East Hollywood Blues

A Diary Of Life Among Millennials

Author: Buck (page 1 of 5)

The Man Bun Manifesto

I was sitting with 2 other bartenders of similar New York City vintage self exiled to East Hollywood and other Southland neighborhoods for reasons of weather appreciation in the Local drinking Tito’s Immaculate Conceptions .

Man Bun and A Line sat next to us getting more and more upset as we shared war stories about a New York that may or may not have existed except we seem to remember it rather vividly.

“So what’s her name Abzug comes in on the busiest night in December,”  Bob says.

“The one with the hat,” Jimmy asks.

“I think so.  It may have been the other one but does it really matter?  Political hacks are all the same.  Anyway, I think this is going to be a nightmare.  It’s me and 600 of my closest friends and I’m wondering how many times she’s going to send back the salmon this time.  But she doesn’t.  She tells me what she wants, I get it for her and she keeps telling this guy next to her who’s ordering one drink at a time for 15 people each round to hurry up I’m a busy man.”

“Political hacks are all the same,” Jimmy said laughing.

Before any of us can launch into another story where the names don’t have to be changed because everybody is guilty as hell, Man Bun and A Line push their chairs back.  As A Line marched to the door, Man Bun stopped and offered the 3 of us a this piece of advice: “You middle aged beer drinking, cis gendered men with your toxic masculinity need to throw your rape culture in the river.”  Then he walked out the door with A Line once more outraged and righteously indignant because of said outrage.

Jimmy, Bob and myself were a bit shocked at said manifesto and not quite sure what he meant.  However we were sure that rape Culture was a great unrecorded punk band we all saw at Brownies on Ave. A back in early 1991.

The Man Bun Comic

I have found the worst comic to have ever been glared at wide eyed and mouth agape on any East Hollywood stage and/or in the history of Western Civilization.  And that says a lot when you factor in all of the furiously unfunny vulgarians they had to find to open for Andrew Dice Clay.

In this case of brain rot run amok, said 34 year old comic with nerd glasses and long, aesthetic curly brownish blonde hair pulled back into a Man Bun, declared the placement of Jackie O’s eyes in her skull made her look fish like and then wished he could have been fucked up the ass by John Wilkes Booth. But he didn’t say it quite that way.  He wanted to be witty.  I believe the phrase was “John Wilkes Booth could come up behind me anytime.”

This puts me in the mind of Rodney Dangerfield.  I now understand why he snorted his foot powder.

#schmuck

PC Jew Hater

The latest Hip Hop tune came blaring over the box so loudly Jack the Albino almost spilled my Tito’s Immaculate Conception.

”Jesus, not another one of these fucking songs,” he said.

”Bitch.  Ho.  Cunt.  Bitch.  Ho.  Cunt,” I said eating one of the Green Pitted olives from the pick before dropping the other two back into the vodka.

”Wait.  What was that I I heard about the Jews,” Jack said.

I  tilted my head to listen.  “Did he say Kill the Jews,” I asked.

”It sounds like it,” Jack said, laughing.

”So now it’s Bitch.  Ho.  Cunt.  Kill the Jews,” I said.

“What did you say,” the skinny Hipster with a ginger beard and open plum patterned shirt revealing the edges of a Superman S tattoo asked threateningly.

”So now it’s Bitch.  Ho.  Cunt.  Kill the Jews,”

“You can’t say that,” he said.

“Would your prefer if I said Kill those who commit deicide, B word.  H word.  C word,” I asked.  Jack fell against the back bar laughing.

He unbuttoned his sleeve and revealed a forearm full of tattoos.  He pointed to a Star of David neatly inked onto his arm in the middle of what looked to be a jungle scene and a grouping of Marijuana plants.  I pulled out my reading glasses, held his arm up daintily from the tip of his middle finger.  “So, you are a Jew with tattoos.”

“Yes,” he said proudly.

“Do you understand how wrong that is,” I asked.

“Every Jew I know has tattoos like this.”

“So you’re all in the Aryan Brotherhood then,” I asked.

