11 Ways You Know You Live in Los Angeles
To celebrate the fact that my husband and I just bought a home in Los Angeles, I wanted to write a silly, fun listicle about things that are VERY LA. We first moved to LA in 2007, then moved to the Bay Area from 2010-2013, then back to LA in July 2013. I’ve grown to really love this city, flaws and all.
Los Angeles has a lot of stereotypes, and yes, some of them are true. But don’t believe everything you hear. It’s a great city. For my fellow Angelenos, here are 11 ways you know that you live in Los Angeles.
1. You add 20+ minutes to whatever Google Maps says.
You know that traffic is much worse than what Google Maps says. And Siri is clearly from Northern California because she has no idea where you are in Los Angeles.
2. Stop signs are merely suggestions.
Apparently, stop signs don’t apply to everyone. I’ve seen people follow the car in front of them through a stop sign. A stop sign is not a buy-one-get-one-free kinda deal, but for some Angelenos, it is a free for all. Why do you think the phrase California roll applies to LA?
3. 60 degrees means it’s chilly out.
When I first moved here, I was freaking excited about the weather. Then I saw people in sweaters. Having survived NYC winters, I thought it was nuts that everyone was wearing sweaters and Ugg boots when it was 60 degrees. Now I’m a weather wuss, wearing sweaters and scarves when it’s less than 60 degrees. IT HAPPENS.
4. Rain freaks you out.
Again, I know this sounds lame, but if it rains here, I hibernate as if it was a snow storm. We rarely get rain so this causes all sorts of panic. Don’t judge us. (I know you are!)
5. YOU KNOW THAT THIS IS TRUE.
I used to have to commute on the 405. During my hour-plus commute, I listened to countless audiobooks (not cool Marley & Me for making me cry in traffic!), thousands of podcasts, and once saw a man flip everyone off as he drove by.
6. You have a favorite workout.
There are a lot of beautiful, fit people here. Soon, you find yourself obsessing over some new workout that you discovered. For me, that’s Dance It Out with Billy Blanks Jr. and Sharon Catherine Blanks. It’s the best cardio dance kick-butt workout ever. LOOK AT WHAT’S HAPPENED TO ME.
7. You never go to Santa Monica unless you live there.
Santa Monica, you pretty starfish, why are you so far away? You have the beach, great restaurants, and the smell of the ocean. You even have an all-vegan grocery store. WHY are we so frightened to go to Santa Monica? Oh, because it takes FOREVER to get there.
8. You’ve eaten at a vegan restaurant.
Crossroads, Gracias Madre, Cafe Gratitude, Veggie Grill, and Native Foods Cafe—you’ve eaten there and you’re not even vegan. You don’t care. The food is good. (As a vegan, I love that omnivores love these places, but damn it, stop hogging all the reservations at Gracis Madre! Kidding! Love you, omnis!)
9. You show up to a party one hour (or more) late.
When I hosted my first party, no one showed up for the first hour. I was pretty sure that I had no friends until I realized that everyone shows up an hour or more late. Just because. Probably traffic. Most likely, out of pure laziness. We are that laidback. So if you move here and no one comes to your party, don’t fret. They’ll show up…eventually.
10. You know someone who works in the entertainment industry OR You work in the entertainment industry.
This stereotype is true. It’s a fact. Everyone here works in TV or film or WANTS to work in TV or film. Except for me. I am the unicorn. But I married someone who works in TV so I’m only 50-percent unicorn.
11. You don’t understand why everyone in NYC and SF hates your city.
When I told people in SF I was moving back to LA, I got the “Oh, I’m so sorry” face. My NYC friends will NEVER visit me (except for you, Celena). It’s a fact that New Yorkers and San Franciscans think Los Angeles is a superficial waste hole. But the truth is, there’s a lot of depth behind those shades. There’s fantastic art (I heart you, LACMA), great restaurants, awesome weather, and beaches. The first time a cashier said, “Hi, how’s your day going?” at the West Hollywood Target, I thought they wanted to rob me because in the Target in Brooklyn, NO ONE talks to you. Yes, we have terrible traffic and we whine about things like rain, but we are a fun, eclectic city who doesn’t need your approval, thank you very much.