Tuesday, December 02, 2014
A couple of days ago I drove over Beverly Glen. This is a local canyon that separates West Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. I use it frequently. Anything to stay off the 405 Freeway. When I had my play at the Falcon Theatre I took Beverly Glen every day for two months. My car could negotiate the turns on its own.
I usually had the radio on so was listening to music or a ballgame. Traffic was sometimes slow but it generally moved. And it was always faster than the 405, even when I was behind a garbage truck or a meteor landed on the road.
This time over Beverly Glen I also had a letter to mail so I kept my eyes open for a mailbox. In so doing I found myself really paying attention to my surroundings.
And it was like a completely different experience. For the first time I noticed….
One guy has a boat in front of his place.
Another has a vintage 65 Mustang.
Some of the trees have turned colors and are New England-like.
There are lot more houses for sale on the east side of the street than the west.
Hippies still exist.
Someone was throwing out a couch or maybe a person. There was a guy sitting on the couch.
One nimrod has planted cactus.
There are speed limits on some of the turns.
A few have white houses with bright red or blue front doors. They must get Jehovah’s Witnesses constantly.
One homeowner still had his "Vote for Shriver" sign in the front lawn. Do they know up there that the election is over?
I hope that was a dog and not a wolf. I was just relieved there wasn't a baby in its mouth.
There’s a new repaved section without lines yet. Is it okay to pass?
Homemade lemonade stands do shitty business on busy canyon roads.
The point is I observed so many more things than usual simply by paying attention. How much of the rest of the world around me am I missing by grooving along with Queen and obsessing over that joke I just can’t seem to make work? It’s one thing to stop and smell the roses; it’s another to recognize there are roses there.
I hope to build on this and be more observant in the future. There’s a lot more to see than I’m seeing. Unfortunately, I think within a few days I’ll slip right back into my old ways. But it’s worth making the effort once in awhile. That’s all I’m sayin’.
And no, I never found a mailbox.
By Ken Levine at 6:00 AM