Light Hustler (general)

Ivana Grahovac is a wonder to behold. And she's even more wondrous once you know her story.

The Director of Advancement for Facing Addiction and former Executive Director for Transforming Youth Recovery wasn't always the poised spokesperson today. In fact, she's the girl who spent so long raving in Croatia that she decided to drop out of school and move to Milan to model. While living the so-called glamorous life (which she swears wasn't glam), her heroin addiction took hold.

Numerous stints in treatment followed, as did jail time after she stole a car.

And then, against all odds, Grahovac had a spiritual experience that not only got her sober but also made her not experience opiate withdrawals.

Hear about the entire journey by downloading this episode.

Direct download: ivana_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

Kane Holloway is a Seattle native who resides in sunny L.A. Kane is a nationally touring comedian, podcast host and he has performed on "Laughs on Fox."

In this story, told at the live monthly Light Hustler storytelling show, he talks about a number of experiences—being bald at the wrong time, physical pain and what happens when the person rooting for you seems to be giving up on you. The overall theme: even the unlucky can find recovery. And, if that supposedly unlucky person is named Kane Holloway, he can make it into comedy gold.

Direct download: Kane_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:18am PDT

Jules Posner cut his teeth in his hometown of San Francisco, where he honed his act by yelling over rowdy bar crowds, coffee grinders, and shouty vagrants that have become commonplace in the San Francisco comedy scene. Now based in Los Angeles, he is one of those comics whose writing and delivery make standup seem like it’s just a funny person talking off the top of their head. Reality isn’t far behind the illusion; his riffing paces his written material in quality.

This story, which had people screaming with laughter (and asking when he'd be back to perform again), covers the solo drinking games Jules liked to play, how having a bird shit on your head can be lucky and different reasons sobriety sucks and doesn't.

Direct download: Jules_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

Today’s episode features the one and only Ally Weinhold.

Ally is a Los Angeles-based comedian, writer, and alcoholic. She hosts a monthly stand up show at Bar Lubitsch, called Awkward & Aggressive and recently co-produced a pilot called Murder Roommates with her sketch team, BadAssKnitties, and WhoHaha.

Her story asks a seemingly simple question: what happens if you hack your ex-boyfriend's email and then send the woman he's dating a break up email? And what if you follow that with a series of decisions that culminate in his feeling like you're a danger to his life?

If you're Ally, you make that into a hilarious, ridiculous story.


Direct download: Ally_W_Done_1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

The comedian ANT has been everywhere: a regular on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The Tyra Banks Show, he is the only comedian to appear on all five seasons of NBC’s hit series Last Comic Standing. He was the host of VH1’s Celebrity Fit Club and starred in the LOGO series, U.S. of ANT. His hit stand-up DVD, ANT: America’s Ready and comedy CD “Follow my ass!” have sold tens of thousands of copies. On his hit podcast Second Chances, he interviews people about their, you got it, second chances in life.

But he's much more than his resume. ANT, who's in recovery after a great deal of tragedy in his life, has an ability to turn even the darkest stories imaginable (say, this one, about his cat, partner and dad all dying) into touching hilarity.


Direct download: ANT_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

Today’s episode features a very special guest: me. Since I’m releasing episodes that contain stories from my live storytelling show and I perform in this show, sometimes these episodes are going to feature—well, me. (By the by, the show, which takes place every other month in LA, has been an LA Weekly pick of the week and is being developed into a video series.)

The story I tell here is about why someone like me should have never smoked pot—let alone gone to Amsterdam to eat a succession of space cakes.  For more about who I am when I’m not eating space cakes and losing a day of my life, click here. For more about the workshops I lead where I teach people to take their most disturbing or interesting experiences and make them into stories, click here. For more information about my online writing classes and coaching programs, click here.

For a list of events, so you can stay up to date on future storytelling shows, click here. If you want to see live broadcasts of the show, go ahead and Like my Facebook page, since that's where we broadcast them!

Direct download: Anna_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

To say I was excited to interview John Taylor would be the understatement of the century. As an allegedly together adult, I resisted the urge to tell him that my adolescent bedroom was papered with his image (covered in lipstick kisses, despite the fact that I didn’t and still don’t wear lipstick). In short, my inner 14-year-old was having a conniption fit while my outer adult had a glorious, insightful conversation with a brilliant, thoughtful man with over two decades of sobriety.

Those who only think of Taylor solely as Duran Duran’s pretty boy will be delighted to hear what an analytical and kind guy he is—a man who speaks openly about what it was like to have worldwide fame while he was still living at home with his parents and talks about a recovery meeting as a place where he’s thrilled to be able to meet people from all walks of life.

In this episode, we talked about his must-read autobiography In The Pleasure Groove, what it’s like to go from blaming everyone to taking responsibility for yourself, how no one really acts their age and the joys of watching soccer, among many other topics.

Direct download: john_taylor_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:46am PDT

Today’s episode features an absolute doll of a human being: Greg Behrendt.

In it, Greg tells a story from the Light Hustler live storytelling show which takes place the last Friday of every other month in LA.

His story veers from a night where he was wasted and cold and ended up with a burrito stuck to his hands but also touches on driving a car into the ocean and why we should bring our solutions and not our problems home.

When he’s not making Light Hustler audiences nearly pee their pants with laughter, Greg is performing (both as a comedian and musician) or writing (oh yeah; he’s the guy who co-wrote the seminal book He’s Just Not That Into You, among other bestselling books).

To see the calendar for future storytelling events, click here. To catch the live broadcasts of the shows, go ahead and give a like on Facebook, since we play every show on there.

Direct download: Greg_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

Brad Vos is a mental health and addictions recovery advocate who, in his words, "promotes the opportunity, and not the sacrifice, that recovery provides." Canada-based, he's someone who's tried numerous roads to sobriety, including 12-step and SMART Recovery, but finds he has a "bad wolf" who can talk him out of staying on the right path.

But he's determined to let the good wolf take charge, something that's evident in his new project—the website Sobertunity, which also includes accounts on Instagram and Facebook.

Brad and I first got to know each other when he joined the accountability group I run with Sober Evolution's Austin Cooper and from day one, he's been active in the group—sharing updates, schedules, plans...and his struggles. He's therefore the ideal person to show the rest of the world the sort of stuff we do in there. He also happens to be very funny and as someone who's semi obsessed with people sharing their "light," I cherish any opportunity to let hilarity reign.

In this episode, we discuss escaping a soulless sales job, staying on the path and how animals can help with our recovery, among many other topics.

NOTE: This episode is from a Facebook Live interview that we did, which means that the audio isn’t as sharp as it is on regular episodes. Please bear with that! And please tune into my regular Facebook Live interviews. Make sure you Like my page so stay up on the info!

Direct download: Brad_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

Most every addict who's been in therapy has lied to their therapist or psychiatrist.

The question shrinks know when you're lying? We asked LA board certified psychiatrist Dr. Josh Lichtman for his take.

Direct download: josh_lying_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT