Sunday, January 27, 2013

Well this is Fun!!!  We entered the Anthony Davis Notre Dame Killer Guacamole from our tailgates in the KABC guacamole recipe contest for the Super Bowl, tune it at 5 today on KABC Los Angeles AM790 to listen to the fun.

28JAN13 UPDATE: Fight On! Guac wins the KABC "Great Guacamole Contest" stay tuned! updated recipe, we gave up the secret ingredients on the radio show, so here's the updated version:

The 100th Rose Bowl: A Personal Perspective

The 100th Rose Bowl: A Personal Perspective -,
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The 100th Rose Bowl: A Personal Perspective, By John C. Pings, ©2013.

The 100th Rose Bowl is here, they are getting things going as we speak, all the planning, making of assignments and identification of resources are already underway. The planning for the 125th Tournament of Roses Parade has already begun too.  Oh by the way, the BCS National Championship Game is back for its historic final visit as well, historic? Yes, college football is changing and this will be the last year of the “BCS” as we know it. Our Beautiful Stadium, the Rose Bowl Stadium - “America’s Stadium” is nearing completion of its foundational for the future, if not controversial, renovation. As we look forward to a future of rotating national semi-final games and dueling wars with Dallas and everyone else for the “Big Game” of the future, I do believe it’s important to recognize what a truly historic year this year presents to the Community of Pasadena. Is not the history of ‘our little parade and game’ irretrievably tied to the City of Pasadena and the surrounding communities? And they to us? The upcoming Parade and Games truly do give our community a chance to enjoy these historic milestones and truly celebrate the fabric of our Community and it uniquely American Festival.

I am a Tournament of Roses volunteer member just like Michael, or um, oops, sorry, @Mr_Pasadena (I am @AltadenaTrojan, As Mr_Pasadena and many others can attest, some of our favorite moments are when the Parade is “put to bed” and we say “See you at the Bowl!” and hurtle towards the Arroyo Seco in time for kickoff. Lifelong friendships are annually rekindled among the white suited ones and The Rose Bowl Game is truly is a chance to say “What a great year! Lets have some fun!”

You cannot talk about the Rose Bowl without first talking about the Tournament of Roses. My first Rose Parades? Well, we lived near the Parade Route, two short blocks south of the old Horrell Football Field at PCC, way back in the Old School Days when there were bleachers.  Shortly after Christmas, the yearly invasion of the Good Sam RVer’s meant putting all the bikes and toys away and then extra duty cleaning up from the “wandering” RVers.  One year we were egged. A hot day, Parade traffic at a standstill and egg yuck, Fun! Most Parade Mornings the Family would walk up to the Parade Route with the 6-foot aluminum step ladder to the same “Spot” every year. The Spot was just up those couple blocks on Sierra Bonita I later walked to PCC, turning right there on Colorado past Bob’s Big Boy old bicycle up take-out window (insert sad tone) and Foster’s Freeze (insert sadder tone).  Dad would lead us on the annual pilgrimage to the roses to what is now the present day lawn of PCC’s spectacular library.  I have a couple siblings, “One at a time on the ladder” was the rule from Dad, the Engineer, so 2/3 thirds of the Parade was spent at the bottom of the ladder. I recall the very first day I heard the USC Trojan Marching Band, most likely in 1968, '69 or '70.  I do think my love for the Parade, for music and the arts and USC was born that day. Even though I did not see it, I heard it, but more importantly, I felt it.  That moment-in-time has stuck to me to this very day. I had to move to the frigid Northern Rockies in Montana and see how those people react to the Rose Parade for me to truly appreciate the Tournament of Roses. It is seen in such high regard and with such joy that it brings to so many other people in our country. Upon returning from graduate school and to Southern California, I joined in because of that Rose Parade “moment in time” day and thereby I got the chance to be of service to our community and to meet so many of you, likely who we wouldn’t otherwise know. It’s been, and continues to be, a rich and rewarding, and uniquely “Pasadena” thing to do together. These days? Once in awhile I get to see the Parade, actually, quite a few by now, so it’s all good!

