Lately, more and more of you have been remarking on the length of my hair. Some of you just flat out laugh and stroke my mane, presumably for good luck, or to get a booger off your hand. Some of you will wave at me from the bar with an expression equal parts smile and facial cringe, a look I'm getting to know better by the day. And others of you dawdle up to me and feign small talk for a bit before asking me about it in as matter-of-fact a tone as your drunk ass can come up with.

So for the record: I'm letting my hair grow because I need to look like an Iranian '80s pop star for a music video I am in the process of shooting. That's right, I am sacrificing my uncommonly good looks at the altar of high art. Which is not to suggest that I don't like my long hair at times. But generally, I think it has gone about half an inch too far. No biggie: it's gonna be worth it in a couple of months when I'm a Youtube sensation.

I'm still about four shoot days away from hopping in Truck's barber chair, but on the plus side, it does give me two to three more weeks to do dumb shit like this to my hair. Blame Rose.

I don't think I'll be doing that too much though. French braids hurt.
Come to think of it, most of you probably haven't seen my music video from last summer. Sum's fair wife Nzinga directed it, and it includes a lot of people and places you doubtless are acquainted with. And yes, I rap. There aren't many things I don't do.

And finally: does anyone have access to a fabulous jacuzzi? I need one for a scene. No, we don't have set insurance. But we only need it for an hour one Saturday. Your tub will be immortalized in the annals of history forever. It will be more famous than that wooden jacuzzi Dirk Diggler was sitting in when he explained his nickname to Burt Reynolds. Mark my words. This shit is gonna be huge. Oh, and we also need a jib, and a bird or exotic animal that can be trained to sit still.


THIS HALLOWEEN @ Saints & Sinners, we present "NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD" (aka "Come Dead, Leave Deader")!!

We know alot of you nerds got your Halloween costume for this year on November 1st, 2007....so we might be too late. But for the rest of the general slackin' populous, NEXT FRIDAY we're throwing the mother of all Halloween parties ..... here's the deal:

Friday, October 31st
Saints & Sinners 10899 Venice Blvd
All Hell Breaks Loose....

-NOTHIN' BUT MUSIC FROM DEAD PEOPLE, courtesty of your friendly neighborhood laptop jockeys

Come dressed like your favorite dead person and win some life-threatening prizes, like BOTTLES OF LIQUOR AND A MAKEOUT SESSION WITH ONE OF OUR HAWT BARTENDERS!!!!(yeh bitches, I said hawt.)

How serious is this? We won't even TALK to you if you don't come in the door dead. Matter of fact, we'll put you in a closet with Greg Leonard and make him talk to you for the whole 10-2am time block. We won't even SEE you. You'll be dead to us.

This is gonna be the end of all parties.... you know why??? Cus we're borrowing Jorge's strobelight. And you know how even the most composed grown-up turns into a horny freakbeast when they're drunk, in costume, and in a strobelit bar. Shit starts to get hairy.

We plan on swimmin in hair that night..... you game?


"I Hope"....The Three Part PW Investigative Report: Pt. 1

Meet Kris. She Hopes. Our lovely and classy friend is a beloved regular at Saints & Sinners, and she Hopes so hard that she inked the inside of her bottom lip with the words "I HOPE".

Webster has a few working definitions of hope, but I think the one that has the most relevance to our investigation is the following:

