Call For Help!

By Phil Plait | December 20, 2007 2:00 am

Way back in 2001, there was this channel called TechTV. And on this channel there was a show called "Call for Help". And on this show there was a host who was this major frakkin’ geek named Chris Pirillo. Regular BABlog readers (and those who haven’t been eating their bran too) know I have talked about Pirillo many times. He invited me to be on "Call for Help", and we became friends. I made four appearances on the show, I think it was.

So here I am today, finally cleaning my office at home, and lo, what do I find? A tape labeled "Call For Help". Hmmm. I pop it in the ol’ (and I do mean ol’) VCR, and this is what I found. I think it’s my first appearance on the show, from November 8, 2001. I look exactly the same as I did then, but I think Chris is taller.

I think I was talking too fast, but I was really enjoying myself.

For what it’s worth, I still have that shirt.


Comments (20)

  1. Michael Lonergan

    Uhhhh no. Please. No. Okay. I’m having a nightmare. *Michael slaps head. hard. Again. Harder.

    Oh God it’s real. Hey. That guy looks kind of like Jared, the Subway guy!

  2. Woot Phil! I had a feeling you were a Tech TV fan. Now that all the old Tech TV folks have moved on to IPTV (see, or for example) you should see about guest hosting one of those shows.

    I’d think that the folks hosting Tekzilla, or, would love to have you on. Hmm, maybe I should e-mail them about getting an interview with you.

    Viva la tech! Viva la science!

  3. John

    How annoying was Chris Pirillo? I hate it when clever people pretend they are stupid.

    Another thing – Phil looks as if he doesn’t age. In fact he looks younger now.

    What a guy!!!

  4. Brodie

    Definitely did not talk too fast.
    Phil, you are very effective at delivering a lot of info quickly, and with humor, without being an over emphatic spastic loon.

  5. Gary Ansorge

    Good comment on the micro G crystals in the nickel/iron. I read that sword smiths sought out such fine metal to create their weapons. Sky Iron, I think it was called,,,

    A single asteroid like that which formed Beringer Crater could build a lot of space based real estate. 100 meters in diameter?
    Wow! Dot’s a heavy space ball,,,or actually,,,massive,,,

    Good show, Phil!

    GAry 7

  6. Michelle

    …Britney Spears does Quantum Physics? Wait, what was that about?

    Great video!

  7. I thought Chris was funny — it’s slapstick. Not to everyone’s taste I suppose, but I liked it. That’s one reason I wanted to come back on the show; I thought we played off each other well. I had a lot of fun going on, but they always wanted me on a Thursday, which kinda sucked. The filming was from 2 – 3 p.m., and then I had to drive back north from the San Francisco studio. In SF, rush hour on Thursday starts at 2, so I always faced a two hour drive (it should have been about 1). Still, it was always a blast. I wish I could find tapes of the other three segments.

  8. CR

    “For what it‚Äôs worth, I still have that shirt.”

    Hey, cool, another guy who has shirts from many years ago… most of my wardrobe is about a decade old, and I actually have some vintage stuff from the 1980’s stored away someplace. (Time to clean out the storage place…)

  9. CR

    By the way, that was a fun little video. Nothing new, since it’s all been covered on this website, but it’s always fun seeing & hearing the man behind the words!

  10. Michael Lonergan

    What’s “Space Fungus?” Reminds me of an article I once read doing research for a nutritional study, “A Fungus Among Us.” Which i think would make a pretty good title for a Sci-Fi flick.

    Would You_Tube have the rest of these shows. BTW after I picked myself up off the floor, I really enjoyed it. (I still think he could pass for Jared, though.)

  11. Cello Man

    As far as looks go, he could pass for Jared. But his voice made him sound like the annoying waiter guy in ‘Office Space’.

    “Looks like someone’s got a case of the Mondays.”

  12. John

    I miss Techtv. I wish it would come back.

  13. Phil,

    You say that Austin Powers would be a pile of goo b/c of the expanding ice rupturing his cells. How come that doesn’t happen to frozen meat?

  14. I have fusion crust in my underwear.

  15. Brando

    Ha! We did that China impact shot from “Armageddon” over here at Digital Domain ūüėČ

  16. Andrew

    @ Jason

    The temperatures and methods involved are relevant.

    Note that this is still why A: improperly frozen meat is tough and B: it’s not recommended to refreeze anything (well, okay, that’s part of the reason)

  17. Wendy

    Educational! And I am feeling so old now….

  18. Nancy

    At least geek style never changes. Could have been from the 1960s.

  19. Rolf

    I’m from Denmark, and the only reason I know of TechTV is this clip:


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