Weekend Warriors…

While the last couple weeks have been a total snoozer, this past weekend proved to be quite an eventful one for all of us… I really didn’t have that many things planned because I was busy organizing a surprise birthday party, but everything sort of came together and produced a pretty memorable weekend. The weather here has been pretty strange lately but the sun was out long enough on Saturday where I actually had the opportunity to get some work done… As for the site itself, I apologize if there has been a lack of heavy consistent updates lately, but there just isn’t that much going on. In terms of automotive events, this month as well as the next will be few and far between. Everything will pick up in the summer time so I guess we can just chalk up this time as the proverbial “calm before the storm”. There are meets here and there and I will try to get out to cover some of them but I don’t always know about them until a day or so before and there are times when I already have regular life events planned but trust me, I will try my best to get out there… Now, onto what happened over the weekend….

It was May’s birthday this week so I really wanted to throw a surprise party for her. She’s thrown a couple for me in the past so I thought it would be cool to try to surprise her. I didn’t go in with high hopes because she tends to ask a high volume of questions for everything but I just decided to do what I could to surprise her. I just needed a couple of distractions here and there. She took a couple days off from work for her birthday as well which made things more difficult to organize but luckily I have some great friends who were willing to lend a helping hand. We went out to dinner a couple times on the nights leading up to the weekend, which we all hoped would lead her astray from thinking we had anything planned. I also had to take care of some stuff for work so it was good timing that the girls had to get together in the morning to go do their thing…

I woke up early in the morning to meet up with DPK David to shoot his EJ1 Civic coupe for a U.K.-based magazine (Total Honda) that I recently started to do work for. Many of you who are familiar with his coupe know that it’s been featured twice here in the states within the last 6 years or so, but I thought it would make a good feature vehicle for an overseas magazine. It’s a popular build here in the states but I feel that it is still mostly unknown outside of our borders. We’ve always talked about me doing the story on his build in the past, but things just never came together for that to happen. When his car was featured back in ’06 for Honda Tuning, I wasn’t even working in the industry yet and when it appeared in Import Tuner mag a couple years ago, I hadn’t started doing work for IT yet. I don’t feel that the U.K. has very many well-known K-swapped Hondas yet, especially coupes, so I thought that it would be cool to get David in there. I think a lot of people sleep on his build too because of the fact that it’s a coupe and not the more popular hatchback. In any case, the opportunity came up for me to finally man the feature for his build and I seized it. It’s cool of Total Honda U.K. to put their trust in my abilities to pick a good car and that’s why I like doing work for them. Hopefully their target audience enjoys the story. If not, it’s all good though because I would have shot the car just for fun anyways. He’s recently added a couple new things here and there and this current look is probably the best yet….


We got to the shoot location around 7am and the sun had just risen. Rodrez from Honda Tuning was also shooting at the same location not too far away from us as well so he stopped by to hang out for a bit after he finished. The weather was surprisingly pleasant compared to the last couple weekends I had shot out in L.A. so I wasn’t interrupted with constantly having to blow my runny nose… It took a couple hours but I was pretty happy with the overall results. After Rodrez took off to go home and take care of his baby, my buddy Jae Bueno randomly cruised by to say what’s up. Jae runs his own blog as well (www.jaebueno.com) where he does something similar to what I do here, but for the ever-popular Socal Lowrider community. Jae has been a fan of this site for quite some time, even though he isn’t a Honda head himself, and has always been very kind to me whenever we have run into each other at events. He also shoots for Lowrider magazine and he was down in L.A. that morning to shoot a car. He set-up down the way from us and after I finished shooting David’s coupe, we cruised over there to check it out…


We loaded-up my camera gear and drove a couple feet down to where Jae was. His wife was busy shooting the model alongside the Chevy pick-up and I chatted with Jae for a quick minute before he was called over to help. I asked if it was cool if I could grab some shots for the site and he obliged. The location was a perfect spot, I think, for the shoot but I don’t envy him having to shoot a build that had dark paint which mirrored everything around it. The curves of the truck also looked like it would be challenging since it would reflect everything around that area. On Saturdays it also tends to be busy because the adjacent businesses are still open, unlike Sundays when it’s a ghost town in the early mornings…. Click here if you want to see a larger version of the above photo….


I only stayed for a couple of minutes because I didn’t want to intrude but I remember Jae Bueno telling us that this model drove all the way out from New Mexico just for this shoot… With the way gas prices are, I would imagine it would have been better to fly but she didn’t want to miss out on the chance to be in Lowrider magazine so she hopped in her car and made the trek out to the mean streets of L.A. in her bikini, haha… Click here for a larger version of the above photo…

After saying bye to Jae Bueno and his wife, we decided to get out of the area and head back home. Rodrez had mentioned that there was an event going on that afternoon at one of the Source Interlink offices so I hopped on Facebook for some details. It wasn’t a heavily advertised event but it wasn’t too far away so I went. It was a small meet that Super Street and Import Tuner put together to coincide with the Formula D tech day that was going on down at the Irvine offices. There was an interesting mix of cars but it was a pretty small turn-out in comparison to most meets. They didn’t expect much from it anyway since there wasn’t much promotion behind it….


