San Angeles Diego!
U S Gay, U S Gay, U S Gay!
Prepare the wine, water, hot chocolate or whatever beverage you may want, as this is
gonna be a long one (oi oi). I'm going to take you on my journey from San Francisco to LA. Yes 2 big cities in one blog, oh schmid!
Yes after riding the air new Zealand ﬂight manned by the Butlin caretakers, we arrive in
North America's main body, good old USA. And being the raving queen that I am (bleurgh,
I wrote that for comedy effect and now I feel nausea) , I head straight to the gay capital,
Ok more unnecessary honesty but I'm not exactly thrilled to be in USA, please put down
the pitchforks yankees and stop cheering Canada, but I've been here before. Unlike the
rest of the trip where I've never been to any of the previous places, I've already been
treated to the American lifestyle. I know what to expect in terms of culture, attitude and
living standards, however......
As soon as I get off the plane, I love it, it's like everyone took a Quaalude and jägerbomb,
relaxed but somehow overly excitable. The security guard gleefully, looks in my bags in
another "random" bag search. Seriously I'm dressed in a green kiwi jumper, which Doreen
used to own, a tired horse face and have baggy jeans on, do I look like someone under the
inﬂuence?! wait a minute, I see their point this time.
Even the walkway to the baggage claim and trains was like a whimsical dramatic moment
from a romcom, the sun is shining, everyone is smiling and I'm just waiting for someone
with ﬂowers to run up to me. OH HERE HE COMES, EEEEE! Oh it's for that bitch behind me, ﬁne ruin my Hollywood moment!
Sorry bloggers, I just need to speak to someone:
Please can you send some representatives from your customer service and management
departments. You may want to witness how a service is actually provided.
When a customer is lost and confused and is milling around the ticket machine, looking
perplexed like its alien technology, your staff are meant to go one step further and come up to the person. Possibly ask where they want to go and show how the machine and system works.
Not only that but also handover a map, giving information on the area they are going to
and what they should look out for. That's more appropriate than giving vague information,
shoving a leaﬂet in someone's hands and rolling your eyes while hufﬁng like a disgruntled
Also hire better looking staff....... I know it's hard to ﬁnd willing people who want a free
pass round London plus a wage higher than some low level ofﬁce jobs, but its not hard.
Thanks and Peace Out,
Brown Bear x
Sorry I'm back, after a chilled journey and detailed, handy directions, I arrive at my hostel,
know that whimsical and magical time I had on the way into the city, f@ck it!
I'm now in the Ghetto, my hostel is off Market Street which
is the main street and it seem strange that I've booked this place. Oh I remember why, EVERYONE loves San Fran so everything is booked way in advance, I tried booking Green Tortoise and other places and that was booked up until my birthday. Gggrrreeeaattt......
Now the hostel I'm in can be summed up in two words "Hell" and "Hole", even just using
one of the words is effective enough. (AAE S.F. European Hostel, San Francisco, USA, no website) just don't stay here, go on treat yourself to a hotel room, sauna, cardboard box, you deserve better. I've gotta say, there's a lot of tramps on the streets, know in the "free section" of this blog where I mentioned count how many tramps are in a certain area, I should take my own advice right now.
One other thing I need to note, there's a surprisingly large amount of American travellers,
not saying its a bad thing just that I've spent a large part of this journey improving my
German, French and Russian. They mainly do it for work and localised travelling purposes,
I just can't see it working in the UK, I can't imagine looking for work in Durham while in a
third, I mean fourth, actually ﬁfth rate hostel but I can't imagine that scenario anyway.
Ummm Durham or San Francisco where would I look for work?!?!
So like any reasonable homo in the gay capital of the world where do I go to ﬁrst, that's
right people city hall, an arty gallery and pier 39, oh such fun. City hall is basically a larger
version of St Pauls, and it seemed to be wedding afternoon, several weddings going on,
even a Korean one, where the bride had so much make up on she was literally two paint
strokes away from a Monet or as I like to say she was Thai before all the make up. (I think
it's was part of my art gallery experience as well)
Pier 39, what can I say about this, well it's spectacular there's loads to do and heavily
commericalised, it's like universal studios invaded Brighton Pier and had a helping hand
from Dunkin' Donuts.
