Take Two®

News and culture through the lens of Southern California. Hosted by A Martínez

No Place Like LA: Melissa, and the expensive $250 lesson

by Leo Duran | Take Two®

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KPCC listener Melissa Afable poses in front of the downtown LA skyline from the Griffith Observatory. Melissa Afable

No Place Like LA is our series that asks transplants and immigrants to LA, "When was the moment you felt that Los Angeles was truly home?"


I was mostly raised in San Bernardino. Even though I was raised in Southern California, I never really felt much like an Angeleno.

In 2013, I was over a year into my job in downtown LA. I would take public transportation to get in from San Bernardino County.

This one time I was crossing 7th and Figueroa right there in downtown LA, right there in front of the Metro station.

I had seven seconds to spare in the crosswalk countdown timer.

I book it, and I make it. No big deal. I've done it plenty of other times.

But this time, there happened to be an LAPD officer.

He waived me over and he told me that what I did was just illegal. That it was a pedestrian jaywalking ticket he'd have to issue me. 

It was over $250! There was no way to fight it. It was incredible.

I had never really felt like an Angeleno until then. 

All of the stereotypes that people have of L.A. with the crazy traffic and crazy tickets, I mean, yeah, it finally happened to me – I got a pedestrian ticket and it was this outrageous amount.

It was one of those "Only in L.A." moments, and now I wear it like a badge of honor!

Tell us your own story about that time you truly felt at home in Los Angeles.

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