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“a woman walks into a bar…” with über journalist & author, Lisa Napoli

on 17/03/14 at 11:04 am

a woman walks into a bar..., Booze News, BoozeBlog

The Voice

woman-barfinal2You’ve heard her dulcet, seductive voice on public radio. Whether talking tech, the economy or lifestyle interviews, you are happily lulled into listening to every word Lisa Napoli has to say. Lisa has also been an Internet correspondent and columnist for MSNBC plus an early chronicler of the dawn of the World Wide Web for the New York Times. As if that’s not enough, she went to Bhutan to help start Bhutan’s first youth-oriented radio station, Kuzoo FM which gave birth to her wonderful book, Radio Shangri-la: What I Learned in Bhutan, the Happiest Kingdom on Earth.

Lisa’s the cool chick I had to get to know when we both worked at the same public radio station offices and I just luckily bumped into her – where else? – in the ladies’ room. We’ve been buds ever since. I’m meeting up with Lisa at the bar at Bottega Louie which is not yet piercingly loud as it’s the dead zone between lunch and dinner. “Hey, Lisa, been doing anything lately?” knowing full-well she is the definition of anti-slacker. Red wine (was it Portuguese?) for her, Bear Republic Racer 5 beer for me.

Lisa’s been researching a book about Joan Kroc, third wife of McDonald’s CEO Ray Kroc. So, you’d think, oh, a society babe, trophy wife, right-winger…but you’d be dead wrong about all of them. Lisa recounts the fascinating life of this woman and where her research is taking her – “spending time talking to a lot of old people who knew Joan Kroc” – and she better hurry. These people are into their platinum years. What is evident is how research for a book like this, about a life like this, can lead down so many rabbit holes into labyrinthian corridors each equally intriguing. If anyone is up to the fishing task, it’s Lisa. It may be a while before this book sees the light of day, but it’s going to be a doozy and I can’t wait to read it. And see the inevitable movie. Seriously, this woman, Joan Kroc, is enthralling.

Lisa and I have lots to catch up on and, unfortunately, some of our conversation must remain covert. You know…the thrall of super sensitive gossip. We did touch on the ever mysterious mystery of ‘men’, of course, particularly the jerky ones. Eventually, we decide we need a change of scenery so we hop off our stools and chatter all the way cross the street to Seven Grand, the whiskey palace, for something a little stronger and sustaining. It’s Happy Hour! $5 for a kickass cocktail. I have a Manhattan and Lisa has the Goldrush, a whiskey, lemon and honey concoction. A perfect place to continue talking and talking about life, love and Joan Kroc. Seriously, Joan Kroc is a bottomless pit of fascination and it’s easy to get sucked into her world.unnamed

Lisa and I could talk forever and it’s amazing how fast the hours slip by but we decide against another drink…deadlines and all that…so it’s time to head off into the sunset. BTW, Lisa can be heard in the afternoon on KCRW and if you want to keep up with what’s going on with her, head over to her Facebook page.

So, it’s goodbye for now, my friend, see you again soon, at the bar!

700 S Grand Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 802-1470

515 W 7th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90014
(213) 614-0737