Now before when I said, I knew what to expect, well the last time I was in this country the
pound was ﬁercely strong and now it's a whimper at best, when the hell did the most iconic
shopping country become expensive. Anyone requesting souvenirs from me will have to
order it on eBay, it's either a treat for you or a subway for me, oooohhh footlong Italian
B.M.T please, yes extra meat, extra cheese and extra large drink NOW!
The following day I did my little tourist thing and again thanks to the ATO taking more time
then building the London Olympic stadium, I'm limited on what to do! So today I rode the
San francisco cable car (weeeee) head back to the pier 39 and hire a bike to go over the
Golden Gate Bridge. And like magic my phone decides to die as soon as I approach the
bridge. What a ride and what a view, how could Magneto, destroy this bridge has he no
love for arcutechtrial brilliance??
Anyway you can use many companies near the pier, I used(www.blazingsaddles.com/sanfrancisco) they were friendly, helpful and you get a deal to include the bike hire, toll and ferry back I think I get it for $40-50, make sure you check groupon and loving social as they sometimes have deals for this.
Again the lack of photography for this makes it less impressive but you end up at Sausalito
, which I think sounds like a gelato containing sausage, future pregnancy food craving
suggestion for a celeb?!
The Ferry back was ok, it would have been more fun but then it got a bit cloudy and ruined
the view, dam you storm, sorry I'm getting excited about watching the new xmen ﬁlm, eek!
That night I decided to get out of the hostel and go have a subway as cooking in that place
was just pure evil, nothing worked and there was loads of idiots taking all the seats. Oh
hello tramp want a bite of my subway club, hey I said a bite, don't snatch!!
Hallelujah, praise Jebsus! I move out of that god awful hostel (wow blasphemy overload)
and move a few blocks over and end up at USA hostels, good god it's Nomads
Queenstown but with free Wiﬁ and bigger facilities (www.usahostels.com/sanfrancisco ) highly recommended but as I said things get booked up as EVERYONE
loves San Fran. As I'm getting to my last few pennies I'm trying ANYTHING to become a
hostel volunteer, so I can get free accom and food for a few hours work, and what a pain it
is here, people are so dedicated they are there for MONTHS!
That night, I did something I'm not proud of but I had to do it and I went to see the "gay"
area, I head to the main part and I know a lot of you are gonna be I shock but I wasn't
impressed. Put the prada satchels down gays.
Reader, we're gonna do a bit of role play now pretend we are in a large decadent hall, all of a sudden a long aisle appears, you and I walk down this aisle, you look confused yet concerned, I look nervous and anxious. We are now at the end of the aisle, but we turn to the right. I hand you a black and pink robe and long white piece of card, you dress yourself. I go in one compartment, you in the adjacent one.
"dear gay father, please hear me for I have sinned, I have not fallen into the gay scene
stereotype or enjoyed all the things we homos are meant to go wild for in the queer capital. please don't throw a hissy ﬁt. May I have your forgiveness and this week's collection plate earnings, HELP ME, I'M POOR"
I'm sorry the only redeeming feature of the area was the fact it had a gay sports bar, which
was impressive, as people were watching the jocks on tv and not the jocks on the man next
to them. Hello ideal gay bar, I had a couple of drinks, spoke to some guys that explained
the rules of Baseball and American Football. Seriously Baseball is the equivalent of cricket,
it's so friggin boring, I just hope they get the idea from futuruma to make the game more
interesting by having the ball tethered, multiball action and random things coming out of
the walls. Other than that I was home by 10, I got to ride the cable car at night (weeeee!)
(I bet you have a mental image of me with my hands in the air, head back, shouting "Weeee".... you would be correct)
So as I keep saying things are getting ridiculous in terms of cash and hostel availability, I
was nicely persuaded by a smooth talking Yorkshire, oh sorry I mean YORKSHIRE man to
go to LA. bolt bus (and hostel world) here I come. I then spending half a day walking
around San Fran as I've not really seen it and it's an amazing and painfully hilly city, I can
see why the men here have legs to rival the rugby teams or Arnie's Arms circa 1986.
Anyway follow past the usual photos at the bottom for the LA section......(Prepare the laughs to calm down)
LA LA LAND
The journey to LA, oh my, it was cheap, impressively quick and I got to sit next to a
muscular Taio Cruz lookalike, sorry that drool isn't mine, it's ummm.......the cat's?!? These
buses were cool, leather seats, free wiﬁ and quite spacious. Better than Greyhound, I'll
explain that later.
