Tale of Two Cities

The Hub

Today marks two years since I moved from Boston to LA. Here’s what I’ve discovered: Boston and Los Angeles cannot be part of the same country. One of them has to secede.

Both are weird, but in opposite ways. Here I list a few:

1. Fast Food Valet Service. Even cheap local restaurants offer valet service in LA. It’s also common practice to hand your car keys over to an attendant at a public parking lot. God help you if he’s not the real attendant. Boston’s completely different. The Four Seasons will valet, but not much else. And with good reason; denizens of Boston are so paranoid they wouldn’t let a stranger even look at their car keys from 5 feet away.

2. Dunkin Donuts. There is one on every block in the Boston metro area. Need I say more?

3. Designated Drivers. I’m not saying Bostonians drive drunk. I’m saying Bostonians stumble drunk or give directions to their cabbies drunk. I have to say, I miss this in Los Angeles, where it takes three highways and one tank of gas to get anywhere from anywhere.

4. Death Wish. Boston pedestrians are cray-zee. Don’t walk signs aren’t even a suggestion; they’re a dare. Pedestrians stare down cars like a bull in a goddamn corrida. In LA, drivers expect you to obey the lights. I had many near run-ins with convertibles before I learned my lesson and waited the extra 30 seconds.

5. Personal Space. Walk into any Boston subway station around rush hour and you may come out feeling like you had a one-night stand. People walk incredibly fast and weave between each other at stunningly narrow margins out there. They cut so close that you find yourself brushing against their skin, inhaling their body odor, or pushing someone’s backpack out of your face. Don’t get so offended, Bostonians. You know it’s true. I drew many glares and hmphs during my first few weeks in LA. It took me a while to realize why they were so upset. They preferred their one-night stands in clubs or Lamborghinis.

Got more differences to share? Offended? Post away!

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