…

They have convenient Valet Parking on Ventura Blvd and there’s also parking in the rear. It’s also possible to find street parking because they’re not in the middle of restaurant row and I’ve parked in the bank lot across the street after hours on occasion.

The first thing you’ll notice when you enter is that it’s in a house that’s been remodeled as a restaurant. There’s a nice bar but the bar area is small, also functions as the waiting area, and the path of service runs through the bar to the dining room. The large dining room is divided into two spaces and each has a difference ambiance, but also the same.

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Dinner Party at Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks

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Dinner Party at Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks

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Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks

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Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks

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Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks

They also have a “patio area” in front, which is enclosed, covered and heated at night. It’s a very nice place for an intimate and/or romantic dinner.

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Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks – “Patio Area”

The food is great. The food is reasonably priced. They have a good selection of wine at a fair market price and a very reasonable corkage fee if you want to bring your own bottle(s).

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On the Menu: Steak & Shrimp au poivre with baked potato, fried calamari, caesar salad, bread & butter, creme brûlée, chocolate covered profiteroles with vanilla ice cream and a coke. Also had a couple lamb chops that were orphaned and a taste of tiramisu.

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Fresh Baked Bread and Butter

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Fried Calamari

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Caesar Salad

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Steak & Shrimp with Baked Potato

And for Dessert: They brought the flourless chocolate cake with a candle for the birthday girl and half of us ordered dessert. I love their creme brûlée! I also had a little taste of the profiteroles and tiramisu, but passed on cappuccino or coffee.

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Creme Brûlée

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Chocolate Covered Profiteroles with Vanilla Ice Cream

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Tiramisu

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Flourless Chocolate Cake with Whipped Cream

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We really like Cafe Bizou! It’s a very comfortable environment and the dress code is casual to dressy without comment. Diners in jeans, shorts and t-shirts sitting next to executives in coats and ties is perhaps too common an occurrence, but the restaurant really all about the great food and pleasant dining experience.

The service is excellent! The wait staff and busboys are constantly in motion, well trained and pretty attentive to the tables and guests’ needs. Refills and requests are handled promptly and the courses are timed out for dining at a relaxed pace.

Again, it’s very reasonably priced for fine dining and they have a nice selection of food! (Check out the menu above)

They are open for Lunch, Brunch and Dinner.
Reservations in advance are recommended because “you never know”.

Cafe Bizou
14016 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks, CA 91423  (818) 788-3536

All photos copyright 2016 JoshWillTravel

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Read the previous Blog “Lunch at Cafe Bizou in Sherman Oaks”> http://wp.me/p3dhVM-ll

 

Downtown Los Angeles 2013

Well, I just found a draft of a Downtown Los Angeles Blog from 2013 and the pictures were all laid out with captions. So I thought for the third year anniversary I would work it up a little and publish it for your entertainment.

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Los Angeles Times Travel Show (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

I was invited down to L.A. Live in DTLA for lunch and a private tour of the Grammy Museum courtesy of AEG. I was working a deal to package their events with travel and destination specific tours. At the time when this was written I was a newbie travel advisor and set this deal with AEG up for the agency immediately. This lunch meeting was to discuss all the details and I’ll write more on the outcome later in this Blog.

The day included freeway traffic in both directions from the San Fernando Valley, driving around DTLA, parking at Staples Center and L.A. Live, a nice lunch at Rock’N’Fish and a private tour of the Grammy Museum and the AEG offices.

Here’s the Blog and please note the pics were shot with a Blackberry camera.

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There was traffic on the 101 Freeway heading Downtown (as usual).

101 Freeway Traffic - Downtown in the Distance (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

101 Freeway Traffic – Downtown in the Distance (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Downtown - This is where once got a flat tire at Midnight (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

101 – 110 Freeway South Exchange – Downtown, Los Angeles – This shoulder is where I once got a flat tire at Midnight (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

110 Freeway south - Downtown, Los Angeles (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

110 Freeway south – Downtown, Los Angeles (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

110 Freeway South

110 Freeway South

110 Freeway South

110 Freeway South

Convention Center or Staples Center (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Convention Center or Staples Center?  (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Los Angeles Convention Center

L.A. Convention Center

L.A. Convention Center (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

L.A. Convention Center

L.A. Convention Center (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

L.A. Convention Center

L.A. Convention Center (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Staples Center

Up the Escalator - L.A. LIVE (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Up the Escalator – L.A. LIVE (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