intransitive verb1: to cherish a desire with anticipation <hope you notice Chip in the background of that picture wearing a clown-fro to a Rambo party>
So this tattoo on our friend's lip got me to thinking about all the times I've talked to the likes of Cooper, Nathan, Jes or any of the Wild Men of Borneo and had a conversation end with one of them saying "I Hope" with a lil bit of a twang on it.
Example #1:Sum: Hey Nathan, thanks for the smoke. I gotta get back inside and get to DJ'in. I'll see you in there.Nathan: (all twangy) I hope....
Example #2:Sum: Jes! Good to see you my man? Let's do a shot! You drinkin?Jes: (dead serious stare, mustache bristling, all twangy) I hope....
Example #3:Sum: Jorge, if you kiss me on my hand again, I'm gonna slap you as hard as I can in your chest.Ian: I hope....Jorge: (laughing and groping everything in sight) Oh my god I love you guys!!!
If you've been hanging around Saints long enough and struck up a convo with any of the aforementioned regulars in the past year or so, you know what I'm talking about. It's pretty much a tribe....a movement of people, if you will, all trumpeting this two-word phrase that speaks volumes and can mean just about anything...two words that can be applied to any conversation or situation you can imagine.
So in this three part expose', we'll tackle the tough questions:How did this start?Where is it going?What's that pot roast smell?Why is the video not on YouTube?Why are these people TATTOOING these words on their bodies?
NEXT WEEK: An insightful interview with the West L.A. founder of the movement, Nathan Hamill (or as we like to call him, Darth Vader's Grandson).



Friends, it's been a long time coming. But last weekend finally saw the opening of Parking In Rear a.k.a. Sofra Kebab Express, the new Mediterranean restaurant on Venice two blocks east of Saints, and yakking distance from my presidential compound. The local ladies amongst you may recall how the $5 clothing store off Westwood that you loved so much was recently kicked the frruck out like a squatter settlement so that the 88-cent store where nothing is 88 cents could move one door to the left. The wall that borders Habib's, that fine purveyor of withered produce, was torn down soon thereafter and the resulting rubble gazed upon for several weeks by numerous men of Arabian descent before construction commenced in earnest on what was described only in whispers: a local kebab and hookah spot.

Alas, it's Muslim-owned, so no alcohol. But that's what Saints is for. Besides, if my last post established anything, it is hopefully the fact that more drinking options are the last thing I need. The cashier at Habib's told me they'd be open until 2am-ish on weekends, which at least for last weekend has not proven to be the case - they were done by 11. But I remain pathetically excited about this addition to my constituency. Gaby's is similar and has later hours, but at six blocks away it might as well be six days away. Besides, the food tastes decent enough, but let's just say it doesn't digest well.

And that's the deciding factor ultimately: the food. Then again, if the last post established anything else, it's the fact that I'll eat anything that's not moving too much. And I'll extend that rule to anything that's not making too much noise as long as it means I don't have to leave my three-block radius. So okay, ultimately the deciding factor for me is NOT the food, but it would be nice if it tasted good.

Being half Middle Eastern, I know my Mediterranean food. And I also know you can't grade a brand new spot in Culver City against a back-alley joint in a three-thousand-year-old Istanbul bazaar without using at least a slight curve. So by that rationale, Parking In Rear is good. Nothing for Zankou or Gypsy Cafe to lose sleep over, but definitely enough to keep you local when you have a hankering for skewers of meat.

To date, I have eaten:

a chicken pita
a lamb pita
an adana kebab sandwich
a falafel plate

and a couple of sides. It all needs more lemon, salt, garlic and olive oil - in short, more flavor - to elevate it from B to A status. Hummus is the yardstick of any Med spot, and here it's curiously unaddictive. And babaganoush is nowhere on the menu.

The prices also need shaving by about 20%. At $4.50 for a regulation espresso-size Turkish coffee, it's strictly for when someone else is paying. They have a ton of interesting-looking sides, but substituting your fries for any of them will get you taxed. For a new restaurant in a working-class neighborhood, they seem a bit deluded with regards to their target demographic.

On the positive side, the adana sandwich is fucking bananas. Do not wear a long-sleeved shirt. The falafels are piping hot, crunchy outside, and soft inside. I haven't tried the lamb shank yet, but it looks promising, largely because I'm a sucker for lamb. And the Turkish coffee may be pricey but it's also perfect.

They're obviously doing something right. It's reasonably busy whenever I pass by. I saw the long-haired guy who lives in one of those green bungalows across Venice and plays his electric guitar all day on his stoop in there twice, and he looks pretty broke. Coppelia's, the Mexican spot two doors down, looks like it's feeling the pinch. I hope they don't go belly up; they do rotisserie chickens for $6.

