Tuesday, July 10, 2007

LA via NYC missive #437

One of the first things I noticed about Los Angeles was the bums. They have an actual LA bum "look". I'll see a guy rummaging through a dumpster and I can tell, "That's a West Coast bum. That bum is West Coast".

In any other city in the world, the homeless eventually deteriorate to the same basic way of looking: colorless, nondescript clothing, a slightly large, bear like overcoat, dirty, matted overgrown beard and hair. In LA you see the remnants of real style pre-deterioration.

You'll see a dirty barefooted guy sitting on the ground begging and he's dressed like one of the Beatles (Ed Sullivan period). A guy will be sitting on a bench at the beach with that "stay away from me I'm a psycho" vibe. There's hardly a trace of humanity left in his poor soul yet he'll be in a rotted orange Zoot Suit with a moldy green carnation in the lapel. You see cowboy bums, hipster bums, Ray Charles, Phyllis Diller and Jimmy Hendrix bums.

All the road kill of a Mack truck called Hollywood.