November 08, 2002

Southern California -- 'Fuc...

Southern California -- 'Fucked-up Precious': At the risk of being immodest, I wanted to share this chunk of a really nice e-mail I received tonight, because of the gorgeous way it describes Los Angeles:

At any rate, your site is a joy. Most folks where I have lived (Northern Ctin, Texas) have always deferred to northern California as the cultural half of the state, but I thought that was crunchy, sloppy thinking. Southern California is fucked-up precious, just like the best of this brilliant country. Your accounts make it vivid and beautiful in my landlocked imagination.
That's the best three-word description of the Southland I've read in a year. And it's the kind of praise that makes me want to deserve it. Posting will become more vigorous starting Friday.

Posted by at November 8, 2002 02:02 AM

That is a rather unusual complement. Dude.

Posted by: Tim Stich at November 8, 2002 07:38 AM

I have to agree. I actually lived in SF for three years and never made it down to the southern half of the state except for one weekend trip to SD and a swing through Santa Barbara as I was leaving the state. Matt's impressions of Southern California (as well as Layne's and Pierce's, but mostly Matt's) have given me the impression that maybe, just maybe, I missed out on the best part of the state while I was living there. Now that I have a brother living in Huntinton Beach, I'm dying to go and explore this strange land. Fucked-up precio="bakecookie" />

g the sophisticated superior to "vacuous" Southern California. These prejudices are based on nothing more than misconceptions about culture filtered and distorted by pop culture representations. There's a lot more to us than Mickey Mouse and "Baywatch".

Posted by: Emily at November 8, 2002 11:23 AM

I should hasten to add that I adore San Francisco, and always will. These days it seems like the Bay Area is the one on the butt-end of prejudices as much or more than la-la land.

Posted by: Matt Welch at November 8, 2002 12:22 PM

I am a land-locked Kentuckian, (You don't count the Ohio river, right?) and my all-too-short visit to Los Angeles was magical. Sunshine. Beautiful women. Gigantic mountains. Illegally smoke-filled bars and a fantastically exciting and complicated highway system.

On dreary, drizzling cold days in Louisville it lifts my spirits to scan Welch, Layne and Pierce for the latest tales of SoCal Sunshine.

(And where is Layne these days? I ordered one of his remaining stock of books the other day and haven't heard back yet!)

Posted by: Jackson Cooper at November 8, 2002 01:43 PM

>> All of those attempts to split the state have come from Northerners who have pretentions about being the sophisticated superior to "vacuous" Southern California.

There are two groups of Northern Californians who would like to split CA.

One group, the San Franciscans, think that the rest of the state loves them so they'd be kings if they could just get rid of the population centers south of the grapevine.

The other group, the valley and mountain folk, want to split away from the coast; they don't want any part of the SF Bay area or points south of the grapevine.

The latter group actually made a serious run at splitting the state in the early 40s. However, their kickoff day got pushed off the news cycle by an air raid on a US territory.

Posted by: Andy Freeman at November 8, 2002 10:43 PM
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