9:00 We’re still in the parking garage. We emerge into the sunlight at 9:09. Now where are we? I see the letters GB in neon and the number 225. Not enough to go on. Yet. I see the words “General Thaddeus Kosciuszko,” which is the name of a street. So we’re on Olive Street right now heading southwest-ish. This couple can really dance, but I sincerely hope that those are some version of cheerleader “spankies” under her skirt. We make a left onto 4th Street. We go a block and then everything starts to look different from how it looks in Google Street View, but the view behind the dancer matches, so we’ll assume that we’re still on 4th. We cross Broadway and then make a right. I panicked for a moment when we could see a sign that said “4th Street” behind the 9:24 again, but then we passed what was a Walgreens in January of 2017 and a sign that said “5th Street” and I knew that everything was all right.

9:28 Our dancer is a woman in a motorized wheelchair or scooter of some sort. As we reach the intersection, Beattie heads a little to the south and I thought that we were going to turn. Nope. He was walking down the curb cut so that she could use it as well. That made me smile.

9:32 We are now filming a guy carrying a pizza. Is he a delivery guy? Is it his pizza? Is he doing a favor for a friend? We don’t know yet. He does make a left onto 7th, though. And he starts dancing with the pizza. I hope he’s not a delivery guy because that pizza is definitely not held level throughout. He holds the pizza out to some people he passes. Maybe he’s selling the pizza? At any rate, he puts it down and then makes a left onto Spring Street. I hope one of the crew (from what I’ve read, there are like 15 people involved at any moment) is watching the pizza. Boy, Downtown LA has big blocks.

9:36 We’re somewhere else now. Let’s find out where. We’re still on Spring Street between 6th and 7th, still going the same direction, even. But we’re on the other side of the street. We then turn right onto 7th and head northwest.

9:44 We’re just all over the place today. We have the word “Tower” and a sign that says “8th Street,” so it looks like we’re at 8th and Broadway headed northeast on Broadway. If you ever get invited to dance in a video, you can’t go wrong with The Pony. If I had more intestinal fortitude than I currently possess, I would go back and figure out exactly how many dancers are doing The Pony in this thing.

9:50 This kid is a good dancer. Also, there’s another police car.

9:52 Another small kid with better moves than I’ve ever had. Don’t know where we are yet, though. She passes a Famima!! (yes, the exclamation points are part of the name) store. I think I see the Los Angeles theater in the background, which means that we’re still on Broadway. Yeah. I think we’re between 5th and 6th on Broadway.

9:56 Let’s find out where we’re going to spend the hour between 9:56 and 10:56. I can see a sign that says Cesar E. Chavez Drive. Another sign says “Mozaic.” That ought to be enough to go on. We’re now near Union Station on Union Station Driveway, near as I can tell. And then we dance our way right into the station. Let me guess that this is where Pharrell will turn up next. I love train stations. I guess I know one place we’ll be going the next time we’re in California.

Believe it or not, Union Station is just within the boundaries of our polygon. So now our polygon is 21.64 square miles.

Also, this is when I realized that Pharrell has to be between the Alexandra Hotel and the next building over in his 1:00 am appearance. You can see the arched windows of the building at 5th and Broadway behind him.

10:00 I guess that 10:00 will have to go with 9:00. All hour, the dancers have stayed in or near Union Station. They occasionally have walked outside of Union Station, but no one has actually left the property.

10:56 Let’s see where we go next. I wish I could read the name of the street in the background there. It’s a short name and the first letter looks like maybe an “M”? There’s something that looks like a convenience store there on the right. We head down an alley and I still haven’t been able to identify anything. I can see the word “shop” one of the windows. Maybe it’s a barber shop, maybe it’s a tailor shop. I guess we’ll find out.

So I’ve decided that rather than futzing around with a map (and my spellchecker liked “futzing.” Who knew?) I’d just copy the list from the city website. And messing with the list makes me think that maybe futzing with a map would be easier. Dear God.

