I think I’m happiest when I’m Downtown at night. It’s sweet. A still and woken satiation made for me by the moonlit dichotomy of The Big City L.A. I see my mind stirring behind any group of 64th floor windows. At 3AM these glowing silver plates are bright and reflecting like mercury – my Gemini communicator. I really do think I can see myself in the windows. But it’s just my mind. It slows me till I’m stupefied. They look brilliant and I need their humbling to make me dumb.
In the back patio of Downtown L.A.’s La Cita, another edition of dublab’s, “Give Up – A Sad Dance Party,” was happening. Surrounded by friends, hipsters and scenesters, people much cooler than me, people I was much cooler than, my hair not good, my lipstick too light, jeans that should’ve been washed – frumpy young man, comfortable in her new down green jacket with fur-lined hood, sweet tooth tingling…gazed through La Cita’s black and yellow striped awning. It was something like a circus.
I could see the surrounding buildings that dwarfed the tiny Mexican bar. Rich.
La Cita is a dive bar. Was a dive bar. One that was bought by one of the hipsters. I think it’s the Short Stop owner, which is another bar I’ve never been to. I don’t go to bars much. At La Cita you can imagine the Mexican Cowboys that were there way before we were. They still visit during the day. I discussed the possibility of a mechanical bull with a friend. Otherwise, the platform and mirrors just don’t make much sense. Oh La Cita!
Blinking Christmas lights in disco colors. And our friends playing the records. The skyscrapers were perfect. Everyone thinks I should move to Silverlake or Echo Park but I really don’t want to. I crave the solitude the L.A. lofts fake out. I don’t want thin plywood walls. It’s fine that no one minds that you play your music loud in town. It’s more that I don’t want to hear them and, very kind of them, I don’t want them to hear me. Ever.
The skyscrapers at night mirror us. Major commerce going down by day. Lots of activity. The human energy alone probably illuminates these offices. And at night, they’re completely empty. Skeleton workers. Anyone there at midnight is not happy. They’re either cleaning, snorting, fucking, lying, cheating, dying. I have been that and all of the above – there in the Arco Building down the street.
But now I’m not Downtown or East Side. I’m West Side. Freeways help me move fast, but I’m covering a lot of territory when I do and it’s very quickly losing its spice.
So I learn to live on Venice Beach. It’s not surprising that I really only care for it at night. It plays the same trick as the skyscrapers but there are no facades. The Venice Night Crew are homeless, don’t clean, don’t wear suits but do wear their drug use and desperation on their sleeves. However, being at the end of the world, we’ve got the most authentic pitch black. It’s depth seeps into your mind and cushions your frustrations, turning them into glory. North, the mountains feature the Santa Monica Pier and Palisades twinkling red and orange stars. Every time I round the corner towards them, I pronounce, “Aw,” and feel a slap that hits my temple.
Why can’t it always be this way?
I hear the black sea making its world turning sounds.
It’s hard to learn that I trusted so much, to perform so many acts, to learn that I am nothing.
Still, I am moving.