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Old 05-13-2012, 12:47 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by majoun View Post
If you said southside of SM it would be 100% believable - and quite common back in those days - but north of Montana was movie star land back then too.
Sorry it took 18 months to respond, but this thread was just revived and I noticed your response. Many many houses north of Montana were (and I presume still are) small two-three bedroom bungalos that movie stars were NOT living in. My father bought a fixer-upper near Alta in the late 1960's while in his late 20's on minimal income, like maybe the equivalent of 50K today. Not movie star land, just a neighborhood where young people could look to buy smaller houses. I presume my neighbor who bought his house while a delivery-boy simply took advantage of a window of opportunity that has long, long, loooooooong since closed, at least in coastal CA.
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Old 05-13-2012, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Staten Island, NY
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AliveandWell View Post
Hello to all living in Los Angeles,

Recently I've seen quite a few threads about people wanting to move to L.A. and as a long term resident of this nation's 2nd largest city, I wanted to offer my opinions about what I think the truth is about L.A. and not the stuff many people hear about this city on the television or what they see based on how the movies portray it. These are going to be my opinions and I ask that all of you please respect my views even if you don't agree with them.

Okay, so the first obvious truth about L.A. is according to me:

1. The air quality is horrible. I say this because I have allergy and sinus problems. The air out here is just not fresh enough. Just go outside and take a walk and you'll see what I mean. Excluding the coast which I wouldn't even bother living in anyway, the air quality is the worst in the nation. A simple Google search will show the proof.

2. Cost of living is outrageously expensive. This one speaks for itself unless you want to rent a room in someone's house which is what I'm basically doing now.

3. Public transit is not that good here. A bus ride from Glendale to Burbank would take over an hour. Although we have a Metro system in L.A. it does not cover the entire city.

4. There is too much sunshine here. Its interesting because when I was 15, I used to love sunny days but now I've gotten to the point where I think the constant, dry sunny rainless days are a bit boring IMO. Which brings me to my next point.

5. The weather and climate is [B]not [/B]as good as most people seem to think. Especially in the summer in the inland valleys where temperatures can soar into the 100s and can stay that way for at [B]least a good 4-5 months.[/B] From about July to October and even November can see heat waves at times. IMO the best weather months in L.A. are December through April and three weeks in June with the June Gloom days. Okay L.A. is not as hot as Phoenix but summers are not the best IMO. Not enough variety in the weather in L.A. Not enough rain, no snow and too many brush fires. I know what many of you think but I am not a person that actually loves Los Angeles weather but we do have our "good" months. I put the word good in quotes because although the metro area has its nice weather days, it can't compare to San Francisco, Portland, OR or Seattle. I'm not even living here for the weather as I could care less quite frankly. Those of you that want to move here because you think the weather is so nice, think long and hard before you do it because its not what you may think. I'd rather have weather in the 50s, 60s or even 40s. I think I was born to handle cold better. Hey at least New York doesn't have earthquakes or brush fires, haha!

6. Yes, the food is great here, especially if you like Mexican or Japanese food.

7. Yes, there is a lot of cultural diversity here.

8. Yes, there is a ton of poverty in the L.A. metro with different groups not getting along with each other.

9. There's a lot to see and do but the issue is everything is so spread out here. L.A. is a city built for cars and even the streets are usually not pedestrian friendly.

10. L.A. drivers are the worst I've ever seen so far because they cut you off without using their signal lights or they can cut in front of you on the freeways. Yes this has happened too many times in my 26 years of living here. Some of these drivers also drive a bit fast.

11. People in L.A. are usually tough to maintain friendships with because they are so busy its tough to get a hold of your friends. I went to Japan for 16 days a few years back and made more friends over there in those 16 days than I would in 16 days over here.

