Tag Archive: Santa Monica

Occupy Art

(Submitted by friend of the blog, Brian Hart)

I went to an art opening being held in Santa Monica, California’s Bergamot Station.  One of the many galleries there had an exhibit called Just Occupy, which featured 3 artists’ representation of last year’s Occupy Los Angeles movement.  One of the artists was Ted Soqui, who had photographed a lot of the participants.

One picture in the exhibit that particularly struck me as amusing, was that of a man in a Guy Fawkes mask, relaxing on the sidewalk.  Since my friend, Paula, had attended Occupy Los Angeles, I thought about her, took a picture with my phone, and then e-mailed it immediately to her.

Image seen in gallery. Photo by Ted Soqui

When I checked my mail several hours later, I heard back from Paula.  She told me that not only was she there that night, but she had seen the photographer take that very picture with his high-end camera and had photographed the subject herself, seconds later!

Image from demonstration. Photo by Paula Lauterbach

Occupy this, OddsMakers!

[EDITOR: In this day and age of copyright infringement concerns, can Paula be sued for taking virtually the same photo within moments of original? I’ve seen crazier lawsuits lately…]


(Submitted by friend of the blog, Brian Hart)

I was listening to George Hrab’s Podcast (episode #240) on my iPod while heading out to one of my familiar lunch spots in Santa Monica, CA.  In this episode, George did a bit called “The History Chunk”, where he tells what happened on this particular date in history, usually in chronological order, and then makes some kind of joke about it. He mentions how in 1982, boxer Duk Koo Kim died after a bout with Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini.

Thirty seconds later I see Ray Mancini having lunch in the very restaurant I was walking into.  I clandestinely snap his picture.

Ray "Boom Boom" Mancini

You could have knocked me over with a boxing glove!

[EDITOR: You’re lucky Ray didn’t knock you over bareknuckled for taking clandestine photos of him while he’s trying to have a nice meal. Watch your back…]

Coincidence, Italian Style

(Submitted by reader Steve Gray)

A woman friend and I were visiting Naples, Italy. She was on the faculty at UCLA and I live in Santa Monica. She wanted to visit the Naples La Scala Opera house and hear an opera. I wasn’t really interested so we agreed to attend only the first act. We left at intermission and began our walk down the street.

Suddenly a female voice yelled, “Sylvia!” It was someone she knew from UCLA. (Remember, this is halfway around the world and the meeting was completely coincidental.)

The woman who called out was with her husband and they were walking toward the opera house. They were hoping to catch the second act of the opera. (Why they were going to only the second act, I don’t know.) We gave them our ticket stubs and went on our way, with everyone’s plans lining up as hoped.

[EDITOR: I sometimes like to do the above-mentioned trick with movies. Maybe that’s the reason I’m the only person I know who thought Mulholland Drive made perfect sense.]

(Submitted by reader Anna B)

Yesterday evening while working as a dispatcher at Santa Monica PD we impounded a car with plates SMBMW31.  It was registered to Santa Monica BMW, as would seem obvious.  I took the 31 to mean it was the 31st in their fleet.  I had not run any of their vehicles before, as I was unfamiliar with their using that method of ID for their vehicles.  It’s so obvious that if I had run them before, I believe I would remember it.  Today, at the beginning of my day, as I walked to my car I noticed a grey BMW parked almost at my bumper with license SMBMW35.  I found the coincidence intriguing.  What are the odds?

So here’s the story.  Around the turn of the century, my great grandfather, Oscar Adams homesteaded a ranch in Northern New Mexico, about 24 miles north of Las Vegas, NM. His daughter Nina, and husband, Charlie Middleton ran it as a guest ranch (Evergreen Valley Ranch) for about 50 years, until about 20 years ago, when my great uncle Charlie sold it to a group of families, shortly before he passed away. Even though the ranch is no longer in the family, my mother has kept in close contact with those now in ownership, and we visit regularly.

This August, my mother and I visited the ranch, and while there, met the great granddaughter of the man who homesteaded the ranch next door to Evergreen Valley Ranch – Terrill Ranch; the ranch through whose meadow we have crossed for over 40 years, to go on our favorite hikes in the area. I was amazed to discover that she (Alex) works with me at RAND, in our Santa Monica office. We had never met, but work with some of the same people. More amazing still is the fact that we were both visiting our respective ranches the same week, and had opportunity to meet each other! Her fiance, Michael who also works at RAND was with her, in NM.

Less than a week after this amazingly coincidental meeting, my boyfriend Paul and I were at the Hollywood Bowl to hear Shostakovich’s 5th Symphony; one of two concerts we got tickets for this season.  As we were eating, he looked up, and lo and behold, who was passing in front of us, but Alex & Michael.  Of all the people there and all the timing of looking up, the odds must be crazy that we would run into them there; on a Tuesday night – with Shostakovich!!  The other tidbit, I discovered when I ran into Alex the next day at work (really, how many times have we unknowingly crossed paths??) – that her fiance is a violinist, and Paul is a cellist.  🙂  So there you have it. The Odds Must Be Crazy!