AZ OR BUST

Today I am heading deep into the southwestern desert: destination Tempe, Arizona for the 4th annual Desert Polo Invite.

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We’ve fine-tuned our bikes, built fresh mallets, and ran 10 circles through the house hoping not to forget a thing for the first big polo event of the year.

Snowbirds from Seattle, Portland, Pittsburgh and D.C. are fleeing their colder climes to soak up some desert sun and contend against the Southwest’s rough and ready gang of slayers.

I can’t fucking wait.

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p.s. Follow @labikepolo for updates from DPI! The first NAH qualifier of 2012!

L.A. bike life and movies about it

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Last week I decided to take the long way home from North Hollywood, riding to the eastern edge of the valley to catch the river path, and passing Griffith Park, which on that day called me to take respite in its refuge from the chaos that surrounds it.
As soon as I reached the edge of the park, it drew me in. I considered going deeper, but this parcel of park was speckled with sun and shade, with wide grassy spaces and plenty of good trees to lean up against.

I lived in the valley for eons, it seems; I have memories linked to every street and landmark and even some alleys, but I never realized how absolutely flat the whole damn dustbowl is. Sure, there are some grades, a few overpasses, but it’s just fucking flat. Nice for settling into deep thoughts and pedalling instinctively harder and harder as you fly down wide streets sucking you forward, on and on, further into the depths of suburbia in the masqueraded desert.

I moved to the one of the hilliest ‘hoods in L.A., Highland Park in Northeast L.A. I love flying down and pumping up the hills, and feeling myself get stronger and my speed and endurance build. I like the hilly side of town.

L.A. is enormous and our bike family is spread out to its very edges. Way across town from the L.A. polo house, the No Manor, is the Casa de Angelopes, the freak bike warehouse. A handful of other bike-houses act as cooperative enclaves for bike-happy Angelenos, the lot of whom are drawn together as an entire unit at least a few times a year. We are spread far and wide, but we share the carnal knowledge of the city’s gritty roughness mingled with all its glitzy absurdity from edge to edge.

Some of my friends have captured some of the beastly beauty of the L.A. bike scene on film, and are sharing it at the Vista Theater in Hollywood this Friday. Click Play below for a taste.

MOVIES ABOUT BIKES – AT THE VISTA THEATER, HOLLYWOOD from FUNWUNCE on Vimeo.

What’s green and white and comes in bunches? A CSA farm treasures gallery

I’ve got a lovely bunch of bunches! White carrots, cauliflower and celery were just a few of the good things at CSA this week.

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The scallions, spinach, kale, broccoli rabe and mixed greens contributed their own shades of green to the mix, along with tangelos, tangerines and blood oranges.
The carrot rainbow of orange, purple, red and now white carrots over the past several weeks has been a delight. The mushrooms and beets from weeks prior have been some of the most flavorful I have ever had.

Over the past 3 months I have been volunteering for CSA California, running a pickup location in North Hollywood. It has been a fantastic experience. Perhaps the best part has been sharing the fruit and veggies with others and having them get excited and be eager to participate in helping out at CSA too. Of course, it’s a joy to see people excited for the new assortment when they come to pick up and curious about new fruits and veggies.
CSA (Community Sustainable Agriculture) California operates throughout Los Angeles and offers pickup locations throughout the city as well as delivery options. Find out more and sign up at CSACalifornia.org.
Some photos from the fall and winter

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Watermelon radishes

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Spinach & chard pizza

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Squash medley: Sweet dumpling, spaghetti, kombocha (from top left clockwise)

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Fall centerpiece - artichoke, squash, persimmons, pomegranate. Circa early November.

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Spaghetti squash salad with mushrooms and mixed sprouts.

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Button mushrooms stuffed with quinoa, carrot and parmesan

 

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Ravenpaw, Kitty Guardian of CSA treasures