Sunday Brunch

photo by Luis Miguel González

Okay, Okay, is everyone here?

I know you’re probably wondering why the Queen chose Camacho’s Cantina on the very touristy Universal City Walk at Universal Studios in California. But I swear Camacho’s has INCREDIBLE food and some of the best Margaritas the Queen has ever tasted. I’ve already ordered us the chips and salsa and guacamole (which they make at your table). They are to DIE for.

After a thought-provoking and intense conversation in the Saturday Errands post (for which I must give a shout out and heartfelt thank you to Marzirocks for being courageous enough to start), the Queen thought we could use a little jollity and frivolity–which of course sounds like the name of two gay Muppets (Bert and Ernie, are you listening?). So grab one of these Patron Margaritas and dip one of those melt-in-your-mouth tortilla chips into that freshly-made guacamole and let’s have a fabulous day.

Sampson McCormick

A funny young man. It’s always a pleasure to see someone turn their difficult moments into something positive. And the boy is definitely “crackin’ but he fackin'”, meaning he may be telling jokes, but he’s also telling the truth.

Life Has Its Ups and Downs

Since we’re so close to an Amusement Park, why not try our hand at Roller Coaster Creator, and build one of our own? The Queen warns you: it’s not as easy as it looks. The program actually factors in physics. But I love a good roller coaster. It’s where everyone becomes a screaming queen.

“Art is not a mirror held up to reality, but a hammer with which to shape it.“–Bertolt Brecht

Ain't my collage purrrty?

The late theatre artist and social activist Robert Alexander (and a personal mentor of mine), used to say “In the Act of Artistic Creation, we are Whole and Sane.” Creativity and Imagination are primary tools to the discovery of oneself, and the world. I was a part of the production talked about in the linked article, and while we were there we led workshops in which I saw people transformed through the power of their own Artistry.

The Queen LOVES this site from the National Gallery of Art. In preparation for our final California destination, give a couple of the interactive projects a try. And then print them out and put them somewhere that you can see to remind yourself what a special creator you are.

The Getty

The Queen has been extremely blessed to see some phenomenal places in this world of ours. The J. Paul Getty Museum has got to be among the top 5. Nestled in the California Hills–just outside of L.A., it is the perfect coalescence of Form and Function. The museum and the grounds that surround it are nothing less than jaw-dropping–with exhibits featuring the great masters and grounds that feature unimaginable views of the City of Angels. Every vista, every garden is as much a work of art as any piece in the museum. I can (and do) wander through it’s serene Immensity from morning till evening, contemplating the human ability to create. If I do nothing else when I am in Southern California, I refuel my soul with a visit to The Getty.

Well, it’s a long trip back for some of us. But we can always sleep in the car or on the plane. Thank you for sharing another Sunday afternoon with the Queen. And tell me, Miss Things: what eateries and destinations throughout the world should we visit next? Let the Queen know and I will book reservations!


6 thoughts on “Sunday Brunch

  1. The Getty sounds amazing! One of my favorite places, being a native Chicagoan, is the Art Institute. I could spend days just wandering around that building, taking everything in. It’s such a calm and meditative environment…especially on weekdays, when one can be spared the tourist bus drop-off crowd.

    Thanks for another lovely Sunday brunch, Scotty. 🙂

  2. I’m fond of the Dali Museum in St. Petrrsburg and I adore the National in Washington, the Tate and V & A in London and the aforementioned museums mentioned in LA and Chicago but do you know where I LOVE to go? The Gallery at the Bellagio in Lames Vegas. I have planned trips arohnded planned exhibits and never hit the gaming floors.

    A few years back they had over 50 Monets. I stood inches away and could actually see brush hairs left I. The paint. Exquisite.

  3. Those are some great photos of the Getty.

    Most of the places I’d love to visit I probably haven’t even heard of yet! I’m dying to start daytripping here near my home now that my nest is emptying of children. (Not that you can’t take the kids, but mine seemed to have an infinitesimally brief middle ground between trips geared to a small child and trips dominated by eye-rolling and inability to enjoy themselves in proximity to a parent.)

