We’re not too daunted to inform comic Loni Love that she’s in for a letdown if she’s expecting cable cars or residents whistling the theme from the Rice-A-Roni ad on her first visit to San Francisco.
The regular "Chelsea Lately" panelist — who appears Friday on a bill with Nene Leakes from "The Real Housewives of Atlanta" and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence at the first Comedy in the Castro — will likely get a good reception.
That’s because Love enjoys "open-minded" audiences of all types of people — women, gays and Republicans, among others.
"You’ll even see gangsters in the back," she says.
Love, who basically covers five topics in her act — her weight, popular entertainers, politics, hope for the world and relationships — says her comedy influences include Whoopi Goldberg, Rita Rudner and Bill Maher.
She got her start back in college in Prairie View, Texas, when, being broke, she entered a contest and won $50 for her funny submission.
"I really just made something up, about how college sucked," she says. "I was amazed that somebody wanted to pay to hear my story."
From there, the electrical engineering student continued with school and did comedy on the side.
She moved to Southern California and became a project engineer for Xerox in El Segundo, at least in part because the character Fred Sanford in the sitcom "Sanford and Son" talked about the place.
She didn’t make the switch to full-time comedy until after she earned an open call spot — she was No. 253 in line — for an HBO comedy special and came out on top with a story about how when she went to Korea, she was treated well because people there thought she was Aretha Franklin.
Today, she’s looking forward to her first hourlong Comedy Central special in which she again will do what she does best: "Be real."
Where: Castro Theatre, 429 Castro St., S.F.
When: 8:30 p.m. Friday
Tickets: $25 to $35
Contact: (415) 392-4499, www.cityboxoffice.com