Episode 25: Living The L.A. Cliche!

I bet you, if you were to blindfold me, drop me off on a random cross street anywhere in the city of Los Angeles, I would know my way back home. I can tell you what’s North, South, East and West, I drink smoothies with chia seeds, I’m vegan on the weekdays but eat In & Out on the weekends, I lose my cool when I have to wait five minutes at the dispensary, (Why am I waiting for my weed?) I know where you can get the best Korean BBQ at 2am.

I don’t work a 9-5, rain is catastrophic, the first sip of a Pink Lady Apple Kombucha after Soul Cycle is everything, I teach at a high end Yoga Studio, a Khardashian showing up to practice is totally normal, I have yogi friends that can literally name drop famous Monks… (Your friends can’t do that), I don’t go to The Valley, I haven’t been to an After Hours yet but I get the invites and that my friends makes me an L.A. Cliche!

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Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not a total Hollywoodian… I still eat Gluten, I’m not kissing dogs in the mouth, I do however, finally feel at home. It’s been three years. No one can tell me I didn’t pave my way and haven’t paid my dues. Told all my homies to move out here now they’re living their best lives too. A raise at my Yoga job, a new position at a trendy Sports Therapy studio DTLA, promoted to teach more classes, creating music and content that is memorable and narrative changing. I knew making this move wouldn’t be easy but I knew it was right.

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Take a moment right now… Yup…right now. Just stop. Think about how traumatizing it would be for YOU to prematurely quit your job, move 3000 miles away from everything and everyone you’ve ever known to do something that has little to no chance of being a success. Like, all I had was faith and one spec script.

Watching my friends get married and have babies via Instagram sucks, my mom telling me to move back home makes me frown, Not being with the person I love is annoying.

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All the “How to make it in L.A. blogs” and these thoughts, this mirage of I need to be this comedy writer or else the world will explode mentality gave me a much needed smack in my face. I had a picture of what my life in L.A. would be like and it’s no where near what I imagined. It’s actually better. It keeps getting better, with every Yoga class I teach, every new creative I meet, every taco I eat, with every new strain grown, I am here for it all.

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I finally have an answer to what success is. The question that has been aching and haunting my brain for over a decade. Success isn’t about the money, or Childish Gambino noticing me, success is uncovering the essence to my soul. Success is seeking the HARD, hard stuff and still crushing it. This Summer feels like a jolt of great energy, no enemies, work is fulfilling, I already have next month’s rent! It feels good to feel nervous and excited about all the things to come, even though I have no fuckin’ idea what’s coming.

Success is uncovering the essence to your soul.

Stay Tuned.

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Episode 24: Reefer Madness!

Whether you know me personally or know me through reading this blog, I’m most likely the biggest Pothead you know! I’ve been a proud member of the cannabis community since I smelled it through the vents of my college roommates bedroom. It was then I knew this magic plant, an act of God mixed with science and nature was going to significantly change my life forever and it did. I love Marijuana. Not just for its healing properties, for its mental properties or for the way it brings people together, I love weed because it forces me to be at ease, it allows me to open my inner most pathways to a higher self. Weed is cool. Without it life is great, with it life is better.

So there’s a National Marijuana Day aka 420. Why wouldn’t there be? It makes more sense than National Cheese day or National Lima Bean Day which is also disrespectfully on the same day as 420…(Who the fuck eats Lima Beans?)

The last five years I’ve celebrated 420… It’s been a blast. I always take a day off work, there’s seemingly always an abundance of greenery in my presence. I’m surrounded by friends and edibles. 420 Day is a joyous occasion...I never experienced a bad one. Until…

April 20th, 2019…“It was a day that will live in infamy”. Not only did I miss one of my favorite rappers concert, the 4/20 party that was suppose to be this epic weed turn up turned out to be one of those, I’m an Instagram influencer, watch me not dance parties. Seriously, the DJ played Juvenile “Back that Ass up” No one danced! The bouncer was a complete douche. He said I had too much weed, made me roll all of it up before entering the party. In the midst of trying to roll FIVE GRAMS of weed, I dropped a big ass nug that is lost forever on the L.A. streets, or in the hands of a L.A hobo.. What does this mean, am I getting too old for this, do I have bad 4/20 karma for all the times I ash my blunt on people’s living room floors?

