Welcome to LA
Written – Soho House Rooftop
Like many Brits who have gone before me moving to LA is jolly tricky thing to do. It’s a bit like wining one of those Teddies from the grab machine, you get it close a few times, even pick it up, everyone willing you on around you, but it always drops out before you get it in the hole, it’s kinda like that hard. Even now as I reside in the almost universal safe house of the Soho House, this little tranquil piece of home, where they are trained to decipher our accents, our names for things and serve Heinz Baked Beans for breakfast. “Cheers love and can I have a floater and just the bill, fanks! ”. But outside these walls is a whole other world!
I’ve been out here almost a year now, it lures you in once you do manage to get the Teddy in the hole, the sun shines nearly everyday and the days it doesn’t I chuck a little hissy fit but after a few hours of demanding my money back, I’m fine.
I sold my entire beanie baby collection and all my micro machines to be here and I will not let them go in vain!
But behind the shinny avocado growing exterior and the fact everyone is trying to do the same thing as you, all competing in a giant rat race with the highest stakes in the world, it can be quite a lonely old place.
I was having at this Chinese massage the other, it was a Friday evening and I was laying there, Me and Hum-Ming and I swear she was finding tension and causing me pain in places that until that moment felt quite spritely; I mean literally she was elbowing me in the face and walking along my back, it was agony but I’m laying there in between the yelps of pain (maybe with a few little tears forming ) trying to keep it all together, thinking away to myself and what I came up with was this was actually as good as my Friday night was going to get.
I had no plans tonight, I mean of course I could go to the safe house, which is always a sure fire bet you will run into half of London but it’s no fun on your own, all my close friends either work nonstop or are in couples and Friday night is date night.
So I think to myself fine; it’s ok, I’ll go home, read some scripts, do my homework and prepare myself, I mean maybe I’ll play on facebook or watch some porn but you get the gist and I’ll go out in the week instead, but then the week comes around and I’m busy and my friends are busy and I think to myself, ok fine, I don’t need to go out in the week, I’ll go out next weekend, then the following weekend comes around again and again and it the same situation. Just me and Hum-Ming! I mean I’m saving a fortune! She’s Cheep as chips! Forty five dollars for a hour plus tip and toll.
My great acting teacher in New York once said to me, that if you have time to do anything else, your not working hard enough and in this town, he’s right, if your not on it twenty four seven , there are twenty four other guys who look like you willing to go there.
I have some great people my life and my motto, “is the best that I can be” and with their guidance I’ve really changed myself the last few months, I’ve lost a stack of weight, like nearly 10kg (16pounds) I now have a trainer 6 days a week, hence why I keep Hum-Ming so busy as my body is falling apart. I’ve started Meditating and reading more, I’m juicing and have started a brand new brilliant acting school.
In New York I was out every night, all night, but here every ones in bed at 10pm, So I’ve decided to try and find a middle ground, to get my work done and keep all my balls in the air but to go a little deeper into LA culture and socialise a little more leave the safe house, try a burrito and oh I don’t know and take myself out for brunch. I mean what even is that… can you have baked beans with it ?
So last week whilst Hum-Ming was doing her think I devised a plan, I had done some research and rather than sitting at home in my kitchen learning lines I would get myself down to this place called the Urth Café, which I liked already as it was like saying Earth with my hard Essex accent that only normally comes out when I’m at a West Ham game.
How bad could it actually be leaving my comfort zone…
I went in, waited in line for a table, ordered myself a little kale salad with some chicken and avocado and a Jasmine mint green tea and I was well away sat there reading my lines.
Was there about half hour observing the world go by, quietly enjoying myself secretly proud of myself for pushing the envelope and getting out of the house, when all of a sudden, this gorgeous blonde comes and sits next to me.
We got chatting and before a traffic warden could give me another ticket for parking on a mildly mild steep hill with my wheel facing straight and not into the curb which of course on my jeep would make the other side quite largely pop out into the road of the traffic going past and therefore becoming a target for the well trained American drivers to hit and smash up my car… I had her number and we arranged to go for a drink this Friday night. I did feel a little bad on Hum-Ming, letting her down from our little Friday night slot but I’m she will understand.
Now I’ve learnt the hard way about texting girls in America; putting a kiss on a message is the kiss of death, literally they freak out and run away. But this girl was throwing them about willy-nilly, reconfirming and confirming again, calling to make sure I was on my way, and what to wear kiss kiss kiss.
Friday night finally rolled around, I informed Hum-Ming of the bad news and I was excited about my date, I had all my ducks in a row with all my homework done, I decide to leave the Jeep at home and get one of the posh big Uber Suv’s to pick her up in, yep I was going all out, a Prius just wasn’t going to cut the mustard tonight.
I’d picked this cute little understand restaurant in Laurel Canyon that my married friend John used when he was in trouble with his misses to get out of jail every so often, he told me it was a winner and off we went….
She looked every bit as beautiful as she did when I was rushing off before the parking Sargent got me at the café. We had a 9pm table, the place was packed with the whos who of LA, but understated and not flashy at all. They even had BBQ ribs on the menu but for the sake of my brand new white shirt I managed to resist.
The conversation flowed well, wed gone through two bottles of red and there were little crayons on the table and we drew each other, she was pretty good, I just tried my best and came up with this blue stick women, but she seemed to approve. But then….
As the main course arrived after telling me she had just got back from Ibiza after 3 months just last week, after taking one bite of her WELL DONE! $60 steak, “such a waste, why well done!!” She tells me, that she has to leave at ten thirty as she decided just before she came out tonight to go to an Ibiza reunion party.
With my new mellowed out self after working with the mediation and Hum-ming for a few weeks now, I just breathed in a big slow deep breathe and digested what she was telling me all the while looking down at her steak she wasn’t eating and said “ok”. I was calm and collected; a new me…
But this wasn’t the KFC drive through and after working my arse off all week and giving myself this one night off this isn’t how I had planned the evening going, indeed the only reason I went to the Urf café is so I wouldn’t be home alone at 11pm on a Friday night anymore…
But then came the kicker….
So we finish the last of our wine I give one last look to the chard remains of that poor cow and I get the cheque, offering her a lift home and that’s when she hit me with it…
That actually the guy she was going to the party with was outside in the car park WAITING FOR HER!!!!!!!!
WELCOME TO LA
jtx – @jammytaylor