LA stories

So, I just flew in from LA and I’m exhausted.  Ok, yes, I didn’t “just” fly in and yes, it is fun to say that and it makes me feel cool (just the letters “LA” resonate with coolness), but I am tired.  That part is true.  I took my first (and last?) redeye home from LAX on Sunday night.  Only it wasn’t quite “home” since I don’t live in Cleveland.  I had to wait almost three hours in Cleveland (from about 6:30 am until 9:15 am) before getting to take an almost two hour flight home.  And then I slept and slept and still wish I were sleeping.

I had such a nice trip, though.  The weather was so lovely, despite what Angelenos may tell you.  Sunny and 60s beats cloudy and 30s every day of the week, if not the year.  It was so ridiculously fun not to have to wear a hat, mittens or even a coat.  Though I was grateful for the long cardigan I  had just splurged on at Anthropologie.  The clerk had told me I would wear it all the time and she was right.  So, I arrived on Thursday night and broke my nail trying to help some guy get his luggage off of the baggage claim and he barely muttered ‘thanks.’  Welcome to California.  But not really because the rest of the trip was peppered with strangers saying things like, “Hi, you guys!” while we passed them on the sidewalk.  I like friendly, but sometimes it was scary — I would wonder if people were mistaking me for a celebrity.  Ha.  Ok, not really.  Anyway, we went to dinner at a joint called Chaya and I’m sure it was good, but I was so nauseous that I thought I was going to hurl.  So, what do I do?  Order a martini and tuna tartar.  What?  Yes, it’s true.  The martini I managed to get down but the tuna tartare looked how I felt.  Why did I order it?  I have no idea.  I’ve never had it before and never want to.  Sarayu had some yummy looking meat, which she was assured had no butter in it when she told the waiter she was gluten-intolerant.  This meal was on the house as Sarayu knew the marketing person or something and called in a fun favor.  It was a bit of a bummer, though, because a free meal at a posh LA restaurant should not = 1 martini + a couple of Sarayu’s raspberries.  Oh well. 

The next day we got up and drove to Griffith Park and went on a hike.  This was quite a feat for two reasons: (1) it took us forever to find the trail head, which is weird because it was clearly marked and had about 100 people on it (with their dogs) and (2) it was steep and hard and I am out of shape.  It was warm and sunny, though, which made it bearable and we got to talk a lot in between breaths.  The view of LA was grand — though views over big cities are always kind of weird to me.  It’s sort of, yes, there are a lot of buildings and cars.  Anyway, the shots I got of the Hollywood sign with Sarayu looking super Hollywood were fun, I thought.  Back down the hill we went and stopped at Griffith Observatory for more observations and for some learning about tides and eclipses and such.  Back down the hill some more and we had lunch OUTSIDE at a super cute place called Alcove.  It was across the street from a small-looking Scientology center (more on Scientologists in a bit).  After this we drove around, poked in a couple of shops and then headed back to Casa de Rao.  That night we had a yummy dinner (mussels, salad and garlicky spinach) at a place called Pace on Laurel Canyon.  It’s weird how everyplace has valet and how you have to valet even when there is a parking lot.  Oh, LA.  So, as we walk in, we run into a casting director that Sarayu knows from a couple of auditions.  As Sarayu said, it was so very LA.  She’s talking to him, giving him a hug, being her charming self.  I have no idea who he is so I’m staring at everyone else around us.  You’d think with the amount of staring I did, I would have spotted some celebs, but no.  I had to keep having Sarayu point them out to me!  At dinner, she discreetly informed me that Anna Faris was at the table kitty-corner behind us and that Ian Ziering was at the bar.  Then came John Henson of Talk Soup fame (fame?) who sat at the table next to us.  Yay!  Celebrities!

