It has occurred to me Los Angeles might be faltering. I’m not referring to the folding- before-the-flop Lakers, the ice-is-for-cocktails Kings, or even the most recent Oscars where the year’s top films resembled something one might find in a college undergrad exhibition.
Surely, the cultural velocity of this city rivals such stellar ports of ethos as New York City and Shanghai, albeit with a self-evident malaise stemming from injected lips, botoxed foreheads and the frequently updated breast implants one finds on the upper class housewives whose penchant for low-cut sundresses is exceeded only by their absent husbands’ desire to blare Whitesnake – circa 1987 – music from topless red Ferrari’s while tilting their well-greased and over-dyed heads towards the setting sun and making sure the twenty-something females wandering PCH are aware that a quick roll in the 8500 Sq. ft. hayloft/beachhouse is only a passenger-door-opening away, as it were.
Eeriness, however, knows no economic borders. To wit: today I watched a post-pubescent male shoot a hole through his earlobe with a needle large enough to slay a small moose and stretch his skin the way one might see a baker working with pretzel dough, all the while choking back tears and making such a racket of blended vowel sounds that your average primate would have been sent into a frenzied sexual state, not to mention the eighty-four year old lisping pervert who peered around the corner wondering whether something lewd and Viagra-necessitating was going on behind the wall.
Or worse, the wanna-be writer/actor/forty-seven year-old waiter who’s been “in the business” for the last twenty-five years and whose acting reel consists of a stint on Friends (he played an extra and appeared on camera for two seconds, although it was really only his middle finger touching an elevator button, and if pressed on the issue, he lifts the expertly-trained finger and allows it to present a rather ungracious and vile two-word speech) along with a principal role in a “hair color for men” commercial which ran sixteen times and netted him annual residual checks somewhere in the neighborhood of today’s gas prices. Plus, the metallic-blue thong wielding chap with the overaggressive pink hair, who struts about Melrose Ave. in high heels and whispers seductive innuendos to all passers-by.
Still, maybe L.A. does have its benefits. After all, it’s fairly easy to “accidentally” slam into a paparazzi member with your SUV’s front end, and should you ever feel shame in your arrogance, there will always be plenty of folks to show you how inept you truly are at showing it. Oh, plus the weather doesn’t suck, mostly.