January 18, 2005

Nothing Beats Being There

I'm trolling L.A. Observed and come across this gem of first-hand -- and short -- reporting by my occasional compadre Marc Cooper:

Most of the stranded and near-drowned victims of this week’s diluvia have gotten their 15 seconds or so of celebrity — thanks to the orgiastic "team coverage" provided by L.A. television (reporting on rainstorms seems to offer the perfect level of intellectual complexity for our local broadcast-news puppies).

But then there was that poor 30-something guy in a drenched leather jacket Monday out on Sunset near Vine whose plight went almost completely unnoticed.

As I sat idle in a bottleneck, my wipers hopelessly sloshing the water back and forth, I could make him out standing in the middle of the eastbound left-turn lane. His aged Toyota had apparently been rear-ended by the gold Lexus behind him. As the snarled traffic honked away, he was furiously yelling and pounding the driver’s window on the Lexus, challenging the driver to get out. A half-minute later, the Lexus door finally opened and a dark-haired woman 10 years his senior and trundled in a brown knit sweater cautiously emerged.

The leather-jacket guy’s rant only escalated, and he suddenly grabbed at the woman’s shoulder. Thinking of the Hollywood Division station only a few blocks away, I grabbed my cell phone and punched in 911. But before I could hit the "send" button, the woman shook off his hand, dropped her right arm way low, and then snapped back with a looping Sunday punch right in the guy’s kisser.

The single, direct hit shut his mouth, buckled his knees and sent him flat out onto the asphalt. As surprised onlookers moved in to sort out the mess and the traffic in front of me once again began to crawl, he lay sprawled, face-up to the indifferent rain.

There's more on the Southland rains in L.A. Weekly.

Posted by Tim Porter at January 18, 2005 06:25 PM