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Reporting from the ring

Story by Amanda El Khoury

I had no clue what to expect as I walked through the doors of the New York City Boxing Club to train and spar with boxers.

The fighters at the gym were blasting music and doing various exercises, ranged from professional grade to amateur. Many were jump roping, some were beating on a punching bag, and others were sparring in the ring.

I stood at the entrance, processing what I was about to get myself into. I had done martial arts for nine years and reminded myself that if I could handle doing that, then I could successfully train like a boxer.

I’m a 22-year-old woman, and while I exercise regularly throughout the week, I was about to do the same rigorous training routine that boxers do on a daily basis.

To read more click here.

Confessions of a scare actor

Jacqueline models her zombie attire for Fright Fest. Photo Courtesy of Catherine Kalisch

As fog fills the hallway of the abandoned RV with the word zombie smeared in blood across its side, I crouch down and wait until feet appear on the floor near me. A few timid feet begin to appear through the mist I suddenly leap in front of them, nearly brushing their skin, with the sudden startle, the scare is in place. They unleash a blood curdling scream that leaves my ears ringing.

Working at Six Flags Magic Mountain Fright Fest as a scare actor for the past three years has been one hell of a rewarding ride of terror. The maze I work for is the 13th scariest maze in the world, Aftermath. It is a post-apocalyptic world filled with smoke taking over the air and fire that can be felt throughout the entire maze.

Being able to clock into work, put on aged ripped clothing and makeup to finish the look of the baby eating zombie I portray is an experience I will never forget to tell my grandchildren.

The scare tactics I strive for are to be something the guests are not expecting. Screaming in their face can scare a few people but not everyone. It is an minimal attempt at scaring and people can not be feared by something they can also do.

Using shaker cans will help the scares but you can tell the creativity is lacking. Scare actors often use it to shake it near or behind the guests face, or to be slammed against something in the maze in order to make a loud noise. It may cause guests to freak for a split second but it works to an effortless extent.

I use a variety of different scares to spice up the humor and fear when guests enter Aftermath. I aim to give the guests a scare they will not be ready for, instead of slamming noise makers and screaming into their helpless ears.

The scare I take deep pleasure in, is appearing when they least expect it. It is a thrill to see the reactions of the guests when they see me sitting at the front of an abandoned taxi, with the fog rising, for one second and then appear directly in their face the next. It is the notion of not expecting a trick without a trap door or placed scare area.

Right after I get the first group of scares I move to the rest of the guests walking through it. I simply move my body at a slower pace while moving along through the crowd. I quickly get right into guests faces and mimic what they do to avoid me going after them. Another scare is to quickly move when a guest is checking out the setup of the adondanced RV. It sets up the perfect trap to appear in their face before they turn their head to notice me looking dead as can be into their eyes.

It brings laughs to large groups of people who are there to either enjoy the scenery or get scared trying.

The mind of a scare-actor is one of convoluted thought, lying and waiting for the next opportunity to scare an unsuspecting victim is an adrenaline rush not many get to experience for a living.

Halloween events for adults around Los Angeles

Halloween as an adult is a far cry from when we were children.  Candy and trick or treating has been replaced with screams in haunted houses, alcohol at parties, and those wholesome outfits with some that even the most of us would never imagine being worn.

What to do for the Halloween season is a question that many of us face every year, whether to go out with friends at a club, go to a bar, or check out a haunted maze.  Here are a few ideas for what is going on this year.
Los Angeles Haunted Hay Ride:
Select nights now through Oct. 31.  Tickets $28

In its fourth year, the maze has been made longer and wetter for those brave enough to enter.  Hay filled wagons wander through the forest in order to tell a tale that may strike fear into the deepest parts of all those that travel the road.  “The Congregation” tells the story of a town that perished in a church fire under the watchful eyes of a demonic boy preacher, and what happened in that town.

Not restricted to just the hay ride, the LAHHR contains a “dark maze” where you choose your path, but the wrong turns may lead you farther into the maze and not towards the exit.
West Hollywood Halloween Carnival:
Wednesday Oct. 31, 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.  FREE

Thousands of Halloween revelers flock to the Santa Monica Blvd. in West Hollywood for a night of partying and fun in celebration.  One of the world’s largest Halloween celebrations, there is plenty to do for everyone, with streets shut down from Doheny Drive to La Cienega Blvd.

