Tag Archives: Los Angeles

Come on baby, put out my fire

Because Southern California hasn’t had rain in something like six months, the areas around Los Angeles are burning.  People are being evacuated, and those who refuse to leave then find themselves in need of rescue (assholes).   12,000 homes are threatened, and two firefighters have died trying to stop the blaze.

Armageddon seems to have hit.

We’re fine where we are, thanks for asking.  But the air quality is crappy.  So crappy, in fact, that I have conceded to closing the windows and using the air conditioner, a state of affairs that would please my husband if I were just willing to set it lower than 77.  You can see smoke in the distance, but you can’t see much of anything else.  Getting out of the car on Sunday, Zachary whined, “I can’t breathe.”

Given that my mother died of non-smoker’s lung cancer in her thirties, you can imagine how such a statement resonated with me.  So, the kids are staying indoors, which is going about as well as you think it is.  Every three-year-old likes to be kept inside all day.  And the baby is ever so pleased, as well.

I just don’t get why L.A. is considered some sort of paradise.  Every summer, the hills are alive with the sound of helicopters spraying flame retardant chemicals.  In the winter, the rains bring down the mountainside.  Periodically, the entire earth shakes and people start talking about “the big one.”

Not to mention the public schools with twenty-five kids to a kindergarten and many more in the older grades, fire departments in a state of “brown out,” and domestic violence shelters closing because there is no money.  For the privilege of all of this, we have an exorbitant cost of living and obscenely high taxes.

Makes a girl homesick for Philly.

And, I repeat: WTF?

By now, perhaps you have heard that Michael Jackson died.  If you have not, I would like to know what rock you have been under and whether there is any room there for me.

Los Angeles, the city that for better or worse I currently call home, is hosting a memorial service for the King of Pop today.  People have been going slightly insane trying to score tickets for this thing, which is expected to draw a hell of a lot more people than will fit into the Staples Center.  There are overflow plans and there are security plans, the second of which will be funded by the City of Los Angeles.

Now, I couldn’t give two craps and a hula hoop about Jackson when he was alive, other than to be sad at what a talented child turned into, but I’ll tell you what I do care about.  The Los Angeles Unified School District.  And the Fire Department.  And the Police Department.  And [insert here any one of numerous public services funded by my tax dollars].

Los Angeles, along with the rest of the State of California, is completely broke.  Bankrupt.  Belly-up, busted, in the red, and gone to the wall.  The city is struggling, cutting back on essential services, and raining pink slips on teachers like confetti.  And we’re paying for the fucking security at a memorial service for a singer?

Once again, Los Angeles proves it knows the cost of everything and the value of nothing.

Here’s another blogger on this topic.

Hump day

            

            Wednesdays are rough.  On Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, I have a nanny here all afternoon and evening.  On Fridays, Daddy is home for supper.  But, Wednesdays, they can be very long days.  By the time I get Benjamin down for his nap, Lilah is screaming.  Then I nurse her while Zachary entertains himself.  Often, while I sit with her, I hear him trot into the bathroom, put on his little seat, grab a toy catalog, and sit down on the porcelain throne.  Eventually, I hear too much toilet paper being ripped off, the flush, and then Zach singing “happy Birthday” twice while he washes his hands.

            By the time I eat lunch, empty the boys’ lunch boxes, and close my eyes for fifteen minutes, it’s almost time to get Benjamin up, and Zach and I have only read a few books together.  And then it’s snack time, and Lilah needs to get up so we can go to karate, where somehow I am supposed to entertain the little ones in the tiny waiting area, and then home where I try to feed her whilst the boys pull out every last toy that we own, and finally I give up turn on the Tinkerbell movie and order a pizza for dinner.

            Don’t even ask about bathtime.

            Yesterday was especially rough, as J had taken the morning off so we could meet with Benjamin’s teachers to discuss his, ahem, spiritedness.  We were late because traffic was backed up to our front door.  The 405 was running smoothly, as we could see from the surface streets where we were sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic, unable to actually access the highway.  And, then traffic was brutal getting back to our neighborhood, where we were scheduled to visit the local elementary school to decide if our little guy is ready for kindergarten next year.  And Lilah thinks her car seat is some sort of Medieval torture device, causing her to scream mercilessly in that thing, so eventually we pulled over so I could nurse her.

            Don’t even ask about traffic getting back to the preschool for the noon pickup.

            And pickup was funky because the parking lot was jammed with cars due to the Chinese New Year party the Synagogue Sisterhood was hosting.  No, I don’t know why.   And more traffic getting home, with Zachary whining about the windows and Benjamin threatening to fall asleep and Lilah screaming some more.

            Some kid had been going the wrong way on the 10 Freeway, it seems, and he had plowed into a cop on his way to work at 5 AM.  They had a spectacular crash that snarled L.A. traffic pretty much all morning.

            It also killed both men.

            When we got home, I was relieved to be out of the car and start getting Benjamin down for his nap.  But, mostly, I was relieved I was not one of those mothers or the officer’s wife.

            And then there was the small plane crash in Santa Monica yesterday that killed two people.  Plus the dude who shot his whole family earlier in the week.  It’s a damned good thing that a woman just had octuplets, because the population of Los Angeles has taken a real hit this week.