#Ask Tranna: Achieving Fame and What to Get Mom?

Had I not chosen the glamorous career of a standup comedian, I am quite certain I would have been a life coach. My advice has actually helped tens and tens of people get their lives on track. Here, you may write to me in the strictest confidence, knowing that I will do everything to protect your anonymity. I look forward to hearing from you, and helping you in any way I can. I got your back.   – Tranna

"Dear Tranna, I want to become famous. How do I achieve fame? Help me live out my dream!"

Dear fame-seeker, 

What do you want to be famous for? Fame used to be the by-product of talent and achievement. We all know those days are largely over, but talent is still something I am inspired by and care deeply about, so I'm going to be blunt with you. The world has enough people who are famous for doing nothing of value. But if being that kind of famous is what you really want, it's not that difficult: legally change your last name to Kardashian. Or be a white gay male with a killer body and post a shirtless picture of yourself every day on Instagram (post a picture of your ass every other day). Basically, just be a pseudo porn star. I have nothing but respect for real porn stars and sex workers because they are making an honest living, but these pseudo porn stars on tumblr and Instagram who live only in gyms and on beaches, who post endless nude selfies, and who so embarrassingly and inaccurately call themselves "influencers" or "lifestyle gurus" need to get a fucking clue. I hope you want something more for yourself than what these hollow beings claim to offer. Be a real porn star, or dedicate yourself to what you're passionate about and actually create something of value and substance. No matter what kind of career you decide to pursue, you should not be driven by the end result. Focus on your work and the joy/inspiration you derive from it. If your only focus is becoming famous or getting rich, you will never be satisfied in any real, meaningful way. Again, I hope you want more for yourself. I'm sure your dream is more substantial than just being famous. What do you want to share with the world? Dig a little deeper.

Love and luck, 


"Dear Tranna, I need to get my mother a birthday gift. Any suggestions? I'm drawing a blank. Help!"

Dear Mother's child, 

I wish I had more details to help you! Sometimes it's best to start off with what not to get her. Whatever you do, do not make her something. Unless you are a professional artisan, no one wants a fucking homemade gift. I know that was unnecessarily aggressive, and I'm sorry, but it had to be said. Nothing at all is better than a homemade gift. A box of Triscuits is better than a homemade gift. Also, try to avoid anything too cliché like Adele's new album, gift cards, and bath products. We all have enough soaps and lotions. And we've all had enough Adele. Also, your mother does not need another picture of you in a frame, cute as you may be. Everyone thinks mothers love sentimental gifts, they don't. No one wants to be reminded of their job, especially not on their birthday (in this case, the job of being a mother). Mothers just want what everyone wants from a gift: a little thoughtfulness and a little luxury. And that doesn't mean spending a lot of money. I personally do not believe in expensive gifts. They tend to be impersonal. Something can be luxurious by simply being unexpected. Has she recently mentioned the title of a book she really wants to read? If you still can't think of anything, take a look through your mother's makeup bag. Is she running out of her favorite lipstick? You can't go wrong with buying someone their favorite beauty product. Shopping for our mothers is always difficult, but I have faith that if you avoid the things I mentioned, you'll be fine and she'll be very happy.

Happy birthday to your mom! 


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