So after 5 hours, I'm in LA, sorry bear with me again:
Can you sort your oyster card system out please, my trip to LA involved not only me
getting a travelcard AT the vending machine without unnecessary paperwork but it worked
straight away. I know the underground is from 1863 but the technology isn't, SORT IT!"
Brown Bear x
P.S can you lower the price of all tickets if you're not going to improve the service effectively? Late night weekends isn't thrilling
Yes it's that smooth and easy to use the underground services here, GOD BLESS
Now, something in me decided to book this place for ease as I felt I would spend a lot of
time here but I was stationed in Hollywood Youth Hostel (another without a website) and let's put it like this, the only reason to stay here is so you can boast you stayed in Hollywood Blvd.....that's it.
On Personal level, the staff were slow and everything was written down so goodbye trees, efﬁciency and professionalism, the wiﬁ was limited to the computer and common room so everyone piled in these rooms, so you get fuck all done. The bathrooms were dirty and the "free" breakfast was baically yesterday's bread served with cheap peanut butter and jelly with one toater between 80 people. I know we have this thing where we recycling fashion like everyone dresses in 90s stuff at the moment but it doesn't go the same for interior decoration, the style was 90s college grafﬁti which was done by a drunk Stevie Wonder.
Overly-Honesty Time - LA sucks! I'm sorry it does, sucks like a Dyson on full power.
I know some of you out there like it for the glitz and glamour and some for the "it's so fake
it's fun", no it just sucks, other than the over indulgent celeb/ star worshipping and
Oscar related stuff, there's nothing here. I came travelling to see new parts of the world
and get away from commercial crap but here it's being vomited on me. HATE HATE HATE
THIS PLACE. sorry I need to lie down. Pass me a tiramisu!!
So I'm here, They're queer but dont get used to me as I'm pissing off when I know what to
My ﬁrst night here was cool, as I went to an all American diner which was run by mexicans,
puerto ricans and one African, now that's the American way.
You're gonna have to read the next paragraph like you are a person with a monotone voice
, who just missed the last bus home, just so you get my feeling.
I did the walk of fame, hiked to the Hollywood sign, went to the Dolby theatre, went to the
ripely you won't believe or not shop, got hugged by darth vader, went to Bel Air and
pretended I was Will Smith, window shopped in Beverley Hills and "admired" at the
Chinese theatre when the true blood ﬁnal season premiere was on! Oh and I got winked at by a black Marilyn Munroe.
Sorry, I know I should be upbeat and happy as not many people get to say they travelled
and stayed in this area, but I'm gonna go all brat here, it's awful. If you read heat magazine, like things so bad they are good or you're a simpleton, you'll love Hollywood.
Surreal Moment of travelling so far - Watching England getting Whooped by Italy in an american bar, being the only Brit in viewable distance and leaning over to the street to see Betty White's Star!!! Just Bizarre!
However boys and girls it's not all doom and gloom, as in an ironic hypocritical twist, I
enjoyed universal citywalk and six ﬂags. For those of you in contact with me on FB and other modes of communication, you would have known it was my birthday recently and by
god, I may have been alone but it's one of my favourites.
They may be overly commercial landmarks in the LA area after Disneyland but by the hairs
of my chinny chin chin, it's loads of fun.
I didn't actually go into the studios part, I wanted to see the infamous walk way which was
saturated in commercialism but with a massive difference, LOADS OF MINIONS FROM
DESPICABLE ME on display :) just so exciting it's unreal. I love them and I want them to
So it's now my birthday and it's the one day, where I know what I'm actually doing in my
life, today we (that's Marvin and I) go to SIX FLAGS MAGIC MOUNTAIN, my heart is just
pounding writing those words. I get up early grinning away to myself for loads of reasons.
Now here's the boring technical bit, how to get there, you can either use the hostels own
personal service which is $20-30 pp or you can do the scenic route which involve a
• Subway to North Hollywood via red metro line $1.50
• 757 bus to Santa clarita which is right outside the subway station $2
• A 3 or 7 bus from Santa clarita to the park, it normally says six ﬂags or magic mountain
I know it's long winded but when it's actually quite quick and you can head to universal
city-walk afterwards if you want for dinner. There's a route from union street subway but
"AIN'T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR DAT!"
