Did I really move to LA?
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Well, you did it man. You've packed it all up, cased your baby, and taken off for the bright lights. One man. One mission.
Half Three-quarters of a really kick-ass song. A song that will change the lives of white males 14-21 all across Our Great Nation. You. Really. Did it. Drink it all in, future rock star of the millennium; she's all yours for the taking.
Yep, its amazing.
Right. Now, time to consider the question staring back at you from the shiny glass of the monolithic recording studio: "Did I Really Move to LA?"
Oh Yes, You Totally Did
Welcome to reality, nice to see you back with us all. Tea? Oh, I'm sorry, we don't accept personal checks...
Here are a few things to consider now that you're out of shrooms.
Remember how you vowed never to work in the food service industry EVER again? Welcome back to Burgerdome. Yes, you will be getting a low-paying, hopefully temporary minimum wage position. Yes, it will involve a misspelled name tag, and with that mop, a stylish hairnet. This is usually realized within week 1 of entry into LA county, as the streets are just a tad tougher than you thought (See: LA Street Culture).
NOTE: DO NOT SPEND THE MONEY ON DRUGS
There will be pot money soon enough. You seriously should've considered this predicament before you left, as you most definitely are not talented or charming enough to meet people who might be willing to smoke you out like your friends back home. FUCK! (Yep, you bought the train ticket amigo)
LA Street Culture
Often, newly homeless rock prodigies buy into the misconception that LA streets are populated by friendly, jolly denizens, similar to a fully-proportioned version of Munchkinland. This is unfortunately a false perception; LA bears very little resemblance to Sesame Street, and thus, you should become mentally prepared for the theft of your $400 "just in case" money, and the watch your grandfather bestowed upon you while on his deathbed.
Thieves are just one of the many ways you'll be losing money on the streets of LA. Others include:
- Drug Dealers - Steer clear until adequate funds are accumulated. Drug dealers have no friends, so don't expect any hand outs. Even when you do have the money, keep a moderate distance for safety purposes.
- Hookers - If you can't afford a dimebag, you most definitely can't afford Mystique, Cherry, or Kitten, or their respective STDs.
- Police - As LA is revered for its courteous and helpful police force, cops shouldn't be a major concern
- Fellow Musicians - Possibly looking to steal your cardboard sheltering.
- Jack Perkins - He's the most literate news correspondent in the country: he WILL find you.
Now, if you're a bit more sluggish an individual, you might go a while before employment. Thus, you'll need to arm yourself for potential encounters with the aforementioned psychopaths populating LA's back alleys. A list of absolutely essential survival items include:
- Shiv - Some sort of sharpened tool, easily concealed within a shirt sleeve. Protects well against Crips, Bloods, and other variations of rapper, crazed war veterans, and your (more violent) fellow drug abusers.
- Lighter - In case you make friends...
- Lucky Pick - or Sheila to you and you alone.
- Song - You live on the street; just finish the god damn thing.
- Various Knickknacks - When you're famous, you'll look back fondly on your armless teddy bear and collection of nail clippers.
Some aspiring geniuses keep all of these items together in a duffel or trash bag, while others use large compartmentalized overcoats. While sometimes the harder to obtain, overcoats allow for easy access to said items, and serve a dual purpose, doubling as a sleeping bag.
But no, you've gotta be smarter than the lazy guitar strummin' lotus-eaters on the block. That aint you, right?
Getting the Big Gig
Okay, enough of the dumpster diving and playing on street corners for pocket money. You're walking into that big ass studio and recording a song. No ifs, no ands, no butters. You, guitar, ecstasy. All you need is a middle age man to move those fader.. things. Like the streets, the recording studio is another place where proper etiquette is called for.
Showmanship is the benchmark of a true performer, and your character begins with the very first person you meet in that studio. Make a point to be loud, possibly to the point of a security alert. This will show the Studio Manager that you mean business, and are absolutely willing to break the most expensive of equipment to achieve the next hit sound. As this Manager will be a grey-haired, slightly eccentric man, he'll look at you deep in the eye for a few pronounced seconds, then proclaim your brilliance.
Totally Hassle the Engineer
That bald guy behind the $40,000 mixing console has no clue what he's doing. Make sure to critique his changes constantly throughout your session to ensure the highest quality sound.
Coping with Mediocrity
Contrary to popular belief, you do not instantly fail after recording your first studio project. Rather, you slowly begin snowballing towards rock bottom. 
This stage generally begins at the listening party you hold in your studio apartment, when you realize that though the song is now recorded, you never did quite get around to finishing it. The little money made from valiantly serving Arby's patrons has all gone to rent, leaving you at square one (plus a cat that your land lord doesn't know about, whom you've affectionately dubbed Cliff). The snowball gets larger.
NOTE: NOW SPEND THE MONEY ON DRUGS
Enjoy the Drip
But now, after the binge drinking, fast women and loosely fitting denim jeans, your mind still beckons the distant refrain: "Did I really move to LA?"
Notes on the Move
- Hey, stupid: DON'T SPEND THE MONEY ON THAT SWEET PIPE YOU MORON.
- Unless you happen to be black, brown, or any other shade of not white.
- Mainly West coast variations of Too Short and E-40.
- NOTE: Remember to remove your shiv before using your overcoat as a sleeping bag.
- But no worries, surely that stage is a ways away.. surely.. bum a cigarette by any chance?
- Well still, don't go for that pipe, it doesn't look like it'll fill out nicely...
- As a roadie for Disturbed... *sigh...*
- You're not supposed to understand, that's the point! Christ, haven't you ever seen Easy Rider?! The Dude abides?!
..is this even an article, man? Damn... LA brother, L-fuckin-A...