I have gone Hollywood

By Phil Plait | January 22, 2010 7:30 am

[Kari, Grant, and Tory from The Mythbusters will be on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson tonight, so it seems like a good time to post this.]

In case anyone was wondering if I would succumb to the bright lights of Hollywood, the answer is, of course: duh.

Last week I attended a wonderful party in Pasadena, thrown by the Discovery Channel for their 25th anniversary (my pictures from the party are on Flickr). My friend Katherine Nelson secured an invite for me; she does PR for the channel and we met at Comic Con in 2008 when I was tagging along with My Close Personal Friend Adam Savage™. Last week I happened to be in LA working on my sooper sekrit project, and that timing happily coincided with the party.

I’m not used to high-end parties, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I decided to go all out and wear a tie. Go me.

I got to the hotel, located somewhere down twisty passages in Pasadena all of which look alike, and started wending my way to the party itself. As I randomly walked, I wondered to myself what celebs might be here, and at that very moment happened to see Ed Begley, Jr.

OK then.

When I finally reached the actual party location, I was happy to see Katherine taking pictures of Kari Byron, Grant Imahara, and Tory Belecci from Mythbusters! I hadn’t seen Kari in a couple of years (I moderated a panel with three of them in Canada), but I saw Grant and Tory at Comic Con last year. It was nice to see them again. I hung out a bit with them, and, as always, found them to be fun and charming and pretty much what you see on TV. At least, they’re nice enough to a dork like me.

There were lots of Discovery Network celebs there (as well as a giraffe). I was completely unashamed to horn in on Stacey and Clinton from "What Not to Wear" and chat for a second. I was thrilled to get a chance to talk with Annabelle Gurwitch, who is on Planet Green now, but I know her from watching "Dinner and a Movie" on TBS a few years ago, and she was exactly as I had hoped: funny and sassy and totally approachable. Also? A doll. There, I said it.

I also dorked a bit when I got a chance to say hi to Kat von D from "L.A. Ink", since she wasn’t in the shop the day I got my tattoo. It was totally cool to show her my tattoo (patience; my show is supposed to air next month) and thank her for the experience. We swapped a couple of stories, and I found she was like everyone else I met at the party: approachable, open, and interesting.

In fact, if there was any disappointment with the party (besides not being allowed to actually eat the cakes made by the bakery from "Cake Boss" and realizing after I had gotten back to my hotel that the Meteorite Men were there and I missed them) it was of the snarky variety; that is, no one was a jerk. I mean, c’mon! This was a Hollywood party! No cocaine? No obnoxious divas?

Could it be that the portrayal of Hollywood in Hollywood films has been Hollywooded? Hmmm.

So all in all it was a fabulous event with a lot of people having lots of fun. It makes me wonder… could it be that because there is a science bent to the networks (not all the shows, but many) the party was more about the fun and less about the personalities? Hmmm again.

Maybe not. But still. Science is cool.


Comments (32)

  1. Flavio

    Ok my little secret: I like Kari Grant & Tory segments more than the ones with Adam & Jaime ;p

  2. Cobey

    Geez remind me to wear nothing but black next time i’m in California. (p.s. where is it that cool people are shopping these days?? lol)

  3. Plutonium being from Pluto

    Congratulations! :-)

    Dr Phil Plait as far as I’m concerned you made it a lo-oong time ago but *Hollywood*, crikey, well done! :-)

  4. Matt

    It almost seems to me like Kari, Grant, and Tori are actually getting the more interesting myths lately. I almost have to wonder if Adam and Jamie aren’t getting pushed into the background.

  5. dang, was kinda hoping to see pix of Mike Rowe in there, but I’m guessing he was too busy scrubbing off the poo/soot/oil/poo/grease/grime/poo/dirt to make it to the party :)

  6. Dear Phil:

    Thank you for the mention and the enjoyable article about the Discovery Party. I am sorry we missed you to! We’ll plan better next time, okay?

    It really was an enjoyable event and, of course, Steve’s favorite part was meeting the Mythbusters’ crash test dummy. They got along very well : )

    Geoff of Meteorite Men

  7. Does this mean you will soon be represented by a giant blue CGI avatar?

  8. No obnoxious divas?

    You need to try harder next time, I guess. ^^

  9. Charlie Young

    Too fun! Party on, Phil!

  10. I was disappointed Mike Rowe wasn’t there — I’ve never met him, but he sang opera with my sister a while back. :) Funny, though, I had such a wonderful time I didn’t even think about stuff like that until I got back to my hotel.

  11. Pete

    One bit of advice for when you do get to meet Mike Rowe – don’t shake his hand……:)

  12. So the party took place in the Zork universe?

  13. You were in Pasadena and you didn’t stop in to say hi? For shame.

  14. Eric

    Would it be terrible to admit that it took me a full 10 seconds to realize that Grant was in that picture with Kari?