Including multiple music stages, a parade, and anything goes attitude by many party-goers, this is definitely not a place for the easily offended or children.

Dress in your best outfit and be ready to party with your friends, the 2011 version organizers claimed 500,000 attendees.
Halloween Pub Crawl:
Friday Oct. 26 5:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m., Saturday Oct. 27 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m., Wednesday Oct. 31 5:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.  Three-day tickets $10

Featuring some of the hottest bars in Hollywood with specials made special for the event, this is one of the most expected pub crawls in PubCrawls yearly calendar.  Two dollar beers, half off mixers, and four dollar shots, this could be a long night for anyone willing to partake in this madness.

There will be multiple venues, up to eight partaking in the festivities, but with each one open for only three hours for PubCrawler’s need to hurry to hit their favorite bars on the list.  Costumes are preferred, and their website recommends them or warns you may be made fun of.

It is recommended that anyone wanting to participate in the event catch a bus, walk, bike ride, or take a taxi to the event, and arrange for a designated driver to pick you up when it is over.

Big Worm’s Sherwood Scare (all proceeds benefit Big Worm’s Cystic Fibrosis Foundation)
Friday Oct. 26 through Sunday Oct. 28 7:00p.m. to 10:00 p.m., Oct. 31 7:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. $3 Donation per Person

Scares for charity, make this a good haunted house to visit in the area.  A 2,000 square foot haunted house built by filmmakers and craftsmen make up a immersive haunted house experience.

All proceeds will be donated to benefit Big Worm’s Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, with a minimum donation of $3 per person as an entry fee.

Multiple more events are planned around the city, from free to expensive, to entertain all those wishing to do something for Halloween.  Check out your local websites, newspapers, and news stations for other events happening around the city.

Reporting from the ring

I had no clue what to expect as I walked through the doors of the New York City Boxing Club to train and spar with boxers.

The fighters at the gym, who were blasting music and doing various exercises, ranged from professional grade to amateur. Many were jump roping, some were beating on a punching bag, and others were sparring in the ring.

I stood at the entrance, processing what I was about to get myself into. I had done martial arts for nine years and reminded myself that if I could handle doing that, then I could successfully train like a boxer.

I’m a 22-year-old woman, and while I exercise regularly throughout the week, I was about to do the same rigorous training routine that boxers do on a daily basis.

The coach, Frank Silva, a boxer for 21 years and a trainer for 12 years, has trained Vinc Pichel, Jared Papazian and Joseph Henle to name a few. He approached me and said I’d be jump roping first. He led me to the mat where other fighters were already doing it. I was very nervous to jump rope around individuals who were doing it so gracefully, but they each encouraged me to practice at my own pace. I eventually jumped for about six minutes, which definitely got me warmed up.

I wasn’t prepared for the next part which was getting my hands wrapped. The wraps felt odd since I’m not used to having anything on my hands. Silva then put boxing gloves on me and I felt like a real boxer. It was an amazing feeling, but the gloves felt as if I had weights on my hands.

The next thing Silva had me do was punching combinations on a punching bag. This is where I finally lost my nerves and became excited. I felt extremely comfortable hitting the bag because punching was one of my favorite things to do in martial arts.

Silva coached me on how to properly jab and throw different punches, such as a hook and uppercut punches. I let out my anger in a healthy way as I practiced on the punching bag. Once I finished I was more than ready and couldn’t wait to get my chance in the ring against a fully trained boxer — but I still had more practice to do.

Silva instructed me on how to correctly punch on the double-end bag, a bag attached to the ceiling and the floor that bounces back and forth imitating a moving target. This was one piece of equipment that I wasn’t fully comfortable with. When I punched this bag it moved around a lot more than the other punching bag, but after a minute I felt more at ease.

I continued to practice my punching and the weight of the gloves finally started to effect my arms since it felt as if I were lifting weights. It was hard to continue to punch, but I’m a fighter at heart and refused to give up.

After I finished practicing on the double-end bag, Silva had me practice my punching and blocking. I hit the focus mitts that Silva had on his hands as opposed to the punching bag. I was beginning to feel tired, but I pushed through it and continued to punch as hard as I could.

The last thing I had to do to finish training like a boxer was step into the ring. I wasn’t nervous, — on the contrary, I was ready. I felt very strong and happy to be stepping between the ropes.

My opponent was Roger Carmona, a 16-year-old amateur boxer with a record of three wins and one loss. Carmona fights between the weights of 120 to 129.

