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  • William Hanchey

    I was homeless in Los Angeles for over a year and lived on the side of the on ramp at Cahuenga and the 101. Not the best times in my life personally but I grew to love Los Angeles . I miss it . I could go on and on about it but will keep it simple, I loved the experience , good or bad. learned alot

  • Patrick Holmes

    L.A. Story
    I have these memories of a place it seems like it was in the basement of a large building at the park by our house in Altadena. Loma Alta Park. I was two or three. These are some of my first memories. My Dad got his firs treal job at JPL. When very young memories of iconic L.A. things, buildings, Sepulveda dam. A dam most see off in the distance from the freeway, or on commercials for cars, I spent time there as a kid watching model airplanes fly with my dad. Disneyland, parks with rocket ships to play on, Rose parade waiting's, anxious anticipations to see the big floats come around the bend, beaches and warm surf to play in, famous beaches to some, just the beach to a kid living there. When three we moved. Dad got a new job working for a new company doing science for the government. Moved to Santa Barbra. Good move! Away from the traffic and the bigness of L.A. to the much calmer, quite, beautiful, beach town of Santa Barbra. This was the mid to late 60's A time when California was king, best schools, lots of money, big growth. We always went down to L.A. for this and that at that time. Drove through many times over the years. Those times there and those drives through are etched in my mind. We have friends there, old friends from Santa Barbra, that moved back down to where they were from. Thousand oaks', Tustin. I have not seen them for many years they love it there. In the heartland of the Angle. I have a good friend I knew here in Portland, where I live now, moved down to L.A. twelve years ago, ended up in Santa Monica. Spent a few years out in the heat of studio city. Visited him when they were out there, one year, it was 102 on Halloween that year. I went out early that hot night ,My friend and his wife stayed home in the cool of an air conditioned apartments. I wanted to be out, see the sights. they were not far from sunset. I walk the iconic walk, went into some cool shops, found a cool bar to hang out in. Did the L.A. thing partied and then went to eat. Some famous burger place, an L.A. chain, not national, fancy burgers, packed. Got a seat ordered and looked around. David Spade across the way in a booth, talking animatedly to a very nice looking Blonde across from him, someone very know by many but I did not know her name, just know she was somebody. Drunks and wanabies, bums hanging around the side streets, movie makers and financers mingled there in the burger bar. An L.A. seen. Walked back to Carol and Jerry's apartment with another found memory of L.A. In my head. So many more. We happened to be in L.A. mother and sister's and at the Grauman's Chinese theater the day R2D2 and 3CPO got their feet put in cement. We had no idea this was going on until we got up close, there they all where the big and little stars of star wars in a pack of fans and cameras. So many more good memories of this L.A. I really do not have any bad ones. I can say I have been lucky in L.A. I do not count getting stuck in Traffic it happens everywhere:-)
    Patrick

  • Alessandra Rizzotti

    Los Angeles has always been my home. It's a place that I don't find foreign, like a lot of people who live here do. But I was sheltered growing up. I never really grew up around diversity until I went to college and starting doing social work in south LA. And that's what is magical about Los Angeles. The amount of culture you can find here. I live by MacArthur Park now. It's gentrifying, but thankfully not as quickly as Silverlake did. There's still a melting pot that I get to surround myself with daily.

    • William Hanchey

      I use to go to the Yoshinaya across the street from McArthur Park almost every morning . Loved all the activity on Averado and also hopping the Red Line down there .

  • Aurora Matthews

    I saw a link to this story and immediately had to join this site. I feel compelled to move to L.A. because I feel drawn there. I knew I was going to make it my home when I first got off the plane and was instantly in love when I visited. I feel in love with all of the diversity, the community and everything else. L.A. is a land of dreams...there is this magic in the air! I should be set to be there later in the year and I honestly can't wait to get back out there. I feel like I have something to offer the place. Thank you for this lovely article and thank you for making me feel more inspired to continue on this path <3

    • Jelena Woehr

      I know EXACTLY that feeling. This is a city I never expected to love. I got on the plane thinking "I can live anywhere for a few years if I love my job." I wasn't even out of LAX before I felt like I'd come home. I went straight to the nearest beach and stared at the ocean and the surfers in their December wetsuits. I'm still discovering new things I love every day. There's an underground concert event I go to fairly regularly and the first time I got there I kept telling everyone I met "I've finally found the people I didn't know I was looking for my whole life." The sense of community, diversity, creativity, the level of constructive confrontation, the dialogue, the heart, the implicit belief that everyone in LA is one big break from greatness, the "let's do something together!" attitude where you meet someone one day and you're launching a project with them the next day...

      Let me know when you get back here. We'll have an LA love-fest and cry about how we transplants have finally come home to the city of dreams.

      • Lee Fatone

        Love it! Count me in on the love-fest!

