by Sherise Dorf
Yes, Los Angeles gets a bad rap for being a one-industry town where no one
actually works, eats or walks. But if you can get past that, and the fact that
your 21-year-old neighbors wear hot pants and go-go boots, you can enjoy all
that it does have to offer. And whether youre solo or with significant
other, be advised that none of the following activities require you to show
up with brushed hair or closed-toed shoes.
How to spend a day in L.A.?
1. Caffeinate. Other cities boast coffee bars, sure, but L.A. offers
a variety of places besides Starbucks to load up on caffeine or nonfat
chai soy lattes while reading the trades or the latest draft of your
ahem spec. In the morning (and pretty much all day long) Farmer's
Market draws would-be actors and writers as well as the working ones, and
its a good spot to remember that there do exist Angelenos over the age
2. Rid yourself of toxins. Yeah, I know, sweating in the smog doesnt
sound like the best way to get your exercise. But hey, when in L.A., do as the
locals do. Take a hike up Runyon
Canyon (at the end of Vista Street, past Hollywood Boulevard). If you want
to make friends, bring a dog and be sure to lose track of it. That way, you
can attract a lot of attention and sympathy by screaming your dogs name
really loudly in everyones ears, and if youre lucky, someone cute
will help you find your pet. If youve got any tattoos, youll want
to expose them here. As a friend recently noted, "there sure are a lot
of tattoos up here." This is a one-mile hike pretty much straight uphill,
so dont bring any would-be boyfriends up here unless youre matched,
uh, cardiovascularly. Look around once you get to the top (before you collapse
on the solitary bench, muttering, "this is so weird, my trainer says Im
in really good shape") and see views of the Hollywood sign, downtown, and
even Santa Monica. On a clear day, damn it, you can see forever.
3. People watch. But first, congratulate yourself on all youve
accomplished so far. No slouch, you! Urth
Caffé is the kind of place where everyones dressed like you
in your fabulous workout wear
or otherwise, in much less. While watching
various model-types park their Porsches and SUVs out front, ask yourself
this: If youve got a belly button, why wouldnt you flaunt it? Most
recent celeb spotted was Tori Spelling sans make-up. The best way to distract
yourself when noting that a famous person is in the vicinity is to plunge enthusiastically
into your mixed-leaf side salad.
4. Work. No deadline? See a movie. (Hey, its research for that
next script!) Catch an independent flick at
Laemmles Sunset 5 Theatre, and dont think youll be sitting
in the dark alone just because its 1:30 in the middle of the afternoon.
Matinees in L.A. are more crowded than late shows (who can stay up past 10?)
because everyones looking for ways to kill time on, say, a Wednesday.
Get there early to buy tickets and while you wait for the show to start, you
can hangout at Buzz (coffee again? Stop!), browse the Virgin Megastore, or check out Crunch Fitness
(its everywhere!). Keep your eyes open and your teeth flossed: all of
these are good spots for meeting potential dates.
5. Do something for yourself. In the Hollywood Reporters 50 Most
Powerful Women in Hollywood issue, we learn that many of these powerhouse chicks
take time to do one thing thats just for them, and that one thing is
yoga, believe it or not. If thats not reason enough to get your ass on
a mat, I dont know what is. (Id have guessed a massage at Burke
Williams (8000 Sunset Boulevard) or a nice nap on the sofa with my favorite
pashmina, but thats just how crazy I am.) Try Yogatime (324 South Beverly
Drive) or Yogaworks (1426 Montana Avenue) and you might be lowering yourself
into the dog position next to Meg Ryan or Heather Graham.
6. Drink. After the rough day youve had, treat yourself to a drink.
Hollywoods Frolic Room draws oldtimer barflies as well as people you actually want to hit
on. If its a good strong margarita youre after, head over to El
Coyote and get in line.
7. Laugh. Monday night at Largo means you stand amidst pretty people and watch stand-up comics whove come
to practice new material. When I went, Janeane Garofolo was kvetching about
the bartender she brought home from a dive on Avenue B, confusing the girls
(whoops, I mean young women) next to me who wondered, "Is that in Santa
Monica or Venice or wh-a-a-t?" (New York, you ninnies!)
8. Get your eight hours of sleep. As you can see, youll need
Sherise Dorf is a Los Angeles-based writer with just enough time on her
hands to know where to go.
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