It's been some time since I've lived in Los Angeles, and I'm happy to have moved back last month.
Here are a few ways it's changed.
It's more politically correct
It used to be that California was a bifurcated state. The North was where the hippies lived in politically correctness. The South was where the heathens lived in political incorrectness. Now LA is more politically correct. The recycling. The bag policing. The Priuses. Still, there's a layer of muck below the surface. Thick black tar, underneath it all. It's PC as performance.
It's more crowded
In LA proper, the streets are glutted with traffic. Nobody can agree upon the driving rules. The drivers are more aggressive. It takes forever to get anywhere. After dark, the freeways are red and white glowing streams of people trying to get somewhere, anywhere but where they are.
It's more expensive
In Los Feliz, the one bedroom apartment that I used to rent for $725 a month is now $1,850 a month. $2,000 a month gets you a dump near a busy street and maybe no refrigerator. Hollywood, the Valley, and the areas east are a bit more affordable. This is New York City, without the brownstones.
The food is better
Poke bowls. Handmade mozzarella. Fried Thai ice cream. Pop up restaurants. Food trucks. Fine dining with a side order of attitude. It's all there. And it's fucking delicious. Every bite of it.
There's a lot of art
The sculptures made of dead bodies. Whatever the hipsters are doing these days in Echo Park. Those loaded Broads. It ain't the Met, but I'll take it. Because the palm trees are Rodins, and the faces of the ladies on Rodeo Drive are Cindy Shermans, and the Hollywood sign is a Barbara Kruger.