life stories series Imran hissah Abu Dhabi

Tell me a bit about yourself. What do you want the world to know about YOU?

My name is Imran G and I am a Rocket Scientist and Comedian currently based in California. I am the co-cost of the Bad Asians podcast (which was featured on iTunes in May 2018) and have also been featured on Audible.com as part of their ‘Sounds like America’ segment. I host a show called Space Talks: it’s a virtual reality show about all things Space. On the comedy side I’ve worked with Amy Schumer, Nikki Glaser, Russell Peters, Robin Williams and more. When not doing comedy, I enjoy doing cartwheels and acting like I know how to breakdance. I really hope this is enough because I also hate writing about myself.

Describe a typical day in your life.

My day is probably similar to most; I wake up, go to work, go to the gym, shower and then head to something comedy related. I’m lucky that a lot of comedy stuff happens at night. It’s balancing the two that gets tricky.

What was one of the biggest challenges you faced during your journey to where you are today?

Comedically, I think the biggest challenge is constantly believing in yourself. In the corporate world there is a clear path to advancement and that does not exist in the entertainment industry. Naturally there is a lot of questioning if what you’re doing is right or working and there is no clear answer. I’ve resolved myself to just doing what I like and what makes me happy. It’s worked pretty well for me so far!

Who would you describe as a role model and why?

I know this is a bit cliché but my parents. My parents immigrating out of India for a better life for my siblings and I, BEFORE we were born, is an insane concept to me. I cannot imagine leaving everyone and everything I know to move to a country just to have my first born to want to tell jokes. The fact that they still support me leads me to question their sanity.

Tell us one thing about you that most people don’t know.

I honestly don’t know how to break dance. I can pop n lock and move fluid enough that people just assume I can. It’s all a façade that I can no longer maintain. I also have not cried since 1998.

What is one piece of advice about how to cope with challenges/struggles you face in life that you would like to give to the world?

There’s no weakness in asking for help. Often, in the media, these single person narratives are pushed to the forefront; it always about how some person beat the odds and did it completely on their own. I hate these stories because I know you cannot achieve success completely by yourself but media perpetuates this story that you can. You nor your success is an island. If people see that you are working hard but struggling to reach a goal they’re more than willing to help you get to that next level. Your friends want you to succeed! Chris Rock has a great quote about this:

“I’d always end up broken down on the highway. When I stood there trying to flag someone down, nobody stopped. But when I pushed my own car, other drivers would get out and push with me. If you want help, help yourself – people like to see that.”

If you’re stuck moving forward, there is no shame in asking for help. As long as you’re out there pushing people will get beside you and push too. You’ll be surprised how many people are rooting for you.

What is ONE word that you feel defines you? (It could be your profession, a personality trait, or quality you possess).

Hungry. I’m hungry for success, I’m hungry for happiness but most of all I’m just always hungry for pizza. Or shawarma. Also tagine chicken. I just realized I haven’t eaten all day but my original statement still works so I’ll keep it; I AM HUNGRY

Follow Imran on Instagram @ImranTheG