Brown Butter & Better Bike Views

Me on the left with the lovely Molly Gardner, Grants and Special Projects for Arts Council Long Beach

Did you know that both the hit t.v. shows Dexter and Miami CSI both film frequently in Long Beach? Yep, tucked away on the East end of the city our beach front houses on the penisula often pretend they're in much warmer and more humid weather. Film crews are showing up all over the LBC now. Yesterday on the way to a meeting with Molly at the Arts Council for Long Beach Charlie and I stopped for some morning C&S (caffeine and sugar) at the Berlin Coffee House and alas it was closed for a car commercial. Happy for Berlin's owner Kerstin, but bummed for ourselves, we took solace by meandering around the block to the hot new bakery Shortnin Bread where we enjoyed the most delicious brown butter raspberry tart I have ever eaten in my life. Haven't been to Shortnin Bread yet? You must go. It's so worth the trip - and if you ride your bike you'll feel far less guilty about the calories...and it's so exciting to see it as a part of the new energy and style blooming in downtown LBC.

Molly, Charlie and I had a fun meeting scheming up all sorts of creative ways the Arts Council and WoBSoCal can collaborate together - more on that soon.

If you already ride your bike frequently I know you'll agree with me - getting a bike view of your neighborhood is a very different view than by driving in your car. You notice much more and it's much easier to stop and check things out (like a new shop!). Ever wonder why the happening tourist spots are filled with bikes? There it is - bike speed is the perfect touring speed. On that note I'd like to share that you can tour "Long Beach by Bike" with Mobility Adviser Charlie Gandy. The tours are free and you can read an overview of the details on this page. In collaboration with Women On Bikes SoCal Charlie is also happy to create a special tour for your interests. Curious? Send us a note at

Recently a friend and I went to check out the scene on Abbot Kinney in Venice and to see the Linus Bikes retail shop. I am still bike-less and still deciding what type of bike I'd like next. I really like the Public Bikes, the Linus Bikes and the Electra Bikes - how to choose? I still have a little time as it's going to be a Christmas gift...

I lived very close to now very popular shopping district on Abbot Kinney in the Ocean Park neighborhood of Santa Monica from about 1992 until 2004. The changes in the whole area are more remarkable each time I visit. It was becoming a popular hot spot then, but I would never have predicted what's evolved today. Walking along we saw a gorgeous and eclectic array of bikes out and about including the above two Kate Spade bikes from the Shutters hotel.

Oh I can't wait until Long Beach has bike share! It's on it's way but probably won't be in place for another year or more. Imagine how convenient to hop on a bike one place and leave it at another just like you can do in D.C.!