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LA Revisited

March 30, 2009

So, I’m back home in Vegas (which still sounds strange) after a brief weekend visit to one of my former homes – LA. This was my first trip back to the City of Angels since I left for Dublin, Ireland in August 2006 and, in many ways, the place doesn’t seem to have changed. Still, I did note some differences:

  • Traffic – If anything, LA’s notoriously bad traffic seems to have gotten worse. I’m not really sure how that’s possible, but I’m convinced it’s true. Some low lights — the 101 freeway was an absolute parking lot at 2:30 on Friday afternoon. Sure, I know it was the beginning of a nice weekend and people are trying to escape out to Malibu or Santa Barbara, but really, jam packed at 2:30? That’s just nuts. Saturday in LA was no better as I tried to make my way across town from Los Feliz to Santa Monica. Vermont Avenue was simply disgusting. Jam packed with buses and idiot drivers, and crippled by the fact that no one in LA has yet learned how to time traffic lights. You’d crawl from block to block, only to get stuck at every red light on every corner. It took 25 minutes to drive the four miles from the apartment to the 10, which of course, was also a parking lot. Speaking of parking lots, the last dose of traffic pain came when it took me 20 minutes to get out of the public lot in Culver City on Saturday night. Who the hell knows why – it’s just one of those LA things.
  • Attitude – While LA’s traffic woes seem worse than I remembered, the actual vibe of the city seemed much mellower than when I left. Sure, there was hoking on the freeways but other than that, people seemed really, really relaxed about everything. Maybe it has to do with the fact that there’s a 420 shop on seemingly every block and that the town is awash in really, really good pot. I mean, it’s everywhere and everyone I know seems to have a card. Even without connections, you can get a pretty good contact high just walking down the sidewalk.
  • Restraint – Maybe it’s the shitty economy or maybe it’s all the pot, but the screaming douche factor seemed to be turned way down since I was last in town. Sure, I didn’t spend any time in the heart of darkness that is Beverly Hills, but there still seemed to be fewer scum bags in high-end sports cars and $1,000 suits driving around than I remember.

Overall, it was a productive and interesting visit back to town, and it solidified something that I had been thinking about for awhile. While I still love to visit LA, it’s not a place I need to live in again. I’ve been there, done that and, even though I’m kind of playing around on the fringes of the entertainment industry again, whatever work I may or may not end up doing will hopefully be done from somewhere else. Though a nice little place in Hermosa does have some appeal….

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