Saturday, December 23, 2006


Now that I no longer live in the OC, I find that I have a whole new kroozin' ground. Twice this week, I found time to travel the streets and boulevards of the San Fernando Valley. As I already knew, from time spent here in the past, SFV is a very interesting area, unlike any other.

This past Monday, I took a drive in the Burbank area. I lived in Sun Valley (a small district of El Pueblo de Los Angeles) back in 1966-1967. 'Twas just north of what was then called Lockheed Airport--now Bob Hope Airport. Part of my drive ranged through the Sun Valley area, though most of it went back and forth in Burbank proper.

Burbank, home of Disney Studios and Warner Bros, not to mention the Pickwick Center, which includes the Pickwick Equestrian Center (now the LA Equestrian Center), the Pickwick Bowl, the Pickwick Ice Center and Pickwick Gardens. While driving around in Burbank, one finds dozens of independent small businesses of every kind lining the streets, and hundreds of well-maintained dwellings everywhere. If there's a slum in Burbank, I haven't found it.

Burbank calls itself the "Media Capital of the World."

Today, I drove around the western part of SFV. I went through Sherman Oaks, Van Nuys, North Hills, Northridge (center of the 1994 Earthquake), Winnetka, Reseda, Tarzana, Encino, then back to Sherman Oaks.

It was quite a drive. The weather was perfect: cool, sunny, a little windy with the streets full of Christmas shoppers in their BMWs and SUVs. This part of the Valley looks a little more like the OC, with more shopping centers with Mervyns, Targets and Ralphs. This part of the Valley has wider boulevards than the eastern part, and boasts more mature trees than does the OC. It also has a far wider variety of small businesses and ethnic eateries.

Another neat thing: Most of SFV is laid out on a rectangular grid. Most of the boulevards either run north-south or east-west and run arrow-straight for miles and miles. If I get lost and find, for example, Victory Boulevard, I can drive along it for ten miles or more until I find Woodman. Then it's a right turn for a couple of miles and I'm a few short blocks from home. You just can't get lost.

Most of the Valley is in El Pueblo de Los Angeles, unfortunately. There was an attempt by SFV to secede and form a separate city a few years ago, but they allowed the entire city to vote on it. Since a huge portion of the most productive Angelenos live in the Valley, and a large portion of the non-productive live in other parts of the city--all of whom got to vote on the proposition--the attempt failed.

The LA city's parasites couldn't keep up the degree of corruption without all that SFV tax money coming in.

Well, that's apparently the cost of living in SFV.

Large parts of SFV remain unexplored, and I plan to take more of these drives as often as I can. After all, I've only found two Mongolian BBQ joints in the Valley, and I'm still looking for the perfect pizza, a good indoor pistol range and a relaxing coffee shop.

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California


Ol' BC said...

Do they still allow American citizens to have guns in California? Either way, the indoor shooting range may be tough to find. Good luck though.

Col. Hogan said...

Guns? Did I say shooting range? I meant golf! Indoor driving range, of course!

Yeah, that's it. I was looking for an indoor driving range.