His paisley summer dress wearing girlfriend, who bore a weirdly striking resemblance to Raggedy Ann if she had been brought up wearing patchouli in Bel Air, decided now was the time to step in and end this charade.  “Baby let the Nazi be a hater.  Come on, let’s go.”

“I’m not a Nazi.  I”m a Jew.  Unless you think I’m a disciple of Jabotinsky,” I said.

“Do you know how many Poles killed Jews in Dachau in the 1960’s,” he screamed.

“You stop winding him up!  You are an evil Jew hater!  Baby let’s go,” she said.  With that, they stumbled out into the East Hollywood night.

Jack slammed down two shot glasses.  “Kill those who commit deicide, B word.  H word.  C word,” he asked.

“What can I say, I’m a PC Jew hater,” I replied.

Smoke Crack, It’s Classier

While waiting for the light to change near the Scientology HQ on Sunset, I found myself standing next to two Man Buns dressed in the requisite White V-Neck T-shirts, Tan Khaki’s and Brown Birkenstocks.  Although I tried to ignore their occasionally Dude and Pigeon Simile inflected patter,  I soon was drawn into the conversation, a conversation that sounded a lot like an intervention.

Man Bun 1: Dude you have stay away from the Meth.  It’s like killing you.

Man Bun 2: But everybody like uses Meth dude.

Man Bun 1: But you’re like shooting it and it’s killing you.

Man Bun 2: Do you want me to snort it dude?

Man Bun 1: Dude you have to stay away from the Meth.  It’s killing you.

Man Bun 2: Ok dude, I’ll like switch to Crack.

Man Bun 1: Seriously?

Man Bun 2: Seriously dude no joke.  I mean it.  I’ll switch to Crack.

Man Bun 1: Thanks dude.  It’s classier.

Somewhere Frank Sinatra is calling Momo Giancana to order a hit.

 

 

The Lost Art Of Being A Puller

A very cute curly haired  25 year old brunette in a brown velvet skirt, black sweater and dark red  Raggedy Ann shoes was talking to a 26 year old boy, totally tatted up from his head to his toes while he lamented being unable to find work.  She was listening and trying to look concerned but she wasn’t – she had a quota to keep.  You see the very cute curly haired 25 year old brunette was a puller for Scientology.

Guy: I’m having problems finding a job.

Girl: If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?

Guy: All my tatts.

Girl: NO!  I love your tatts.  They are so sexy.

Guy: But I think they keep me from finding a job.

Girl: NO!  You are so hot in those tats.  You can’t find a job because your Preclear.

Millennial flirtation Scientology style.

 

The DIY Movement Lives On In East Hollywood

Whilst walking to an appointment through this eve I had the pleasure of catching up with Bex, a dear old friend from the days of New York past now living in Seattle.

Our conversation turned to our time in the City and the various reasons we left. I told her about the drag show on 20th Street in the Flatiron district I attended a few times in ’09 and how boring it was, not the Warhol style performers we adored back in the day but performers who looked like they used to be the same friendly women who were really friendly men dressed like friendly women and prowled the Meat Packing District back when we were young bohemians – only this time the Irish barman was their tout and pimp. I took this as proof positive my New York was gone.

As I stopped at a street light, the guy next to me tapped my arm. “The guy is talking to you,” he said pointing to a gender indeterminate individual sitting at a card table covered with detritus.

The gender indeterminate individual was covered with a coarse gray blanket, a white Arab style headdress and a red cloth covering his/her mouth. He/she was also spraying something in my general direction from a distance of about 70-80 feet.

“Yeah,” I asked. “Whadda you want?”

“You called me a faggot,” he/she said, spraying his unnamed fluid in my direction.

“Ah, ” I said turning my back to he/she who obviously hadn’t received the memo that the new denizens of in the rapidly gentrifying, Hipster/Millennial scarred ‘hood known as East Hollywood now refer to said noun as ‘the F word.’

“What are you spraying at him,” the guy who tapped me on the arm asked.

“Pepper spray,” he/she replied.

“How come I can’t smell the CS gas,” I yelled over my shoulder.