    • Lee Fatone

      Welcome! I love that this article inspired you to join. Keep us updated on your move! I also recently moved to LA a little over a year ago. I had a similar experience, I came as a visitor and immediately knew that this was where I was supposed to be. It took a while to get here, but now that I am I don't plan on leaving any time soon!

  • Jorge Fiffe

    It's very awesome of you to share your love for Los Angeles, Ben. Kudos! I'm thinking you've inspired a new motto: "Take what's GOOD and make it BETTER."

  • mindsnapshots

    What an inspiring story Ben:)
    Thank you for reminding us to always strive to add value!
    Love this

  • nishantm191

    Ben, Thank you for sharing this! I know someone who would be perfect for this project. She is a resident of Detroit and is working tirelessly to bring back Detroit's lost glory. Let me know how I can recommend her for this.

    • Chris Marshall

      Hey there,

      Over the course of the next few months we will be posting a number content pieces that deal not only with why we love cities in general, but also exploring the attributes that make them great. I am sure your friend will have an amazing perspective on how these attributes ( Work/Life Balance, Transportation, Green Spaces, Civic Engagement, etc.) help / hinder Detroit's resurgence. We'd love to have her voice in the community as we encourage debate about these issues. She can always reach out to our community directly at Community@goodinc.com or help@goodinc.com and we will find them.

      Much respect,

      Chris.

      • nishantm191

        Chris,

        Thank you for the reply. I will let ask her to get in touch with your team! Keep continuing the great work.

        Cheers,
        Nishant

  • Lara Vu

    Ben thanks for sharing. Your story inspired me so much compelling me to meet you in LA when you recently arrived. And again your sequel continues to inspire 11..12 years later...and compels me to write this post! So glad to hear that you've made a nest in LA and thanks for the GREAT good that GOOD continues to bring.

  • Salah Malhawi

    Great story Ben! Thank you for giving us the opportunity to read it.

  • KatieClayton

    Awesome! I live in Houston, Texas and it's amazing!

  • Grant Garrison

    LA is lucky to have you and deserves you given all that ride on its future. I'm bummed we (New England/NYC) lost you but glad LA gets your unique and efficacious energy and talents.

    (Also, I will always remember when the LAPD thought your old Explorer was abandoned with your two dogs barking away inside of it because a concerned resident near the old GOOD offices didn't appreciate let's just say your sense of in-car organization. You didn't get the least bit annoyed, as I would have, but instead used it as an opportunity to talk to me about how you loved being a citizen, someone with a stake in the LAPD. And I thought I was a civics nerd.)

  • Chris Marshall

    I came to Los Angeles for love and for new opportunities. What I discovered was a vibrant and diverse city filled with unexpected treasures. I spent the first few months riding my bike all over the place - I got into great shape and discovered awesome treasures, like the reservoirs in Hollywood and off of Coldwater Canyon. But I also had some unexpected accidents and difficulties in finding my groove. LA is a serious mash-up of cultures, values and interests. You can get into it, or away from it all. I love that conflict. Its dangerous and fun, delicious, and disastrous. Thanks LA.

  • Tom Maybrier

    Beautiful illustration and a great story. The future really is up for grabs everywhere and the die is definitely not cast for LA - I've never lived in a city that's so dynamic, always changing and evolving. Hopefully we can all do our part to change it for the better.

  • Jelena Woehr

    Ben, this moved my heart. I'm spreading my wings in Los Angeles now--it'll be six months this Thursday, in fact. KDAY is a special part of my morning. Griffith Park is my playground and gym. This is a really special city, and your story captures what it means to the millions of people who've fallen in love with this totally unique place in the world.

    • Aurora Matthews

      Happy 6 months on moving to an amazing city! I can't wait to get back out there and then I'll be celebrating my 6 months someday too! I'm so in love with the place! <3

    • Paris Marron

      Six months already! That has flown by! Glad to have you in LA :)

  • la2la

    A native Angeleno, I spent my years as a kid—and quite a few as an adult—in L.A. I went through elementary, junior, and senior high school in the LAUSD, spent summers at city parks, pools, and libraries, and proudly performed in local parades and events. I mastered the art of freeway driving, and learned the back roads during rush-hour traffic. I began my career at the local PBS and NPR affiliates, and had the good fortune to work at entertainment landmarks including Paramount Studios and the Capitol Record Tower. I supported my city, volunteered for its various causes, and championed it to anyone who dared speak unkindly of it. While work has taken me far from my beloved L.A., I remain one of its most passionate ambassadors. In the words of a former California governor (okay, and movie star), "I'll be back."

      • la2la

        You inspired me to remember all of of the good things about "the coolest place around." Thank you!

    • Bristol Baughan

      Thank you for sharing your story. What is the beautiful black and white photo of? Where are you now?

      • la2la

        That is the old Eagle Rock branch of the L.A. Public Library ... gorgeous building, I believe it's now home to the Eagle Rock Historical Society.