Old Familiar H.S.

Recognize this place? You should. It’s the go-to high school when the script calls for one. Most notably, it’s the rock ‘n’ roll high school of the great b-movie of the same name. It’s also the alma mater of one of LAMary’s sons, and the highlight of the tour she gave me yesterday.

Unfortunately, it’s the only picture I took. Sorry about that — a bit jet-lagged.

On to San Onofre today, which my reading material says is one of the best places on the globe to learn to surf.

Good thing, too. Catch y’all later.

— Gidget

Posted at 2:28 pm in iPhone, Popculch, Same ol' same ol' |

58 responses to “Old Familiar H.S.”

  1. Jill said on September 4, 2016 at 3:46 pm

    HAVE FUN! I’ve been so excited for you over here in the lurker’s corner. I am looking forward to hearing how it goes!

  2. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on September 4, 2016 at 4:55 pm

    Gidget goes to San Onofre . . . great movie title!

  3. Charlotte said on September 4, 2016 at 5:49 pm

    Dan Duane’s surfing book is also pretty good — Caught Inside — from the mid-90s …

    Have fun!

  4. Hattie said on September 4, 2016 at 6:28 pm

    That school does look familiar. Glad you are having a good time!

  5. Deborah said on September 4, 2016 at 8:51 pm

    Nancy, your sign off made me laugh. You have chosen a great way to end the summer, one you will remember for years to come. Have loads of fun.

  6. jcburns said on September 4, 2016 at 11:54 pm

    Am I right that it’s the Room 222 high school too?

  7. Sherri said on September 5, 2016 at 1:36 am

    Wikipedia says you’re right, jc: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Marshall_High_School_(Los_Angeles)

  8. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on September 5, 2016 at 7:44 am

    For Nancy’s trip home: http://www.outsideonline.com/1926561/life%E2%80%99s-swell

    Long form piece by Susan Orleans which she’s probably already read, but for anyone else, it’s quite a piece of reporting & writing in my opinion.

  9. Sue said on September 5, 2016 at 9:13 am

    Comment yesterday from kathy t: “the wild inaccuracies in the practice of medicine”
    It’s why I don’t watch medical shows. So annoying. Maybe this is common in those shows, but I’ve been seeing ads for some new ER-based medical show that looks like there are dozens and dozens of people working there. So many people around the patient that it looks like shoppers at a department store clearance sale.
    What the hell? Don’t they know that corporate medicine is now all about cutting staff? Oh I’m sorry – ‘deep efficiencies’ or ‘continuous quality improvement’ – whatever they call it these days, it still amounts to hiring consultants whose go-to advice is ‘get rid of people’.
    And how do they cram that many people into a workplace anyway? They’ll end up treating each other because someone’s going to trip over a fib cart or another employee.

  10. Deborah said on September 5, 2016 at 10:46 am

    I went to high school in Miami, FL (as I’ve said here many times before) at the end of the 60s when there were a lot of surfer wannabes. Surfing was kind of pathetic there in comparison to what was going on in California and Hawaii. Mostly people sat on their boards and paddled around trying to look cool. I knew two surfer girls, they were sisters who went to my church, or rather more accurately their mother went to church and coerced the girls to go occasionally. Those girls had long blond hair and were beautiful, they had lots of guys tagging along after them. Last I heard about them the older one died of an overdose very young, in her 20s, and the younger one spent time in prison for something or other. But for a brief time they were in their prime and they were glorious to behold. My sister had a boyfriend who was serious about surfing, after graduating from high school he moved to Hawaii for awhile, other than that he was a nerd, my sister met him through Latin Club.

  11. Minnie said on September 5, 2016 at 11:49 am

    The facade of the high school I attended, which was builtl inthe early ’20s, was similar to that of this famous one. I’ve seen other lookalikes, too. Must have been a popular template.

    Surf’s up.

  12. beb said on September 5, 2016 at 11:57 am

    On my drive to work I pass by an old but very distinguished looking school. You don’t have to have a sign to tell you that’s a school. About five-ten years ago the Detroit school system build another school behind it. It’s so bland and homogenized looking it makes one want to cry for the decline in architectural design.