“I made this myself from pepper and hairspray,” he/she said.

The DIY Movement lives!

Raving At All Kyle Karaoke

The dream I’ve been having always starts the same with Mr. Guilmet giving us our IGI’s (Identify and Give the Importance) for the big test on The Black Hand and ends with him and Mr. C is his matching socks and sweater yelling at me “It’s all about Vietnamization.”  I sit straight up in a cold sweat screaming ‘Wha’ trying to catch my breath.  How the failure of a Nixonian foreign policy concept was caused by Gavrilo Princip  on June 28,1914 is beyond me but Tom Waits was right about places like this: you take on the dreams of the ones who slept here and it seems those before me failed Modern European History in high school.

So I end up wandering the upper regions of the ‘hood looking wishing the OD were around instead of in the County lock up because his latest ex found him at the local Laundromat, and finally make my way over to the Original Retro Goose, the closest gin joint to the East Hollywood Travelodge where all the “Fabulous Cocktails” have names that sound like the burned out strippers from Jumbo’s Clown Room.  Of course, they also have karaoke; lots and lots of karaoke.  Karaoke 7 nights a week frequented by every knucklehead in the neighborhood.

I poke my head in the door gingerly hoping to avoid some Hipster butchering ‘More Than This’ which makes me want to challenge the guy to a game of Russian Roulette with him going first and the pistol completely loaded.  Things looked safe.  Joe the Barman was on his third double Tito’s Madras of the night as a 34 year old Hipster in an orange stocking cap led the rest of the bar through a teary eyed rendition of ‘These Boots Are Made or Walking.’  Before I could make a discreet exit Joe motioned me to sit next to him, pulled out a Martini glass with three olives inside, a Boston shaker full of ice, a strainer and put the Tito’s bottle on the bar between us.  My ennui and nightmares had helped me stumble on All Kyle Karaoke.

All Kyle Karaoke is a group of 12 Hipsters, all named Kyle dressed in the same flannel shirt because Kurt Cobain chic is back in beard and glasses, get together to murder their favorite songs in a way that would make Mrs. Miller proud.  Neither Joe, the MC nor myself know which Kyle will walk up, don the orange toque and claim his chanteuse infamy.  As I poured my Immaculate Conception, the the Nancy Sinatra but sounding far more like Crispin Glover wanna be finished to a smattering of applause and Kyle was called up to warble ‘Because‘ by the Beatles.  He lost his mind after the first line.

“Because the world is round it turns me on…no!  NO!  The world isn’t round it’s flat. Earth is a disc with the Arctic Circle in the center and Antarctica, a 150-foot-tall wall of ice, around the rim. NASA employees guard the ice wall so people can’t climb over and falling off.”

“What about the sun rising and setting,” Joe the Barman asked.

“The have big planes that move the sun and moon 3,000 feet up,” Kyle replied.

“What about the stars,” Joe asked.

“They’re on a plane 100 feet above the sun and moon.”  With that Kyle broke down and started crying.  “They’re old and don’t get it.  I read all about it in the HufPo!”

The MC stepped in to smooth over the situation.  “Let’s try to shy away from controversy gentlemen.  We’re all friends here regardless of whether we believe in the Reptile People but should.  Ok.  Up next we have Kyle with ‘Put ‘Em On The Glass.‘”

Suddenly I found myself in mind of the Once and Future ex who always claimed my small but slowly growing bald spot was due to Chemtrails.

Hector Is A Proper Noun and A Verb

My building is being painted.

So the painters, who arrive at 7:58 am and have a key to everything except the deadbolt, are unable to open my door because I lock the deadbolt behind me all the time when I’m in the house asleep like a good New Yorker does.  Their remedy for said situation knowing I’m home is to drill out the deadbolt.   It seems knocking is a lost art form in Los Angeles but destroying a perfectly good door costing my landlord hundreds of dollars and sending me to a cheap hotel.

