Holidays in la la Land
Driving down the barren streets and empty alleyways the other day made me reflect on how different LA traffic is on a holiday. No, dear readers, it was not New Year’s, Thanksgiving, or Christmas I’m talking about.
It was Halloween.
Because in Los Angeles, there is no bigger holiday than Halloween. Except, arguably, the Oscars. Both constitute perfect La-La Land holidays – they aren’t religious, they center around dressing up and getting treats/prizes, and each has an unmistakable air of competition.
As in, (for Halloween), “who can dress the sexiest?” if you’re a girl, or “who can dress the spookiest?” if you’re a boy!
People don’t really live in ‘neighborhoods’ in LA like they do in the rest of the country, so trick-or-treating doesn’t occur on the same scale. Some kids get driven into wealthy, candy-laden blocks to score big; others just go to Halloween parties and get wasted. We (the royal ‘we’) are hoping the partying kids are over 18, but we also seriously doubt they are.
As for the Academy awards, the competition amongst the contestants is obvious enough, but what non-Los Angelinos might not understand is that it’s also a day of lay-person competition – in other words, who can guess the most winners right & win your office/Oscar party pool? Who can spot the most disappointed loser in the audience? And what do we all make of Jennifer Anniston’s reaction to Angelina Jolie’s big win? (That may not technically count as a competition but it still holds our rapt attention.)
And yet for both Halloween and the Oscars, there is NO competition on the roadways those days, because most Angelinos are home early getting dressed, putting on makeup, and otherwise getting ready for one of the best parties of the year.
Ahem – before you non-Angelinos roll your eyes at our ‘worshipping at the altar of Oscar & the Great Pumpkin?’ Remember, it’s usually a perfect 75 on Christmas Day here, too.
Sheva (BatSheva Vaknin)