Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Shopping in Hollywood

I'll warn you now: this post is all about shopping.

Many moons ago, before I moved to LA, I thought shopping in Hollywood would be glam. And though I've been to Hollywood many, many, many times, other than taking visitors to do tourist-y things in Hollywood, I don't spend much time there. Well, aside from the occasional visit to the mall at Hollywood & Highland. But Hollywood is filthy and parking is a bee-yotch.

Anyway, I'm producing and acting in a short film that shoots next weekend, and I needed a platinum blonde wig, and sexy boots (don't you even ask, lol). I drove down Hollywood Blvd. trying to find a store that looked like it might have what I needed. I saw a shoe store, and didn't have any trouble finding a parking meter the first time 'round the block (yippee). I went into the store and asked the guy there if he carried any boots in a size 11 (most shoe stores don't go above size 10). He pointed out about 3 boots & a shoe. I picked one.

Okay, here's where the craziness started. Let me tell you that I am the consummate shoe shopper, okay? I have...75 (or so) pairs of shoes, and had to have foot surgery on both feet about 5 yrs. ago, so I don't wear anything that hurts, pinches, makes my ankle pop, or that I have to "break in."

Dude brought out the size 11 boots. I was very apprehensive about the 5-inch heel (3" is pretty much the top of my limit), but I thought what the heck, and figured I'd try it to see what it looked like. He told me to remove my sock. I did (while thinking "I'm going to be wearing some type of footwear with the boot") and dude put a plastic bag over my foot to help my foot slide into the boot easier ("so I'm going to have to wear a bag over my foot in order to wear these boots?"). I put my foot in halfway & KNEW this boot was not going to work. No way, Jose. But dude took control: He pushed and shoved and pushed some more. I looked at what he was doing and it looked like he was putting a left boot on my right foot. I told him & he snapped "No, it's not." I'm not left speechless a lot, but I really was dazed because this was the most ridiculous shoe-shopping experience I have ever had (with the exception of Stuarts' in Chicago when the guy made a racially prejudiced "you people" remark to me and I threw something at him). He asked me "Do you have high arches?" I told him "No, my feet are almost flat." He pushed a while longer...I told him "This isn't going to work." He said "hold on", grabbed some baby powder and shook it on the plastic bag covering my foot. I laughed. I think he got angry. He pushed some more then said "Your arches are too high." (Um..my feet are almost flat since the surgery.) I said "Okay, thank you." And left the store. Incredulous. I do believe he had worked up a sweat.

I checked the meter where my car was parked, and put in more change so I could walk around some more in hopes of finding more stores. The meter started flashing "FAIL" so I had to find another meter. I drove a bit, saw a store that looked interesting, parked at a meter (also flashing "FAIL"), drove around some more, found a meter that actually WORKED, parked & walked to the store. I found a really cool pair of almost-knee-high (I'm a smidge under 6'0" tall, so that's a big deal) patent-leather lace-up boots with 3" heels. The shape of the boot wasn't size-11 friendly, so I got a size 12 (!?!) and get this: the owner actually MAKES shoes. So I know where to go when I'm ready to buy my thigh-high leather boots. Maya's Shoes on Hollywood Blvd. somewhere btw. Highland & Ivar.

Soon after, I found a wig shop that was going out of business and had slashed their prices. I found a really nice platinum blonde wig that goes as well with me as a platinum blonde wig can go on a dark-skinned sista. The makeup artist had better bring her or his magic wand to tie it all together!

Although I won't be putting Hollywood in heavy rotation for my shopping needs, it's now at the bottom of a (long) list.
;o)

--Nicole

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