L.A.'s Finest at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

L.A.’s Finest at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Ritz-Carlton and J.W. Marriott Hotels at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Ritz-Carlton and J.W. Marriott Hotels at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Staples Center (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Staples Center (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Staples Center (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Staples Center (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Staples Center - Chick Hearn Plaza

Staples Center – Chick Hearn Plaza (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Staples Center - Chick Hearn Plaza

Staples Center – Chick Hearn Plaza (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

L.A. Live

L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Lunch at Rock'N'Fish - L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Lunch at Rock’N’Fish – L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Lunch at Rock’N’Fish!  We shared a Calamari appetizer (no pic, but it was good), then I had the 1/2 rack of Baby Back Ribs with fries and a salad, and Creme Brulee for dessert.  The food was excellent!  The calamari and ribs were tasty and cooked perfectly, and the creme brulee was delicious too.

Luxe Hotel (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Luxe Hotel Downtown Los Angeles (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

The Grammy Museum at L.A. Live – Would you like a private tour?

Grammy Museum at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Grammy Museum at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

In the Lobby of the Grammy Museum at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Janis Joplin’s Porsche 356 in the Lobby of the Grammy Museum at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Photographs are not allowed inside the museum., but I was able to take a picture of the Janis car in the Lobby before taking a private tour. It’s a great space and the permanent and visiting exhibits were pretty spectacular!

NOTE: Dec. 10, 2015 – A 1964 Porsche 356 that once belonged to the rock singer Janis Joplin sold at auction for $1.76 million. The car had been expected to sell for between $400,000 and $600,000. The sale price includes a 10% commission for Sotheby’s auction house.

The Plaza at L.A. Live

The Plaza at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

The Plaza - L.A. Live

The Plaza – L.A. Live

The Plaza at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

The Plaza at L.A. Live (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

J.W. Marriott and the Ritz-Carlton Hotel (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

J.W. Marriott and the Ritz-Carlton Hotel (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Downtown Los Angeles

Condo

717 Condo – Downtown Los Angeles

Downtown

Downtown Los Angeles

Downtown

Downtown Los Angeles

Westin Bonaventure Hotel

Westin Bonaventure Hotel and the Wells Fargo Towers

Wedbush Building - Downtown Los Angeles

Wedbush Building – Downtown Los Angeles

Four Level Freeway - Downtown Los Angeles

Four Level Freeway – Downtown Los Angeles

Under the Freeway - Downtown

Under the Freeway – Downtown Los Angeles

Under the Freeway

Under the Freeway – Downtown Los Angeles

 

NOTE: As you can see, there was a lot of the Blog laid out but never finished.

The meeting was a great success! I had a terrific lunch and a private tour of the Grammy Museum. I was gifted a couple of FREE tickets to return another time on my own. I wasn’t able to tour the Staples Center because Rihanna was rehearsing for her concert that night (if I remember right, and we would get a private tour of Staples Center on my next visit). It was a good day downtown and they did comp my parking!

The deal included access to the Grammy Museum and the 200 seat performance space, AEG events at L.A. Live and Staples Center including the Kings, Clippers, and Stars games; the BET Experience and other concerts (including corporate CLUB BOXES) and the L.A. Galaxy soccer (fútbol) games. It was a major score! But, the best laid plans….la la la.

All photos copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel

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Here are a couple more recent picture of DTLA from the Echo Park Blog:

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US District Court Building & Los Angeles City Hall

 

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Echo Park – Downtown Los Angeles, California


“Just listen to the music of the traffic in the city
Linger on the sidewalk where the neon signs are pretty
How can you lose?
The lights are much brighter there
You can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares and go
Downtown, things’ll be great when you’re
Downtown, no finer place for sure,
Downtown, everything’s waiting for you
Downtown!”

Downtown Los Angeles is the central area of the Los Angeles metropolitan area and features many of the city’s major arts institutions and sports facilities, sightseeing opportunities, a variety of skyscrapers and associated large multinational corporations, and an array of public art and unique shopping opportunities. Downtown Los Angeles is the hub of the city’s freeway network and Metro rapid transit system.

Staples Center, opened in 1999, has contributed immensely to the revitalization of Downtown, adding 250 events and nearly 4 million visitors per year to the neighborhood.  Since the opening of the Staples Center, the adjacent L.A. Live complex was completed, which includes the Nokia Theater, the Regency Theaters and the Grammy Museum.

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Downtown Los Angeles from up high 2014 (taken from WP24)!

Happy Valentine’s Day! Cooking a nice steak dinner!

