Life Style

Afterparty king Joel Kim Booster tells us how to have the best Sunday in L.A.


In Sunday Funday, L.A. people give us a play-by-play of their ideal Sunday around town. Find ideas and inspiration on where to go, what to eat and how to enjoy life on the weekends.

When Joel Kim Booster meditates on the current chapter of his life, he gets the sense he’s in a personal era of new beginnings.

The writer-comedian-actor’s hunch is understandable considering the myriad of professional and personal milestones that occurred for him in 2022. Booster debuted his feature film “Fire Island” on Hulu, which he wrote and starred in. The adaptation reimagines “Pride and Prejudice” as a modern queer rom-com for the ages.

“I sort of burned it all down in 2022, in a good way, in the best possible way. It was the biggest year of my life, both personally and professionally,” says Booster, who describes the time as a constant stream of dopamine hits.

His comedy special “Psychosexual” also dropped on Netflix, he co-starred in the Apple TV+ series “Loot” opposite Maya Rudolph and Michaela Jaé Rodriguez, and on the romance end, he and his boyfriend — a union that marks Booster’s first relationship — met each other’s families over the holidays.

While getting to see his creative labor come to fruition has been exciting, Booster acknowledges that being booked and busy can certainly take its toll on the body. These days, two self-care practices, in particular, help shed the stress: high movie nights at home with his boyfriend and going to the gym.

“The gym is a really big source of comfort for me. It feels like maybe one of the only areas of my life that I can control completely,” Booster says, elaborating on the uncertainty of working in the entertainment industry, from which projects move forward to the types of roles you get to take on. “And then on the other side of the equation, I really enjoy getting high. Sinking into the couch underneath a gravity blanket with a joint in hand, while watching a movie with my boyfriend, is my happiest place. That’s the most beautiful part of living in Los Angeles.”

Now, with Booster back in work mode, his sights are set on laying the groundwork for another bountiful year. “This year really feels like sophomore year for me. Even though I’ve been working in this industry for the better part of a decade, ‘Fire Island’ felt like my introduction to the big leagues,” reflects Booster. “I’ve got my bearings and I have to figure out what the next project is. That’s the scariest part about this year for me, looking ahead and deciding what I want that next big thing to be.”

Here, Booster takes us on a journey of how he’d spend an ideal Sunday in Los Angeles. This interview has been lightly edited and condensed for length and clarity.

10 a.m.: Enjoy the rain indoors

If I had my way, my ideal Sunday would begin with a rainy morning and clear up by the afternoon. It’s such an invitation to stay in bed and not do or go anywhere. I love the weather in L.A., but there’s something about the sunshine and good weather that automatically guilts you into not staying inside.

10:15 a.m.: Dive into the “Real Housewives” multiverse from bed

Unfortunately I’m at this age and point in my life where my body refuses to let me sleep past 10 a.m., no matter how late I’ve been up the night before.

So I’m usually in bed by myself essentially, with my sleeping boyfriend next to me, for a couple of hours until he wakes up. Sunday mornings are when I usually catch up on “Housewives” and all the shows he doesn’t want to watch. I treasure those hours of alone time so deeply. Our media diets are so intertwined now that, like, infidelity for us has nothing to do with sex and has everything to do with television. If I were to watch one of our shows without him I would be in deep sh—.

12 p.m.: Find the breakfast burrito of the day

I am a Postmates warrior, an Uber Eats warrior. I love to open up that app and figure out a new spot to see what kind of breakfast burrito we can find from the farthest reaches of L.A., along with the strongest cold brew I can find. We just had a great breakfast burrito from Sweet Butter Kitchen. I really loved their steak breakfast burrito, it was excellent.

1:30 p.m.: Off to the beach

I’m a former New Yorker, and as a New Yorker you’re always searching for reasons to get out of your house because it’s so small and there are so many interesting things to do around the city. Whereas in L.A. I find for me it’s about curating your circle of friends so specifically that you can exist outside of public spaces.

Not that there aren’t a million things to do in L.A. on a Sunday, but for me, I just want to be around my people. Usually that manifests in some sort of house party, whether it’s a pool party or just a gathering, a game day — we’re big game people. We love a game night.

