Friday afternoon I was walking down Fifth with a couple of Subway sandwiches in my backpack. This section of the Gaslamp Quarter is almost entirely restaurants, and most of them have dining areas out on the street, with the host or hostess’ podium right there on the sidewalk. I had spotted something odd ahead of me, but I’ll let this overheard exchange speak for itself:

Hostess: “Come quick, or you’ll miss something really cool! There’s a sandwich in the street!”
Voice from inside: “Oh, I already saw him.”

Guy dressed as a sandwich

For the record, it turned out to be part of a big promotion for the movie, Accepted.

The convention clearly strains resources to the limit. These traffic cones, used for creating lanes for the shuttles and whatever traffic was allowed in front of the convention center, include such messages as “Reserved,” “No Parking,” and “Stop”—none of which applied to their current use!

Traffic cones with varying labels

Now, I have yet to figure out the connection between Playboy models and comic books, except that these days they do seem to have the same target audience. There were several models doing signings and photo ops around the hall. On Thursday morning, though, this model hadn’t set up her booth yet. The bag on the table looked disturbingly like a body bag.

Playmate Body Bag

This last one actually has no connection to the con, but I forgot to post it on Monday. It’s probably only funny if you’re familiar with the BSD operating systems. (It took me a while, but I eventually realized BSD in this case meant Broadway San Diego.)

BSD Wicked

Here’s the latest round of strange sights from San Diego.

[Outhouse on a crane]We stayed at the Radisson Harbor View. The end of the hallway had a view of the harbor, but our room had a view of the construction across the street. When we first stepped onto the balcony, we saw a crane lifting an outhouse up to the topmost floor of the site. There’s something inherently absurd about a port-a-potty flying through the air.

We walked up and down Cedar Ave. from the hotel to the Little Italy trolley stop at least once a day, stopping at the same It’s a Grind coffee house we frequented two years ago. Strangely, we didn’t notice this message on the street until our last day in town:

No SBC to India

Now, it may look like a tagger’s commentary on outsourcing, but it makes more sense if you happen to know that India Street is just a block away.

Apartment high-rise with identical balconies... and one red umbrella.There were quite a few high-rise buildings that looked very much like this one. Sort of the skyscraper equivalent of clone homes, I suppose. This one had one difference: One of the tenants had set up a large, red umbrella on their balcony.

Moving on to the Gaslamp Quarter, we saw—but didn’t photograph—a club called Tsunami Beach. I don’t know about you, but if there’s a tsunami, the last place I want to be is on the beach!

This next one was actually pretty neat. The window boxes outside Dussini (a Mediterranean restaurant on Fifth Avenue) are full of low-water plants. Practical, low-maintenance, and still decorative.

Windows box with low-water plants

Finally, here’s a sign from somewhere along the 5, elsewhere in San Diego:

Fish and Richardson

I think it’s pretty safe to say that Richardson isn’t a fish…

Next: con-specific weirdness.

I mentioned that on Saturday, we left Comic-Con for a few hours to check out the ships at the Maritime Museum of San Diego. We saw five:

  • The Star of India, billed as “the world’s oldest active ship”
  • The HMS Surprise, a replica of an 18th century British ship.
  • The Berkeley, an 1898 steam ferry
  • The Medea, a 1904 yacht
  • A B-39 Soviet submarine.

The big attractions, of course, were the Star of India and the HMS Surprise. Naturally, the Star of India was closed when we got there.

Star of India as seen from a porthole in the Surprise
The Star of India seen from the Surprise

The Surprise was fun, though. It turns out it was built in the 1970s as a replica of an 18th century British Royal Navy vessel, the HMS Rose. It was sold to 20th Century Fox in 2001 and used to film Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World. After filming was complete, the museum bought the ship and renamed it the HMS Surprise in honor of the fictional vessel.

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I’ve been zombie-fied.

Comic-Con was fun, but exhausting. Add that to staying up too late last night and not being used to the heat…

You see, downtown San Diego was fairly nice all week. According to it only hit 83, which was uncomfortable when carrying a heavy backpack (or in Katie’s case, wearing a heavy pirate costume) in the sun, but quite comfortable in the shade or with a breeze. We got our first taste of what things have been like back home when we stopped for a bathroom break near the Irvine Spectrum area around sunset last night. It felt warmer at sunset in Irvine than it did in mid-afternoon in San Diego.

I don’t think the bedroom ever really cooled off last night, even with a fan running in the window all night.

Then after a night of “sleep” I got into work and I started hearing about temperatures hitting 108. It’s just… astonishing.

Anyway, I’m currently on twice my normal daily dose of coffee and I’m still spacing out and mistyping stuff.

(Originally posted on LiveJournal.)

Current Mood: 😴tired