Burbank is a city full of little surprises -- over the years I've found a fair share of pleasant surprises scattered across the low lying, rather sleepy little town. Across the street from the fabulous Safari Inn is one of the finest Burbank secrets...Hyaena Gallery. Started by ex-Bostonians Bill & Sherry Shaefer, the space has hosted dozens of art openings, most all of them of a dark or somewhat devious nature. This week marks the beginning of their 3rd year, so come down and check out artist Erin Martinez's collection. While you're at it, pick up some odd literature, bondage themed hi-ball glasses, or a lovely Art Frahm print.
Hyaena Gallery 1928 W. Olive Ave. Burbank, CA 91506 1-818-972-2448
Earlier this week upon hearing the news involving the highly emotional but equally ridiculous actions of hip-hopper Papoose, the fiancé of jailed rapper Remy Ma, the voice of Dr. Phil popped into my head and I could just hear the TV psychologist uttering his trademark words to the "Mix Tape King" Papoose: "What were you thinking?"
Really though! On Monday when he was scheduled to wed his lady behind bars, Papoose (born Shamele Mackie) attempted to sneak a skeleton handcuff key into Rikers Island where he was headed to the New York City jail's altar.
Once guards found the key on him he got ejected from Rikers and banned from the facility for six months. What a dummy! Everyone (especially gangsta rap aficionados) should know that whenever you go visit someone in jail or prison that they search you thoroughly from head to toe, and often beyond. What were you thinking, Papoose?
And if that ain't enough, then the following day when Remy Ma (born Reminisce Smith), who was arrested for last summer outside a downtown NYC club allegedly shooting her former friend Makeda Barnes-Joseph (who she said robbed $3000 cash out of her purse), got sentenced in the New York Supreme Court to eight years in prison, Papoose was in the (court) house and was not happy. "Fuck you. Put me in jail muthafuckers!" and "Lock me up! Fuckin lock me up" were among the impassioned wishes the visibly emotional Papoose shouted towards court officers upon Remy's sentencing.
With gas prices going through the roof and environmental issues on the rise in most peoples' minds, riding one's bike to work/school/store etc. now makes more sense than ever.
And as you probably already know, this month is 'bike month,' with this week (May 12 - May 16th) being bike-to-work week with different regions recognizing different days as "bike to work day" this week. Today (May 16th) is bike to work day in New York City.
Yesterday, Thursday May 15th, was the official ride-to-work-day in many other places, including San Francisco, where many people cycled to and from their respective places of employment with many coordinated events taking place. One such event was organized by the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, who yesterday had their Bike Away from Work Party centered at The Rickshaw Stop, where bikers on their commute home could stop and unwind (they even had valet bike parking provided) and share stories and biking tips with fellow cyclists.
But really any day is a good day to ride a bike (with helmet of course). It is healthy and cheap and even if you work or go to school an impossible cycling distance from your home you can always cycle part of the way and either A) lock up your bike where you board a bus or train or B) bring the bike with you on the bus or train or C) throw the bike in the back of your car, drive most of the long distance, and cycle the last few miles to your destination. One interesting statistic posted this week by the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition on their website is that almost 40% of Bay Area commuters live within five miles of their workplace -- which is the ideal distance for a bicycle commute.
The fine organization Walk Oakland Bike Oakland (WOBO) is meeting up at 6PM today (May 16th) at Mama Buzz Cafe at 2318 Telegraph Avenue in Oakland for an all-volunteer bicycle and pedestrian advocacy group with music and beverages and lots of information on bike and pedestrian projects in Oakland. Meanwhile, up in Seattle, today Starbucks (who, remember, were once a small hometown coffee business in the north west town) are organizing a bike to work day today (May 16th) Info
For information on other bike events this month in places in and beyond California, check out the League of American Bicyclists website. Meanwhile, the Bike Month NYC group is really well organized with lots of great events -- you can find more info here.