The Travelodge in East Hollywood is an effective place to feel wretched with summer wheat painted walls and beige just to this side of white of linoleum tiles separated by dirty grey grout.  The Frat fridge doesn’t work, the microwave is really a 1981 Convection oven and there is no deadbolt.  The Meth freak who occupied the room several guests before me ripped it out of the wall in a fit of political pique when the Chester A. Arthur refused to have brunch with him.   Three doors down, the locals who claim to have killed Geri Rosenthal are screaming about aliens coming through the Flat Screen TV’s via Pardon the Interruption.

As I wait for the elevator, a late twenty something couple who judging from their accent are from the Upper Midwest and ignored whatever advice they received on Hotels.com to avoid this place, cower as the disembodied voice behind the brown door that separates room 225 from the hallway screams “Hector!  Hector!  I’ll chase you around the bed until I catch you!  Hector!  Hector!”   These screams are followed by crashes of ceramic plates and the breaking of glass.

“Hector sounds scary,” the female end of the Late Twenty Something Couple from the Upper Midwest in Lisa Loeb glasses said.

“Just like the one who was in that bad ass film Troy that took place in Athens,”  The male end of the Late Twenty Something Couple from the Upper Midwest in an ironic strawberry beard said.

“The one who was killed by Bob Pitt,” the female end of the Late Twenty Something Couple from the Upper Midwest in Lisa Loeb glasses said.

“The very one.  They named him after that tendon in in your knee,” The male end of the Late Twenty Something Couple from the Upper Midwest in an ironic strawberry beard said.

I am forced to conclude discussing the word Hector as a proper noun as well as a verb would be pointless.

 

They’re So Cute

The Red Line was remarkably calm today.

It was as if the Moving Carnival that is the Los Angeles Subway needed a day for rest and rehab just like when I had the Influenza of the moment a few weeks back that has laid more people low than the H1N1 panic of 2009 or the Spanish flu if you are in the overblown media frame of mind.

As we pulled into the Vermont/Santa Monica Station I noticed a late 20 something couple sitting on the orange and yellow colored seats, wearing the same Blue Jean jacket, white shoes and black jeans with identical holes in each knee, playing a game on identical Samsung Galaxy smart phones in identical cases.

I suddenly flash on my grandparents in 1977 wearing the same rust colored beige pant suits and my mother saying how cute they looked, which is what the Lady with the Shopping cart sitting next to them is saying loudly to anyone who will listen.  Then as we pulled out of the station, the Young Dressed the Same couple put down their phones and wordlessly started to play  Patty Cake.

Although taken aback by this course of events, I am still in the frame of mind to think deeply about my grandparents, picturing them discussing their daily wear together as they stood in front of their closet mirror not by sending texts from across the room.  Although now  I wonder if they preferred Cat’s Cradle.

Sovereignty Is A Porn Star Name

I found myself sitting next to two lovely 23 year old ladies on the train this morning dressed in their skinny jean best with matching black boots that would make Eddie Egan drool.  They were going to the latest I’m Enraged At Something protests downtown.

“Do you like my sign,” the one closest to me dressed in enough thermal wear to make you believe it was below zero outside instead of a 68 degree balmy day in So Cal  asked.

Said sign read Illegals are human beings too.

“It’s very nice,” I said, flashing on an old story told to me long ago by a teacher at NYU about a Hippie who had a generic sign that read “I’m Outraged!” From 1967-1969 he missed nary a protest and met many women which may have been the impetus to go to these things in the first place until the cleaving of the decade when all the people at the protests stopped talking to him because he was at everyone with the same sign.  They thought he worked for the FBI.  Somewhere, Terry Southern is laughing his ass off.

“Do you agree with it,” she demanded, breaking my reverie shoving said sign over the page of the book I was pretending to read.

“Yes and no. I have empathy for the plight of the illegals but you have to understand immigration laws were designed to protect our sovereignty,” I explained.

She and her friend stood up as the train pulled into the Wilshire/Vermont station.

“How dare you call me by a porn star name,” she said. They exited the train discussing how creepy I was.

So much for my firm belief in the Rule of Law, I thought.

Quick note to self: find out if there is a porn star using sovereignty as a name.

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