Today was full of extremes.
It was Priyanka’s last morning with us in LA. I suggested we go to a favourite breakfast place of mine – the Newsroom Cafe on Robertson. They do great salads and juices, plus I knew that Priyanka wanted to do some shopping on Robertson, and so it made sense.
But when we got there I saw that the cafe was shut – for good. It had closed down. (It’s been a while since I’ve been there. In my past few trips to LA I’ve always stayed down Venice.)
Anyway, I’d got a park right outside The Ivy, we were all starving, and so we decided to eat there.
For those of you who aren’t up on the fashionable eateries of Hollywood, The Ivy is an institution. Big stars go there often, movies have been shot there, and it’s an integral part of the show biz scene in Hollywood.
It was Saturday morning and we were dressed casually, and as soon as we walked in we were ignored, even though it was early and the place was virtually empty. We were finally asked by a snooty waiter if we had a reservation. I said no. (There were only three other people in the restaurant at the time – every other table was empty.)
The waiter made a big deal of finding us a table, and made us feel that we were SO LUCKY to be eating there at all.
We were ushered to the table and the waiter continued his obnoxious attitude. I said to Pieter in a stage whisper: This guy’s really working hard for his tip.
Music was blaring from speakers nearby. And I mean blaring. I asked the snooty waiter if he could turn it down and he said it was not possible. I said it was very loud and he laughed and said: This is not loud. You should hear it when it’s really loud.
We ordered breakfast. The prices made my eyes water. Still, this was a special treat for Priyanka before she hopped on a plane back to London.
When it came time to pay the bill, and the others had wandered off, I called the waiter over. And this is what I said to him:
Mate, when we walked in, you assumed we were tourists. And you treated us abysmally. I just want to let you know that the bloke sitting opposite me is one of the top documentary cameramen in the world, and comes to LA often. The lass sitting beside me is one of the top jewellery designers in the world, and is treated like royalty in restaurants far grander than this joint. The woman sitting opposite me is a producer and has been in the film industry for decades, and me – I’m a producer and director and I’ve eaten here often. So what I’m saying to you is this: We’re not tourists. And even if we were you shouldn’t have treated us badly. You really shouldn’t make assumptions about people and judge them.
And I left it at that, and gave him the required 20% tip.
And I’ll never go back there again.
We then drove Priyanka to LAX and said our goodbyes. We’ll be seeing her again in India in September. And then we headed north because we have an important interview with Dr. Judith Orloff tomorrow at Big Sur.
I drove and Pieter fell asleep, his head jerking from side to side, drool running down his chin. I tried to take a photo to post to Facebook but driving on a freeway and trying to focus was potentially life threatening. It would have been a great shot though…
As we approached Morro Bay a huge bank of fog moved in – it looked like something that Industrial Light and Magic had conjured up.
And when we got to the bay the sun was setting. We could hear seals barking. The air was cool and fresh. It was great to be away from Hollywood, and The Ivy.