The Pilgrimage Has Gained Momentum

img_0742-custom.JPGAs one of the dreaded East Coast transplants, I recently made my first trip back east after moving to California.  I held out for 16 months before taking a double dip to DC and Florida to see family, friends, and assorted loved ones.  I thought the trip would be about my impressions of the East Coast.  Instead, it was about the East Coasters’ impressions of my appearance. 

 “You’re skinny,” they said approvingly.  “Your hair is long,” they said somewhat less approvingly, “and what’s with the sideburns?”  Considering that Los Angeles is supposed to be the world’s capital of obsession with appearance, the East Coasters were giving L.A. a run for its money.

I then remembered that, in the Los Angeles area, and especially, the closer one gets to the beach, many of us have broad freedom regarding our appearance.  I have often noticed L.A.’s “live and let live” attitude as to people’s appearance, interests, and behavior.  I have learned that the semi-homeless looking guy walking down the street is likely to step into his Bentley and zoom off to a meeting with a hip-hop mogul at his Malibu mansion. 

So maybe the East Coasters are just envious of our freedom.  If so, I have a feeling that, like the westerly wind that comes in off the Pacific, some of this freedom will eventually blow its way to the east.


5 thoughts on “The Pilgrimage Has Gained Momentum”

  1. Years ago I went to see my family in Florida too. I’m not from there but my family was living there for a while in a part of Florida where it was better not to ask why. Anyway, I get home and the first thing my grandmother says to me is “You’re getting fat”, which may have been true but come on grandma, show a little love. Anyway, I got mad at her but she probably felt worse than I did because she died a few hours later before I could even come up with a snappy comeback.

    Anyway, the point of this is, I’m not fat.

  2. Your appearance mattered as you changed. You didn’t fit in “back east” any longer. Welcome to LA. You are one of us. Its pretty grand.

  3. You’re right; it must be the beach. Downtown LA’rs look just like downtown east coasters. But I bet your family loves you just the same!

  4. 8 Track Kid — I wonder if we’re cousins. We seem to have had the same grandmother.

    frazgo — right you are. And I don’t give that compliment every day, especially in Yoda format.

    eastcoast — I don’t agree that downtown LAers look just like downtown east coasters. Check out this article from the Wall Street Journal last year, entitled “Cracking the Dress Code in L.A., New York.”

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