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California Questionnaire: Margaret Cho

California Questionnaire: Margaret Cho

The Emmy- and Grammy-nominated stand-up comic, actress, and singer clues us into her love of Los Angeles and California culture

Margaret Cho has been doing stand-up since high school, and her ability to make audiences LOL has afforded her opportunities in all genres—from her own sitcom on ABC, to big-screen roles, to her Emmy-nominated turn as Kim Jong-Il on 30 Rock, to musical collaborations on her two Grammy-nominated albums. Although Cho is at home on the stage, she’s in love with her home in Los Angeles, and the diverse, artistic community she’s built for herself. She shares her favorite parts of California below.

Where do you live? Hollywood.

Why there? I have always wanted to live in Hollywood—it's been a dream since I was a kid! I loved the movie Valley Girl. It seemed like the perfect place and it is!

Who or what is your greatest California love? Where I live now, how my life is, my house, my people—it’s the best!

What is the biggest misperception about Californians? I think that people think we are shallow, or that L.A. has no culture. But it's incredibly rich in diversity, art, class, community.

What is the stereotype that most holds true? That we are self-involved. This is incredibly true.

What is your favorite Golden State splurge? I love taking [U.S. Highway] 101 instead of [Interstate] 5. That is the ultimate indulgence—splurging on taking my time. I just love to be spontaneous and take in different places [on] each trip.

Time for a road trip—where are you going? To San Francisco from Los Angeles. It's my ancestral home; the ultimate journey. I love Haight Street. Just walking down the street is fun for me. Also, I love eating at random places along the streets—I'm very adventurous with my appetite.

If you could decree an official state culinary experience, what would it be? I love a Hollywood classic like Musso & Frank Grill. I used to go in the ’90s with Quentin Tarantino, and it's just as glamorous now as it was in the ’50s!

How do you define California style? California style is casual but elegant. It’s all about sunshine, linen, dark denim, and light wood. That Summer of Love vibe.

Best California song? “Shores of California” by The Dresden Dolls.

How would your California dream day unfold? Late-morning wake-up to do yoga or go to the Rose Bowl for a power walk, then eat a leisurely meal in Chinatown, and see a great late night show at Largo—the perfect day!


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