Why i'm here
Some people hate this city, some people love this city: to me, it’s just a city I want something from. I don’t even know if it’s here, one thing I do know is that no one guaranteed it to me at the agriculture checkpoint on the drive in to California. My name’s Rob Banks and I’ve been here for two years now.
I’m originally from Cleveland, Ohio and I moved to Los Angeles in November of 2013. I drove a Chevy pickup across the desolate I-40 Interstate with only two radio stations and neither of them were in English. At every gas station a homeless man would greet me with a hello and a very predictable question. I’d usually say no or I’d leave to another gas station across the street, and as I’d fill up my gas tank I’d watch the same homeless person cross the street and ask me again. All I want to say is thanks to those homeless people; I made it to Los Angeles in record timing.
I moved into a house in Calabasas with 16 people. I stayed in what was originally the dining room and I shared it with a guy who owned a flower shop in Santa Monica. That house always had different people living in it: there were French filmmakers who made a documentary about me, a college football star from Colorado who later came to be one of my good friends, and there was also a Hollywood producer who worked with big names but was just down on his luck…and we all had to pay $550 a month to an actor who does asylum films, and ya, I mean the shitty ones like Sharknado. It was truly a welcoming to the city of angels, something I’d never forget or regret.
Hollywood never sold me though; hearing about a city that makes people rich and famous, you’d expect bricks of gold paving the street and Hollywood legends that could never die. In a way, it’s like that but the complete opposite, there’s just people dressed like Hollywood legends and the homeless people who I had been running from along I-40 seemed to have clones of themselves there, and the bricks that were yellow weren’t gold. But this didn’t stop me from taking my mother to show her where I wanted to live one day; she didn’t have the nicest reaction as you thought she would.
One city my mother really liked was Burbank, and I don’t disagree, I enjoy Burbank quite a bit. From the two AMC theaters to Flappers Comedy Club, it’s a place that offers everything I love: overpriced movie tickets and stand-up comedy. That’s where I began my stand-up comedy endeavor, Flappers Comedy Club. The first day I moved to Los Angeles, I came to this club to bomb in front of my 16 roommates who wanted to come watch, they probably wanted to move out after my performance but that’s where I was; the bottom. I don’t know if I’m still at the bottom all I really know is that people are laughing at what I’m saying so I must be doing something right and I intend to keep doing that until I die. -Rob Banks 2/27/2016