The Salad Bowl

My first years in Los Angeles, I admit I was a bit dismayed that it didn’t reflect the picture of the city I had in mind. I had expected L.A. to exemplify the epitome of what this country was supposedly founded upon. What that would be, of course, is a haven for immigrants insomuch as the fact that we’ve all moved here to “make it a better place for everyone.”

I pictured everyone getting along with everyone else.

Of course, that included preconceived notions of adults and children of all different colors – equal in proportion – in circles holding hands and playing Ring Around The Rosie on every lawn. (This was something I got cheated out of by being born an Asian American native of a predominantly white Wisconsin.) Blacks got along with latinos (because they’re not all Mexican), and the Asians loved the blacks equally, indiscriminately to the whites.


Because you know, if it’s any city that’s a melting pot, it should be New York and Los Angeles. It just made perfect sense to me. Of course, I qualify this with the naïveté that being age 17 affords. When the grass is greener on the other side, it’s not just greener in color – it’s lush and velvety to the touch.

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