2014 Jul 27 | Glow-in-the-dark VB, apartment searching

Tree trimming on the road.


I don't know what a giraffe has to do with a deli, but it's an eye-catching sign.

This homeless person has a ton of stuff and a couch to hang out on during the day. Pretty good life if you're homeless.

I love the roads with tall palm trees on each side.

Ick, who'd want to live on that street?

A fun paint job.

No right turn at night? That's weird. I heard it was to prevent prostitution or something.

I like the name of the business.

This chicken place has lots of birds, including a pheasant.

I hadn't done glow-in-the-dark volleyball for a few years, so I decided to host it again.

First stop was Cha Cha Chicken for dinner.

The off to the courts. We went to the lighted ones south of the pier instead of the farther north and darker ones.

Hanging out by the side.

A group photo, although a few people left earlier.

We switched to a beach ball to make it easier when it got darker.

Ogii hitting it.

It was hard to get the focus and lighting right. At least the amusement park in the back is clear.

Kat diving for the ball.

David hitting it.

And Ogii.

A flash doesn't look as cool but at least everything is clear.

Break time.

The beach ball was really hard to control.

So you had to hit it pretty hard.


An Ariel Atom, pretty unique.

Aw, this person took up two parking spots.


Looking for apartments, we were in the Hancock Park area and put in the wrong address. I don't think this is in our price range. But there are a ton of huge, beautiful houses like this a few blocks north of where we were looking.

More nice houses.

And another one.

Unfortunately, in our price range, this is the kind of thing we saw. The occupants before us had children; who lets a house get this dirty with kids? Did they never clean? I could see a bachelor doing this, but this is disgusting for a family.

At least it has an open kitchen area.

Yummy lunch.

My favorite watch repair store, hidden behind this practically-unmarked door and surrounded by empty suites. First time I tried to find it I looked for 15 minutes and still couldn't find it, even though I worked 5 feet away from the outside door.

Down an empty hallway.

Run by a old couple who have tons of movie star signatures all over their walls.

It looks like there are only three businesses in the entire building.

Eating at my favorite place. I love the bread.

And the plantains.

The guy in front didn't get any of the best items; silly guy.

The SR-71 Blackbird by the museums.

There are charging stations here.

Although I think you have to pay for them.

The "manly" rough totes are on the left.

A cool plant piece.

Looking for a new apartment together. Things we're looking for: more space, 2 parking places, central A/C, laundry, nearby parking for guests. Optionally nice: hardwood floors, a balcony, nice views, good neighborhood.

This place was pretty nice: hardwood floors, large living room.

A decent view of downtown.

A balcony.

It didn't have central A/C, but if you opened some windows, you got a nice breeze. However, there was almost no parking for guests around here and there was no laundry.

This was weird. We made an appointment to look at a place, but when we got there, someone across the street was waiting for us. So we went and looked at it, thinking we had the address wrong. However, when we checked later, we did have the correct address. Weird. But, it had a huge living room.

And a huge kitchen.

It's own washer and dryer.

And three bedrooms.

Although no central A/C, only window units, and the living room and kitchen were really hot.

Beautiful views of downtown to one side and the Hollywood sign to the other.

A little area out front. I loved the place; it had a very "artists living together" vibe, but it was a bit expensive. We could possibly rent out a room, but that might be more of a pain that it would be worth. Also there was no guest parking anywhere around there and it was a bit of a pain for us to drive to work; the roads were really busy and cramped. Not to mention how hot the living room was. It reminded me of San Francisco, with the freedom it offered, but that alone wasn't enough.

This place had really nice floors, although they were a bit bouncy.

Very nice tile in the bathroom.

And very nice cabinets in the kitchen. However, it was a bit small, no A/C, no laundry, and no guest parking. However, it shows how having pretty fixtures can really improve a place.

This was one of my favorite places. It was in a poorer neighborhood, but it was very close to both of our offices. Also, it was huge; two floors and with a big balcony up on top.

However, the owner kept refusing to meet with us. Partly because he said it wasn't done, which I said I didn't care about, and partially because he said two of us weren't enough people. I guess he wanted a family. He finally let us come and look at it, but by then he had rented it out to someone else and only had the back unit available, which didn't have the balcony or a view. Plus, no central A/C, and Ogii was a bit worried about the location, so we passed. I would have really liked the front unit, though.

When we arrived for this place, the guy said the repair man had the key and he couldn't show us the apartment, even though we had an appointment. Ogii said we should try to look at it on our own, and when we went back there, the repair guy was there, so we just told him the manager said we should come and look at it. It wasn't that great, though.

This place also had a nice balcony...

... that looked out onto this courtyard. It was a very dirty place overall, including all of the apartments around it.

This manager was very nice, and the apartment was really good, too.

It had a balcony with a view of the Hollywood sign. However, it was a really quiet complex, so she seemed a bit worried when we mentioned hosting parties, and there was no guest parking around.

Another of my favorite places. This was downtown in the flower district, so every time you came home, it'd smell of fresh flowers. Plus, it was absolutely huge. I thought we could turn the front room into an art showroom, use it as a business, and write off part of the rent.

It was really funky, though. The toilet was alone in this tiny room, with the sink outside.

The shower was huge; you could fit 10 people in it.

Another huge room to put whatever we wanted in, along with a second bathroom to the side.

However, this was Ogii's reaction. She thought it smelled old...

... and didn't like the stairs going up to it. I loved it; even though it was a bit more expensive, I thought it was a great investment considering we could turn part of it into a business. She refused to budge, though. The only other big downside was it didn't have central A/C, and it was pretty warm in the afternoon. It had windows on both sides, though, so I think some fans would get a good cross breeze going, and we could use window or portable A/C units, but she refused. This was the most excited I got about any place we looked at, only to have my dreams crushed by Ogii.

I went here to get an application for the place, just in case Ogii changed her mind.

Hey, this was one of the first places I went when I moved to LA!

Up this freight elevator to a break-stuff party. Ah, good memories. Would have been a good omen for the apartment, but Ogii still didn't like it.

We also had to sift through a lot of fake ads like this one, where the offer was too good to be true. You're not getting a 3BR for $1000 anywhere near LA, especially one that looks like that.

Someone likes dogs.

I'm offering a queen exchange.

Big mistake by him.

I can just take his queen.

Free pawn, and setting up an attack.

I got lucky my knight was defending d1 from a back row mate by his queen; otherwise I'd have to push a pawn out front and waste a tempo. As it is, I don't think there's any way for him to avoid checkmate with Qg7 without a massive piece loss.

Dumb mistake by me. I should have taken his queen with my queen first, then promoted. By promoting first, he can just take my new queen for free with his queen.

Pinning his rook to his king, not that he had much of a chance at this point.

I'll just go attack his pawns...

... and forget that my queen was protecting my rook, preventing checkmate. Even if I take back with my knight, his rook then takes that. Oops.

Classic king-queen fork with a knight. You'd think by now I'd be faster to see this, but I guess not. I have to recognize this pattern faster.

I can just take his rook with my bishop. Hopefully I do that next move.

Nope, I exchange knights.

And then I castle. Arg, wasted opportunity.

A dancer at Samba Brazilian Restaurant.