I am not trying to say L.A. is a horrible place to live. There are things I like about L.A. but it is not as good as some think. I was just trying to point out some of the realities of living here. If I find others I will post them.
And as a New Yorker, that doesn't bother me at all.
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Old 05-13-2012, 03:54 PM
 
Location: Pasadena, CA
9,831 posts, read 7,889,083 times
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I concur with the OP. I'm not a big fan of the sun, nor am I fan of of the sunny and mild climate that plagues this city. Give me rain, and snow and freezing temperatures. Give me Chicago's winters and Phoenix's summers. Give me Portland, I love umbrellas! I need variety, but mostly I need that horrible bright orb in the sky that gives us all life and is constantly beaming down on the city of Angels...out of my face!

Signed,
Count Dracula
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Old 05-13-2012, 11:04 PM
 
Location: Earth
17,445 posts, read 24,500,531 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smdensbcs View Post
Sorry it took 18 months to respond, but this thread was just revived and I noticed your response. Many many houses north of Montana were (and I presume still are) small two-three bedroom bungalos that movie stars were NOT living in. My father bought a fixer-upper near Alta in the late 1960's while in his late 20's on minimal income, like maybe the equivalent of 50K today. Not movie star land, just a neighborhood where young people could look to buy smaller houses. I presume my neighbor who bought his house while a delivery-boy simply took advantage of a window of opportunity that has long, long, loooooooong since closed, at least in coastal CA.
In L.A., the size of a house or the type of house or apartment building it is means little, it is where it is located that means something. Houses in Beverly Hills or that area of SM differ little from those in Inglewood, but the difference is where they are located. Don't know the story of your father but I don't buy the delivery boy story unless the delivery boy was working for Dragna or Cohen etc. You'd be surprised at how much of "old white L.A." was working for organized crime in some capacity. Then again, my family came to L.A. from Chicago where people aren't in denial about the role of organized crime in the life of the city.
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Old 05-14-2012, 01:10 PM
 
812 posts, read 1,256,408 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by majoun View Post
In L.A., the size of a house or the type of house or apartment building it is means little, it is where it is located that means something. Houses in Beverly Hills or that area of SM differ little from those in Inglewood, but the difference is where they are located. Don't know the story of your father but I don't buy the delivery boy story unless the delivery boy was working for Dragna or Cohen etc. You'd be surprised at how much of "old white L.A." was working for organized crime in some capacity. Then again, my family came to L.A. from Chicago where people aren't in denial about the role of organized crime in the life of the city.
Having lived in Malibu then SM from age 0 to 26, I'm familiar with the concept of location being relevant to value. By the time my "so-called delivery-boy" neighbor told me his story about buying his house in the 1950's, he was a grizzled old curmudgeon like Clint Eastwood in Gran Torino ("Hey you punk kids get off my crabgrass!"). I will point out that when we moved into the neighborhood in 1978 (house purchased for $180K), there were between 8-12 grimy old gas stations on Montana Avenue between 7th and 26th Street, one of which was nearly across the street from our house. By 1987 (when our small lot was apparently valued at over $1 Million), there were zero gas stations left on Montana Ave. They'd all been torn down and replaced with these upscale little shopping malls full of boutiques selling women's boots for $1,800 or something absurd. Something fundamental changed in that 10 year period, obviously. Something that had been progressively changing since my grizzled bitter old neighbor claims to have bought his house back in the 1950's while a student at a community college, delivering booze for a liquor store. I have no way to prove his story. I do know my father bought a house in the late 1960's near 12th and Alta while employed as a state employee who was maybe 30. The vast gulf between what was available and at what relative cost in the late 1960's through late 1970's compared to what was available to folks coming of age after that era leads me to conclude that Mr. Gran Torino probably COULD have pulled off what he did in the 1950's. Whether he was also being financed by the mob is not something he made part of his story. I know my medium-low at the time income father was not being financed by the mob when he bought his first house in the neighborhood in 1968.