My brother, Tarik Khoury, a 160 pound full time amateur boxer and part time amateur mixed martial artist with four wins and one loss, put my head gear on and rubbed Vaseline all over my face so the opponent’s punches would slide off to avoid busting up my face.

When the bell rang, Carmona and I touched gloves as a sign of respect. He reminded me of the tasmanian devil with his quick strikes and his ability to bounce around the ring. Everything around me became silent as I focused all of my energy onto Carmona.

I threw different punching combinations his way that connected and my confidence grew as the seconds ticked away. He hit me many times, but I couldn’t feel the strikes — It was like adrenaline had taken over my entire body. The sound of the buzzer signaled our one-minute break.

At this point (the last 3 minutes), I was dead tired. It felt as if I had worked out every muscle I have, but my adrenaline and my determination kept me going. When the final buzzer rang we touched gloves again.

“It was a little weird because I never hit girls,” Carmona said. “This was the second time I got in with a girl and it was fun, but weird at the same time because I can’t hit them so I have to control myself a bit more.”

I’ve never felt more confident in myself than when I stepped out of the ring. It was as if I accomplished something great, and I feel like I absolutely did. I successfully trained like a boxer.

I was intimidated in the beginning because I was in the same gym as experienced boxers. The fact that I am a woman going into a gym that’s full of men never crossed my mind. I didn’t feel that the men looked at me differently because I’m a woman. All of the fighters and the coach made me feel very confident and motivated. I felt comfortable in my own skin as I stepped into the ring and I knew that I could stand my ground against a fully-trained boxer.

“I think you did good for your first day,” Silva said. “Some people come in scared, but you were just nervous. I think at the bag you felt the most comfortable.”


Unconventional classes spark critical thinking at CSUN

Dr. Ranita Chatterjee and her students meet twice a week to analyze the world of Harry Potter, Hogwarts, and Horcruxes, one of several offbeat courses at CSUN. Photo credit: Charlie Kaijo / Assistant Photo Editor

It’s not everyday a guest lecturer is 10 years old.

Some courses at CSUN offer an unusual experience.

Classes like Harry Potter (ENGL 495HP), popular culture (ENGL 313), the supernatural (ANTH 424) and the politics of hip-hop (PAS 368) may not seem like university appropriate coursework, but beneath the surface of these unique topics, professors are using their passions to transform the traditional college world.


Critical thinking with Harry Potter
The English department offers “Harry Potter,” which is a capstone course for English majors and select graduate students. This semester is the second time this course has been offered, and each time there is a 40-student waiting list for the course in which only 20 students can enroll, according to Dr. Ranita Chatterjee.

“Seniors need a class where they can bring all of their theoretical tools to analyze literature, like how to think critically, how to write essays, and how to do oral presentations, so it doesn’t really matter what you get them to read,” Chatterjee said. “I just thought it would be fun to do ‘Harry Potter’ because, you know, everyone likes to read them.”

Chatterjee has read the series five times all the way through, but she has read individual books in the collection anywhere from six to seven times.

This discussion-based, interactive course uses theories like feminism, Marxism and psychoanalysis to examine aspects of the books.

“The students have the opportunity to figure out how these novels work in terms of the commercial marketplace,” Chatterjee said. “Why the popularity?”

Because these books appeal to children and adults, Chatterjee is trying something new this semester. Her 10-year-old daughter and friends, who have read the series, will come into the classroom to discuss the books with college-aged students. This exercise is partially designed to remind college students how they felt during their first read-through of “Harry Potter.”

“At least the college students can remember what it is 10-year-olds find so fascinating and exciting versus what they are doing. After awhile, you lose the magic from analyzing so much,” Chatterjee said.


Batman, analyzed
Popular culture, another course provided by the English department, is also in high demand, according to professor Shaun Cullen, who uses unconventional teaching methods like playing video games and reading comic books.

“Last week, we read the comic book ‘The Dark Knight Returns,’ and some of the students were actually complaining about how hard it was to read. It’s not easily consumable popular culture by any means,” Cullen said.

His classes include both a lecture period and a discussion period in which an easily disagreeable question is posed to the students.

The course is an important topic for the educational sphere because pop culture is the primary way that people explain their political attachments and articulate their place in society, Cullen said.

