Life’s little luxuries
September 8, 2015 § 1 Comment
Cementing Silverlake’s downward slide into terminal gentrification, the space that once housed a laundromat in the strip mall at Sunset and Parkman is now Bone, Sweet Bone, outpost of a Studio City emporium by the same name. Those among us who lack en suite laundry facilities must look elsewhere, but canine companions need not go without. Daycare, grooming, food, and life’s little luxuries: This doggie boutique has it all.
Meanwhile, the outbreak of chichi on Silverlake’s strip of Sunset near the Junction has spread eastward to the block across from Millie’s. Summer brought a proliferation of shops of the kind that display one resplendent item per square yard amidst a forest of blonde wood shelving.
Gone are the smoke shop and computer repair guys. In their place, Detroit’s Shinola has brought its odd line-up (bicycles, watches, and pricey leather goods). Next to it, Aesop, from Australia, prossibly the world’s sole skin-care company with its own literary magazine, sells high-end body-pampering lotions and potions.
Surf shop Mollusk, its proprietors apparently believing the Silverlake hills must shelter at least a few surfer dudes, rents next to Pop Physique.
A.P.C., beloved for its $250 skinny jeans,* displaced Dustmuffin, which was shoved further east to the cluster of small shops near Descanso Street.
In place of the mid-century furniture store, retrofuturesuper [sic] has taken up residence. Lady Gaga and Yoko Ono are known to buy the design firm’s high concept eyeglass frames.
More changes are taking place two blocks away, where Heywood, A Grilled Cheese Shoppe, closed in the spring. (I marvel that it survived four years in that location serving only variations on bread and melted cheese at $10 to 14 a plate.) Yet another coffee bar will open in its place, despite being less than 100 yards from Muddy Paw, throwback to an earlier era, with its fair trade brews and and donations to pet rescue charities.
I feel the need to point out that in the block between these stores selling goods no one really needs at top dollar prices lies Micheltorena Elementary School. Micheltorena’s entire student body—roughly 300 pupils—qualifies for free breakfast and lunch.
A bit of relief from this press of hipster chic comes, surprisingly, from Diablo, the bar/eatery that pushed out family-owned La Parrilla. Diablo originally touted itself as an “Urban Taco Fabricator.” No, really; it used to say so on the outside of the building, right underneath it’s red-on-black name. If you look closely at the photo you’ll see that its pretentious tagline has been quietly painted out.
Sometimes, things do get better.
* To give you a sense of the high regard in which these garments are held, I quote from a Yelp posting by Tyler B. of NYC: These jeans are everything. Seriously, APC makes the best jeans. Never in my life have I had a pair of jeans I’ve adored so much. I’ve been through them all in my life, back in the day I liked Sevens, True Religions and Rock & Republic, you know, jeans that were trendy and loved ONCE UPON A TIME, NOW THEY MAKE ME SICK TO MY STOMACH. I’d rather be a fucking homebody and never show my face in public then wear fucking True Religion, gross. Since then I have tried other designer jeans and I never LOVED them, I never have had a pair of jeans that I truly adored, that truly fit me perfectly and showed my perfect legs…UNTIL A.P.C.
These jeans are so necessary, words really can’t describe. I bought my first pair and the next day went back to the store for more. They mold to your body, you will look amazing as long as you’re not like 300 pounds…actually maybe even then you’ll be okay because these jeans are THAT good.
January 6, 2013 § Leave a comment
This morning at one of the market stalls, all eyes were on a sweet-faced toddler who trailed after his mother as she moved about selecting carrots and onions and potatoes. As the clerk weighed the woman’s purchases, there ensued a conversation that went something like this:
“What’s his name?”
“Samwise? Is that a nickname for Samuel?”
“No. ‘Sam’ means ‘hear’ and Samuel means ‘hear God.’ Samwise means ‘listen to wisdom.’ We thought we’d, you know, broaden it a bit.”
I haven’t decided if the name is clever, cute, or annoyingly hip. But then, I have grand-nieces named Daisy and Clover so whom am I to judge?
N.B. Since posting this, I have been reminded that in 1 Samuel 1:20 (JPS) the name Samuel is said to mean, “I asked the Lord [YHWH] for him.” The transliterated Hebrew connected with the name is sha’ul me’el: “asked of God.”