Another Day In Paradise

I went out to my local stores this morning, just a short walk away from my little house, a rarity in LA.

First person I saw was a desperate homeless guy.

There are a few regulars living around here and hang out at the parking lot in our little mini-mall.

I gave him a couple of bucks and he smiled.

I wanted to chat but something in his eyes looked so pained, so embarrassed, so sad, said that he really didn't want to engage in anything other than raising enough cash to shoot across the street to the liquor store and buy enough hooch to dull everything for another day. 


So I jumped in my car and drove to Trader Joe's, in South Pasadena.

South Pasadena starts about a minute from here. 

All of a sudden the road has no potholes, the tarmac fresh, the trees full of chlorophyll, the flowers pruned and blooming.

Trader Joe's is middle class nirvana, smug and affordable, unlike Wholefoods, which is smug, overpriced, and run by a bigot.

In London, from whence I came (apples and pears, strike a light), the neighborhoods butt up together too (think of Notting Hill and Holland Park) but here there is an awareness, a willingness to help, a sense of community, that in London is viciously missing

OK, yes, we have guns here in the US, yes we have gangs, and yes we are not by any stretch perfect.

But we have compassion, not least because we all drink ourselves into a stupor at times, and are struggling like crazy to juggle everything, many of us one paycheck away from the street.

I had to get out of London because I simply could not be myself.

Take one step out of place there and some ignorant bully (always male, probably latently homosexual) will want to and try to kill you.

I know it.

Check out what happened to Mary Beard online just the other week.

It's terrifying.


So yes, I live in LA, and I love it.

I can walk out of my little house and no-one bugs me.

You want to know how great that is.