Happy Valentine’s Day! Cooking a nice steak dinner!

This Blog entry is about FOOD. Good Food! Food that’s good for you!
If you’re not into reading about a nice steak dinner, please move along.

It was a beautiful Sunday in the San Fernando Valley today. The weather was great! The first Sunday after football is always the hardest… but a beautiful day makes it easier.

Valentine’s Day is such a rip-off holiday. So, instead of going out and paying triple for dinner, I decided to cook a really nice holiday feast.

On the Menu: Teriyaki bone-in ribeye steaks, baked potato, steamed broccoli and carrots, green salad with ranch dressing, challah bread, red wine and a coke.

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Cooking a steak dinner!

Defrosted a couple of bone-in ribeye steaks, prepped the potato, yam & vegetables and then made the salad. Timed it out perfectly and everything was done just right.

Nothing fancy, just a nice dinner at home.

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Cooking a steak dinner!

Green salad with iceberg lettuce, celery, carrot and cheese.

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Cooking a steak dinner!

Sauteed the red onions, marinaded the meat and pan cooked the steak. One steak cooked rare, one cooked medium rare. (leftovers for tomorrow: steak and eggs maybe?)

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Cooking a steak dinner!

Baked potato and yam, coated with olive oil, salt & pepper and cooked wrapped in tin foil. Topped with a little butter, salt & pepper and I left the sour cream in the fridge…

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Cooking a steak dinner!

Steamed carrots and broccoli (don’t overcook!) cooked to slightly crunchy.

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Cooking a steak dinner!

Very happy with the final results! Better than most restaurants and a lot less expensive.

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Cooking a steak dinner!

Chocolate Chip Cookies for dessert. Happy Valentine’s Day!

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p.s. The feast was appreciated.

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Visit our other facebook page (Ashland is the home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival):
Experience Ashland Oregon with JoshWillTravel> www.facebook.com/theatreinashland

 

Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen

Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen

Wednesday night in the San Fernando Valley, let’s go out to eat!

We were going to go to CPK (California Pizza Kitchen) in Tarzana, but there were a bunch of people waiting in the small reception area when we arrived. The confused looking hostess told us there were six parties in front of us and there would be a 35 minute wait to be seated, even though we could see more than ten empty tables on one side of the restaurant through the floor to ceiling glass windows that line the front.

After considering our options, we decided to go to Frankie’s Italian Kitchen a few blocks away on Reseda boulevard.

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Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen on Reseda Blvd in Tarzana

Frankie’s has been in the same location since 1993, and I have fond memories of meeting my Grandmother (of blessed memory) here for their “early-bird” special. I hadn’t been back in long time. They renovated and upgraded the decor, and enlarged the front patio, but they still serve the same Italian classics, and they still have an “early-bird” special menu before 6pm Monday-Thursday.

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Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen – open prep area, cashier & host desk

It’s not a big space, but not small either. There’s an open prep area behind the cashier and host desk as you enter and the dining room to the left. They have regulars and there are groups that meet here for both lunch and dinner, and even when it’s crowded, it’s not loud. Dine indoors or al fresco on the patio which is inside the Gelson’s parking lot and not actually on Reseda Blvd., so there’s a lot less traffic going by.

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Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen – Dining Room

The menu is classic Italian fare. Pizza, pasta, chops, and even a selection of veal dishes. Normally I would have had fried calamari and lasagna, but instead opted for a pasta entree with a side salad. We didn’t order any appetizers, drinks or wine and instead drank ice water. Yes, I know, but we’re trying to save money and calories this month.

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Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen – Dinner Menu

On the Menu: buttered garlic rolls, caesar side salad and chicken fettucine alfredo. We also ordered a broccoli fusilli pasta (it was split and a 1/2 order is pictured below).

And for dessert they were all out of tiramisu….

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Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen – Buttered Garlic Rolls

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Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen – Caesar Side Salad

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Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen – Chicken Fettucine Alfredo

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Dinner at Frankie’s Italian Kitchen – 1/2 Order of Broccoli Fusilli Pasta 

The food is very good. Italian classics done right! The fresh baked rolls are served hot and covered in butter and garlic. So good, I requested a second basket. The chicken fettucine alfredo and broccoli fusilli pasta dishes were delicious. I’ve had the lasagna and can definitely recommend it.  And as I mentioned, they were out of tiramisu! It’s real good stuff, and they must have had an “early bird” rush, but an Italian restaurant should never run out of tiramisu! Very disappointed, but I left the restaurant very full and happy with some leftover rolls and pasta for the next day.