  13. Sherri said on September 5, 2016 at 2:18 pm

    One reason that schools today tend towards the bland and homogeneous is cost. It’s cheaper to use a cookie-cutter design than to get a new one, especially if you’re building several new schools at once. You’d be amazed (well, maybe you wouldn’t be) at how much complaining you get about building “Taj Mahal” schools when it’s time to pass a bond for new schools. Parents with kids in schools are usually a minority of the voters, so you have to deal with a bunch of people who don’t have to ever set foot in the end result.

  14. Sherri said on September 5, 2016 at 2:30 pm

    Over the weekend, there were numerous Twitter exchanges among the likes of Josh Marshall, Norm Ornstein, James Fallows, Tom Levenson, and others, with various NYT reporters over the problematic coverage of the campaign by the NYTimes. Disappointingly, the NYTimes reporters mostly reacted defensively. One of the major points of contention is the continuing focus on the Clinton Foundation, despite the failure to find any wrongdoing, while the Times has completely ignored, for example, the story of Trump giving money to Pam Bondi (through his foundation, no less!) and then her dropping the Trump U case.

    You can find Marshall’s case on the TPM editor’s blog. Fallows addresses the media problem here: http://www.theatlantic.com/notes/2016/09/trump-time-capsule-92-how-the-media-undermine-american-democracy/498461/

    Krugman also calls out the press today: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/05/opinion/hillary-clinton-gets-gored.html?ref=opinion&_r=0

    And then we have Chris Wallace, the moderator of the third debate, answering Howard Kurtz’s question about what he would do if one of the candidate says something he knows to be untrue, saying that it’s not his job to call that out. You know Chris, we don’t really need you there just to ask the questions; we could have them draw the questions out of a hat.

  15. Sherri said on September 5, 2016 at 2:34 pm

    Tom Levenson’s case against the NYTimes: https://inversesquare.wordpress.com/2016/09/02/dear-new-york-times/

  16. David C. said on September 5, 2016 at 2:35 pm

    Something like this, Sue.


  17. Dexter said on September 5, 2016 at 2:51 pm


  18. Dexter said on September 5, 2016 at 2:56 pm

    …and at 4:20, when school lets out, the cool kids meet at the side of the school building to spark up….

  19. Sherri said on September 5, 2016 at 3:09 pm

    Sometimes, you need to actually read the report, rather than just search it: http://www.mediaite.com/online/hillary-clinton-fbi-notes-didnt-really-show-39-times-hillary-couldnt-remember/

  20. Sherri said on September 5, 2016 at 3:28 pm

    More on the media focus on nonexistent Clinton “scandal” and lack of focus on numerous Trump scandals: https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2016/09/05/trumps-history-of-corruption-is-mind-boggling-so-why-is-clinton-supposedly-the-corrupt-one/?utm_term=.5b991eba0e2c

  21. Sherri said on September 5, 2016 at 3:32 pm

    Another Trump story mostly ignored by press. Why is the NYTimes so willing to run stories with most of the work done by Judicial Watch, but ignores Mother Jones?


  22. beb said on September 5, 2016 at 5:03 pm

    Sherri @14: I love the idea of the presidiential debates just pulling questions out of a hat!

  23. beb said on September 5, 2016 at 5:12 pm

    Sherri @13. Maybe Deborah could chime in here but I think there’s a difference between building a Taj Mahal and building a school with some decorative details. I’m always amazed while driving around Detroit by the number of old (and largely abandoned storefronts with wonderful details around the doors and windows or defining upper from lower floors. I can’t imagine that the shopkeepers back then were any more extravagant then they are today so those details had to have been cheap. I think it’s a modern style that shuns decorative details.

    I’m actually surprised that the Department of Justice has not looked into Trump’s “donation” to the Florida AG. This looks as clear an example as bribery / extortion as one can hope to get.

  24. Sherri said on September 5, 2016 at 6:06 pm

    Oh, I agree with you, beb, about school design. I’m just talking about what I’ve heard from voters when working on campaigns. Another reason for the lack of decorative details can be leaving room for expansion. The high school next to us had an interesting front with some light details, but that all went away when they had to add a new wing.

    Some of us here have tried to push for better design both inside and out (if you’re trying to allow for future expansion, then building larger common areas is good,Meir example, but that seldom happens, again for cost reasons.) School funding is such an idiosyncratic process, as well, with requirements from the state on buildings and often hoops you have to jump through to get funding help from the state for building.

