Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Hollyweird - Then and now

Last night I went to Hollywood because my sister wanted me to act as a tour guide for a family member that was visiting from Colorado. Naturally, she wanted to see Hollywood. I hardly ever go there because it's so filled with people. Before, Hollywood was a shithole. It was filled with runaways and punk rockers that would sleep on the street and panhandle. Back then, Hollywood was grimy and dirty and, well, a shithole. But there was an honesty to the place.I remember that right smack in the middle of Hollywood Boulevard there was a "record" store that had nothing but punk rock music. The people inside wore black and had spikes and mohawks that reached into the sky. The streets were filled with junkies and strange people that talked to themselves. Sunset Boulevard had hookers and pimps could be seen on every street corner. I would imagine that tourists coming to Hollywood back then would say, "Where are the stars?". Down on the floor. Charles Bukowski did a video where he cruises down Hollywood and he describes certain bars where he got kicked out of or where he would score drugs. That what then and tourists came to Hollywood but they did not stay in Hollywood. Businesses were also local mom and pop shops for the most part. Business was also slow. Today Hollywood is THE place to be. It is the Disneyland for the socialites and socialite wanna-bees ala Paris Hilton, Lindsey Lohan, and Kim Kardashian. There are clubs that are filled to capacity. People wait for hours waiting to be seen in the hippest clubs. People look flawless and personality is optional but not a necessity. Today business is good in Hollywood. There are lots of lights and lots of people and there is action. It's Las Vegas minus the gambling. The businesses have Hollywood stars painted on them after receiving a grant from the city. This place looks like a tourist city should. People snap photographs on every corner. Celebrities can be seen fequently. Business is good although I do miss that punk rock store. It went in the direction of the vinyl record. Below is a small clip of Hollywood today. Enjoy.

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