"Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of. but do it in private
and wash your hands afterwards." --Robert Heinlein.

We've moved!

For the next two years (Summer 2014-Summer 2016) I'll be blogging our family's adventures in China at www.chinesemileposts.wordpress.com

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Los Angeles

There are a lot of Californians that attend BYU. Plus one of the first questions you are asked by anyone new you meet in life is "Where are you from?" Unless you are in St. Louis where my father-in-law and brother-in-law claim that the only thing people care about you is what high school you went to. Weird.

So I was asked where I was from a lot at BYU. What I said varied over the years and depended on who was asking and what kind of mood I was in. This was the range of answers I'd give:


Southern California (because you would undoubtedly be asked which part since everyone either knew someone from California, or was from California themselves).

About three hours north of San Diego/Mexico (because as soon as I said Southern California, people would assume San Diego or Orange County).

Ventura County.

About an hour north of L.A.

Los Angeles area.




Sometimes I would start with Somis, which is a town that barely makes the map. Every once in awhile I'd just say L.A. because everyone knew where that was and I wouldn't have to explain. Maybe with every place I said people formed an opinion of me and who I was and where I'd grown up that was far from accurate. But I think the "L.A." answer threw people the furthest from the truth. They assumed I'd grown up in the L.A. they saw on the news. That I was a tough girl from a big city. I guess L.A. as my hometown doesn't accurately describe that the county I actually grew up in is highly agriculturally dependent. That my childhood home is on a 2 acre lot filled with avocado trees and other fruits. That in order to get to "town" (ie: Camarillo or Moorpark) I have to drive on a two lane state highway past hundreds of citrus trees, green pepper fields, onion fields, rows and rows of berries, and a handful of fruit stands, just to drive the few miles to "town." I'm kind of liking that I don't run into as many Californians in Kansas, or people who know Californians, because I can say that I'm from California, and that's enough.


Cristin Lassen said...

On my mission (to France and Switzerland) I would say I was from "near Disneyland" or "close to Hollywood." These are seriously places that would get the french really excited.

Jamie said...

I don't know what the overall hostility against Californians is all about. Seems like everywhere I go I meet people who want to exterminate all Californians. I'm sure it's because I one point they met someone that was completely obnoxious or something. Or maybe it's the fact that Californians move away from California and build bigger homes and cause the local economy to escalate? I have a friend who's husband is constantly saying horrible things about Californians and they always forget that that's where I'm from and the stuff he says is really outrageous and I say, "You do remember that I'm from there, right?" And then there's the forgetful look on their faces and the saying of things like, "Well, you're not from Southern California, or you're not like other Californians." Anything north of Los Angeles is northern California. This same person's husband will not go out to eat at California Pizza Kitchen because it has the name California in it. Looney! I'm not going to eat a potato because I hate people from Idaho. People are people wherever you go. As you can probably tell I've been feeling a little defensive. Maybe because I'm homesick and I live somewhere that isn't "home", but there are things to love about this place and anywhere else that people live. Ranting finished.

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