What do you call someone who lives in Hollywood proper?

Picture%2011.pngWord of advice: avoid AskMetafilter. The Q&A sidearm of Metafilter will leech onto your cranium and submit you to a give and take knowledge transfusion. While it takes a dollar to sign up, and you’re restricted to only being able to ask one question per week, once you’re in you’ll have no choice but to peruse other “Mefi” questions and offer your own answers, while absorbing the questionably useful answers other provide.

For our purposes, though, I’ll stick to the one Astro Zombie asked last week:

What do you call someone who hails from Hollywood. Hollywoodan? Hollywoodite? Nothing sounds right, and I can’t seem to find any reference online. If they don’t already have a name, help me make one up.

Answers so far range from the practical (“Hollywoodsman,” “Hollywoodlian,” “Hollowoodies”), to the snarky (“waitstaff”). Honestly, after living in Hollywood for nearly five years, as proud as I am to be a resident I’ve never thought past calling myself an Angeleno.

One reply, though, which only adds to AskMetafilters addictiveness, goes on a small tangent referencing the above image:

I had never before realized how much the eastern border of Hollywood looks like Pee Wee Herman.

CategoriesUncategorized

32 Replies to “What do you call someone who lives in Hollywood proper?”

  1. Only a non LA person would feel compelled to come up with a name for someone who lives in Hollywood. In particular I would think that is a very New Yorky thing to do, sort of like the term Angeleno. That term didn’t come into vogue until certain parts of the city became overrun by New York people. And the idea of not having a label for some reason bothers those people.

    New York is a place where people have to know exactly what you are and where you are from and they’ll be pretty in your face about it.

    “So what the fudge are you exactly and what street are you from?” rude New Yorker.

    So to keep with Los Angeles roots, I think we should refuse to come up with a proper definition for people who live in Hollywood proper. In LA the line of what is and is not a neighborhood changes yearly, no I guess monthly now owing to the internet.

    Browne

  2. That term didn’t come into vogue until certain parts of the city became overrun by New York people

    And that would have been… when? About 1887 or so?

    :-)

    Seriously, they’re a constant influx. Some of ’em stick around, but some of them just miss their subways too much.

    (Hmmm. I’ll have to remember to add that to my Thanksgiving “Things I’m Thankful For” list: “Most of the New Yorkers don’t stay.”)

  3. That term [“Angeleno”] didn’t come into vogue until certain parts of the city became overrun by New York people

    And that would have been… when? About 1887 or so?

    You know, I wrote that as a joke, but after I wrote it, my history-sense started tingling, and I started thinking about Angelino Heights, the neighborhood full of old Victorian houses near Echo Park.

    And, sure enough, it’s a product of the great 1880s land boom, when railroad fare wars dropped ticket prices to LA to as low as $1.00, resulting in a huge influx of immigrants.

    From Wikipedia:

    Originally spelled Angeleno Heights, Angelino Heights is second only to Bunker Hill as the oldest district in Los Angeles. Founded in 1886, it was originally connected to the downtown mainline (which ran east to west on Temple Street) by a small spur line of the cable car and later, electric streetcar.

    So I guess maybe I wasn’t far off. :-)

    That land boom, with its thousands of immigrants, was probably the first time LA was overrun by New Yorkers. (And probably won’t be the last!)

    And, sure enough, there’s that name, “Angeleno”.

    So maybe you’re right. It’s the New Yorkers!

  4. Come now anyone raised in LA in the (at least if you were a kid in the eighties) never, ever used the term Angeleno. We can’t even agree how to spell it. Half of “Angelenos” don’t even know how to spell it which to me is proof that it’s not that common.

    I dare you to find the term Angeleno with any common frequency in the LA Times between the dates of 1970-1997. Hey look in the LA Weekly prior to 1997, prior to the Village Voice stealing it (a New York paper which adds to my conspiracy theory) no one used the term Angeleno to describe people in LA.

    Is it Angelino or Angeleno? The fact that is a question points to it’s not that old.

    New Yorkers all agree New Yorker is spelled the way it’s spelled.

    The late 1990s is when I first started hearing Angeleno.

    Anyone arguing this point while I’m happy that you’re here, I doubt you were in LA as a kid if you’re in the 30-45 year old range.

    Browne

  5. Also another reason I don’t like the term Angeleno is because eastcoasters use it as a sort of sneaky way to talk bad about Los Angeles. It almost sound like a slur when someone from Brooklyn says it.

