I Was (Mostly) Wrong About Costa Mesa
I moved to Costa Mesa two weeks ago, and I owe the city an apology.
Many years ago, I tried to enter a store at The LAB, but the doors were locked. It turned out the store hadn’t yet opened for the day, but instead of telling me that, the guy behind the counter just laughed his hey-everybody-look-at-me dreads off.
This can best summarize how I’ve long seen Costa Mesa, just one gangly hipster who thinks I’m a doofus because I don’t brew my own face tonic and I unironically enjoy Los Lobos from time to time.
That all changed last year when I started working for a media startup in Newport Beach, finally giving up on my former ambition of sucking down recycled air in the cubicle farms of Irvine for the rest of my life. I worked for companies that had higher-ups who looked endlessly on the verge of calling out, “You there! Boy! What day is today?”
The job in Newport Beach, with its relatively young employee base and in-office beer, proved to be much more of an eye-opener than I anticipated. I started going to happy hours in the area.
Now, for years, drinking in Newport Beach to me was either a long, disgusting, unspeakable night at Rudy’s or a long, disgusting, unspeakable day at Mutt Lynch’s. Drinking in Costa Mesa meant watching a short film about, I don’t know, live panda births, projected against the wall of Mesa.
I used to think this city was mostly just vaudevillian dudes and steampunk chicks talking about the value of suspenders over belts and how to bring the unicycle back to mainstream underground prominence, all while chomping down on organic artisanal fig compote that their neighbor made as part of a barter system.
Read the rest at The Orange County Register.