Ten Reasons It's Better to Live in Miami Than Los Angeles

It's really not even that great of a sign.
It's really not even that great of a sign.
Photo by Sörn | WikiCommons

In a tradition documented in the very first line of Lou Reed's "Walk on the Wild Side" (Holly came from Miami, F-L-A), for years Miami's creative and restless young would head to New York. In return, Miami would get New York's retirees.

This population transaction worked fine for decades, but recently a West Coast interloper has become a more prominent destination for Miami's expats. Yes, nowadays you're just as likely to hear about Miamians hightailing it to Los Angeles as you are to hear about locals heading to New York, and not just people who have convinced themselves they'll be silver-screen icons. The trend hit a fever pitch in 2012 when a group of Miami artists, including beloved collective FriendsWithYou, departed for L.A., and it hasn't slowed since.

Not to rain on L.A.'s parade the day after its biggest event of the year, but let's remember that life in Tinsel Town isn't really all that much better than life in the Magic City.

Not a sight you'll ever see in South Florida.
Not a sight you'll ever see in South Florida.
Photo by Gary B. Edstrom | WikiCommons

1. Hurricanes Are Generally Preferable to Earthquakes

Though hurricane season in Miami has been quiet for the past nine years, typically major hurricanes tend to affect South Florida more often than major earthquakes slam Los Angeles (though small-scale quakes hit L.A. so often there's an automated Twitter feed dedicated to tracking them). Once they hit, hurricanes can be at least a daylong affair, while an earthquake gets its business out of the way quickly.

But here's the main reason canes are preferable to quakes: meteorology. You'll know at least a week in an advance that a hurricane could hit Miami, whereas earthquakes just happen suddenly and without warning. So you'll never know where you'll be if the long-predicted "Big One" hits Los Angeles.

2. Traffic Is Worse in L.A.

If you can't deal with being stuck on the Palmetto during peak commute time or hate when the MacArthur is backed up, L.A. is not for you. Sure, study after study has confirmed Miami has certifiably bad traffic, but just about every single one of those studies crowns Los Angeles as the city with the worst traffic in the United States.

3. Bars Close at 2 a.m. There

Like every other city in California, last call in L.A. is at 2 a.m. Meanwhile, some clubs in Miami are just getting going at that time. Admit it, Miamians, even if you're not regularly closing down the club at 5 a.m., you'd at least like to have the option. Seriously, something about 2 a.m. just seems so prudish. Even Tampa lets its bars stay open until 3.

Breathtaking
Breathtaking
Photo: Hydrogen Iodide | WikiCommons

4. Smog and Air Pollution

According to the American Lung Association's 2014 "State of the Air" rankings, Los Angeles ranks number one in ozone pollution, third in year-round particle pollution, and fourth in short-term particle pollution. The rest of the cities in the top five in all of those categories are also in California.

Los Angeles County also received an F on its air quality report card. Miami, meanwhile, sat far away from the most polluted cities and got a solid B on its air quality report card.

5. Miami's Beaches Are Better

And the only people who could objectively argue with that point are surfers. That's because the water at L.A. beaches is notoriously chilly and often choppy. So unless you want to paddle out in a wetsuit, L.A. beaches are only as good as their sand. In Miami, though, you can get a full beach experience, including comfortably wading in the water as long as you want.



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