Monday, July 21, 2008

Being Back

Is going okay, although it took me a full week to get over my jetlag. For most of this week, I was waking up in the middle of the night and lying around for hours. After a few hours of this, I would usually get up and eat something (I've heard that it doesn't help to just lie there for hours if you can't sleep) and then try to get myself tired. This usually didn't work. For the first time since I got back, this morning I felt human when I woke up.

We had dinner at a place in Atwater called Viet Noodle Bar last week. I understand it's relatively new, and its owners have some connection to the people that own Gingergrass in Silverlake. Anyhow, Viet features one long communal table running down the center of the restaurant, and another long bar to the right side of the restaurant. The only decoration is a room-long shelf of books on the right wall of the restaurant, facing the long bar. The books appear to be someone's collection of used books, but unlike the books you see on the furniture at, say, Crate & Barrel or Pottery Barn, someone had spent a lot of time picking out all of these books. The books right in front of me were by Rushdie, Kafka, Wittgenstein, Hume, (Denis) Johnson, Nemirovsky, Hunter S. Thompson, et al. There didn't appear to be a crappy book in the entire 12 or 15-foot long row of books. I don't think they were for sale. It did strike me as a strange but completely appropriate type of interior decoration for a restaurant in the Atwater/Silverlake area. Usually, people pick out paintings or knick knacks to create atmosphere, to demonstrate a particular sense of taste or style; here they were using their choices of titles to create their style. I feel like I've seen many paintings lately in Eagle Rock and environs of LP collections; the point of the painting appears to be the compilation; the collection of titles, the juxtaposition and selection creates the mood, etc. This type of thing feels very early 90s, but I guess it makes sense that it's here now.

There's a coffin showroom just down the block from Viet. It features fancy caskets, some of them held up on stands or attached to the wall, positioned at an angle, open, just waiting.

We saw "The Dark Knight" yesterday. I have mixed feelings about it (3 1/2 tentacles) -- review coming shortly.

1 comment:

Kris said...

Your post card from Hong Kong still hasn't arrived for some reason.