The intersection of Sepulveda and Washington Place in Culver City is a treasure trove of really great neon and I drive past it all the time and marvel at it. In addition to the amazing sign (and sandwiches!) at Johnnie’s, there are a few motels on the eastern side of the street that have signage that I’m totally in love with. Two in particular – Deano’s and the Half Moon Motel – look like they probably offer some of the city’s sketchiest accomodation, but I’d rather not think about it. Instead, their totally amazing signs make me think of the 1950s and 1960s when Southern California was undergoing all kinds of development, and was ground zero for people wanting to get away from
the cold and snow to get a little piece of a place where it’s sunny all the time. These motels kind of fade into the landscape now, but I bet that when they were first built and the area was less developed, that neon stood out like a beacon. I can imagine that if I had just arrived in town searching for my 1950s-style Californian dream, fresh out of LAX, not knowing a soul, I’d totally decide to crash at the Half Moon Motel because of that smiling, friendly, neon moon.