LA in a New York way

It’s so odd to me. Here I am in ridiculously beautiful Beverly Hills, staying with a gorgeous, hospitable, and absurdly endearing couple (think dimples and a swagger), and I can’t help but think of my Straight Up and Dirty life. It’s so strange to me that I come here, to the west coast, and can’t stop thinking about my east coast friends.

I was in Kitsen Men just now, savoring time between meetings, and I thought of Alexandra. Of the cologne she bought her now husband. How I’d once walked down the street with her and her man, and saw her lean over and whisper something to him. I knew her so well, knew exactly what she was saying to him. I heard her say the word, "cologne," but nothing else. We all continued to walk, and I turned to her and said, "Nice."
"Let me guess," I said mimicking her, "that cologne he’s wearing makes you want to swing from his porch and show him all the dirty ways you can decorate his lanai."
"Oh my God, Lover! You know me so well!" she squealed. Then she laughed and pet my arm, and I loved how I could delight her, loved knowing her that well, loved how loved I made her feel.

So today I texted, phoned, and emailed her, asking what the name of the cologne was. I was, after all, standing in a store among rows of man water. She emailed back:

Himalaya in a silver bottle.  How come?
I think thee are hotter and more inoxicating scents out there.

I received her email after I’d left the store, with Creed’s Virgin Island Water cologne in tow. I let her know that it smells like a Pina Colada who had a once night stand.

The product description: "Representing different scents carried by the Caribbean trade winds. It has top notes of copra, lime from the Antilles, white bergamont and mandarin orange; middle notes of hibiscus, ginger, ylang-ylang and Indian jasmine, and base notes of musk and sugar cane and white rum."

Yum and a half. A lanai is definitely in order.




  1. Did you really write "ridiculously beautiful Beverly Hills"??

    I live in L.A. – albeit in a rural, wild, romantic Canyon six miles up from the Pacific Coast Highway, so I clearly made a different choice –

    Beverly Hills, which I visit only if I must for business reasons, is – through my eyes – The Saddest Place On Earth. A Disneyland for grown-ups, unsurpassed in its tackiness, desperately trying to mimic Mediterranean flair, but ridiculing itself through the awful, cheap plasticky copy that it is.

    Sigh… all the terrible cliches are true. Way too many immature, fatuous, ignorant, materialist, uninspired people.
    Oh the miserable rich ladies, disfigured by pitiable plastic surgery or aged before their time through thick layers of makeup, showing off nothing but their need to outwardly manifest their social status through tasteless jewelry, brand name handbags and haircuts and cloned get-ups, that all scream – are supposed to scream – "money!" "youth!" and "style!" – sadly never "class!".

    Sometimes I meander through the tree-lined parkways of the residential areas on my way back up to Sunset, back out west, just to stare in never-ending amazement at the architectural atrocities that money, minus class, has bought;

    It sure has a satisfying effect to glimpse at it, passing by, realize that my life is good as it is, happy and loved and grounded, that I couldn´t look any sexier than right now, make-up-less, ponytail, faded jeans and a plain tank top,
    I´d be ashamed if my appearance would scream to others how hard I am trying; if I would display or even could justify such decadence in the face of terrible poverty, right here in my city; if I´d be a materialistic fool that has no concept of real beauty, simplicity, understatement, and class.

  2. AMEN. I live in LA, too – unfortunately not in one of those wild, gorgeous canyons, but in Santa Monica. And Beverly Hills is anything but beautiful, let alone ridiculously. Did you actually think that through when you wrote it? Or is that statement just so telling about you? Seriously. Yuck.

  3. AMEN!. So well put. The women are funny and don't realize they look older when they dress/act (whiny high pitched little girl voices..shudder) what the consider 'younger'.

  4. I personally think materialism is fun. Especially because it's just so predictable and effortless to write about it.

  5. I have to say, every time I come to LA in a New York way | Stephanie Klein’s Greek Tragedy there is another fascinating post up to read. One of my friends was telling me about this topic several weeks ago, so I think I’ll e-mail them the link here and see what they say.

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