2020 May 10 | bioluminescent waves at Venice Beach

Margaritas for Cinco de Mayo.

I made the drinks, Ogii got the food.

They won't serve you at the drive through without a mask. Although I wonder how strongly they enforce that.

This hair salon has lots of positive signs.

Rose in front of our house.

A little bird outside of Ogii's work.

The stores still don't have Quilted Northern, but they do have Cottonelle.

Still out on Amazon, too.

We both prefer Quilted Northern, though.

A giant strawberry.

Ogii said she has a bigger head than me while we were in the kitchen. Well, we have a measuring device right here; let's see.


I had a Zoom meeting with other local society presidents in California.

We had 20 of them, which is most, and a good discussion.

Ogii makes great schnitzel.

The plants are really growing.

BIOS update.

This is always terrifying because if it messes up, your computer can be ruined.

A great book on pirates. Most well-researched historical novels tend to be incredibly dry. Most interesting historical novels tend to be rather poorly researched. This book is a rare combination, being both highly entertaining and thoroughly fact-checked. Particularly amusing is how the author often provides the romanticized folk story first, then immediately corrects the historical inaccuracies. He is also quick to point out when he/we simply don't know what happened due to a lack of evidence, a welcome change from authors shoehorning their own guesses into their timelines. In addition, none of the characters are wonderful or evil; they're a realistic mix of both good and bad, just as people truly are.

There was a voiceover explaining what was going on for visually impaired people during a movie we were watching. It was annoying, but we couldn't figure out how to turn it off.

I woke up and I was being pushed off the bed. Ogii sleeps on the left, but she wormed her way all the way over to my side.

We had to drive Ogii's boss down to UCLA on the weekend, which is great timing, because there are bioluminescent algae in the water which makes the waves glow. They're at mostly south bay beaches; the farthest north is Venice. They've already been there for over a week and normally they would be gone by now, but they're still there. I've never seen it in California, even though it shows up approximately every other year for a week or so, so hopefully it's still there when we get there.

So we looked for places to stay on the beach in Venice.

The Venice Breeze Hotel has a rooftop balcony we can use to watch from above.

And it has a nice view through these palm trees.

A nice view down the Venice boardwalk as well.

And some nice rooms that aren't too expensive.

It's really hard to find anywhere you can fly a drone on the coast in California. It's almost all prohibited. But in LA, there is a small area around the Venice pier it's allowed. However, there's a first responder emergency going on there right now, and even though I'm trying to schedule the permission for tomorrow, it still won't allow it.

So I had to wait until whatever emergency was over, then I could get it. You used to have to go through the FAA website for all of these authorizations, which could take up to three months, but there is a new system called the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC) which gives almost instant authorization. Not all of the airports have it, but the ones around LA do.

Driving in Pebble Beach and there are all these people running on the road.

Ogii's boss had some recent landscaping done and it looks great. He also had a private tennis court set up.

The Prius has rainbow sparkles in some area.

We've been driving by this supermarket for a long time, watching it get built. It's finally open.

Lots of poppies in the hills on the drive down to LA.

An accident at the intersection.

Thankfully it looks like nobody should have been too badly injured.

More poppies.

A fire on the side of the highway.

Lots of firefighters up there. They look like ants from here.

It looks like contained now.

A huge line of cars backed up from it.

All Santa Monica beaches and parking lots are closed.

A mural of POWs and MIAs in Southeast Asia.

A mural of Kobe Bryant.

A house with some crazy decorations and sculptures.

You can see the red algae out in the ocean, so it should glow tonight.

The room has an amazing view of the boardwalk. Ogii sat and people-watched for a few hours.

While I watched the UFC fights.

A view through one window of the palm trees in front.

With a hippy drum circle below.

The pier.

He fits the stereotype perfectly.

I prefer the grappling to the boxing.

After the fight, he's getting ready to take a selfie, and his cornermen are wearing masks. Definitely 2020.

Waterson had an amazing fight last time, but this one was boring.

Two old wrestlers.

