I Live in Los Angeles

3 Feb

That's my city!

source

(Sometimes, when I’m driving on the 2 and see the sun setting behind the city, I can’t believe I live in Los Angeles. [along with 4 million other people!] It’s surreal.)

Lately, my LA life has been going a million miles an hour.

I’m very happy to announce that earlier in January my husband was offered a position at DreamWorks Animation Studios, where he had previously worked before getting laid off. This time, however, he’s an assistant artist, which means he’s doing ridiculously cool things, like spending his afternoon drawing with super legit people. Obviously, I’m jealous, but my stick figures look like mentally handicapped people, so I know a job in the creative realm is out of the question. Thankfully, my husband is contractually locked in until 2013, which is a huge relief to us after we were both unemployed for a time.

A lot of January was filled with celebrating, as you can imagine. We also awoke from hibernation, and finally crawled out of our little home and got around to exploring some of prettier parts of the Los Angeles area, which, according to Travel & Leisure Magazine, is the rudest city in the United States. (Personally, the people I have met are nothing but nice—however, the drivers here are TERRIFYING.) Thankfully, the annual Urban Mobility Report from the Texas Transportation Institute reports that traffic in the LA area isn’t the worst in the U.S. anymore, which is great.

Awesome.

The first place we visited was the Griffith Observatory. I was anxious to go for a few reasons. I had heard the views of Los Angeles were incredible, that you could see the Hollywood sign which I hadn’t really seen, and I was desperate to go to the Leonard Nimoy Event Horizon Theater there, because I am a gigantic nerd. The Observatory was wonderful. It was a beautiful sunny day, and it was actually relatively smog-free. The views were fabulous, and reminded me that I actually live really close to the ocean now (it’s easy to forget in the concrete jungle). I was disappointed to find that a huge cell phone tower is atop the hill the Hollywood sign resides against (and almost ruins it), but it was great nonetheless to see such an iconic LA landmark. While we didn’t star gaze, since it was daytime, the exhibits and city views definitely made the trip worth it, even if we had to park what felt like 10 miles away to get to the Observatory. I can’t wait to take my space-loving dad when he visits!

We then trekked over to Hollywood. We first visited the legitimacy that is Gallery 1988 to see the exhibit, “Is This Thing On?” featuring art inspired by popular comedians. I can’t express how much we loved the gallery! How can you not love a place that displays art like little stuffed Brets and Jemanines from “Flight of the Conchords” or a piece that highlights the greatest cinematic glory of our time—the fight scene in “Anchorman”?! Love love love. Then, we went to the Hollywood strip to see the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Without a map, I was excited that we stumbled upon the stars for Harrison Ford, William Shatner, and Godzilla (me=nerd, remember?). I had no idea that stars weren’t just for movies—did you know stars are also given in the categories of television, music, broadcast radio, and live theater? It felt a little bit like Vegas, but without people trying to shove porno business cards in my hand. I also saw the Kodak Theatre, which to be honest was a little disappointing. They do a good job during the Academy Awards broadcast of not highlighting the nearby area, so I was surprised to see the Theatre was next to a giant Gap, among other stores. So not what I expected. I’m halfway tempted this year to camp out by the Theatre and watch the stars arrive for the Oscars, but my husband pointed out that then I wouldn’t be able to actually watch the broadcast, so I doubt I will attempt such a feat.

On our next outing, we went to Venice Beach. It had been several years since I had visited, and two things jumped right out at me that had changed: the plethora of medical marijuana dispensaries and the abundance of really weird art that featured Marilyn Monroe as a gangster. (Note: Anyone who thinks that marijuana isn’t legal should definitely visit Venice Beach. I have news for you. It basically is.) We walked the entire Ocean Front Walk, enjoying our lemonade in the hot sun while refusing about 10,000 people asking us if we wanted to see a “doctor” to get a medical marijuana license. We skipped over to Intelligentsia’s Venice Coffeebar, where I proceeded to trip down a stair, spilling my expensive cappuccino in front of bored hipsters, solidifying my lameness and the fact that I have no business being at such a trendy place. After my embarrassment, we checked out the “Multiplayer” exhibit at the other Gallery 1988. I don’t play a lot of video games, so many of the references went over my head, but I was excited to see a few pieces that featured Mario, Sonic, and the original “Tron”, which I had recently seen and loved. (How can you not instantly love a movie that looks like one long Fry’s commercial?!)

Sunset.

Santa Monica was next. My favorite part of this leg of our tour was watching a street performing sing “Colors of the Wind” from Disney’s completely inaccurate “Pocahontas.” Mostly, we walked around, which was nice, and when the sun began to set, we went to the pier. Though everyone in the group was afraid of heights, we toyed with the idea of riding the Ferris wheel, but opted not to. Our day as tourists came to a close with a treat from Vanilla Bake Shop, which is how I feel every day should end.

More and more, as I begin to depend on my Garmin less, I realize I’m starting to put down some roots in Los Angeles, and surprisingly, it is alright with me.

(How about those Clippers?!)

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One Response to “I Live in Los Angeles”

  1. The Suze February 8, 2011 at 7:35 PM #

    Sounds like you’re home sweet home.

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