Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Allegiance The Musical

I received an email from my aunt Rose a couple of months ago, about a musical named “Allegiance” premiering at the Old Globe Theater in San Diego. My cousin Erica’s high school and Stanford classmate Jay Kuo is the writer/composer of this musical, so my aunt Rose wanted to make sure I knew about it.

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{Photo taken from the Allegiance Facebook page. We were not allowed to take photos during the show.}

Todd and I got tickets for a Thursday night showing on 10/18. Todd is a fan of George Takei on Facebook and he had talked about being a part of this musical in San Diego. The musical is about the Japanese-American internment during WW II, which wasn’t talked about extensively in history books in school. It was a dark period of our American history. As a child, George Takei’s family was sent to internment camps in Arkansas and California, so this musical is very personal to him. 

We went to the musical not having many expectations, except that my friend Anne had seen it and loved it. We had no idea that the cast consisted of such talent as Lea Salonga (Tony Award winner for “Miss Saigon”)and Telly Leung of numerous Broadway musicals (and also a Warbler on “Glee”). The singing was so so good, and they each gave such a strong performance with amazing stage presence. The live orchestra was also fantastic. Towards the end of the show, I was moved to tears, as were many in the audience judging by the amount of sniffling I heard! I was engrossed in the story, the music, the singing, the costumes… all of it!

The show concluded its run at the Old Globe Theater this past Sunday.  It broke the Old Globe Theater’s box office record and became the highest grossing show there in its 77 year history
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{Photo taken from the Allegiance Facebook page.}

This show will most likely be Broadway-bound in 2013. If you get a chance to see it, you should! It is well worthwhile.

Lastly, a few night time shots of the outside views at the Old Globe. We only had our small camera with us so the pictures aren’t the best quality. But it was a beautiful night full of beautiful music and stories.
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More links about Allegiance:

George Takei Takes Story Of Internment To The Stage

Q-and-A: Catching up with George Takei

An ‘Allegiance’ actor’s story: Chasing the dream

Play review: 'Allegiance' an affecting success

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Helmet Cam

Todd used to play in a band with his parents. He started playing keyboards with them and arranging their music when he was 14 years old. They played a lot of weddings, bar mitzvahs, and even debutante balls. These days his parents play once or twice a year and Todd still helps them with the music arrangements and printed parts. Todd’s dad is a physician in Akron, Ohio, and last weekend the band played in the charity concert “Docs Who Rock”. This is an annual charity event that they play at every year, and every year Todd helps them arrange the music for it. They used to pay him, but nowadays he seemed to have a barter arrangement with them. So this year, for arranging the music for Docs Who Rock, Todd’s parents bought him the GoPro Hero2 HD camera.

Otherwise known as “Helmet Cam” in our house.
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Todd wanted the camera so he could take photos while on his bike ride without risking a fall. The camera can take photos or videos. You can even set the camera to take photos at certain intervals, like every 30 seconds.

So he strapped the camera to his bike helmet on Sunday 10/14 and tried it out on his coastal bike ride.
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The colors of the photos can be inconsistent. And sometimes there’s a fisheye quality to them.
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But without any effort, pictures like this on his rides by the ocean are now possible.
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Sometimes fingers are even included.
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I have a feeling that we’ll be getting many more pictures with the helmet cam in the future. The camera comes with underwater casing as well. Maybe a session on a surfboard is in order.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Cropping at Paper Tales

I found out on Instagram that a couple of my scrapbooking friends were going to Paper Tales to crop on Saturday 10/13, so I signed up too. Paper Tales has just expanded their store into the space next door, after the coffee shop closed. So I was excited to see their new space!

I met Gina and Kristen at the Amy Tan class at Paper Tales in May. Since then I’ve been to two crops at Ever After with Kristen, but this was the first time meeting up with Gina to crop.
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I love our lovely scrapbooking mess! :)

I brought along my October Studio Calico kit, Roller Rink, along with the add-on kit Crack The Whip. I worked on a layout about my cat Noodle. I stamped and misted first on the background, then laid my papers and photo out.
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I used the camera stamp on patterned paper, then put a blue enamel dot in the middle where the “lens” of the camera is.
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I started a second layout, but I didn’t have time to finish it there.
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Kelly came and joined us later. I met her through the crops at Ever After.
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And a photo of all four of us. You can also see what this side of the store looks like now that they’ve taken over the coffee shop space.
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I didn’t have the Thickers alphas that I wanted to use with me, so I finished the title for my layout when I came home.
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I got the “Talk to the Paw” flair from Evalicious.  I just love it!
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Closer look at the journaling.
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As usual, I had a lot of fun scrapbooking with my new scrapbook friends. I did buy some new papers that I liked while I was there. Paper Tales has some of the latest and greatest there if you are looking for a LSS in San Diego. :)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

San Diego Gaslamp Quarter Photo Tour

A few months ago, we bought a Groupon for a 2 hour photo tour of the Gaslamp Quarter in downtown San Diego with Snap Photo Tours. We finally went on the tour on Sunday 10/7.

But first, we went to breakfast at Crest Café in Hillcrest. I decided to try something new! I got Crème Brulee French Toast. It was every bit as good as it looked, but too big so I couldn’t finish.
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Todd got Macadamia Banana Belgian Waffle and he ate it all.
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At 10am, we met up with our tour guide, Aggy, in front of Horton Plaza. She was nice and knowledgeable and fun. We started out taking photos around Horton Plaza and then walked and talked and took photos. I love tours like this because you learn a bit about the places you’re walking by, as well as get photo tips! Todd was armed with our Canon T2i DSLR, while I took the little Canon SD850IS point and shoot. The photos below are a mix of both.

A statue of the founder of downtown San Diego, Alonzo Horton.
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Statue of former senator Pete Wilson.
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US Grant Hotel. It was once the most luxurious hotel in San Diego.
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We practiced macro photography with flowers.
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Then we walked around the Gaslamp and took photos of interesting buildings.
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Aggy told us about building histories and architecture.
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I took photos where I thought the angles and lighting were interesting.
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Aggy said that repetition of structures make a good photo.
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Street views are cool as well.
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Photo of the Wyatt Earps Historic Saloon.
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The Keating building from below.
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Keating building street view.
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Reading Cinemas.
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Ghirardelli Chocolate!
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Yuma Building.
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The Hostel, with cool wall painted on the side.
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Some plants growing out of the side of the building.
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Tables and seats outside a pub.
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The Horton Grand Hotel, which some have said is haunted.
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I wish this photo that Aggy took of us wasn’t blurry. It would otherwise be cute!
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Then we went into the historic Chinese district. This was a door into a produce market.
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San Diego Chinese Historical Museum.
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Cool buildings close to the Convention Center.
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The fountains across from the convention center.
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Aggy took this fun photo of us.
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I took one of Todd and Aggy.
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A historic Gaslamp Quarter photo tour is definitely fun and something to do if you ever come visit San Diego!
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After the tour, we went to have lunch at Café Sevilla, our favorite tapas restaurant.

Andalusia Tomato Sauce & French Country Baguette
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Tuna Tartare Tower:  Sushi-grade Ahi, avocado, apple, mango, soy dressing

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Meatballs al Jerez
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Three Tapas Platter with Grilled Sausages, Brava Potatoes, Shrimp al Ajillo. These were the Brava Potatoes.
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The Shrimp al Ajillo.
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Grilled sausages.
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It was more food than we could eat. But Spanish tapas are very tasty!

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Big chandelier inside Café Sevilla.
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We had a lot of fun with the Gaslamp photo tour.  Hope you enjoyed it too! :)

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