Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Miscel-LA-neous Photos from Saturday

As reported below/previously, I was in my former home base (1985-1997) of Los Angeles over the weekend, and on Saturday, riding shotgun with my brother, then my sister, I was El Touristo in the car, snapping pictures left and right, of blog-possible sights. They may or not be worthy, but they encapsulate my state of mind on the way to Pink's, at Pink's, and after Pink's. You could say it was Pinky on the Brain, but it's a beautiful city, in its mad L.A. way.

Saturday was a cold, sunny day. Cold for Southern California, but the sun still blazed warm. Above, the sun is just beginning to dip in the West, as we head East on the Santa Monica Freeway (aka "The 10"). The photo doesn't show it well enough, but out beyond downtown, we could see the San Gabriel Mountains and the snow-capped top of Mt. Baldy.

Below, also on the 10, I see that California DMV has loosened its liscence plate restrictions:

Earlier on La Brea, I saw this cool bookstore name:

More info on IL Literature here.

Below, not a great shot, but an eclectic junk/chair yard. I thought the yellow hand chair was cool, especially in proximity to the Pacifico beer cooler.

There once was (and still may be) a very popular lecture at Occidental College called "L.A. the Magnificent" given by Professor Robert Winter (see his books here). He loves L.A. architecture. Yet he bemoaned the absurdity that often befell great buildings in a city as transient and ever-changing as L.A. I think this following example might get his goat. I thought I had recognized it immediately, as the old May Company building at the corner of La Brea and Wilshire. Further research showed I had misidentified it, but I did unearth this trivia about the Glen-Wilson Building, at 5225 Wilshire Boulevard:

Designed by Meyer and Holler (of Grauman's Chinese and Egyptian Theatre fame), the Streamline Moderne and ZigZag tower is the tallest of the three 1920s high-rises on the Miracle Mile. It used to feature a dirigible mast soaring from the top, but Mutual of Omaha removed the mast when the insurer owned the building — costing it eligibility for the National Register of Historic Places.

It was completed in 1929 and is thirteen stories tall. Current tenants include Jack Slomovitz Photographs, Core Pilates,
and the offices of Mr. Mudd, the company that produced the film, Ghost World. Also notable is Sheila Kelly's S. Factor L.A. Studio, where an introductory class in S. Factor striptease workout and pole dancing is only $40.

But I digress. So what has become of this 78-year old Art Deco classic? Look and weep:

Yes, it has been topped with a hideous Samsung billboard. Brilliant advertising placement = architectural rape. That's okay, we all know the tops of Art Deco buildings are boring anyway.

Now let me climb down off of my soapbox and end with one final shot, taken from the line at Pink's. Seth gets credit for spotting the sign, I get credit for framing the photo with an added bonus:

Closer inspection leads to puzzlement:

What does that mean? You get free pupus when you purchase your poppies? Half-price well drinks when you drink from buttercups?

But the piece-de-resistance for me was the guy in line ahead of us, at the bottom of the frame. You can't see his cool Green Lantern t-shirt, but you can admire the biggest, bushiest sideburns this side of 1975:

Well, that's that. Back to NYC and single digit wind chills (Winter's finally here. Or is it?)


Jill said...

I never thought I'd say it with so much feeling, but I really, really miss California! Thanks for the memories.

Mellomouth said...

yeah - I miss it too (but just a little) - and not when its snowing where we used to live. Can you believe it? In Santa Clarita?Wonder how many people were at the mall today - huh Jill? I'd say I get enough snow here - but...

Jill said...

Hey Mel! Even Malibu has more snow that we do. Can you believe that?? I'm sure the mall (which, by the way looks NOTHING like it used to) was packed today, yesterday, everyday. Ah, malls! Now that, I don't miss! Except for maybe, just maybe David Sutera. Remember him?!?

mellomouth said...

ah - yes - Valencia Shopping Center - famous for many a movie. A friend of mine still works there - or is it works there again.
ANd... David yes I remember him. Didn't he break one of my margarita glasses just months after Bill and I got married???

Jill said...

I think he did! He was so innocent. I think he moved back to his home town. I lost touch with him when I moved to Santa Barbara. Too bad. He may have been the last really nice guy I dated.