Top Ten Ways You Know You’re Becoming A Californian

Grandma: You know, RB, you’ve grown up a lot since you moved to San Francisco. You make decisions by yourself, you don’t completely freak out every time something goes wrong.
Me: I know, I’m incredibly mature.
Grandma: Well, let’s not go overboard, dear. “Incredibly mature?” No, not yet.

Regardless of immaturity, I am coming up on 6 months in San Francisco, and I think I have changed a lot. Some of the changes have been personal, and some of them are simply a matter of slowly shedding layers of New York and settling into a Bay Area mentality.

In no particular order, here are —

The Top Ten Ways You Know You’re Becoming A Californian

1o. You’re concerned that Top Ten Lists make other numbers like 8,9 and 11 feel disenfranchised, so you’re starting a petition for Prop 8.911.
9. You think tortilla chips and salsa are their own food group.
8. The furniture in your room consists of the dresser and table that came with it and a futon you bought off the neighbors on the day you moved in. You have lived like this for 3 months and made no effort to change anything.
7. To deal with the fact that your futon is totally uncomfortable, you go to your friends’ house on Saturdays and do a circuit of mini-power naps in all of their beds. They told you this is fine with them, and you think it’s a great solution.
6. You saw a fixed gear bike with the handle bars flipped up and thought, “wow, that is super rad!” and didn’t look down on yourself for being brain-dead enough to use the words “super” and “rad” in the same sentence.
5. Public transportation is something you will only consider using in case of absolute emergency (i.e the breaks on your bike are broken AND it’s raining.)
4. When your Starbucks barista tells you that her life is in crisis and asks if you can meet up on Saturday to discuss it, you write down your number and do not even remember that “this would never happen in New York” until your mother reminds you.
3. You’ve replaced “like” the verb with the far more sophisticated “all” the verb: And I was all, “wow, we’re at number three!”
2. You run into some guy you see at Yoga class a lot on the street. He tells you he’s drinking kombucha he brewed himself and asks if you’d like to try some. Instead of asking, “do you have any diseases?” you say, “wow, this is a lot lighter tasting than the bottled stuff!”
1. You were at a bar on Saturday night screaming, “let’s go Giants!” and you were not watching a football game.


3 thoughts on “Top Ten Ways You Know You’re Becoming A Californian

  1. A great post.

    #10 This is so creative!

    #7 I am concerned about your futon and its being uncomfortable (your circuit of power naps in other beds just cracked me up) because I slept on queen-size futons for 15 years and loved mine. Ten of those years were right on the floor, and then on tatami mats, and then I finally got an actual futon bed frame. I had three in succession during that time. Mine came from stores in Portland and were so great. I felt like I had really sold out when Michael and I got our queen-size pillow-top mattress about five years ago. I love it now….

    #5 I am impressed. That is such a healthy lifestyle.

    #4 That is wonderful.

    #3 I know. I am all “What's with the people who use like as a verb?


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