His family was old and jewish and moved here in the 30s. They lived in Beverlywood and found solace in daily crosswords and wooden ramekins and Chinese food. I graduated with the class of ’74 at 15 years old and subsequently was hired at an auto shop.
We worked on American cars. Capris with V8s, Datsuns outfitted for racing. The garage was off Rochester, where the streets were all states and the states were the Midwest and Arizona Avenue was a far cry for help. I would walk past the Fox lot and down “Beverly Glen” and into “Beverlywood” and into “Beverly Hills” then through Carthay Circle. There is now a hotel where once was, over and over.
Mr. McDaniel owned an Oldsmobile 442 and visited the shop every fourth Tuesday to ask about tire treads. He said he’d been taking the car to Angeles crest which was a ridiculous statement, conditional even: if he had taken the car to the crest, it would have gone into the ravine. I obliged, and every fourth Tuesday he was back.
Mr. McDaniel lived in a dingbat in Carthay circle and found me daydreaming at a house one afternoon. Instead of letting him take me to work, I offered to check out the treads in the fluorescent buzz of his garage. He invited me upstairs to his orange shag and Goya reproductions on the wall. I never felt the need to ask what McDaniel did for work, his suit was two sizes too large.