“That moment where students appreciate even something that they thought was simple before they got to the class, that there is a more complex structural level or that there are meanings being communicated to them that are almost subconscious, that is exciting to me. When I leave class, I am usually very sweaty because I like to have fun with it,” he said.

Getting students to think critically about what they consume is a key aspect of Cullen’s course.

“We were talking about ‘The Dark Knight,’ and someone said, ‘It’s just entertainment,’” Curran said. “Well, what is entertaining about watching someone beat the crap out of another person? In real life, you would immediately tell them to stop. I know it’s not real, but why would you want to see it? By being able to analyze this on a deeper level, you get more enjoyment out of it in the end.”


Another popular campus course is the anthropological look into the supernatural. Dr. Sabina Magliocco has been teaching courses on the supernatural nearly every other year since 1987 when the “satanic panic” was sweeping the nation.

“I’m a folklorist so I’m always interested in weird stuff, but I was very interested in some of the ways that legendary material was manifesting in everyday life,” Magliocco said.

The course has evolved over time because issues change and become history. Currently, Magliocco’s favorite topics to teach are neopaganism and issues from the book “Mama Lola: A Vodou Priestess in Brooklyn,” a case study of a contemporary voodoo priestess who practices in a Haitian migrant community in New York.

The class is usually in high demand because students are really interested in the course topics, Magliocco said.

“If students do the readings, and if they are willing to put in the work, they get a lot out of it. If you are expecting a show like what you see on television, it’s not going to work for you,” she said.


Dr. Anthony Ratcliff and friends started a radio show that played underground hip-hop and interviewed activists that were using music as a teaching tool back in his Massachusetts graduate school days.

Today, Ratcliff is one of those activist teachers, blending the history of hip-hop music with contemporary issues and politics.

“Students have to understand the history behind it to recognize where it is now,” Ratcliff said.

Though history is an important aspect of the course, he understands the necessity of addressing where the industry is headed due to technological advances.

“I’m trying to get them (students) to understand and use technology to recognize that it allows us to have the history of hip-hop at our fingertips,” Ratcliff said.

This semester, Ratcliff is using Twitter for classroom conversation. He encourages students to tweet questions or comments during lectures and presentations with the hashtag #globalmoves2.0. He also allows students to blog about their projects on WordPress.

“A group of students will work together and they will upload their assignments on there. It’s really just a way for them to connect to other people that are doing hip-hop studies,” he said.

Some students are disappointed in the reading and writing requirements for the course because they think hip-hop is all about partying and having fun, Ratcliff said. However, most students enjoy this course, and it usually fills up quickly.

“Culture, and I see hip-hop as a culture, is not just about commerce,” Ratcliff said. “It’s not just about what you can buy and sell. It’s also about creativity and taking young people who are in very bad situations and giving them opportunities and avenues out of that.”

Class offerings vary by semester and can be hard to find an open spot, so students should plan ahead before enrolling in any of these courses.

‘Paranormal Activity 4’ disappoints horror fans

Another October means more scary movies, people preparing for Halloween, and another Paranormal Activity.  Coming out as fast as they can produce them, much like the Saw series, there are no new surprises in filming technique or presentation.  The lack of originality is what ultimately dooms the movie.

“Paranormal Activity 4” starts out with a recap of what occurred in Paranormal Activity 2 with Katie and Hunter, which will be important throughout the movie.  We follow the lives of a family in Henderson, NV, after the neighbor’s young son comes into their lives and house.  With the new temporary addition to their family, weird supernatural activities start affecting the life of Alex, the daughter.

Convinced that it is the new boy, Robbie, bringing these bad omens into the house, Alex and her boyfriend Ben set up cameras throughout the house with the families’ laptops.  Robbie admits to having a special friend that only he can see, and later gets upset when Ben says he can see Robbie’s friend, telling him later that he will pay for everything.

Unable to convince her family of something going on in the house, the movie takes a dark and surprise twist at the end leaving the audience jumping out of their seats in fear.

Having an ability to be a scarier movie, and not pouncing on that, really affects the overall movie. The setting up of “scary” sequences with something popping out or happening is not ominous enough.  In today’s world of horror movies it takes something else to scare a crowd, while many will scream and grab onto others when these happens, delving into the fears of moviegoers is necessary for a good horror movie.

There are shocking scenes, but watching the movie felt like a recycle of the last three, with new characters and maybe a couple new tricks in the demons’ hauntings.