Ultimately, once I remove all of the formatting and the extraneous stuff like addresses and photos, I’ll maybe bold the ones I’ve been to and change the colors of the ones I’ve written up? Or maybe pretend I’m using a highlighter and turn the ones I’ve been to blue and the ones I’ve written up green or purple? Or maybe use pink and orange, so that it looks less like links. I think I like that.

So ultimately,

Friedrich Wilderness Park

Will turn into

Friedrich Wilderness Park

once I’ve visited it and

Friedrich Wilderness Park

once I’ve written it up?

Should I pick a different shade of orange?

Friedrich Wilderness Park

Yeah. I like that darker orange better.

Now, once I’ve cleaned up the list what should I do with it? For reasons I don’t understand, school playgrounds are on the list now — this makes me a bit nervous since, well, school property. I think I’ll remove them from the list as I go.

Should I put them on my “about” page? Add a new “about”-type page for this list? Make it a blog post with a special tag?

I think that probably the new “about”-type page would be best so that *I* can find the list pretty easily. I don’t want to lose it and then have to recreate it again.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go remove photos from the “L”s.

P.S. It just hit me. Once I’ve finished this list and all of them are orange, I’ll have to go back through the official city list because I’m pretty sure that they’ll’ve added new parks in the however-long it takes me to go through the whole list.

This is what’s known as job security. Or would be, if I were making any money from this yet.

I’m finally getting back to posting these and I owe it all to J. Balvin. I heard his song “Safari” (that is a YouTube link; this is the Amazon link) on the radio and the voice of the man singing “Vente conmigo. Solo conmigo” sounded so damn familiar. And it turned out to be Pharrell Williams, which reminded me why Pharrell’s voice sounds so familiar. This project.

Lots of people dancing up the river for the first hour but not many landmarks, so we’re getting two hours for the price of one here.

Next up, the rest of 6:56, followed immediately by 7:00.

7:00 We’re on the Los Angeles River now and likely to stay here for a long time. Looks like after 7:04 we start walking north along the river. At around 7:19, we pass a sign that says “Equestrians prohibited” which makes some kind of sense, since the horse chestnuts would probably be difficult for bikers to avoid. But then we pass a “horse crossing” sign and now I’m totally confused. I also don’t buy that this is 7:00 am because (a) the direction of the shadows makes me think that the sun is to the west, and not the east, and (b) cars are actually able to drive on the 5. If I recall correctly, by 7 am traffic is at a standstill on the freeways.

7:56 We move to the actual river itself, rather than the bank. It looks like the place where they filmed the race scene in Grease. And it doesn’t just look like it. This is the same place. The bridge in the background is the 7th Street Bridge in Grease, and today there’s a kind of low-lying building with lots of windows up on the bank. You can see the same building (or a substantially similar one) on Google Street View. Stretching that corner of the polygon out that far brings us to 21.58 square miles. So now we have 163 Hours of Happy.

8:00 We’re still in the LA River. This part of the river has a current. I was not expecting that. Pharrell walks down the dry edge of the river, up the berm under the next bridge, and around what looks to be some homeless person’s shopping cart. Hey, loving a city requires you to accept some of the less pleasant aspects (even if you aspire to change them). We end up in some kind of tunnel.

8:04 So this is fun. We dance through that tunnel and out onto the street. You can see that we’re near a bridge, but fuck if I can tell what bridge we’re near. Finally, after 8:08, we dance past a sign saying “590santefestudios.com” so I use that as my signpost to find our location. The closest bridge to that sign is the 4th Street bridge, but that wasn’t right. So I did some digging and found that the 6th Street bridge wasn’t demolished until 2016. So it was still there when the video was made. So I hit Google Street View, and there, in November 2015, is the bridge. And there, from under the bridge, is the building that our 8:08 dancer is passing. Then I took a step forward and the bridge and building are both gone. I couldn’t find the exact spot again, but I found one close to it and went back and forth “Now they’re here” “Now there gone” for a while. That’s always fun to do on Google Street View.

We make a left onto Willow (the building she dances past is still there in October of 2017). She covers a lot of territory in her four minutes. I didn’t expect her to get nearly as far as she did on Willow. We make a right onto Mateo and then another right onto Palmetto and a left onto Santa Fe.

