Sometimes you have to leave Los Angeles to get to its best stories. In his latest Letters at 3 A.M. column, Austin Chronicle writer Michael Ventura remembers one near-typical, almost
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apocalyptic night in the lives of three ex-New Yorkers. In 1985 Ventura (then writing for this paper), along with the L.A. Weekly's founding editor, Jay Levin, and managing editor Mayer Vishner, got too smashed on margaritas to drive away from a Mexican restaurant, let alone to a band gig they'd planned to attend. Somehow they get there -- driven miles down Sunset Boulevard by Vishner, who'd never sat in a car driver's seat before.