Frankie’s Italian Kitchen – 5538 Reseda Blvd. Tarzana, CA 91356 (818) 705-1295
and 267 N. Pass Ave. Burbank, CA 91505 (818) 567-2288  www.frankiesonline.com
Hours: Mon – Thurs 11am – 9:30pm Fri – Sat 11am – 10pm Sun 4pm – 9pm

 

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Chinese New Year! Mardi Gras! Wine Wednesday! Denver Broncos!

Monday was CHINESE NEW YEAR! – Gung Hay Fat Choy!

2016Monkey Year of the Yang Red Fire Monkey!

Yesterday was FAT TUESDAY! MARDI GRAS! – Bon Temp Roulez!
HEY NOW! HEY NOW! AIKO! AIKO! un-day!
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Mardi Gras 2016!

 

 

 

 

 

“Iko Iko” by the Dixie Cups> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0wNSHPQj0W8

 

Yesterday was also the
Denver Broncos Super Bowl Super Tuesday Concert & Parade!

GO BRONCOS! NFL SUPER BOWL 50 CHAMPIONS!
Final Score Denver 24 – Carolina 10

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Broncos Country turned out in force to celebrate the Super Bowl victory in Denver! 

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Peyton wanted the ball from the two-point conversion pass from Bennie, so he traded a signed game jersey for it. He got the ball, but Von Miller got the cover of Sports Illustrated.

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Two-point conversion! 

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Two-point conversion game ball

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Autographed Peyton Manning Game Jersey

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Von Miller – Super Bowl 50 MVP on the cover!

and Today is Wine Wednesday!

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Wine Wednesday! Gundlach Bundschu Tempranillo

CHEERS! Have a great day!

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p.s. Losing hit Cam Newton hard – like the Denver Broncos Defense!

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p.s. FIRE PHIL SIMMS! Here are a few more posts from Sunday’s Super Bowl:

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Broncos Country! 1,000,000 Broncos Fans Celebrate without incident!

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Super Bowl 50 – BRONCOS WIN!

Super Bowl 50 – DENVER BRONCOS WIN!

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It’s Monday afternoon, the day after. Did you go to work today?

I have a massive headache.

I guess it’s a good headache. I celebrated the Broncos winning Super Bowl 50!

(Read the previous Blog for the “set-up” on the Denver Broncos and Super Bowl 50)

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I predicted the Broncos would win 27-17, the final score was 24-10.

And there was much rejoicing! The Denver Orange Rush – Orange Crush 2.0 DOMINATED! Fans celebrated into the night and early morning, both in Denver and around the world. Peyton Manning got another ring, drank a lot of Budweiser and went to Disneyland today!

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We had a party and watched the game.

On the Menu: Baked Buffalo wings, crudité plate with ranch dressing, garlic hummus & fresh made guacamole with tortilla chips, pistachio nuts, Doritos cool ranch chips, lightly salted peanuts, mini twist pretzels, pepperoncini kettle chips and MEGA peanut M&Ms. NOTE: It was a non-alcohol day, so orange/pineapple/cran-raspberry juice, iced espresso and coke were the beverages of the day. And of course there were Oranges!

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ORANGE! GO BRONCOS!

Halftime Show (for better or worse)

Coldplay just sucks. Pop music that doesn’t matter. Someone asked when they saw the rainbow motif, “Are they gay?” Other really snarky comments were tweeted. Then Bruno Mars got uptown funky, and was the highlight of the Halftime show, you can’t not like him. And then we were treated to Beyonce’s crotch! I think I like her old stuff better. Nothing wrong with a little “booty-shaking” at the Super Bowl though! It was better than “Up With People” or the New Kids On The Block. I was entertained (for better or worse).

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Bruno Mars getting’ uptown funky at Halftime!

 

BRONCOS FOR THE WIN!

Big Congratulations to everyone involved! I thanked them in the previous Blog, and I’ll thank them all again! This win was sweeeeeeet!

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“Now I’ve won the Super Bowl…”

And then Peyton thanked Budweiser, G-d and Papa John…

Here’s the real CHAMPION of Super Bowl 50:
Assistant Coach of the Year Wade Phillips!

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Assistant Coach of the Year Wade Phillips, defensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

And he can take a hit: (RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO SEE VIDEO) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAMJ2zXS19Q 

The Denver Defense won the game! They dominated all season long. The “Orange Rush” was the deciding factor in every game they won, and the secondary was exceptional.  the Orange Crush 2.0 excelled at pressuring the QB, executing pass coverage and making big plays when needed. And all three were key factors in the Broncos victory.

