Wednesday, May 2, 2012

"The 'Wednesday Walk' Series - Continued"


I was not aware that there was a ‘Wednesday Walk’ series, until I realized this was my fourth post about my Wednesday morning mile-or-so walks to the “Groundworks” coffee emporium.  So yay – I have a series.  Which may, of course, disappear now that I’ve noticed it; that happens sometimes.  Oh, well.  I may as well enjoy it while it lasts.

A cold, blustery morning in Southern California.  And people are asking for their money back.

“I checked our contract.  We’re not supposed to get this!”

(Note:  I realize it is an insult to the people who have just endured a frigid winter – even a relatively mild one – and an affront to my younger self, whose feet, ears, nose and other body parts bear the residual effects of retroactive frostbite, but, to the denizens of Los Angeles, a bitingly gusty April morning with the temperature in the upper forties easily qualifies as “cold.”)

You can see it in people’s eyes as I hike down Fourth Street on my way to Rose, turning left for Groundworks.  These Southern Californians, most of them “transplants” from other places, are angry. 

“We’re wearing heavy coats and scarfs!  If we wanted to do that, we’d have stayed in Wisconsin!”

They are not alone. 

Many of them, thrust into the inclemency to see to their dogs’ eliminational requirements, walk locally reared animals who do not want to be out there either, the sparks of resentment in their eyes equaling that of their owners.

“I didn’t need to ‘go’ this bad!”

How cold was it in Santa Monica that morning? 

Priuses were shivering by the curbs.

The exchanged looks with the pedestrians I pass are revealing.  It is the same look “The Juice” slipped a guy I know when he visited the O.J. Simpson trial:

“Can you believe this?!?” 

As I exited Groundworks, I heard a fellow sufferer say, “Just waiting for the sun to come around that cloud” with the desperation of a South Pole strandee saying, “Just waiting for the Rescue Ship to come around that bend.”  I wanted to give the guy a hug.

How cold was it?  Scalding coffee bubbled up through the sippy spout in my cup, dribbling onto my fingers…

And it felt good.  

Okay, I’m going to take a metaphorical leap here, and I admit in advance, I may not be able to pull it off. 

We make movies and television shows here, our core values infusing everything we put out. 

Think about that. 

America’s entertainment is created by people who cannot handle bad weather. 

Intensity, depth, true suffering?  Can you really expect that kind of content from people who run under the covers when the temperature dips below fifty degrees?  The “ideal” is natural here.  We have three hundred beautiful days a year. 

That’s why we came here.  We could not deal with actual weather.  I once visited Chicago on Thanksgiving and found myself totally incapable of going outside. 

People like me, unable to cope with meteorological reality.  Do you really expect us to produce anything even remotely true to life?

I don’t think so. 

You get who we are

But I could be wrong about this.  These thoughts came to me during my walk.  And the punishing weather conditions may have done something to my brain.

1 comment:

Irwin Handleman said...

earl, just wanted to let you know how much i enjoy your blog. thanks for doing it.