Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Los Angeles County Coroner's Office Gift Shop: Bargains dead ahead

Not just law and science serving the community, but tasteless souvenirs, too!
This is where you park your carcass.
Come on in!
Something for the golf corpse.
What do you get the person who has everything?
How about a body bag?
Children's Corner (no, really!)
There's more than one way to "check out" at the Coroner's Office,
you know.

The very name "L.A. County Coroners Office Gift Shop" is a punchline unto itself, and thoroughly qualifies as an eccentric roadside attraction. Never at a loss for dubious taste, the city of Los Angeles provides a gift shop whimsically called "Skeletons in the Closet" in a room off the main entrance of their staid, bland-looking government building on North Mission Road, just off the 101. Who says death has to be gloomy? While you're identifying the mortal remains of your dearly departed, why not pick up a souvenir or two? They've got t-shirts, golf balls, and doormats emblazoned with a chalk-outlined corpse, dry cleaning bags that simulate body bags, even a Children's Corner (or is it Children's Coroner?). My only quibble is no mention of Quincy, TV's crusading L.A. medical examiner. I'd have gladly spent a few bucks for anything with Jack Klugman's face on it. The gift shop may be tasteless but the proceeds do fund a program to educate youth about the dangers of drunk driving, so lighten up, wouldya! Here's their website:

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