Thursday, May 25, 2006

Non-E3 activities

Outside of E3, Milen and I did pretty much the entire tour of the L.A. area. Los Angeles itself is wholly unremarkable. It's run-down looking, and very concrete. Lots of greys. Oh, and it's deserted. It's as if nobody lives/works there. We took a nice walk from downtown up to Dodger Stadium. The walk was actually not very nice. It was a trek through some half-sketchy neighbourhood. Plenty of dilapidated houses. In fact, some parts were downright frightening. Forty minutes later, there we were. Beautiful Chavez Ravine. Some desperate guy in his car needed to unload tickets, so we got second row, $40 tickets for $10 apiece. Pretty sweet deal. The game itself seemed like a blowout, with the Dodgers up 9-0 at one point, but Houston made it interesting, with a final score of 9-6. The walk back was more frightening, as it was dark and sketchier than before. We walked a good hour, maybe, forty minutes of it without seeing a single person. The city is deserted. I assume it's because nobody is crazy enough to walk around L.A. except us, who don't know any better. So maybe it is safe because everyone thinks it's dangerous.

The previous night, upon arriving in L.A., we picked up our rental car and drove down to beautiful Burbank with our e-ticket in hand to catch the Tonight Show. Jay Leno was his usual unfunny self. Key guests were Lindsay Lohan and Black Eyed Peas. Kevin Eubanks is lame.

Storytelling-wise, the rest of the places we visited probably are not really interesting to other people. We checked out all the major places. Hollywood Boulevard (with the Walk of Fame, the Kodak Theatre, Mann's Chinese Theatre and plenty of unremarkable things. Hollywood is kinda dingy).

Of course, we went to Beverly Hills, a bit of Bel Air and Rodeo Drive, with tons of fancy stores. Everyone in these fancy neighbourhoods job, by the way. You just see fleets of people jogging. It's surreal. We toured Santa Monica.

The 3rd Street Market there is really neat. It's illuminated at night and blocked off from car traffic, so you can go shopping at the nice boutiques in peace. Santa Monica Pier is also very picturesque. We went all along the beach communities, too, on the PCH. Through Venice Beach, passed by Manhattan Beach, stopped off at Long Beach. Ate at Bubba Gump Shrimp there. Finally, we drove into the O.C., checking out Newport Beach. There were paragliders there! Then we proceeded up through Anaheim, curled west back into L.A. and drive through Mulholland Drive, which is sick. It's a tiny, long, winding dark road through the hills, past estates of very wealthy movie people. Every now and then, there are rest points where you can see the entirety of Los Angeles off one side of the hills and Burbank and the Valley off the other side. It is at this point that you realize just how breathtakingly immense the Los Angeles area actually is. It is unfathomably huge.

Oh, and the best for last. I made good on my promise to shake my fist at Paramount. Good times.

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