A Love Letter to Los Angeles
Happy birthday, Los Angeles. You turned 241 on September 4, 2022, but no one said anything. The city government wrote something for your last birthday when you turned 240, but this year it seems they just gave up. Your own government ghosted you. This makes me sad, and frankly a little mad, because I love you.
I’m sorry that no one thanked you for this strange otherworldly world you’ve given us: the shocks of hot pink bougainvillea; the buzz of hummingbirds; the strange winding steep streets where it’s terrifying to park your car; the monstrously large agave plants that tower over us; the trails above the city where you can run into coyotes (that somehow remind of me B-list f*ck bois) and rattlesnakes and the plant that you can make ricin from, if you paid attention in chemistry class or even to Breaking Bad.
No one toasted you to thank you for being able to drive up the coast and get drunk on beer and fresh fish, and then sober up by the tide pools. No thanked you for the gift of being able to fly down the freeway to your cousin’s house in Chatsworth and float in their pool during the 103 degree heat while they smoke pot and giggle. No one thanked you for being able to have horse here, (right in the city!) stabled in strange random neighborhoods. No one mentioned that you can walk along a river filled with egrets and cranes; or that a red-tailed hawk or an owl might show up on your fence one day, the first sign that you have a rat problem.
No one thanked you for the food, an abundance of riches unparalleled by any city, ever, anywhere. (Fight me, New York City). The Muslim Chinese restaurants with the their pungent lamb dishes; the other Chinese restaurants with slippery shrimp and wildly different opinions on how spicy Kung Pao should be; the dim sum; the Korean barbeque and tofu soup; the fruit stands that taught us to put spicy red pepper on watermelon; the ramen; the sushi restaurants that shame you for ordering california rolls; the diners from the 1950s and even before, still hanging on by a thread; the pastrami and corned beef sandwiches at Jewish delis that are both dying and hanging on for dear life; the oysters (yuck) that you can eat while getting drunk on a date with your endless crush; the restaurant run by a…