Columnists, Are You Ready for Your Close-Up?

#NSNC16 – Los Angeles

By Paul Lander

Faux streetsign of Hollywood at Sunset, at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort

Actually, this street signpost is at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort. Too far to walk from the hotel.
Wikipedia photo

LOS ANGELES — It’ll be great to have so many of you here for this year’s NSNC extravaganza. And, yeah, I’d say that to anyone coming to L.A. because it’s L.A. and we say stuff like that, even when we don’t mean it.

We also say stuff like “Let’s do lunch” and “Have your people contact my people.” And, usually, we don’t mean that, either. But in the case of most of you, I do.

I’ve been asked to share with the National Society of Newspaper Columnists a few places of interest and L.A.-esque things to do.

This year’s conference’s hospitality suite (and yeah, yeah, rooms, too) will be at the Hotel Angeleno. The hotel has great panoramic views that span from the Pacific to the less specific (L.A.’s sprawling metropolis). While checking out the glamorous view, you might spot what looks like a crowded schoolyard of kids composed of the incredibly diverse backgrounds of the people who call the City of Angels home. You’re probably wrong; it’s probably just Brad and Angelina’s kids playing in their backyard.

The Angeleno is located in Brentwood, a neighborhood on the west side of Los Angeles. And, unlike the Eagles’ “Hotel California,” you cannot check out anytime you want (if you don’t want to be charged for an extra night, that is), but you can always leave. And, while you’re out, there’s a bunch of cool places within the range of a paparazzi’s zoom lens to check out.

• Brentwood Village is located about three-fourths of a mile west down Sunset Boulevard — it’s a charming area with boutiques, restaurants, and a lot of TV and movie stars hang out here. If you want to feel like a Hollywood screenwriter, take your iPad or laptop, park yourself at a coffee shop and pretend to be hard at work on that screenplay. An occasional chuckle or under your breath curse word will add to the effect. And, you’ll fit right in.

• The Getty Museum and Gardens are about 1 mile north. The complex is a cultural cornerstone in L.A. And, another great place to pull out that laptop or pretend you’re on your smart phone telling your agent to turn the deal down unless you get more ‘points on the back end.’ Don’t worry, if you don’t know what ‘points on the back end’ are, you’re a writer, you’re not going to get them anyway.

• UCLA is about 1 mile due east down Sunset. The university — home to museums, an amazing sculpture garden, libraries etc. — should appeal to almost everyone. And, you can spend some time in Westwood Village. More coffee shops, more pretending to sharpen that screenplay and telling your ‘agent,’ “I don’t care if Clooney wants to do it, I see Bradley Cooper in the part.”

• You’ll see people selling “Maps to the Stars Homes” along Sunset in Beverly Hills. Friends visiting often ask: “Are the maps really showing where movie stars actually live?” I’ll tell you what I tell them, “Ring the doorbell, they like that.”

I look forward to seeing so many of you again, as the date grows nearer don’t forget, “have your people contact my people” so we “can do lunch.”

• • •

The 2016 conference of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists will be June 23-26.

Here is the secure link to register for the conference:

It’ll be based at the Hotel Angeleno in Los Angeles. Here is the link for making reservations in its NSNC room block: We have a limited number of rooms at a special nightly rate of $169 so we advise early registration.

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  3 comments for “Columnists, Are You Ready for Your Close-Up?

  1. January 15, 2016 at 1:28 pm

    Wouldn’t miss it! Thanks for coordinating the fun.

  2. January 13, 2016 at 5:25 pm

    Excellent piece, Paul! Air kisses, darling!

  3. January 13, 2016 at 12:42 pm

    O.M.G., Paul. The L.A. Chamber of Commerce should hire you! HILARIOUS! And who wouldn’t want to vist L.A. after reading this?!!!

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