If it sounds like I'm bitter I was born too late to get me some of that absurdly low-priced (comparatively) real estate, I'm not. I'm far far FAAAARRRR better off in my Rocky Mountain West city, living in my neighborhood similar to what I remember Samo north of Montana being like before all the women's boots boutiques pushed out all the bakeries and gas stations, back when Father's Office was an actual biker bar. It was pretty dang good back in the day, before it morphed into the epicenter of upscale yuppie hell.
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Old 05-14-2012, 02:34 PM
 
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L.A. is just like San Francisco in that both places were good to live in prior to everyone showing up. In The City, it was the techie/yuppie posers who thought they were going to become the next Bill Gates. Down in L.A., it was the media posers who thought they were going to become the next Tom Cruise. I've worked all over the place, and the nicest city I've lived in was Huntington West Virginia, in that most of the people had no weird expectations of wealth or fame. They simply wanted to have a decent place to work and raise a family. In both SF/LA, the people who I met who had those similar expectations were the Latino illegals who simply wanted to survive and help their families back home do the same. A lot of the USAAmericans who have moved to both cities have brought with them their USAAmerican thought process and have driven the cost of living straight through the ceiling.....

Last edited by loloroj; 05-14-2012 at 02:46 PM..
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Old 05-14-2012, 02:43 PM
 
920 posts, read 1,566,491 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smdensbcs View Post
Having lived in Malibu then SM from age 0 to 26, I'm familiar with the concept of location being relevant to value. By the time my "so-called delivery-boy" neighbor told me his story about buying his house in the 1950's, he was a grizzled old curmudgeon like Clint Eastwood in Gran Torino ("Hey you punk kids get off my crabgrass!"). I will point out that when we moved into the neighborhood in 1978 (house purchased for $180K), there were between 8-12 grimy old gas stations on Montana Avenue between 7th and 26th Street, one of which was nearly across the street from our house. By 1987 (when our small lot was apparently valued at over $1 Million), there were zero gas stations left on Montana Ave. They'd all been torn down and replaced with these upscale little shopping malls full of boutiques selling women's boots for $1,800 or something absurd. Something fundamental changed in that 10 year period, obviously. Something that had been progressively changing since my grizzled bitter old neighbor claims to have bought his house back in the 1950's while a student at a community college, delivering booze for a liquor store. I have no way to prove his story. I do know my father bought a house in the late 1960's near 12th and Alta while employed as a state employee who was maybe 30. The vast gulf between what was available and at what relative cost in the late 1960's through late 1970's compared to what was available to folks coming of age after that era leads me to conclude that Mr. Gran Torino probably COULD have pulled off what he did in the 1950's. Whether he was also being financed by the mob is not something he made part of his story. I know my medium-low at the time income father was not being financed by the mob when he bought his first house in the neighborhood in 1968.

If it sounds like I'm bitter I was born too late to get me some of that absurdly low-priced (comparatively) real estate, I'm not. I'm far far FAAAARRRR better off in my Rocky Mountain West city, living in my neighborhood similar to what I remember Samo north of Montana being like before all the women's boots boutiques pushed out all the bakeries and gas stations, back when Father's Office was an actual biker bar. It was pretty dang good back in the day, before it morphed into the epicenter of upscale yuppie hell.

I'm from San Francisco, but my dad was from L.A., and his family had been in the area since WAY back, and I mean from the 1800's. My great granddad worked on railroads and ranches in Los Angeles proper, I mean what is now downtown.

Anyway, when I was a wee kid back in the 70's, he would take me down to visit his family in Socal, including those in Samo/Venice. What I remember of that area was that it was a retirement community, and that the beaches were mostly vacant and clean. Venice was mostly known for that weird cult Synanon, or whatever it was called. The point was that it wasn't this strange amalgam of media wannabes or wealth posers which inhabit that area. Working class families, who built things that were needed, lived in the area, not RE/studio/media peddlers, who don't have the same sentiments nor expectations.
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Earth
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Originally Posted by loloroj View Post
I'm from San Francisco, but my dad was from L.A., and his family had been in the area since WAY back, and I mean from the 1800's. My great granddad worked on railroads and ranches in Los Angeles proper, I mean what is now downtown.

