Getting Out Of #TheBubble Is Such A Challenge
My apologies to my good friend Chris for missing his birthday celebration, and to his lovely wife Melissa for inviting me to it.
But I could just not stand the thought of driving in L.A. traffic on a Friday afternoon. It would have taken close to two hours to get to the restaurant they were at in Pasadena from here in Hermosa Beach.
And this, folks, is the problem with Los Angeles. There’s a lot to do and see in this city, but unfortunately you can’t get to anything. It’s a combination of the distances, the traffic and the lack of good public transportation.
No LA Metro For The South Bay
It’s that last part that gnaws at me the most. I’ve already chronicled the hair-pulling agony of trying to get to Union Station on LA Metro, so taking it to Pasadena was not an option. It was a dream, but not an option.
Oddly, on this same day, LA Metro was pumping its chest with the opening of the Expo Line expansion to Santa Monica. But, of course, there’s no way to get from the South Bay to Santa Monica and if there was (which there should be, by the way), it’s still another trek to Pasadena.
More appropriately, that same day the LA Times ran a column on two men who walked 22 miles to Dodger Stadium to avoid traffic. That’s actually not a bad idea in this city (they stopped at a couple of bars along the way, too!).
I went through various driving routes in my head on how to get there – even stopping in North Hollywood to pick up a friend who lives there – but none of them were good: the 405 freeway to the 10 to the 110? Forget it. The 110 freeway through downtown L.A. HA! Crawling through surface streets? Not a chance.
Not only that, but I talked to a couple of friends who has just escaped from L.A. traffic and they told me traffic was a mess. One even went so far as to say, “you’ll regret it.”
I felt guilty because I wanted to be there but Chris and Melissa would probably have been more shocked than pleased to see me because they know the distance and time involved in getting anywhere here makes not showing up as commonplace as sunshine.
I was actually willing to get out of “The South Bay Bubble” to do it, but instead I tried to find an excuse to stay in this area.
I texed a few friends to see if they had anything going on (none did), circled the Redondo Beach classic car show several times waiting for someone to win my raffle prize I donate for Beach Cities Bike Tours (didn’t happen), and I checked my e-mails and all my social media platforms to see if there was some local type of activity that required PubClub.com’s attention (there wasn’t, of course).
So eventually I did what people in “the bubble” do when we have nothing to do – I got on the bike, went up and down The Strand and circled the bars time and time again on Pier Plaza until I ran into a friend or got a message from someone saying to meet them out at a bar.
Eventually that happened and not even $3 ice-cold Kona Longboard beers on extended Friday Happy Hour at American Junkie (until 9 o’clock!) and running into a Flip Cup game at The Deck could ease my guilt of not going to Pasadena.
But I live in L.A., and I had that well-worn excuse: traffic.
Maybe I should have walked.
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