Silver Lake Snapshots From A Thanksgiving Morning

thank you elliottI bought the wrong kind of sugar last night for the cheesecake my wife is making from scratch today. Got powdered, not granulated. And I got cans of whole cranberries rather than the jellied kind, which is the only kind for me.

So I hop upon The Phoenix and with the sunrising behind me over Sunset do I ride with the Vons at Virgil as my destination. With the thoroughfare almost thoroughly to myself I pass an elderly gent standing on the Silver Lake overpass across from Pho and Rhambutan bemusedly rubbing a sheet of lottery scratchers. Winner? Not at that particular moment.

Further on up there are two chihuahuas, a black and a tan, sniffing around the corner of the Cliff’s Edge restaurant, lost or loose? Neither thankfully, their guardian whistles for them from nearer to the 99 where business is brisk.

At a red across from the Circus of Books, a tired voice comes from inside a tired minivan next to me and I turn to find a tired man ironically asking if I might have a buck for gas because he’s almost empty. “I only have my ATM card,” I tell him. His crest falls a bit, but he tells me it’s cool thanks and moves on with the green.

Quietly down past the dormant Jiffy Lube I roll smoothly up the rise away from the junction coming up on six corners counterclockwise with it’s Vista Theater, Auto Zone, used car lot, Vons, Blockbuster, and barbershop. I zag across the empty street at KCET then cut behind the Blockbuster and across Virgil and straight into the belly of the beast otherwise known as Any Supermarket On Turkey Day. With parking lot lanes stacked full of cars waiting for a space to open, I realize this is where everybody’s gone and I lock The Phoenix up by the front door, hustle through the bustle and exit shortly thereafter with my goods and a newspaper bundled into my backpack.

The trip back home along the south side of Sunset isn’t a replay. I stop to take photos at the Elliott Smith memorial and I’m passed by a local kid on a rickety ride whose rear roller is way warped. I snap my shots and catch up to him offering to help straighten him out, but he just veers off at 4100 Bar looking back at me in surprise. I wave, he doesn’t. I shrug and head on.

A couple coffees blissfully on the sidewalk at Casbah, there’s an impatient young man banging on the walk button in a hurry to cross at Micheltorena, and beyond him the sidewalk south of the free clinic is empty except for several people none of whom look at all thankful and I have this sudden urge to just round them all up and invite them over to our house. The urge passes at Cafe Tropical and the Silver Lake Boulevard overpass is now missing the bemused elderly Lotto scratcher. I hope he won.

I hope we all do. Happy Thanksgiving.

3 Replies to “Silver Lake Snapshots From A Thanksgiving Morning”

  1. sigh… thanks Will for the memories. I miss living in SilverLake/Echo Park, & the sort of quiet on the holidays, when I would often walk the dogs up Sunset & observe the same kind of fascinating little things of which you speak. Thanks brother… & happy thanksgiving to you, too.

  2. It’s moments like your morning that make the world a beautiful place. The juxtapositions of seemingly unrelated moments we all encounter in this city. You look at everyone passing through the world and wonder if they’re contemplating the same thing.

    It’s something to behold.

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