Anyway, when I was a wee kid back in the 70's, he would take me down to visit his family in Socal, including those in Samo/Venice. What I remember of that area was that it was a retirement community, and that the beaches were mostly vacant and clean. Venice was mostly known for that weird cult Synanon, or whatever it was called. The point was that it wasn't this strange amalgam of media wannabes or wealth posers which inhabit that area. Working class families, who built things that were needed, lived in the area, not RE/studio/media peddlers, who don't have the same sentiments nor expectations.
An accurate description of southern Santa Monica at that time. Santa Monica was generally a pretty middle class place as a whole back then, with three exceptions:

1. North of Wilshire especially north of Montana (the area discussed). Wealthy. Large older population.

2. Pico Neighborhood. Low income mostly Latino. Still true.

3. Ocean Park. Working class white, artsy/boho types and misfits spilling over from Venice, elderly.

Culturally speaking Santa Monica (except for up north) had more in common with Culver City than Beverly Hills. It still had the aerospace company town aspect to it. I grew up in MV next door and remember all this.

However, the north was pretty different, including back then, too.
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:43 PM
 
Location: Earth
17,445 posts, read 24,500,531 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smdensbcs View Post
Whether he was also being financed by the mob is not something he made part of his story. I know my medium-low at the time income father was not being financed by the mob when he bought his first house in the neighborhood in 1968.

If it sounds like I'm bitter I was born too late to get me some of that absurdly low-priced (comparatively) real estate, I'm not. I'm far far FAAAARRRR better off in my Rocky Mountain West city, living in my neighborhood similar to what I remember Samo north of Montana being like before all the women's boots boutiques pushed out all the bakeries and gas stations, back when Father's Office was an actual biker bar. It was pretty dang good back in the day, before it morphed into the epicenter of upscale yuppie hell.
People usually don't discuss mob ties to strangers. There's a saying, if you go around telling people you're in the mob then you're obviously not in the mob. However plenty of mobsters had official jobs like "liquor store delivery boys" as covers.

I don't remember biker bars on Montana. (I DO remember them on Main and around the Pier etc.) My memories of the north side are that it was always a very affluent place and was full of movie stars especially north of Montana but it was less "in your face" about its affluence, more understated. More decidedly Midwestern WASP. I also remember a lot of Brits in SM (most parts), maybe even more back then than now.

Funny, if you were talking about the south side I'd totally agree with you. But north of Montana was not south of Ocean Park any more so then than now.

It IS true there was far less of a difference between the wealthy and the poor back then in cultural tastes, in opinions, etc. - the benefit of being middle class dominated. "Bourgeoisification" worked two ways. Even in Beverly Hills there was a Wonder Bread factory and there was a big Kelbo's-like tiki bar on Rodeo Drive.

Last edited by majoun; 05-14-2012 at 03:56 PM..
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Old 05-14-2012, 04:05 PM
 
812 posts, read 1,256,408 times
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Originally Posted by majoun View Post
My memories of the north side are that it was always a very affluent place and was full of movie stars especially north of Montana but it was less "in your face" about its affluence.
I grew up smack in the heart of it and I'm telling you it was NEVER movie stars and Kardashians. The father of my best friend in elementary school (lived half a block up from us, between Montana Ave and Alta) was a B-Movie producer, low-budget stuff, maybe got a Stockard Channing to slum into one of his movies, IF HE WAS LUCKY. Now, at this kid's bar mitzvah, there were some bigger industry folk, but those dudes NEVER lived in OUR neighborhood back then. They lived north of Sunset, Malibu Colony, Beverly Hills, up on a hill over Pacific Palisades, not in some 1100 square foot ramshackle Santa Monica bungalo, which is what 70% of houses were in that neighborhood until the 1980's. You have an image of the neighborhood that does not match up with the reality I lived. Yes, it became that, but the actual movie stars never actually MOVE into that neighborhood. Jennifer Anniston does not live on 15th and Carlyle, to my knowledge. These people live elsewhere. Now, it IS ridiculously expensive beyond all sensibility, but the $10Million houses are still elsewhere.

And the neighborhood was INFINITELY better with all the gas stations, Carl's Bakery, Sweet 16 restaurant, Miller's Market, and all the other trappings of "normal" slightly upper-middle class life. Not the inaccessable garbage it became. Trash. And I mean that in every sense of the word.
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