The best version of a Sunday Funday I can imagine would be having energy to head over to the Westside for a beach day. Ginger Rogers Beach, the gay beach here in L.A., is the best gay bar in L.A. to me. You’re sort of towel to towel, body to body, on a good day when it’s packed. It’s like seeing everybody that you’re normally so used to seeing in nightlife, in the daytime, out in nature by the f— ocean. It’s really wonderful and it’s social and great.

Everyone brings their Bluetooth speaker and there’s a cacophony of different styles of music that you’re sort of battling with the entire day. On one side, it’s your standard pop, it’s Ariana Grande, Lady Gaga. There’s house music playing on the other side of you, there’s EDM playing somewhere else, you get it all on the beach there. People really get aggravated by it, but for me, I think that mish-mash of sounds is part of what I love about that beach-going experience.

Ideally, I’ll be at the beach until the sun has practically set. It is the perfect mix for me of the private and the public. I’ll spend a couple of hours with my book on my own on my towel, some sort of science fiction or a George Saunders short story. I’ll get up and socialize, I’ll go back to the book. We’re drinking, we’re having fun, we’re dancing. It’s sort of a mix of all the parts of L.A. that I love in one place. I just wish it were a little bit more accessible for me.

6 p.m.: Group dinner

It’s time to grab dinner at this point. It’s fun to gather together a hodgepodge crew of people that are meandering away from the beach into one big annoying table at some restaurant nearby that we’ve decided on. I love the experience of cramming as many of my friends into a meal as possible at a restaurant. I know it’s annoying and I know people hate it, but it is one of my favorite things to do.

I really love Genghis Cohen. It reminds me of the kind of Chinese food that I grew up eating in the Midwest. It’s very much not authentic but it is, to me, so comforting, and the atmosphere is great for a big group of people. There’s nothing I crave more after a day spent on the beach thinking about not snacking than Chinese food.

I’ve been good. People saw my body in a Speedo for the last six hours and now I’m ready to destroy it all in one meal at Genghis Cohen. When it comes to dessert, my rule of thumb is always look, no matter if you think you feel like it or not. About half the time, I’ll see something on the dessert menu and suddenly realize I want it.

8:45 p.m.: Dance it out at Hot Dog Sundays

I’m a notorious peer pressure fiend in terms of continuing the party. I want it to go on as long as possible. There’s a party that happens in Silver Lake every Sunday. It’s called Hot Dog at El Cid. It is my favorite Sunday activity, bar none. I love it so much. They serve hot dogs if you’re still hungry. They have amazing disco house music going on indoors, and then outdoors it’s just a sea of all of your favorite people chatting. And one of my favorite vintage shops does a pop-up at this party and I spend way too much. How long I stay depends on how my Monday looks, but let’s say it’s a holiday weekend. I would close the place down quite honestly. They close at 11 — I’m closing it down, I’m there until they kick us out.

11:30 p.m.: The afterparty

Sometimes against my better judgment — and it is always a bad idea, but at the same time it’s the best idea — is the afterparty. It’s my favorite part of L.A. nightlife culture. Our bars don’t stay open very late comparatively, especially coming from New York. And so you really have to dig into this network of people who own homes that are willing to open them up for an afterparty. For me, now that I’m a somewhat new homeowner, hosting the afters is my favorite thing about having a house.

My afterparties, especially if they’re happening on a Sunday, are like the oddest assortment of people that I’m very close to and then people that I’ve never met in my entire life who I’m connecting with for the first time on my porch, sharing a cigarette. Which I shouldn’t be doing and I only do when offered by a stranger, basically. It’s like the best way to connect. I have an amazing view on my back porch and there’s nothing I enjoy more than meeting a new person over a cigarette at an afterparty on my back porch.

3:30 a.m.: The wind-down

It’s a nice slow trickle until I finally hit my limit and kick everyone out. There’s a full decompression mode that has to happen and usually that involves watching one to two episodes of “Shark Tank” with my boyfriend. It is our biggest guilty-pleasure show. We cannot get enough of “Shark Tank.” It’s kind of embarrassing but we love it. Next, I do a full skincare routine and then bed.

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