There are two things that no Angelino leaves home without. One is their favourite brand of water, and believe me there are many brands to choose from. The other is an appointment with their therapist.
First though, an aside on water: I mean, for some thing that has no colour and no taste, it’s got its own aisle in every single supermarket you go to. And there is always a search for the newest latest water. My water is cooler than yours.
My favourite one is this new brand that isn’t water, it’s “moisture”. And it’s straight from the heart of the earth, untouched by human hands. An odd claim really. I mean, are the other brands run off from bathtubs?
Fiji Water has a “soft mouth” feel. And Smart water is using a naked Jennifer Aniston to sell itself. I get that beers all want to differentiate themselves, but you can’t turn on a tap in your house and have beer flow out. Unless you’re Irish maybe.
So, clutching a vessel of their chosen badged moisture, the first thing an Angelino will tell you is what kind of therapy they’re in.
And they are all in some kind of therapy. No really, all of them. When I lived in South Africa I found, to my horror, that every single person in the agency had a gun on them except for me. Therapy is the new gun club of which I find myself not a member.
I’ve heard of scream therapy, guided group therapy, unguided group therapy, individual therapy, couple therapy, friend therapy, therapy therapy…more flavours than a Baskin and Robbins. And everyone has at least one scoop if not two. Rich people, penniless people all worship at the high altar of the therapist.
The rest of the world loves to makes jokes about Americans and their love of the couch where they can talk about their mothers. But here’s an interesting fact that I didn’t know till I arrived.
Therapists are used in the place of good friends. For instance, in Australia, when we are down in the dumps, going through bad times etc, we turn to our friends and hash it out with them. This is what great friendships are built on where I come from.
Here, no one would dare burden their friends with such a duty. This is where the therapist steps in. So they’re not all so loony as I thought, just in need of an ear to talk to.
However, if I was in charge of Homeland Security, I’d flag this as a future worry. If aliens wanted to secretly overtake America, all they would have to do is bodysnatch all the therapists and they would soon have the population in their three-fingered hands.
Stay here long enough and you begin to think that maybe you should be having a bit of therapy yourself. LA is a tough town and, well, everyone I know is doing it.
Then a friend said the most wonderful thing. “ Karl, I can’t believe how self-realised you are and you’ve never done any therapy, it’s amazing.”
That, dear reader, is the highest compliment you can pay someone in LA. Now if I could just get some help with my bottled water addiction.