Tag Archives: wokcano

OLIVER BROWN – HANGING WITH STRETCH

Foreword by Stan Lerner: as mentioned in a previous foreword, I’m working on the motion picture screenplay for our dear Downtown Oliver Brown, so I thought it a bit of fun to repost some of his classic adventures. Enjoy!!!

“Hey Oliver, slow down a second.”

I stopped half a block short of 7th on Flower so my homeless buddy Stretch could put a torch lighter to the pipe in his hand. I call him Stretch because he’s almost seven- feet-tall and looks like he weighs one-sixty or less. “Stretch, you know I don’t approve of you smoking crack.”

 “Oliver, I’m a homeless black man with HIV—give me a break. Smoking crack is the least of my problems.”

 “Well maybe you wouldn’t be homeless if you didn’t spend all the money you panhandle on drugs.”

 Stretch laughed. “Oliver, you spend more money on coffee than I do on crack.”

 “Not anymore, Howard Schultz sent me a Starbucks’ card with a couple of grand on it, for a signed copy of my last book.”

 “Does that mean you’re going to pay me back the money you owe me?” asked Stretch.

It was my turn to laugh. “I knew there was a reason I hadn’t told you about my Starbucks’ card.” I stopped at the corner and stared up at the Wokcano sign.”

Stretch looked at the sign as well, although thinking a completely different thought than my own. “I did some good business here when this was Burger King—it’s all about foot traffic for me,” said Stretch.

 I had a plan. “You really shouldn’t smoke crack on an empty stomach…Wait here I’m going to get you some sushi.” Continue reading

INTRODUCING DOWNTOWN OLIVER BROWN

Foreword by Stan Lerner: as I began work today on the motion picture screenplay version of Downtown Oliver Brown I could not help but to think he should once again grace the home page of downtownster. And while all of Oliver’s adventures are available under the downtownster feature section there’s nothing like reading him off of the homepage — so enjoy, and I promise there will be some new adventures soon!!!

“I just dropped Kevyn off at the airport, so I can come hang out,” Joe’s voice rang out through my iPhone. “Where are you?”

 “I’m at Starbucks on 11th and Grand—come pick me up,” I answered back, wondering how I was going to get my hair cut at Salon Eleven and meet Joe in the same one hour time frame—oh well.

 Some background: Joe, like most of my friends, has become rich over the years. And yes he’s good looking too—whatever. So, now that he’s sold his luxury mansion rental business in Sun Valley for zillions he’s decided to come back to LA, specifically Downtown to get serious about business.

Who better to call than Oliver Brown? I’ve lived Downtown for fourteen years—that would be before it was cool and the Lakers were still playing in Minnesota or Inglewood or somewhere. Anyway, when my rich friends decide it’s time to get richer or cooler Downtown they usually call.

How did I come to live Downtown? I left the mansion I could no longer afford in Doheny Estates and moved Downtown. Somehow my failure to make enough money as a writer to live in twenty times more space than I needed has made me an artistic / business visionary. If I could have thought that one up and sold it to NBC I probably wouldn’t have moved.

Starbucks on 11th and Grand is as good a neighborhood hangout as one can ask for. I spend most of the day writing there. Continue reading