Yesterday I had lunch with an old friend who is attractive, funny, hip, well-educated, and gainfully employed. He has a girlfriend, but we’ve stayed in touch over the years. I enjoy his company and made him laugh over my hammed-up tales of woe.
It was one of those afternoons that reminded me why I moved back. In L.A. I made little headway with men of his caliber– not just in the dating realm but socially as well. I remained too much of an audience member for anyone to get to know me and appreciate what I had to offer.
I read an article a few months ago about people moving to Buffalo from New York City. A woman was quoted as saying that in N.Y.C., she had tons of opportunity to consume culture, but in Buffalo she has much more opportunity to create it.
I keep reminding myself of that quote. I do miss the variety of cultural events that were on offer in L.A. This city is far from shabby in its offerings, but they are smaller league, and I’m more interested here in being a participant than a spectator.
I do get a pang sometimes when I listen to podcasts and remember the depth and variety of talent L.A. has to offer; however, I superficially knew many of those people and our relationships never went beyond being placed on Facebook invitations to shows. As I wrote long ago, it was a strange dynamic, being invited into someone’s personal life virtually but not in reality.
I knew that if I moved away, I would have many “what if” moments, where I would wonder what would have happened if I had remained in L.A. just a little bit longer. Maybe I would have eventually befriended the people who most intrigued me? So I remind myself that six years is more than enough time for that to have happened, and I don’t want to look back and realize that decades of my life passed by while I remained in “what if?” mode.