8:20 We’re at a bridge again. What bridge? Dunno. Wait. We’re at the 4th Street bridge. How do I know that? Because with the disappearance of the 6th Street bridge, I was looking around the 4th Street bridge back at 8:04 and I recognize that building behind the dancer. We then follow Santa Fe Street northwards-ish to Mateo, make a right onto Mateo and then a left onto 4th Place, I think?

8:24 We skip ahead a bit to Molina Street and make a left and then a right onto Palmetto and then another right onto what I think is probably Colyton. “Colyton”? That looks like a typo, but it’s really the street name.

8:36 We return to Hollywood for the appearance of some kind of fighter or other (Youtube comments say that it’s Urijah Faber?) and a young woman who is apparently his sister. We start on Argyle Street just north of the W hotel and make a right onto Hollywood Boulevard.

8:40 I don’t know. Probably back where we were before on Colyton, I guess? No, we’re definitely somewhere else. I see the number “500” and the word “Enterprises” but unfortunately they’re on different buildings. This is no help. Oh, good. “Enterprises” is apparently 439. Wait. We are still on Colyton, only at the other end of the street. And, yep. There’s “Enterprises” on Google Street View. The other side of the sign reads “Lidderdale.” We make a left back onto Palmetto.

8:48 Now where are we? Okay. Now we’re going down Hewitt, which we skipped before for some reason. I wonder if the road was blocked off before. Huh. There’s a police car back there. I wonder if he (or she; can’t tell at this distance) has noticed our little guerrilla music video. I used to have long hair and it never swung like that. It always kind of moved in a big chunk. Does the 8:48 dancer use any kind of product to get that or is she just lucky? I go back and forth between watching her hair and watching that police car, which pulls to a stop right behind her as the song ends. I wonder if we find out what happened next? Well, I guess the police officer was just parking. We get to the intersection of Hewitt and 4th and then turn back around and head back up Hewitt. At 8:55, the 8:52 dancer goes right past that police car and we can see that it’s a sheriff’s car. For what that’s worth.

8:56 We’re somewhere else now. I see a sign that looks like it says “Music Center” with an arrow pointing left. And upon looking it up, it seems that “Music Center” is something that a sign in Los Angles might say, so we’ll go with that. Another sign that says “Grand” and Grand is a street near the Music Center, so we’re making progress. We’re shooting looking up at this dancer for some reason. I just accidentally found our location. We’re in an underground parking garage at 4th Street and Grand Avenue. I wish I could figure out why Google Street View will suddenly send me underground or beneath streets when I don’t mean it to, even if it worked out in my favor this time.

I have a three-day weekend coming up November 9 through 11. It seems a shame to waste it hanging around in San Antonio* but I have an 17.5-year-old cat who I just boarded for the weekend of October 19 through 21 and so it’s too soon to board him overnight again.

So I really should stay pretty close to home. Like less than a three-hour drive. A map with a circle with a radius of 180 miles lets me go up Interstate to West (and thus includes Austin, Waco, and San Marcos), out east on Interstate 10 to the outskirts of Houston, includes quite a bit of the coast, including Corpus Christi, out west on Interstate 10 to Ozona, and south on Interstate 35 almost to Ozona. I can also go into Mexico as far as Anahuac (?).

I wonder what’s worth seeing in Zaragoza, Mexico. Um . . . There’s a waterfall.

I could stretch it a bit, I guess, and go to Houston Or maybe San Angelo? There’s got to be more to do in San Angelo than there is in Zaragoza.

While typing this, I’ve been playing a YouTube playlist I’m building based on the Latino radio station that I listen to and it’s on shuffle. It keeps replaying the same songs, so it’s probably bedtime pretty soon. But I need to at least send out my Pokémon Go gifts before I can go to bed.

There’s a state park in San Angelo (with the creative name of “San Angelo State Park,” believe it or not). That might be worth a trip. I may have to bring Alex in on this one. Stay tuned and I’ll let you know where, if anywhere, we decide to go.

