Saturday, May 30, 2009

I call Shotgun! Part 3: Santa Cruz, In which LV smells pot and buys her weight in vinyl

My friend’s wedding was Sunday afternoon, but with the morning free, my boyfriend and I decided to visit one of his old college haunts, Logos Bookstore in Santa Cruz.
Upon driving into the parking garage on Church St. and Commerce Ln., this was our conversation:

Charles: Ah the smell of pot. [to self] Welcome back Charles, welcome back.
Me: *sniff* Really?
Charles: [Definitively] Yeah.
Me: Really????????
Charles: Yeah.
Me: Wow, I suck.
Charles: Yeah, you do.

See, I cannot, to this day, remember what pot smells like enough to be able to identify it. I’ve had the smell pointed out to me many times, but for some reason my memory can’t quite latch onto it. But, within our first five minutes of entering Santa Cruz, pot smoke was decidedly wafting in the breeze.

While the pot-smoking habits of Santa Cruz residents have evidently not changed, the shops and political climate of Pacific Avenue have altered drastically. Several years ago, when my boyfriend attended the University of Santa Cruz, the extremely liberal hippy student population went ballistic over a Borders Bookstore trying to rent space in the shopping center. They petitioned the city to not allow Borders to rent, which the company circumvented by buying an entire building. I believe in supporting small businesses, but Borders wins points with me for standing up to the mad hippy mob. Now, six years later, the one-time battleground of Pacific Avenue is lined with corporate stores like Urban Outfitters and GAP. Small independent stores co-exist peaceably with their larger neighbors, and I enjoyed all the options. So many pretty dresses in the shop windows, but I restrained myself and only bought an Indian scarf for $10 at a place called Bunny’s Too. I would have liked to have spent more time running my hand over the soft cottons of the dresses…sigh…but with the wedding in a few hours, we had to go for what we came for.

He came for books.
I came for vinyl.

Records, that is. Real, round, grooved and groovy records. And Logos bookstore has two long aisles of them.

I don’t actually have a record player. Yet. But I have wanted one for years, since the new old-fashioned looking ones came out. I know that at some point I will buy one, and when I do, I will need records to play. And Logos has the biggest selection I have ever seen. Political speeches by Churchill and JFK; 1960s music from the Caribbean, Hawaii, and France; children’s audio stories and radio shows; and of course, the classics. Doris Day, Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and bands like America. This is by no means the complete list of what I bought, and at around $3-$5 per record, they added up. I call it an investment – I’m seeing vintage themed parties in my near future, and puzzling over these relics with my children and their children in the far future, when even my “new” “old-fashioned” record player will be an antique.

Logos Bookstore
1117 Pacific Ave. Santa Cruz. http://www.logosbooksrecords.com/

4 comments:

Charlie said...

Remind me of your obsession for vinyl when you are down here and I will let you peruse the albums I have upstairs in Fatima's room (the loft storage area). I haven't looked at what I have for probably at least 20 years so no telling what shape they are in.

I assume when you buy a player you will get one of the USB versions. I believe I have an used phonograph player upstairs but its possible it was donated too.

LV said...

Charles mentioned you had quite a collection, I'd love to take a look at it. Apparently records are back in fashion, which I did not know until a few days ago when your wonderful son surprised me with a record player. You'll have to ask him about the details, but he did quite a bit of research and found swap meets and stores all selling records like it's 1975. So far our favorite is Bobby Darin at the Copa. :D

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