Author: Teresa

The Los Angeles Culture

The Los Angeles Culture

Will Smith just gave the Lakers a lesson on ‘togetherness’ and ‘gratitude’

Last month, in a series of stories about a group of Lakers’ friends in the L.A. area, I mentioned that we talked for hours about the ‘unhealthy culture’ of Los Angeles.

It made me laugh in the L.A. Times and on ESPN LA, but the talk about “Los Angeles culture” in general has taken a bit of a nosedive recently; the L.A. Times’ own Michael Holley has called out some of Los Angeles’ finest talent in some choice words. (Not exactly the best of press for a city with one of the richest sports cultures on the planet.) One story, in particular, had me wondering: Why is it that we’re so quick to label each other “losers”?

Smith responded to my column with this, an excellent essay on the subject, and it really helped put things in perspective. Now, I’m not saying there aren’t some problems in our city; there are plenty of big ones. But it seems that there’s an assumption that there’s something we’re doing wrong.

Sure, there are some bad people out there (though I’m not sure I can name one that anyone’s written about who’s not on a Lakers team or two) or bad things at some Lakers events (though I don’t even know what those things are). But there’s also a lot of good in L.A. that’s ignored. And to ignore that is to, well, just ignore it.

This is an article about being together, and it really drives home my point on why we should be proud of this city.

Last season, L.A. took a big step forward when they built the Staples Center, an event that Smith wrote about here and here. That stadium will be a massive boost for the Lakers, who play in a building that’s smaller than the Rose Garden (even though the Garden has a much bigger seating capacity).

But Smith doesn’t just talk about building the stadium here; he also talks about being together, which is something that you don’t see in sports, a lot of which are about individuals and teams. And here’s his quote:

“It’s one of the most important lessons I’ve ever learned. It’s about being an individual. It’s about the fact that you have to be yourself and make an individual decision about why

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