    And yet during the 70s, somehow a whole bunch of ugly buildings based on the educational fad of open classrooms managed to get built, at least where I grew up.

  25. Sherri said on September 5, 2016 at 6:51 pm

    ATTN: NYTimes


  26. Deborah said on September 5, 2016 at 8:12 pm

    Yes, Sherri, the 70s were famous for “form follows finance”. And sorry to say Beb, but architectural details cost more and there aren’t very many craftsmen around who know how to do it anymore. You can get Disney-fied details made of chewing gum and styrofoam sure, but hardly anyone does limestone or marble carving and if they do it costs a fortune. Contemporary architecture got minimal partly because it’s cheaper, not all of it, because minimal details can be exquisite too, see Louis Kahn. My husband has done some design projects for community colleges and universities but there’s very little money in that any more, at least not in Illinois. Whatever happened to pride of place?

  27. Sue said on September 5, 2016 at 10:10 pm

    David C: Exactly. Happy Labor Day.

  28. Little Bird said on September 5, 2016 at 10:15 pm

    My high school? Was once a Kroger. Seriously. They just added a bunch of interior walls. These days they’ve thrown a lot more money at it and it looks much better, but I don’t think I’ll ever forget sitting in class one time and wondering if I was sitting in what had once been the frozen foods aisle.

  29. LAMary said on September 5, 2016 at 10:17 pm

    Deborah, I bet you would love some of the details of that high school’s interior. Lots of handmade tiles with designs pressed into them, painted and glazed in multiple colors. The neighborhood and alumni have kept that school maintained and preserved, thank goodness. Same neighborhood has the Shakespeare Bridge, which the neighborhood association has preserved. It’s a charming little bridge over an arroyo.
    Nancy did not note that I showed her the public library that stands on the corner where Leonardo DiCaprio’s house used to be.

  30. LAMary said on September 5, 2016 at 10:19 pm


  31. beb said on September 5, 2016 at 10:56 pm

    Deborah… you’ve burst my bubble quite expertly. I’ll go away and have a sad…

  32. Sherri said on September 6, 2016 at 1:29 am

    Phyllis Schafley has died. In light of the maxim to not speak ill of the dead, I have no further comment.

  33. Sherri said on September 6, 2016 at 1:31 am

    That’s Schlafly, rather.

  34. Deborah said on September 6, 2016 at 5:13 am

    One of Phyllis Schlafly’s sons lived in St. Louis when I lived there and everyone knew he was gay. I always wondered what she thought about that. She was notorious for fighting against the ERA, that seems like a million years ago.

  35. Suzanne said on September 6, 2016 at 6:34 am

    I read somewhere that Schlafly has a new book coming out on why Trump is a great choice for Pres. And then she dies. Might be a lesson there for the country.

  36. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on September 6, 2016 at 7:42 am

    The chief political correspondent at Politico, Glenn Thrush, said on Twitter: “RIP, Phyllis Schlafly. No woman ever worked so tirelessly, ventured so far on behalf of the belief that other women should do none of that.”

    Which sums her unusual career up rather well.

  37. Danny said on September 6, 2016 at 8:25 am

    …and at 4:20, when school lets out, the cool kids meet at the side of the school building to spark up….

    Dexter, that was funny. And it’s probably why our resident Spicoli could not drag herself to post for a new thread.

  38. Danny said on September 6, 2016 at 8:30 am

    Hey, Nance. I read this weekend that Panda BEARS are no longer on the endangered list.


    Surf on!!

  39. Jenine said on September 6, 2016 at 9:43 am

    Sounds like you’re going to be near the San Onofre Generating Station, with the nuclear breast domes. http://calwatchdog.com/2013/07/23/san-onofre-follies-the-man-made-power-shortage/ . Wonderful beaches, always watch for rips.

  40. brian stouder said on September 6, 2016 at 10:09 am

    Those nuclear breast domes are da-bomb!

  41. Danny said on September 6, 2016 at 10:57 am

    Brian, we always refer to them as the Dolly Parton theme park.

  42. brian stouder said on September 6, 2016 at 11:11 am

    Well, that’s one thrill-ride I suppose I’d get in line for!

    Today is a bad-news day in Fort Wayne….


