If you've watched Showtime's "The L Word," now in its second season, you know that Shane -- played by 27-year-old Katherine Moennig -- is the center star in an elaborate constellation of lesbian melodrama.
Despite its West Hollywood setting, the series shoots in Vancouver. But now that the show has wrapped filming, Moennig gets to explore Los Angeles, after having moved from New York about two years ago.
In New York I loved going to little cafes on the Lower Eastside, these untouched places that no one had been to, and sit there and read the newspaper. Even though L.A. is not the same, I try to find things that are familiar to me in that regard. So there's this market in Laurel Canyon, and in the morning there's a little coffee stand outside. It's kind of like a little mom-and-pop store, the little general store. She makes good coffee and teas, so I love going there on nice days and getting tea. I buy the newspaper and sit outside and enjoy the neighborhood and fresh air, being grateful that it's 70 in December.
Pace, right next door, is a really cute restaurant. The way they've decorated it is so warm and cozy. There's wine and olives and almonds and stuff for snacks; it's such a nice peaceful evening. I personally like the chopped salads, and you can never go wrong with a pasta.
I live down the hill, and I always liked the neighborhood. When I came here for the first time, I stayed not far from Laurel Canyon. It seemed so quiet and peaceful, with the homes nestled in the trees.
Living in L.A., homes are such a mandatory means of happiness, I use a lot of my time to check out furniture, from high-end to low-end. But the flea markets, on the low-end, that's where the gems are. I've just recently started shopping in Silver Lake. That part of town seems untouched in terms of clothing and style. I like the shops and vibe there; it's more raw.
Made with TLC
On weekends, there's this open market on Ivar Avenue. They have fresh flowers and fruit, but also people who make jewelry and homemade incense. I love going there because you can buy things you never find in stores. Everything's handmade and made with love.
There's this photographer -- Henry Diltz -- who took all these amazing photographs of musicians in L.A. I saw an exhibition of his in SoHo. Here, I've been trying to find photography that matches that. His photos just capture musicians' sexuality and presence. So on a day off, I try to find galleries that have interesting pieces of photography.
I like music -- though I don't play, even though I grew up around it. I love music of the early '70s, that whole Patti Smith era. That part of history just fascinates me: how they lived their lives, how their passion and their love was so strong.
One of the great shows I saw in L.A. was the Peaches concert at the El Rey. She'd been on "The L Word," and before we went to shoot the second season, we went to see her. She's just a free and open performer.
Hama is a great sushi restaurant in Venice, on Windward Avenue off Abbot Kinney. I personally think it's excellent. The oyster shooters -- we always get those. It just has the perfect combination of everything. Maybe it's the atmosphere. I don't like sushi that's dressed up with a lot of stuff. And at Hama, it's clean; there's no bells and whistles to it.
-- Robin Rauzi