Saturday, January 30, 2016

That New Car Smell

It's a Plymouth, and it has a 1940 California licence plate.  I did a bit of searching, and I think it's a Plymouth Special Deluxe Sedan.  One hell of a car.  A year or so latter, and war time gas rationing would have kept it in the garage.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

The Good Life In California

This is how I imagined things as a kid,  way back east, in coal country, western Pennsylvania.   I thought Californians lounged by the pool when they weren't at the beach, surfing.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Fine Outside Dinning With Puppies

Yes there are puppies in this photo.

Sunday, January 24, 2016


I didn't buy this one for the people.  I bought it because of the background.  Those tanks and that large valve, I think, are from an oil field.  Today, few people realize that Los Angeles was once the largest oil operation in the country.  Wells could be seen all over the area.  From Santa Monica to Beverly Hills to the valleys, oil was pumped out of the ground.

Right now, one of the largest environmental disasters in American history is going on in L.A.  One of those depleted oil fields was converted for use as a natural gas storage facility.  It's leaking.  Since October, tons and tons of methane have been spewing into the atmosphere.  Best case scenario, the leak will be fixed sometime in February.  The worst case scenario, who knows.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Lady Luck

After the photo lab I worked at went out of business, I began doing background work in the movies.  Every so often, I'll get booked to play a casino patron.  The costumers always want the predominantly youngish crowd dressed in stylish and expensive clothes.  I'm not much for Vegas and gambling, but the few times I've been on the strip, I've noticed that the typical casino goer tends towards middle age and above and they dress more polyester than silk.  Hey, it's only a movie.

The Lady Luck opened in 1964 and closed in 2006.  The property was eventually bought, renovated and reopened, in 2013, as The Downtown Grand.  I'm guessing this photo was a lot closer to 1964 than not.

Saturday, January 16, 2016


Are they sharing that beer?  I hope so.  If not, she has a hell of a capacity for alcohol.  These are real photo postcards, and I'm guessing they're from Germany.  

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Hollywood At War

These two photos are each stamped, "MAY 13, 1943."

Most people, when they think of Hollywood and war,  think of war movies.  The war actually made and destroyed the careers of many actors.  George Reeve of Superman fame was an up and coming actor who spent several years in the marines, returned to Hollywood only to find his career stalled.  John Wayne was a minor star who had made a few good movies, most notably Stagecoach.  Too old for the draft, bad knees from college football injuries, rejected by the O.S.S., he became a major star almost by default.  And then there was Dwight Frye, Renfield in Dracula, suffering from a heart condition, unable to serve, he ended up working two jobs.  Actor by day, draftsman at a defense plant by night.  He ended up dying of a heart attack from over work.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

In Uniform

I need help on this one.  Does anyone know what country this guy is from?

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Little Green Men


Walker Air Force Base started out as the Roswell Army Flying School on September 20 1941.  Good timing or good planning?  It was pretty obvious that the United States would be drawn into the war, and the Roosevelt administration had already begun planning for the conflict.  A peace time draft, civil defense planning, weapons development, and, of course, the opening of bases and training facilities.  In '42, there was a bit of a status upgrade as the flying school became Roswell Army Air Field.  In 1947, after the war, and with the creation of a separate Air Force, it became Roswell Air Force Base, and the following year, it was renamed in honor of   General Kenneth Newton Walker who had  died in a bombing raid over Rabaul, New Britain, Papua New Guinea.  In 1967, Walker Air Force Base was closed.  The Vietnam War was pulling too much money from the defense department budget, and things had to be cut.

Of course, the base's greatest claim to fame was a crashed weather balloon.  For reasons no one has ever really understood, people became convinced that the balloon was actually a crashed UFO.  For the record, I do believe that there is intelligent life on other planets.  The real question is, have they visited earth.  Let's just say that extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof, and I have yet to see that proof.  I'd love to be proved wrong, but until then, I'm going with weather balloon.

Now, why no uniforms?  Perhaps they're scientists doing the alien autopsy.  I saw it on Fox!

Friday, January 8, 2016

Star Wars In the Teens

I'm old enough to have seen the original Star Wars when it first came out.   For the record, I thought it a fun, but somewhat inconsequential movie.  I also thought Princess Leia's hairdo the stupidest thing I'd ever seen on an actress.  Anyway, after the photo lab I worked in went out of business, I turned to background work in the movies.  It was either that, or live in my car.   Funny thing is, for years I would joke that I was the only person in Los Angeles that didn't want to be in the movies, and now look at me.  Even though I barely survive, I love what I do.  And, as a member of SAG-AFTRA, I get to see free movies during award season.  So, go see the new Star Wars movie if you must, but please also see The Revenant, I Smile Back, The Big Short, Straight Outta Compton, Carol, Spotlight, as well as non nominees Mad Max; Fury Road and The Martian.  Please, it's your duty to stop The Force!

Which Woman is the Nanny?

I'll bet, that even when this picture was taken, men were sleeping with the nanny.  Of course, that doesn't mean that this man was sleeping with the nanny.  No date, but probably from the early twentieth century.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

A Tourist

She looks rather stern.  And no, I don't know  she's a tourist,, it's just a gut feeling.