So I am not the only one who noticed this. I feel better now.
I was right about the dirty looks thing and the weird vibe. By the way they are not conservative but they probably think they are..this place is indeed a fishbowl and them being insulated and shadowed by LA leads to this attitude probably. But outside of downtown (described by an older traveler the other day as "a drag") you can find some very cool people and there IS some sort of love here like nowhere else, perhaps left over from the hippie days.