Man Without Qualities

Wednesday, October 29, 2003

Los Angeles Pentimento

So much is being written on the Southern California wildfires that any more seems like obvious surplus.

But among all the horrors, burnt out homes, ghastly skies and weird magenta solar discs in the gloaming, there is a minor amusing consequence of the fires: a lot more people seem to be wearing eyeglasses, even at the gym.

It is just not comfortable to wear contact lenses in Los Angeles now. Heck, even my unadorned lasiked eyes were smarting yesterday.

Which seems to be why the crowd in the weight room disturbingly resembled the students toiling in some Cal Tech library instead of some casting call for, say, Abercrombie & Fitch. The soot and noxious gases in the air seem to have revealed the city's inner nerds.

This phenomenon was drawn to my attention by my personal trainer - who does not wear glasses. Yes, this being Los Angeles, one has a personal trainer - in this case an imposing, lapsed rugby player and doughty Scott named Josh Long, who is full of good training tips and other observations. Of course, this being Los Angeles, one's personal trainer is trying to become an actor/model. And, as Josh also pointed out yesterday, he is making some headway - in this case by exploiting his training in some Edinburgh pub.

The Last Drop? Josh didn't say.

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