Last week I went to an improv show at UCB called “Only in LA” where they ask the audience for tidbits about their “only in LA” experiences and do a show based off the best suggestion. The thing about the comedy scene in LA is that almost no one is actually from LA so most of the suggestions were like “someone said something racist to me!” “this crazy thing happened to me while I was pumping my own gas!” and “I had a conversation with a homeless person.” Part of me wanted to be like “screw you, this is my citayy” but the other part of me had the existential thought that I might not know what an “only in LA” experience is because it’s pretty much all I’ve ever known.
To me, LA is my high school econ teacher giving us really specific life advice like “if the police are trying to pull you over because of your skin color, make sure to pull over in a gas station because gas stations have cameras and the police aren’t going to mess with you there.” To be fair, this is probably pretty solid life advice. Live by it. It’s also reading Animal Farm in 11th grade and having the teacher ask the class “Hey, you guys have seen pigs right?” and then go on and on about what pigs are like without anyone chiming in and saying “eff you, we have a county fair.”
Honestly, those are probably just stories I collected living in an urban area and not even LA stories. Today I finally got my LA story that I know is an LA story and I am super stoked about it. I found out that my friend’s dad co-wrote and directed one of my favorite ever cult movies — Bubba Ho-Tep. You have no idea how happy this makes me.
28 thoughts on “Los Angeles”
But how was the show?
it was pretty good, not great, but good! my UCB 101 teacher was in it, which was cool. I haven’t seen a UCB show in awhile so the style was refreshing after a lot of straight up IO Harolds.
You are so right about no one being from LA. I went to college in Burbank and discovered only like 5 people were actually from LA. All us Valley kids are everywhere though 🙂
valley for life. Though, I am very very happy to be living on the westside right now.
Burning bodies in dumpsters. A dead lady in her Cadillac on Hazeltine. A guy trying to run over another guy with his pick-up while we took the kids out for ice cream.
LA is great! We lived there for 10 years. I haven’t seen those things anywhere else. Wanna see Bubba Ho-tep now.
you NEED to watch Bubba Ho-tep
yeah, i get pissed off at people who’ve prolly never set foot in my home town NYC badmouth it as “unfriendly” and “cold” and “you’ll get mugged ” etc. because of the bad vibes they give off themselves they prolly WOULD have that experience wherever they go. continue…
Such a great movie, I recommend it to everyone but they think I am making it up when I give them a quick plot synopsis.
I have the same problem when I describe The Ruling Class
I have visited LA a few times, and I love it. A totally different world for me. Once I was in for a friend’s wedding, and the bridal party was going for mani/pedi’s, and we passed a shiny gold genie shoe lying in the middle of the road. And no one else batted an eye. That was my “only in LA” experience.
It IS really cool to find out that you know someone who wrote/directed a movie you love. The world really is a small place.
it’s so small/weird. I’ve lived in LA for a very long time and I have never seen a shiny gold genie shoe in the middle of the street. I think you’re just lucky.
Love improv shows. Were they funny, in the end?
Hail to the king, baby.
That’s funny. I live on the east coast. Actually lived in northern New Jersey for a couple of years. No one comes from New Jersey. Everyone is a transient because of jobs either in northern Jersey or NYC. It must be like that in CA.
it is! but it probably sucks way less because we aren’t in New Jersey
Great post – interesting how many of those “unique” experiences often occur other places too. Authentic / “only in” are getting harder and harder to come by – which makes them all the funnier once you find them. Glad you found something for your challenge. Staying tuned for more.
I think it’s something I am going to try to be hyper aware of
So high school in LA really was like the scenes in Orange County eh? Well that makes my heart sing!
I forgot about that movie, but kinda, yeah
I was in LA once to cover some Awards show, and to me walking around in LA really feels like walking around in movie land. It’s like everyone is talking about auditioning for a role, writing a screenplay, or representing some new talent.
But I do like your advice about pulling over in a gas station. I’d never have thought of that, and it does make a lot of sense.
it is totally solid advice
My first introduction to LA was some 30 years ago. A VERY friendly he-man pulled over while I was out walking with my infant daughter. He smiled broadly and winked. I smiled broadly back. Then he flashed me….Eeeeeuuuuw!
speaking of BHT, Elvis will be 77 in January.
so excited to have a fried twinkie party
haha you have an interesting way of writing.
all my favorite writers do, so I try to emulate that school of writing
I don’t know LA very well, but I’ve lived in New York long enough to hear the “Only In New York! LOL” stories from tourists and such, so I can imagine how dull some of those stories must have been.