Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Places To Go...People To Peep Vol. 1 -- South Central Edition

Walk with me...

Here it is, volume one of my super special travel guide that you will find NOWHERE ELSE....without further ado...my favorite places in South Central Los Angeles...

Louisiana Fried Chicken - NW Corner of Crenshaw Blvd./Slauson Av.

My oh my...anybody who knew me well during my tenure at Crenshaw High knew where to find me afterschool when it wasn't track season. As sure as there are always crackheads on this particular corner at all hours of the day, I was at my favorite fried chicken spot. Not only was my extra greasy two piece chicken and fries combo readily available for me to chow down on, I was also able to add a new gem to my growing CD collection nearly every day of the week as the bootleg man was never too far away. And if that wasn't enough already, just a few yards away down the Crenshaw strip, within one of the sidewalk islands is what I like to call the "Out The Trunk" shopping center. Here you can find pretty much what you would at a strip mall (clothes, shoes, watches, chains, etc.) inside various different Cadillac trunks. Think Jody in Baby Boy. Of course there is absolutely nothing "Louisiana" about this fried chicken (I'm actually starting to suspect that the entire chain is owned and operated by people of Chinese decent), but DAMN is it finger-lickin' good...

Personal Touch Car Wash - SE Corner of Florence Av./La Salle Av.

Don't dare drive your car here unless you're ready to run with the big boys. This in-the-cut car wash looks like your typical soap and suds, illegal immigrant operated, taco truck on the curb car wash but 98% of the cars that roll in here are driven by South Central L.A.'s elite baller-types. Please...you don't want to be one of those 2% idiots that pull up with their mom's Honda Civic or Ford Focus and get mean-mugged. These Mexicans are used to being tipped VERY well and they are likely to frown upon a Gringo pushing an Oldsmobile with their Grandma's social security documents and recyclable cans strewn all over the backseat. Don't do it to yourself ese. Drive in, leave your keys in the ignition and have a seat on one of the raggedy desk, dining table, or lawn chairs waiting for you (I didn't say this place LOOKED like a baller's car wash). Sitting next to you is almost sure to be a good role model, MAKE CONNECTIONS but don't embarrass yourself. You can also walk inside the small house looking thing in the corner and find a treasure trove of pirated CDs and DVDs for purchase or walk to the curb and have yourself a burrito or two. These amigos are going to take their time and I guarantee you that when they are finally done shining up your whip, you will be able to EAT OFF THE DAMN TIRES!! Oh yea...don't use the bathrooms...

Slauson Swapmeet a.k.a. Super Mall - SE corner of Slauson Av./Western Av.

This place is so damn big, it has like 20 entrances I kid you not. The Slauson Swapmeet is by far the biggest swapmeet I've ever seen and until I was about 11 years old, the only swapmeet I'd ever seen. So to all my out-of-town friends, once again, forgive me for rolling around and laughing on the floor when I walked into your so-called Inglewood, Gardena, Compton, Del Amo swapmeets. Of course, not only sheer size differentiates this swapmeet from the others, there's also the swarm of stank, Stank, STANK, STANK-A-DANK hoes walking around with their tight ass "I Love My Boyfriend" tanktops failing to cover up their many, many stomach rolls. You are almost guaranteed to see lost children running around looking for their irresponsible mothers and bow-tie Muslims selling those delicious bean pies. Sorry Malcolm X but I only want the pie. If I take that Final Call newspaper, I'm just going to end up wiping my mouth with it and throwing it away. Please don't assassinate me ("get your hands outta my pocket!!!"). Now, I don't have to tell you that 95% of the shit in here is as fake as the smiles on the faces of the Korean people selling it to you. It's up to you to have a keen eye for what's real. Three dot Gucci - FAKE. Four stripe Adidas ("Adiaas") - FAKE. You get the idea. When you're finally done rummaging through all the crap and find something you want and won't get clowned for putting on or won't turn your skin green, DO NOT pay the full price for that shit. You can always talk down the price...ALWAYS!!

Art's Chili Dogs - SW Corner of Florence Av./Normandie Av.

This is allegedly where the L.A. riots started and coincidentally, the only structure in this area that stood unscathed not only before the riots started but after they were over is a little stand called Art's Chili Dogs. Now I still don't know who the fuck "Art" is and I never really cared, his chili dogs are the SHIT dammit! His chili cheese fries are an afterschool favorite for all those local kids who refuse to eat the county food served in their cafeterias. True story: one day my school bus driver parked in front of this place, EXITED THE BUS (which i'm sure is a MAJOR violation of school bus driver policy) and had us waiting 10 minutes for his Polish Sandwich combo or whatever. I mean, this guy couldn't even wait another hour until his fucking shift was over. Sometimes I like to give him the benefit of the doubt and speculate that perhaps the school bus was his only form of transportation but then again I've seen people get off the Metro bus and spend their entire welfare checks on these hot dogs.

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