    (and let me just say, the ‘make-shift memorial’ photo strikes me as a little Hunger Games-y)

  43. Deborah said on September 6, 2016 at 11:25 am

    I’m not looking forward to another travel day, going back to Chicago where it’s hot as hell. Later in the week it will be better though, hopefully moving into fall. Meanwhile it’s cool and dry in NM.

  44. Icarus said on September 6, 2016 at 1:10 pm

    Funny how my high school seems to have followed that architectural style.


  45. brian stouder said on September 6, 2016 at 2:11 pm

    My high school, still going stong!


    Our daughter goes to Wayne High School, which is still in my brain as “new” and “fancy” – but it’s 50+ years old, and in a 1970’s style.


    (off to the right of the photo is their planetarium, which is very cool!)

    Northrop High School, which was built around the same time as Wayne, is identical (except for the new New Tech wing on Wayne, which Northrop doesn’t have)…walking in there is a strange experience!

  46. brian stouder said on September 6, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    Pardon my math! Both Wayne and Northrop are in their 40’s!

  47. Sherri said on September 6, 2016 at 2:20 pm

    One of the things I’ve liked the most about the Clinton campaign this time is that it clearly demonstrates that she learned from the mistakes of the 08 campaign and systematically fixed them. That’s why the campaign has never really faltered during any of the inevitable downturns of the race; they have a long term plan, and don’t overreact to the day to day news cycle. I like people who recognize mistakes and learn how to use those mistakes to perform better next time; it suggests an analytical mindset with which I’m very comfortable.

    Here’s a longish profile of Robby Mook that goes into the nuts and bolts of how this cam about: https://www.yahoo.com/news/robby-mooks-playbook-may-win-000000653.html

  48. Sherri said on September 6, 2016 at 2:23 pm

    Another reason why picking questions out of a hat would be better than Chris Wallace: http://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/now-that-you-mention-it–2

  49. Sherri said on September 6, 2016 at 2:31 pm

    I like this a lot – Phyllis Schlafly the Bizzaro RBG: https://thinkprogress.org/bizzaro-ruth-bader-ginsburg-is-dead-2e0ad5cd6c2d#.igc9z0acq

  50. Sherri said on September 6, 2016 at 2:37 pm

    Tom Levenson on the Bill Clinton-Laureate story: https://inversesquare.wordpress.com/2016/09/06/dear-washington-post/

  51. Jill said on September 6, 2016 at 3:33 pm

    MichaelG, I am just catching up after the long weekend and saw your sucky news. I’m sorry you’ve got another challenge thrown your way. Your attitude and sense of adventure have been inspiring to me and I hope you get to continue to live that way for a long time. All good wishes to you.

  52. brian stouder said on September 6, 2016 at 5:04 pm

    Sherri – that piece on Mook (rhymes with ‘book’) was superb!!

    Thanks for sharing the link

  53. Julie Robinson said on September 6, 2016 at 7:21 pm

    Am barely following the news and have no internet but have to share some good fortune with you. We bought a house in Orlando today and plan on eventually retiring here. Until then our kids will live here.

    The house is right down the street from our daughter’s church in an older neighborhood that has become hipster land. It needs a lot of work but it’s on a lake and has a pool so we’re thrilled. But boy did the former owner leave it filthy!

  54. Sherri said on September 6, 2016 at 7:52 pm

    Congratulations, Julie!

    In other news, David Brooks is astonishingly dishonest about Obamacare, and Jonathan Chait shows how: http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2016/09/david-brooks-why-did-obama-promise-health-care-takeover.html

  55. Deborah said on September 6, 2016 at 9:27 pm

    Julie, that’s wonderful. What a great thing for you and your kids until you retire. As I recall your daughter’s church is in an interesting neighborhood. Good for you.

    I’m back in Chicago where it’s 90 degrees at 8:30pm.

  56. Sherri said on September 6, 2016 at 9:27 pm

    Trump could release this info without affecting his tax audit at all: http://www.newsweek.com/donald-trump-tax-returns-495955

    Maybe now that the press corps has decided that Hillary has held an acceptable press conference, they can focus on Trump’s taxes.

  57. Jill said on September 7, 2016 at 12:40 am

    Deborah, it’s hellish in Chicago right now but will be much better by the weekend.

    Congratulations, Julie. Sounds like a great setup for your family now and later.

  58. susan said on September 10, 2016 at 7:46 pm

    Hughes High School, Cincinnati

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