News broke on Facebook and Twitter and practically everywhere else in LA last week that “YAYYY NEW YORK LOVES US YAAYYYYY!!!” With the headline “Los Angeles Is The Future” and a neighborhood-by-neighborhood breakdown of what is what, you feel comfortable and ready to shout praises. It’s like your big brother just gave you that pat on the back for hitting your one hundredth homerun–except this is the one he actually chose to acknowledge.
The context seems to be everything in this LA loving New York Post article. The piece is very obviously coming from our bitter East coast rival and is positioned to be this Moses moment, parting the golden sea of corn in the Great Plains making a direct line from Williamsburg to Silverlake: “Follow the Yellow Brick Road to Los Angeles, New Yorkers–the rent is livable there!” The article kind of reads like a touristy love letter, a Zagat takeaway of what to do and who to see regardless of how jaded you are.
It isn’t without its niceties (Comparing us to London was sweet; Yes, thanks for the many Metro mentions) but–again–it’s coming from the New York Post. Lest we forget the Murdoch ran and oft biased newspaper is frequently the point of laughs. It’s lowbrow daily and highbrow tabloid: take your pick of how you take it. They’ve been criticized time and time again and certainly do not standup to their humble beginning nor do they compare with the likes of New Yorker, New York Magazine, The New York Times, etc. How can we forget these groundbreaking cover stories of theirs that compared the plummeting stocks to a hooker or their sad-but-funny report on a Colombian Wolf Boy?
We’re not ungrateful for the pat on the back. We aren’t! However, it does seem a little suspicious. We can hometown pride all we want but coming from an institution like the New York Post is a little unsettling. Is Rupert Murdoch going to try to annex Los Angeles and make it the New New York Away From The Original New York? Will the Downtown LA they praise become a giant printing press whose ink will run through the LA River into all of the other neighborhoods? Who knows.
The article is an ironic olive branch without any fruit. It’s an acknowledgement that basically says, “Yeah, we’ve kind of been wrong all these years but we only say that now because New York is unlivable.” It doesn’t rectify any of the shit talking that has come from the East previously nor does it seem to be ushering in a new wave of thought. Angelenos will continue to move to New York as will New Yorkers will continue to move to Los Angeles. There will always be those New Yorkers who hate us and those Angelenos who hate them.
It’s good press, sure. But at what cost? I guess we’ll all have to see. Maybe it really is well intentioned! Or maybe this is all in support of that new NFL stadium people are trying to have placed Downtown. It wouldn’t at all be surprising if Uncle Rupert had a hand in that money bag, too.