It is a garbage town filled with garbage people.

I am an Angeleno. You already know this.

But I’m the worst kind of Angeleno. The guac-chomping, locals-only, cut-me-and-I-bleed-Dodger-blue, taco-snob Angeleno. The Governator went to my church and my dad’s from Canoga Park. I feel about LA the way Leslie Knope feels about Pawnee- coincidentally, JJ’s Diner is actually in the Valley.

But I hate, hate, fucking hate Hollywood. It is the daytime Vegas of Los Angeles and the August of places. It is the place Sweeney Todd was singing about and I don’t 100% condemn his whole shtick.

Hollywood is filled with men who think rhinestone shirts are still a thing and women who misquote Marilyn Monroe and every crazy from the other 49 states who moved here to be famous but instead just wound up bitter and resentful. It’s got people who drive up and down Sunset with cars painted with casting pleas and religious zealots of every background and Scientologists and transplant-actors that complain about the city in an endless, pointless circlejerk but can’t bear to give up their dreams of basic cable stardom and go home.

Tourists are, well, tourists but I can’t be mad- they know not what they do.

But when you put it all together, Hollywood is… bleak. It’s some weird sad tableau of the human condition or mankind’s thirst for immortality by any means or if Billy Idol wasn’t Billy Idol but was instead just that guy who graduated from High School and kept hanging around anyway because he refused to grow up. It’s a fucking Greek tragedy with expensive parking and shitty people.

I hate being in Hollywood. It’s on the tail-end of “Things I would like to do” along with “drug-free childbirth” and “trying to figure out if the man behind me is following me or walking in the same direction”.

Go through puberty again.

Ask my exes why they broke up with me.

Be a bicyclist.

Watch a production of the Laramie Project performed entirely by suburban Maryland teenagers.

Watch a production of Urinetown where the lead actress has a high-pitched, vaudeville-orphan voice and is also trying to fuck my boyfriend.

Watch those blackhead-removal videos on youtube.

Fish my phone out of a Coffee Bean toilet.

Compare pant sizes with my boyfriend’s model ex-girlfriend.

Work “for exposure” at a startup with no social media presence.

Get a migraine at a Home Depot in August.

Clean the house for Thanksgiving.

Get food poisoning in a McDonald’s bathroom.

Shower in my ex-boyfriend’s bathroom that wasn’t built to code and got too steamy and had black mold growing in the corner as a result.

Try to get from Santa Monica to Westwood on a weekday at 5pm.

Use the subway alone and in shorts.

Read the Harry Potter erotic fanfiction my 6th grade best friend kept in a three-ring binder under her mattress.

Die, probably, if we’re being honest.

the second mrs. de winter wattpad.com/califiapress

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