LA Confidential



Anne and I had lunch today with Dan. We all walked over to Manhattan Café in Clayton. I felt the need to get some exercise and couldn’t quite steel myself to go biking today. Even so, it was a cold walk, with a bitter wind. I wished that I had my long undies on. I kept seeing the same guy grinding out miles, by riding up and down Wydown. I admired his perseverance, but I didn’t envy him how frozen he must have felt. A jogger died in Clayton, a few weeks back, when he fell and couldn’t get up. He died of hypothermia.

Manhattan styles itself as a fifties diner. I don’t know what possible connection it might have to its namesake bough in New York. It has always struck me as looking more like something out of the set of Happy Days, than anything from NYC. Lunch with Dan usually involves letting Dan do most of the talking. This luncheon was no different.

Maybe it was the restaurant’s name, but somehow we got on the subject of NoHo and WeHo. In the vernacular that would be north Hollywood and West Hollywood respectively. These are different LA art districts and / or trendy neighborhoods in and about the Hollywood portion of greater LA. Dan’s mentioning of them must have stuck in my mind, because of their phonetic similarity to Manhattan’s Soho district.

Dan was telling us about a video game that he likes called LA Noire. It is produced by the same people who brought us Grand Theft Auto. Noire is a police procedural set in the late forties and in this game one plays a policeman and not a hooligan. The amount of mayhem tolerated in the game is significantly reduced, but since one plays a LA policeman it is certainly not eliminated. Both games are set in LA, but while Grand Theft plays fast and loose with the LA street pattern, Noire is much more accurate. Dan likes to “drive” down his street, even if only the building kiddy-corner to his is in the game. All the rest in the intersection, including his were built much later than the forties.

Dan’s work at Otis College of Art and Design is all about fashion. The library that he works in is mainly devoted to the college’s fashion department. It seems that his day-to-day activities have less to do with working as a librarian than with creating fashion displays for the department. Earlier this year, I had seen on his Facebook feed pictures of a lingerie display that he had worked on. The school does a lot of corporate sponsored displays. He has worked on a display for Mattel that sounded like Barbie and some sort of post apocalyptic display for Eddie Bauer. Hey a guy has got to look good, even at the end of the world.

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