los angeles

7 01 2009

First, a little comedy from DustFilms and the related story after.

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We lived in Los Angeles for a good part of the 80s to the early 90s and I’ve heard it all before, “L.A. is provincial”, “no personality”, “can’t hold a candle to NY” and so forth and so on.  The majority of my relatives seem to think so too (L.A.’s zzzzz) and recently, even Lourd of RSP cited the same thing to me and being that i know what he meant to a degree, i nodded in agreement though in hindsight, i shouldn’t have because i actually don’t think so.

Yes, i do agree and know how places like NY and London are two of the most, bustling cosmopolitan places in the world but to me, L.A ain’t bad at all, especially if you’re into “vintage” be it furniture, clothing, cars, toys…  y’know the whole lifestyle for members of the secret and not so secret club of liking something that’s unique and rare and unless you’ve lived in L.A. you really won’t know what an interesting, quirky playground it really is.

In fact, it’s THE hotbed if you ask me. Obviously they have thrift and vintage stores in NY etc but L.A. seems to be where its at when it comes to discovering interesting haunts and finds in my book. I did become a zombie the few times i went to Chicago for such adventures and it had its own vintage loving community and stores  but you have to understand, L.A. is HUGE and i’m not even referring to the neighboring counties yet but just Hollywood, Downtown, the Valley at that…

Places like Santa Monica,  Silverlake, old Pasadena etc. ,there’s just loads and loads of amazing places to go for odd treasures, good food, art deco buildings, mid century furniture, stores that sell vintage,vintage,vintage, swap meets, flea markets. Again, i know every place in the world may have their own community or sections but in L.A., vintage finds are amazingly still in ABUNDANCE. It’s hard to explain but you can be in Long Beach or Riverside or Altadena or Burbank and anywhere you go you’re bound to come across great second hand treasures, vintage artifacts and that’s part of the image and personality of L.A. that appeals to me.

It’s like i died and went to vintage heaven.

It also amusing when, say, you’re at the Rose Bowl or the Pasadena (PCC) Flea Market and you’re side by side with Diane Keaton or you’re at Canter’s and your table’s next to Rodney Bingenheimer or maybe lining up at Pink’s behind Harrison Ford.  I remember one afternoon after school, driving home down Sunset Blvd at a stoplight , looking at my rearview mirror, i find Richard Simmons in his car singing at the top of his lungs!  Another time i went crate digging around Topanga Canyon, Adam Sandler was just there on the sidewalk cafe next to the store i was in watching cars go by.  Well, it is the film capital obviously but when you experience it on a daily basis  It’s surreal and amazing all at once. That’s L.A. for you.

Fast forward to just a few days ago, i picked up this excellent book on Los Angeles entitled Vintage LA by Jennifer Brandt Taylor and it all came back to me, the sights,the sounds,the smells…and for someone who lived there for less than 10 years i must say, i’ve really gone around the City Of Angels as i know 90% of  the places, people, things and what’s in the book but nevertheless it’s a great book and im glad i bought it. The author’s 12 years younger than i am but lived all her life in L.A. and is definitely a kindred spirit.

If you’re into it(vintage and thrifting) as much as i am you’ll love it and if you think L.A.’s a boring place, it’s probably because you just go or were taken by your relatives to the Beverly Center, the Glendale Galleria or the dime a dozen mini mall complexes in your neck of the woods. That’s not what L.A. is all about and you don’t know what you’re missing.

I miss L.A.