From New York to Jollibee and Back Again

Jollibee on Beverly in Los Angeles's Koreatown Neighborhood

Jollibee on Beverly in Los Angeles's Koreatown Neighborhood

For about a year I've had an inadvertent subscription to New York Magazine. Somehow it just started appearing in my mailbox. I kinda thought perhaps I had tried to subscribe to The New Yorker, made some ridiculous mistake, then forgotten about the episode. Strangely, none of my credit card or bank statements said anything about either magazine, but it was clearly addressed to me at what was then my address. It kept coming. As far as I knew, it wasn't a gift subscription, and I'd probably peer quizzically toward anyone who gave me such a gift (quizzically, but appreciatevely, because a gift is a gift, right?). Every week, another copy of New York. I'd thumb through here and there, each time thinking "this is impressively irrelevant to me." (Note to self: learn how to spell the word "relevant" and its variants at some point. That and "tomorrow" and "gray".) I don't have any specific qualm with the magazine, nor the city for which it is named. Every now and then, particularly last summer, when I was transitioning between incarnations of my life, I'd actually read an article or two in the magazine (don't ask me which -- my apologies to the authors, but they just didn't leave very lasting impressions). Usually, the magazine would just get filed away, stacked toward the middle of my pile of magazines and books to read.

Thankfully, my subscription is finally nearing its end and I can give away my last copies on Freecycle. If there's nothing else I've learned in life recently it's that there are people in this life who want and can make use of just about anything in this world.

Today, I got yet another copy, oddly enough, since I received the previous issue on Tuesday (There seems to be no rhyme nor reason to New York's circulation). As I climbed the stairs to my apartment I found my thumbs skipping across the pages, but I didn't really glance at what they said.

Then, this evening, my not quite as old as it sometimes acts laptop overheated right as I was in the middle of watching an episode of LostWhile I waited for the computer to reboot I went about my apartment, shuffling papers and washing a few dishes and generally pretending to be busy. I got to the front door adjacent bookshelf upon which mail gets stacked for innumerable weeks and grabbed the New York i received this week. Flipping through, I landed on a page listing a few restaurant openings and closings.

Then I saw it. What would appear to my wondering eyes but none other than the home of "Crispy Chickenjoy" and "Juicy Yumburgers." Jollibee

Oh the joys of coincidence. Since the day I moved to L.A. and passed the giant, gleeful bee scultpure outside a drive through fast food joint, Jollibee has pervaded my consciousness. In the following months, friends and family have all discussed the joint, yet I haven't had any crispy poultry or tasty beef patties. Just last night I mentioned to a friend how curious I am about Jollibee and was reminded, as I learned a few months ago, that the restaurant is actually a popular Filipino fast food chain.

Somehow I feel cheated that it made it to New York's openings list before it even got a mention in L@LIt's not so much that I'm protective of my L.A. gems, but that it seems a latent instance of the somewhat annoying  irony fad that so infected  late 90's and early 00's Western culture, often fueled by inaccurate understanding of the term's definition.  Perhaps, perhaps not. Whatever the case, I still keep picturing New York's food editors thinking how recession-chic it might be to list a new fast food outlet among the openings.

Yes, my computer is fine. And yes Lost was great. I'm a sucker.

In other news. Did anyone hear about the Octopus at the Santa Monica Aquarium? Crazy.