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: Hip with wrinkles
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Feb 4th 2008
Okay...sorry. Couldn't eat the burger and type at the same time. Here's what you need to know.
First off, I'm a good person. I contributed some coin to KCRW (our NPR station) today. My soul has been cleansed. Guilt free, I can listen to all the radio personalities beg and cajole the listenership for bread and go "Yeah, what's wrong with you fucking people! They'll give you a T-shirt."
When I decided on burger tonight the usual quadrangle of choice popped to mind. We have the 101, Fred 62, Canter's, and Swingers for dining after 11p.m. There's a host of Denny's and such, but, really, this was an act of love. I wanted my burger to taste kind of like burger.
Canter's and Swingers are west of La Brea, kind of a hike, and are last ditch. Swingers has this gaudy loudness, bright orange walls, and this reverence for cows. It's not Hindu. You can eat them. It's just cow decorated and slightly annoying.
Canter's is the place where old servers go to die. Souls are sold in Hollywood for SAG cards and 5 line roles and when the vig comes due, the sellers work at Canter's.
My place nestles equidistant from Fred's and the 101. I tend towards Fred's, its mediocre product, and uncomfortable counter stools cause I know some of the waitresses from around. I fulfill two needs there. I eat junk food and flirtatious, 20 minute junk food relationships. They smile. I smile. We all go home happy.
But it was too fucking crowded and no one worth the wait was on. So, the 101.
See Swingers? The movie not the aforementioned diner. They filmed the last scene in the 101. Probably others, but it's been a long time. That movie epitomizes the Los Angeles experience from Los Feliz to Vine and Franklin. That's where the arty kids move. It's where those who believe they have something to say live. At least that's true when I got here and definitely in the time of Liman/Favreau.
Those of us who stayed and aren't making Iron Man remain cool and hip just with wrinkles. I noticed a new one on my eyelid this morning. Fuck.
So, I'm eating this, okay, but not great burger by myself in the booth as you know around midnight. The waitress and I have exchanged pleasantries and assurances, but around we don't know each other so it lacks flirtation.
A new couple sits in front of me. The smartphone held my attention so they escaped my notice. I detect an accent from the fella with the goofy, Abe Lincoln beard while he gives into the chocolate goodness exuding from my milkshake mere feet away. But meters to him.
Here's the thing about accents in LA, my neighborhood especially. BEWARE! This is still the capitol of reinvention and mental illness, so the psychotic you met on Craig's list may have just decided he's English.
I listen, chomping on my burger. My inner Anglophile tweaks when I hear things like "this guy called..." or "that would be lovely" and "cheers." He's continuous, unending. Whether the front of the back of the blonde head before me wanted to talk I don't know, but he wasn't allowing it. Perhaps, he thought it gentlemanly to do all the talking. Or, perhaps he decided that to survive this date he must. I've had those dates myself.
To be continued.
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