Tuesday, August 17, 2010

LA Artist

Ok. I'm up and running again. My internet is alive and well.

As most of you know, I moved to LA over a week ago. Studio City to be precise. So far, I haven't got lost as many times as I thought I would (thank you photographic memory) and once I even found my way home from being lost. No iphone, no calling alex in a panic, not even a tear. I literally deduced from location that such main street was a main street near my apartment and taking it till I hit another familiar street would at least get me in the right direction. And it did. And I didn't cry.

Small victory of the day.

Being in LA is completely strange. I lived close to it for most of my adolescent life in Covina, 45 minutes away, off the 210. 5 years later spent in San Diego, 2 and half hours away, the 5 to the 8, I'm here: in the thick of it.

To give you all a large landmark of where I am: Universal Studios. And the Hollywood Bowl. Both are very close. And for all you savvy bar hoppers, I'm a 2 second walk from Fox and Hounds.

But what's really been exciting nowadays is my new level of coffee-making. Now, I'll be honest and tell you that I applied for 20+ jobs as an assistant, personal assistant, and office manager. It wasn't until I had about 2 weeks left before the big move that I succumbed and applied for a barista listing on craigslist.

"Artistic Baristas."

A new cafe was opening up in Los Angeles and they were looking for more than just a barista. They wanted an artist who happen to know how to pull a good espresso shot. And yes, I fancy myself an artist. Telling a story, even more so a good one, is an art. (By the end of any story I've written, I got hair pulled, teeth grinded, and an exasperated last breath in the form of a final period. Writing is a cruel, rewarding art)

So I applied. I applied because I thought to myself how cool it would be to work with all new equipment. I love Peabody's but our tools are constantly showing their wear and tear. Thinking of a shiny new tamper (what you smush the espresso grinds with before you pull the shot) was enticing.

An hour after submitting my resume and small paragraph of "this is me," I had an interview.

Well, ok!

2 interviews later, and hours of traffic, I was hired.

Paper or Plastik (the k is style, I know, but I swear to you we're not cool-pretentious, we're cool-hey why not a k?)

The place is a work of art. I kid you not. You can tell immediately that artists designed and constructed this small, beautiful cafe. No detail has been left behind. I knew from the moment I walked in during my first interview, even in the mist of construction, that I wanted to be a part of this space.

I wanted to exist in it. And to work in it.

Now this is surprising because I was going to retire. Years of the same thing everyday had me ready for something different.

And well, life gave me just that.

Yes, I essentially do the same thing: make you damn good coffee. But with Paper or Plastik and Intellgentsia, I'm making you damn fuckin' good coffee.

When you come in, you'll get it. The standards are higher, the quality unnerving, and the mere experience of it will be unique. That's what getting me: the uniqueness. I am a part of this new movement of the coffee industry, known to the coffee connoisseurs as the "3rd wave." (now if only feminism could follow as swiftly... come on Black Widows!)

I am a part of a beginning. And it feels right for who I am now, and what I want now.

It is a surreal thing to understand the forces of what you want and who you are. We constantly phase in and out of chapters in our life. But most times, it's hard to remember or even recognize when the beginning actually starts.

This beginning is so clear I have nothing left to do but chuckle at it because it seems so familiar. Like I was here before. A deja vu you feel instead of see.

I know I sound a bit off

but hey,

I'm an artist.


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