29 Sure Signs You Live In Long Beach, California

The City of Long Beach is its own magical microcosm. It’s not Los Angeles. It’s not Orange County. It’s the best of both worlds, centrally located between the two.

If you’re a Long Beach resident, you’ve immersed yourself in decent music and even better wine. You love indie films at the Art Theatre and riding your bike on the beach trail. You’re adept at finding a classic cocktail at an unpretentious bar. You’re an environmentalist and a proponent of locally grown produce. You’ve used Lyft for two-mile trips. You have “driveway envy” and regularly park a mile from your house, but relish the quarter-an-hour parking in Belmont Shore. You live peacefully among walled-in crickets and termite dust. You’re a happy hour connoisseur and still haven’t hit up every worthy spot in town. You’ve learned to tune out home remodel construction noise (sometimes), and you cherish silence when you have it.

As a Long Beach local, you know you’re paying less rent than your OC and LA counterparts, but shhh, don’t tell anyone. It’s a secret. Here are other LBC tidbits that’ll make you nod your head if you live here too:

1. You know all the cute hipsters who sell the sweetest grapefruits and tangiest homemade pickles at the farmers market.

...and you’ve never eaten so many grapefruits and pickles in your life.

2. You walk past 100 Zen millennials practicing yoga on the cliff overlooking the ocean twice a week, and every time, you think, “I’m going to do that soon.”

You never do.

3. You don’t flinch at the sight of squirrels the size of tabbies and possums the size of golden retrievers.

They roam the hood.

4. You never visit the Queen Mary, unless it's for Dark Harbor on Halloween or Ink-N-Iron in June.

...but you see it docked across the harbor all the time.

5. You know to keep your shoes on at the beach to avoid stepping on needles.

The epic sunsets four blocks from your house make it all worthwhile.

6. You're really used to hearing police helicopters circling overhead.

They don't faze you anymore.

7. You’ve ridden your bike downtown to see free daytime concerts inside Fingerprints record store.

...and have chilled at Berlin with a beverage beforehand.

8. You avoid LAX in favor of the Long Beach Airport whenever possible.

...because it’s the most convenient airport in the world.

9. You’ve played Drag Queen Bingo.

You came in second at your cousin’s wedding.

10. You’ve watched Sixteen Candles and Jaws on the beach with a few hundred other people.

It’s mostly an excuse to drink cabernet from plastic cups outdoors.

11. You avoid the over-popular Hollywood Forever Cemetery movie screenings in favor of the Sunnyside Cemetery.

...despite having to sit on both an anthill and a grave marker.

12. You know the glory that is Congregation tater tots, Beachwood BBQ fried green tomatoes, and Open Sesame spicy hummus.

The foodie possibilities are endless here.

13. You realize that the closest you’re going to get to Ireland without getting on a plane is The Auld Dubliner.

You can’t beat legit Old Fashioneds and fish and chips.

14. You’ve eaten your weight in chocolate at the Chocolate Festival on 2nd Street.

And don’t forget the abundant apps during Stroll and Savor.

15. You feel special knowing you can order Cocoreno’s authentic Mexican food inside the Reno Room next door.

I recommend the mushroom quesadilla.

16. You’ve had to ask for the restroom key at Broadway Cocktail Lounge during karaoke.

...because it’s locked to prevent sexual escapades.

17. You’ve ordered the “$3 red” at 4th Street Vine on numerous Thursday nights.

Because it’s only $3, and it’s a cool hangout, man.

18. You’ve seen some of your favorite bands play at Alex’s Bar.

...and you tell every first-timer, “They filmed True Blood here.”

19. You can’t drive past the Port of Los Angeles without thinking Dexter has a kill room set up in one of the shipping containers.

...and you know where Dexter and Rita’s house is.

20. You’ve Instagrammed your burger and fries at one of three In-n-Outs to make your out-of-state friends jealous.

It works.

21. You realize the Prospector steakhouse’s Album Attack was the music industry’s best kept secret.

Where local musicians played famous albums better than the original bands. The bartender killed it as Courtney Love.

22. You avoid downtown during the Toyota Grand Prix.

You're not paying $25 for parking. Plus, the streets are overrun with car racing fans.

23. You have at least four remarkable coffeehouses within walking distance from your front door.

Portfolio usually wins.

24. You never forget your reusable bags at the grocery store.

25. ... And are appalled when your oblivious neighbor over-waters his giant tree.

Dude, there’s a drought.

26. You know you have to spend at least $200 on Halloween candy or you’ll run out by 7:30.

Turning out the lights on trick-or-treaters is just plain sad.

27. You thought the Internet Cat Video Festival at the Federal Underground was hilarious.

Even if you hate cats.

28. You know the Long Beach Pride Parade means no residential parking, excessive day drinking, and lots of fun.

Thankfully, you already own a rainbow flag.

29. And Long Beach pride in general?

It certainly isn't hard to have plenty of that.

Images: Proper's Pickle, The Q Speaks, Chelsey Drysdale, Donna Drysdale, Eyad Abutaha /Flickr; The Prospector Long Beach