Last thing I remember, I was
Running for the door
I had to find the passage back
To the place I was before
‘Relax,’ said the night man,
‘We are programmed to receive.
You can check-out any time you like,
But you can never leave!’
Bright and early Thursday August 2nd, I will be driving my little red 2005 Chevrolet Aveo across America. After 22 years in California, it is INDEED time for me to go home. (Or at least a 4 hour drive from home.) It’s been a wonderful run, a great experience….and a huge part of my life…BUT, California has changed and I haven’t.
I have decided to leave California, transfer within my company, and move to a town just outside of Orlando, FL. I thought I would stay here for life, but the California dream has lost its luster. What started out as an amazing melange of things to do, people to meet, and places to see has turned into a bilious dissonance- of social ills, warped values, and deleterious mores.
In short, California has become incredibly toxic.
The gangs, the crime, the moral equivocation festoons your life. It threatens children, family, and everyone you love. My initial excitement and attraction to California has been replaced by jaundice and acrimony.
And she said ‘We are all just prisoners here, of our own device’
And in the master’s chambers,
They gathered for the feast
They stab it with their steely knives,
But they just can’t kill the beast
I became a prisoner of California, and certainly….of my own device. I do appreciate all the opportunities this state has offered me, but the bitter now outweighs the sweet. As a matter of perspective, I thought it important that I capture a few of the salient threads in my decision:
I will miss….
1. Laguna Beach and Pacific Coast Hwy
2. Jogging along the beach in Long Beach.
3. Sunday afternoons listening to Flamenco guitars at Fashion Island in Newport Beach
4. Eating the best hotdog (bacon wrapped with grilled onions, peppers, mustard and relish!) on the Planet at the Farmer’s Market in San Pedro.
5. Anaheim Angels baseball on a Saturday Night in the summer.
6. Smoking a good Corona or Arturo Fuente cigar with my friends once a month.
7. Hiking in Malibu canyon.
8. All the art museums.
9. Doing the LA Sunday Times crossword puzzle.
10. Pushing my son Joshua around Ralph’s grocery store in a cart that looks like a Race Car.
What I won’t miss….
1. Spanish signs in Banks, Drug Stores, and Malls
2. Spanish Billboards, Spanish TV Channels, and Spanish Phone messaging.
3. Waiting in the Long Beach Children’s hosptial ER room for 4 hours because hundreds of illegal aliens are in line ahead of you.
4. Waiting at a stoplight through 2 changes because hordes of pedestrians are slowly crossing the street.
5. Bumping, stumbling, or tripping over dogs and PETS that shoppers have been allowed to bring into stores because shop owners are too worried about political correctness- and not dictate policy.
6. The massive demonstrations by illegal aliens, gay activists, and unions.
7. Being threatened by grocery union members when I shop.
8. The overcrowded public parks, schools, and hospitals.
9. Being shot at by gangbangers on Valentine’s Day.
10. The massive traffic jams and freeway road rage.
11. Having my truck broken into three times and my car twice.
12. Having to buy a 9mm Smith and Wesson to protect myself and my family.
13. The stoplights on freeway on-ramps.
14. The bastion of social policy and liberal insanity- the Sacramento Legislature
15. The incessant focus and adulation of celebrity and fame.
16. Next door neighbors not knowing each other.
17. The complete abdication of personal responsibility.
18. The complete breakdown of the California public school system.
19. The burden of paying for insurance to cover the outrageous cost of workman’s compensation.
20. The constant liberal bias expressed by LA TV stations and LA print media.
The quality of life here has eroded significantly. And it’s time….it’s time for me to move on.