I wanted to catch the final 45 minutes of The Apartment last night, but it seemed exorbitant to pay $12 bucks (or whatever the Aero charges) for that small pleasure. (That’s me standing near the main door.) I’ve never seen Billy Wilder‘s 1960 dramedy on a big screen. By the time we (two friends and myself) got there today’s Wilder films — Double Indemnity, Ace in the Hole — were up on the marquee. Of all the things I miss about Los Angeles, the Aero may be on the top of the list.

Saturday, 7.24, 8:55 pm

You have to wonder about the fairly well-off people who live in the vicinity of Santa Monica’s Montana Ave. I was standing at the corner of Montana and 13th last night around 9:05 pm, and looking south, west, north and east. The bar across the street from the Aero was lively, but otherwise the neighborhood was like a scene from Stanley Kramer ‘s On The Beach with everyone dead in their beds from radiation. Or “Where Is Everybody?”, that Twilight Zone episode with Earl Holliman. I saw exactly one guy walking his dog. Everyone’s sitting at home with their plasma screens and glasses of white wine, I suppose. Rome’s Trastevere district beats this all to hell.