2020 Feb 22 | House of Delegates in LA

My windsheild is all frozen over. And since it's a rental, I don't have my ice scraper.

This is one use for these metal credit cards other than getting stuck in card readers at parking lots.

The rear window is iced over as well, but this car has a back-up camera, so I can use that instead.

Let's leave the heater at 82 while I go eat breakfast; hopefully that will clear off the rest of the ice.

Sac's Thrift Avenue, great name.

I haven't eaten at Dairy Queen in forever. And these even have the cupcake iceream things with chocolate chunks; I love those.

Goodbye, weed-filled Oregon.

The exit row was empty. This guy moved into an exit row seat. The flight attendant came and told him he couldn't do that because (1) it's an upgrade and he didn't pay for it and (2) he didn't go over the extra safety information at the beginning of the flight for exit rows. The guy kept arguing, even yelling, which was really annoying because everyone was trying to sleep and he woke everyone up. Finally he moved. After a few minutes, he went back in and stayed there. What a selfish jerk.

A thin bridge of traffic leads into the city.

Downtown LA.

Which is a small cluster of skyscrapers.

That's a huge stadium. I wonder which it is? I figure it's The Forum based on our approximate location.

Good figuring.

The worst thing about these small planes is how my feet are always freezing on them.

Hotel shuttle area.

Valet parking is $49 per day. The flight itself is almost cheaper than that.

Cool entrance to the Renaissance Hotel.

Lounge area.

Sports bar area.

A touchscree table.

Ooh, it has jigsaw puzzles.

Got it.

Ironing my shirts. One reason I prefer driving to flying is that I don't have to do this.

My room has a nice view of LAX.

Although the window is rather dirty.

And I can't open it to clean it.

Flightaware shows when different airplanes land.

Right on time.

$7 for water? I'll drink tap.

A bear wandering around homes in LA.

Cool painting.

I don't think I'm a club level guest, but I was able to get in.

Nice open room.

With breakfast.

And more on this side.

Also a view of the airport.

It says rooftop swimming pool, but it's on floor 2 of 11.

I guess that's kind of roof-top. It is the roof of something.


With a lecture on the Maculogix AdaptDx Pro for diagnosing AMD.

Everyone getting ready to walk in with their society flags.

Nice neat line.

Here I come.


More flags.

Our group with our flag.

Lots of ads.

Pledge of Allegiance.

Optometric Oath.

Current President's observation.

Hilary introducing the AOA-PAC donation meter.

She started it off.

Our dues-paying members have gone down slightly.

Revenue is mostly from dues and events.

Spending is mostly on governmental issues.

The big marketing campaign they've been running.

Some donations.

By COA partners.

Ideas on how to attract more members.

Because dues are down but expenses are up.

They've had some major strategic plans over the past.

And many ideas they've tried.

Although none seem to work.

Dr. Theaker is on the Legislation-Regulation Committee.

Discussing some of the new laws.

Discussing one of the proposed resolutions.

Editing it.

Discussing it.

Discussing it some more.

Everyone listening.

Last call for new resolutions.

More ads and bribes in the form of snacks.

Onto awards.

Optometrist of the Year requirements.

Past ones.

The new one.

Dr. Rosten.

Lunch time.

A huddle on membership.

Where our money goes.

Only private-practice owners are mostly members; all other categories have more non-members.

As new optometrists continue to practice over 15 years, they tend to become non-members, at least partly due to dues becoming more expensive.

Discussion with ideas on how to fix it. The AOA spokespeople said personal connections were the best way to grow membership.

California has the second-worst membership percentage in the US.

Reference Committee meetings where they went over the bylaws amendments and policy resolutions in more detail.

Young OD meeting.

Drinking while foosballing.

Playing pool.

I chatted with a few students who might be coming up here to practice after they graduate.


Another option.


Nice area for cocktails.

The bartender mixing drinks.

Ogii's collection of snacks I had hidden at home for her for the past week.

That sounds like a fun CE.

Reference committee reports.

A discussion on private equity.

Lots of companies are getting into it.

It has benefits...

... and drawbacks.

Different ways to value a practice result in different valuations, and even small cash-flow differences can have large offer differences.

An update from the AOA.

Dr. Theaker is active at the national level as well.

Fighting against all of the online vision startups.

Some of them have a ton of money, which makes it more difficult.

Especially because as the numbers of optometrists has slowly climbed, the percentage of dues-paying members has slowly declined.

A report from the California State Board of Optometry.

Candidates who are running for board of trustees.

Dr. Theaker speaking.

Voting ballot.

Everyone discussing how to vote.

More over here.

The results were so close, we had to have a run-off.

And then they were too close again. But the new president just said he'd select whoever got the most votes.

Passing the gavel.

New president's address.

A ceremony for the outgoing president.

With some fun clothes.

He had a few patents.

Swearing in the new officers.

We crushed the AOA PAC goal.

Everyone running out to either catch a shuttle back to the airport or to get their car from the valet.

A huge line of Uber and Lyft drivers outside the airport.

A plane taking off into the sun.

It was pretty foggy and we had a rough landing, but we made it.

The University of Houston is starting a medical school.

Maybe I should go back to school and become an MD? The first class gets some great scholarships.