I’m in California right now, so here are my thoughts on LA
Okay, huge disclaimer: I have spent about 1 week total in LA in my life. Between this trip and the trip previously, both of which together reflect the entirely of my time here, I understand that I’m not the most qualified reviewer. That being said, it’s just, like, my opinion, man.
TL;DR — I could live in LA, pretty sure. Maybe everyone says that but I doubt it, because even though my mom seemed to think so when I told her this, I have a hard time believing that everyone (and their mom) is cut out for any kind of “city,” LA or not. (Maybe she thought I meant “California?” No idea.)
That all aside: I dig LA okay. There are pros and cons, of course — things I like and things I don’t — but for the most part, I certainly like it more than lame-ass Chicago (which I hated from the very first weekend I ever spent there, after which I boarded my plane home thinking, “I could never, ever live here” — even though I later went on to do just that for five years.)
Here’s my breakdown:
The LA I like:
I mean, duh. Unless you’re one of those sad souls who prefers wet overcast weather or year-round winters, you obviously like southern California weather. And no, it’s no humidity (which I love), but clearly it’s nice enough, and I’m pretty sure this is 99% of what my mom meant when she said “everyone wants to live there.”
“Fresh AF LA”
I’ve never lived in NYC, but I’ve been to both cities. And while I could live in either one (especially since it seems every writer somehow lives in NY), NY always has this sad, obsolete feel to it, like everyone’s still pretending it’s the 70s or 90s (fashion or banking, respectively), and nobody’s ready to move on.
LA has not only moved on, but they’re compulsively “rightthefucknow.”
“Day Trip LA”
Not that I’ve taken any, but I can Google Maps.
I mean, of course. As a “commuter rider” myself, who rides daily back and forth to work and whose only vehicle is my bike, these people are my people.
“Hipster health food LA”
Awww yiss… mothafukkin health food! As I’ve said, I could easily eat a salad twice a day for the rest of my life and be so happy, and if you can keep me ever-impressed with new salad shit, I definitely wouldn’t tell you no.
I stayed in the Arts District last night and went full “privileged romanticization” on that shit — all the industrial lofts and street art (duh.) I want to eat the Arts District, and my airbnb was the stuff of grittiness dreams.
And again, maybe everyone says that, but I doubt it, because if half the reviews left on the airbnb are any indication, it’s clear not everyone is “down home” with “rough around the edges.”
Hells yeah, lemme see what you can do.
I’d never want to be a visual artist / designer myself, and I like to keep my time with them to strict, pre-defined 10-minute blcoks, but I’d be lying if I said they don’t manage to put out the coolest shit. (Of course.)
Oh, the laid-back masculinity of the Latin influence! Not just Mexican food (which I’m sure is fantastic, if I ate it) but an overall cultural and architectural influence that’s thoroughly delightful.
“Little Ethiopia LA”
Dudes, I love me some Ethiopian food — the way it tastes; the way it’s eaten; its simplicity and consistency around the world. 100% my jam, and definitely my favorite of “the world’s” cuisines options.
The LA I’m neutral on:
Call me crazy, but idgaf about traffic — in fact, I find it kinda zen. (And I know, I know — true lunatic over here. Clearly I wasn’t hugged enough as a child or something. I don’t know.)
Where does LA even end, bro? No idea. Not even sure LA knows. It’s all LA.
“The Beach (?)”
Imma be real honest — I don’t really care. You’ll never see this chick fighting you for space on the sand or chugging salt water or whatever it is you people do out there.
The LA I could do without:
One of my favorite parts about living where I do in the south is the utterly laughable lack of tourist options. (Seriously, they have “the airport” listed in the top five hot spots for visitors, and when my mom came to visit I had to drive her several hours to find something halfway interesting for her besides the mall.) And I love this. I love the “boringness” of the area. Keep away, everyone — nothing to see here!
And the opposite was true when I lived in Chicago — some days, it was just so clean and sparkly and checklisty and lame.
I bet if I lived here, I’d never once make it to see Hollywood, and I sure as hell wouldn’t be caught dead on some “celebrity sighting” tourbus like a twat.
I mean, not just Beverly Hills or whatnot, but the overall prissiness of it sometimes.
Yesterday I saw a porcelain-skinned chick (I mean, #skingoals, obvs, but that aside) with primped fingernails that were so long she could scarcely eat, and I thought “you’re probably wonderful, but I’m sorry, we could never be friends.”
Related: “Sensor LA”
On the Myers Briggs scales, LA is, overall, so loudly and unapologetically “sensor” (ATTRACTIVE!! FILM!! SPORTS!! SPORTS CARS!!!! MONEYS!!) that it goes full circle and is sort of adorable
Dude, the amount of west coast skater bros (with long unwashed hair, big ole bro sunglasses and saggy pants) who are pushing 40 (or more??) is too damn high.
To be fair, this dude ain’t my type regardless of age. But it’s eerie and makes me feel sad a little.
“Elitist hipster LA”
I wish I could just eat all their food without enduring their stupid menu item names and overall way of life’ing.
“Asian Food LA”
Does this make me a dick? I don’t know why it should. I don’t think the Asian food industry is so hard-up for validation that they can’t afford an alternative opinion.
I’m just not that into Asian food. I don’t eat fish and all pasta / noodles bores me to tears. So…
Apparently they’re a thing here? Sadly, I think I’ve thrown down on like 3 donuts my entire life, and definitely never any of these overly-sugared monstrosities that all the cool kids are noshing on these days.
I’m not moving to LA
Mostly because I live in the South, have a good thing going, and have no real reason to leave.
But hypothetically. I like it more than most other US cities.
(Pro tip: you can also reach me through that link.)