It was an adventure until I could figure out a way to immigrate to America and be with my sister and her family who graciously agreed to have me move in (for years!) with them while I figured my life out. The process of immigrating, building a life in suburban America, going to college and then law school, all of it was fun and enlightening. Everyday I found new things to be amused about.
Fast forward to my amazing win at the Austin Film Festival for Best Comedy Screenplay. An honor to have won amongst past Oscar winners and 11,000 entries! Guess my life story makes for a good movie!
Comedy is rooted in discomfort, but teaches you to keep perspective and turn the pain into therapy. Everyday problems become everyday observations and end up as everyday musings. It’s often in the attitude.
Now, here I am, putting myself out there, doing shows at charity events, private events, and at the nation’s leading comedy clubs. Come follow me on this crazy adventure. Don’t worry, we won’t namaste in bed or drink chai tea. I’ll keep it authentic and real and in your face, because that’s how aunties roll.
In all honesty though, I read Kevin Hart’s book, I Can’t Make This Up: Life Lessons, and realized that I shared so much in common with his story, except his experiences were rooted in poverty in America and mine in affluence in India. I too had spent years of my life ‘being funny’ so that I would be liked, be invited for a warm meal and have a place to visit. Though, unlike him, I didn’t have a smart mother to guide me. I bumbled along my own path for decades (this may explain the late start?). As I read the words, things started falling in place in my head and heart and I decided that I would try my luck somewhere. Could it be that I have what it takes? Also, why hadn’t I seen more Indian female comedians? I couldn’t recall any female Indian comedians who had jokes that reflected everyday Indian and American life.
One small step after another, I started putting myself out there. First to my friends and family, then to their friends and family and then to anybody who was willing to listen and show up and watch me try. At the risk of sounding immodest, from the moment I did my first show, I never looked back. I felt at home on the mic. I could comfortably look around and say funny things and sometimes say totally normal things like “my husband wants me to get up on stage and be famous and get on tv, so he can finally press the mute button on me.”