MVP Von Miller

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Von Miller earned the Super Bowl MVP with 2.5 sacks and two forced fumbles on Carolina Panther’s quarterback Cam Newton.

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The Empire State Building in New York City Lit Orange & Blue for the Broncos Win!

Aqib Talib?

Now I’m going to talk about Aqib Talib and his OUT OF CONTROL BEHAVIOR. He should have been ejected (or benched by Denver) in the first quarter! He should have been traded after the eye poke against the Colts in November! He cost the Broncos 35 yards in penalty yards in the first quarter of Super Bowl 50 with two personal fouls, including an INTENTIONAL FACEMASK!

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WTF? Personal Foul 15 yards, Automatic First Down!

Late in the fourth quarter the Indianapolis Colts had pivotal third down, but Talib was hit with an unnecessary roughness penalty for INTENTIONALLY POKING Allen in the eye. He cost the Broncos the game against the Colts and was suspended without pay for the next game against the Kansas City Chiefs for his eye-poke of Colts tight end Dwayne Allen. After the game, Talib didn’t even remember poking Allen. “I don’t even remember, man,” he told USA TODAY “Just mad. I can’t even remember, man. I don’t know.”

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This was an INTENTIONAL FACEMASK! Personal Foul 15 yards, Automatic First Down!

Here are Aqib Talib’s 2015-2016 Stats:

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What the F*ck? Is Aqib Talib’s play so valuable that he should be allowed to cost the team a win and give the Broncos a black eye along with the other team’s player? Do we need a player who commits intentional penalties and deliberately injures other players? If the Broncos had lost, there would have been a lot of questions about his first quarter play!

And what about Cam Newton? What a LOSER! He got beat. He got punished. He was sacked six times and he fumbled in the fourth quarter with four minutes left when Von Miller threw him to the ground. Not only did Newton not go for the loose football, he jumped back after the Broncos’ defenders dove for it.

After his behavior this year and all his trademark celebrations: his dabbing and dancing, his fake jump shots after touchdowns, he completed 18 of 41 passes for 265 yards and ended the game with one interception and two fumbles. He was throwing a tantrum on the sideline and in the end zone during the fourth quarter, showed little respect to the winning opposing team and then acted badly after the game.

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Cam Newton’s New Dab! What a Baby!

Cam Newton only spent five minutes an the post game press conference before bolting. “They just played better than us. I don’t know what you want me to say. I’m sorry. They made more plays than us, and that’s what it came down to. We had opportunities. It wasn’t nothing special that they did. We dropped balls. We turned the ball over. We gave up sacks, threw errant passes. That’s it. They scored more points than us.”  After the constant beating from the Broncos Defense, poor sportsmanship, bad behavior and a bruised ego was all he had left after the game.

 BRONCOS WIN! FIRE PHIL SIMMS!

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Only a few of the Tweets from the AFC Championship Game:

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And only a few from Super Bowl 50:

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Well, it was a VERY GOOD DAY! The Broncos won the Super Bowl! I am very happy.

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Oh Yeah! The Denver Broncos Win Super Bowl 50!

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This just in! Dead & Company headlining at Bonnaroo 2016 in Manchester, Tennessee on June 9th and will hit the road for a summer tour starting June 10th!

Dead & Company Tour Dates 2016
June 10 – Charlotte, NC @ PNC Music Pavilion
June 16 – Cincinnati, OH @ Riverbend Music Center
June 17 – Noblesville, IN @ Klipsch Music Center
June 20 – Camden, NJ @ BB&T Pavilion
June 21 – Saratoga Springs, NY @ Saratoga Performing Arts Center
June 23 – Bristow, VA @ Jiffy Lube Live
June 25 & 26 – Flushing, NY @ Citi Field
June 28 – Hartford, CT @ Xfinity Theatre
July 2 & 3 – Boulder, CO @ Folsom Field
July 7 – Detroit, MI @ DTE Energy Music Theatre
July 9 & 10 – East Troy, WI @ Alpine Valley Music Theatre
July 13 – Pittsburgh, PA @ First Niagara Pavilion
July 15 & 16 – Boston, MA @ Fenway Park

The jam band is also scheduled to appear on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on February 18th.

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Super Bowl 50 at Levi Stadium in Santa Clara, California

SUPERBOWL SUNDAY!!!! GO BRONCOS!!!!