My earliest Rose Bowl? My Dad Neal, helped start the chemical engineering department at Stanford back in the 50’s. In those 1971 and 1972 Rose Bowls of Stanford versus Ohio State and then Michigan our home was invaded by ChemE profs and graduate students. Joining us were the vaunted CalTech Beavers and my Dad’s colleagues on the road in the biggest bus I have ever seen from the Athenaeum to the Bowl.  Bombing down the gutterball lane on California Blvd. to watch my first ever college football game with Dad.  Heisman trophy winner Jim “Plunkett to Vataha” stunned Rex Kern and No. 1 Ohio State and Woody in the 4th Quarter.  Back then you could walk on the field after game, and I was fortunate to shake Jim Plunkett’s hand.  One year later; the same Invasion of the Jr. University (sorry my Trojan-ness leaked out there) and the thrilling ’72 game and late field goal kick and another Stanford heroic last-minute victory. That ’72 Bowl I saw from the old “I can’t see” first row seats, right behind the Stanford bench. Um, well, they were pretty excited. “Hey, Dad! Are these Rose Bowls Always Like This?” Hook, line, sinker, sold.

I have been a dedicated college football fan every since. Yes there may be one day a year I don’t root for your team, but hey, it’s the game, the experience and fellowship with sons, friends and family, Tournament folks. Those experiences that bring us together that are remembered forever, that day your favorite athlete of the days of yore hangs out at your tailgate with all your buddies.  These college football gatherings, these annual ritualistic settings, the tradition, the passing of the torch to a new generation - The Rose Bowl as a Place and as a Game has meant all of that and more to our Family. And I must pass along a fond memory of my Dad at many a game at the Rose Bowl, especially a USC UCLA game, and a Trojan Rose Bowl here and there too. I have Rose Bowl tickets stubs for about 35+ Rose Bowls, lost a few, but have only missed 4 in that 41 year span, I lived in Montana for three of those.  National Championships (those won on the field not in a computer), Sam The Bam, Greatest team ever '72 Trojans, Coaches Donahue, Hayes, Schembecler, McKay, Robinson Carroll.....

Sprinkle in all of the Rose Bowl -  Super Bowls....The '84 Olympics Soccer, sudden death penalty kicks of the Women's FIFA '99 World Cup, my kids’s AYSO teams parading with their team banners, golfing its open space, walking around it for fitness, rocking to U2, Pink Floyd, the Stones, and on and on….The Rose Bowl as a sense of place has become part of who our family is, part of who our Community "Is".  I tried to capture what it meant in a conversation the other day… I think the grand old stadium has given my family and I a great and lasting gift, a gift that I am equally grateful for. I think it stirs my imagination for what was, how exciting it is now, and with a hopeful eye towards what the grand old stadium’s future will be.

Our historic stadium has evolved over the years, the Rose Bowl Stadium website is chocked full of historic information and also great a “look in” and updates about what the new renovation is coming along too.  I thought it might be fun to look back recently and revisit some digital multimedia work I had done before the current renovation. Hey, its AltadenaTrojan! Yes of course there’s going to be pictures, links and stuff!!  Check out the Bowl in a non-traditional digital archive format before the last BCS visit to the Rose Bowl Stadium in 2010, before the renovations began. The Rose Bowl PhotoSynth, I do believe this is the first photosynth of the Bowl.

Then there’s that 2010 BCS Game’s Opening Ceremonies too

Its pretty exciting being around our grand old ball stadium, isn’t it? A bike race perhaps?

Can’t ever get enough of those B-2 flyovers either, 2013 Rose Bowl, (As much Jr. University band mercifully edited out)

And the 2011 Rose Bowl Opening ceremony too

Then there was that Rose Bowl lump-in-my-throat moment that I learned that I was around something bigger, something similar to my own passion for college football and its traditions. That’s the year I was fortunate to meet Composer John Williams and then later watch him conduct the unforgettable National Anthem at the 2004 Rose Bowl, with both the USC and Michigan Marching Bands with best flyover, ever, by a B2, F-22 and F-117. 

That Rose Bowl Game Tradition? its part of how we grew up, its part of who I, and many others, are, and its part of what my friends and fellow community members do year after year.  For the greater good of enjoyment and celebration of the New Year, but a chance for our Community to put out its best foot forward and welcome the world. There are 935 Tournament members and I do believe many feel about this thing we do here in a similar manner or fashion.  This Rose Bowl Game, I do believe it annually binds us together, it awakens our imagination, and it stirs our patriotic souls.

So yes, the 100th Rose Bowl Game is here.  Though even in “it’s” year, The 100th Bowl will share the limelight of attention in the press and in the ethersphere with “Dreams Come True”, the 125th edition of the Tournament of Roses Parade, and yes that historic BCS game too.  As we’ll watch the historical retrospectives take form and shape, The Rose Bowl Stadium and 100th Rose Bowl will be seen as an event, or as a place allowing us all to recall our own stories.  I really do believe our generation has a stewardship level of responsibility for this wonderful place, because of what it does uniquely for Pasadena and nowhere else.  From this writer’s and multimedia blogger’s perspective; The Rose Parade and Rose Bowl Game are a community “we thing”.  It is personal, very. It’s about the “we” part of us. So Thank You Pasadena.


copyright©2013, reuse with credit attribution permitted.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Bandfest Presented by Remo - Also Available via Webcast!