*Speaking of hanging around in San Antonio, I need to get back to writing up the parks but I’ve forgotten where I left off. I’m considering buying a big map and posting it on the wall and highlighting all of the parks I’ve written about. But where would I post it, I ask myself. I guess I’ll let you know what I decide about that, too.

*Also because it’s the end of the first day of NaNoWriMo and I haven’t written a single word yet.

I’ve been doing work  with Amazon’s Mechanical Turk project for a few years and the thing I’ve been doing most often are surveys. I’m certainly not going to make my fortune doing this, but it gives me something to do when I’m bored and I’m making about $10 a year at it and if I can keep it up for another 100 years or so (!) it should add up to something fairly respectable.

The surveys, once in a while, ask me to check a box to prove that I’m not a robot and I’m, like, what if I am and I just don’t know it? Would I be able to plead that I’m not a robot, I’m an android? Or would that be splitting hairs?

Of course, I’m reasonably certain that I’m neither a robot nor an android and most of that certainty has to do with medicine. I mean, how many androids have wheezy lungs that respond well to albuterol and whose wheeziness can be prevented by daily doses of budesonide and formoterol? I mean, okay, “formoterol” does kind of sound like “for motor oil,” but that’s just a coincidence. I hope.

I’ve always been very mucousy in general (and my spell-check doesn’t like “mucousy”but Wiktionary has my back) which I don’t think that androids would be. I have produced so much mucus in my life that when I found that one of the key signs of cystic fibrosis is that people with cystic fibrosis taste salty because their sodium channels malfunction, I licked my arm. I’m not salty, by the way. Also, I’m older than 50 and the odds of a cystic fibrosis patient born when I was making it to 50 are slim.

Besides, I have humans who can attest to the fact that I have human insides. I’ve been cut open four times, I think (if having impacted wisdom teeth removed counts, then five) — a pilonidal cyst removal during my adolescence, a c-section, implantation of a subcutaneous chemotherapy port, and a lumpectomy.  Oh, and removal of my sentinel lymph node, but that was the same time as the lumpectomy, so maybe that occasion would be four and a half?

At any rate, that’s lots of witnesses — three surgeons**, at least three other doctors assisting, nurses and Thomas. He didn’t intend to see me cut open, but when he went to see Alex for the first time he forgot that I was cut open and when he turned around to come back to my side, there I was in all my glory. He found the process of them sewing me closed really fascinating, by the way. I’m sure if I were an android someone would have said something at some point. “Why are we cutting this android open? Androids don’t even (get pilonidal cysts, get pregnant, get cancer)?”

So, until it turns out that androids *do* get pilonidal cysts, get pregnant and/or get cancer, I’m going to continue attesting that I’m not a robot.

** The same surgeon did the lumpectomy and the port placement.

Wow. It’s been an exciting few months and as anyone who has read more than, like, two of my posts will know, I’m a terrible procrastinator and the longer you procrastinate the worse it gets. So I’m pulling up a post I started in late July and finishing it up. I may have a sequel tonight (or whenever I get back to posting here).

Remember how sad I was when Tom Petty died? I may have told this story already, but the year I was in eighth grade, we had to write up the lyrics to our favorite songs for the poetry unit in EnglishLanguage Arts. My two favorite songs that year were Tom Petty’s Refugee (from his (Amazon link ahead) Damn the Torpedoes album) and Rock Lobster by the B-52s (from their (another Amazon link) self-titled debut album (I don’t know why it says “import,” but it is (as I write this) only $9 and it’s the only CD of that album I can find on Amazon)). Good luck figuring out the lyrics to those songs on your own (I’m still a little shaky on the bridge of Refugee, to be completely honest). So instead I picked a song that I liked well enough but, more importantly, that I could understand.

But that began my love of The B-52s. I’d never had a chance to see them live, though. When I realized that they were going on tour this summer, I looked it up and the only Texas show I could find at that point was them co-headlining with Culture Club in Grand Prairie. I’ve always liked Culture Club well enough, but not had a burning desire to see them live. But I figured that I’d get three bands (The B-52s, Culture Club, and Tom Bailey of the Thompson Twins as opener) for the price of one this way.

