Yes, nobody in Los Angeles takes transit. Every one of those people were Photoshopped in. Yeah, Uh-huh.
1. "Nobody takes transit in L.A./This is L.A., everybody drives a car." Sarcasm aside, that was an actual photo above of the Red Line at Union Station. Shouldn't it be empty or something? If nobody takes transit, then why do these people (however misguided) gripe about overcrowded buses? Yes, this is "L.A.," but even more importantly, this is the 21st century. Gas is currently around $4, and according to a recent Cars.com survey, 66% of drivers are driving less these days. Is our transit system perfect? Of course not. But it's not gonna get any better if you discourage people from taking it. The Militant supports all modes of transit, and isn't necessarily anti-car. Driving a car is meant to be fun. But it's not fun when you're stuck in traffic. So a real Militant Angeleno only drives when the conditions are present where it's less hectic.
2. "L.A. is sooooo spread out." The Militant swears that most transplants are not actually humans but robots; because they come equipped with pre-recorded voice playback systems that seemingly repeat that phrase on cue. Perhaps they come here to assimilate Angelenos into their Borg or are part of the robotic insurrection that John Connor (a native Angeleno, after all) must defeat. The large size of the region can't be argued, but why the loaded "spread out" instead of simply, "large" and "grand?" Nobody ever says the United States of America is "sooooo spread out." Nobody ever says the state of Texas is "sooooo spread out." But they are. So why does only Los Angeles get this negative distinction? Well all the Militant will have to say is that people fear the unknown and dislike what they fear. They like to point out its spreadoutedness as if it's the way Angelenos originally planned it. But in reality, it's people originally from the East Coast who designed Los Angeles the way it is.
Los Angeles started as a tiny pueblo along a river by Spanish pobladores in September 1781. For more than 100 years it remained a tiny pueblo, and even until as recently as the turn of the 20th century it was just a little 25-square mile patch centered where Downtown is today (denoted by the yellow square in the map). Who made it spread out? People like Phineas Banning from Wilmington, DE, who built a railroad from Downtown to San Pedro and created a harbor (the harbor was supposed to be much closer in Santa Monica, but Banning, in his spreadouted wisdom wanted it over 20 miles south). Or Henry Huntington from Oneonta, NY, who acquired, developed and sold land all around Southern California and built his own electric railway to connect everything together. Come to think of it, lots of people rode around in that thing back in the day, which was larger than the NYC subway system, and Southern California was waaaay less dense than it is today. Take that.
3. "L.A. will never be a bicycling city." Yes, the Militant knows what today is. But he isn't celebrating it with any special fanfare since, well nearly every day is BTWD. But seriously now, have you noticed the increased number of bikes on the road? And why are things like this and this suddenly getting attention lately? Hmmm? Even more important, Los Angeles has more or less a grid system of generally wide-enough roads, relatively flat terrain (who wants to bike in Frisco with all those hills?) and FAVORABLE WEATHER (which is the reason why most of you fools are here in the first place). Things like ignorant drivers can always be mitigated. Besides, around a hundred years ago, long before we had freeways for automobiles, they built this thing just for bicycles - the first of its kind anywhere - in what is now NELA.
4. "L.A. food sucks. You can never find a decent ______ out here!" Oh, poor you. You came "out here" to be famous/work in the industry. You came "out here" because you like the weather. But gasp! The food isn't to your liking! So the whole place sucks now! Oh the horror!
Now if that were a real whiny transy speaking to the Militant, the bitch-slapping would commence right about now. But this is only a re-enactment. Okay, so transplants come here and expect everything to be in its proper place, and in their little idyllic, myopic world, life has the best of "out here" and the best of "back home," and you never have to work hard, be concerned or worry about anything ever. Yeah. Okay. So the best pizzeria in town, despite their efforts to be authentically NY/East Coast, still does not pass muster. Well there's a scientific reason for that. Social scientists have hypothesized that food is intrinsically linked with nostalgic emotions. In Deborah Lupton's book Food, the Body and the Self, she writes:
"Commodities such as food act as "storehouses" for meaning, serving as reminders of events in one's personal past. Personal nostalgia sacralizes commonplace food items whose consumption revives memories of good times. Personal nostalgia may be defined as a kind of homesickness, a sense of loss, a rosy memory of childhood as warm and secure. It involves a bittersweet longing for home."
So there you go. A decent slice of NY pizza isn't necessarily Los Angeles' weakness, it's a mere security blankie for the thumb-sucking transplant. So in reality, it's not that Los Angeles is in need of better pizza, but that these people really just need to see a shrink.
And yes, the same gastronostalgic emotions overcome many immigrants as well. But unlike transplants, they actually get off their asses and learn how to make the damn food themselves.
5. "There's no places to eat past 10 p.m. out here." Where the f do you live? Orange County? That's just as Los Angeles as southwestern Connecticut is to NYC. Same region, not the same lifestyle. Aside from the expected, try Thai Town or Koreatown, where most establishments are open until 4 a.m. or 24 hours. And if you're too lame for ethnic food, the Militant spotted one place on Cahuenga in Hollywood opening soon (pictured right).
6. "L.A. people are self-centered, fake and superficial." If Angelenos were really that self-centered, fake and superficial, then why are there, according to volunteermatch.org, at least 2,300 (there are much more in actuality) 501(c)3 non-profit organizations in the Los Angeles area whose collective missions are to serve various issue-, geographic-, faith-, ethnic- and needs-specific communities? And to help fulfill their missions with volunteers -- you know, people who do stuff for free? Doesn't sound characteristic of a land fraught with superficiality. Maybe people who say that just need to meet people in another part of town, or learn to actually learn to actually interact with people outside of their limited social sphere (which may actually include the self-centered, fake and superficial, but is in no means representative of the populace at large). You are what you know, and if all you know are self-centered, fake and superficial people, then maybe that self-centered, fake and superficial Angeleno is looking at you right in the mirror.
7. "People from L.A. don't know how to drive in the rain." Already covered it.
8. "L.A. is a one-industry town." Um, according to this site, these are the largest industries in Los Angeles, in order of employment:
- Direct international trade
- Technology, including aerospace
- Motion picture/TV production
- Business and professional services
- Wholesale trade (excluding autos, apparel)
- Health sciences/biomedicine
9. "Everybody out here is from somewhere else." People who say that probably never read this here blog. One of the largest industries, listed above, is the health-related industry, which means we have a bunch of, you know, hospitals? And people are born in hospitals...so therefore, all these babies born in local hospitals are, you know, born in Los Angeles. Imagine that. Aside from yours truly, here's a list of other people you might have heard of who are actually from here.
10. "L.A. has no history." The Militant addresses this at length about every four posts, so no need to revisit that. But this page (select "Photo Collection" in the pulldown menu on top, and search at your heart's delight) will prove all the lackshistorytards wrong. So very wrong.
Oh there's more, and the Militant may or may not write an entire book debunking every stereotype about Los Angeles (hmmm...not a bad idea). But since the Militant's been lacking on posts lately, this'll do for now. Stay armed and stay Militant!