The next day we saw Peter Brady at lunch at Hugo’s, which is also famous for serving Kate the most delicious turkey burger she has ever had.  Weirdly, while in LA, I ate two veggie burgers, one turkey burger and one mozzarella panino.  That’s a lot of sandwiches.  I couldn’t shake my sandwich yen.  I think, though, that I’m now in the clear.  This day was Sarayu’s birthday so we did what every girl dreams of on her birthday: going to a super crowded Target.  And it was Saturday.  We did have fun, though, and I got to buy Sarayu some fun stuff to spruce up her already cute apartment.  We got manicures and pedicures at a cute place Sarayu frequents.  This was good except (a) the woman giving me my services kept chastizing me for having such dry, broken nails (being from Wisconsin did not count as an excuse in her eyes) and (b) I ruined my manicure almost immediately.  After this, we rushed home to get ready for the Big Night Out.  We had dinner with Sarayu’s very close friends, Patrick, a professional musician and Scientologist (my first encounter with a real, live one!), and Lacey, a professional actor and all-around nice, nice gal, and their significant others.  Despite the obnoxiousness of the table seating (extremely large table for five tiny Californians and me), it was really pretty fun.  I get nervous talking to strangers (and even friends sometimes), but I thought I did ok and what did it matter?  All eyes were (rightfully) on Sarayu anyway.  I took some pictures that I will soon post.  After dinner, the Lacey contingency left and while the Patrick contingency lingered for a bit, they were gone soon, as well.  Then the rest of Sarayu’s enormous group of LA friends started filtering in to the bar part of the restaurant.  It was fun, but exhausting, meeting everyone.  Sometime after 1, we headed home.  Sunday was spent having a yummy lunch (and no one told me it was the start of DST!  I’ve never been so unprepared!) and going to open houses in North Hollywood and thereabouts.  The least expensive place we saw was $775,000.  It was two beds, two baths and about 1,000 SF.  Hmm.  Cute, but really?  Shocking.  The most expensive one we went to was $1.8 million and was so not cute.  We did, though, find a gem in the Burbank hills.  Built in the 1930s, it had been lovingly restored and had the most beautiful living room with enormous french doors that opened to a lovely backyard. Mmm!  Scruptious.  And it was only $1.3 million.  Hooray!  Sold.

Alas, that night I boarded my flight to fly east.  Before I could do so, however, I had to bear witness to a jerkstore in the aisle of the plane, singing while he boarded.  Singing.  It’s 11:30 pm and he has no ipod, but he does have on aviator sunglasses.  He must have bumped the guy seated in the aisle behind me because a little fracas ensued.  Aviator jerkstore started calling the Aisle Guy “baldy” and “old brother” and stuff, while Aisle Guy just ignored him.  Aviator jerkstore said to the flight attendant standing patiently behind him, “This guy just assaulted me!  I bumped him and he pushed me and said, ‘Don’t do that again!’  You should do something about this.”  And then later, as he made his way down the aisle, “Are you going to follow up on this?”  A couple of minutes later, a sort of official-looking woman comes on the plane and the flight attendant asks Aisle Guy to come with her.  He does.  They leave the plane.  Flight attendant then goes to the back and gets Aviator jerkstore.  They leave the plane.  Aisle Guy comes back, Aviator jerkstore doesn’t.  Hooray!   Justice and common sense prevail!  And we take off…


47 Responses to “LA stories”

  1. 1 Sara H March 11, 2009 at 8:02 am

    Wow, that sounds like a totally fun trip! Ian Ziering! Casting directors! Hanging with TV stars! (I saw that episode of Life!) Except the travel sounds exhausting, but I guess it always is.

    I can agree with you on the 60 degrees and sunny thing being just divine – we were in Florida 2 weeks ago, and while I’m not sure it ever got above 70, I still couldn’t get over the fact that I didn’t have to wear socks. It was such a treat.

    WTF is up with the -10 wind chills today? Back to the socks, hats, mittens…. Only 1 month until farmer’s market, which means warm weather is around the corner. I am sure of it.