  15. You were in Pasadena and no-one thought to invite @wilw? He’ll be sad… :(

  16. Steve

    To Eric, #14.

    No, it wouldn’t be terrible. You weren’t the only one. By the way, did you check the rest of Phil’s photostream?

  17. Thomas Siefert

    Eric Said:
    Would it be terrible to admit that it took me a full 10 seconds to realize that Grant was in that picture with Kari?

    If Phil took the picture and the nose in the upper right hand corner is his, then he must have a really wide angle lens on his camera. :-)

  18. TWalker

    What fun!

    …didn’t you also write a book? (see, I helped you!)

  19. Wooster

    the answer is, of course: duh.

    Why duh? Just never got the whole “Hollywood is teh awesome” thing. Anyone wishing to make a great films gets as far away as they can from the place. It’s described by many as the place where good ideas go to die, Phil, so protect whatever it is you’re developing carefully.

    The time to really worry is when Mike Rowe *is* there working with the catering company. 😉

  20. Canada Jeff

    You talked to Stacey and Clinton wearing *that* tie?! Wow.

    Kidding – I’m just jealous. Congrats on hitting the even bigger big time Phil!

  21. Since when is Pasadena “Hollywood?” As a former Pasadena resident, I enjoyed the separation, as well as the close proximity, depending on the night of the week.

    Still, looks like a fun time.

  22. Mister Earl

    Were the knuckleheads from the more woo-oriented shows there? Like ghost hunters or detectives or whatever? It still burns me that they have the gall to call their “ghost-hunting” “science based”.

  23. Oh man, I can see the stars in your eyes there, Phil.

    Looks like a fun time!

  24. I love What Not To Wear! I want a little pocket-sized Clinton to carry around with me everywhere.

    Sounds like a lot of fun. And yes, I’d say that the Discovery network is less bent towards drama and drugs in part because of its scientific nature.

  25. Christine P.

    Gee Phil, name-drop much? 😉 Seriously, though, it sounds like an awesome good time. I’d been wondering what the story was with the tattoo and forgot to ask at AAS. Looking forward to seeing the result. Be sure to give us a heads up on your blog so we faithful readers don’t miss that episode.

  26. Looks like you had a fun time, Phil. Hope you don’t let all this star stalking go to your head 😉

    Yeah, I’m just jealous.

  27. 25. Christine P. Says:

    Gee Phil, name-drop much?

    At least he cleans up after himself (or does he get Mike Rowe to do it? That would be an interesting episode!)



  28. ccpetersen

    Geesh Phil, You and I were in Pasadena at the same time last week and didn’t know it? MY Hollywood party was up at Griffith and they were filming for a project that airs in March.

    Looks like you had a great time!

  29. 10. Phil Plait Says: “I was disappointed Mike Rowe wasn’t there — I’ve never met him, but he sang opera with my sister a while back. ”

    Mike interviewed me about eight years ago when he was still doing “Evening Magazine” on KPIX, the local CBS affiliate in San Francisco. They came out to our club launch field to shoot the “wraps” for one program (that’s the host segments that go in between the prepared stories). I got my 59 seconds of fame in the show.

    I can say that the Mike Rowe you see on DJ and other places is exactly the way he is. There was no change in that pleasant demeanor when the camera stopped rolling. In fact, his best jokes happen off camera.

    Some video of the wraps on our club site:


    – Jack

  30. Alexrkr

    Damn I work in Pasadena! Glad you had fun, love to meet the Mythbusters some day.

    (Kari….. drool….)

  31. Gary Ansorge

    22. Mister Earl

    “It still burns me that they have the gall to call their “ghost-hunting” “science based”.

    I’ve only watched a couple of their shows(hey, I was bored and there was no SciFi on) but as far as I know, they’ve never claimed to have found ANY evidence for ghosts, though they do tend to end their shows with a caveat that “maybe next time. Tune in to find out.” Which is maybe one way to keep the science disadvantaged coming back for more,,,and maybe, just MAYBE a few will conclude there ain’t no such things as ghosts.

    Changing minds requires, first, that you can get your audience to hold still long enough to hear and keep them from putting their fingers in their ears and going “LA, LA,LA,LA,LA”.


    You said fabulous? FABULOUS??? Wow! That’s SOOO HollyWeed,,,er, I mean wood.

    No cocaine? I guess you didn’t check out the toilet seat lids??? ( I expect most entertainment types have finally discovered that SOMETIMES the government tells the truth,,,that crap really CAN kill you. Though as far as I can find, the death rate from pot overdoses is still,,ZERO.)

    Gary 7

    PS. Phil, please tell me your show will be available on Hulu. I no longer have the boob tube.

  32. Travis

    Kari was smoking Hawt! Last night. Man! Nice to see her get back to that shape (with improvements!) only six months after having the baby.

    Grant’s talk about sex robots was funny as well.


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