There are days I want to skip town and never look back. And then there are days that remind me why my planned three-year stint in LA has lapsed into just over a decade. The pure seediness and myriad just-below-the-surface stories and neighborhoods that I continue to uncover keep me from hightailing it to an even warmer clime like Hawaii. And now, as if they’d done it just for me, someone’s made a tour that showcases all the best of LA’s worst.
Esotouric doesn’t cater to the shiny, smiling out-of-towner hoping for a real-life glimpse of a celeb teen tragedy. Instead, this only-in-LA tour company takes passengers through the various underbellies of the city’s many-storied past. The new Blood & Dumplings tour careens past notorious crime scenes and the hideouts of various ne’er-do-wells like neo-Nazis and murderous lesbians — all topped off with a tasty bite from Alhambra’s 101 Noodle Express, one of Jonathan Gold‘s 99 sanctioned area joints (with vegetarian options for yours truly). Where the Action Was gets hip to the once-happening rock landmarks, including Rodney Bingenheimer’s now-defunct boite. They even cover my beloved Route 66.
Who wants to tag along?