Oh, San Diego.
In 2001, I moved here by chance-- flipped a coin. It was here or Santa Barbara. My friend Anna said I owed it to her. She had lived in Tampa Florida with me for a year, and now it was my time to pay up. I was required to move with her to California. She wanted to be near her LA boyfriend... but not too near. So the decision came down to SD or SB. A coin was flipped. A quarter, I think. And a decision was made.
I landed in Pacific Beach. I think a lot of people make that mistake when they first move to San Diego. It sounds like a nice place. The other newbies in our apartment complex had made a similar defective judgment on cool neighborhoods in San Diego. They were from the East Coast somewhere, and I am pretty sure they moved right back to where they came from after their PB experience. But upstairs there were some regulars and long-term PB residents. The kind that belong there. For instance, the really short and anxious bill collector who always had a 72 oz diet soda attached to his face. There was also the very strange (and frighteningly stupid) part-time father dude who couldn't hold a job because if a swell came in he would be out surfing.
Great I had moved to some sort of big, tan, fat, frat-boy-retirement party explosion... or something just as terrible. I remember going by my self to a hookah bar because it looked like the coolest place around then returning home to our lonely little apartment. As I had to listen to Sublime pumped down on me through my ceiling, all I could do was cry. Why had I left Florida? At least in Tampa they had super divey dive bars with punk rock jukeboxes and beer specials. "Oh, what I wouldn't give to go back to The Brass Mug", I sobbed, snot dripping from my nose. "I aint got no Santaria. I aint got no crystal ball..." the music got louder. "I fucking hate San Diego," I thought --outloud. I pulled my pillow over my head a cired.
Somehow, I think though some online research like, "Cool bars in San Diego" (or some such thing). I found the Livewire, and from that day forward I decided San Diego wasn't all that bad...