I guess the only question left now is how long it's gonna be before the cooks start hitting on my sisters.



Hello, constituents of Palms. This is your mayor speaking. I had relinquished the title out of shame, after my building's new owners, Monem Co., began their campaign to gentrify me out of my beloved apartment, but since my neighbor Fuji decided to move in exchange for close to 20 grand in relocation money, I got the call from my representative pencilneck to tell me that they were calling the dogs off. And believe me, there was a point in negotiations when I could have taken a fat sum to hit the road myself. But ladies and gentlemen, your mayor is not for sale. I am a servant of the people.

That, or an idiot who turned down 10 grand to continue to live in a neighborhood where sweaty-faced delinquents spray chicken-scratch on your wall in broad-ass daylight. We were watching National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, for fuck's sake. Fuji claims to have caught the offenders in the act and socked two of them in their respective faces, a claim none of us can verify since we all got word of developments after the Griswolds had shuffled off-screen, but seems plausible enough considering a) Fuji was quite drunk and b) is a complete maniac. He is an ex-gangbanger from the side of L.A. that created the shit, so he takes this kind of thing extremely personally.

Being distantly related to at least one of the suspects, he stumbled down Westwood to bang on the doors of the various "unties" of theirs who normally harbor these whelps when they're not deep in the bowels of juvenile hall. I had to run upstairs and put his wife up to speed, who barrelled out the house, apron on, and brought the hammer of Thor down upon him. I feel no shame for squealing. It's the seventeen-year-olds that will flip and shoot you. They think this is all a video game.

I must be getting old, because I ran these exact streets as a sweaty-faced delinquent, and I've never heard of a P/S BFGC gang. And that was back in the '90s, when being broke was fashionable. Don't the kids want to pretend they're rich now? What is P/S anyway? It's W/S - West Side; E/S - East Side, etc. What the hell is P/S? Pouch Side? Pool Side? Pool Side Gangstas?

Later in the evening a couple of lovely ladies took me to Saints for a couple of tasty drinks, then I hit La Cabana for the pork plate. I was woken around 4am at my sisters' place next door by what was either heartburn, or something that sounded like a spraycan being shaken in the Cafe Brasil parking lot. I walked downstairs to finish the night in my own bed, but not before running into Fuji, who apparently heard the spraycan sound as well, and leapt out of bed, landed in his sneakers, and ran downstairs to catch them in the act.

I'm dead when this guy moves.


Thursday 10.2.08: A New Understanding

Many people think this is a drawing of me with a hangover. It's actually a photo. Damn that liquor.

ANOTHER NIGHT DRINKING, ANOTHER MORNING TO THE BIRDS. Doubled up on my alcohol intake post-set, playing court jester for Rojeanne and Brick, per usual. Feed the rummy drinks and watch him dance. Yelled into random ears for a while before dissolving into the blare of DJ Lee's Austin Powers retro-muzak express, exiting the bar with nary a goodbye, and waking up the following morning with my head swaying like that pendulum in the Griffith Observatory lobby that knocks a pin over ever ten minutes. Something's gotta give.

Look guys, I'll drink battery fluid for any one of you. I'm known by the bartenders as the bottomless stomach in the corner that will accept any godforsaken mixture of liquid made by mistake or refused by a customer, and I wear that badge proudly. As a child, a frown would contort my father's enormous Barnum & Bailey moustache whenever I left even a scrap of plate on my plate as a child, and he would remind me of all the hungry kids in Africa. This is why I continue to eat and drink everything in sight to this day - although I'm not sure how a starving child would benefit from a Captain Morgan's and Coke.

But things have changed, so things have to change. As of last Tuesday I'm a successful businessman, and consequently, time spent staring into space at my computer in a hung over daze is precious money out of my Dickie shorts pockets. I am not going to be "the sober DJ", just like I'm not going to take a shit after taking a shower. But there has to be a way to minimize the damage, other than drinking less and not mixing liquors. OK, I guess I just answered my own question.

