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2013 Enthusiastolutions

Hello Enthusiasts –

Well, as usual, I’m well behind in dropping my pearls of wisdom on you.  If you believe in the scarcity principle, that just makes you all the more appreciative.

But, one of the things that keeps me from writing is that I always have to find pictures and generally arrange things on this little vanity project, which is more taxing than it should be.  So, for this post, you just get my bon mots.

I intended to do a year-end roundup, which I think I’ve done the last couple years, but alas, didn’t get to it.  So, instead, you get my off-the-top-of-my-head, improvised, totally momentary new year’s resolutions.  Since you’ve probably already broken yours, I don’t feel so bad.

Anyway, herewith are my Enthusiastolutions for 2013:

Write about places that deserve it sooner.  I haven’t written to you yet about Bestia, unless you count the Test Kitchen portion of my Three Secret Dinners post, which you shouldn’t.  And it’s awesome – probably the best Italian food in Downtown right now.  Coco Laurent is brand spankin’ new, and has a great old LA vibe to it.  But do you know about it yet?  No.  Mo Chica has been neglected for far too long by yours truly, and perhaps most egregiously, Baco Mercat is still a no show on here.  So … even if the posts are shorter and/or don’t include pictures and/or don’t come with some unifying, clever, what-it-means-about-Los-Angeles theme, you’ll hear about things sooner.  I hope.  Besides, I can’t continue to claim that the LA Times is drafting off of my brilliance if I don’t actually post things before they write about them.

Write about more places outside of Downtown.  Yes, I know that Downtown is my thing, and I really do love it.  But there are plenty of great places outside of Downtown which shouldn’t go arbitrarily ignored, especially if they have the “Downtown” vibe.  Because, arguably, many trends that started in Downtown – quality cocktails, unpretentious fine dining, unroped bars – have spread throughout the City.  L & E Oyster Bar, Hatfield’s, Sunset Beer Company, XoiaWood & VineSt. Felix, and even Wolfgang Puck’s very-special-occasion restaurant at the Hotel Bel Air are just a few of the very many places that deserve some love.  The only problem with this resolution is that it will encourage more of you to ask me where you should (have your birthday party, take your co-workers, host friends from out of town, celebrate your anniversary, impress a date, if-you-can-think-of-a-random-occasion-I’ve-been-asked-about-it) across even more of the City.  But don’t expect much from west of the 405.  I hate the Westside.

Write about more than restaurants and bars.  “What?” you say.  “But that’s all you know!”  Well, perhaps.  But I’ve long considered expanding this little vanity project to more than just convivial pursuits.  Don’t worry – it’s not going to become some eat-your-Wheaties political rantfest (why would I do that when you get plenty of it from your Facebook News Feed?).  And it’s not gonna become Us Weekly (Not that there’s anything wrong with Us Weekly.  Not that I ever read it.  But not that there would be anything wrong with it if I did.  Which I never do.  Really.)  But maybe a little something more than the latest restaurant, or newest cocktail craze, just to keep you on your toes.  Suggested topics welcome.

Revisit some old favorites.  In our eternal quest for the new, we sometimes overlook the reliable standbys.  But I’ll never stop going to Seven Grand.  I’ll never not eat at Bottega Louie.  I’ll always think the Edison is one of the coolest rooms in Downtown.  And Pete’s continues to deserve some love for blazing one of the original trails.  So, from time to time, I’ll remind you of your old loves, not just the pretty new thing that walked in the room.  Besides, I’m continually amazed by the number of people who haven’t been to these places.  What’s wrong with you people?

Work on The Amateur Enthusiast’s Guide to Downtown LA.  Another long gestating project.  I don’t know that I’ll finish it this year (OK, I know I won’t), but I don’t know of any guides that focus on Downtown, and certainly none with that certain je ne sais quoi that your loyal Enthusiast brings.  So … I’m as much of a capitalist as the next guy.  See a niche, fill it.  Of course, this entails things I generally don’t like to do like actual research, going to places I don’t really like, probably expanding to include things like hotels and cultural destinations (which I like fine but don’t want to have to write about), and generally being more thorough about things.  But hey – write off! Again, suggestions/thoughts/unpaid research associates welcome.

And, the usual stuff.  You know, be a better person, eat healthier, exercise more, yada yada yada.

There’s other stuff that I could resolve to do, but my dad always said to avoid stuff that is illegal, immoral, unethical, or stupid, so I’ll just leave it at that.

Happy travels!  Here’s to a great 2013.