This will be the first in a series of posts about my experiences, travels and even occasional travails as an Angeleno trying to keep it green. 

As an underground chef in L.A. people always ask me how I do it! Surviving on foot in a city that prides itself on vehicles. Without a car to transport or a motorcycle to look dangerous, I choose a different direction. I go green. Los Angeles is the mythical ‘giant squid’ of cities and attending its tentacles can keep you travel bound all day. It takes at least an hour to go anywhere or do anything! I’d always heard about the traffic but not until I sat in it did I realize the cartoonish absurdity of all those people trying to fit their cars on the same path. And it is like this almost 24/7.

I must say when I’m at the Griffith Observatory after a hike, those long streams of glimmering glass windshields on Virgil, Vermont, Normandie, Western, etc. hum with a hyper-real note of future primitive as they stretch into infinity. Like they’ve always been there and always will. Yes, there is natural beauty in LA but most people only see it from their car windows. On closer inspection the truth (and the truth of what their cars are doing to this natural beauty) rends out. Walking the Silver Lake reservoir for the first time, years ago, I ran my fingers along the needles of an evergreen and they came away black with soot. Try it. Walk down Vermont and touch a tree.

An avid proponent of public transportation, I can get anywhere on the bus and subway. I go to production meetings in Santa Monica, Culver City, Venice, North Hollywood and I get to them via PT. It may take me longer to get there, but really I have more time to do the things I enjoy doing. While other people sit locked in their cars cursing at traffic, I am reading, sending emails and making phone calls. But when in my hood? I walk!

In addition to keeping me in shape and mentally stimulated, I find that I can accomplish almost any task in my own neighborhood. I’m five minutes (walking time) from multiple amazing markets mostly Thai and Armenian but there’s also a Ralphs, CVS, Rite Aid, Fed Ex, etc. Every Thursday afternoon at Hollywood and Western a small farmer’s market opens. Every Sunday on Vermont near Franklin there’s the Los Feliz farmers market. Every Saturday in Silver Lake on Sunset is an amazing farmers market where vendors sell all types of clothing, comestibles, books, vinyl… you name it. All of these are easily reached via bus, bike or walking. I CHOOSE to live in this area 1) to be close to the park and 2) because this is primarily where I work. I think making choices like this are part of living responsibly. 

You can read about what Isaiah Frizzell does at pHeast.
Comments are encouraged!

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Comment by Kate Findley on March 12, 2013 at 11:28pm

I'm glad you mention choice and how that relates to public transportation. So many people in LA think they HAVE to have a car and use their commute as an excuse, when in fact there are tons of places to live where owning a car is entirely unnecessary. In fact, in places like Hollywood and Downtown it's easier to rely on the bus than deal with the hassle of parking. Taking the bus is not impossible and it's not horrible; you can get almost anywhere in LA by bus and sometimes it's even fun!

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