I was riding the subway to downtown LA – the stop before the end of the line – to meet X-Files actor friend Dean Haglund, for his L.A. walking tour. It wouldn’t be an adventure with me unless some weird human interaction occurred, and true to form, I ended up deep in conversation with a hotel security guard who was brushing me up on my ASL sign language. (Note to Marovich – the sign I taught you for “please” is actually “thank you,” so when you’re signing me for “Water, please” during racquetball, I’ll have to reteach you the right way to do it now.)
A deaf man handed me a pen, and the security guard told me that he saw that same deaf man signing to someone that he buys 2,400 pens for just $5, so he has this ginormous profit margin. It was as if the security guard read my mind, because I was actually wondering about that in my overly curious journalist’s mind. The security guard told me it took him three years to get fluent in sign language, which he uses less and less in his job because cochlear implants are growing in popularity, and then we discussed the deaf community’s politics behind that. (There’s a serious disdain for those who get the implants from the deaf signing community.)
Anyhow, Dean took me on the best tour of L.A. I’ve had since I did the “Graveline” tour back in the ’90s, where I tooled around Hollywood in an old, black hearse to see the sites of celebrity deaths. Dean’s tour is unique in that it’s multimedia–he brings his iPad to show us the exact movie scenes shot in the spots he features on his walking tour. Here’s the Bradbury Building, where my favorite sci-fi film, Bladerunner, was filmed:
Along the way, I spied with my little eye something called “The Last Bookstore,” so I interrupted the tour to ask about it. Dean patiently and graciously added it into the tour. I’m a junkie for indie bookstores, and it quickly became one of my favorite stops. This new and used bookstore in an old bank building has its own art gallery and wonderful sculptures made of books – here are a couple for you:
I returned to the Dracula’s castle hotel and then Dave and I headed to a dinner for the Writers & Illustrators of the Future. I sat with old friends and clients, NY Times bestselling authors Kevin J. Anderson and Rebecca Moesta, along with legendary sci-fi author Larry Niven (pictured at the top of this page). Dave brought me a Fortune Cookie because he knows how I love the fortunes. Have you ever gotten one that is so stupid, you want a redo? Like the ones that say, “Help! I’m a hostage in a fortune cookie factory!” Well, this fortune was just as stupid, and one you’d see only in Hollywood. I want a redo:
Afterward, we headed back to Author Services where they interviewed Dave for a documentary. I wanted to get some gaffer’s tape to tape down his shirt pocket, so whenever this interview airs, I will be distracted by that.
Upon our return to Dracula’s Castle, we learned that our friend and Dave’s writing partner Mike Bawden is in town from Iowa, so we’re breakfasting with him this a.m. Mike and I recently did the P.R. together for Propworx, the company behind the recent Star Trek movie props online auction. (There’s another one coming up soon, so start saving your pennies, Trekkies!)
More to come…tonight will result in some crazy stories…let’s just say there’s a mechanical bull with my name on it.