TL;DR version of the review: The shows were awesome. All of the bands gave great shows. The acoustics in the theater, however, sucked.

I (a) don’t have multiple hundreds of dollars to spend on concert tickets at this juncture (though maybe this part of my travel writing will someday be lucrative enough that I will) and (b) didn’t know about the concert until relatively late. As a result, the only tickets I could get were fairly high up in the theater. I don’t know if we were as high in the theater as we were for Weird Al Yankovic (we were almost up against the wall at the back for that one), but we heard Al just fine. If it weren’t for the way I could feel the bass in my chest, I might as well have been watching this concert on television.

After I bought the tickets for the show in Grand Prairie I discovered that the B-52s do have a stop at the Tobin Center in San Antonio. That show is October 24, 2018 :looks at date on post: and I was so upset by the acoustics in Grand Prairie that it pretty much guaranteed that I’d want to see them at the Tobin Center. That’s the sequel I was talking about. Alex has no interest in seeing the B-52s again, so I’m going all by myself to see them in, well, about 14.5 hours from right now.

Grand Prairie is in between Dallas and Fort Worth and so the day after the concert, Alex and I drove into Dallas to visit Dealey Plaza (where JFK was assassinated). I’d been to Dealey Plaza once before, in, I want to say 2005, but Thomas has those pictures, so I took pictures and we got the conspiracy theory version of events from a street vendor. I’ll hopefully be able to put together a post on that visit soon.

6:00 Still steep. Otherwise, not even a clue.

6:12 Finally. A damn street name. What does that say? “Easter . . .?” “Eszterhas?” Is it backwards? Is it Cyrillic? Did I have a stroke? OMG.

Wait. It looks like “Eastehy Ter” so let’s look for that. Let’s look for a list of street names. “Easterly Terrace”? That’s got potential. And it’s back near Silver Lake. Is there a big open space like the two ladies at 6:08 and 6:12 are walking past? Yes, there is. Now, let’s look for the street that the 6:08 lady comes down from. I think that’s it.

So, after rewatching 6:08 and comparing it to Google Street View, it looks like the lady comes down Rockford street to Silver Lake Blvd.

Upon further reflection, I’ve found 6:00. Baxter Street. I was looking for steep streets in Los Angeles, and when I found Baxter Street, that seemed likely. And I was able to match up two palm trees and a bougainvillea to the video, so that’s 6:00 starts near Baxter and Apex and heads west on Baxter then 6:04 we continue west on Baxter and then head south on Rockford. Then we cross Silver Lake Blvd and make a left. Then at 6:12 we flip the image backwards (which is why I had so much trouble identifying where we were). This leads it to looking like she’s going north on Silver lake when she’s actually going south. Then we turn don’t-ask-me-what-direction onto Van Pelt and the image is still flipped (the stop sign is backwards). We make a right onto Silver Lake Drive. We follow Silver Lake Drive to the left (I think) and then the right (I guess).

6:20 Now we’re somewhere else. I think. Is this one flipped? Dunno. Let’s find out. I think we’re still somewhere near Silver Lake, since the garbage cans are still the same. I wonder if we’re starting farther down Silver Lake Drive. Yep. We are. And it’s still flipped. This is very disorienting. Silver Lake Drive bends to the right, becomes Redesdale Avenue, and then bends to the right and becomes Silver Lake Drive again. This is where we start. Looks like we’ll be doing this for a while, so before I take a break to watch people walking around the lake, I’ll say one thing. The barbed wire faces inwards. Traditionally, the barbed wire faces towards the ones that you want to keep from climbing the fence. What lives in the reservoir that they’re trying to keep from escaping into the neighborhood?

At 6:39, we finally leave Silver Lake Drive and make a right turn onto Tesla Avenue then another right onto Armstrong.

