L.A. & O.C. Road Test

I had some work done on Sparkle (tune-up, etc.) and wanted to get her on the road to check everything out.  500+ miles of solid driving around Los Angeles & Orange County and I’m happy to report she is A-OK.  I’ve got about 160 photos to add to the website — and a couple dozen here for the blog.  Rather than break them up into my standard post-per-day, I’ll just do one jumbo post.

Surely, this sign at Hart’s Jewelers & Pawn in Van Nuys had much nicer panels before this kooky paint.  But it’s still nice:

The Panorama Theatre in Panorama City — now a church but the sign lives:



I finally got to the Gordon R. Howard Museum in Burbank to see a few things.  They have the “other” Don’s Coffee Shop sign (I think I posted the other one a few weeks ago here that’s at the Valley Relics Museum:


They also have some fun statues — a Bob:


A Harbie — other Harbies & their history here:


And a cool snarly boxer:



The Highland Park Bowl in Los Angeles (Highland Park neighborhood) has kind of a crappy modern-looking sign but the bowling pin/ball are fun.  I really wish I’d gone inside — my GOD!



A nice rusty/crusty in Highland Park:



I shot this sign in downtown L.A. for my pal, Heather David, who unearthed this advertisement of what the sign looked like originally:




Some more downtown L.A. shots — the Roxie Theatre:



The Cameo Theatre:



The former Arcade Theatre — now more of a pigeon perch.  But there is hope since many downtown signs are being restored in recent years:



I’m always relieved to see that this sign is still there:



At the Hotel Bristol, I think:



More L.A. stuff — plastic fantastic:



One of my fave L.A. signs.  I pray they leave it alone — it’s the patina that makes it — the blue, the rusty golden brown, the sweet shape…


Just down the street — the Gilbert Hotel:



The Talpa Restaurant — L.A. but nearly Santa Monica:



Long Beach — I must have driven by this sign a hundred times over the years and then just noticed it.  It’s on the side of a building that now houses a massage parlor:



It got cloudy for a bit, as you can see from this photo, but most of the weekend was glorious weather.  This one in Hawthorne:



More Los Angeles.  The protective metal mesh kind of adds something, doncha think?



What the HELL?  This rooftop sign got crushed and I have no idea how:


Here’s that the sign looked like just last year.  What could do that?  A combo of wind and rust?



Pretty sun shadows and zigzag edges.   We may never know the original color or wording:



It looks like Maria’s gave way to El Pollon.  I love the “this-is-it!” arrow:



And lastly, Party Snacks Liquor in Whittier:



That’s a wrap but I’ll be back with another post soon from Central & Northern California.  I’ll be heading to San Francisco at the end of the month for the NeonSpeaks three-day festival (and sneaking in a day or two of photos before that).  If you love signs and you can stir up the time and cash, you NEED to go.  I’ve been asked to speak about Sputnik signs and Roto-Spheres.  I hope you can make it!

Until then — more photos over at Flickr from this weekend’s trip:

Happy Trails,
dj & the dogs

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