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Conan O'Brien discovers L.A.

June 3, 2009 |  2:21 pm

Conan-under-coverThe City of Angels, its neighborhoods and things L.A. are getting new national attention thanks to Conan O’Brien’s arrival here.

In his debut as host of the "Tonight Show," O'Brien aired a segment in which he cruised through L.A. neighborhoods in his weather-beaten Ford Taurus. He hung out with low-riders, presumably in East L.A. He took in a Lakers game like the many celeb fans -- but from the penthouse of the arena, last seat of the nosebleed section.

On Tuesday, O'Brien said he even got NBC, with its diminishing budget, to pony up so he could do a Julia Roberts-style shopping excursion on Rodeo -- Road, that is, in the Crenshaw District (segment starts at about the 12-minute mark in above link). To the tune of "Pretty Woman," O'Brien went into Urban Underground Outfits for its grand opening and emerged from the dressing room in a variety of urban gear – he even unintentionally tried out the sag look, with his pants dropping to the floor at one point. Some of his outfits were met by a disapproving Richard Gere.

Later, the New York-“tanned” O'Brien entered Eden Beauty Supply and Salon to find “100% Human Hair and Wigs,” as a sign outside proclaimed. From flowing blond a la Abba to disco-fabulous Afro, he sported different ‘dos to the amusement of the sales assistants.

With a wig of cascading braids, he said he either looked like Rick James or the alien from “Predator” – the split screen showed how he actually favored the alien. Jane Lee, a manager at Eden Beauty, said she received several calls today from people who saw the episode.

“We don’t know if it means more business, but he made us laugh,” she said.

Since we natives want to help O'Brien assimilate more easily, we at L.A. Now want to offer him a few suggestion to continue to get a true flavor of Southern California:

1. See what’s brewing at the coffee shops in Little Saigon, where servers show more skin than Victoria's Secret models.
2. Lather up and get a glow at any tanning salon in the O.C., preferably Newport Beach.
3. Pump iron and maybe limbo at Muscle Beach in Venice.
4. Ride the rails to compare the subways of New York and L.A.
5. Hit the Coliseum dressed in ancient Trojan attire and ride USC’s mascot Traveler.

Tell us where you think O'Brien should go to get a true flavor of SoCal.

-- Davan Maharaj

Photo: Conan O'Brien in L.A. Credit: NBC.com