Your Escape from Adult Life

BE      A Kid for a day  

DO     Mission Street, South Pasadena  

HAVE   Magical Wonder & Silliness

Being a grown up is serious and boring. Unless you stop doing that adult shit and take a play-day for yourself , all your hard earned money can’t buy the  “natural high” you felt when you were a kid.  I realized this in a lawyer’s office while writing a will for people who would get all that money I worked my ass off for in case I suddenly left the planet. The lawyer was asking me all kinds of responsible grown up questions like, “in the events of your death, how would you like the remains of your body handled?” If anyone ever asks you that question, this is your “fuck it” moment. It’s the moment when you realize that you have to go back in time –when all you cared about was fun.

“There’s  this job I got fired from,” I told the lawyer,  “Deliver my body to my ex- bosses office and leave it on her desk. ”  More serious questions followed.

“Where would you like your final resting place to be? Is there a particular place you’re fond of?”

“I love shoes. Leave me in a shoe store.”

Remember kids, just because you’re all grown up, you don’t have to give up your magical sense of wonder and your silliness. Steal random moments of playtime whenever you can. It’s healthy. When life gets too freakin’ serious you need to lighten up. If you’re looking for cool stuff to do in Los Angeles here’s what I recommend: 

WHERE TO GO: Mission Street, South Pasadena, California

Grab some friends, get into the back seat of your Mom’s station wagon and ask her to drive you to South Pasadena.  You can also take the Gold Line Metro train to Mission Street from Union Station or any place in Los Angeles that you can catch a train or a bus.  Kids shouldn’t drive, so you shouldn’t drive either—but if you do, theres plenty of free parking all around the neighborhood.

Arrive early. Have an ice cream Sunday for breakfast and browse vintage toys and candies from the 1940’s, 50’s and 60’s at the Fair Oaks Pharmacy.  It’s an old fashioned place from the 20th century where teenagers hung out at the soda fountain and played songs on the juke box. As your first sugar rush of the day catapults you into over-drive, you’ll discover loads of retro toys and games that made kids happy before video existed. Marvel at the old-school brands of candy that rotted your parents teeth and gave them so many cavities that dentists were getting richer than Trump. A huge assortment of humorous novelty gifts are there too, for that immature adult who has everything.  If they don’t have a pack of chewing gum that says “coffee makes me poop” or a Wonder Woman lunch box, then get them one.

Help Decorate a Rose Bowl Parade Float 

Ever wonder who makes those gigantic parade floats in the Rose Bowl Parade? Volunteers. If you and your friends are in the neighborhood any time from October to the end of December you can show up, grab a glue gun and help create a colossal masterpiece made entirely of plants and food. Volunteers are needed to add flowers, seeds, and other materials that will turn the float into a beautiful work of art. Decorating starts in October, culminating in “Deco Week” December 26th-31st. You have to sign up ahead of time, online, so you’ll have to go to their website (listed at the bottom of this blog) and see their decoration schedule. You’ll be surprised to find people there to help from all parts of the country. The work area feels like a giant art class with no teacher in the room.  When the famous Rose Bowl Parade is on TV you jump up and down and shout, ” See that float?? I helped make it!!”


Make Fun Stuff at SPACE Arts Studio

At SPACE Arts Studio you can transform all kinds of materials into everything from one of a kind birdhouses, to cool wearable art you made out of your Dad’s old t-shirts at SPACE. For a modest fee you can hang out and play with art materials without having any previous experience or art talent. Just be willing to make a mess and don’t try to accomplish anything other than fun.

Bike or Hike Adventure — Launch Your Imagination

Remember when you rode your bike past places that set your imagination on fire?  You can do that any time you hop on a bike and daydream as you roll along a snaking path to see where it goes. Wander through nature. Let your mind swirl around all things unimportant.  The Arroyo Seco Bike Path runs about 2 miles between South Pasadena and northeast Los Angeles, offering views of the LA skyline and the distant mountains. It begins south of Pasadena Avenue and travels southwest along its namesake stream for its entire route.

Dream and gaze at the shadows and colors.  The pathway travels under the cover of tall sycamore and oak trees and offers access to Hermon Park (also known as Arroyo Seco Park) and Ernest E. Debs Regional Park. South of Avenue 49, you can also take a pedestrian bridge over the Arroyo Seco to reach Sycamore Grove Park.

Your journey will end at the Montecito Heights Recreation Center. This is less than a third of a mile from the must-see Heritage Square Museum (3800 Homer Street), which interprets 100 years of Southern California history—from 1850 to 1950—through a series of preserved Victorian-era homes. Since you’re a kid, you know these old houses are haunted, and theres plenty of ghost gossip about those dead cowboys and aristocrats.  Lose yourself in your own fantasies. No telling what will happen then. Since it’s LA, who knows– you might even come up with an idea for or a TV pilot. Any number of ideas can bubble up in your brain after its had a hardy day of play.

To find out about the next batch of  “themed” adventures in Los Angeles, subscribe to this blog.  For Websites and photos… Read More