Esotouric News for August 4, 2008

Gentle reader,

Welcome to this week’s installment of the Esotouric mailing list, an insight into upcoming happenings, fabulous freebies and suggested amusements to make your time in Los Angeles somewhat less tiresome. Read on for all the news you need…
1) THURSDAY, AUGUST 7: I’m co-presenting the THE SID SAGA: SID LAVERENTS’ CENTENNIAL BIRTHDAY PARTY and screening at UCLA, a chance to meet and marvel at one of the most astonishing (and long-lived) independent filmmakers California ever spawned. Once you see multiple Sids singing his Vaudeville-era crowd pleaser, you will be transformed: your life will just be a little more gleeful forever.  Info is on this page (scroll down)

2) SATURDAY, AUGUST 9 – Why should you climb aboard the Charles Bukowski bus departing from Vroman’s Bookstore in Pasadena? There are so many reasons… a revealing tour through the lost LA that inspired a great writer, a chance to chat with the Huntington curators who are archiving his papers, delicious donuts at Pink Elephant Liquors, AND for everyone who rides with us a very special discount you can use for cheap seats on an upcoming Esotouric bus adventure. Call Vroman’s directly to reserve – Tel: 626-449-5320. Ladies, the Tony Millionaire Bukbird t-shirt sale continues at

3) THURSDAY, AUGUST 14 – The Hippodrome rolls at the Downtown LA Art Walk, hosted by Richard and myself and featuring live magic, fortune telling, mime, song, poetry, a marching band, a lady with a snake presenting the Dadaist Manifesto and… well, you better click below for set times and details. It’s FREE and if you ask, we’ll give you an Esotouric discount coupon when you say hi.

4) SATURDAY, AUGUST 16 – Won’t you join us on the REAL BLACK DAHLIA tour, a ramble through the world of women in post-war Los Angeles, from crime reporters to teens on the make and much between? The tour schedule leaves time to take tea in the Biltmore Hotel lobby, where Joan Crawford first saw little Christina, afterwards. Click for info

5) SATURDAY, AUGUST 23: Skylight Books present the long awaited return of JOHN FANTE’S DREAMS FROM BUNKER HILL, our exploration of a lost neighborhood and the literary giant who chronicled it. The tour closes out the week long run of UCLA’s restoration of the great lost Bunker Hill film "The Exiles" — show us (or email) a ticket stub from the film for 15% off the $58 ticket price. Our special guests on the tour are John Fante’s daughter Vickie and Fante biographer Stephen Cooper, signing books at a post-tour reception. Info at

6) SATURDAY, AUGUST 30: It’s CRAWLING DOWN CAHUENGA: TOM WAITS’ LA, the debut of a new bus adventure co-hosted by David Smay (author of the 33 1/3 book on "Swordfishtrombones") and myself. Tom Waits’ summer American tour sold out in an eye blink, and he didn’t play LA, so this is your only chance to immerse yourself in the Waits legend, from skid row to Coppola’s Zoetrope, lonesome bottles to love’s redemption. Email to reserve or visit

7) Artists! FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 26 is the deadline to enter your proposed artwork to transform the Hippodrome Art Walk shuttle into a moving portrait of the wild and wonderful glory years of Main Street. There are some fabulous prizes for the winning artists not to mention the fact that they will instantly be among the most visible artists on Gallery Row, so click below info, and do pass it on.

8) Courtesy of author Kelly DiNardo, this week’s giveaway is an autographed hardbound copy of GILDED LILI: LILI ST. CYR AND THE STRIPTEASE MYSTIQUE, the acclaimed biography of the platinum blonde bombshell and one-time Florentine Gardens showgirl whose elaborate themed strip routines are still being copied by burlesque artistes today. For a chance to win, just reply to this email by midnight, Friday August 8, with your name and mailing address. A winner will be randomly selected on Saturday August 9. For more info or (if you’re not feeling lucky) to purchase a copy, visit
Or click on over to author Kelly DiNardo’s burlesque blog,

9) There’s trouble at the Long Beach Public Library, and it would help if you could send an email. More info here


Upcoming Esotouric bus tour schedule:
Sat Aug 9- Vroman’s Bookstore – Haunts of A Dirty Old Man: Charles Bukowki’s LA
Thurs Aug 14 – The Hippodrome (Downtown LA Art Walk Shuttle, free)
Sat Aug 16 – The Real Black Dahlia
Sat Aug 23 – Skylight Books – John Fante’s Dreams from Bunker Hill
Sat Aug 30 – Crawling Down Cahuenga: Tom Waits’ LA
Sun Sept 7 – Reyner Banham Loves Los Angeles: South LA
Thurs Sept 11 – The Hippodrome (Downtown LA Art Walk Shuttle, free)
Sat Sept 13 – Blood & Dumplings  
Sat Sept 20 – Reyner Banham Loves Los Angeles: The Many Downtowns
Sat Oct 4 – Bodhi Tree – Visionary Hollywood
Thurs Oct 9 – The Hippodrome (Downtown LA Art Walk Shuttle, free)
Sat Oct 11- Vroman’s Bookstore – Raymond Chandler’s LA
Sat Oct 18- Raymond Chandler’s Bay City
Sat Oct 25 – Halloween Horrors with Crimebo the Clown

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