6:56 Now I really don’t know where we are. We went almost the entire distance around the Silver Lake Reservoir between 6:12-ish and now. Picture a slow, knowing smile creeping across my face. I know where we are now. We’re at the whole reason I started this project to begin with – the Los Angeles River. As I said a couple of quite a few posts ago, on our final day in California, I made Alex go with me to visit the LA River because I heard they were doing amazing things with it. And the only directions I could find took us way out of our way (though it was an interesting trip). When I saw the video for Happy, though, I recognized the bridge we used to leave the river and was going to put those directions in my post on our trip to the river. When I was double-checking to make sure that it was where I though it was, I saw a little tag about visiting the 24 Hours of Happy site and got this bizarre idea to go over the whole video and figure out where everything was filmed. It is now 6:56 am their time and 11:41 pm my time and now it’s time to go to bed.

Technically we visited them the other way around, but we found the Joe Davies Airpark accidentally when we were looking for the Blackbird Airpark, so Blackbird gets the priority.

This trip was an object lesson in something that Thomas and I discovered when a friend came to visit us in the mid-90s. And it was in the mid-90s, both chronologically and meteorologically. We took her to the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park and were dragging her around showing her all of the cool things we’d noticed about the buildings and the grounds during our own visits. She was more interested in the air conditioned parts, like the bookstore. The next day we took her to the botanic gardens and she was enthralled with the plants and the gardening techniques. She had a long conversation that I was completely unable to follow with one of the workers about something horticultural. Meanwhile, Thomas and I were about to keel over from the heat.

While she was talking to the worker, Thomas turned to me and pointed out that when we were at the missions, we didn’t notice the heat so much because what we were talking about was interesting to us but she was miserable. The next day, she didn’t notice the heat but we sure did!

And our trip to Palmdale definitely was an experience along those lines. I mostly noticed the heat. There was a little picnic shelter that was the only shade around and so I hung around there as long as I could before I returned to the rental car and sat with the engine and air conditioner running. Going out into that southern California desert sun made me feel even more like Gollum than usual. And the summer sun does a pretty good job of that regardless of where I am.

Alex, on the other hand, had a blast. Which was my intent. Alex is an airplane buff, so this side trip was for him specifically.

The reason why there are two open-air airplane museums in such close proximity is Plant 42, which 20-ish miles southwest of Edwards Air Force Base. Near as I can figure, Plant 42, which manufactures top-secret aircraft, is actually part of Edwards Air Force Base, despite the distance. The space shuttle Enterprise (which Alex and I saw at the Intrepid museum in New York City) was assembled at Plant 42.

Enterprise at Plant 42

NOT MY PHOTO (I was 10 years old and in a completely different state when this photo was taken). This is the Enterprise at the Edwards Air Force Base end of its trip in 1977. The photo is labeled on NASA’s website as “NASA Photo,” which my understanding of copyright law leads me to the conclusion that it is in the public domain.

The claim to fame of the Blackbird Airpark is that they have not just the SR-71 Blackbird but its predecessor, the A-12. At first Alex was disappointed that the place we ended up didn’t have even one Blackbird, let alone two, but I got onto Google and found that we were next door to where we wanted to be. So I ventured out into the summer sun to see if there was an easy way to get from one to the other. And there is. There is a gate in the fence between the two parks.

b52 with better saturation than last time

I’ve already posted this picture of the B-52 once before, but I goosed up the saturation a bit before I resized it this time.

So Alex got to explore both airparks while I hid in the air conditioning, first in the car, then in the minimuseum/gift shop once we got to the Blackbird Airpark side of the fence. As we returned to our car, I made a quick detour because I’d been seized with a desire to take a picture of the B-52 at the Joe Davies Airpark, even though The B-52s were named for a beehive hairstyle, and not the airplane.

Since I didn’t really explore much, I may ask Alex if he’d like to do a guest post.

Well, technically he’s been a graduate for almost a week based on the date on his diploma. But the ceremony was today and I puddled up about six times before the whole thing was over. Then my dad wandered away from us* and by the time the three of us were all together in the car it was rush hour and I’d lost several pounds of water weight from sweating in the summer heat.

So many of his grade school friends have moved on to private schools, moved away, been homeschooled, and one of his besties from when he was very little (they had a falling-out in middle school and never made up again) was missing from both the ceremony and the program.

