Dagoberto Gilb’s “Love in L.A.” is a love story that is set on a freeway in Las Angeles. Now this is an unusual setting for a love story, however, “Love in L.A.” is a different kind of love story.
The story opens up with Jake, a careless and irresponsible guy sitting in traffic. Gilb states that Jake is sitting in “near motionless traffic.” This symbolizes Jake’s life. Jake drives a ’58 Buick which is out of date and old. He wishes that this car had more accessories such as an FM radio, crushed velvet seats, and heat and air. He believes that these things will lead him to a better life of women in fancy dresses that idolize him. However, Jake is doing nothing to make these wishes come true. Much like the traffic, Jake’s life is motionless.
The story progresses when Jake snaps out of his fantasy just in time to witness himself crash into the Toyota in front of him. This is another example of the carelessness of Jake. Also, Jake contemplates driving away from the accident but realizes that the traffic jam would make it extremely difficult. So he pulls over and gets out inspecting his car. Instead of checking on the others, Jake is self-centered and looks over his car first. After making sure his car is not damaged from the accident, Jake goes to talk to the lady that he hit. He immediately tries to sweet-talk the girl and get her phone number.
The girl, whose name is Mariana, is the daughter of an immigrant family from Venezuela. Her parents have worked extremely hard to afford her new Toyota, which is now pretty banged up from the crash. Jake makes another careless comment on how easy her car is to tear up, and then continues to say that they should go out for breakfast and talk this over. This isn’t the only time that Jake tries to avoid the situation. When Mariana asks for his driver’s license, Jake makes up an extravagant lie about how he is a musician and left his license in his other pants. He even goes to say that he does...