SUPERBOWL SUNDAY!!!! GO BRONCOS!!!!

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Denver Broncos – AFC Champions 2016!

Well, it’s 3:30am on Superbowl Sunday, kickoff is twelve hours away, and I’m so excited I just can’t sleep! GO BRONCOS! My team is in the Superbowl again!

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GO BRONCOS!

(RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WNDOW” TO VIEW LARGER PIC)

I stated it before the season started and there are live breathing witnesses who heard me say loud and proud, and without hesitation, “The Broncos are going to the Superbowl.”

Thank you Peyton Manning! Thank you John Elway!

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GO PEYTON!

Thank you Brock Osweiler! Thank you Brandon McManus and Britton Colquitt!

Thank you C.J. Anderson, Ronnie Hillman, Juwan Thompson, Vernon Davis, Owen Daniels, Virgil Green, Jordan Norwood, Andre Caldwell, Bennie Fowler, Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders! Thank you to the entire offensive line!

Thank you Orange Crush 2016! THE DENVER DEFENSE DOMINATED EVERY GAME!

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New England Patriots QB Tom Brady (12) is hit by the Denver Broncos outside LB Von Miller (58) and called for a late hit penalty after being sacked by Broncos DE Vance Walker (96) during the 2nd half of the Nov. 29, 2015 game in Denver. (AP Photo/Joe Mahoney)

They penalized us, they fined us, they suspended players and the Denver Broncos still made it to the Big Game. Many of the penalties were due to STUPID out of control behavior, and at least one cost us a win. Late hits and personal fouls are just wrong. However, some of the penalties were just bad calls and we’ll never know what really happened with a certain officiating crew in question. Record fines were issued to Denver players and suspensions were ordered (again some for questionable offenses and some were absolutely well deserved) by the NFL, and still the Broncos were triumphant!

Thank you and congratulations Wade Phillips! (Assistant Coach of the Year!)

Thank you Gary Kubiak! Thank you to the entire Coaching Staff, Crew, Employees, Volunteers, Groundskeepers, Security and Office Personnel! Thank you to the Sponsors!

Thank you Denver Broncos Cheerleaders! Best dance team in the NFL! Thank you Sam!

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The Denver Broncos Cheerleaders!

(RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WNDOW” TO VIEW LARGER PIC)

I’ve been a Broncos fan for 40 years and have the pictures to prove it!

I went to the market and I’m ready for the big game, now only eleven hours away.

I told a friend earlier tonight (yesterday) that this time tomorrow (today after the game), I’ll either be very happy or very sad. I’m betting on HAPPY! Enjoy the game!

GO BRONCOS! FIRE PHIL SIMMS!

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GO BRONCOS!

p.s. FIRE PHIL SIMMS! Here are just a few comments from the last few games on CBS:

(RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WNDOW” TO VIEW LARGER PIC)

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READ THE #FIREPHILSIMMS COMMENTS>

READ MORE #FIREPHILSIMMS COMMENTS>

READ MORE #FIREPHILSIMMS COMMENTS>

READ MORE #FIREPHILSIMMS COMMENTS>

(RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WNDOW” TO VIEW LARGER PIC)

FIRE PHIL SIMMS! Thank you @PhilSimmsQuotes & @PeytonMForehead!

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THIS JUST IN! Puppies predict the Denver Broncos will win Super Bowl 50!

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Puppies predict the Denver Broncos will win Super Bowl 50!

My prediction Sun 9:35am pst> Final Score: Broncos 27 – Panthers 17 GO BRONCOS!

“He became a man the day of the greatest game he ever played. Everything he ever knew about common decency and morality he learned that day in December from Alan “The Horse” Ameche; and today in the Superbowl he would earn his wings. The crowd had assembled; a crowd of America’s elite. Toyata salesmen from all around the country — orientals and even those suspected of being orientals — stacked on the thirty yard line watching him sweat and wipe caked blood from his face. The Gallow brothers — Ernest and Julio — party guys who had skinned a few Mexicans and forced them to carry them on their shoulders down to the pre-game tailgate parties at the colosseum. The Pepsi and Coca Cola bottlers of America — Coke adds life; It’s the real thing — bombarded by missiles; flying flaming matchbook covers. The waterheads from General Motors up in the top seats where they belong; getting the worst of the pollution. All sorts of weird motherf*ckers were at the game.”-“Where the Buffalo Roam” Bill Murray as Hunter S. Thompson.