How could a day that’s usually perfect turn into Reefer Madness? Luckily I ended the night with friends, vegan snacks and amazing hosts. Even still the night ended before 10:00pm. I was tired, high and disappointed.

As I reflect back on this year’s 4/20 my realization is…

Putting all my energy into making this one day ultra special instead of making all my days ultra special speaks volumes. I bet if I put half the effort into comedy writing as I did trying to make 4/20 a spectacular day ya’ll would be sayin’ who is Issa Rae?

My 3 year anniversary in L.A. is in a couple weeks. I actually made it three years in L.A, with my head still on my head. Yes, I went through some shit, a lot of shit, a whole lotta shit.. I’m still here, no babies, no diseases, no bad attitude, mad confidence, single, a hot yoga body, I’m making music, writing and evolving into the Sailor Moon Christina I always knew I would become. Performing stand-up comedy this week, so wish me luck. I’m scared af… But there’s no better feeling than telling jokes on stage. I mean better feelings exist for sure but I’m unwillingly celibate. So stand up will have to due for now!

Stay Tuned.

Episode 23-Sayin’ Goodbye to Hollywood.

Five… Five is the different number of blog entries I wrote before dropping this one. As I reflect on the last two months it hit me, nothing is going on. I mean, don’t get me wrong things are happening but nothing is “happening” I’m not struggling financially, I love my job, teaching has been uncontrollably amazing af, there’s no dude in my life annoying tf out of me, I’m getting a cat, (no typo) my friends are the most captivating humans I ever encountered, seriously, my roommate won an Oscar. My mom is in love.

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Nothing is happening, which is great… I guess…I just figured people want to read an L.A. adventure and all I got is life is living in the present. All we have are memories anyway…but don’t forget, what you have…it’s in you, once it’s in you no one can take that away. Yoga, friends, Nipsey and Childish Gambino have taught me these things. After Nipsey Hussle’s passing, I thought to myself now here’s a young man. Beautiful, strong and Black. Helping the community, giving back, taking ownership of his life, providing for his family. In the next moment he’s gone, dead from our world, probably President in the next one though. We’ll all be gone one day. So what happens then? What are you doing now to experience what this life has to offer and how are you making a difference while creating a legacy?

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My time is almost up in Los Angeles. I’m in love with this city don’t get me wrong…There’s more cities I must see. Quite honestly, cities across this ocean I have yet to see have been whispering my name in their native tongue. I have the feels…The same feeling from living in New York right before I booked my one way ticket to L.A. almost three years ago! Can you believe it? I Love L.A. I literally created a life for myself out here from scratch. I’m a Yoga instructor, a writer, a creator a lover and a believer in things that seem impossible. I Love L.A. The beach is my backyard, I’ve climbed hills and mountains, I’ve soul cycled, juiced, fallen madly in love, fallen completely out of love, completed 300 hours of teacher training studying a practice I truly believe in, I Love L.A., I’ve seen Skid Row, I’ve seen black people flourish before my eyes, the traffic is a serious thing, In&Out’s fries suck, I’ve smoked the loudest of the most loudest strains of ganja, I still haven’t met Childish Gambino. I love L.A. This is my home.

I’ll come back and I’m not leaving tomorrow. Not with 4/20 around the corner! I just see a unique life for myself I see a way to help others using my gifts, telling my truths. I must see the world though, plus this Country has lost its damn mind, a hut in Jamaica for a few months sounds exquisite if I’m just being honest. While I’m still on American soil, I plan on putting my best efforts to the front line. I hope you stay tuned.

