Sunday, February 27, 2005

Yeh Yeh, Oscar day! According to Emil, this is the day half the world's TV-viewing folks sigh and wish they were Angelenos. And then, when some of them actually make it to LA, they go around in circles trying frantically to search for the glamorous place that they saw every year in the Oscars. LA is really glamorous in so many ways, but the Oscars show is uber-glamour, it is such hyperreality that everything else is bound to be disappointment. Till about two years ago, the Oscars used to be held in my very own backyard. Well, almost. The legendary Shrine auditorium is about a 10 minute walk from my house (better to say 2-minute drive since that's how everyone measures distances in LA). Not being much of a celebrity gawker, I never used to try and join the crowds lining up to take a peak at the red carpet line-up.

It used to be really amusing to watch the show on TV then. The cameras panning on the outlandish gowns and acres of botoxed foreheads and collagened lips, but no shots of the run-down Dennys right across the street or the Felix autodealer behind Shrine. Of course 5 minutes down the road is South-central, home of most West coast hip-hop and some rather notorious gang wars from the 90s. For us mousy grad students, our best night out adventure is to drive to the 24-hour Krispy Kreme donuts on Crenshaw in South-central at around 2 or 3 a.m. for donuts. No one to be seen except for the cops. I finally figured out that the reason there are so many all-night donut shops is because cops eat donuts all the time. And it's not just a stereotype, they really do (and drink Starbucks coffee, there's a line of police cars outside Starbucks all the time).

But I digress. So Emil and S and I have to gather some popcorn, chips and soda, curl up on his couch and watch the show. I think my special interest this year is to watch out for Mr. Director (see last post). I don't think he'll win, I think he's more of a rising star and sentimental favourite Martin Scorcese is in the reckoning. Or probably Clint Eastwood. But he's great eye candy (in a very geek-crush kind of way). His face is very elegant, very chiselled, and his features refined. He should have been reading Greek classical poetry to students on a sailboat off Despotiko, instead he's an honoured guest in the ultimate kitsch fest. C'est la vie.

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