I would be insincere if I didn't make the point that I have a new respect for you guys behind the bar. Dan fed me a Chartreuse (thanks Ian for the spelling correction) the other week, which tasted like the contents of an ashtray dumped into a small glass of water. To drink so much crazy shit so often and remain relatively functioning human beings, we must not be made of the same stuff.


Friday 9.26.08: Dear Denny's, Please Consider Adding "Balls" To Your Menu and Kissing Them

They might fit in right nice...just consider it after a looksie. Donkey
Now compare.

For some reason, last Friday, we broke the sanctified ritual of post-Saints grubbery at Cinco De Mayo. And, to add more blaspheme to the last scene, we broke the ritual to eat at BUMBACLOT Denny's. Maybe it was the persuasive ways of Malky's little sister Rojeanne and her sister-by-another-mister, Brick.....maybe we just felt like breaking routine. Who knows. Either way, we turned our back on the one that's never done us wrong, to go to the one that's never done us RIGHT. Before I even touch on balls-taste of Denny's, allow me to give you a list of reasons why you need to love that Cinco De Mayo shit just like we do:

1-There are four thousand, seven hundred and ninety-three items on the menu, and every combination of any food you can imagine. It's a delightful kaleidescope of blue-collar, Mexican cuisine. Bitches always wanna complain about not having enough choice on a menu. At Cinco de Mayo, they solve this problem by giving each and every ingredient it's own place on the menu. You want Lettuce with One Nacho and a side of cocktail sauce? Boom. Just order the #45. Oh, you want a whole radish, draped in a refried bean paste? Cinco de Mayo's here for you. Just order the #756.

2-You'll never find a hard taco shell so tasty, crunchy, and ultimately delicious anywhere. You bite into that shit and harps begin to play. They could put pieces of wet carpet and baby diaper in that shell, and I'd still come back the next week. Running African fast.

3-That kinda butchy lady behind the counter with the Mohawk is sweet as pie.

5-It's always open, and never smells like mopwater....no matter what time you walk in. And they're always mopping.....no matter what time you walk in.

12-They have murals of Aztec warriors with double-jointed kneecaps ALL OVER THE WALLS. You can eat your octopus (yeh son, they got it), gaze at the epic and storied history of the peoples our Mexican cousins are descended from, and marvel at how European they look. I advise doing this with a chicken taco plate.

So there you have it. TWELVE reasons to keep it neighborhood and roll witchya boys after a long night of gettin' screamed at by Truck.

Now, on to Denny's.

We sat down at the table and talked in groans for 15 minutes while we waited for our food. No words, just groans, because we were that hungry. Although I do remember Rojeanne telling me she would just give me her dog with no questions if I asked her for it, because it was just a dog and might as well be a wind chime. When the food finally did come, it kinda looked like a tall, fat walrus swam from the sea, laid on our table and cut himself open. Against my better judgement, I ordered chicken fingers. There was no chicken in my fingers, and I would have preferred they just gave me a cup of loose batter, rather than fry it and try to pass it off like chicken fingers.

Rojeanne had some kind of cavalcading burger carousel that looked like four small novels with onions in them.

Brick... I can't remember what she had, but it was probably bogus too.

Malky had the worst thing I've ever seen. That shit looked like some Depression-era bread, baked in lard, and covered in a cascade of cheese, mushrooms, sauce, a swatch of wool and some potatoes.

There was a plate of pancakes in the middle of the table.

We ate heartily with little to no complaints, and conversation was normal. Even though the food tasted heavy and unrelenting, and coated our insides with so much grease it slowed down our hearts, we ate. When we were done though, we were back to talking in groans, and this time it wasn't because we were hungry.

When I got home, I tossed and turned in the night and woke up feeling a column of warm, solid and unmoving fries in my throat. If I could've spoken....the three words I would've spoken in a firm and cold voice, while my wife lay next to me sleeping wistfully, would have been

"F#*k you Denny's"

Never again.
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