I had never been to LA. Most people from the east coast never have.
I always thought LA was some magical land of internet people and cool fashion and sunshine and social media kids who had dropped out of highschool to persue their youtube career.
Everyone in New York says LA sucks and everyone in LA hates New York.
Then again, i guess i still think of it like that. But atleast now I can say I've been there
It was the beginning of summer and we hadn't really gone anywhere in a little while. New York was getting hot and Johnny Serafina Byron and I wanted to go see the other side of things. LA is the alternative to NY for everyone in the industry. But, people in NY either love or hate the LA people and vice versa. We were bored and wanted to go.
We planned a quick gang trip over to California. We intended to stay for a week, it was right before I had to come home and pack for college.
Johnny Serafina Byron and I booked a flight. Serafina and Byron had to leave a bit early but Johnny and I stayed with our friend Brandon .
It wasn't until about a week before we had planned to go that Tina wanted to come. When she was in Boston i kept talking about LA and I had a feeling she would end up coming. I ended up getting her a flight and all was golden.
We flew from New York to LA.
It was a long flight but Johnny and I watched the clouds and the sky and the day turn to night. We got to LAX and met Tina outside. It was hot. Like muggy hot. "Well, this is LA I guess" I said as I swung my hoodie over my shoulder.
We threw our bags into the Uber and went downtown where our Air BNB was. Byron and Serafina already being there, the place was ours for a few days.
It was beautiful. Absolutely amazing. An incredible loft house that we had for a few days, right down town LA. Like what people dream of. We had a few rooms, nice couches, a cool kitchen, and best of all an amazing roof. It was nothing less than what we had dreamt of.
We spent our time in LA walking around and just seeing all of it.
Let me tell you, if you haven't been to LA which I bet most of you reading this have not, it's nothing like New York or Boston or anywhere over here on the East Coast. Everything is 30 minutes away. There's real palm trees lining the streets. It looks like GTA. If you've played GTA IV you'll understand. It's just like GTA. It's LA.
We all went to the Day n Night music festival out in the mountains in Los Angeles.
The photos for once kind of do the justice of how far out there it was. Two hour Uber ride from downtown, we got out in the middle of the desert in 95 degree heat and spent ten hours at this festival and damn it was worth every minute.
We listed to A$AP Rocky and got to shoot photos of Uzi Vert. We hungout in VIP and moshed as nighttime fell. It was incredible. It was my first music festival. The vibes were right. And it's rare that with five people in a crazy place that the vibes are perfectly right.
We partied at our place at night. We had people come over. Kylie Jenner's best friend came to hang out along with fifty other internet kids we could invite. Nights on the roof were incredible. The best way to end summer.
After the festival days, we packed up and said goodbye to our place for ever. We took a long Uber drive which most of us slept for. We woke up in Disney Land.
Johnny's parents hooked us up off their points in this two bed room in Disney.
Tina had never been to Disney before.
When I was a kid my grandmother and I used to go to Disney. She raised me teaching me that it's the happiest place on earth. Disney is so special to me
So for me and Tina to be there it was just so cool and pretty and i can't even describe how amazing the moments were. Maybe the photos will do the justice but i guess i'll leave this part blank so you can try to find the happiness that we found that night. The five best friends in the entire world. My best friends. Five people from all different places, all different backgrounds, all into clothes and happieness and seeing the world. All together. All as one. Under the castle with fire works and smiles. We stayed up all night knowing it would be the last time we would be together for a while.
Tina flew home after Disney and Serafina and Byron left shortly after. Fun is fun but life is something you need to get back to once in a while. Serafina had to leave for school a day or two later so I said my goodbyes to her in LA and I haven't seen her since.
Johnny and I had a few days together before our flight back to NY.
We ended up staying with Brandon and going out and shooting photos with him every day.
We got to mess around on Fairfax Ave. I think that was one of the best parts of the trip. Just being annoying on Fairfax.
If you grew up liking Odd Future then you know the importance of Fairfax. That's where the culture sprouted from. Tyler and all of them hanging out outside Supreme just being skate kids. I got to do that for two days. And it felt so right.
What else did we do. I'm thinking. Man i'm so mad at myself typing this right now. There's this thing I learned about myself and it's that if I don't write right after I do something, I'll never write as good about it later down the road and I got home from LA and was super tired but was going to write about it the night I got home but instead I went to some party and I regret it so much because I never got around to it until now.
Oh. Great part of the story. So there's this place called Round Two Hollywood. You can look at their Youtube channel HERE but we went there with Brandon to meet up with some people. John Ross and crew were just lingering around and Carti walked in to say hi a few minutes later. We had heard about this place called the "Gallery" from some kids. I was so intruiged. What the hell is the gallery I kept wondering.
We talked the Chris and Sean the guys who are incharge of the place and I explained myself and told him how i'm into fashion and all that. If you know me you know how important Supreme is to me. I can look at any Supreme shirt ever and tell you the year and season it came out instantly. I can tell a fake supreme piece off the bat within seconds. I know every collab, every piece, every video, every publication they've done. I love Supreme. I grew up on it. And if you know Supreme you know how rare and important some of the OG Box logo shirts are. I heard they had almost every single box logo in this gallery place.
Since Byron is the buyer for the biggest fashion store in Boston and we told that to the guys, they knew we weren't just trolling.
"You ready to be amazed?" he said as he laughed a bit to himself. He walked a storefront over to what seemed to be some place under construction. This is basically the coolest part of the entire trip right here. Behind the two locked glass doors was big paper covering it and the "For Lease" sign still up. "Oh word an empty store" most would say. He opens the door and tells us to go under the paper. We move it aside and my eyes open up.
