Wearing shorts and no shirt, with newspaper he walked.
July 22, 2010 1:39 PM   Subscribe

RIP Walking Man of Silver Lake If you've spent a certain amount of time in the Silver Lake neighborhood of Los Angeles, chances are that you noticed the Walking Man. Or perhaps one of the two murals he appears in along Sunset Blvd.

Marc Abrams logged at least 15 miles a day when he wasn't tending to his family medicine practice in the valley. Once you noticed his signature look--shorts, no shirt and a newspaper--it was hard to miss him on his daily rounds. He is remembered all over the internet today. A memorial walk has been planned for this Sunday.
posted by mandymanwasregistered (37 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
"...elderly..." "58-year old"

Oh sweet jesus.
posted by 2bucksplus at 1:50 PM on July 22, 2010 [8 favorites]


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posted by incessant at 1:52 PM on July 22, 2010


Huh. Reminiscent of the fate of the late Jim Fixx.

Also,
.
posted by kcds at 1:56 PM on July 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


.

Sad. I used to see him all the time when I lived in Silver Lake.
posted by cazoo at 1:58 PM on July 22, 2010


Silverlake? Silver Lake? I thought it was the former.
posted by cazoo at 2:00 PM on July 22, 2010


Oh sweet jesus.

I'll bet it's just the conceptual the frame. He was a health-conscious fellow who may have died of natural causes, therefore he must be old for that to happen. Much like when a little black boy shot and killed a little white girl, the byline in the Des Monies register contained the adjectival phrase ".. 8 year old man .."
posted by clarknova at 2:00 PM on July 22, 2010


Wait, he walked 5mph and 200 miles a week? So, 40 hours a week? Wow.
posted by RustyBrooks at 2:00 PM on July 22, 2010


Damn. Dr. Walking Man was a constant during my years in Los Feliz and Silver Lake, too. Three different houses/apartments miles apart, and each one was on his route.
posted by kenlayne at 2:09 PM on July 22, 2010


the byline in the Des Monies register contained the adjectival phrase ".. 8 year old man .."

wow, they start journalism school early in Des Moines
posted by scrowdid at 2:22 PM on July 22, 2010 [3 favorites]


I've been seeing a woman with long brown hair walk briskly, arms swinging, all over my town for about fifteen years now. We used to call her The Walkin' Girl, now she's the Walking Woman. She has a determined gate and she stares down or ahead as she plows along in her windbreaker, definitely doesn't want to talk with anyone. There's also an asian guy I've noticed for about as long who walks daintily along with hands sort of pointed, all over at all times of day. He used to smoke but now he doesn't. Someone told me once that they both live in the same group home. You you don't see them together, though.

No murals yet.
posted by longsleeves at 2:27 PM on July 22, 2010


I had the same thought as 2bucksplus. 58 is nowhere near elderly. Or even retirement age (Unless you're well-off).
posted by dabitch at 2:30 PM on July 22, 2010


with you and 2bucksplus, dabitch. also freaking out because i'm trying to talk myself into getting back in the habit of walking--it really is great exercise & it doesn't cost a thing. but 58 ... elderly ... that is just frightening. and too damn close for comfort.

. walkin' man, .
posted by msconduct at 2:37 PM on July 22, 2010


I'm not sure where the elderly quote is coming from, but if he looked older than 58, it's probably because he was so freaking tan from all of the time spent walking in the sun.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 2:47 PM on July 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


He'd read at night? With a flashlight? I'm certain I'd trip and kill myself if I tried that.

Also:

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posted by jquinby at 2:52 PM on July 22, 2010


> 58 is nowhere near elderly.

It's all relative. My mom is in her mid-'60s, and recently there was a story in her local paper about a man the same age as her who had passed away in some sort of accident. The story described him as "elderly." When she told me about it she indignantly sputtered "I'M NOT ELDERLY!"

Me, I'm 36 and sometimes I feel older than the hills...
posted by The Card Cheat at 3:05 PM on July 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


I thought it was the former

Nope. The latter. It was named after a property developer named Silver.
posted by hwyengr at 3:47 PM on July 22, 2010


Another memory of Abrams from a fellow walking enthusiast.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 3:49 PM on July 22, 2010


From the LA Weekly article:
Despite his dedication to working out (not to mention being a physician), he’s a junk food junkie (“I pretty much have six basic food groups: I eat cookies, cakes, coffee, milkshakes, chocolate and pizza,” he says sincerely. ”My body burns it up. If people exercise the way that I do, they can eat whatever they want”).
"If people exercise the way that I do, they can eat whatever they want." Or not. ::sigh:: Too much like Jim Fixx.
posted by mosk at 3:58 PM on July 22, 2010


sad. wonder what the cause of death. For sheer mniles, though, and oddity, try this guy

http://www.sptimes.com/2007/10/04/Life/Catching_up_with_the_.shtml
posted by Postroad at 4:01 PM on July 22, 2010


wonder what the cause of death

They said he was found in his hot tub. I'm guessing heat stroke or heart attack.

Still, 58 is way too young.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:26 PM on July 22, 2010


"If people exercise the way that I do, they can eat whatever they want." Or not. ::sigh:: Too much like Jim Fixx.

This. So much this. My 59 year old uncle is a triathalete who also does regular long distance bike and kayak trips. He also eats like crap. Which is probably why he's had three heart attacks in four years, the latest resulting in a triple bypass this spring.
posted by elsietheeel at 4:46 PM on July 22, 2010


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posted by ambulance blues at 6:51 PM on July 22, 2010


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Shit, his mileage puts me to shame. I'm back on the road tomorrow.
posted by jsavimbi at 7:29 PM on July 22, 2010


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posted by MythMaker at 8:19 PM on July 22, 2010


The Walking Man was truly a part of California's Gold.

/Huell
posted by dhammond at 9:46 PM on July 22, 2010


A fantastic documentary on Walking Man.
posted by incessant at 9:54 PM on July 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


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posted by kaiserin at 12:10 AM on July 23, 2010


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posted by zaelic at 3:14 AM on July 23, 2010


If you don't have a a dog, and you walk regularly in 2010 America, you are an Institution... a Weirdo. This is troubling to me.
posted by RedEmma at 8:31 AM on July 23, 2010


LA Times obituary

He walked 15-30 miles a day in one neighborhood (usually shirtless and always hunched over a newspaper), so yeah, he sorta stood out.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 9:48 AM on July 23, 2010


If you don't have a a dog, and you walk regularly in 2010 America, you are an Institution... a Weirdo. This is troubling to me.

The set of 'walking regularly' does not include 40 hours a week. With an average of 112 hours spent awake per week, that means he was walking over ONE THIRD OF HIS WAKING LIFE. That definitely qualifies as 'walking IR-regularly'.
posted by FatherDagon at 2:54 PM on July 23, 2010


Yeah, I think it was probably the bare chest and newspaper that made him stand out. Coincidentally, these are also a couple of the things that made him AWESOME.

I just learned today that his medical practice was just a couple of blocks away from where I live. Rest in peace, doc.
posted by dhammond at 11:09 PM on July 23, 2010


Uh oh.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 12:39 AM on July 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Whoa. It sounds like he might have been the hipster version of Conrad Murray.
posted by dhammond at 10:17 AM on July 24, 2010


His death was ruled a suicide.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 12:54 PM on July 26, 2010


How sad.
posted by dabitch at 1:04 PM on July 26, 2010


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posted by PBR at 4:58 PM on July 26, 2010


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