Fun Facts About California

Fun facts about California

For my California history class, I had to come up with some facts about California that I didn’t know. The above linked article tells the facts that I have listed below. Some of these I knew, but most I didn’t know. I had no idea that the Windows wallpaper was a real photo! It looks too perfect.

  1. California is home to the “Avocado Capital of the World.” Every year, Fallbrook holds an avocado festival to celebrate.
  2. The Hollywood Bowl is the largest outdoor amphitheater in the United States. When it opened in 1922, it was merely a simple wooden platform with a canvas top!
  3. In 1964, San Francisco’s cable cars were named the first moving National Historic Landmark. The San Francisco cable cars are the only ones still operating in a U.S city.
  4. Wondering what the name of the world’s largest tree is? It’s General Sherman, and it lives in Sequoia National Park! At nearly 275 feet tall and a circumference of 102 feet, it’s certainly a large tree!
  5. Death Valley is the hottest, driest AND lowest National Park in the country! Despite its morbid name, due to these extremes, a great diversity of life lives within this park.
  6. Bet you know someone who lives in California! As the most populous state in the U.S., 1 in 8 residents live there!
  7. California is the birthplace of the internet. In 1969, the first ARPANET message was sent from a UCLA site. (That first message? “Lo”. He meant to say “Login” but….then the system crashed.)
  8. Thousands of visitors flock to the Golden Gate Bridge every year, but it wasn’t always so beloved. Many originally derided the design as ugly!
  9. Everyone knows the famous Windows wallpaper of rolling green hills on bright blue sky – but did you know it was taken in Napa Valley? (And is unedited!)

The Flintstone House

The Flintstone House

The above linked article tells of the origins of the house that sits near 280 in Hillsborough. The architect tells about how the house that was originally called the Santorini was imagined.

I am of the beige, not purple, lovers. It just looks wrong and tacky to me now. I do understand that the current owner uses it for parties, and not for living in. Most parties are at night, and you can’t tell that it’s purple, so I suppose it’s ok for that.

Alcatraz Escape

Alcatraz escape

The above linked article from 2014 tells about the Alcatraz escape on June 11, 1962. We’ve heard about this escape over the years, where three men made a rubber raft of raincoats and attempted to paddle out of the San Francisco Bay.

They tell about the tests that were attempted by Mythbusters back in 2003. The video is interesting to watch. Depending on the time they left, they may have made it. Some evidence shows that they did.

Here’s the Wikipedia article on the escape: The Escape. There is a lot of information there.

Part of why they think that the men didn’t make it to shore had to do with being in the water for a long length of time. So many people do a similar swim annually, that I think that it was possible. The speed that they’d have to go would be not an unreasonable speed in a boat. I think there’s a good chance they made it. One day we might know?

Live and Outside at The Riptide

I am confused about what day it is today, because I’ve become used to listening to Charlie play on Sunday afternoons. This week, he played, live, from the back of a pickup truck in front of the Riptide. The rest of the Treacherous French still weren’t there, but it was still fun.

Food and drinks were served at the door and tips were accepted all around. For the most part, everyone wore masks and most stayed at a distance. Unfortunately most people were standing in the street and parking spaces, but it wasn’t a very busy street. A few had folding chairs and settled in for the couple of hours.

It was nice to get out for a little while. The entertainment was great. The website here doesn’t seem to like my videos, so I can’t post them. Trust me, it was a good show.

Landfill stories

This exhibit is from the main library. It was from one of my last adventures there before it closed. It is all about how the landfill handles sitting around for so many years. It was interesting, but the photos don’t do it justice. Some bricks had imprints of paper that sat on it for years. It was a discovery of history that wasn’t meant to be discovered, but became a happy accidental find. There is so much history in our landfills just waiting to be discovered some day.

Baby Bison

Baby bison

The celebration of the anniversary of Golden Gate Park didn’t happen because of the shelter in place orders. Neither did the unveiling of the baby bison in Golden Gate Park, as described in the above linked article. They did put the babies in the bison pen, but no actual ceremony happened. You can see them if you drive by.

Welcome, babies!