I will tell you right off the bat, that as a New Yorker I look at parking lots with disdain. I see the empty space and think about how we can build out housing complexes. That’s why I was so tickeled at a recent activist meeting that I attended in Los Angeles. Some individuals were really upset that there were development plans to get rid of a few parking lots in downtown and to build out mixed use spaces. They were upset and kept asking where were people supposed to park? I kept thinking who cares. If you build out public transportation you won’t need parking spaces. I find parking lots to be a blight. I find them ugly and wasted space.
Why do I mention all this? Because the way that I view parking lots is also how I view all of Los Angeles in general. I look at things with a New York lens and it makes me wonder if I will ever truly fit it. Individuals here demand parking lots. I see them as horrible. But its not only that.
I’m trying to buy a house in the Los Angeles market. I want a two-story home. I love multiple floors as it reminds me of the east coast. However, ranch houses are more popular here in Los Angeles. Many hate two-story homes. Again, my New York colored lens come into play. There are just not that many multi-story homes here. Thus, whenever I find a multi-story home here, I get super excited to only get depressed therafter. There is something wrong with every house here. Yes, I know that nothing is perfect. I don’t expect perfection. But…well, let me explain.
Here is one example of what I have been through. We found a medium-sized house in a somewhat desirable neighborhood. We went in and it was super dark. How can houses be dark in Southern California? That’s just ridiculous. Then as we walked through the house something seemed off. Way off. We reached the end of the kitchen and were told to go through this make shift door. Voila! There was another part of the house. The owner had decided to create a whole new section to the house thereby subdividing it so that he could rent out a single family home to five different people. I was horrified because the house could have been beautiful. He noted that he could knock the makeshift wall back down by end of escrow. We headed outside to discuss this house. I couldn’t believe that we were even considering it. As we were discussing its merits (or demerits), a guy pulled up in a car and asked one of the women that lives in that house whether she still had a rat problem. That was enough for me. I was already so jaded that I felt depressed for the rest of the day.
Here is the thing. If I want rat problems, I might as well go back to New York, live in a two-story (or three even) home and jump over the rats in the subway.