This, my friends, was one of the coolest sights of my entire life.
The manager guy Chris laughed to himself as he watched me look like a kid in a candy factory. Seriously. That's the look that was on my face. Complete awe.
Boards. Hats. Shirts. Hoodies. Coats. Accessories. Everything. Every Fucking Thing.
From Supreme box logo shirts dating back to the 90's to Guess tees older than our parents. It was like in the Goonies movie when they go down and find the treasure.
Watch the videos of the store itself they're really cool. But the store is kind of small. The Gallery is the long room with everything on each side. If you ever get a chance to get into the gallery you'll understand the jaw dropping experience I went through.
Fuck. it was so cool. I wish I could have videotaped it. I'm sure there's videos of it. But there's a few photos in here that show it. And that guy Chris appreciated it so much. I could just tell how gratifying it was for him to see us in awe. He said that all the celeberties just go in there and shop and they aren't too amazed because to them clothes are just objects that they can buy so easily but for us it was like a closet i would die for.
I got a Guess striped shirt with a mock neck from 1991. I love that shit.
Also on Fairfax I got to get my "Supreme LA" cliché photo. You know. The one everyone grew up seeing on Tumblr. The soft toned "Supreme" sign with the palm tree in the side of the frame. That was important to me. If you were on tumblr as a kid you'll get what i'm talking about.
The rest of the trip was really cool. I'm so thankful we got to be with Brandon Sapp because he knows so many people in LA and even though he's like sixteen he's just a smart photo kid.
Brandon, Luca Fersko, Johnny and I went up into the valley mountains one night for sunset.
We would wake up early, eat at this house which felt like ours because Brandon's dad was always at work, and head out to see anything and everything.
The end of the trip consisted of a lot of hanging out. Johnny and I went to venice beach which was fun. It's kind of a tourist place. Johnny ended up knowing a bunch of people on the beach from parkour (he used to be into that stuff. that's how he met Hudson and I met him through hudson).
I'm almost forgetting one of the most remarkable sights of my life.
So on the last day I was in touch with my homie Carson Forbes who I knew from this old internet forum called ScooterResource. He ended up driving down with another friend Corey Vanlew. They had a car and came down for the night. They picked Johnny and I up and we cruised to In N Out. We wanted to do something fun on our last night. "Let's climb to the Hollywood sign" I said. "Fuck it, why not" they insisted.
Now, you might think this isn't hard. "Oh there has to be a path" you're imagining. No. Stop thinking that. Take that back. There's no such thing as a path any where NEAR that sing.
Thankfully, Corey knew where a bunch of back roads were by all the crazy rich celeberty houses up in some hidden hills. We drove back there and parked the car on some street. We walked to where we imagined a path would be and just looked straight up at this mountain full of sand and rocks and trees. "Well, no turning back now".
We walked, nearly hiked, this ginormous, steep hill. We had to go slow and make sure no one saw us. Sand filled our shoes as our cameras dangled from our necks, trying not to let the lenses hit the ground or rocks near us.
About 45 minutes of hiking went by and a bunch of close calls to death, but we made it to a flat spot at the top of the hill. We turned one way and saw all of Los Angeles from above, the flashing city and the glistening lights. The movement of millions of people, all looking to us like fireflies in the night.
Behind us were the letters. The word "HOLLYWOOD" spelled out on hundred foot tall wooden structures. The sign you see in movies. The sign I never thought my 18 year old self would be nearly next to.
We took some photos and caught out breath and talked about life above Los Angeles. The way down wasn't bad, it was almost like skiing but instead of snow it was sand in our shoes. The photo turned out breathtaking at least.
LA is a beautiful place.
But it's definitely not for everyone. If I didn't have all my internet friends it would have been hard to survive. And just know that the majority of the kids in LA are internet kids. It's not cut throat like New York. They don't have seasons. They just hangout all day every day all year long. A lot of the people we know don't attend high school because they don't need to. A lot of people think education is stupid. That's how people are. If you want to be a model or on TV or a youtube sensation, then high school (and college certainly) is not for you! There's a lot of unspoken rules about the internet world and I'm fine saying them here because no one on the internet world cares what I write in these blogs, but once you hit 200,000 followers you have the rights to drop out of school and maybe make an iTunes song or a bunch of Instagram videos and get #sp posts and do #ads for #companies and make your #money off of that. I would never let that stuff get to me because I've realized that when the internet world dies down, or when new people replace the already "cool" then it's going to be a shit show of a bunch of internet kids without degrees fighting for jobs in the real world. And let me tell you one thing, no place in New York cares how many followers you have. That's for certain. But all of these kids are wonderful and all the youtube people are real life funny and everyone's a good laugh. It's a unique world, let me tell you. Trust me on that one. If you aren't a "Public Figure" or a photographer or a model or a youtuber or a fashion blogger or a singer then you aren't being a teen in LA the right way. And if you think you belong in LA amongst these established kids who post selfies for a living, buy a one way ticket and let me know how it goes a few weeks after landing at LAX. Everyone wants to dress nice. Everyone wants to be popping online. Everyone wants to make it. Everyone wants to be someone. Everyone wants to be LA.
It's a beautiful place though. Great place to visit. Great place to fall in love. I don't know. Go there some time.
Overall, great trip. Good times. Lots of smiles and laughs. I got to be with Tina. We all got to go to Disney. I saw the best collection of Supreme pieces of all time. I got to sit in the sun before heading home. We got to have a giant party on our roof. I got to spend time with my friends and enjoy the world. For what it is.