You have two choices of park, you have the water park (www.sixflags.com/hurricaneharborla) or the theme park (www.sixflags.com/magicmountain).
If you love roller coasters you'll love this park, if you love DC comics and random rides that fuck you up, I'll cream your jeans!
I'm not even gonna bore with what rides I went on, unless you request it.
As I mentioned I went by myself, normally I would be surrounded by people at a theme
park or birthday but you know what, it's the best time to go, riding rides solo.
They even have a policy on some rides where you get priority seats if you are a solo rider,
I know it's to compensate for no one with mates, but fuck it, if I get to ride my ﬁrst standing
up roller coaster twice in a row, I'm Mr Antisocial.
I'm not sure what was happening but I went on a Monday, I'm not sure if it was a school
holiday. It the place was busy, there were loads of kids around, it was either a holiday or
the reason USA education system is lacking against the world.
Anywhere several hours if being ﬂung at high speed, tossed upside down, drenched and
put on Mickey Rourke's Sex Grill, I head back to CrappyWood. Now kids what did you
learn for the last NZ blog........that's right how to cheer up a black man.
So what do we when you need to maintain that happiness before that black dude realises
he's been screaming and cursing next to a 10 y/o on the Wonder Woman Waltzer ride on a
day by himself on his birthday?!
CORRECT, TAKE HIS SAD ASS TO HOTTERS FOR BOTTOMLESS CHICKEN WING
BUCKET NIGHT W/ PITCHERS OF BEER, WHERE HE'LL SHOW HIS PASSPORT AND
GET A FREE BEER! (you get a gold star, one on each hooter)
So what the hell happened last night?! All I know is that I can barely open my eyes and my
legs hurt and I have no hangover!
Well I have one more night in this hostel of boredom so it's time to head downtown and
spend as much time outside as possible. I couldn't tell you what I did, I look at the photos
and I assume I went somewhere, oh we'll.
The following day was a move to another hostel, as I ended up getting a message from
workaway but the couple that sent the message were a bit sketchy on the details, so they
wasted my time. I ended up at a hostel where I swear was around the corner from the
Dolby Theatre and it felt like you was not even along the strip. (www.orangedrivehostel.com) it was clean, homely, the wiﬁ actually worked and it's had a patio/BBQ area. Not much atmosphere but you;ve just been bombarded with noise on the strip so its a nice change!
As you may have guessed I'm not a fan of LA, the one thing that tipped the balance into
the "I will only return for Disneyland and the theme parks only" category.......LAPD! Jeez I
never knew jaywalking in an empty street could cause so much thension, for them. All I did
was walk along the road where there was no cars, the walkway was next to a hotel, there
were no obvious markings and it's dark. The other end of the "crossing" I'm aggressively
greeted by the K mart version of Jake Gyllenhall -
"DID you see that RED light, sir?!"
"You just walked a red light mister"
"oh sorry, didn't see it" me looking bewildered as its not obvious "couldn't see and there's no markings, plus I don't know these streets"
"Where have you been tonight?!"
Well that ended that conversation, but I could see the hurt and vengeance in his eyes, as I
validly looked past him and crossed the road. Oh wait a minute is he and his cop buddies
following me?! Lord I'm in an area where I've been offered weed ﬁve times but these guys
think I'm gonna do something in a liquor store with empty pockets other than a passport
and $3! The cop intimidation continues as I walk to the fridges in the liquor store and the
same cop walks past me once and then when I move to another fridge he walks in front of
it again. We are playing bully and since I've not been bullied since I was at secondary
school, I swiftly open the fridge door before he goes for a third "I have big boy balls" strut
past me, I collect my beer ( 2 x 25oz beers for $2.40, love this country) and walk past him
to the counter, pay, turn round and wave goodbye to him. Brown Bear 1 - LAPD Muppet 0
I keep forgetting I'm in another country but I couldn't care less, UK black people don't fear
the police like they do here, one of my comic idols, Gina Yashere once said :-
We don't fear the police and the British accent confuses them, I had a cop follow me for 5
miles, and I had to pull HIM over. "uh ofﬁcer I can't help but notice you have been following me for 5 miles, what's the problem?" to which he replied "oh sorry ma'am I thought you was black."
Go Gina aka Tanya.
Well that's it's, I've had enough I'm leaving Hollywood!