Alex graduating fron kindergarten

Alex’s first graduation — from kindergarten. They had a fifth-grade graduation as well, but my photos of that are very blurry. They didn’t have an eighth grade graduation ceremony.

It was a lovely ceremony and it seems like a disproportionately high number of his fellow graduates are going on to college. The only exceptions seemed to be the ones who are going into the military. Of course, it could be selection bias. Some of the graduates didn’t walk and it’s possible that those are the ones who are going straight to work out of school.

*It’s not dementia. He’s always done things like that. Alex says we should put a tracking device on him.

Pharrell promotion time. I’ve got, like, four things that will give Pharrell money if you buy them, too, and here’s the first. Amazon Associates link this time, since I’ve spent my own money on it: the movie of Despicable Me (the soundtrack will probably be up next).

Note: I am pasting this into the interface (preparatory to scheduling it for midnight on June 11, 2018) and I still cannot swear where we are from 5:00 to 5:35:59. At first I thought it was Griffith Park, but some sites mention that the video was filmed in part at Runyon Canyon Park, but it doesn’t really look like that either, near as I can tell from Google Street View. I guess on Alex and my next trip to California I’ll make him visit Runyon Canyon Park to see if it looks familiar.


5:00. Wow. I’m stumped. We spend a lot of time in a big flat area where the ground has a kind of pinkish cast, like it’s made from pink granite or something. There are towers with what I at first thought were guy wires, but upon further watching seem to be holding up power lines. But there’s not a single landmark or sign* to be seen. There’s a fence with sharp pointy bits on the top. The fence looks kind of institutional and the pointy bits are pointing outwards towards the viewer, so, I don’t know. The Los Angeles Zoo, maybe? A college or boarding school? Boy, Beattie has been walking downhill backwards for an awfully long time. I hope he’s going to be okay.

Now there’s an I don’t know, water tower? A big green tank of some sort, at any rate. What I wouldn’t give for a street sign. A subway station. A McDonald’s.

Okay, now we have a gate. Not a fancy, identifiable gate, no. Just one of those things that they padlock shut to keep you from driving up that street. It’s probably metal but looks like PVC pipe. A chain-link fence. More chain-link fence. Pine trees. Minions.

5:36 Now we’re at Magic Johnson’s house. Even if I’d been to Magic Johnson’s house, which I haven’t, or I could tell where it is, which I can’t, I wouldn’t be saying, “Hey everyone! Magic Johnson lives at . . . “

5:40 Sigh. A residential neighborhood. No way I can. Oh, wait. Is that Vermont on the way up to Griffith Park? I think it might be. Let’s check. Eee. I got it. Now how on earth did I get it? Apparently the “bumps 15 mph” sign is more memorable than one would expect. We start at Aberdeen and then make a left onto Vermont, heading south on the sidewalk along the northbound lanes. Time to enlarge the polygon. We keep walking down Vermont to Hillhurst and then down Hillhurst to Gainsborough, where we make a left.

5:56 Now we’re somewhere completely new, I think. Let’s find out. The street name behind him looks like “Tempe” or “Temple,” which is probably just my brain filling in because I know that there’s a Temple street in LA. There is something that looks like a school or a church up there on the hill behind him, but I’ve only got 40 seconds left, so I doubt I’ll ever figure this one out. The angle just changed and we seem to be at the top of a very steep hill. I wonder what I’d get if I searched for “the steepest hill in Los Angeles. . . .”

*Well, okay. There are a couple of signs, mostly what looks like of the “put your garbage here” and the “don’t climb on this tower” varieties.


ETA: I finally found it. Well, part of it, anyhow. It sure looks to me like the 5:04 dancer passes the spot at coordinates 34.1252253,-118.2820732 in Griffith Park. The posts, the buildings, the fire hydrant, and the bollards all match pretty much exactly. Unfortunately I cannot follow the whole trail because no one has driven/walked it yet and posted it to Google Street View.

I definitely think I’m onto something here. We seem to be following Vista del Valle Drive, but I cannot figure out which direction we’re going. I’ll have to do further research.