I love LA. I lived here in 1975 for 1 year (Hawthorne, Redondo Beach and in the OC at Laguna Niguel al in 1 1/2 year) but I returned to live permanently as an Angeleno in 1981 (except for 2 years in the Bay Area). LA is not for everybody. It's a tough town. Hell, the freeways alone can drive you crazy let alone the enormity of it all and the isolation in the midst of an ocean of people.
It's a love hate relationship that one develops with this crazy megalopolis. If you know your way around you can find everything and I mean everything. But this town is both magic and diabolical and it has a dark side.
First things first;
The 1st meeting of LA Kossacks will be held on January 12th at 2PM at Casey's Irish Pub downtown. It's close to Metro stations and there is plenty of parking a block away underneath Pershing Square.Dave in Northridge, occams hatchet, equern and delphine have already confirmed. Help us get the words out and let's get more Kossacks. I mean what is there going on on Saturday January 12 at 2PM anyway?
navajo has authorized this meeting so it's official.
And we have a group that you are welcome to join to stay informed.
Below the squiggle I get to say things about Los Angeles, just because I can.
Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles del Río de Porciúncula was obviously named after the Virgin Mary back in 1781. But this city is no longer a virgin. It is probaly the largest metropolitan area in the world by the surface it covers. Greater Los Angeles has 18 million people (including those living on the other side of the Orange Curtain.) It really is not a city, rather it's the result of about 250 cities growing into each other. Dysfunctional in politics and logistics. LA City proper only has about 8 million people and it is dysfunctional all by itself. Throw in 200 plus other local governments in the huge metropolitan area and you get the idea.
Here is a different view of Los Angeles. From the air it looks great.
This strategic armoring of the city against the poor is especially obvious at street level. In his famous study of the "social life of small urban spaces," William Whyte points out that the quality of any urban environment can be measured, first of all, by whether there are convenient, comfortable places for pedestrians to sit. This maxim has been warmly taken to heart by designers of the high corporate precincts of Bunker Hill and its adjacent "urban villages." As part of the city's policy of subsidizing the white-collar residential colonization of Downtown, tens of millions of dollars of tax revenue have been invested in the creation of attractive, "soft" environments in favored areas. Planners envision a succession of opulent piazzas, fountains, public art, exotic shrubbery, and comfortable street furniture along a ten-block pedestrian corridor from Bunker Hill to South Park. Brochures sell Downtown's "livability" with idyllic representations of office workers and affluent tourists sipping cappuccino and listening to free jazz concerts in the terraced gardens of California Plaza and Grand Hope Park.Or perhaps you should get into Charles Bukowski, the great poet of Los Angeles;
In stark contrast, a few blocks away, the city is engaged in a relentless struggle to make the streets as unlivable as possible for the homeless and the poor. The persistence of thousands of street people on the fringes of Bunker Hill and the Civic Center tarnishes the image of designer living Downrown and betrays the laboriously constructed illusion of an urban "renaissance." City Hall has retaliated with its own version of low intensity warfare.
But we can talk about anything and hopefully we'll organize to do something about something one day.