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Episode 20- A Hippie’s Holidaze

Its Holiday season! Bring out the hoodies, shorts and jean jackets, I might have to dare I say wear socks with my shoes now. The holidays in L.A., pretty non-existent to say the least. The rain replaces snow, its 65+ degrees, Its way too hot for one of those Ugly Sweater parties.

Yet,  holiday season brings me joy. Like, Thanksgiving what a fucked up holiday to celebrate but having three plates of food with no care in the world. Sorry Indians! (not sorry) This year I celebrated what most transplanted, stranded, Los Angeles residents celebrate. “Friendsgiving” Well in our case “Danksgiving” (Yes it’s exactly what you think it is) with my closest homies.  I thought my friendships were deteriorating after we didn’t get the dream house I wanted. At the end of the night… I love these Negros, regardless if we agree or not, these people I met almost a decade ago are still here, supporting and uplifting my crazy dreams. Plus as cool as it would’ve been to live with my Frat brothers. They fart a lot more often than the average male. Sports, there’s just so much sport watching…I can’t deal…But dammit I would be trifalin’ af if I wasn’t grateful. They let me stay with them these last couple months. I wear wigs, I get a period, I’m going through a break up and these guys were so nice and tolerant of all that.  Why do they like me?

So let’s revisit that last blog post. Was that Emo or what? I went pretty dark. I was saying stuff like…

I feel so stuck,  everything is falling a part. My friendships, my relationship. The thought of writing something creative makes me cringe now. How do I get back?”

It was pinned up inside me and I had to type it out. I won’t apologize for my vulnerability either.

I’ve been internally kicking and screaming because I’m trying to find some sort of break or easy way out of what ultimately are Karmic reactions to a continuous cycle I’ve subjected myself to. Basically. I’m tired of feeling bad for myself, making up excuses, It’s time to embark on this L.A. journey I was eagerly ready for when I first moved here. With opportunities and blessings literally smacking me in the face, I must keep pushing forward.

A new job, moving in to an amazing home with my closest friend, teaching more Yoga classes, embarking on my first 200 hour Teacher Training, starting my Podcast back up and recording music, I’m diving in to all my side passions until I can get rid of this *whispers* writers block.. I still feel like something is missing.  Why do I always think I need more? How am I not content yet? Then it hit me. Why I feel this emptiness within me. I must deal with this, I must face the truth that I might not ever meet Childish Gambino, let alone watch him  perform live ever again. I know I missed an amazing last concert.  I know now what it feels like to live life with regret.

Still, though. I’m in a much better place than the last couple months. This New Year will be interesting. I’m ready for it all.

 

Stay Tuned and Happy Holidays!

 

 

Episode 17- Lyft, Loud & Yoga.

Another summer in Los Angeles. Lately, it’s been hot as the Devil’s butthole. I love it, however Some L.A. residents aren’t taking it so well. Can the heat control your sanity?Like, it wasn’t pleasing to my eyes to see a grown woman laying on the streets of Downtown L.A. butt ass naked, or the racist outburst from the 7-11 clerks yelling that  “All black people are the same” because a black dude stole a soda, let us not forget the pile of dog shit I accidentally stepped into barefoot…All this happened in a matter of one week by the way.  I’ve been living in Los Angeles for two years and still, I am surprised by my life happenings.

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After months of being financially disabled, missing my closest friends weddings and baby showers, dodging my landlord, I’m actually making strides back to the lit Christina…the one who always had big dreams with ambition and faith to make them happen. I quit my 9-5 over a year ago. It has its ups and Lord knows it has its downs. I had to take a step back and reflect on this new found free time. Within my reflection time I realized I’m an entitled, spoiled only child who lacks discipline and has no hustling mentality. When everything has been practically handed to you your entire life and then suddenly you’re out in the world alone to fend for yourself, you may experience a bunch of bullshit along the way.

