What’s it all about?

I have been peering through death records (ain’t the web a wonderful thing) and finding names of relatives. Just out of curiosity, I began looking up people I once knew and developed business relationships with. Often with business relationships, there is the feeling that without the business aspect, there is really no friendship. Yet I did (and still do) have friends that came out of these relationships.

For example, I used to speak to a couple of really nice brothers who ran a business that I purchased supplies from. They inherited from their father, who started it out in the early part of the 20th century in Los Angeles, and were still at their original location.

I lived in LA practically my whole life. Being a bit of an Angeles-o-phile I have a keen interest in what made this city what it is (and isn’t).

So speaking with people like Milt and Ben was one of the highlights of that job. I actually never met them in person- we only ever spoke on the phone, which at first seems strange, but then the phone gives you a kind of comfortable distance at which we can comfortably relate.

After we got business out of the way, we would get around to discussing old LA and I really enjoyed their insight into what the city was like way back when. One of them, I think it was Ben, even lent me a copy of a book (in web form), no longer in publication. This was such a nice gesture that I felt touched and still to this day appreciate the kind of rapport we had, for something that was really only a business relationship.

And to know someone that wasn’t too far removed from that time and place, and whose family had just a few degrees of separation from the author, made me feel some extra special connection to my town.

I found Milt and Ben’s company on the web, and sent an email inquiring about them. When I did business with them in the late 80’s early 90’s, they were iirc in their 60’s.

The person who replied, whose name I recall as being someone I spoke with back then, informed me that Ben passed away in 2004. Milt is now 87, still works every day, and even drives himself there. Amazing.

I think I’ll be giving him a call.

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