priya prasad

laugh at me > read my thoughts > book me > tell me I'm pretty

Corporate Life Fail

This may or may-not be a true story....
Do you ever see someone new to the corporate workforce? Carrying a brand new laptop bag, shiny new shoes that he still isn't used to wearing so he stumbles along, while carrying a Starbucks latte in one hand and a steamy McMuffin in the other, all the while with a glint of excitement in his eye? You look down and see yourself in your un-ironed outfit and sneakers, carrying your heels in a bag, your hair still wet and sunglasses on, because you have lost interest in doing your hair or putting on makeup, since there is not a single hot guy to impress at work.
You laugh at the silly boy and think:
"Bless his little hawrt, poor thing... all that enthusiasm is going to fade soon...doubt he will last long."
And then you see the same guy two years later and his laptop bag is upgraded to a name brand, he's now wearing a tie with his ironed suit, his Starbucks latte is now a Cappuccino from the trendy new coffee shop on the corner (that also has a wine n' cheese happy hour), and a flaky croissant in the other hand, and a bluetooth in his ear in which he is talking to someone about their weekend in Bali.
You look at yourself in the reflection of a nearby building (almost mistaking yourself for a homeless person) and realize YOU are the one who has failed at corporate life..
ohh. just me? ...

Thank God for Comedy Life.


Funny Women?

One of my all-time favorite movies is CLUE. I might have lost some of you already, but stick with me to see how I randomly go from CLUE to Feminism. I literally love this movie, a comedic who-done-it, what more could I ask for?? As I was watching it recently, for the millionth time, I realized it was the first time I had watched it after becoming a comedian myself. It was with a new eye that I could appreciate the comedic timing of these brilliant actors. Tim Curry, Christopher Lloyd, Michael McKean & Madeline Khan… and then I started thinking about Madeline Khan and that line in the movie that get’s me every time:

Wadsworth: You *were* jealous that your husband was shtupping Yvette. That's why you killed him, too!
Mrs. White: Yes. Yes, I did it. I killed Yvette. I hated her, so much...[stammers]
Mrs. White: it-it- the f - it -flam - flames. Flames, on the side of my face, breathing-breathl-heaving breaths. Heaving breaths...

Brilliant because come to find out it was improved on the spot, also brilliant because Madeline’s character in Blazing Saddles was Lili Von Shtupp (shtupping, get it?! Love it!).

All this being said, I started to think about my comedic influences throughout my formative years, and how I can easily spit out names of a dozen men: Danny Kaye, Dick Van Dyke, Steve Martin, Bill Cosby, Peter Sellers, Jerry Lewis, Robin Williams, Eddie Murphy… but have to stop to think about the female influences. Why is that?

I guess I consider myself to be a Feminist, I believe in Webster’s definition of the word and want all those things for women, I am a woman, I believe a woman should be president, I love my mommy, so why isn’t my comedy influenced by more women from my youth? Ah but it is come to think of it!

Lucille Ball, Gilda Radner, Carol Burnett & Vicki Lawrence, Carol Channing, The ladies from AB FAB Joanna Lumley & Jennifer Sunders, Whoopi Goldberg, Tracy Ullman, Ellen DeGeneres , Betty White … there ARE so many. So why don’t these names pop into my head first when I’m asked?? Do I need to work on being a better Feminist? Do I subconsciously know that not everyone even knows who some of these ladies are, but not everyone knows the fellas either, why am I programmed like this?? I have no Clue. (see what I did there?) I HATE it when people say stupid things like “There are some women who can be funny.” Uhh duh. We are all living the human experience and have the ability to find the funny.

Look I don’t really know the answer, but I do know that I can only control how I present myself to the world. Feminist or not, women have influenced my comedic perspective from day one.

I haven’t really answered any questions in this blog, and possibly just made things more confusing for myself, needless to say I vow to be more conscious of how I answer such questions in the future …

I salute you Women of Comedy.

Throwback Blog: "Random Thoughts..."