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However, to say I haven’t done anything with my chosen freedom would be a lie. I signed up for Lyft a ridesharing app where I have to uncomfortably drive people around in the backseat of an overpriced rental car. I drive enough just to make my car payment most weeks. You can’t tell me there’s one Lyft driver who’s excited to drive for Lyft. I’m grateful to finally be able to get around the city without stepping on to the piss & shit aroma the metro bus offers but driving for Lyft sucks balls. It also doesn’t help that I don’t really know how to navigate the city and I’m a pretty average driver considerably.

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I didn’t move all the way to L.A. to chauffeur people around. I also didn’t move out here to become a teacher but within this free time I found a love and appreciation for Yoga; specifically Yoga Barre– a ballet, cardio, upbeat, lit af class that has transformed not only my body but my mind. I enrolled in Yoga Barre training with hopes to finally get some abs but in the end I’m now a certified instructor guiding others to find love for their bodies at three different Hot Yoga studios. It feels amazing, to just be able to express my personality and have fun with a group of diverse individuals. I’m falling in love with teaching and I’m looking forward to expanding my knowledge and practice.

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Now…As for Loud! The Musical (which you can find on youtube here’s the link:  Loud! The Musical

Loud, is my first visual content released to the world wide web. I wrote it, I produced it, I acted in it and I even directed a couple scenes. Yo, this shit is hard. I love it so much it frustrates me. When things aren’t perfect which really means when things don’t go my way I overthink, over criticize but undermine my abilities to make this happen.  I know what you’re thinking…“Keep believing in yourself, keep pushing” I get it and I am. Right now though, I need a mental break from this whole trying to break into the industry thing. I really just want to focus on me…and Yoga…and weed.

So stay tuned and Namaste.

Episode 13: 5 Jobs That Can Help You Survive In L.A.

Don’t tell the IRS but I’ve had six jobs since living in sunny Los Angeles. Yes, that’s right. Six jobs! These six jobs  barely help me live a sustainable lifestyle, but then again I have  an extraordinary  weed habit so I may have  mismanaged my money somewhere a long the way.

This is not about me. This is about the jobs in L.A. that are readily available if you decide to move out here with a one way ticket,  two suitcases,  $143,  prayer and the hope that you’ll meet Childish Gambino. I mean, with the hopes you don’t fail and embarrass your friends and family.. You’ll be annoyed you might have to eat tacos every day but you’ll be able to have a little pocket change at least enough for you to head to the beach, bring a taco.

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Photographer Assistant– (Or something like that)  This random Photo-booth business owned by two tiny Mexican dudes had me  travel by bus, train and on foot to parts of Cali as far as Chatsworth, Downey,  and Palo Verdes. I  set up camera equipment and snapped pictures at weddings and Quinceanera’s. It was my first job in L.A. it didn’t pay but $60 a gig, I got fired after the second week for not having a car to travel to all those different parts of town. Couldn’t carry all that equipment on the Metro apparently.  I was able to make due for a couple weeks and I’ve seen more parts of Los Angeles then some people who have lived here their entire lives.

Hostess– At an “upscale” Steakhouse. Found this job off Craigslist; the lazy guide for the jobless. As soon as I was hired the manager told me we eat free. I was willing and more able than ever to make this job work. I showed up on time, I passed my probation period. I thought everything was gravy like the delicious gravy they made that went with those soft ass mashed potatoes. I was fired from the steakhouse after I told the manager to “calm down.” I sat a couple at a table he specifically told me not to.  He was being a tad bit dramatic about it.  The couple was having their  anniversary I wanted them to sit at nice table, plus they tipped me.  Anyway, he didn’t like that. So the very next day, through good old fashioned text message I Christina, hasn’t had gravy since.

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“I was two for two. My confidence was super low and I needed money quick.”