    Listen to how an eastcoaster says Angeleno, it doesn’t sound like a thing I would want to be.

    People in Hollywood don’t need a label. Nothing need a label. Nothing needs a particular home. The only thing labels are for is to make it easier for people to advertise and sell you crap.

    “This demographic likes this and this demographic likes that,” yes it’s all fun and games until you see what you are on a billboard and you feel an urge to eat a greasy hand burger and get breast implants and watch TV all day long and you don’t know why.

    Then two years later you’re 50 pounds overweight, you’re partner has left you and all because you answered some poll on blogging LA and you gave the ad companies the key to who you are:

    A Hole

    Browne

  6. Anyone arguing this point while I’m happy that you’re here, I doubt you were in LA as a kid if you’re in the 30-45 year old range.

    I’ve been here since the late ’70s. And I’m not in the 30-45 year old range.

    But I’m not arguing about anything, just nattering on about history as I occasionally do.

    The word “Angeleno” does appear fairly often in newspapers and other periodicals from around the the turn of the century through at least the ’20s. (I say “at least” simply because I’m less familiar with periodicals of the ’30s and later).

    Perhaps it fell out of fashion later, and then was recently revived. Beats me.

    As for the spelling, it was almost always spelled “Angeleno” in those cases – the “-ino” of “Angelino Heights” is a rather unusual variation, and not the original spelling.

    I don’t mind labels – I think they’re a nice alternative to having to point and grunt.

    And I don’t really care how an “eastcoaster” (or however we say “someone from the east coast” without labelling them) says it.

    Though I suppose if I find myself with a sudden urge to get breast implants, at least I’ll know why. :-)

  7. “I don’t mind labels – I think they’re a nice alternative to having to point and grunt.” Thanks for the laugh LA MAPNERD, all good points in what has been a very interesting string of comments.

  8. I’m in the 30-45 range (closer to 30 though, heh). I was born in Los Angeles (in the actual city, not the burbs). I really don’t see what the big deal regarding “Angeleno” is. I’ve heard that term all my life. I am an Angeleno. What’s the problem with that?

    And if NewYoakers use “Angeleno” condescendingly, well fuck ’em! That’s just absolute proof that they’re the ones with the ‘tudes!

  9. Good work Mapnerd, I always thought Angelino Hts. sounded odd.

    I agree with Browne, you probably don’t need to define a person by their neighborhood, I don’t know of any EastLAers, Highland Parkeros, or Century Cityzens. (Though I have used Lincoln Heightsian to refer to my neighbors!) But if you don’t like Angeleno, what term would you use instead? Assuming you are having a conversation in a distant city, talking about the people that live in LA, and want to avoid repeating “the people that live in LA.”

  10. I have a problem convincing people I live in Hollywood proper, not West Hollywood. Yes Hollywood actually exists.

  11. “if you don’t like Angeleno, what term would you use instead” El Chavo

    I talk very fast, so I just say “in LA we do blah, blah,” but you know when I got to other places I never say I’m from LA. I always say I’m Canadian, because it seems to make people treat you nicer.

    Technically I am from Canada, but I guess that is sort of lying since I was raised mainly in LA.

    The only place I’ve been for an extended amount of time other than LA has been Hong Kong and if I used the term Angeleno they’d have no idea what I was talking about, so I say “in LA we do…”

    I don’t know what I’d use as a substitute. I don’t hate the Angeleno term I just want people to admit that it was not used widely before the late 90s, because I’m slightly petty.

    I want some proof that in 1988 that Angeleno was something people said.

    I challenge any of you who think that was a common term to find a book or newspaper (that took place in LA, written by someone in LA) that used the term Angeleno before 1997.

    I will give you twenty dollars.

    I have another theory. The term Santa Ana winds, though it existed it was not widely used until Kelly used it in the show 90210. I swear to god no one outside of science ever used that phrase (who wasn’t a newscaster) prior to Kelly saying it on 90210.

    I’d bet my life on those two statements.

    Browne

  12. Browne, the term Santa Ana winds was used by Raymond Chandler way back in the 1940’s. My father-in-law used the term as well when I met him for the first time in 1988 and he was born here. Don’t kill yourself on my account, really you are to entertaining.

  13. I challenge any of you who think that was a common term to find a book or newspaper (that took place in LA, written by someone in LA) that used the term Angeleno before 1997.