Everyone thought Werdume would destroy Oleinik at grappling, but Oleinik kept punching him and got out of his holds.

Oleinik laid on his back between rounds instead of sitting on the stool. I've never seen that before.

Now some grappling.

But Oleinik reversed it.

Trying again.

And again, but Oleinik held out and won a decision. I really like both of them.

The hotel was an old building with few outlets. Easy fix.

An Instagram couple, taking selfies and reviewing them over and over.

This is definitely Venice; some weird people.

The hippy drum circle is getting bigger. They're not social distancing, either.

A bunch of cops on four wheelers out on the beach. Maybe they should come break up the drum circle.

In fact, most people weren't wearing masks, although some were. It was weird because up here you're required to wear a mask outside.

Everyone likes petting dogs, but not a good idea with the virus.

A photographer with a big lens.

Ogii out on the fire escape seeing what he's seeing.

Looking down the boardwalk.

A bird overhead.

The drum circle has even more people now.

The hotel is the big red building on the left.

A nice mural with some homeless people sleeping in front of it.

A little pizza place right there so we don't have to go too far.


The sun is going down.

A video of the drum circle throughout the day.

The drummers at sunset.

Out at the beach.

Looking back.

There seemed to be more bioluminescence farther south, but the traffic was really bad.

We don't want to be stuck in traffic for hours.

So I'm glad we got a hotel right on the beach where we can see it from the rooftop balcony.

And then walk right out onto the beach. People were social distancing pretty well.

A video of the waves.

A lot of homeless tents.

An optical store right on Venice. That must be expensive rent.

This house has a lot of large windows.

Large vehicles aren't allowed to prevent people from basically living out of camper vans here.

I wonder if this one is smaller than the restrictions or is just ignoring them.

We got up very early the next morning at 3am to go check out the poppies at sunrise. Even though we loved the location of the hotel for people watching, the other people staying there were really loud and partying late into the night. Something to consider if you buy a house in a popular area. We thought about staying closer to Venice and seeing more colored waves, but we had heard the poppies looked good, so we decided to go to Lancaster. Even though the park itself is closed, you can park on the side of the road in most places and walk out.

I ended up not using the drone in Venice because there were too many people around, so I tried to use it here. First we had to wait for a dumb update, though, and then there weren't really large spots of flowers that looked good.

Ogii got to show Mom the poppies for Mother's Day, though.

The view from Ogii's phone.

There were patches of these white flowers near the road as well.

Ogii with them.

Close up.

And large patches of poppies on the drive back up.

This truck's brakes were really smoking.

Time for a checkup.

Stopping by Flora's farm to fill up on fruit for the week.

She was making Mother's Day bouquets.

We also picked up some fresh-baked bread with raisins and walnuts.

Neat clouds.

The house tends to be rather cold, even if it's warm outside, unless you open the windows, so Ogii wrapped a blanket around herself.

These are cool shoes.

Elon Musk and his wife Grimes had a son.

And gave him a really weird name.

It can't be the legal name in California. I wonder which state they had him in and what his legal name is.

We just got glasses for adults covered by Medi-Cal after many years of not having it, and now it's likely to be cut again.

The pricing on the first book is $45. You'd have to want this book really badly to pay $935 for it.

A single ruler is $2; a 4-pack is $40. Who is pricing this stuff?

I hate that when I search for a 12x26x1 air filter, other sizes also show up. I don't want other sizes. If I did, I would have searched for those.

Also, when I searched for this size of range hood filter in Amazon, none of the right size come up. But if I search Google, the first result is this Amazon page with the correct size. Amazon's search is horrible.

DJI just announced a new drone, the Mavic Air 2, with a larger resolution. The Mavic 2 Pro has a 1" sensor with 20MP; the Mavic Air 2 has as 1/2" sensor with 48MP. I wonder which would take better pictures.

But they're also expecting a Mavic 3, which might have a better sensor and larger resolution. Not that I use the drone hardly at all.

My Fico score is the highest it's ever been.