*Sniff* *Sniff* Hey, can you smell that? That's the smell of the beach in the air, and it's an everyday thing in California, Oregon and Washington (and don't kid yourself, other parts of the West are cool but these three are the only West Coast states.) Whether you visit us for sights, the beaches or the chill atmosphere, you'll fall in love with our coast and will never wanna leave. Here's several (but by no means all) reasons why. Listening to Ice Cube's "You Know How We Do It" while reading is optional but recommended.
1. The Mexican food
California used to be part of Mexico, and the state still maintains a strong Latin cultural influence. If your idea of good Mexican food is Chipotle, then you haven't lived and I feel sorry for you. From the Mission Style Burrito in San Francisco to the California Burrito in San Diego, the West Coast has its tortilla-wrapped meat, cheese and salsa amalgamation on lock. If you're ever visiting the West and find yourself in Northern California, try Taqueria San Francisco or La Taqueria, both in San Francisco (La Taqueria is officially America's best burrito.)
2. The horticulture
We're very passionate about botany in Washington, Oregon and California.
3. The Music
Now, I can't be so vain as to say music is always better on the West Coast. But when you feel like hearing some slaps you can kick back and smoke a joint to (as Eazy-E would say) there's nothing better than that smooth, laid back West Coast sound. And c'mon, you know you wish they could all be California Girls, too.
4. The slanguage
We're doin' it moving out here, just shaking hands and kissing babies while we layin' up in the cuts, bruh bruh. You marks aren't up on this, always pimpetrating and cupcakin' with our words. I thought you thought, cuddy. Yadadai'msayin?
If you don't, in fact, yadadai'msayin, then I highly recommend you listen to the above track by Bay Area rap artist Rafael Casal. The lyrics and the beat's sample are quit ingenious.
5. Lowrider culture
Growing up in San Francisco's Mission District, watching lowriders bouncing up and down 24th Street during Carnaval was an annual tradition that I looked forward to like it was Christmas. Now, I may just be a corny white boy, but I don't care who you are, if you don't find something beautiful in the sight of candy-painted old school muscle cars three-wheeling down the city streets, well, you're nothing but a philistine. Low and slow, baby, low and slow.
6. The history of social justice activismanti-war movements. The spirit of past decades continues today, especially in the areas of San Francisco, Seattle, Portland and Los Angeles. "Sanctuary City" my be a dirty term in right wing circles, but the proud residents of our West Coast cities know that our cultural identities were built on the fact that we've historically welcomed minorities of all kinds with open arms. And as anyone who grew up in San Francisco or Seattle can tell you, we've been going to anti-war protests since we were knee-high.
7. The Pacific Northwest
I'm a Californian, and we have beautiful palm trees and redwoods, but the top half of the West Coast is a whole other world. Most people use the terms "California" and "West Coast" interchangeably, which I've always felt is unfair. Because of its considerable rainfall, the home of Sasquatch is a green paradise unlike any other part of the country, full of beautiful forests and snowy white mountains. Shout out to the states of Oregon and Washington. You are truly the icing on the cake that is my California soul, and an indispensable part of our West Coast region.