Help, my parents are my roommates

Kat Ahn Dec 23, 2011

Bob Moon: Many of us are going to be entertaining family this weekend, so here’s wishing for the best during those gatherings. No fights over politics; no squabbles over Scrabble. Just imagine joy, peace on earth and goodwill toward brother Ben.

But if you do have a moment when you might want to count to 10, just remember what you’re about to hear from commentator Kat Ahn — at least your relatives probably aren’t staying for the long haul.

Kat Ahn: “Kat — Mom and Dad are coming to L.A.,” my brother tells me. “For how long?” I ask.

“They’re moving in with us,” he says.

Well, my brother and I weren’t as shocked as most 20-somethings would’ve been. Throughout our lives, our parents had been owners of various businesses, from a cheesesteak shop to a hip-hop clothing store. This led to fun stories, but sporadic income. When I got older, I attended N.Y.U. and decided to pursue my goal of being an actress/writer. Soon, I was in L.A. living with my brother, who had producing goals of his own. That’s when we got the call from our parents.

I had a choice: Get a desk job to help support my parents, or continue to work survival jobs with the hope of booking that huge acting role. So, I took a day job at a tech startup while the four of us became an awkward family unit once again.

We bickered — over the fact that I like bougie yogurt. What? I love my Fage much to the annoyance of my mother who would’ve preferred that I get the deal from Ralph’s. It was like being transported back to being your 14-year-old self. Except this time, you’re helping to take care of bills. It was hard watching your parents struggle while you, yourself, were struggling. And so, we worked harder. My dad got a job working the graveyard shift. My mother rediscovered her talent for calligraphy. My brother produced his first independent feature. And I discovered stand-up comedy, something I never thought I’d be doing.

I wish I had a happy ending. Our family is still struggling, but there’s hope on the horizon. My dad met a business partner at church and is opening a business in the Silver Lake district. Oh, and I wrote a TV comedy pilot based on this whole situation. C’mon. This is L.A. You’ll love it.

Moon: Kat Ahn lives in Los Angeles. Even if you haven’t got a sitcom in the works, we’d love to hear your thoughts.

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