I thought that it might be useful to publish an “episode guide” of my California Fool’s Gold series of explorations.
When I explore a new community, I usually rely upon the vox populi which is why anyone may vote for what communities they’d like to become the subject of future articles by clicking here for Los Angeles neighborhoods, here for Los Angeles County communities, and here for Orange County communities. Check back occasionally for new episodes — next up, if all goes according to plan, is Westlake.
If the reader wishes, they may also read brief introductions to all of the communities in the poll which are organized by regional primers corresponding to the 22 Kingdoms of the Southland: Angeles Forest, The Antelope Valley, The Channel Islands, Downtown Los Angeles, The Eastside, The Harbor, Hollywood, The Mideast Side, Midtown, North Orange County, Northeast Los Angeles, Northwest County, The Pomona Valley, The San Fernando Valley, The San Gabriel Valley, The Santa Monica Mountains, The South Bay, South Los Angeles’s Eastside, South Los Angeles’s Westside, South Orange County, Southeast Los Angeles County, The Verdugos, and The Westside.
Season 2 (2008)
The Arts District
East Los Angeles
Season 5 (2011)
Santa Catalina Island and Avalon
Season 8 (2014)
Little Italy (San Diego)
Season 9 (2015)
If you’re a fan of this sort of thing (or you’re just temporarily mesmerized by the computer screen in front of you) you might also enjoy my column over at KCET called Block By Block in which I explore our vast Southland by foot, bike, bus, train, subway, or ferry. As with Eric’s Blog, Block By Block also often feature my maps which I create as Pendersleigh & Sons Cartography.
Other series that I write (or intend to) include the following:
Fastfood Undead — Iconic fast food restaurants re-born as something more interesting.
Greater Streets — Close readings of Los Angeles’s greatest public asset, from one terminus to the other.
High Rising — Signs of urbanization through often anonymous verticality.
Homes Fit for Heroes — Cons, pros, and profiles of public housing projects.
Mini-Mallism — The obscure histories of suburbia’s overabundant retail spaces.
No Enclave — Visiting and exploring the non-physical ethnic enclaves of the Southland.
Nobody Drives in LA — With bicycles, buses, ferries, planes, rideshares, sidewalks, subways, taxis, trains, Los Angeles is no place for a car.
Office Park Life — Pondering those shiny suburban monoliths designed to suppress distractions — and collect souls.
Red Deserts — Examining industrial landscapes and architecture.
Southland Parks — From the largest urban park in the US to pocket parks and parklets, one park at a time.
There It Is, Revitalize It — Rivers used to run through it before disastrous floods led to their being enslaved and entombed — and now poised for a comeback.
Those Useless Trees — California is home to the tallest, the biggest, the oldest, and the most photographed tree. Celebrity tree gossip!
Urban Rambles — Los Angeles is far too large to walk across — but it is endlessly full of areas ripe for aimless walks.
Where Fools Fear to Tread — Occasionally I get to explore places outside of California.
Eric Brightwell is an adventurer, writer, rambler, explorer, cartographer, and guerrilla gardener who is always seeking writing, speaking, traveling, and art opportunities. He is not interested in writing advertorials, clickbait, or listicles and jobs must pay more than slave wages as he would rather write for pleasure than for peanuts. Brightwell’s written work has appeared in Amoeblog, diaCRITICS, and KCET Departures. His work has been featured by the American Institute of Architects, the Architecture & Design Museum, the Craft & Folk Art Museum, Form Follows Function, Los Angeles County Store, Skid Row Housing Trust, and 1650 Gallery. Brightwell has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, Huffington Post, Los Angeles Magazine, LAist, Eastsider LA, Boing Boing, Los Angeles, I’m Yours, and on Notebook on Cities and Culture. He has been a guest speaker on KCRW‘s Which Way, LA? and at Emerson College. Art prints of his maps are available from 1650 Gallery and on other products from Cal31. He is currently writing a book about Los Angeles and you can follow him on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
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