Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Things I'll miss about Los Angeles

That last post was kinda sad. I don't want to give the impression that we've just been sitting in litter feeling sorry for ourselves these last 5 years, on the contrary, we've had some wonderful times. If it weren't for our time here we wouldn't have Kali (thank you Glendale Humane Society)...
and Bella (thank you East Valley Animal Shelter)...
and probably even McKenna...
This city has a lot to offer and practically every weekend we explored someplace new. This blog captured a lot of the good stuff, and these are the things that I'll miss...
Surrounding areas – the Pacific Ocean,
The mountains, even though they're dusty.
The L.A. Craft scene – especially those involved in Felt Club, Bazaar Bizarre, Patchwork, Craftmas, Swap-o-Rama-Rama and Holiday Cheer.
Hollywood estate sales and yard sales galore. All the stuff I found and turned into kokoleos.
Thrift stores – American Way on Magnolia, Veterans Thrift Store on Sonora, Goodwill on Hollywood and Sunset, The Family Store on Lankershim, Charity Thrift on Vanowen.
Good Mexican food - Fish tacos, De La Rosas, margaritas, “wagon wheels” (what are these called?) with chile and limon.
My church – St. Michael's All Angels in Studio City. I hadn't been to church in years, but this one reminded me why it's important – because there are nice people there, with kids that my kids now call friends, doing good things for the community. And there's coffee and doughnuts too.
And last, but not least - our friends, scattered across the city.

I hope we cross paths again.

Monday, July 05, 2010

Things I won't miss about Los Angeles

One week left and then I... am... outta here. I'm ready. Our house is sold (for $180,000 less than we paid for it 4 years ago), our clutter has been purged in yard sales and onto charity trucks, the moving company has been called and the date is set (July 12th). Hopefully, God and banks willing, our new house in Seattle will be ready to move into by then. Nothing left to do but hurry up and wait. Driving around, I can't help but think of all the things I'm not gonna miss about Los Angeles. Here is the list I've compiled:

The blaring sun.

The lack of decent clouds.

The SUN SUN SUN SUN SUN symbols on t.v. weather reports.

The dusty mountains. I want them to be green.

The smog that often obscures those dusty mountains.

Helicopters. The sound, plus the wondering, Why are helicopters circling my neighborhood? With a spotlight? That can't be good.

The traffic. And the daily mini-heart attacks I have while driving in it.

The cost of living here. Gas, food, housing, utilities, taxes.

Not being able to speak Spanish (fluently) or Armenian (at all) , and therefore not being able to communicate with the parents at my kids' schools, or my neighbors, or the people that I meet when I'm walking down the street (the people that I meet each day).

The lack of sidewalks in our neighborhood.

Taggers and crappy graffiti, or worse - taggers who tag on murals and good graffiti.

Our money pit "rambler" and its maze-like layout.

One story houses.

The perky busted, botoxed, lipoed look of certain ladies carrying large coffees and wearing oversized sunglasses and tiny yoga pants.

Obnoxious *bling* - swarovski crystals and expensive labels, tinted windowed Hummers and Land Rovers and their sparkly hubcaps - they don't impress me much.

The juxtaposition of *bling* against poverty.


Sherman Way, and its miles of endless smog shops, discount furniture stores, marijuana dispensaries, water stores

(huh?), strip clubs, and adult book stores. I'm not against these places per se, but when these signs are all my kids see on their way to school, it's just sad.

Van Nuys.

The major studio executives and management that pad their salaries by eliminating artist and writer jobs, just to outsource them overseas for inferior quality. The fact that many of these artists and writers are our friends. (Read Erik's take here.)

Jay Leno. I'm with Coco.

Cutbacks, layoffs, double-digit unemployment. I suppose this is true of a lot of places right now, but seems acutely evident here when coupled with the cost of living.

Broken dreams in general. Projects abandoned before they could flourish. The fact that these are dime a dozen. The resignation that comes over time. Damn, I'm getting depressed now. I'll stop. Tomorrow I'll talk about all the things I'll miss. The upside to the blaring SUN SUN SUN SUN is that the outlook always seems bright despite the circumstances.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Happy Indie Day!

Sage loves the crafts in Family Fun magazine. (Thank you Aunt Cheryl for our first subscription years ago.) When it arrives in our mailbox, he immediately grabs it and then spends the next hour reading it cover to cover. Last Christmas I found a Family Fun book of projects and I swear he was more excited about that book than his brand new Wii. When a holiday approaches, he always gets it out and attempts one of the projects. Today, in honor of the 4th of July he turned his sister into Lady Liberty.

He even made his own flag.

Now that's a patriot!


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