Aghhghghh! What have I done in the name of love? Well, a lot, actually. I got a tattoo because my boyfriend thought it was hot. He’s gone, I still have the tattoo. Then there’s the time I jumped into the pool at the Downtown Standard naked — but that was more in the name of tequila and a story for another time. Now it’s happened again. I’ve gone too far. I met this great guy with one problem: He’s “outdoorsy,” I am not. My definition of a hike is going from my house in Los Feliz to Fred Segal in West Hollywood — in my car, with the air on. Nature’s dirty. But on our second date, over a glass of wine I hear a voice say, “I totally love hiking!” Wait. That was my voice, and it’s lying. Bad voice. “Great!” he says. “Let’s go to Fryman Canyon this weekend! You won’t feel like you’re in L.A.” Oh no! We’re hiking in a few days, and I’ve got to look hot and athletic. I don’t even know where to go to purchase cute hiking clothes. Is there such a thing? I did the research, and there is . . .
I got lucky at X-Girl with a pair of their very lightweight black cargo cords. These beauties have six pockets for keys, cell, lip-gloss — you know, hiking essentials. A black-on-black, subtle herringbone pattern adds style, and they’re not bulky like other cargos. Plus, they’re 100 percent cotton so they’ll breathe while I can’t on top of the mountain. They roll up to a cropped rise, or I can wear them long so nature doesn’t touch me. The best part of these pants is they have elastic on the sides of the waistband, so they’ll be comfy during the hike and also during the most important part — lunch. X-Girl, 1766 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz, (323) 667-2510.
What’s an outfit without accessories? That’s a trick question. There’s no such thing. I grabbed a hot-pink terry-cloth wristband with a silver X-girl charm sewn inside. It says, “My Superhero name is Ms. Hot Pants and I’m gonna hike my ass off then kiss you silly.” X-Girl, 1766 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz, (323) 667-2510.
My phone rings and it’s my fabulous friend Sir Alistair Rai. He always knows what to wear to any occasion. I once had to go right from a bris to a gallery opening, and he dressed me in a rockin’ jumpsuit. Rai knows fashion. He just started his own line with a few partners. Before I could scream for help, he says, “Darling, I have just the answer! My new tank, available at Kitson, will give you peace, love and patience.” Wow. All that from a tank top? I’m in. It has the image of a pensive Gandhi on the front for inspiration. Rai said, “Honey, if Gandhi can walk 241 miles for freedom, you can hike a mountain to get laid!” Sir Alistair Rai’s tanks and tees are available at Kitson, 115 S. Robertson Blvd., L.A., (310) 859-2652; also at Rita’s Rags, 1211 Montana Ave., Santa Monica, (310) 393-4588.
I swing into Atmosphere, a trendy, eclectic store, in search of a sassy sweatshirt. A sale was on and that made me happy. I spotted this adorable hand-stitched, cream zip-up by JW Los Angeles and had to have it. Two pockets with a brass zipper, it goes with everything, and the unfinished seams are hip while the colorful stitching brightens my mood. Continuing the theme, the word peace is stitched down the sleeve in blue, and a lovely wreath of flowers forms the peace symbol on the back. There’s also a sweet bluebird on the front. Other pluses: I can take it off and tie it around my waist if I get too hot, or zip it up when the wind-chill factor kicks in. Sold! Atmosphere, 1728 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz, (323) 666-8420.
Just For Kicks
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I couldn’t find cute hiking shoes anywhere. Ready to cancel my date, I head to Pink’s to drown my sorrows in chili fries when I spot a colorful storefront with a catchy name, Arch and Sole. Maybe there’s hope on La Brea . . . I spy surprisingly cute trail shoes by Pearl Izumi called SyncroSeek, and I love them. They come in the colors “martini” and “fizz” — now that’s my kind of shoe. Designed specifically for light hiking, they cause no irritation to the wearer, they’re really cushiony, and the grippy interior provides major traction. That means I won’t fall down in front of my date — at least while I’m sober. Arch and Sole, 745 N. La Brea Ave., Hollywood; (323) 857-1775. (See Mahmoud Juma — he rocks.)
Mission accomplished! If I say so myself, I look cute and hike-a-licious. The lesson here is that faking it causes way more anxiety than it’s worth. That is, until Mr. Hottie Outdoors Man picks me up in his truck and whisks me away to Fryman Canyon. I’ve gotta say, while I’m walking behind him, the views are breathtaking . . . and the canyon’s not so bad either!
Actress Shari Albert blogs in between takes for deepfriedrice.com and