Shout out to the Bay Area Scene, that which bred me. We have a long line of successful Bay to LA transplants, including Robin Williams and 2pac. There’s something about the Bay that cultivates cleverness and creativity, and that extends to all people. If only we had a stronger work ethic like LA does.
There’s been a long going informal rivalry between the Bay and LA, on both ends, but particularly on the Bay’s end. I’ve noticed people from NorCal will trash talk SoCal, but then go there and enjoy their beaches and hotties. People from SoCal generally don’t trash talk NorCal, other than that they are aware that NorCal trash talks them and find it kind of uppity. But then again that’s what I know, and I also know that SoCal trash talking mostly goes on behind the backs of the object of the trash talk, so surely more is said.
Why does this rivalry exist? Well first we must acknowledge that despite our differences, the Bay and LA are more similar to each other than they are any other regions of the country. Culturally, geographically, it’s all California, different shades of golden. So maybe it’s our similarities that make us clash. My theory is, that people who live in the Bay are people who specifically want to live in California but don’t want to live in LA, which makes them, by default, have a slight chip against LA already. Whereas people live in LA because they want to live in LA, which is crazy enough already.
Which do I prefer? Well I love the Bay. I love that they still have what feels like fresh air, and people without dark jaded souls. But I do enjoy the SoCal beaches, and bounty of health food, which they need more, to counter the smog that infiltrates their pores on a daily basis. Essentially, I like that I have both. I have to periodically escape to the Bay, to breathe, to be treated like a bigger fish, and just to feel more attractive. But once I regain my life bar up here, it kind of feels like a waste if I don’t go back to LA and use it for something that counts. Sorry Bay, but you are a bubble. If you stay here, you just…stay here. And though there’s nothing wrong with that for a normal person, for a comedian, it’s a pigeon hole. And San Francisco pigeons eventually go crazy.
Last night I got a good dose of the Bay for my Day 880, just like the freeway that connects San Jose to Oakland. I did a private show at the Millennium Tower, the 4th largest building in SF, where bundles of rich people live. The laughs were weak, but they were polite and attentive. Then I headed over to the Brainwash, where the father of the Bay Area comedy scene, Tony Sparks, gave me a nice long guest set. The Brainwash is a special place, because it’s a freak show, and they laugh at such oddball things. It’s not a great test of what’s TV material, but it is a good test of balls and fearlessness. After I headed down to the Comet Club in the Marina, where I did a set for 4 people. Fellow comic, Kaseem Bentley, who’s given me a complex about the way I look since this streak started, was trying to tell me I look like shit, but then I asked a girl in the audience and she said I look great! But she also guessed my age was 33. But I’ll still take it. I know that my facial hair adds 10 years. Then Kaseem and I headed over to my boy Josh Walters’ stage workshop, where we did some experimental comedy, with the challenge of trying to make it rhyme. The Bay…full of artistic ambition.
I couldn’t have had this kind of night if I was in LA. How it would have been different….the richest building in LA would not let me in, and would probably tase me if I tried. The open mic of all open mics in LA would make me wait in a long list to get a set, and then cut me off at 3 minutes. The crowd of 4 people show would be the same, but they would be less happy, and a fellow LA comic would not have told me I look like shit, he would have said ‘You look great bro!’ and silently judged inside without me even being able to detect.