Riverside Drive #2

Riverside Drive

Alessandro down to Riverside. Riverside to Fletcher. The new, yet-to-be-opened LA River Bike Path down ’till it ends, and then back up through Frogtown to Riverside, Alessandro, and home. 8 miles.

Alessandro runs alongside the 2 freeway, separated by a wall. There are usually a few folks living in broken down RVs. Alessandro is a world of its own.

The second part of the stretch of Riverside between Alessandro and Fletcher has a few empty lots on which the remnants and ruins of old houses remain. Broken down, winding stairs that quickly lead to nowhere, a handful of back walls of garages dug into the hills. A couple of overgrown, reclaimed-by-nature lots the fronts of which are strewn with out-the-car-window trash.

Frogtown is Frogtown. It’s a strange, semi industrial, partially populated by artists, slightly ill tempered sliver of a working class neighborhood that kinda wants to be left alone.

This run is one that’s full of visual gems for me. There’s not much I can say about it; it’s all about what I see. Here are someone else’s words about running this area.

4 replies
  1. elodie
    elodie says:

    Found Me makes me laugh! It’s so unexpectedly light-hearted next to the irony of No Trespassing, and the texture of the paint on those stairs. Those buoyant bits of froth give me hope.

    I didn’t get around to asking the first time you posted about it, but what are the timeline issues regarding Yankey Go Home?

  2. geoff
    geoff says:

    Found Me rules. There’s a story behind it, but I forget what it is. It’s right next door to the no trespassing stairs. I’m sure that chain is very effective at keeping people out. There’s a guy who maintains those stairs for some reason. I guess he’s doing his part to keep LA tidy.

    The timeline issues regarding Yankey Go Home are that this is basically in the back-end of Chinatown. Assuming (and it’s not a safe assumption) that it was written by someone Chinese, the Yankey got there first. If it’s written by one of the Central American immigrants who might live in the area, the Chinese and the Yankey got there before them. And it can’t be aimed a gentrying yuppies because they haven’t gotten there yet. Only if it’s written by a Native American does it work, timeline-wise. The misspelling suggests Yanqui, so I’m thinking it’s a Latin American expression of anti-USA. I’m not exactly noted for my patriotism, but I can be a stickler for language, and while I applaud the sentiment on a global scale, Yankey Go Home isn’t the appropriate way to express that sentiment when in the US. This is, after all, the home the rest of the world wishes the Yanqui would go home to.

  3. elodie
    elodie says:

    Maybe he owns the stairs, or has ambitions to own them? That could make for interesting fiction. What does he do — sweep, paint? And have you spotted him?

  4. geoff
    geoff says:

    Yeah, I’ve run by him a few times. He doesn’t look like he enjoys maintaining the stairs, to be honest. More like it’s some duty he’s obligated to perform, something that might’ve seemed like a good and noble idea at one time but is now just a chore he wishes he’d never signed on for.

    The job of maintaining stairs to nowhere that no one is allowed to walk on is sort of quixotic in a minor way, anyhow. Maybe his idealism has faded.

    Still, it’s nice that he does it. He’s probably unaware, and might not give a rat’s ass if he did know, but his efforts have been noted, if only here.


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