Bandfest Presented by Remo - Also Available via Webcast!

Saturday, November 27, 2010 = News, Notre Dame & We'll See

Trojan friends and family,
We're back .........Looking forward to a great end of the year, sorry the ViewFromMySeat has been laying low.  Been a busy year, needless to say. 

But we're still kicking, many off line video projects this year, and have been intermittently posting on youtube and  vimeo 

And landscape photography on panoramio ;  Very special and amazing, the picture of Ryan's Rainbow over the Coliseum got picked up on GoogleEarth, over 10,000 views.

2nd neat story rip, corresponded & sent pictures of Rose Bowl Stadium - BCS Game footage to parents of the native Alabaman USAFA parachutist,
who performed an "S" turn over Bama rooting section, split the uprights, and tagged his landing during BCS pre game, we got jets too.

Earlier this year the Oregon game bonehead fumble vid got linked up by and wearesc.con/espn, new record for a video blog, 1,500 hits in 12 hours 

Notre Dame, is here afront us, enough said.

For this Trojan, last time to try catch a "Come On RoJo Break One!" video,
got a good one this year, a 55 yarder vs oregon

We'll see............

a speedy and fleet afoot Freshman, wearing No. 28, will take the Field against the Irish, 

We'll see............

Will they bring their Band? last ND at USC game , Irish did, for the first time in 30 years that i can remember

2008 Notre Dame at USC PreGame

We'll see............

astounding, youtube went over 125,000 views, sort of grateful to you all among our viewers. thanks. Scoreboard and Links: (Go Mike Go!)
Mikey Punt Return Video: 35,114 views
Dad Punt Return Video: 20,925 views 

Looks like "We'll See" is "over" on this one..............

Stay tuned. Next week is "Own the City Week" and 19th Annual Roan & John  UCLA USC Tailgate

A hearty Fight On! to you all and the Best Wishes of the Holidays' Seasons from our family to yours.
Best Regards,

Tuesday, September 15, 2009 - San Jose State

Howdy Trojan Friends & Family,
Ronnie's web news attached along with a nice feature from TofR, RoseBowletin, a great way to catch up on college football news and plan your TV viewing for today.

Well we had a heck of a week last week, we were so happy to have the Davidson Family in town and had a lot of fun doing all things Trojan with them. While we greatly miss Ryan, we are so happy & grateful when they come around. Fight On! Kirby, Amy & Mallory, you have a standing invitation to come back any time you'd like, mi casa, su casa.

No video blog yet, the website still crashed, computer guy issues with busted URLs etc. however I have been assured that this "fix" will be in this week. In the interim we have been keeping abreast of all things USC Trojan Football by following the usual websites but more lately
have been sticking to <> and Ben Malcolmson's blog on

We shot the First quarter and half of the San Jose State USC game and will have a video blog post shortly. Mostly pregame and 1st quarter. Left early to shot Coaches video for Mikey's team the Pasadena Trojans. Tough game for the Tiny Trojans, virtually no practice due to brush fire driven air quality issues last week and they played North Long Beach, a feeder program for Long Beach Poly, Looking for a big rebound this week against Lakewood, 7 p.m. today, yes I will be there, so please don't call me or text me with the SC game score, the DVR will be ready for us when we get in!

In the meantime, its been a very busy two weeks for the YouTube site, we went over 80,000 views, shot and posted some incredible aerial firefighting footage from our neighborhood (we are OK), and made two very special videos for the Davidson's that were same day blogged and added to the collection. As always we are grateful to our viewers and hope you enjoy the stuff.

We had to break the email into 2 groups due to AT&T's draconian anti spam policy, we are only allowed to send out and email with 100 addresses. So if we get you twice, it's because we love you and we made a mistake, LOL.

Fight On! Beat the Buckeyes!!

Saturday, October 18, 2008 - Edition No. 1.1

Hello Friends, Family and Trojan Football Fans,

It’s with a heavy heart that I share the news that my friend Ryan Davidson passed away yesterday on his birthday. He was 16.

Many thoughts and prayers to Kirby, Amy and Mallory Davidson and to all those that cared and cared for Ryan over these past years.  That Ryan’s story is such a long one is a tribute to you all. Of course we are saddened that such a young man is taken at such a young age, way before his time, but all I can think of is that God needed him for something.


