Hey guys! I'm back from LA! Had a great time. Saw a lot of stuff. Took pictures next to Tom Hanks' AND Aunt Meryl's hand prints obv, and did a lot of nice-weather kinds of things. Drove past the Scientology...compound. CRAZY.
So now that I know a little more about LA than I did, I thought I'd share my thoughts with you.
1. It's Always Summer.
I cannot explain it better than that. I mean, I knew it was nice all the time. But it's a whole new thing actually seeing it in action. Everything is...clean. And not because they actually bother to clean it. No. It's clean because the city is not covered from skyscraper to sewer drain in rock salt once a year. The roads seem newly-paved and smoother than a baby dolphin. Which I imagine are VERY VERY smooth.
Also, people just have this air about them like...like they do this kind of thing every day. Like 75 and sunny ISN'T God's greatest gift to humanity (which, hi, it is) it's just another day. Do you have any idea what people do in Chicago when it's 75 and sunny? They stand around outside, marveling at how nice the freaking weather is. In fact, I think 99% of any given Chicagoan's time is spent talking about the weather. It's not a small talk nicety here. It's a way of life.
2. Driving isn't so bad.
That is, as long as you don't accidentally get into random, non-sensical rush hour traffic. Joe and I spent four days driving around LA and we were never particularly inconvenienced by bad traffic. BUT there were a few times that we just got lucky. We'd look over to the other side of the highway, packed with cars. Going into downtown mid afternoon. Like...where are you people going? Go home. Go longboard.
3. Celebrities are not that easy to find.
In our whole trip, Joe and I noticed one celebrity, and it was a That Guy that neither of us can place. All I can say is he's white, curly brown hair, middle-aged, possibly an angry comedian? Damn it, now I have to go back on Google and see if I can find him again. GAH, NO IT WAS NOT GARRY SHANDLING, GOOGLE. GOD.
OH MY GOD I just accidentally spent 40 minutes looking at pictures of photo bombs on College Humor after searching for pictures of "that guy". WHERE AM I?!
4. The Venice Boardwalk is full of crap I would have bought in Middle School.
In the movies, the boardwalk is an open, populated area full of blond women in neon bikinis rollerblading. But in real life, it's just a big paved road with shops on one side and burn outs on the other, playing the only Hendrix song they know and selling things ranging from "palm leaf art" to "hemp hats" to "give me weed and I'll let you pet my dog." The entire outdoor area smelled like patchouli and vegetable oil and there were multiple booths selling chauvinistic novelty tees. I had been warned, of course, that the boardwalk was not All That, but I guess I had to see it to believe it.
5. LA is where 'Nam era hippies go to live out their days.
If you think your parents were former hippies, guess what? They still could have been, if they'd just COMMITTED TO THE ROLE. The only thing we saw more than Priuses (We invented a game, btw, called "If you don't see a Prius in five minutes, you lose.") were old hippies. These are people who have not changed a single thing in their life since Lyndon B. Johnson was president. And why should they? The weather doesn't change from day to day, so how is anyone to know for certain that time itself isn't just standing still? It's like Groundhog Day over there, seriously, except instead of a horrible Punxsutawney February, it's just like...June 10th. June 10th, 1968. For the rest of your life.
And whether or not it really is, hope you like Hendrix.