West Hollywood (Part 1): Psalms 119 – 120

How can a young person stay on the path of purity?
    By living according to your word.

Psalms 119:9 (NIV)

I never liked California. Now granted, I had never been there, but still, all of the stereotypes and details that floated their way to the East Coast just sounded awful. I look my best when most clothed – from argyle sweater to argyle socks and thick corduroys between. Of course I would be afraid of a state known for its perma-summer weather, where shorts and t-shirts were required. Additionally, I had heard:

  1. Everyone is super vapid.
  2. It’s all about the “industry,” meaning the entertainment industry.
  3. The traffic is just the worst.
  4. Everyone looks “pretty,” and no one is real.
  5. Behind Las Vegas, it is the most appropriate modern equivalent to Sodom and Gomorrah.

Oh, and more than anything, California – particularly Los Angeles and San Francisco – was “super gay.” Now, recall that my first venture into a gay bar left little to write home about; that is a good thing for a person expecting the most debauchery-filled worst. So, yes, I was looking forward to seeing what a truly gay-friendly culture looked like, and no, I never publicly admitted that minor excitement to a single person. It was fear. I was far more comfortable looking on from afar in judgment, on my manly, handcrafted pedestal.

I arrived just as the sun dipped below the horizon, and my brother suggested a quick turn around his apartment and heading out and about.

And the fearful stereotypes were certainly out and about that night…

  1. A drunk lesbian offered to buy me a new “actually good” shirt.
  2. Most everyone I met was an actor, apparently trying to corner the “gay best friend” market.
  3. Ugh. The traffic was just the worst.
  4. Many of the guys wore make up – not theatrical “drag” make up, but actual “cover my flaws” make up.
  5. While I didn’t get the whole “Sodom and Gomorrah” vibe, a few chanting Christians with awful signs sure as hell seemed convinced of it.

Yep so it turned out, California was super gay. And I started to worry that I had been birthed into the wrong culture.

Some alternative observations tomorrow…

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