Real estate speculators wouldn’t let me sleep last night

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Los Angeles was developed as a giant real estate speculation by speculators looking to lure mid-Westerners out here for the weather. The great thing about the business model was that, because the weather is so mild, they could build houses pretty cheaply (out of wood and stucco, instead of brick and steel).

The developers didn’t exactly splurge on the infrastructure, for the most part. Hence the crazy tangle of electric lines dangling haphazardly off utility polls all over the city (except Beverly Hills, where I believe they’ve buried them).*

And, hence, my kid waking up last night when the wind blew tree branches into the power lines, knocking out my power, and disabling  his white noise machine.

So, if you see me today and I look bleary-eyed, know it’s because I was singing The Gambler to a two year old at 2:30AM because some developers cheaped out on utility costs in the 1920s.

*If you want to read more about the history of Los Angeles, I can’t recommend City of Quartz, by Mike Davis, highly enough. You just need to kind of ignore the Marxist slant.

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