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To Live and Die in L.A.

"Got to get away. To live and die in L.A." - Wang Chung

By Alberto Marrero Salas
Published on LatinoLA: April 18, 2009


To Live and Die in L.A.


Los Angeles -- April the 17th 2009. City Council approves punitive DWP water rates to those considered ' Water Hogs".

Are you a water hog? I'm I ? No one really knows as the City Council approved the rate hikes without ever knowing who would be considered a water hog.

This at a time when unemployment has hit historically high levels. This at a time when we are all barely keeping our heads above water. This at a time when foreclosures are at an all time high. You are losing your home you just got laid off. Take this, you water hog!.

Thank you City Council for making life a little harder in LA.

"Every time I turn the light
I feel that God is not in heaven
In the dark of the night
The dark of the night"

But there is something here that keeps us all. Could it be breakfast at the Pantry on 9th St.? Could it be our Mayor? Could it be our squeaky clean government? Could it be that the daughter of the Mayor is paid $62,000 plus benefits for God knows what by the taxpayers?

No perhaps it's our all wise City Council that awarded $2 million dollars plus to a fireman after a prank where he ate some dog food. At a million a bite I say, "Pass the Purina."

"And I can't get away
To live and die in LA "

No, it can't be that. Maybe it's the pastrami at Langer's on Wilshire and Alvarado.

Maybe it's the one of the highest sales tax in the country. If you are really lucky and live in South Gate or Pico Rivera you get to pay 10 ?? %. On Easter I had the great joy of having 10 of my 14 grandchildren at my home (other four in Dallas). I went out to buy them some silly little gifts. I paid $13 in sales tax. To build a train you and I will never see.

Perhaps that's it.

"But I am held in some invisible vise
And I can't get away
To live and die in LA"

No. It must be the Latino influence in LA. That's why we stay. Margaritas at El Cholo in North Hollywood. Pupusas at El Carbonero on Cahuenga and Lankersheim or maybe a Cuban sandwich at El Colmao on Pico in LA or at Porto's in Glendale.

Or perhaps is it the prime ribs at Pacific Dinning Car on 6th St.? Yes that's why we stay here. Or maybe Lawry's on La Cienega. What about the barbecue served at the Bear Pit in Northridge, California or the French dip at Philippes on Alameda?

"I wonder why I live alone here
I wonder why we spend these nights together
Is this the room I'll live my life forever
I wonder why in LA
To live and die in LA."

Or maybe it has nothing to do with food or culture. Perhaps we enjoy being an hour and half away from the snow the beach or the desert. Maybe it's Kahlifonia itself and not Los Angeles.

Maybe its our Governator Ahnold who ran on a no new tax pledge and doubled the car tax. Maybe that's it. We admire his vision. He decided to spend spend and spend, knowing by the start of 2007 that real estate values in Kahlifonia were plunging therefore throwing the State into a budget deficit that he knew all along, with the California legislature, that we could not meet.

We are ready to pay the highest income tax, the highest sales tax because we love Kahlifonia. We love the corrupt Democrat and Republican legislature and their bosses the public employees unions.

Maybe that's why we stay.

"Got to get away
To live and die in LA."

A big THANK YOU to Wang Chung and their remarkable soundtrack.

About Alberto Marrero Salas:
Partner Nacara 2000 Immigration Law. Worked during the go go 70's and 80's on Wall Street. Merrill Lynch, Prudential Bache.
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