A Mystical Ride Along With the Infamous Angelyne
LA's billboard celeb dispenses New Age advice.
What is Angelyne? She appears to be a tiny human woman with enormous blonde hair, abundant breasts, and slender yet shapely legs, decorated head-to-toe in pink to match her signature vehicle: a hot pink Corvette Stingray. Her face has been professionally adjusted and is one of a kind—according to the Hollywood Reporter, to photograph it costs $10,000.
Angelyne's birth name and age remain a mystery. It is not impossible that she isn’t of this world, but is rather some mythic entity of unknown origin. A spiritual sage sent here to spread inspiration and positivity through New Age musings and $66 t-shirts. People wave and smile at her everywhere she goes. They stop to take pictures. She gives everyone the time, or maybe time doesn’t exist for her.
Image via The Hollywood Reporter
Since the 1980s, Angelyne has been a Los Angeles icon known for her DIY style of ceaseless and shameless self-promotion. An Angelyne sighting is considered a Hollywood good luck charm; so when I won a ride with her, I felt truly blessed.
Not wanting to be completely alone in my blessedness, I brought along my friend Alice. We met up with Angelyne at the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf in Los Feliz—a rendezvous point of hers for meeting fans.
Sitting down at the Coffee Bean, Angelyne explains why she is late—three unhappy business occurrences had happened to her all in a row, and she needed to talk with her lawyer (she deals with lawyers, not agents because “lawyers are smarter”).
Angelyne wondered what was going on. Alice suggested it was the full moon. The explanation seemed reasonable enough to Angelyne. With the moon as our icebreaker, we had a momentum of conversation that quickly moved from love to dreams to how challenging the past year was for all three of us. Tea-party style, Angelyne shared with her signature drink, the Angelyne, which is African Sunrise tea, coffee, and vanilla powder. Three sips of the Angelyne gave me a jittery buzz I haven’t felt since I was an undergrad, you know, neck deep in a moderate yet comprehensive experimental drug phase.
Suddenly, Angelyne confesses that she once had an out-of-body experience. I confess that I’m finally learning to live in my body instead of my brain. Alice confesses that she’s falling in love with a Scientologist, adding that he doesn’t even believe in dreams.
Offering advice, Angelyne tells Alice not to fight with him about it but to keep her distance, that she doesn’t have to become the person she’s with and to just to enjoy the sex.
Angelyne notices a book sticking out of Alice’s bag and says she’ll open up to a page and point to a quote that will help. It’s Carl Jung’s The Undiscovered Self. Angelyne opens to this quote on page 69 (of course):
“If somebody with little experience and knowledge of dreams should think that dreams are just chaotic occurrences without meaning, he is at liberty to do so.”
Sugared up, overly caffeinated, and impressed with Angelyne’s ability to pick a quote, I’m ready for my ride. The car is a two-seater; so Alice hangs back.
Once in the car, I ask how pink came to be the color of choice. Angelyne explains that long ago, before she was “famous for being famous,” she received visions of pink from a metal pyramid that hung above her bed, aligned with a compass to the cardinal directions.
I ask about the billboards that made her famous, and why she did it in the first place. Retribution against a photographer, she tells me. It was not revenge—“If you want revenge, dig two graves” she laments, quoting Confucius.
Making circles around the neighborhood of Los Feliz, my driver wonders if I can help her solve a dilemma. She tells me she doesn’t feel like she belongs here. She feels like a professor in a kindergarten. She’s very fulfilled except for the fact that she doesn’t feel home. She really wants to complete her mission and go home. She says that home is a state of consciousness where everything feels phenomenal. She’s tired of inhabiting her physical body in the physical world of yin and yang where good has to be balanced with bad. She doesn’t like it, and is completely ready to embrace her true form as loose, boundless energy.
Next thing I know, she’s pondering what our overall purpose is as humans. What is the meaning of our blood, our life force, and how can we share it for the Earth’s benefit once we’re extinct? Before our ride ends, she asks me if I’m afraid of death. I say I don’t know.
She takes me back to the Coffee Bean. I pay $10 for a photo with her in which she hides her face behind a fan. I feel beyond altered for the rest of my day.
What just happened to me? I still don’t have an answer as to who or what Angelyne is—she’s either some kind of guru in pink or is just as lost as the rest of us. Ultimately it doesn’t matter. All she wants is to spread kindness while being unapologetically her truest self. That’s remarkably admirable if you ask me.