It’s a slow day in LA. Lindsay Lohan had a screaming fit with her mother in a limo and was yelling that Mom was on cocaine. Ho hum. I know this is the time of the year when people start planning their holiday vacations and if Los Angeles is among your destinations, here are a few things to see and do.
Walk along Sunset Blvd at night close to the curb. You never know which star is going to hit you with their car. You might get Halle Berry’s autograph and insurance information. Same with January Jones... assuming she doesn't hit you and flee.
If you want to see celebrities go to Vicente market in Brentwood. Okay, it may be fired local news anchor Paul Moyer but it’s a name.
Go to Phillippe’s French Dip sandwich place downtown. Great atmosphere. You might be standing in line with the mayor, a homeless guy, and a rock star. Not sure if they do it anymore but Phillippe’s used to be the weekly hangout for former circus clowns. The Nate N’ Al’s for bozos.
Have an Umami Burger. It’s all the rage. I have no idea why. You’d think there was cocaine in it. Lindsay Lohan's mom swears by them.
Visit the Grove. This is Disneyland without rides. An outdoor shopping mall that looks like Main Street USA. LA’s version of an urban neighborhood – Cute by half facades and an Apple Store. Also, plan your trip around my book signing at the Barnes & Noble at the Grove on October 29 from 7-9 pm.
Bobs Big Boy in Toluca Lake takes you back to the fabulous 50’s, when there was car service, double-deck hamburgers, thick milk shakes in silver goblets, and the greasers from high school who stuffed you in a toilet are there to terrorize you again.
See a Laker game at the Staples Center. Oh wait. You'll never get tickets. Go to a Clippers game. They're more fun anyway.
Ride the Metro. LA has a great subway system. But don’t ask an Angelino for directions to a station. No resident of the city has ever heard of the Metro.
For you culture vultures, there’s the Getty Museum and the Fredericks of Hollywood Museum of Bras.
Go to Mann’s Chinese Theater and see if your feet fit into the footprints of big stars like Marilyn Monroe or Trigger.
While in Hollywood, fall by Amoeba records. It’s the largest, greatest, most comprehensive record store you’ll ever see. And the staff of scary, tattooed, pierced, spiked hair freaks with chains dangling from every orifice are all courteous and knowledgeable.
And then there’s Chinatown, Jake. Of course there’s a Chinatown in every town.
For souvenirs and gifts for those folks back home, swing by Melrose Ave. and check out the fine selection at Condom-nation.
Sight-seers, there’s always the La Brea Tar Pits. Big black pools surrounded by chain linked fences. It’s amazing to think that way back millions of years in prehistoric days dinosaurs fell into those pits and constructed those fences.
Get a Map of the Stars Homes. Who knows? You might get lucky and see Ronald Coleman coming out to get the paper, or Lucille Ball throwing out Desi.
Unfortunately, LA’s top tourist attraction, the Lever Brothers Soap Factory has closed. The tour of the lye vats was not to be missed.
Don’t forget the Griffith Park Observatory where they filmed classic scenes from REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE. True story: the observatory was named for wealthy tycoon Colonel Griffith J. Griffith, who donated the land. In perfect Hollywood Babylon fashion, he once served jail time for getting drunk one night and shooting his wife, convinced she was conspiring with the pope to murder him.
Which reminds me, see Phil Spector’s house too.