Though not-Yale is many things, I will be the first to admit that it is not an easygoing, particularly pleasant or relaxed place. So in my final year of college I made the executive decision, aided my recently converted older brother who now worships all the Church of Our Lady of Los Angeles, to take a weekend on the other side of the country. Now, a person with my level of bitterness and general hateration for the universe is not general the person you would think about taking a weekend getaway to sunny Los Angeles, home of movie stars, pinkberry, thousands of illegal Mexican immigrants and Debordian spectacle all around. But my older brother, Alex, lives here, and works in Hollywood and wanted me to see it, and to be fair, not-Yale doesn't offer too many diversions this time of year, so with my sunglasses on my head and my most expensive jeans I headed off to LA.
Now, when I say headed off to LA I'm actually using a euphemism for "Took a cab from not-Yale to the not-New Haven train station, Took Metro North 2 hours to Grand Central Station, Took another cab from Grand Central Station to Penn Station through cross town traffic, Took New Jersey Transit from New York to Newark (possibly unwittingly deceiving a kind Latin American man on the way) and Took the Newark Airport Train to terminal C and waited for 3 and half hours to board a plane". You know, that common old saying. Upon my arrival in the Newark Airport I was informed by the nice blinking screen featuring departures that my plane would be an hour late. Lovely. So I wandered about the lovely sterile Newark Airport observing roving packs of cheerleaders and Midwesterners gawk and buy New York themed products. Amazing, given that we were in NEW JERSEY. But who am I to judge. I purchased David Sederis' new book and seated myself at what seemed like a fairly decent restaurant. Any by fairly decent I mean it served alcohol. Sure, it was 4:30 in the afternoon, but as my friend Cory assured me via text, it's got to be 5 somewhere.
Now, maybe it was the canned air in the airport, or my lack of hydration through the day, or the stress of all the traveling or maybe even it was my bad habit of working out every day, but two glasses of wine coupled with a salad left me fairly trashed. I looked up from Sederis' hilarious description of his attempts to quit smoking to see several DEEPLY southern ladies drunkenly talking about "Paaaris" and "biiistros" and "Well, I just try and eat at the biiig places and see what looks good, I aaalways have goood chicken when I go there" and could barely keep myself together. Did I mention these ladies were, like, a table away.
And it was this wine haze that made the hours I spent waiting to board the plan and then the HOURS spent on the plane waiting to take off bearable. As I finally landed in LA it was 12:30 at night, so 3:30am my time, it was cold, it was windy, and my wine buzz had vanished along with my good humor and attempts to be positive and laid-back, as I felt befitted a journey to the west. So I've started out super well, here in beautiful California. Wish me luck for the rest of it, it's already going so very well.
Leah Franqui is a fairly interesting person/director/writer/reader/eater/drinker. She likes ugly dogs and dislikes her hair in the morning. She's a sucker for environmental causes and plays hardball with deals on chewing gum. She is a struggle.