by Lynn Dickinson
So I grew up in Detroit, a hard-scrabble place where the weak are killed and eaten. Somehow I managed to land an adulthood in Santa Monica, California. I've been here now for over twenty years.
Santa Monica is the kind of place where people from all over the world come to visit for two weeks in August, or maybe July. The rest of the year, it's ours. The people here tend to be liberal, spiritual, community-minded, environmentally-conscious and politically active. We do yoga, meditate, exercise outdoors and eat organic, locally-farmed, fresh produce that we buy at the farmers market or the local food co-op. There are plenty of people here who could afford to live anywhere they choose, and they choose Santa Monica. Those people live north of Montana street - or at least north of Wilshire Blvd. The rest of us live in rent controlled apartments, and opt into low-paying service professions or the uncertain livelihood of the entertainment industry.