An article in Friday’s LA Times about the gentrification of Echo Park struck some of us as a wee bit tone deaf. It struck LA Weekly music editor (and Los Feliz resident) Gustavo Turner as “an epically LULZy article that seems to come from a different dimension where aliens from an unknown galaxy (Sherman Oaks?) have landed in Echo Park with a guidebook from 1978 warning them about cholo-on-cholo crime, but are chuffed that the neighborhood is really a haven for whites who enjoy mixologists and other Stuff White People Like.”
We recommend reading Turner’s gentle, mocking critique in its entirety, but have included highlights below:
LA Times: Changes to the area have reached a tipping point in the last two years as a new wave of upscale destinations opened their doors to the area’s ever-increasing population of artists, musicians and loafers.
Turner: “New wave”? “Hip party people”? What, “pepped-up hepsters looking for a happening that would freak them out” was taken? Did the Times hire Z-Man Bartell as a line editor when we weren’t looking? Also, “loafers”? “LOAFERS”?
LA Times: The neighborhood’s most anticipated opening is a 10,000-square-foot bar and restaurant named Mohawk Bend that is slated to open in February and occupies the nearly 100-year-old movie theater across the street from Nicole Daddio’s cozy wine bar City Sip.
Turner: “Most anticipated”? By whom? The kind of people who like 10,000-square-foot bars and restaurants named Mohawk Bend tend to stay west of Hollywood.
To be fair, while the gentrification of Echo Park may seem like old news to anyone actually living on the east side of town, the LA Times isn’t written just for those people. Surely in New York there are Manhattanites who don’t know that Williamsburg has become a hipster enclave?