When I was a columnist for the L.A. Times, one of my most-popular features was a column called “Random Thoughts.” Cynics might note that all my thoughts are random. Which is true. In any case, here are a few random observations on October, which flies by quicker than that Dodger goose:
–Best Sunday sound: the murmur of children in church.
–At our house, we don’t celebrate Halloween. We eat it.
–So, which is it: Taffy apple, candy apple or caramel?
–FYI, it’s apple-picking season in rustic Yucaipa, about 90 minutes east.
–While out there, don’t miss the Oak Glen Preserve, a hiker’s paradise.
–Best smell of fall: when a candle singes the side of a pumpkin.
–Best October surprise: rain on the roof.
–BTW, I really hate autoconnect.
–If martinis and red meat are so bad, how come steakhouses are so full of old people?
–“Stopped by the gas station. Choices are regular, plus and Dom Perignon.” (Sam Farmer)
–I really miss troubadours. And I wouldn’t mind the occasional chanteuse.
–Science question: Are tacos a solid or a gas?
–Pandora radio find-of-the-week: Lindsey Brier
–“I believe that if you want to see America clearly, don’t read a paper, go to a state fair.” (Garrison Keillor)
–It’s not really fall till you can see the referee’s breath on TV.
–It’s not really winter till there’s a snow game.
–Beatles trivia I: “Dear Prudence” was inspired by Mia Farrow’s sister, Prudence.
–Beatles trivia II: “Blackbird” was inspired by Bach’s Bourrée in E Minor.
–You think Cardi B listens to a lot of Bach?
–Sideline reporters aren’t really reporters.
–And NFL analyst Troy Aikman never told me anything I didn’t already know.
–There are no diamonds in the rough. Only my old Titlists.
–For the golf or movie buff in your life: “Caddyshack: The Making of a Hollywood Cinderella Story,” by Chris Nashawaty.
–Baseball is the most-haunted sport. Hence, playoffs at Halloween.
–Dear Dodgers. You can buy hitting. But you can’t buy grit.
–Best tacos in Southern California: Yuca’s on Fair Oaks in Pasadena
–This year’s favorite costume for dads. Top Gun
–This year’s favorite costume for moms: The Cloud
–Who took the anchovies out of Caesar salads? And where do I complain?
–Sports producers should find the sideline version of rumpled and animated Steve Kornaki.
–Meanwhile, maybe football teams should stick with one uniform?
–You know, inflation always feels like a scam to me.
–“We are a nation of sheep, and someone else owns the grass.” (George Carlin)
–If Medusa had a dating profile: “No creeps. Interest in masonry preferred.”
–Worse thing to happen to Millennials: Slack
–Worst thing to happen to their parents: QR codes in restaurants.
–Love my Trader’s Joe’s paella. But the shrimp appear to be mating.
–It’s not October till I pick up beer brats at Schreiner’s deli (serving Glendale since 1952).
–Sorry to see Irwindale Raceway go.
–But we’ll always have Glendale.
–I don’t want to live in a world without race tracks, movie theaters or bookstores.
–Miss Al Michaels on “Sunday Night Football.” And so does NBC, the idiot network that forced him out.
–Best bar vibe in the San Fernando Valley: Forman’s Whiskey Tavern in Toluca Lake
–Best dive: Avignone’s in Montrose
–Four magic words: Coconut Curry Pumpkin Soup (on Allrecipes.com)
–Remember, bacon makes everything better. Even Bloody Marys.
–Top five all-time sportswriters (as voted by me): Jim Murray, Bernie Lincicome, David Israel, Red Smith, Bill Plaschke, Mike Downey.
–OK, that’s six. Sue me.
– “Arizona is the corner into which America sweeps its dust.” (Bernie Lincicome)
–Lesson from the L.A. City Council fiasco: More than anything, our whispers reveal us.
–Takeaway: America still has way too many whispers.
– “Autumn leaves don’t fall, they fly.” (Delia Owens)
– “Autumn is everything.” (Robert Browning)
For past columns, please go to ChrisErskineLA.com. Email the columnist at Letters@chriserskineLA.com
31 thoughts on “Fall, Football and That Dodger Goose”
*Our whispers reveal us* the most poignant message of the day. Well unless like me, the whispers are more like shouts into the void. There lies my lack of self control.