  2. 2 gracieandkate March 11, 2009 at 9:23 am

    I’ll take your word for it. You know, I know it’s just March and we probably will have snow in April and maybe May, but I really am over it. The wind chills blow. Literally. The thing is, being in Cali was nice for several reasons, but so much because I did not have to wear 18 layers to go outside. Did I forget my hat? Oh, no, I didn’t because I don’t need one! Where are my mittens? Oh right, they’re in the bin in Wisconsin because I. Don’t. Need. Them. O warmer weather! Please come soon!

  3. 3 Heather March 11, 2009 at 10:51 am

    That sounds like a great trip. Dinner with Lacy and seeing Anna Faris and the others. awesome.

    and sun is sooo nice. we went to pasadena last march and dale was about ready to move there, and i think that sunshine had a lot to do with it. tucson was a totally weird city, but so sunny that it might be nice to live there. it’s like the only thing you might forget are your sunglasses, not your hat, scarf, mittens, and shoes that can go through whatever crap is coming from the sky or already on the ground that day.

  4. 4 Kate March 12, 2009 at 9:50 am

    Why are suits so expensive and why do courts require I wear them?

  5. 5 Sara H March 12, 2009 at 12:44 pm

    Ugh, suits. I don’t know how I managed to wear them every day when I was at The Firm. And I wore skirts sometimes, no less! It was madness.

    And you know that judge isn’t wearing some stuffy suit under the robe.

    You should come to the Land’s End warehouse sale this summer! I got 2 suits there last year )plus an absolute ton of dress pants/shirts) for less than $200. I just can’t make myself shop at Ann Taylor or anything for that stuff – it’s outrageous!

  6. 6 Kate March 12, 2009 at 2:23 pm

    When is the Land’s End sale and where? I need specifics. I just bought a suit from Banana, but I’m scared it’s going to be a piece of crap. I had a 30% off thing, though. The last two I got at Macy’s for super cheap, but I hate them. And hate them more than normal suitage. The jackets are too short, which only looks good in my opinion if you are of the small-hipped variety, which I am not.

    Also, I just got an email from a coworker and it was all in caps. Why?

  7. 7 Kate March 12, 2009 at 2:23 pm

    Also, I wanted to share a mascara trick of Sarayu’s I learned while in LA. She wears the Maybelline Full ‘n’ Soft and then puts the Great Lash over it. Interesting!

  8. 8 Kate March 12, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    That’s the kind Sarayu got me! I’m glad you said that because I thought maybe I just didn’t remember the curved brush.

  9. 9 Kate March 12, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    The two peeps that are sitting in bet. Sarayu & Lacey and her boyfriend. Curly-haired lady and guy with her.

  10. 10 gwendolyngarden March 12, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    What fun! How very LA– of course I’m too lame to know who half of he people you mentioned were, (except for Peter Brady)– It sounds lovely, and I’m glad you got to go house hunting. And the tuna tartare… oy vey.

  11. 11 gwendolyngarden March 12, 2009 at 2:10 pm

    “half of the” not half of he. My keyboard isn’t working as well as it used to.

  12. 12 Kristin March 12, 2009 at 2:31 pm

    I just bought new Great Lash, but I got the kind with a curved brush which is new for me. Wish me luck!

  13. 13 Kristin March 12, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    I am super nervous about it. Have been using a straight brush for eveeerrr.

    PS Which one is the scientologist?

  14. 14 rose March 12, 2009 at 3:00 pm

    Lacey is one of the kids from Party of Five! I totally recognized her and then just double checked on imdb.
    I’m glad you had a good trip and short reprieve from the cold!

  15. 15 Kristin March 12, 2009 at 3:02 pm

    Gotcha. Shira (who I work with) guessed it right.

  16. 16 katelloyd March 12, 2009 at 3:03 pm

    Hee hee. That obvious, eh?

