It's hard to imagine anyone close to the nexus of L.A. fashion and celebrity not being familiar with James Goldstein, the older (shall we say) man who dresses in python skin suits and hats and who has been a fixture for years at Lakers games and around the edges of the local fashion scene. His website is plastered with the magazine covers and stories done on him. LA Observed first posted a 2007 profile from that well-known fashion bible, the South Bay Daily Breeze. Well, he was new to LAT Image writer Adam Tschorn, who gets acquainted in this weekend's LA, the paper's Sunday magazine.
Ever since my first Laker game years ago, I’ve wondered about the distinctively dressed dude way up close who, from the nosebleeds, looks like a well-done bacon strip in a cowboy hat.
Binoculars reveal it’s actually a deeply tanned man with white collar-length hair who favors head-to-toe wardrobes of leather and python skin, accessorized with a jaunty scarf knotted at the neck. Through a chance encounter at the Chateau Marmont, I learn his name—James Goldstein—and seek to find out more.
The man in question agrees to meet me at the place he’s lived since 1972. The John Lautner Sheats-Goldstein house has been a location for some 300 fashion shoots and a handful of movies, most notably The Big Lebowski. He demurs on his age (at least 60, but he “feels 20”) and source of income (“property investments”), but he is happy to give me the skinny on the duds.
Photo: From American Way, at Goldstein's website