Scammer– You know those  calls you get in the middle of the day from somewhere in middle America telling you they can “relieve” your student loans.  I  was the paper pusher. The job was everything I’m against: cubical’s, lame holiday parties, quota’s. My boss ordered El Pollo Loco for us a lot. Like that was going to make up for the fact that we were underpaid, worked holidays and had to change the company name a few times to be ahead of the Feds.  This is the only job I would actually say you should totally avoid. It’s not worth it.

Image result for working retail gifRetail at The Grove: The Grove in Los Angeles is an outdoor mall for tourists and C-list celebrities. When you’re at home watching season finale’s of those annoying  singing contest shows nine times out of ten its filmed at The Grove. It’s ironic and humbling working at the same retail job I did when I was in college. I’m closer in age to the managers then the actual employees. I don’t like following people around with there clothes and I’m tired of arguing over a return policy at a store I don’t even shop at!

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TV & Entertainment: I worked my first Production Assistant position a week after I moved to L.A.  I don’t know if it was fate or me just begging for work through email but that one gig lead me to multiple PA positions, a script supervisor position for a couple BET Specials and a Office PA position for a feature film. It has been the most gratifying, feel good, learning experiences ever.  I seriously can not wait until I make a career out of this. When you have passion and drive for something, it’s inevitable, you’re gonna receive it…Right?

So there you have it, I’ve made  the appropriate sacrifices, I’ve been uncomfortable but I’ve stayed committed. I’m working my way to be as lit as possible. I will not stop. I don’t want to.  If you’re ready to move out here or even if you’re not. Why wouldn’t you just take the chance, just to see what can happen?

what new lifeline can you create for yourself? My motto in L.A. has been “smoke weed but make sure you get your shit done.”  I don’t know if that really correlates with anything I just wrote but you get me.

I’m currently working at my 6th job, which will soon be bringing a little surprise.

Stay tuned.

 

Episode 12: That Hippie is Almost 30!

Wow… I can’t believe that on this date 29 years ago I was forcefully coming out of my mother’s vagina. As I sit back and reflect on my life I have no choice but to be thankful. First obvious thing to be thankful for is I’m alive and that’s super cool…but It’s the knowledge I’ve attained, the degrees I’ve earned, the solid group of friends I’m among, the crazy but loyal family I have, the no diseases, no babies, I even have abs now...That in itself deserves appreciation. I’m living in the city of my dreams pursuing my dreams.

Yo, life is Lit!

 

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Now, I admit…I’ve been a little hard on myself this year. Moving to a new city, starting over from scratch is no easy lay.

Working two jobs and still not making ends meet is one thing but having two jobs in L.A. riding public transportation has got to be what a glimpse of hell feels like.

Image result for i'm broke  gifDon’t forget the extra pressure I put on myself so I can prove to everyone I can do this. Trust me, it’s a headache trying to please everyone for the likes.

This year I put my experiences working for TV studios, connecting with different people, auditioning for shows, performing stand-up all on the back burner why, because in my pot filled head I don’t have a series on television?  Mannnnn, F*** that.  I literally collected a group of thirteen strangers and finessed them into making my pilot episode for weed and food.

I’m Magic Af!

Image result for sailor moon gif   I just have to use my magic powers with no fear and no regrets. Like Sailor Moon in the third season.

I think it’s okay I’m hard on myself because it keeps my eye steady on the prize This comedy writer game ain’t for the weak. The politics, the ex-vine stars, the cliques. I have a lot more work to do. At almost 30 I’m ready to push hard for what I want. Only took three decades..

I must  stay fateful and trusting in myself and the big guy/girl up stairs that this journey though it may be filled with twists and turns; is my journey. Nobody else’s.

I’m glad God is giving me another chance at life so I continue pursuing this crazy dream.. Because other than  peace on Earth, Trump out of office, legalized marijuana I just want to write comedy and be really good at it. 

Today, I celebrate my life, my experiences and all that is to come. Today, a Hippie was born.

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