Ask Ty...June 26

Q: As a child in Pennsylvania, I spent what in retrospect seems like an inordinate amount of time in olde timey colonial places where people dressed up in hats and bonnets and buckles and wire rim glasses and made candles and spun yarn and told us how people used to sleep on hay and poop outside. And I'm not even talking the big places like Williamsburg, VA or Plymouth, MA. I'm talking your neighborhood variety colonial throwback like Valley Forge, or Lahaska, or Rittenhouse Square, or Hopewell Furnace, or Ben Franklin's home, or George Washington slept here or whatever. There are pictures of me on more than one occasion wearing tri-corner hats eating sugar plums and comfits with my head and wrists stuck in a pillory imagining townsfolk throwing rotten fruit at me.

Did you have such things in Los Angeles?

Ty: Good question and an even better observation, Are Dub. Ahh, Los Angeles! LA. The City of Angels. La-La Land. My home. I was born in Los Angeles. Actually within the city limits itself. General Hospital. I possess the cred to fly the distinctive 213 tattoo. Crips and Bloods. Rams, Lakers, Dodgers, and Raiders. Hollywood. LAX. USC. UCLA. Average high temperature? 73°F. Average low? 55°F. Fourteen inches of rain per year. Never colder than 28°F, ever! We made all the TeeVee and all the movies and shit.

El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles de Porciúncula

Los Angeles of my youth spans the Watts Riots of 1965 (my birth year) and the Rodney King Riots of 1992; the the Sylmar earthquake of 1971 (Richter 6.6) and the Northridge earthquake of 1994 (Richter 6.7). Sure I technically left Los Angeles in 1973 but it will always remain in my heart. I may be Californian but I am Los Angeles. Did I mention that I was born in LA?

Ha! You had "Hear Ye! Hear Ye!" and all that shit, huh? For real? All the time? Ha! William Penn and John Dickinson and stuff, huh? Ben Franklin? That's soooo gay! Not homosexual gay but, lame as hell, dude (we had the homosexuals). Here's the total I knew about Pennsylvania until I was like in high school American history:
  • Eagles
  • Sixers
  • Steelers
  • Coal
  • Liberty Bell (cracked)
  • Phillies
  • Pirates (bad hat period)
  • And this riddle: What's the biggest pencil in the world? Pencil-vania
I grew up with:
  • CBS
  • ABC
  • NBC
  • Smog like hell
  • Olympics
  • Sam Yorty
  • Daryl Gates
  • Tom Bradley
  • Drive-bys
  • Disney
  • Beaches
  • Halter tops
  • Boobs
  • Hollywood (prostitutes, runaways, drugs)
Growing up, I always believed those feel-good Christmas movies with snow and white people happy about everything was a complete fantasy. White picket fences? What the hell?! Snow was something you drove to like the beach. Snow was up in the mountains. Pilgrims? Another story. Santa? Has to come down a chimney, huh? We don't have a chimney because it didn't get cold. Another story. That's why I never believed that stuff. I always felt the "story" (lie) about Santa to be a bad thing for kids because it just showed that adults lied.
"I don't know - Santa might be a good thing for little kids. First, it gives them a sense of magic and excitement they'll never have again when older, plus, it's a certain right of passage figuring out the truth. And, because they learn that things aren't always as they seem, it might teach them to question reality in the future."

- Big Dave Wave
Question this reality, bitch! Ain't no damn Santas!

Anyway, your question, RW: Did you have such things in Los Angeles?

While we didn't have public stocks, we had Mexicans (pronounced: "MESS-kins") who did mariachi with the big hats with the dingle balls and the big guitars. We had taco trucks. Chinatown was a novelty with all the headless ducks hanging in the windows. We took a bus to that. We went to the Farmer's Market. We invented gangster rap and glam. Sugar Plums was a ballet.

Here's what we had in Los Angeles: Earthquakes, fires, landslides, shootings, riots, and Mexicans. Repeat.

213, represent!

Just a guess,