Like the prequels, the movie is shot through a handheld video camera, and laptop cameras replace those of security cameras.  Paranormal’s storytelling style is passé and makes the story drag on longer for the audience.  Reverting back to the prequels, we follow the family on a nightly basis through the use of the laptop cameras and Alex’s hand held camera work.  Too many times there is a lack of action and a need to speed the movie up.

Rehashing a tireless movie series to a scare hungry movie crowd, gets the crowds in the door, but few will leave scared or pleased with what they saw or expected.  Don’t go into the movie expecting to see a new take on horror or something that is going to make you stay up for days on end afraid to sleep, and you may get your money’s worth.

The fact that it was left open at the shocking end leaves room for a sequel, but hopefully there will be no more rehashes of a story that has been told and plot twisted to death.  Save your money and wait for a movie that can scare you to your core.

Apps that will scare

Halloween is close enough that you can taste the candy corn but it is still days away. You might be losing the excitement of Halloween.

Here are some apps to keep your Halloween spirit up.

1. Halloween Countdown by Energize Software
It doesn’t hurt to have an app that reminds you how much closer Halloween is getting. Customize the background and add your own creepy music. The floating image will grow in size as time gets closer to Halloween.
Available for iPhone

2. True Ghost Stories by Joe Kwon, Inc
Read true ghost experiences from those around the world. The app will have its top 10 weekly stories and they will range from ghost to possessions. Read and feel the goose bumps cover your entire body.
Available for iPhone

3. Ghost-O-Meter by Adrian3
How many ghosts linger near you? This app will detect the ghosts that surround you. Walk around the room and watch as the needle spikes but be quick since they do flee. Check your records and watch how many ghosts the meter detected.
Available for iPhone and Android

4. Halloween Scary Prank by Delshad Kogi
This app isn’t intended for you but more to scare your friends. Watch as they get a scary surprise if they don’t solve the puzzles.
Available for iPhone

5. Stupid Zombies by GameResort LLC
Can’t handle anymore fear from the apps above? This app will be a fresh air. Use the shotgun to bring down the brainless zombies. You will need to use strategy to try to get a perfect score.
Available for iPhone and Android
Free for the Lite version
$.99 for the full version

Horror flicks for Halloween night

It is that time of the year again.  Houses are decorated with pumpkins and witches, the stores are stocked with costumes and parties are running wild. If you find yourself not wanting to go out on Halloween night, consider staying home watching horror films that you might never consider watching.

Pick up your favorite food and candy, and cozy up in front of the television with these films that are perfectly made for Halloween.
From ghosts to serial killers, these films will bring fear to your Halloween night.

1. The Caller (2011)
After moving into an apartment Mary Kee begins to get phone calls from a woman whose identity might seem unreal. The revelation of this mysterious phone caller disrupts Mary’s already troubled life.

This film takes an interesting twist on ghosts who try to contact the living. This mysterious ghost is emotionally unstable and has the power to change the future. Every time the phone rings there is anticipation that it’s not the ghost calling.

Available on Netflix

2. Forget Me Not (2009)
After Sandy Channing’s friends begin to die and vanish from ever existing, she has to figure out why a vengeful spirit is after her.

These spirits are a mixture of the ghosts from House on Haunted Hill (1999), Silent Hill (2006) and the Grudge. These particular entities have human like qualities, which give them an advantage when they stalk their next victim.

Available on Netflix

3. Fear Island (2009)
What happens when five friends go on a secluded island? They get killed off by an unknown killer who is out for revenge. The secret of two brothers risks the lives of group.

Once you feel you got the whole story figured out you get blindsided by the actual truth. The mystery of the killer becomes a mystery in its own. This film keeps you on your toes and you never know who will be next and who is meant to survive.

Available on Netflix

4. Deadheads (2011)
Mike Kellerman wakes up to find out he is a zombie and is in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. He and his new zombie friend Brent are the only zombies who still have human like thoughts. They go on an adventure to find Mike’s one and only love.

This films shows love can never die. It is a romantic comedy about a zombie doing everything he can track down his girlfriend. The audience gets to see the film in the perspective of a zombie. There are plenty of laughable moments and even moments of sadness for the zombies.

Available on Netflix

5. Cabin in the Woods (2011)
Five friends decide to take a trip in a deserted cabin and find out the horrors that hide beneath the grounds of the cabin.

This film reinvents every slasher and supernatural horror films. It puts five friends in a secluded area but gives them control over their own fate.

