Unlock Los Angeles with Christine

June 01, 2022

Unlock Los Angeles with Christine

With a city population of almost 4 million people and a reputation for very, very bad traffic, Los Angeles can be intimidating to navigate and feel at home. However, on the Eastside of Los Angeles in her neighborhood of Cypress Park, local artist and media strategist Christine Mai Nguyen is spending less time in her car and more time immersing herself in her community by accessing LA by bike. 

 Whether she’s working on her ceramics at her studio in the morning, going across the Taylor Yard Bridge for some afternoon coffee, or heading out to a DJ gig at night, riding her bike has allowed Christine to become more in-tune with her own pocket of Los Angeles. We went on a morning ride around Cypress Park with Christine to chat with her about her love for LA and how riding her bike has helped her unlock her city. 

Christine is wearing our Heritage Collection helmet in So Silver. Shop her look.

THOUSAND: Tell us a little about yourself and what you do.            

Christine Mai NguyenHi, I’m Christine Mai Nguyen – new-media strategist and hobbyist based in Los Angeles.  I love to explore ceramics, film, video, and photography as well as DJing to inform my work and keep my inspiration sharp. 


T: How long have you lived in LA and what are things you love about it / make it unique?

CMN: I’ve been in LA for 8 years and I think what keeps me here is the work/life balance I’ve been able to maintain.  I know I’m very lucky to be in this position where my hobbies have become my stream of income so I try not to take that for granted. 

T: Tell us a little bit about your neighborhood. What makes it special?       

CMN: I love my neighborhood! This is the first place I’ve lived where I can go weeks without having to use my car!  Everything and everyone is within biking or walking distance.  This is also the first time I’ve truly made an effort to get to know my neighbors and neighborhood pets. My next door neighbor’s cat, Ollie, hangs out with multiple families and I’m fortunate enough to be one of his stops throughout the day.

T: What advice do you have for someone who is looking to use their car less for getting around?

CMN: Plan out your day. Take time in the morning to write out all your plans and errands. If you must, try to make as little stops as possible. Obviously, everyone’s lives are so different. Just try your best and give yourself time.

Christine is wearing our Bike Gloves in Little 5. Shop her look. 

What advice do you have for someone who is looking to use their car less for getting around?

CMN: You really can’t beat the weather in LA.  It seems like every morning is another opportunity to ride!

T: What do you want people who aren’t from LA to know about your city? 

CMN: Every neighborhood is so different! I used to think LA was just Santa Monica. Not very accessible, driving is stressful, and you can tell it takes a toll on the people. I’ve come to learn to enjoy every neighborhood for their different quirks; but if I had to steer friends in a direction, I’d say aim for East LA. There’s just so much variety.        

Ready to ride with Christine? Check out some of her favorite spots in her neighborhood of Cypress Park below.

  1. Taylor Yard Bridge - This just opened up to the public and it’s been so nice to be able to cut across neighborhoods quickly, easily, and safely.   
  2.  La Colombe - I’ve decided that morning to cut over to Frogtown for coffee, this is where I’d go purely out of convenience.  I got there too early so they weren’t open yet! 
  3.  Spoke Bicycle Cafe - I like riding my bike with friends or family here for a late breakfast or lunch. 
  4.  Collage Coffee - If I decide to take a bike ride around a few neighborhoods in my area, there’s a route I like to take where I make only right turns!  How efficient!  Collage Coffee is my shop of choice.  They serve with my ceramics.  Since La Colombe wasn’t open yet (got up too early that morning), I took a loop around through Atwater to get to Highland Park for my morning brew. 
  5.  Tierra Caliente - Stopped here on my way home for a breakfast burrito! The Pottery Studio -  This is where I’ve been spending most of my time.  I like to get a couple hours in before lunch, then come back renewed and ready to trim. 
  6.  Good Housekeeping - I DJ every other Thursday at Good Housekeeping.  Vinyl sets only so I have to pack my records a couple hours in advance.

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