Irvine is a land of contrasts.

Under its combed lawns, Irvine holds down a mad carnival of Bosch, Max Ernst, Seraphinianus. Pressure makes it leak.

The teeth of Geraldo.

CELEBRITY TEETH! From a waiting room at a large dental laboratory. They have a showcase of these. Many.

 

this path does not workThis phenomenon is all too common in Irvine. Why? Why is there a careful path to nothing? WHY, IRVINE?

 

 

Good Los Angeles stories start in the high desert.

Airplane Nose

The Mojave desert is a mess. I love it, not in an ironic-slumming decay-hugger way, just love it. Chaparral crackles when there’s no other sound. Weird stuff grows out of nowhere and sits there daring you to find context. Ancient Mexican cowboys sell fruit to displaced urban black teenagers. The light is fierce and perfect and constant. Things break down and people just board them up and move on with their lives. All my life I’ve seen the desert as more functional, better adjusted, more of an organic whole than the city and the suburbs.

I want to say “don’t change,” Mojave, but I know you will, and I know you’ll always surprise me.

Chaparral and tears

Shakedown cruise

Desert Road #5

Costa Mesa -> Riverside -> Indio -> Salton City -> Anza Borrego -> Julian -> Escondido -> Riverside -> Costa Mesa.

Temperatures up to 112 F, climb up a mountain at 90F, lots of twisty roads, 367 miles, 35 MPG.

Yeah, I think I’ll keep the Fiesta.