I live in Venice, California.
You may see a homeless man casually juggling in front of an elaborate mural of Jim Morrison. You could run into Elijah Wood smoking a cigarette.
Last week, I bought a bag for 40 bucks next to a place that you can get a smoothie for 15. Sometimes, when I’m feeling crazy, I’ll walk down the boardwalk and immediately feel a little more adjusted and normal. Sometimes, when I’m feeling rich (rarely), I’ll walk down Abbot Kinney and immediately feel poor and under dressed.
Venice to me is both wildly over-priced and arrogant and yet on the same parallel, a place that I can exist on nothing but sunshine, miles of sand and a couple of clueless guys with larger bar tabs than brains.
(As John Wayne says, life is hard. It’s harder if you’re stupid.)
So as someone who immerses herself so fully in a place as random and glorious as Venice, California– it pains me to see sub-par journalism on a city that is anything but average. And lately, I’ve read more than one piece on, “places to go in Venice” or “my favorite Venice hot-spots” that were clearly nothing more than a shoddy version of a potentially good idea. Because all of these so called “hot-spots”? Are very often located on the same street. One restaurant has been closed for at least a month (article posted two days ago), and 2 weren’t even open at night for an article entitled, “Friday night in Venice“. What?? That is lame. That is poor work. Mostly though, it’s misleading because though I love Abbot Kinney Boulevard in Venice as much as the next Westside girl, if you think that’s the only place to go here, you are sadly misinformed and even worse than that.. you’re a pretty lazy writer. I’m looking at you Refinery29 and Daily Candy.
I’m just saying, we can all afford to be a little more in-tuned with the place we choose to live. With the city around us, whether that’s expensive 5-star restaurants or the local hole in the wall. You live where you live for a reason, so get to know the place you call home. Don’t go to the same bar every weekend. Eat the same food. Get out of your routine. Just saying.
- Get to know the city you live in. Get to know the world you live in. The other day I was reading Vanity Fair, and I read this article about a short daily email newsletter called theSkimm, which delivers the top news for the day right to your inbox first thing in the morning. The cool (and different) thing about theSkimm though, is that it reads like a conversation, so it’s not only informative, it’s engaging, interesting and actually makes me feel like I understand the news that is happening around the world. Living in Los Angeles, I feel like I get inundated with celebrity gossip, and it’s interesting no doubt, it doesn’t make me feel anymore intelligent about the world outside my little pop culture bubble. I challenge you to do the same.
- This past weekend, I ate this MOIST (sorry), creamy carrot cake in which we debated about whether 4 dollars for a delicious concoction was, or was not, something we wanted to spend. Then, we ate it in less time we took deciding if we wanted it in the first place. Also standing up huddled in a circle. It’s fine. Sometimes, you need dessert for lunch.
- And ok, obviously Justin’s new album is amazing and everything (personal favorite: pusher lover girl) but can we briefly talk about Nelly’s new little diddy, Hey Porsche? Sorry not sorry, that shit is catchy! Not in a “Hot in Herre” kind of way either. In like a jump up and down whip my hair back and forth on my bed way. Possibly guilty, once or twice.
- Has anyone else seen Michelle Obama on the cover of Vogue? Has any other first lady been on Vogue? I mean Good Housekeeping, sure. Time magazine? Obviously. But freaking Vogue man. Michelle, you’ve peaked dude. You can’t do any better than that. It’s over. You presented an award via video camera at the Oscars, you’re on Vogue, you probably have blogs out there entirely dedicated to your bangs. What’s next woman? Inventing negative calorie nutella and challenging Kate Middleton to a pull-up contest? Stop! Our heads are going to explode.
(Edit: Apparently, according to Conde Nast digital archives, this is Michelle’s SECOND cover on Vogue. Seriously.)
- And I hate to put Kate Middleton and Kim Kardasian in the same sentence but those baby simulator generator things that show what their kids are going to look like? Uh, weird. And creepy. Despite this, I kind of hope Kate’s kid has red hair. Ginger babies are the cutest nuggets ever. Yes, I refer to all babies as forms of food. Nuggets, dumplings, muffins, pumpkins.. mmm I’m hungry.
- What is with this new tapas trend? I know it’s the cool thing but I also kind of think it’s a way for restaurants to serve less food for more money. Here Meg, enjoy this plate of 4 carrots garnished with a radish stem and a slice of avocado. It’s beautiful. It’s art. It’s 25 effing dollars you ignorant fool. And maybe it’s because I’m at the time in my life where going out to eat is an expensive rarity, but when I sit down for a meal at a restaurant, I want to leave with a food baby named “FULL-FOR-THE-NEXT-TWO-HOURS”, not with stomach pains and the desire to go home and chow down on some hummus that I’m supposed to ration out for lunch the next 4 days.
— oh and for the record, if a place ever calls one of its desserts “gorgeous”? Make sure to instagram the shit out of it!… because it’s going to taste like a wax painting.
- On the same culinary trend thought– I’ve been wanting to possibly try a Juice cleanse for kicks and foodie fashion-forward giggles. That is, until I put a potential 5-day cleanse in my hypothetical shopping basket on Pressed Juicery’s website and nearly developed an ulcer. Uh I’m sorry, when did it ever become culturally ok to spend 325 dollars (PRE-TAX FOR GOD’S SAKE) on 5 days of Juice!?! What will I look like when I am done with said cleanse? Heidi Klum? I sure as hell hope so. If not after 5 days then definitely after the 5 weeks of starvation from lack of groceries because that’s how much this supposed juice made from God’s sweat glands is going to cost me. Juice-sus Christ.
- I’ve started communicating entirely through the art of text message emojis. On Valentines day, my dad texted me a bouquet of emoji flowers and I have to be honest when I say I was a little offended. Like is this what our world is coming to? Little pictures of monkeys and flower bouquets and hand gestures throwing up the peace sign? Am I going to have a future boyfriend end things with me entirely through pixel graphics? Perhaps propose? Here’s a freckle sized clip art picture of a ring Meg. Me love you long time. This is absurd people! But yet, I can’t stop. Because absurd as it is, it is massively entertaining and occasionally time-saving. Alas, I am a slave.
- I don’t understand people who never say yes to sweets. There are people at my office that every time I bring in (delicious, may I add) baked morsels, they politely decline. I’m less offended and more confused. More like: BUT WHY!? Why wouldn’t you at least try it!?!? I even feel bad for them sometimes. Kate Moss was wrong you know. That whole, “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels” quote. Kate clearly never ate Banana pudding from Magnolia Bakery. Or a Sprinkles cupcake.
Or anything I’ve baked.
- I’ve decided I’m going to stop wearing sweatpants and t-shirts that say “suck my duke” and “I wish I knew someone who had a mother F*Cking boat” to bed. Like maybe I’ll buy some matching pj sets so when I wake up, I will feel less like a sophomore computer nerd from Cal Berkeley and more like a well-adjusted adult. Do matching pajamas help with this? Will another Ikea lamp be the answer to all my problems? This is fight club people. Let’s talk about it.
As a final note, it’s a KU game day. So don’t sit in bed all afternoon with hangovers the size of Roy William’s ego, because it’s 24 hours until you have to work and a March Madness Sunday, and as Ellie Goulding and Digger Phelps would say,
Anything could happen!