I wrote this on FB Notes on Sept. 10, 2009... these thoughts are still relevant, unfortunately? Enjoy!

  • I HATE IT when I am trying to have a conversation with you (not converste) and your response to EVERYTHING I say is "That's What's Up"... really???? boooo, that's NOT what's up.
  • When I am waiting behind you at the Toll Plaza on a bridge for 14 minutes before we get to the attendant...WHY DIDN'T YOU SPEND THAT TIME LOOKING FOR MONEY???
  • If you only see your hairstyle in movies such as VALLEY GIRL, SQUARE PEGS or ADVENTURES IN BABYSITTING it maybe time to rethink your bangs. The ozone layer will thank you later by sparing your children.
  • I think it should be a law that women who put their children in beauty pageants should have some beauty about themselves first...why are the Moms NEVER good looking and have the personality of a dishrag?
  • I still don't believe that Rancho Cucamunga is an actual city.
  • I like cheese. A lot.
  • Just because you supposedly dated one Indian chick doesn't mean you know anything about Indian people. especially if you don't even remember her name? Why did you even tell me this as a selling point??
  • I am Indian, NO I was not born with the knowledge of belly dancing.
  • WHY DO YOU THINK IT IS OKAY TO ASK IF MY FATHER IS A DOCTOR JUST CAUSE I AM INDIAN. I mean he is but, im just sayin' ... no he isn't, calm down.
  • On the same note...when I meet a guy who is not Indian, the first question is ALWAYS..."What would your parents do if you brought me home."...uh I just met you, my parents are the least of your concerns at this point.
  • I HATE weak handshakes. Something about that makes me think you have daddy & mommy issues...
  • Why is it that when you walk thru a crowded club, one guy always stops you and says "Hey baby why aren't you smiling?"... umm because you just grabbed my arm like you know me, homegirl's fony-pony over there keeps whacking me in the face every time she turns around, that dude with the HALITOSIS breath keeps stalking me, and the Bartender is an AHole. Anymore questions?? There is a good reason why I don't go out to "the club" anymore...

20 Years Back to the Future...

While all the kids seem to be going back to school today on my Facebook timeline... I went back to school this weekend.

What a trippy experience it is to see classmates after 20 years of radio silence. Well at least up until a few years ago when we could “virtually” reconnect on social media. Even still, what a strange tradition we have as a society to revisit a time when we were just developing a sense of self. Merely seeing someone’s face or mannerisms can bring back experiences or stories we have long forgotten about. Truth be told, as a senior I never thought I would attend ANY reunion, when I was done with high school I was so ready to be long gone and stay that way. How did I get to a place where I would want to revisit that time in my life?

We all go through tough times in High School I think, no matter if you are a popular kid or an outcast, and maybe I’ve always thought of that time as awkward and sometimes traumatizing. But I have begun to understand the fact that I have always been my own worst critic. A friend recently asked me if I was ever bullied in High School, and my immediate answer was:

“I was never bullied I don’t think. In fact I was pretty insignificant, not in a bad way, just that I was friends with some popular kids, and friends with some not so popular kids. I wasn’t all that smart (the only Indian to never make it to a Spelling Bee) nor an athlete (basically made it to varsity tennis only because I was a senior, not for my skills) but I toed the line pretty well.”

Hearing my answer out-loud gave me pause. Why do I remember feeling, back then, that I was made fun of, or was treated like an outcast? Suddenly, it was like a Fight Club punch to the face I realized how I was my own worst bully (don’t tell anyone I talked about Fight Club; Rule #1). All those years of trying to figure out who I was and what I was about left me feeling beat up and ready to move on to the College chapter of my life.

Sidenote: I realize this is a little dark for a comedian’s blog, but I fully believe that these are things that make a comedian. If I can’t revisit and laugh at my own dark past then what good am I??

All this being said, I was nervous to reunite with those people who surrounded me on a daily basis during those childhood years. What will they be like? How will they treat me? Will there be stories of good times or bad times? And most importantly will they appreciate the fact that I finally got rid of my Unibrow????