    I want some proof that in 1988 that Angeleno was something people said.

    Randomly selected LA Times headlines:

    Former Angeleno Favors More U.S. Budget Cuts
    –Apr 21, 1957; p.B1

    ENDURANCE RECORD SET AND ANGELENO SOARS ON
    –Jul 10, 1929; p.1

    Angeleno Boos New York Stage
    –Jun 30, 1961; p.B7

    Angeleno Named State Nixon Leader
    –May 18, 1960; p.2

    Angeleno Who Landed in Japan Describes Ruin
    –Aug 27, 1945; p.1

    ANGELENO VICTOR IN GOLF PLAY
    –Aug 18, 1927; p.B1

    Angeleno’s Death Hikes Korean Crash Toll to 16
    –Nov 24, 1980; p.B17

    A newborn Angeleno in thrall to his Mercedes-Benz
    –May 14, 1978; p.M1

    Analysis: Gehry’s Disney Hall Design `Quintessentially Angeleno’
    –Dec 13, 1988; p.1

    I could keep this up for hours – the Times archive search finds 58 uses of “Angeleno” in 1988 alone.

    Before 1997? Over 16,000 hits between 1881 and 1996.

    As for the Santa Ana winds, BZZZZZZT! Sorry, but thanks for playing! :-)

    After all, Joan Didion’s essay, “The Santa Ana” – the one everyone quotes when they’re not quoting Chandler – was first published in the Saturday Evening Post in 1965, and then (incorporated in “Los Angeles Notebook”) in her collection Slouching Toward Bethlehem in 1968.

    It didn’t use the word “Angeleno”, though. :-)

  14. Personal anecdotes don’t count, though I guess I’m giving one, but I’m also made the challenge and will pay out on the bet, so I’m allowed to set up the terms ;)

    Also in regards to the term Angeleno if you guys want to all pretend like that was a common term in the 1980s then fine, but I know the truth.

    I know that in California you didn’t need to be a citizen to get a drivers license before Pete Wilson made it a law in the early 90s, but now people debate it as if having a license always went hand in hand and it didn’t.

    I also know the Under God part of the Pledge of Allegiance only got added to be spiteful to the Jewish lawyers who were defending people during the Civil Rights movement in the 1950s.

    Now yeah tell me where to mail your twenty dollars LA Mapnerd, but I did kind of say in prior post that between 1970-1997, I was born in 1978. Also those dates are kind of spread out, doesn’t point to common usage. A couple of days with the word referenced over a dozen times, yeah that would but what you show me here is a very wide range of dates, but I didn’t specifify so again…I was kind of referring to my generation, but I’m not going to renege.

    Before maybe the term was used, but suburban kids who were middle class, who listened to MTV who lived in suburbia did not use the term to describe themselves or each other.

    Los Feliz to me is and was suburbia, it pretends to be urban, but I know the truth about where I grew up.

    And anyone from LA of a middle class background at the tail end of generation X though the beginning of generation X knows deep down in their heart that Angeleno is a not a term that the LA kids of their youth used.

    Maybe old people used, but no one as a ten year old from LA went to visit their cousins in New York in 1989 and said “I’m an Angeleno.” That never, ever happened.

    I don’t care how much people try to remake history via online. It never happened at least not in my world.

    But I can see by the headlines LAmap Nerd is not that common. I mean New Yorkers gets referenced everyday in the New York Times. In the LA Times can you find in the year 1988 that it was referenced more than once per issue? I’m not reneging, I’m just asking.

    You’ll get your twenty dollars, but I have another bet for you LA MAP nerd. Triple or nothing.

    If you can find me where the LA Times used the term Angeleno once a day within a week period (which to me with point to common usage) in 1988 I’ll send you 60 dollars.

    I mean if you look in the LA Times today via online the term was last referenced on 11/15, kind of points to in my world not that common of usage.

    I know that fancy door jammer adwell masquerading as a magazine Angeleno wasn’t started by someone from LA.

    __________

    Also I didn’t say Santa Ana winds was not used by people of academia, I said people who were just regular people who watched sports on the weekends and MTV didn’t use that term until after it was stated on 90210.

    It wasn’t a phrase used in common everyday speech, now it is.

    A grandma who watches the stories might use the term Santa Ana winds and that wasn’t happened before the 1990s, of course people still don’t know exactly what it means, but they use it like they do.