  17. 17 Sara H March 12, 2009 at 3:08 pm

    It’s usually the first weekend in August, just once a year. It’s pure insanity – they hold it at a large park pavilion on top of a hill somewhere that’s like a half hour away in Dodgeville, I forget where exactly, and there are no good directions – I got lost last summer. There are RACKs and racks and racks, and suits are tricky – you have to find the jacket in the jacket rack and then prowl the pant racks to see if anything matches – how I located two pieces of a navy suit and a black suit, I do not know. And of course it’s in a crowded pavilion in August, so it is hotter than heck and there’s all this booming music (I like to move it move it…) and you’re running around with armfuls of clothes. The “dressing rooms” are basically unlit. In. Sane. But totally worth it.

    Hate short jackets. Feels weird.

    Thanks for the mascara tips!! I’ve been using the greatlash, and it’s been ok, but I think I need more volume or whatever. I think I need to procure one of those curler devices. And apparently a dual system, one part with a curved brush. THANK YOU. 🙂 Caps for fun.

  18. 18 Kate March 12, 2009 at 4:30 pm

    I think the Shu Uemura is the best curler, but I’m open to hearing from others.

    The Move It Move It sale sounds ridiclously scary and adventurous. I am almost always gone on family vacation that first weekend in August so perhaps that is why I’ve never heard of it. But probably not because it also sounds like it’s one part Secret Dawson’s Creek Rave where you have to run around finding the key master.

  19. 19 Kate March 12, 2009 at 4:36 pm

    I know. Claudia Salinger. She is super cute and incredibly nice. It was really nice to meet her — she’s a good friend of Sarayu’s and I’m really glad Sarayu has her.

  20. 20 Sara H March 13, 2009 at 7:57 am

    OMG, that IS Lacey Chabert! I loved POF!

  21. 21 Kate March 13, 2009 at 10:27 am

    I’m still getting used to the two mascaras, but I think I like it. I need more practice. Plus, Rao, you just have WAY better lashes than the average Jane. The average Jane being Kate.

  22. 22 Sarayu March 13, 2009 at 10:23 am

    Lacey IS super cute, and super sweet. She’s a keeper. So, when do we get to buy the pretty house in Burbank and move in together?

    Um, as far as suits, ugh. They are crazy expensive. I got my last one at Banana and it’s done well for me, but it’s so silly to pay full price bc ultimately everything goes on sale anyway.

    I love the two coats of mascara thing. I like it because the full’n soft really conditions the lashes while the great lash makes them so thick and full- and I LOVE the curved brush. You really get those corner lashes that way. It makes all the difference!

  23. 23 Kristin March 13, 2009 at 12:00 pm

    I am using my new curler brush for the first time in about two hours and I can’t wait!

  24. 24 Kristin March 13, 2009 at 12:01 pm

    Well, brush that is curled, I mean. The brush does not actually do the curling. For that I use whatever plastic one I find at the drug store – I like them way, way better than any metal one I’ve tried.

  25. 25 Sarayu March 13, 2009 at 1:22 pm

    Kate, you have great lashes! I think I need to get one of those Shu Uemura curlers. Will look into it ASAP.

  26. 26 Kate March 13, 2009 at 3:05 pm

    Yes, it was recommended to me by Terry, I believe. Feehead, you should try it. I hate the drugstore metal ones, but this one’s really nice — it doesn’t pinch and it actually works.

  27. 27 Kristin March 15, 2009 at 1:57 pm

    OK, will give it a try and report back.

  28. 28 rose March 16, 2009 at 2:58 pm

    I have to say–the eyelash curlers (the ones that actually curl the lashes) scare the heck out of me!
    I’ve never tried using one….

  29. 29 Kristin March 16, 2009 at 3:16 pm

    Oh Rose you must. It will change your life!

  30. 30 Kate March 17, 2009 at 8:37 am

    Really Rose?!? Oh my. Kristin is right — you must. I can’t imagine not doing it. Granted, my eyelashes are short and super straight so I need it more than most, but it really is the greatest thing.

