Move Over New York, LA Tops You On—Being Rude
By Annie Suh —
In a new survey released by Travel & Leisure, LA ranked number one as the rudest city in America—not New York. Blame it on the car culture (the excessive horn honkers in Beverly Hills) and notorious traffic (the I-405 that moves 4 or 5 mph), which may be half responsible for all the meanness, but what about the other half that spills out when we’re on foot? Are we really ruder than the “saucy” New Yorkers?
My first visit to New York was four and a half years ago. I remember taking the bus from LaGuardia Airport to Times Square because a taxi had been out of my budget—I was still barely out of college and broke. At the first stop, a man entered, almost fell from the sudden thrust during takeoff, then confronted the bus driver and all hell broke lose (while the bus was still moving). “Don’t be tellin’ me what to do! Once you pass the white line, it ain’t my business. Just go sit down and shut your mouth!”
On our second day there, we asked a passerby or two where the TKTS booth was and they completely ignored us. And that’s when the stereotype was confirmed—New Yorkers are mean people, period. Then I moved to New York two years later and changed my mind. I admired their drive and energy. People were honest, not mean. Focused, not angry. They were considerate, minding their own business.
It was like this: New Yorkers were comfortable stabbing people in the front while Angelinos were more comfortable stabbing people in the back. But at least those in the Big Apple were being truthful. So what was up with LA?
And then it occurred to me. LA is comfortable and laid back. We have the beaches, the sunny weather, wide open spaces for privacy and the entertainment industry that can make us spoiled, lazy, narcissistic and superficial as a whole. Meghan, a food service worker spoke the bitter truth on KPCC’s Air Talk when she commented,
Angelinos are the rudest customers: the most impatient, the worst tippers, the most ready to complain about prices for food as they pull their designer wallets from their designer jeans. As a customer or visitor to many areas in town, I’ve noticed that there is a certain sense of exclusivity that dictates the reception of customers in stores or restaurants. If you don’t look like you belong there, good luck getting a “hello.”
I know I’m writing this for an LA audience, so you might be wondering, why all the negativity when you should be showering the city with love and all the good things it offers like the food, the shopping, the weather and the free-flowing way of life?
Because maybe it’s time for us to take a step back and ask ourselves: Do I contribute to the stereotype of a rude Angelino…in the city of Angels?