Available in the Redbox

6. The Shrine (2010)
American journalists visit a village in Poland to investigate the disappearances of backpackers, who have been victims of human sacrifice. On their arrival they discover that they should fear more than human sacrifice.

The mystery of this film will keep you interested while the gruesome scenes will have you turning away.

Available on Netflix

7. Grave Encounters (2011)
Paranormal investigators visit a haunted hospital for their reality show. As the night progresses they discover to be the next victims of the ghosts who were once demented patients.

This movie is filmed as a documentary. This fictional movie takes the idea of the show Ghost Hunters but it shows more than floating orbs. With the cameras that are installed all over the hospital the audience is in a position to see things that not even the characters in the film see.

Available on Netflix

8. White (2011)
Pink Dolls, a girl band, were down on their luck until they discover a video with an old song and decide to take it as their own. Now one by one the girls in the band are beginning to have accidents by a ghost related to the song.

This Korean film, with English subtitles, will have you glued onto the television set. The question of why these girls are dying and how their deaths are connected to the song continues to replay in your mind.

Available on Netflix

9. The Horsemen (2009)
A detective is sent on a case to track down a serial killer who tortures and murders his victims. Soon he discovers that these murders aren’t random and are connected to Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

This film doesn’t use the fear factor but more of the gruesome images. The audience will be taken in an adventure to uncover the truth behind the murders.

Available on Netflix

10. Haunting of Whaley House (2012)

A group of friends investigate the most haunted house in town to prove that the ghosts that dwell there are real. When they get trapped they find out not only are the ghosts real but they aren’t friendly.
These ghosts can possess and control the living and they will not stop until they get what they want.

Available in the Redbox

Clubs and venues you should hit at night

Being so close to Hollywood, there is no shortage of nightclubs for CSUN students to hit up. Finding the good ones in the muck of overcrowded, overpriced and uber-exclusive clubs is a different story. Here is a guide to the best alternative clubs for CSUN students that are tired of hearing that same Rihanna song five times a night.

Part Time Punks
Blasting hits and b-side gems from the best indie artists of the past 30 years, Part Time Punks is the perfect club for the rare form of indie music lover that actually enjoy dancing. Holding residency at the Echo since 2005, this club has established itself as the premier club in L.A. for punk, post-punk and shoegaze. Part Time Punk founder and DJ Michael Stock keeps the weekly setlists fresh because of his vast vinyl collection that is offset by having live bands play the club some weeks. But the weeks Part Time Punks is best is during their themed nights. From Brit-Pop Nite, to Bowie Nite and the ever popular Smiths/Morrissey Nite, people of all ages come to dance to their favorite artist or genre all night long. With Stock pushing the right buttons to get the smoking kids off the patio and onto the dance floor, Part Time Punks is the perfect place to L.A. sway.
When: Sundays 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Where: The Echo/Echoplex
1822 W. Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90026
Admission: 18+, $5 to $10
Drinks: Reasonable price, Full bar

Blue Mondays
Aptly named after the 1983 New Order hit, Blue Mondays is the best ’80s club in L.A. The club is a great escape from the surrounding top 40 clubs, as it is located at Boardners in Hollywood every Monday night. The crowd is the best part of Blues Mondays as there are no pretensions, just people ready to dance to some of the best pop, goth and new wave of the ’80s. But if the DJ puts on a Cure song that’s just a little too depressing, there is a electro/indie room on the patio that acts as a good temporary escape from the ’80s. The only downfall for Blue Mondays is that drink prices can be a little excessive but that’s what car-bar was invented for.
When: Monday 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Where: Boradners
1652 Cherokee Ave. Hollywood, CA 90028
Admission: 18 +, $3 to $7
Drinks: Pricey, Full bar

El Cid
When you walk through the doors of El Cid, you no longer feel like you’re in L.A. The sunset blvd. entrance is anything but glamorous, but once through the doors, you’re led down steps and through a jungle to the literal underground club. While the club hosts many live music acts, ranging from hip-hop collectives to garage rock bands, El Cid is known as a flamenco club. The flamenco singers and dancers are perfect compliments to the tropical décor. The inside of the club has great music and dancing, but the back patio is the best part of El Cid. Kicking back by the fire pit with a cheap drink surrounded by towering trees is a great escape from the concrete of LA.
When: Wednesday through Saturday 6 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Sunday 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., 4 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.
Where:El Cid
4212 W. Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90029