I’ll be perfectly honest, I don’t follow drifting much these days and I didn’t even know when Formula D was taking place, but it was interesting to see all the new drift builds popping-up. I am not even involved enough to know if drifting is even remotely as popular as it once was but apparently there is still a pretty strong following… I didn’t recognize any of the cars besides the Garage Boso S15 so I used that day as sort of a re-introduction into the drifting scene…


We stayed for maybe an hour or two and I managed to get a pretty solid batch of photos. I’ll post them up tomorrow when I finally get a chance to go through all of them but this is all you guys will see from that event today. The SC430 drift car is supposed to be a pretty big deal and from what I saw while I was there, this thing is pretty intense.  Just the custom fabrication alone was impressive. It didn’t matter that the car wasn’t finished and without a colorful graphical livery. We chatted with some people that were more familiar with the car and they said it was Achilles Tires newly-sponsored drift vehicle. I got more pics, but again, I’ll post them up tomorrow…

The girls coincidentally were in the same area as us so they drove by and met up. Rodrez and Tes also came by with baby Maddox…


This little guy is growing up so fast and will be the first Chronicles regular before he’s even spoken his first word, haha….

Most of us had woken up early in the morning so we parted ways to rest-up before the night’s festivities. Everything had come together pretty easily for May’s surprise birthday party so it was just a matter of getting to the restaurant that evening….


This photo was taken this past weekend but the owner of this Civic, Sam Ip-Nguyen, is the owner of the restaurant that we’d be having May’s party at. Sam is a great guy and was more than happy to host the surprise party for us. His girlfriend Linh also helped out and prepared everything from the food to the decorations for us so I basically had nothing to worry about. For those wondering, Sam’s restaurant is called Hoy’s Wok and it’s on Sunset Blvd. It’s a Chinese food spot and the food is great. He’s there 7 days a week as the main chef so I highly recommend going there if you like Chinese food. The guy knows how to cook and has great taste in cars. Support your fellow enthusiast and stop by when you guys get the chance. Peep the website for his restaurant here….


As usual, we got there a little late but it worked out since a couple others were also stuck in traffic on Sunset Blvd….When we got there, May was greeted with our usual car-friends as well as her old friends from high school. It’s rare to have everyone in the same place at the same time since both are completely different groups of friends but I was really happy to see everyone together…I don’t always throw surprise birthday parties, but when I do, apparently they are pretty successful, haha….


The birthday girl was all smiles as she cut her cake…


Random but May’s cake isn’t your traditional birthday cake because these cakes from “Nothing Bundt Cakes” are one of May’s favorites. I figured people aren’t always down to eat regular birthday cake anyway so why not just get something that May would eat even if it wasn’t her birthday. Nothing Bundt Cakes isn’t really close to my area but Rodrez and Tes came through in the end and picked it up for the party….


Hoy’s Wok isn’t that big but Sam reserved half of his restaurant just for us…There was probably about 25 of us when it was all said and done….Kind of hard to see everyone but guys like Ejay, Rywire Ryan, Supertwinz John, Parnell Navarro, Rodrez, Big Mike, Downstar Frank, and PG+K Jay where all there to celebrate….You can also see Rodrez sitting all the way in the back with Tes and the baby while DPK David was chillin’ against the wall…


Big thanks to everyone that came out…I really wanted to get a group shot of everyone that was there but there were a couple that had to leave a little early due to prior engagements… Here is most of the party outside of Sam’s restaurant….

After we departed from Hoy’s Wok, a couple of us met up down at Diddy Riese in Westwood to grab some of their famous ice cream sandwiches. It was pretty cold but the girls sure love their ice cream… Sunday was pretty uneventful for us since we knew there was a huge storm coming. We stayed in and just watched TV all day…but….

Meanwhile, at the DUB Show in Anaheim…


Holy shit…haha… Jae Bueno mentioned that there was a DUB event this weekend but I had no idea it was on Sunday. I jacked these photos from my FB buddy Jose Romo, who apparently decided to go check it out….When you think of the DUB show, you imagine seeing stuff like this…


I am unsure of what this is, but it was taken hours before the storm hit Anaheim, CA….


You would also expect to see stuff like this…which also actually happened at the DUB show that day…dogs standing on girls asses? Sure, why not, it’s the DUB show. There was probably a couple of fights that went on as well as a concert…but torrential downpour? Nooo…..


Shout-out to all the people that stuck around but fuuuuck, that shit looks horrible! Haha…I can’t even imagine standing in that and attempting to have a good time. Take a look at the pic two photos above again, that pile of blue mess was once a fold-up canopy! What a mess….


At least these guys looked like they were having a good time…Shit is coming down hard…You can even see the Chrysler 300C with the Camaro front-end I posted from Hot Import Nights not too long ago in the background, haha…. I was curious so I looked at some coverage online of the DUB event and they were dry for most of the day but damn, when that rain came down, it wiped out the whole show….Props to those that got through it…I’m all for rain or shine events but a lot of those builds that regularly attend DUB events aren’t ever meant to see water or spend a lot of time outdoors. I don’t know what steps they took to prevent their cars from getting hit with all this rain…Imagine Lowriders with 10K+ paint jobs with no tops and custom interiors…plus a rainstorm…yikes….

That’s a wrap for today. Life is good, I can’t complain…

Categories: Civics, Personal, RandomTags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Out of curiosity what kid of light set up and lens did you use for that DPK David shot? It’s extremely good!

    Huge fan of this site btw!

  2. Joey, great to see you and meet David on Saturday morning. Thanks for stopping by to say hi. Sorry I could not chat more, the “boss” needed my help! ;). Oh and I am a Honda head. I come from the Honda era of the late 80’s early 90’s scene. I used to have 90 Civic EX with a built motor and Racing Hart wheels before it was totaled in an accident. I’ll see if I can dig up a photo or two.

  3. I really like all the different scenes in one post! Very good write up! Will you be at WEKFEST LA?

  4. that sc430 is japanese d1 driver Daigo Saito’s FD competition car.
    probably be THE driver to watch in FormulaD..

  5. I didn’t know you knew Jae Bueno. Been following him for awhile over on layitlow. It’s good to see photographers from two different respective car cultures have an appreciation for each others automotive community.

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