I live in Hollywood. On Hollywood Blvd. Kind of smack dab in-between a lot of fancy houses, in a low-key 1 BR apartment on the bus line. When strangers ask where I live, I usually give them the cross streets for the nearest Rite Aid, because *smart*, and also I’m there most of the time anyway, so if they’re feeling stalker-y, we can pick up face wash and toilet paper together!
So one morning, I was sitting at my kitchen table (not at Rite Aid), toiling away at my day job scripting YouTube videos (like this one about RHOBH’s Erika Girardi), when a helicopter began loudly circling over my head.
If you live around here, helicopters are a normal part of your life. They’re for showing tourists the traffic (*ok, that has to be like 90 percent of the tour), covering hard-hitting news like the Oscars red carpet, extracting people with broken ankles from Runyon Canyon (saw that twice), tracking down an older white gentleman in a Rolls Royce because you’re the cops (saw that, too), and I hear some affluent folk use them to get around town (screw bike sharing — where’s my chopper co-op!).
But when police helicopters circle directly over you, you’re propelled into an LA rollercoaster of emotions. 1. What the fuck… 2. Did I fucking do something? 3. (Ask anyone in ear shot to confirm that there is a helicopter doing something weird.) 4. Oh fuck… (plus, Google frantically because it’s a REAL THING HAPPENING NEAR YOU.)
I can usually pin-point the activity pretty fast, but that morning, I was coming up short.
I pressed my face to my kitchen window as fire trucks, and multiple police SUV’s whizzed by, turning onto the side street on the other end of my block.
Google was still being a total betch. Nothing.
I finally gave up and just assumed an armed assailant had started a brush fire in the hill behind my apartment and I would soon be dead. So, back to work.
Later that day, Ervin asked me if I ever figured out what had happened. As a last-ditch internet search, I typed in “Hollywood Hills breaking news today NOW!! FIND IT STUPID GOOGLE @$*(&%)S($T”
So this dude somehow disarmed Rihanna’s security system, broke into her home, spent the entire night, and later casually claimed he didn’t want to hurt her, he just wanted to have sex with her. Neat.
She was at the Met Gala in New York at the time, thank God. So fucking creepy! Buuuuut no time to focus on all that. The aerial news footage looked hella familiar to me: this crazy expensive house…a 2-minute walk from my apartment. Holy shit.
RIHANNA IS MY NEIGHBOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Me: “HOLY SHIT RIHANNA IS OUR NEIGHBOR!!!”
Me: [Disbelieving glare] “…GET EXCITED, MAN!”
I can’t claim to be a die-hard Rihanna fan, but I love her music. And for real — isn’t she like one of those celebrities who seems totally fun to hang out with? I instantly imagined our first BBQ / pool party together at her house, with her song “Cheers (Drink To That)” echoing through the Hollywood Hills, while chilling in our Fenty x Puma sweats, and Fenty x Sephora highlighter sticks. I MEAN.
RI. HAN. NA.
This has literally been my go-to story for every time someone asks “How are you?” or “What have you been up to?” or “Do you want fries with that?”
OMG, so Rihanna is my neighbor…
If you’re a real estate creeper like me, lookie here at her house. Also, this is me outside her gate because I’m a normal person just going for a walk around the block, ok?! Be cool.
Friends, I am currently on the case, figuring out Rihanna’s exact life, based on this driveway. So far, I’ve deciphered she has many beautiful friends who drive nice cars. A Persian dude in a white Lambo. A sexy black woman in a white Mercedes SUV.
…So, I know nothing. But I love thinking that she may or may not ever actually spend any time here, possibly or not possibly eating bedtime popcorn with too much Trader Joe’s chili lime seasoning on it, and maybe sometimes bingeing Million Dollar Listings.
Just like me.