Amazingly, it was so easy…and I found myself wishing we had a second night to reconnect, because once we were all thrown into the pot together, it was like seeing old family members. It was apparent many people came in with the same nervousness (maybe not unibrow nervousness) as me, and despite it all we were all in high school going through similar things with different groups of friends at the same time, and no one can take that experience from us. Annie, you said it best “I marvel at how people change and grow, and yet the essential essence of a person, their laugh and their mannerisms, are the same...”. There were so many I didn’t get a chance to chat with and many I wanted to chat with longer, I hope to get that chance in the future.

This weekend showed me that I have grown up a bit, and that teenager may now be an adult who is still her own worst critic, but one who is no longer insignificant... Shout-out to Newport High School Class of 1995.

Single? So what...

I've been asked this question a few times recently, I never know how to answer so, here are my thoughts, not ALL my thoughts just the ones that come to mind in this moment:

What does it mean to be a single woman today at my age (37)? Does it mean I am doomed to live a lonely life with my cat and Vogue mag subscriptions eating Snickers bars and and trying to apply Tiger Balm on my own achy back??  I seriously hope not.

The thing is, I don't want to get online and search for a man. I don't knock those who do, but it doesn't behoove me to try and describe myself in 40 characters or less and hope that this site will match me with a guy who likes 2Pac & Biggie, a good wine n' cheese pairing and 90's Bollywood movies.

I'm an onion, as they say, and I have layers, and I guess I don't trust that a website can capture ME accurately. Like literally I love raw onions... who's gonna read that and wanna kiss me?? How do I put raw onions under "likes" and not get matched with a weirdo who spends his evenings searching for vampires? And then there is the world outside the inter-world...the real world where everyone is staring at the inter-world on their phones all day. Do people actually meet the old fashioned way anymore? I guess the old-fashioned way would be with a match-maker or at a family reunion when your uncle thinks your second cousin is a good match for you. I don't want that either.

I want to go to a Starbucks and happen to be in line behind the man of my dreams, when he turns around to comment on how he is sure they will get his name wrong on his order I'll laugh and sparks will fly...or I want to get into a minor car accident with the guy who will turn out to be my major soul mate. Am I living in a fantasy world? Is this too much to ask the universe? Possibly, but I guess I am ok with that. I am ok waiting for that one magical moment because as much as most women my age have been through in relationships I am determined to hold on to a sense of optimism. Some call it naivety others call it a positive outlook. I am certain that the "across the room chemistry" can happen. It should feel like kismet, and I've seen it happen to others, why not me?

I hate when they say "there are a million fish in the sea" I've dated those fish and they stink. I just want 1 Loch Ness to stand apart from the others. A guy who doesn't mind that I need to sleep on the side of the bed closest to the phone, because otherwise I feel claustrophobic, or that I unconsciously shake my legs when I am concentrating on something, or that I have had sweaty hands and feet my whole life and psoriasis behind my ears...he doesn't mind these things because I am also someone who loves hard, and puts family first, who would rather be in pain herself if it means saving someone else, who gives the best massages, who has traveled to far off lands, who can cook up a storm and can make the perfect Michelada, who loves to laugh and live and love.

So to answer my first question, what does it mean to be single in today's world at this age? It means that I have a stronger sense of self but I am still learning. That I know what I want and what I will not entertain. That I will find my match at the same time I'm aware that the possibility exists I may not... but none of that will make or break me. It means that through all of life's trials and tribulations I will continue to learn how to love me because that is all I can control. Like Talib Kweli says: "Kneeling and praying that the lord and us will help us love ourselves. So much that the confidence will attract someone else...".

I've only gotten through a little over a 1/3 of what could be my lifetime. I have so many more experiences to have and people to meet and countries to see and cultures to learn about, I hope that I will get to do these things one day with that ONE guy and I'll keep a candle lit for that day that he shows up in my life, but till then...Today I am a 37 year old woman who is not afraid of single-hood or onions.