MsGeek.Org v2.0

The ongoing saga of a woman in the process of reinvention.
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Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Raining on my Open Source Parade...

Yesterday I didn't blog because I had a very full day. I hopped a Red Line train out of North Hollywood to Downtown for the LA City IT Committee meeting about Los Angeles adopting Open Source to save money. There were four Open Source advocates in the audience and two anti-Open Source sock puppets...I don't really know whom they were actually carrying water for but I suspect it's Microsoft. Mad props to Councilpersons Garcetti and Weiss...they seem to be really serious about this, not just trying to get Microsoft to cut LA a break.

Here's some links to the current situation:

Anyway, the weather reports suggested we'd get some "drizzle" yesterday, but it turned out that we were in for a downpour. I got Blade Runner flashbacks as I ran through the pouring rain to Little Tokyo for some shelter and shopping. I finally found out how much an anime-related tchotchke was going to cost was a Samurai Champloo related Keitei (cell phone) strap based on the one dangling from Fuu-chan's tanto knife. Almost $40! Yeek! I'd rather take that money and buy a couple of Samurai Champloo DVDs...the next volume is coming out next Tuesday and I absolutely have to have it.

I felt better when I left Kinokuniya Books and sprinted a few blocks to Marukai's "98 Store" in the Japanese Village Plaza shopping center. While almost nothing costs $0.98 anymore...the unfavorable exchange rate between the Yen and the Dollar took care of can still find all manner of neat J-Stuff for $1.25 to $1.50 per item there. I got some kitchen goodies like a microwave steamer and a ginger grater, and some other miscellaneous stuffs like a little "shock pouch" to protect my Palm, three brush-style ink pens, and a cozy lined with thermal blanketing that keeps water bottles cold. Eight items, less than $11. It's nice to know that when I'm drooling over stuff at J-Box I can turn around and usually find what I'm drooling over for less by taking a little trip to Little Tokyo. There's also good food available at a reasonable, non-tourist trap price...I had some broiled fish (Red Snapper, known as Tai in Japanese) over rice with a salad and a good hot cup of tea for $6.

Going home was horrible...the rain got worse and worse. There was actually some lightning too so I wound up ducking into Fugetsu-do for a post-dinner snack. This place, specializing in traditional Japanese confections, was venerable even before World War II, and somehow it survived the Internment. It's now 102 years old, and has been in the current location since 1945. I had a little sweet mochi wrapped in a pickled cherry leaf...very interesting taste combo...and my favorite traditional Japanese sweet, a sandwich cookie made with two soft little "silver dollar" pancakes with a dollop of An bean paste in the center. Oishi, neh!

A last bit of advice: do not wear fleece if you are going to have to deal with torrential rain. I felt like Spongebob Squarepants when I finally squished my way home. If I had known we were going to get rained on so bad I might not have even made the trip, but oh well...I am at least not sick today like I thought I might be after all the exposure to the elements. We cracked the #2 spot on the all-time rainiest years for LA...3 more inches of rain will make this the rainiest year on record. w00t.