Jon Crispin's Notebook

Karma Congestion… (UPDATE)

©2016 Jon Crispin

…is a phrase my dear friend Alex Ross coined many years ago.  I think I have mentioned it here before.  We use it as a general catch-all to cover anything from mild creative block to what the Germans call Weltschmerz.  I have been somewhere in it for a while now.  I haven’t been posting much, but I have been shooting quite a bit and I wanted to put up a few shots here. / I was chastised by a Kathmandu policeman just after I shot this ↑.  The white kiosk in the middle of the intersection was put there this very day.  The old one was lying on its side on the corner beside me (and is quite possibly still there).

©2016 Jon Crispin

I’ve been in and out of the New Haven train station a lot lately and have always liked these tunnels.

©2016 Jon Crispin

Our friends Scott and Lisa very generously invite us to visit them on Block Island for a few days in July.  This was the view from their rental.  We had a lovely time.

©2016 Jon Crispin

Olive is now just over 2 years old and is the most wonderful dog. My pal Peter Carroll took this picture.

©2016 Jon Crispin

These two big stones are in the empty lot next to the house on Ensenada Drive in Woodland Hills, CA where Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band recorded “Trout Mask Replica”.  I was going to take a photo of the house, but it is a private residence now and I didn’t want to bother the current occupants.  I had a friend in college by the name of Greg Trout whose granny gave him a copy of the album for his birthday.  The only reason she bought it for him was that his surname was in the title.  When I first heard it, it seemed beyond unlistenable.  Now it is one of my most favorite records.  Beefheart was a genius.  Click on this only if you are open to weirdness.

©2016 Jon Crispin

My brother-in law John is also a huge Beefheart fan.  He was up for the excursion to Woodland Hills especially if it involved a stop at Musso and Frank is Hollywood.  John is totally amazing and so much fun to be with.  He was raised in Southern California and  his knowledge of the area is staggering.

©2016 Jon Crispin

He grew up in Palos Verdes and gave us a tour on a lovely Sunday morning.  This is a detail of a fountain  that is in the center of town.

©2016 Jon Crispin

Here is John and Lynne’s dog Scooter.  He is a mischievous sweetie.

©2016 Jon Crispin

Cris and I always go to Huntington Beach when we are in California.  The summer program for future lifeguards was happening as we were there.  There was a wide range of ages of the kids, and it was way cool to see all of the participants in their red suits and colorful caps.

©2016 Jon Crispin

The older kids paddled out beyone the end of the pier and back.  It looked exhausting.

©2016 Jon Crispin

The US Open of Surfing was happening the same day and the pier was jammed with people.

©2016 Jon Crispin

We also usually make it out to the Huntington Library in Pasadena,

©2016 Jon Crispin

mostly just for the chance to see Gainsborough’s Blue Boy.  It never gets old.

©2016 Jon Crispin

Peter was visiting from DC last week, and we made our annual trip to Essex to eat  fried clams at Farnham’s.  It was a beautiful day and the view from the picnic tables can not be beat.

Thanks for following and for giving me the opportunity to unclog some of that karma congestion.  I think it worked.  Cheers.

UPDATE.  This is indicative of how spaced out I am, but the picture of Olive was taken by Peter Carroll.  It is the best photograph of her ever, and he totally deserves the credit.  Sorry Pete!

Weekend

Posted in Baseball, baseball stadiums, drinking beer, Fried Clams by joncrispin on 06/07/2015

We took Peter back to the train in New Haven on Saturday.  But as his visits are not too frequent, we will go out of our way to take him to Farnham’s in Essex for fried clams.  This view from the parking lot always entices me.  The clams were brilliant as usual.

I have no idea what was going on here.

As it was Friday and the Sox were home, we then drove to the  Woodland T Station to take the Green Line into Fenway.  We had just two tickets for Cris and Peter, so I stood on line at the “day of game” window and scored a standing room space on the Green Monster.

It was a beautiful night for baseball.  I had never seen a game from the Monster before and it was a perfect place to watch the action.

I was standing beside two really nice guys from Huntsville, Alabama.  We kept buying each other beer, and  I think it was the first Miller Lite I have had in 30 years.  Scott and Jim were both Sox fans; they knew the team really well, and were perfect companions for the evening.  Baseball!

Peta Pixel/Peabody Essex Museum/Farnham’s

Posted in Architecture, Art, Asylums, Buildings, Family, Fish, Food, Fried Clams, Friends, Travel, Willard Suitcases by joncrispin on 18/06/2014

There was a very nice mention of the suitcases project on PetaPixel yesterday. Thanks DL Cade!

Cristine, our friend Kate, and I drove to Salem today to see the J M W Turner exhibit at the Peabody Essex Museum.  It is amazing and worth the trip.  No photos allowed in the gallery, but it is a very cool museum.  Note the early Airstream trailer (lower right) that is part of the mid century LA exhibit.

We then drove up to Essex to eat some clams at Farnham’s.  For those of you who follow this site, I have posted about this place before.

The upcoming 10 days are going to be very hectic for me, so please be patient if I don’t respond directly to email.  I’ll do my best.

Bob’s Clam Hut, Kittery Maine

Posted in Food, Fried Clams by joncrispin on 16/01/2013

Yesterday, Peter and I drove home from Maine where we were visiting my brother and his family.  Since we were near the coast, Pete had done a quick search of fried clam possibilities.  It is the off season so we weren’t sure what would be open.  A search of “fried clams southern maine” turned up one that looked promising.  So from Scarborough we headed south on the 95 and ended up in Kittery at Bob’s on Route 1.

It is really great; by far the cleanest and nicest of all the clam shacks that we have frequented.  And the woman who took our order was so nice.  You can see her on the right scooping out my chowder.

I had been feeling a bit poorly the day before and I wasn’t sure if fried clams at 11.45 in the morning were such a good idea, so I had the fish chowder.  It was perfect.  Not gloppy like some that use thickener or too much heavy cream.  The broth was milky and buttery with lots of fish.

Peter was going to get a small, but I figured I could eat a few so we got the medium box.  So the verdict is, highest marks to Bob’s.  It is now in our top two along with Farnham’s in Essex, MA.  I think the clams at Farnham’s are just a bit juicer, but Bob’s chowder is superior.

Farnham’s Again

Posted in Family, Food, Landscape, Nature, Rivers, Travel, Water by joncrispin on 15/06/2012

Peter and I made the first trip of the summer to Farnham’s yesterday.  The fried clams are really the best we have found anywhere.  I also had a bowl of the chowder which was very good.

Woodman’s / Farnham’s

Posted in Family, Food, Landscape, Water by joncrispin on 24/08/2011

Clams

Peter goes back to Union soon, and today was a good day to drive out to Essex for some clams.  We had visited Farnham’s in June and wanted to try Woodman’s.  We left Pelham late morning and arrived in Essex just before 2.00.  Woodman’s is the larger operation of the two and claim to be the originator of the fried clam.  We ordered a large and waited about 5 minutes.

Essex, MA

We went out back to the picnic tables and enjoyed the view and the clams.  It soon became clear to us that we couldn’t just operate on memory to compare the two spots, so we hopped in the car and drove down the road to Farnhams.  Ordered a small box there and sat at the outside tables.

clams

Both places are a must visit for anyone who heads up that way, but for us the Farnham’s experience was better in all ways.

Essex Salt Marsh

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