Monday, July 28, 2008

Who Are These People? Why Should I Care?

I am not from Los Angeles, though apparently, some people are. (who knew?) I was raised in a big southern city with a strong suburban experience. I then moved to New York City, where I finished growing up and because of that, I have a unique experience of understanding both urban and suburban environments. In New York and LA, like no other city in the States, there is an entire population of people who are out and about in the middle of the day! There they are, shopping, taking yoga, having lunch, and generally annoying me with their stupid traffic decisions. Who are they? What do they do?

Growing up, I clearly remember ditching school to go to lunch and a movie, or lunch and shopping, or shopping and a movie. Or - The Price is Right and a joint! The major upside of being out during the weekday was that no place was populated, and definitely never crowded. That was part of the reason to skip school, right? To get out of class and get away from the annoying people you see every day. The world was yours for four hours!

In LA, if you are lucky enough to get out during a weekday for lunch, or to steal some quiet time at the gym, you are decidedly not alone. At first, I thought I was unaware of some sort of national bank holiday, but slowly realized over time that it was like this every single day. I know that here in LA, many people work nights as waiters and bartenders, or doing weird data entry jobs, or are actors doing all three. But damn! Is the entire population of actors out all day, every day?! And if they are working later that evening, why the hell are they getting drunk at lunch?

Who are these people?

I only ask because lately I have a schedule that allows me a little weekday fun from time to time. For example, last week, I was lucky enough to get away to lunch with friends who were in from out of town. The whole experience was mind-blowing because I got to do the whole “go for a hike, run three errands, drive over the hill on the 405 where there was an accident, then to the 101 where there was another accident (something involving a flatbed truck carrying port-a-potty’s! ICK!) which obviously made me take surface streets the rest of the way to Studio City. Hiking, traffic, heat, headaches and lunch with friends! Another typical weekday?

And then it hit me: When did I become one of those people?

© 2008 MD TOTAL all rights reserved.


Afsheen said...

The very best time to drive in LA is around 10:30 in the morning, early in the week. Everyone with a job is already at work and "those people" -- the ones who drive from Starbucks to lunch to yoga all day long -- are still asleep.

Of course, the last time I was on the road at 10:30 AM in LA, Gwen and I were on our way to LAX, leaving our friends and fair city behind, but we'll be back soon...

NB said...

I love this entry. So true. Who ARE these people? 'Cause when I'm off work I'm not driving all over the place, that's for sure.