The pain of alliteration

I was lectured by a new resident of Frogtown that they do not call it Frogtown. It’s called Elysian Valley, he said. They had just moved there from San Francisco. So you moved from Frisco to Frogtown, I said. That ended that conversation, but alliteration is like crack to a writer.

Waverly Terrace

We just don’t live in Silver Lake anymore, we live in Waverly Terrace Silver Lake. Or is it Silver Lake Waverly Terrace? This is what happens when Katy Perry moves into the neighborhood. Maybe we’ll be a gated community soon.

Anyway they even invited us to join their private online network. But we’re too stuck up. Stuck up on Waverly Terrace.

Life is rough.

All out of vanilla Haagen-Dazs


Was out  late last nite. Saw some great bands in a little Mexican dive in Lincoln Heights. I love the East Side. Silver Lake used to be East Side. Maybe not the tops of the Swish Alps, but in the lowlands, along the boulevards, and almost everything south of Sunset. It was Latino and gay and leather and punk rock and bohemian with traces of hippies and hints of jazz even, left over from the Soap Plant daze. Alas, Silver Lake is so Westside now. I remember years ago watching a blonde–one of those ultra blondes–walking down a nearby street with tits like grapefruit. Perfect orbs. You could teach geometry with those things. I stared a minute and thought Good Lord, what has become of my neighborhood? It wasn’t much later at the Mayfair (now Gelson’s) that a gorgeous power blonde–she had to be an attorney, just had to be–stormed up to the manager on perfect legs and screamed You’re all out of vanilla Haagen-Dazs! She was livid. Gave him hell, the poor bastard. He apologized. She said something wealthy and angry. My wife, watching, burst out loud laughing.


This story can also be found on, with all my cultural stuff.


Rock dove

We no longer have pigeons in Silver Lake. We have rock doves. Indeed, there was one on the sun deck. Just one. Very selective, our rock doves. The elite. Not like the mobs of pigeons you’d see in the Ralph’s parking lot, waiting for the crazy bird lady. But Ralphs is gone, the bird lady is gone, and the pigeons are gone, who knows where. There are other parking lots, other bird ladies. So there was just the one rock dove, gleaming after a winter’s rain. He landed on our sun deck with its million dollar view, and the mere mourning doves and finches and sparrows scurried out of its way. The rock dove carefully selected only the choicest seeds, looked about, and then, tired of slumming it, flew off to the rich people in the hills, where he can find a finer selection of avian cuisine and bird baths sculpted in Carrara marble. Meanwhile, back on our sundeck the mourning doves and finches and sparrows rushed back in, bickering, pecking, a disorder of tiny dinosaurs with no class at all. Gentrification has a long way to go among these birds.

A hoi polloi of pigeons, unwilling to discover their inner rock dove.

A hoi polloi of pigeons, unwilling to realize their inner rock dove.