Leucadia would be a very cool place, if only more of the women decided to shave their armpits.
Saturday afternoon at Lou's Records is like a three-day Phish festival, except instead of swirling Indian skirts, the gals prefer black wife-beaters and a Patti Smith attitude.
Shaving habits aside, Leucadia is a little touch of funky So Cal hip in the midst of the ever-spreading suburbia. It's as if the old eucalyptus trees lining Highway 101 provide protection, a barrier to the outside world, as well as shade to grow really good pot plants.
Many members of the black t-shirt set know Leucadia only as home to Lou's, which years ago escaped the cold formality and uptight downtown Encinitas poobahs by moving to Leucadia's southern border. In Leucadia, the seekers of excellent tunes find one of the last true hideouts of the California surf set, a neighborhood where 35-year-old businessmen use skateboards for primary transportation and school is out when the surf's up.
It's still known fondly as "'Lude-cadia," even by the mothers and fathers of growing families who prefer Leucadia to the stale cement of North County's vast ocean of Vista-Carmel-Del-Mar-el-Suiza tract developments. As the surrounding hills turn into fortresses of fake Mediterranean condos, Leucadia has remained true to its roots, sleazy motels and all.
But now Lude-cadia is being called Lewd-cadia, and storms of angry soccer moms are marching in the street.
The source of the holocaust is, of course, a bookstore-F Street, a nasty little shop that deals in adult videos. F Street operates a chain throughout San Diego County, where good and righteous folk decry their presence, except on Saturday night when Mom needs a little lube and there's a two-for-one rental deal on "The Anal Girls of Cancun."
Everywhere F Street goes, protests and threats of moral condemnation follow, and then F Street stays open 24 hours in order to better service all the locals who don't mind a little porn after supper.
Leucadia has always been about letting it all hang out, especially when a kegger is in full swing. But the opening of an F Street has forced the locals to reevaluate their attitude toward freedom, especially now that it means you don't have to travel to Oceanside to pick up a little smut.
For the 50 or so folks who have been raising heck, protesting and screaming at their elected officials, the arrival of F Street is a good sign that the heathens have been roasting a few too many goats and its time to put up the gates and start a few bonfires of their own.
They rained condemnation and fury upon the city, convinced that Leucadia would soon turn into a hedonistic hellhole of panting, sweaty, Jasmine-oiled sex fiends.
Apparently these folks haven't been spending much quality time around Grandview Avenue on Saturday night, or they might realize that downtown Leucadia isn't exactly Bible Camp. When the local cops are short on their quota of prostitution or drug busts, they know they can always swing by north Leucadia on their way to the donut shop.
While no one is thrilled to have F Street come to town, other communities have found that F Street isn't exactly a sin magnet. At least that's what the North County Times discovered when it asked business owners in Escondido, a steaming volcano of sexual energy, what they thought of their neighborhood F Street.
"As a Christian, I don't agree with some of the things there," coin store owner Ray Ellis told the newspaper, echoing the comments of others. "But they don't bother me and I don't bother them."
But in Leucadia, the good and sterile knee-jerk reactionaries have decided that F Street is the sleaze too far, crossing the line that must not be crossed. So they have screamed and cried in protest, demanding action.
But, alas, Leucadia, as an entity, no longer exists. It was incorporated as part of the city of Encinitas many years ago, which gives it no greater voice in the city and no more personal identity than, say, Cardiff.
In Encinitas, Leucadians find themselves under the thumb of the big thinkers in old downtown Encinitas, whose idea of a wacky good-time street fair is a row of booths hawking new developments in water softeners.
Faced with the decay of the town's mortal soul, the poobahs have enacted ordinances and hired lawyers to keep the streets of Leucadia safe for the winos and homeless skate rats.
But now F Street and its lawyers are embedded, and city officials know they have to tread carefully in their effort to boot the porn peddlers out of town.
Many months of legal actions and lofty debate is expected, which suggests that the city might want to consider an alternative approach. Maybe they should just leave F Street alone. If no one wants an adult bookstore in the neighborhood, it will simply go away, a victim of the pureness of Leucadians.
But if the store survives, it will be fairly strong evidence that a good chunk of their friends and neighbors really don't mind the opportunity to conveniently rent a good multi-angle gangbang DVD on a Saturday night.