    Someday I’ll get back to England, and maybe even go to Paris. I’ve never seen Barcelona, or Greece, or Prague or Japan. I’ve been nowhere in Canada except Montreal. I’ve only been in 31 states in the US – and probably spent time enough to sight see in fewer than 20. My parents instilled a deep love for the beach in us, and I now only get there maybe every two or three years. If I could, I’d keep returning to the big cities I’ve enjoyed (San Francisco, Manhattan, L.A., London) even though there are so many more I’ve never been to.

    No doubt, we’re all going to run out of time and energy before we can work through our lists.

    But on the topic of museum visiting, I’ll go anywhere. Just drop me off if you’re in a hurry, though. I want to read everything and look at everything I like two or three times. I prefer collections that present art and artifacts of daily life in historical context, and I lean towards folk art, “decorative arts,” textiles & costume collections, and collections with a literary or theatrical connection. Makes sense most of my favorites are smaller museums and those I’ve been lucky enough to return to several times.

    I lived outside of DC for a couple of years and many weekend trips into town did nothing to exhaust my fascination with the National Gallery of Art – I’ve only been to the Corcoran twice because I still have to return to the National when in DC. But the American Folk Art Museum is my favorite.

    Possibly my favorite single museum – of those I’ve visited – in the U.S. is the Gardner in Boston. I went there over and over again from the mid 70s and through the 80s. I loved its small scale & location on the Fens (though the neighborhood wasn’t considered so great in the 70s). One of the goals in my 5 year plan is to get back to Boston so I can revisit the original building and its recent addition.

    Aaaand – I’m clearly rambling. Enough. Thanks for another great prompt!

  4. I’ve been lucky enough to do a bit of international travelling – and my list of absolute favorites:

    1) The d’Orsay in Paris. If you love impressionists, this is the place to go. Rooms full of some of the most beautiful pieces of art – Monet, Renoir, Degas – the list goes on and on. For the history buffs, you can’t beat the Conciergerie – it still smells like the prison it once was. Fascinating visit.

    2) The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. The old Dutch masters and my absolute favorite – Vermeer. A wonderful place to visit, a can’t miss if you’re in Amsterdam.

    3) The Hermitage and the Summer Palace in St. Petersburg. You can spend days wandering around both places. The amber room in the summer palace is absolutely amazing. I’m a fan of Russian history in the time of the czars – the Peter Paul Fortress (where several of the royal family are buried) is another fascinating place. St. Petersburg is well worth the visit if you ever have the opportunity.

    4) ….and for Sunday brunch – nothing beats the Beverly Hills Grill – in Beverly Hills, Michigan :).

    Thanks again, Scotty, for a great Sunday post and my Sunday afternoon smile.

  5. Scottyf, you would be a welcome addition to any brunch. I found myself in the middle of an interesting conversation about the movie The Help last weekend. One mid 30-something caucasian friend (Melissa) thought it was “phenomenal” while an early 40-something African-American (Karin) friend found it “insufferable”.

    This was soon followed by Hilary Rosen’s comments about Ann Romney having been a stay-at-home mom and never worked a day in her life. While neither of them has kids yet, Melissa was offended, and Karin agreed with Hilary . The part of the conversation I offered was whether or not it would make a difference if Ann had a nanny, chef and housekeeper.

    • Probably you’ve seen Liz Gumbinner’s essay on the Romney, Rosen, and follow-on, it was reprinted on the Huffington Post site):

      While I might not agree with which points she seems to find most telling, it’s a pretty sane take, I think.

      My view is that while I’d *prefer* our leaders to have some personal understanding of what life is like outside of the top 10% of the economic spectrum (and you can be in that top 10% and not feel like you’re out of the upper middle class, especially if you live in a high cost area and have a family), it’s not the litmus test I’d go with if I only had one. Smart, good, principled people have been born into fortunate circumstances in this world, as well as the opposite.

      Though I don’t imagine I’ll be voting for Romney even if his wife is discovered to have been the Poor Little Match Girl who’d kept her 7 younger siblings from starving to death in her youth and was only saved from an early demise due to hypothermia by a fortunate encounter with a shelter outreach worker.

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