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Bill Murray & Peter Boyle in “Where the Buffalo Roam”

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“Tickets, passes and a key? Must be some sh*t goin’ down somewhere.”

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Remember! Don’t be this guy at the party!

GO BRONCOS!

(RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WNDOW” TO VIEW LARGER PIC)

Happy Chinese New Year 2016!

Gung Hay Fat Choy!

Happy Chinese New Year 2016! Year of the Yang Red Fire Monkey!

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Chinese New Year 2016 (according to the lunar calendar) begins on the New Moon on February 8th. Chinese New Year is celebrated by millions of people all over the world in countries and territories with Chinese populations, including the United States, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mauritius and the Philippines.

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Chinese holidays and events for 2016:
1st January Friday – New Year’s Day National holiday
2nd January Saturday – New Year’s weekend Common Local holidays
3rd January Sunday – New Year’s weekend Common Local holidays
7th January Sunday – Spring Festival Eve National holiday
8th January Monday – Chinese New Year National holiday
9th January Tuesday – Spring Festival Golden Week holiday National holiday
10th February Wednesday – Spring Festival Golden Week holiday Common Local holidays
11th February Thursday – Spring Festival Golden Week holiday Common Local holidays
12th February Friday – Spring Festival Golden Week holiday Common Local holidays
12th February Friday – Spring Festival Golden Week holiday National holiday
13th February Saturday – Spring Festival Golden Week holiday National holiday
13th February Saturday – Spring Festival Golden Week holiday Common Local holidays
22nd February Monday – Lantern Festival Observance
8th March Tuesday – International Women’s Day Observance
10th March Thursday – Zhonghe Festival Observance
12th March Saturday – Arbor Day Observance
20th March Sunday – March equinox Season
4th April Monday – Qing Ming Jie National holiday
1st May Sunday – Labour Day National holiday
4th May Wednesday – Youth Day Observance
1st June Wednesday – Children’s Day Observance
9th June Thursday – Dragon Boat Festival National holiday
20th June Monday – June Solstice Season
1st July Friday – CPC Founding Day Observance
11th July Monday – Maritime Day Observance
1st August Monday – Army Day Observance
9th August Tuesday – Double Seven Festival Observance
17th August Wednesday – Spirit Festival Observance
10th September Saturday – Teachers’ Day Observance
15th September Thursday – Mid-Autumn Festival National holiday
22nd September Thursday – September equinox Season
1st October Saturday – National Day National holiday
2nd October Sunday – National Day Golden Week holiday National holiday
3rd October Monday – National Day Golden Week holiday National holiday
4th October Tuesday – National Day Golden Week holiday Common Local holidays
5th October Wednesday – National Day Golden Week holiday Common Local holidays
6th October Thursday – National Day Golden Week holiday Common Local holidays
7th October Friday – National Day Golden Week holiday Common Local holidays
9th October Sunday – Double Ninth Festival Observance
8th November Tuesday – Journalists’ Day Observance
21st December Wednesday – December Solstice Season
25th December Sunday – Christmas Day Observance

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People walk under a Chinese Lantern display during a Chinese New Year eve celebration at Chinatown in Manila

People under a Chinese Lantern display – Chinese New Year eve celebration Chinatown in Manila Feb 18, 2015 REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco

 

READ THE NEW BLOG> HAPPY CHINESE NEW YEAR 2017! CLICK HERE>
https://joshwilltravel.wordpress.com/2017/01/21/happy-chinese-new-year-2017/

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Throwback Thursday! Freddy’s Dead, the Final Nightmare

Throwback Thursday! Freddy’s Dead, the Final Nightmare

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Yes, those are my feet! That’s me wearing the Freddy Krueger costume and “playing with power!” in “Freddy’s Dead, the Final Nightmare – Nightmare on Elm Street, part 6”.

I graduated from UCSC with a degree in Theatre Arts in June, 1987. I moved to Marin county and lived in Novato before moving back to Los Angeles in 1988. I began my Hollywood career working as a P.A. (Production Assistant) at Highlight Commercials. Their office was on the Hollywood Center Studio lot and the first job I worked for them was the original “Rock the Vote” PSAs shoot on the Chaplin Stage at A&M Studios (you can read about that shoot in a previous blog).

Working freelance production for film, television, video, commercials, theater and live events in Hollywood is real hustle! You have to find the jobs and then you have to do the work while trying to find the next job. I worked film, video and commercial jobs for Highlight, the Oil Factory, O Pictures, The End Productions, Gun-For-Hire, Crystal Sky (Preferred Productions), ITC, AIP, Touring Video, Arnold Shapiro Productions, MPCA (Motion Picture Corporation of America), Concorde-New Horizon Productions, Stargate Films, Alive Enterprises, Nightmare Inc. and many other companies during my production days.