    Browne

  15. Does it matter if it was a common term in the 70s, 80s or not? It may possibly have gone OUT of style for a while, but guess what: Its back!

    I use it frequently mainly because I like it, but also because I write about Los Angeles all the freakin’ time, and writing “citizens” or “residents” gets a bit boring.

    I’m guessing Astro Zombie wanted to know what he could call Hollywood residents because he, too, is a writer, and may have been looking for a title for a new column, blog, or article about the area.

  16. Does it matter if it was a common term in the 70s, 80s or not? It may possibly have gone OUT of style for a while, but guess what: Its back!

    Ah, topic drift, the plague of cyberspace!

    Maybe Hollywood residents could be called “Hollywoodsters”?

    No, wait! I know! Call ’em “Hollywoodies”, and then shorten that to “‘woodies” for everyday use.

    Whaddaya think? :-)

  17. Oh, and @Browne:

    If what you really meant was:

    “‘Angeleno’ wasn’t very commonly used by the teenage MTV listeners born around the same time I was in 1978 that I happened to know while growing up in middle-class suburban LA in the ’80s”

    …well, then, sure, no problem. :-)

    I moved to LA in 1978, myself, but I didn’t really know all that many suburban teen MTV fans in the ’80s.

    (Well, there was one who slept on my sofa occasionally, but I can’t say I remember if he ever used “Angeleno” in a sentence or not.)

    But, whether you noticed it or not, quite a few other Angelenos have used “Angeleno” since long before you were born, pretty much continuously up to the present day. :-)

    As for the bet, the next time someone on the down-and-out asks you for money to buy food, give ’em the $20, okay?

  18. Okay, I laughed at the person who said that no one used the term ‘Angeleno’ before ’97. We moved to LA in ’81 and Angeleno was even used in Kansas City back then. I know that it was used in the 50s because I have a newspaper from ’54 that uses the term.

    ANYWAY…being a recently former denizen of Hollywood after living there for 8 years, I feel more than comfortable in saying that people who live in Hollywood are A$$holians.

  19. So is LA MAPNERD saying that the better part of Browne ran down her mothers leg? Interesting thread none the less.

    I got the biggest chuckle out of fabooj’s comment.

  20. Maybe old people used, but no one as a ten year old from LA went to visit their cousins in New York in 1989 and said “I’m an Angeleno.” That never, ever happened.

    Uh, that’s a poor argument right there. Does ANY child have a sense of urban identity? Puh-lease! A kid’s world is largely limited to their home, their school and maybe the local park (if they got one). Likewise, a 10-yeard old New Yorker isn’t going to tell their Angeleno cousins that they’re a “New Yorker! That has never, ever happened either!

  21. Fraz: Not to speak for MapNerd, but I don’t think by any means was he trying to bring this to down to personal attacks, which would be especially unnecessary on a benign topic such a this.

    Elson: I agree with your point, but I do not that kids even younger than ten, because of their parents, will identify kids from other neighborhoods with a broad paint stroke… that some kids are spoiled cause they’re from a richer neighborhood, or may be rotten because they come from the wrong side of the tracks. Slightly off topic, but I think those perceptions are the roots of more problems than most may admit.

    Anyway, I could proudly call myself a Woodie… as long as noone confused me with being from Westwood. Yech!

  22. I think the best way is to find out from the kids themselves, rather than resorting to conjecture.
    The closest thing kids get to developing an urban identity is what city they write on their return address when they mail a letter. I didn’t develop an urban identity until after high school – I hadn’t really met a transplant until after HS! Whenever they would talk about how “L.A. is so spread out” they all seemed real weird to me, especially since they were all so obsessed by it. Now I learned it’s really culture shock and it’s part of their defense mechanism in terms of dealing with it. Everyone I knew in my life until that point was either a native or an immigrant.
    But back to the original topic, I’ve heard the Angeleno term since I was a kid, but as a Hollywood native born 36 years ago tonight at Kaiser Hospital on Sunset Blvd, I’ve never heard of any term designating someone from Hollywood – but then again neither have I heard any term for any other neighborhood in this city. (“Silver Lakers?” Is that some senior citizen basketball league team? LOL)

  23. But back to the original topic, I’ve heard the Angeleno term…

    Actually, the original topic was what should Hollywood residents call themselves, not whether or not 14 year olds referred to themselves as Angelenos between noon and 2pm on September 23rd, 1985. But I digress…

Comments are closed.