Pro: The Weather is Amazing
As I mentioned in my previous post, it never rains in Southern California… and who can complain? For those of us that were born and raised here, we are pretty ill-equipped for such meteorological conditions. Our wardrobes consist of tank tops, shorts, and sandals. We are forever without umbrellas; newspapers serve as an impromptu substitute on the rare occasion it does pour. All rain ever signals to us is sleeping in, hot coffee and a book, inspiration for writing (no wonder I never get any posts up!), and an excuse for not going to class.
325+ days of sunshine is wonderful. We can swim, barbeque, and hit the beach nearly any day of the year. We don’t have to worry about shoveling snow to get out of the driveway, wearing 18 layers of clothes to evade hypothermia, or tolerating unbearable humidity that makes 80 degrees feel like 145. The weather here is near paradise.
Con: We Only Have One Season
The season known as AWESOME! (Kidding.) The temperature hovers in the 70’s about ninety percent of the year, which is amazing, but starkly contrasts with other locations that have distinct weather conditions for each season. I love the fact that the weather is so comfortable, but my only complaint is that some of the holidays just don’t quite feel like the holidays without the appropriate climate.
For instance, I’d love to spend Thanksgiving when the world outside is a perfect blend of yellow, orange, and red (Hey, palm trees, show some character and change colors once in awhile, eh?). Or Christmas with a blanket of snow on everything (Fake Disneyland snow was cool the first time around…). And sweat 8 cups of perspiration while sitting in front of my computer during the blistering summer heat (Sweaty skin against leather computer chair *shivers*)…
What am I talking about? This sucks. SoCal weather’s awesome.
Pro: The Los Angeles Lakers
One of the greatest franchises in the history of sports. T’is a shame that many people who grew up in Southern California absolutely loathe the Lakers (*cough* Robert and Daniel Lorey *cough*) because the immense dedication to success and winning for the past three decades is second to none. Many fans and pundits of the game would consider the Lakers
spoiled fortunate because the marketable advantages and appeal of Los Angeles lures big stars from small market franchises, but most of the credit for success has to go to the great ownership and management of the Lakers since Jerry Buss took over.
For instance, let’s look at other big market franchises that have failed to meet similar success. The Knicks is one of the most historic franchises and play in the biggest city in the country, yet have failed to win a championship since 1973 and have been haunted for the past decade by their horrific owner (James Dolan). The Warriors also play in a big market city but have been perpetually plagued with ill-advised decisions made by its owners and management (So much so that Bill Simmons wrote 60 different ways the Warriors have tortured its fans). The Clippers play in the exact same city as the Lakers and can use its appeal to their advantage just the same, but tyrannical owner Donald Sterling turned the team into one of the most unappealing franchises in all of sports (pre-Blake Griffin
and Chris Paul heist). It is evident that great ownership and management has established a culture of winning here in Lakerland, and hopefully this standard will remain the same for many decades to come. Also, thank goodness we have the Lakers because…
Con: No Professional Football Team
Unfortunately, the city of Los Angeles lost two professional football teams in 1994: the Rams and Raiders, the former bolting for St. Louis(?!) and the latter to Oakland. Honestly, the Raiders I could do without; they only stayed in Los Angeles for 12 years and the late Al Davis was a controversial owner who caused some headaches. However, the Rams were LA’s team and have been around since 1946. Although I was still pooping in my pants by the time they left, I’m sure if they were still around today they would be the team I root for. Thanks to years of unsuccessful seasons (mostly due to poor management) and the waning presence of exhausted fans, the franchise abandoned the great city of LA for St. Louis(?!!!!) taking our name and logo with them. At least the Oklahoma City Thunder had the decency to change their name and logo when they jetted out of
Pro: We’ve Got Everything!
Southern California is one of the few places in the world where you can snowboard in the mountains, surf in the ocean, and ride ATV’s in a desert sand dune all in the same day! We’ve got the city, the beaches, entertainment, food, mansions on mountaintops, plenty of potential for celebrity sightings, and much more. Where else can you leave your office at a Fortune 500 company and within minutes (bit of an exaggeration with LA traffic) be sipping on margaritas by the beach? Oh, and a bonus: Vegas is only a few hour drive away! Score!
Con: No “Central” Downtown
Los Angeles does have a downtown area, but it pales in comparison to other major metropolises of the world. That’s because LA is vastly spread out over an area that contains many different districts: downtown, the Valley, Hollywood, Santa Monica, and many more. But that’s not such a terrible thing because each area has its very own distinct vibe and culture. However, it would be much more convenient if the districts were closer together so we could get a viable public transportation system implemented, but more on that later.
Pro: You Get to Own Your Own Car
As soon as you hit 16 and get your license you’ll probably have some sort vehicle at your disposal, whether it be stealing your parents car when they aren’t using it, getting a hand-me-down, or, if you’re fortunate enough, receiving a brand new set of wheels. Yep, everyone is traveling around town in their own personal vehicle. Just take a peek on the freeway and you’ll notice that 99% of cars on the road only have a single person in them. Carpool? Psh, pass! We each have different places to go, we can’t carpool!
However, Southern California has conditioned most us to consider anything outside of our driveway to be too far for walking distance. Anecdote: Last summer my friends and I visited New York. We checked into our hotel and decided to grub at a Shake Shack about a mile away. Sweet, My first New York subway experience! I thought. We asked the hotel employee in the lobby where the nearest subway station was for us to get to our destination. He looked at my map and said, “Oh, that’s only a mile away. You can just walk there!”
Me: “Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha… Wait, you’re serious?”
Con: Public Transportation in LA is like the WNBA. We all know it exists… but we stay away from it because it really, really sucks.
I know, I know. I knock on the WNBA all the time. But come on, they make an easy target:
(That’s not to say I’m insulting females who enjoy playing basketball. I just like to make fun of the WNBA.)
Anyway, the system implemented in Southern California is an insult to the art of transporting large bodies of the public across a metropolitan area compared to systems in other major cities across the world. I’d love to have the luxury of getting around places without having to worry about parking, finding a designated driver, and filling up my tank every couple of days (you wouldn’t believe what terrible mileage a Lamborghini gets!). And like I mentioned earlier, the broad layout of Los Angeles makes it a cumbersome task to develop a practical and efficient public transportation system. So until a feasible plan comes along, take my keys to the Mercy – I’m getting drunk.