Many of you may recall the notes I shared with you all earlier this year about this remarkable and brave, young man.

I have had many notes in the past day, thanks to all for your support. Thanks to those of you that wrote a note to Ryan and his family on their website and please accept a special gratitude to those of you that supported his Relay for Life Team in Sun Prairie, WI.


Here is an excerpt from the Davidson Family website:

Ryan Davidson...Our Friend and Hero.

It is with great sadness and heavy hearts we tell you:

At 2:15 on February 19, 2009, and on his 16th birthday, the angels came and guided Ryan home. While resting comfortably and with his family near by, his 9 ½ year battle with cancer ended. And although his shell here on earth failed him much too early, his spirit is strong and will continue to live on in those of us lucky to have known and loved him. We have been blessed by his presence and look forward to the day that we join him in God’s castle.

All I could think of this morning during an absolutely glorious sunrise is the Hope and Light that Ryan brought to us all and continues to do so. His courageous battle against brain cancer is a living example to us all. He really is a True Trojan, he never stopped smiling, he never stopped giving, never stopped leading, he never gave up, always Fighting On!  I thought of how gratified I was when USC granted him his dream, and presented him an honorary admission to USC and Dean Harrington delivered it to Ryan and his Family in person. I thought of my Thundering Herd friends sneaking this “get well card” poster into the Coliseum, and them telling me of Ryan and his Dad’s reaction when they saw it as he walked onto the field as a USC Captain.

(Nice pic Jack, thanks).


I really appreciate the emails in the intervening time since my last note to you all late last year.  Everything is cool, I am fine, sad for sure, but relieved my buddy is not suffering anymore.  My hope and prayer now is that Kirby, Amy and Mallory find peace and love.


We shifted our focus from football blogging in late October to make a short film about Ryan’s visit last October, and then Tournament of Roses Season kicked in. Thanks to the many USC football fan readers of TheViewFromMySeat who wrote as well.  Sorry we couldn’t get more out. I have over 50GB of stored footage of UCLA, Notre Dame and other games that I will cut and post in the dark days of the off season.  It’s been an Amazing year, you readers and viewers tagged the YouTube website over 60,000 times and got an astounding 240+ Gigabytes of bandwidth, that’s over 240,000 MBs, wow, thanks.  In a small tribute to Ryan, over 90GB of that bandwidth were in October right after Ryan and Kirby’s visit.


He is a short clip from Ryan’s movie that his Family especially liked and I thought some of you might like to see.

That 10,000 watt smile is just unbelievable. This is the closing montage from the movie.  A Beautiful Day

Some other pieces from Ryan’s visit are here:


And finally if you want to relive Ryan and Kirby’s trip last October as we saw it and reported it as a real time video blog back to Amy and Mallory back home; the video blog is here: Video Blog


Well, who among us hasn’t known someone, a friend like Ryan or someone in our family, who has been touched by cancer?

While I couldn’t do much to relieve Ryan’s pain, or anyone’s, I can adopt Ryan’s cause, which was Relay for Life.

When Ryan received his unfortunate diagnosis in October, right before his visit, he said:


“We’ve got to raise the most money ever in next year’s American Cancer Society Relay For Life so that no other child has to go through this.

Being the top fundraiser for the past 3 years is not enough. We’ve got to set a record and raise thousands! I’m serious!”


My thanks to the many of you that have already contributed to Ryan’s cause, you and many others have done a great thing.

Ryan has done so well that his Story was posted on the main national Relay for Life webpage.

If you would like to contribute directly to his effort; here is his donation page for his Relay for Life Team at home in Sun Prairie, WI.  Ryan Davidsons Relay for Life Team page


I have started a few Relay for Life Teams here locally so that Ryan’s friends here in the Los Angeles area can come out and walk a lap or two in honor of our Trojan Brother.  If you are not in LA, or not in town, you can donate directly to Relay for Life at Ryan’s page above or to one of the Teams below.  We would really like to have some team members join us to walk, so please join us if you can.  Think of the lasting statement a group of us could make, walking for him and for all those of our friends and family touched by the insidious disease cancer, ENOUGH! We can do something, together.

Ryan Davidsons Team in LA - USC April 4-5, 2009

Ryan Davidson's Team In LA - Pasadena May 30-31

Ryan Davidson's Team in LA - Altadena June 6-7


Please Join us to Celebrate Ryan’s Life, Remember his Courage, Gifts and Service to us all, and join us to FIGHT BACK!

Thanks, I appreciate all your support and consideration to read this.

I hope to see you at one of these Relay events, thanks for all your support this past year.

Fight On!

PostScript Video below