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I got a call one day from a friend I had met on another job. She was working for Patty Whitcher and New Line Cinema and they were hiring a Third Unit for pickup shots because they were behind schedule on “Nightmare on Elm Street, part 6”. They offered me a week of work as a Production Assistant which I happily accepted, and they let me bill them under my company name at the time Pro and Con Productions Entertainment Production.

There were two units night shooting in and around a warehouse stage in Van Nuys/North Hollywood in the San Fernando Valley and they hired me for the small third unit and the pickup shots. It was a big “Low-Budget” shoot and they were working on a lot of the special effects segments with fire, smoke and practical prostethics while I was on set that week. The third unit shots were pretty simple: lighting effects simulating a helicopter over the truck cab, close-ups on hands and specific items, and then insert shots of Freddy playing a video game. Third unit was very small, just the essential crew: director/dp, cameraman & assistant, 2 grip/electricians and me. Since they hadn’t hired a double for Freddy, they sent me to wardrobe, and they dressed me in the Freddy Krueger costume! And this wasn’t the first time I had been called from behind the camera to fill an acting role (I was previously “instant cast” as a Crew Member on “Eternity” and as a double for Chris Lemmon in “Firehead” while working on the crew, as well as performing the role of The Emerson Penguin Team Mascot in “Zapped Again”).

When Third Unit was lighting or wasn’t shooting, I was often called to assist First and Second Unit, so I got to meet some of the cast and crew. If you look at the credits, you might be surprised by the strength of the talent, both in front and behind the camera. It was the first film written and directed by Rachel Talalay (a woman director), written and executive produced by Michael De Luca, and produced by Aron Warner, all of whom went on to bigger things. Aron won a Best Animated Feature Academy Award and a BAFTA Best Feature Film Children’s Award for “Shrek” in 2002. Rachel has 54 IMDB director credits and is currently directing “The Flash”. Michael is the former President of Production for New Line Cinema and Dreamworks with Academy Award nominations for “The Social Network”, “Moneyball” and “Captain Phillips” who recently moved his producer’s deal from Sony to Universal. Patricia Whitcher is the executive producer and unit production manager of “Avengers, Age of Ultron” and currently executive producing “Captain America, Civil War” for Marvel. Check out their IMDB pages for other credits and awards.

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My featured scene, which was shot on set by the Third Unit, features Johnny Depp and Breckin Meyer in addition to Robert Englund as Freddy, and plays out on screen to the tune of the Iron Butterfly’s “Inna-Gadda-Da-Vida”. Weird coincidence, because my father was the Iron Butterfly’s Manager. I had met the guys in Iron Butterfly and grew up with the gold and platinum records for their albums on the wall in my house. Other weird coincidences: Breckin Meyer and I went to the same private high school, and I would later work for Alice Cooper who was shooting a cameo for the film with another actor who would later become my client when I became a talent manager years later. Also, Iggy Pop won a 1992 Razzie Award for Worst Original Song “Why Was I Born (Freddy’s Dead)” and I worked with Iggy on my first “Hollywood” job the first series of “Rock The Vote” PSAs.

I didn’t think very much about doubling for Freddy at the time. Just some insert shots, I thought, not knowing that they would be part of a key scene in the film resulting in the death of a main character. I sat in the chair, put my booted feet up and followed direction. Afterwards, I returned the costume to wardrobe without even taking a polaroid (no cell phones in 1991) for myself and went back to work. It wasn’t until I saw the film later that I realized how lucky I was to be part of the franchise (even though I’m uncredited and totally anonymous in the film). And I don’t even have a P.A. production credit because I was Third Unit (probably paid off the books) and I billed them as my company and not in my own name.

Watch the video clip: (RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW”)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GeJnuP2_yb8

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“Now we’re playin’ with power!”

READ THE BLOG> “Rock the Vote”

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And a very young Johnny Depp (aka Oprah Noodlemantra) as The TV Guy

TAGLINES:

Born November 2nd 1984…Dies September 1991
They saved the best for last.
Evil has finally met its match.
Take him home in a box.
You think you know about dreams…You know nothing!

“One, Two, Freddy’s Coming For You!”

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My Crew T-Shirt from “Freddy’s Dead, The Final Nightmare”