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.