Los Angeles car culture met collective joy on Saturday afternoon, as honking cars festooned with flags and homemade signs clogged Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood after Joe Biden defeated President Trump. People leaned out of sunroofs and passenger side windows, clanging pots and pans, flashing peace signs and raising fists.
For block after West Hollywood block, the cars were met by pedestrians dancing in the streets, and clusters of masked individuals gathering for impromptu parties.
At a red light, a driver for a shipping company exited his vehicle and danced all the way around the truck before hopping back in. Two masked women stood on a street corner pouring Champagne into paper cups.
Everyone appeared hungry for connection and communal celebration, with passersby and people in cars screaming and waving at each other.
“I see you!” a sign-holding man yelled, as he pointed at the people cheering from inside a BMW.
Nearby, a middle-aged man walked past a gas station holding a sign scrawled with a simple phrase: “There is hope.”
Sunset Boulevard in Silver Lake resembled a continuous, slow-moving victory parade, as motorists laid on their horns and passengers leaned out of car windows, waving American flags and beating saucepans, tambourines and cowbells.
"I didn’t breathe since Tuesday,” said Bernadette Colomine, who took a break from dancing on the side of the boulevard to speak with a reporter. “But now,” she said with an audible exhale, “it’s all over.”
Colomine, 62, a voice-over actress, said she felt both “anger and elation” that a woman had been elected vice president. Anger, she said, that it has taken this long; elation that the tide has seemingly turned on what she described as the Republican Party’s “war on women.”
“It’s so overdue,” Colomine said, “and at the same time, it’s unbelievable it has finally happened.”
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.