Thursday, June 16, 2005

A Bunch of Debunking (L.A. Part 3)

There are some things that you simply assume about L.A. Some turn out to be very true, while others turn out wrong wrong wrong. Then some new things present themselves to you , and you have to deal with them if you want to or not.

1. The weather is always beautiful. Undoubtedly true. I visited during peak "June Gloom," a period of time - which happens, amazingly enough, during June - when the skies tend to be cloudy in the morning.

I have no idea why this is seen as bad weather. There was no rain, it was just cloudy for a few hours. The highs were in the mid to high 70's and in the evening temps dropped down to the low 60's. Humidity was always low. When God returns to earth he'll vacation in L.A. on the 7th day.

2. Everyone is skinny and beautiful. I did notice a frighteningly high number of really skinny women, of course, you don't need to go to L.A. for that, just watch the MTV Movie Awards. And for sure there are a lot of really attractive people there.

But not everyone is uber-attractive, and I didn't notice a startlingly high percentage of beautiful people. No higher than in, say, New York City (though they were considerably less pasty.) Consider that one debunked.

3. People are rude. I don't know where I got this one, I think it is because people always compare San Francisco with L.A. and talk about how much more uptight and rude people are in L.A.

This simply is not the case. Everyone we talked to or met - from people on the street to people working in stores - couldn't have been nicer. I think it may stem from the fact that you never really know who you are talking to in L.A., or who they know. And since there is one industry that dominates employment in the city (psst: entertainment) you can't afford to piss anyone off.

And there is still a definite West-Coast vibe in L.A. Even with all the traffic - and there is a shit-ton of it - I didn't hear many people honking horns or making crazy lane changes. It's almost as if drivers are resigned to their fate and take it in stride.

4. The Hollywood Tower is haunted. OK, this isn't really the first thing that comes to mind when you think of L.A., but I couldn't help but mention it. Many Disney themeparks feature the Twilight Zone Tower Of Terror ride.

That ride - or the house it's based on - is in L.A., it actually creepily overlooks my sister's place. Every time we'd walk up the hill to the apartment, there it was, HOLLYWOOD TOWER, staring at us. Freaky. Even the neon sign in Disney looks just like the real thing.

But, no matter how much web-searching we did, we couldn't find any information on how the Tower got such a bad reputation. It's easy to find the story of the ride... elevator plunging thirteen stories, actors died and bodies never found ... blah blah blah ... but the real Hollywood Tower isn't even 13 stories tall. Did anything ever happen here?

5. Sorting Clothes for the Lazy. There are some great used clothing stores in L.A. We visited one on Hollywood Boulevard and others on Melrose (Melrose, FYI, excellent shopping.).

But in each and every one of these stores all the clothes are separated into type - women's, men's, pants, shirts - and then separated by ... color. Color?! I know there are a vast number of skinny-minnie people living in L.A., but some of us like to look for our size first and then see if they have something we like. Especially when everything is one of a kind.

Thank God my sister was on the lookout for stuff for me. I didn't have the patience to go through everything just looking for my size. Annoying.

Next: A bit more.


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