I enjoyed the list.
Oh & btw, if you hate autocorrect, try swipe — endless entertainment.
Did you mean “auto connect”? Or autocorrect?
Good question. I meant autocorrect, but it corrected me to auto connect. That’s my story and I’m standing by it.
I’ll take all the autumn-themed columns and pictures of Catty Cakes I can get! Hold the anchovies.
The Chronicle (Pasadena) the best Caesar Salad in the US. Tableside with anchovies! – closed. The DeLacey Club 41 (Pasadena) ditto, tableside & the same recipe. – closed.
Porta Via (Pasadena) the last true Caesar Salad bastion. Same Chronicle/41 recipe without the tableside ambiance. To go or nosh on the patio. Any port in a storm!
Thanks for the tip on Porta Via. By the way, I loved Club 41. Used to be a go-to place.
Worst thing to happen to Thursday Night Football? PRIME!
Those are some lovely random thoughts. One question: he might not strictly be considered a sportswriter but what’s your thought on Roger Angell?
Good question. His New Yorker stuff very good. More ethereal, if you;re into that. Almost too much above the fray, which I admire. Funny no one mentioned Red Smith, considered the best of the best. But he worked for the New York Times. And I HATE the New York Times, the most arrogant institution in America, after Facebook.
Agreed. Expensive, hard to find. Al makes it worth it though.
You’ve inspired me to make an authentic Caesar salad tonight. It WILL have anchovies!
Dump Plashchke and add the great John Hall
I’d like to send you a picture of a classic 1941 Cadillac two seater parked outside Ruth Chris in Pasadena last night. It wowed everyone ogling it. What is your Email address?
Ibeg2dfr@gmail.com … I love old Cadillac-ac-ac-ac-ac-ac-cas
(with thanks to Billy Joel)
letters@chriserskineLA.com. Thanks Joe!
Great comments , drove Fire Engines and Trucks in Glendale for 31 years , been retired 10 still drive like everyone else is going to crash into me
The stories you must have!
Caesar Salad w/Anchovies
The Studio Restaurant
Morton Grove, Illinois
An interesting fact: It was owned by Charlie Leibrandt’s parents and they had lots of photos from his major league baseball days hanging in the lobby of the restaurant.
“We’ll always have Glendale” 😆😆😆hilarious!
Loved the goose
Along with the missing anchovies, you can no longer get onions for your hotdog at a sporting event…what’s up with that?
Here’s a new observation for me (along with everything tastes better in a wine glass-even prune juice. Add a straw and wheeee): A very well known person claimed that he could make things happen “just by thinking about it”. I tried that and it works! Right now, George Clooney and Hugh Jackman are sitting on my sofa waiting for Mount Gay gimlets. Sweet!
What about Bob Verdi – In the Wake of the News?
Verdi very good. As was Dave Condon. As was Malamud at LAT. I also happened to like TJ a lot.
Thanks for the tip on Yucas on Fair Oaks–we’ll add that one to our “must do” list!
Just my random thought — Doesn’t Hal Lebovitz belong on your all-time great sportswriters list?
don’t know him
After two weeks in Greece Croatia and Portugal- all of these issues …
When you have a weekly blog
It’s like a tiger by the tail
A thrashing writhe, sometimes a slog
Search for a grail, oft no avail
You sift through the detritus
Look for lyrics in the dust
Parse the words, toss the arthritis
But feel the keening of its rust
See through the measure of your training
Instinct talent you must trust
Humanity the love remaining
It’s edge saying what you must;
Years of the journaled isms—
That sport of features in your blood
And always the domestic schisms
Timeless gaps misunderstood
By the casual observer
Blind as a piece of wood;
You must render them with fervor
But need eyes so you could
Say and be all you could be
The moments tick with time’s melee
That big cat waits for the dawn’s bounce
You free associate—and pounce
Upon the twists and turns of flesh
No feline’s got your tongue to mesh
Though It’s eyes flash with language fresh;
Fingers poise, the coffee steams
A precipice awaits your dreams
And then the words begin their all
You dodge the banal and the trite
Sieze air, and begin to write….
Love the Cloud costume. AND
Who took the anchovies out of Caesar salads? And where do I complain?