Tar Pits: A Romance

I'm WAY into hyperbole (as evidenced by the fact that I just typed "WAY" in all caps). I love the words "big" and "best" and "huge" and "everything." Sometimes I overstate things, for sure, but when I call the La Brea Tar Pits here in Los Angeles world-famous, I'm not overstating it.

The real tar pits down the street from the fictional Wilfair Hotel make up one of the most well-known fossil sites on the planet. It is hilarious and strange and magical to me that they're in the middle of a very large -- sorry a HUGE -- city that teems with modern features. I love the juxtaposition, ancient and futuristic.

The pits have been in some movies -- notably "Volcano" -- but they've all been, for the most part, action or disaster flicks. So one day I was like, "hey, the tar pits TOTALLY need to star in a romance."

No, really, I like actually thought that. And "totally"? Another problem word for me.

The pits are a bit smelly (I rather like their singular odor) and they're known for trapping unsuspecting animals (there's a fence up now, so that doesn't happen these days), so they don't automatically summon a romantic feeling. And that's why they should star in a romance, in my mind. Sometimes an odd backdrop can make a love affair stand out in a new way.

I'm mad for romcoms, and perfect people falling in love beside fountains on snowy nights, and perfect people falling in love in all the places we've been told are the appropriate places for people to fall in love.

But there are romcoms that boast unusual settings, too. I wanted one for these stories. Tar is stinky, viscous, and goopy, and an argument could be made that the very best love holds those qualities, too.

photo: gtall1


Erika said...

I've never thought of the tar pits as a weird backdrop for a love story. Which says something about me I think :). Now that you mention it, it is kind of an odd backdrop but I love it.

Wilfair Book said...

And, truly, they're not the main backdrop, just adjacent to the backdrop.

Perhaps they aren't that weird. I just wanted to lend a different angle to their volcanic-bubbles pop culture rep. They're quite benign and lovely.

kitzie said...

There'll have to have two scientists falling in love while performing their field research at the pits! She's a geologist and is obsessed with, um, muck. He's a palaeontologist who is obsessed with saber tooth cats (sort of a duh there, right? Who isn't?) They can get into sexual tension fights and then fall into the tar pits...or not. :)

My favorite magnet from my magnet collection is from the tar pits. It's a saber tooth cat with a glittery green eye that says Page Museum. Just recently I was talking with BFF and mentioned this, my fave magnet, and she said "Oh, I have one just like that! It's also my favorite magnet from my collection!" And then we remembered that we went there together. ie I've only been there once and not for very long, but I understand the draw. It was pretty awesome.

Wilfair Book said...

Two things, kitzie.

1? My ladies here have a way of getting hunches about what might be brewing in the "Wilfair" world. That's all I can say!

2? The Page Museum is the best! And a saber-toothed cat with a glittery green eye? Fantastic. I have Bigfoot magnet I often animate and make do things around the kitchen while I'm waiting for the pasta water to boil. If your prehistoric cat magnet was in my kitchen I'd make him fall in love with Bigfoot and have adventures around the cupboards and silverware drawer. No, I would, really.

Oh, and 3? My Wilfair neighborhood walk-about would include a visit to the Page for a mastodon postcard. Just sayin'.

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