Today I bring you a guest post on the war of the best coasts from Doniree. I’ve said a lot about LA and NYC and LA vs NYC and how I love them both and I thought why not turn this over to someone else who isn’t from either place? Not because I’m an elitist jerk (though let’s be logistical, I am) but because I want to see the shoe on the other foot or the table turned around to face the wall or whatever.
Long ago, in a Midwestern town [probably not that] far, far away, I once heard someone say [something to the effect of],
You’re either an LA person, or you’re a New York City person.
The critic in me immediately questioned this, wondering why someone couldn’t simply be *both*. Were they really that different? They’re both big, coastal, diverse, culture-rich cities, right? Why can’t you love both?
And then I actually visited LA, and then I visited New York City, and I just got it. And I know, beyond a shadow of a shred of a doubt, that I am in that right-hand, East coast column: I’m a NYC person.
I don’t hate LA
It should first be stated that by categorizing myself as a “NYC person,” I’m not saying that I dislike LA. In fact, I kind of like it. (Kind of. I think). It’s sunny. I like sunshine. I like beaches. I like fish tacos. The Pacific Ocean is cool.
However, I hate [driving in] traffic. Like, a lot. I don’t even own a car, and here in Portland, Oregon, that’s totally fine. There’s no way I’d willingly subject myself to the clusterfuck that is the L.A. freeway system on any sort of regular basis.
I’m a total pansy, I know.
However, if I had to choose one over the other, I can safely say I’d choose New York City. Here’s why:
State the Obvious: The Traffic
I like to walk, and I’m totally down with public transportation. I actually think the Subways in NYC are kind of cool. Maybe because I’m always there as a tourist or for work, and the novelty hasn’t worn off, but still. I don’t have to drive anywhere? And I can get everywhere? SIGN ME UP.
Ooh! Shiny!: NYC is Sparkly
There is something absolutely magical and mesmerizing about the NYC skyline, whether you’re looking at it or smack dab in the middle of it, at any time of day. At sunrise, it’s kind of serene and lovely. During the day, it’s busy, bustling, exciting. Even the “quiet” neighborhoods are lively. And don’t even get me started about New York City at night. Maybe it’s just because I’m a fan of all things sparkly, but I LOVE city lights and New York City just makes me feel magical.
Om Nom Nom: The FOOD
There is absolutely no shortage of amazing restaurants in NYC, and I’m not talking about the fancy ones. I like the tiny little cafes, tucked in between cheese shops and boutiques. The coffee shops and bagel shops on the corner of an old brick building.
Before you stone me for implying that the food in LA isn’t amazing, wait just a hot second. I know that’s not true. But I can’t name a single restaurant in LA that I’ve ever been to (the closest I can come to remembering places that have impressed me is that there was once an awesome patio and mimosas at some place on a hill that Nico and I had lunch at once; oh, and the food trucks). On the flip side, I’m fairly positive I can name every single place in NYC I’ve ever had a single bite. Because NYC food is memorable.
Caveat/Conclusion: More time in LA is needed
Here’s where I admit the root of my complete and utter
bias preference towards New York over Los Angeles: I’ve spent waaaay more time in the Big Apple than I have the City of Angels, so one might assume I’m simply more comfortable there because it’s more familiar. And sure, that might be true.
Here’s the thing though: I know a gut feeling when I have one, and I know that something magical happens on the inside, in my heart, in my pants (where it counts), when I get to NYC, and it’s different than the feeling I get when I get to LA.
New York City feels all romantic and like a first love, whereas Los Angeles feels like that cute guy you flirted with in middle school art class: it’s fun, it’s cute, but there’s not really a spark that’ll last.
Or maybe I’m just totally and completely jealous that my Scotch-Irish skin will never be California-girl tan. And this is my way of dealing with that.
Ok, your turn. LA or NYC? And if LA, tell me why and I’m totally willing to show up with an open mind next time I’m there.
Doniree Walker is a freelance writer/blogger based in Portland, Oregon. She spends her free time frequenting Portland’s farmers’ markets, training for her first 5K, and daydreaming about the places she plans to travel. She blogs at doniree.com and nomadicfoodie.com, and you can follow her on Twitter @doniree., and her clients include UMoveFree, a service helping renters find Rockwall, TX apartments.