  31. 31 Sarayu March 17, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    Hey, I meant to as, how did the “Very Black” work out? Too dark, or do you like it?

  32. 32 Kate March 18, 2009 at 10:35 am

    Oh, I do like it. The thing is, I just have a crap-ass face. I wear makeup and I like it so much, but I don’t think it makes any difference. I just need to lose some serious weight and get new hair. Then the very black will look smashing.

  33. 33 Sara H March 18, 2009 at 11:22 am

    Kate. You do not have a “crap-ass” face.

  34. 34 Kate March 18, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    Thanks, guys. I just feel crappy lately. I just got back from bootcamp and can barely stand up. And I have a supreme court brief due tomorrow that I thought was kinda done, but just met with a coworker with 30 years more experience than I who made about one billion changes/suggestions. Am overwhelmed.

  35. 35 Kristin March 18, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    I love your sweet face. With or without make-up.

  36. 36 Sarayu March 18, 2009 at 3:36 pm

    You’re amazing. First of all, boot camp totally scares me. As for the Brief, if anyone can blow them away, it’s you. You just take it little by little and trust your gut. You’re the smartest cookie I know. Don’t make any changes that you don’t agree with. Finally, I couldn’t love your face anymore. I think your face and all of you are just perfection. My favorite was when I got to see your beautiful self for 4 days in LA. That was brilliant.

  37. 37 Sara H March 19, 2009 at 7:34 am

    Bootcamp? Like, for lawyers, or like GI Jane (which is a movie I can watch again and again, for some odd reason)?

  38. 38 kate March 19, 2009 at 8:41 am

    I didn’t know anyone had seen GI Jane.

    I guess like GI Jane, but probably less intense. And only an hour. At Capitol Fitness.

  39. 39 Kristin March 19, 2009 at 8:25 am

    I’ve never seen GI Jane. I guess I should?

  40. 40 Sara H March 19, 2009 at 9:04 am

    It’s really not a very good movie. Viggo Mortenson has a bad mustache and wears bad shorts. But Demi kicks some butt and has fabulous arms. It’s like Twister – if it’s on, I’ll watch it every single time, notwithstanding really bad dialogue. But I wouldn’t actually recommend it to others.

    “Only” an hour of boot camp at CF would probably put me on the floor. I wuss out and go to Curves – there’s no pressure to do more there!

  41. 41 Sarayu March 19, 2009 at 9:47 am

    I don’t why I capitalized “brief” in my above comment. How embarrassing.

  42. 42 Sara H March 19, 2009 at 11:52 am

    For anyone starved for Project Runway news, NY Post is reporting that Kenley was arrested for throwing her cat, 3 apples and a laptop at her fiance.

  43. 43 Kristin March 19, 2009 at 2:11 pm

    I heard about that! And get this – her fiance’s last name is Penley. Kenley Penley. Love it.

  44. 44 kate March 20, 2009 at 9:48 am

    Her cat? Three apples? Oh, Kenley. Poor thing. If only she’d listened to Tim more…OMG, it’s been SO long that I almost blanked on Tim’s name. NBC/Bravo/Lifetime, put aside your petty differences and get us some runway!

    I am now intrigued by this ‘GI Jane’ you speak of. I did not know that Mr. Mortenson was in it…Plus, I love movies where you get montages of training, which I assume there must be. A la Flashdance, Rocky, Bad News Bears…

  45. 45 Sara H March 20, 2009 at 11:27 am

    directed by Ridley Scott, too. Oh, there are training montages. Demi, bald, doing pushups, Mama Told Me Not To Come playing… and there’s political intrigue, too.

    Now that I think about it, maybe it IS an awesome movie.

    But beware Viggo in the shorts – I always think he’s hot, but that just wasn’t.

  46. 46 Sara H March 20, 2009 at 11:27 am

    And Penley!? That would have been karma.

  47. 47 Kristin March 20, 2009 at 12:34 pm

    Stupid Kenley Penley.

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March 2009

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