After nine years in print, the guidebook LA Bizarro "retains a devout cult following among the perverse and overly informed in Los Angeles," says Los Anjealous. The blog interviews co-author Matt Maranian, who lives in Brattleboro, Vermont, and warns "should you ever meet [him]: Mention neither St. Martin’s Press nor the 405 freeway, lest ye be fully braced for the ensuing onslaught of F-bombs."
We were sitting around stoned one night at his house and I guess we starting talking about all our favorite off-the-beaten-path, sort of fringey places in and around L.A. that we had each sought out over our collective twenty years in Southern California. At one point one of us said “We should write a guidebook.” It seemed like a great project for us to work on together but we figured that the idea was so obvious, surely someone must have already done a book like that. We combed bookstores and did our research and came up with nothing. There were books that touched on some of that material, but not whole-hog. No book even came close. Personally, I’ve always felt that great ideas are just floating out there in the ether, and the difference between someone who has success with a great idea and a person who doesn’t is all a matter of who jumps on it first. So I figured we’d better jump on it — and with a great sense of urgency.
Maranian has also written for Boing Boing, the Los Angeles Reader, Harper’s, Wired and British Esquire. His co-author on Bizarro was Anthony R. Lovett.