Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Rain, Anyone?

The Rainy season in Los Angeles that precedes the Flood/Mudslide season (the other two seasons of the year being the Fire Season and the Quake Season) has a definite effect on the people within the city. The first drizzle triggers a panic that has every news commentator on every local channel stationed at some outdoor hotspot, like the Media Center Mall in front of the Coffee Bean, talking in urgent and dramatic tone about STORM WATCH 2005. Or 2004. Or 2003. And so on. The first car accidents start due to the greasy build up that has accumulated over the previous ten months, which, combined with the bad driving habits particular to the region, makes for some pretty long hours in the car getting to and fro. Moods are generally bad. So is hair. Then comes the deluge. The Los Angeles Rainy season starts with a harmless drizzle in late December that becomes a sudden deluge of large sheets of water falling from above, often accompanied by wind that will make those lovely palm fronds from those trademark palm trees you see pictured in all those postcards detach and smash through your living room window. That is if you’ve neglected your Palms. I think they fine you for that. Anyway, the people get a little touched in the head during the short period of rain that generally tapers off in February. I think people are so dehydrated by the time it shows up that they are simply not prepared, despite the knowledge that it does this every year. The LA River fills to full with a current that moves at a good clip and generally claims a few lives, usually the invisible people that inhabit the river during the rest of the year. Weird people seem weirder, or maybe I just notice them more due to the cleaner air brought on by the rain. Who knows. For example, today, Manpants and I were driving down Magnolia and I noticed a tall man down by the river, wearing khaki pants, a sweater, deck shoes, carrying a large quantity of plastic grocery bags….wearing a three foot high Dunce Cap. I kid you not – I could never make up anything quite so random. A DUNCE CAP. He was walking into a grove of trees. To pee, perhaps. Or maybe he has a small cabin in there. Now, I’m not sure what a man would be doing in his GAP best down by the LA River wearing a Dunce Cap at 2:00 in the afternoon, or at any other time of day, for that matter and this little sighting will have me filled with wonder and puzzlement for weeks, I’m sure. I’m positively haunted by it. Then of course there was the elderly couple on Crescent Heights that were walking their pet duck. That was earlier. A pet white duck walking in front of the elderly couple as normal as you please. I thought I was losing my mind until someone else told me they saw the same couple. There is also a young lady in South Pasadena who walks her pot-bellied pig, in a bright pink harness and leash ensemble, at the same time each day down Fair Oaks Avenue. She looks at you a little defiantly if you stare. My thinking is – You’re walking a PIG, what do you expect? This is a major thoroughfare, not a rural country road.

People baffle me.


Blogger ThomasMcCay said...

Welcome back and thanks for reminding me there were some good things in L.A.

Where else would you see the dunce cap in the rain image you describe or the pink haltered pig out for an afternoon stroll.

Many years ago when I first hit LA, most recently from Alabama and Texas, Los Angeles seemed like a bit of heaven. I was so poor that the large number of low paying under the table jobs available seemed like a spotlessly good thing.

That image tarnished quickly, living and working on the bottom rung, but thanks for reminding me of some of what I really loved about the place.

29 December, 2004 03:27  
Blogger Demon King said...

Came here through BE; really enjoyed my visit here. Reminded me of my time in L.A. many moons ago. Thanks.

29 December, 2004 12:00  
Blogger B2 said...

L.A. seasons? As another native, I must point out that you missed one (though it is really more of an every-other-year sort of season): Riots.

29 December, 2004 14:48  
Blogger Laura said...

Dunce cap, huh? You sure he wasn't KKK?

29 December, 2004 15:16  
Blogger frstlymil said...

Definately more Renaissance Faire of the princess variety than KKK. Simply a tall white cone. No hood. Go figure.

29 December, 2004 15:26  
Blogger R said...

Sounds like the universe is going all out to get your mind onto other things. It's doing a good job I'd say. L.A. sounds whacked. I'd love it. As long as no one made eye contact. Thanks for the verbal corn holing you gave my newest reader. He is still rubbing his ass. And how about his reply? It's like he was holding his hands up in a defensive position screaming..."Change the subject I'm losing this argument, quick, change the subject" ha ha Millicent is back in her HOWSE. Rock on.

29 December, 2004 16:19  
Blogger Toni McGee Causey said...

The dunce cap siting is hilarious. On my first trip to L.A. to stay with friends, I was walking towards their apartment from the street when a woman came around the corner of the building, heading towards me... and she had a big leaf covering her nose. I don't know how that leaf was staying put, but it was, and it was covering her nose, and she walked along like that was the most ordinary thing in the world. I definitely knew I'd landed in L.A.

29 December, 2004 16:49  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The pig I can understand - but how to you leash train a duck?


29 December, 2004 16:51  

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