SarahAnnA little over a year ago, an article headlined Los Angeles and Its Booming Creative Class Lures New Yorkers was published in the New York Times style section. Seemingly written solely to troll LA residents, the piece name-dropped “in-season Zambian coffee,” the downtown Ace Hotel, and Moby’s house here as evidence that LA was finally suitable for New York tastes. “Los Angeles is widely acknowledged to have become strikingly more cosmopolitan in recent years,” the author noted, going on to list brioche tarts and barrel-aged rye cocktails as proof that Southern California was a region on the rise.

The bemused furor that arose on social media died down, but not before journalist, podcaster, and famed caftan enthusiast Ann Friedman wrote a parody for the LA Times. In her take, Friedman expresses shock and delight at the idea that Angelenos are “reversing the American directive to go west…finding that New York is more than a capitalist prison that runs on the fumes of the finance industry and nostalgia for CBGB.” “In fact,” she writes, “it now offers many of the lifestyle amenities that their hometown has boasted for decades.” (Friedman’s listed amenities include green juice, raw meals and “an In-N-Out Burger replacement called Shake Shack.”)

Ravi_Mangla_b&wHow long did it take you to write The Lowland?

I didn’t write The Lowland.

 

Are you sure?

Pretty sure.

Understudies_RMangla-frontShe bought a home down the hill from my own, a snug little number done up in wisteria. Not so long ago she won a Golden Globe for her featured role in one of those paranormal romances. I hadn’t seen the film, but I had heard good things from Chudley and others. The house once belonged to her grandmother and she would visit in the summers when she was younger: playing in the park, swimming in the community pool. She was looking to reclaim a part of her past. Two spells in rehab, a nasty divorce and widely circulated honeymoon video. The Hollywood grind had ground her into something she no longer recognized. She was piecing herself back together. Or at least that was what Chudley told me.