A Regular Hollywood Evening

I didn’t watch the Emmys Sunday night since I was at a family party to celebrate the birthdays of two cousins, but was well informed by Twitter as to the winners, the losers, the outfits, and what YouTube videos I would have to watch in the morning.

Aside from Jim Parson’s win for The Big Bang Theory, I was unmoved by the results.  Though I felt Lost deserved more recognition for its stellar 6th season, I wasn’t all that surprised it lost, and in most other categories, I simply didn’t care about the outcome.

At least this year the internet-wide consensus (and if the internet comes to a consensus, you know it’s true) is that the academy rewarded stellar performances, instead of simply handing out statues to names for the sake of the name.  It would be a nice trend to continue.

The nature of celebrity has always puzzled me. I’d love to claim I’m above it all, that I don’t care about famous people – and to a large degree that’s true. I don’t get starstruck with actors, they’re too commonplace in my neighborhood. Though I do like spotting them. (It’s like bird-watching.)

I admit that I love to know when actors are in relationships, but I attribute that to the romantic in me. I’d like to believe that I’d be equally interested in the personal lives of ‘ordinary’ people if I knew their sordid tales, though I probably wouldn’t.

Thing is, the concept of celebrity has got us all thinking that we know these so-called stars on an intimate level. I had a dream the other night that Alison Scagliotti from Warehouse 13 was my best friend. (Which would be awesome, because she’s awesome.) Why shouldn’t we be interested in who celebs are dating – they’re practically family! Simply because they perform on our screens, we feel protective of them, like we have some claim to them, and that causes a distortion of reality.

So it’s really weird when the line is blurred even more, and you actually transition from fan to friend.

Friday night I went to Meltdown Comics for a panel on Writing for Genre Television. I went particularly for the chance to meet Javier Grillo-Marxuach (or ‘Javi’ to everyone he knows) face to face. This is the man behind The Middleman, and a former writer-producer for Lost and Medium, among many other credits.

And he was following me on Twitter.

Not only was he following me on Twitter, but he’d added me on Facebook, and had written on my Wall! I couldn’t believe it. We’d never met; what made me worthy?

This Friday night panel was a perfect opportunity to meet the man face-to-face after a few internet exchanges. I wasn’t expecting much from the encounter – hopefully I’d get the chance to tell him how much I loved the show, and maybe name drop a few of my Shout! Factory co-workers.

Instead, I showed up to Meltdown early, and he recognized me. Though obviously busy, we stood talking for a minute – about my recent trip to Israel, of all things – and then another man approached. He and Javi greeted each other like old friends, and right away Javi introduced me.

“Ashley Miller, Megan Christopher.”

I shook hands with the eponymous Ashley Miller, assuming he was an old friend who’d come for the evening’s entertainment and support.

Until he sat down at the roundtable, and it was announced that he was Ashley Miller, writer for The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Fringe, and…Thor.

Yeah. That Thor.

So there I was, waiting for the panel to begin, thinking about the fact that little old me had just been introduced to a screenwriter as a peer, or at least a normal human being, when a man came up behind me.

“Anyone ever tell you you look like Megan Christopher?” he asked.

My jaw dropped, and I looked at him with all the incredulity I possessed. My first assumption was that this was someone I was supposed to recognize, an old classmate perhaps whom I hadn’t seen in over a decade, who had magically managed to spot me across the room and decided to take a reunion into his own hands.

“Well, uh, that’s my name,” I said, still flabbergasted. I didn’t recognize him at all, and I may not have been good at names, but I was still good with faces.

“I know,” the stranger replied. “I read your blog.”

Cue the funny sound effect.

“Are you serious?” I said, seriously certain he wasn’t serious. “No one’s ever recognized me from my blog before!”

As flattered as I was, I held onto a certain amount of skepticism, just in case this was a YouTube prank. But no, he really was a blogger I’d never met who just so happened to recognize me, the same way I recognized Eureka EP Amy Berg who was in the audience.

I think it was the approach that threw me so thoroughly. Has anyone ever told you you look like Megan Christopher? As if looking like me was something to aspire to.

And two minutes later, Twitter alerted me to an @ reply:

“Just @hollywoodjane at Meltdown.”

Apparently, I was so awesome, meeting me was worth tweeting about! This was all such a shock. I mean, I fully intended to be worthy of that sort of recognition in ten, fifteen years, with a couple of published books on my CV, but certainly didn’t think I’d done anything worthy of notice yet.

This was a wake-up call. It was time to stop thinking of myself as a teenage fan. If the last year has taught me anything, it’s possible to be a fan of something without having to take a submissive position. I’m approaching a quarter of a century on Earth, and I have to stop waiting for the moment that establishes me as a legitimate adult. I am an adult. And maybe, just maybe, I’m starting to leave my own mark on the world.

This article has 3 Comments

  1. I love that man. I met him working the Geek Elite panel at SCMS and still can’t get over that shock. I am so happy for you!

  2. That’s really cool, and funny. Have you perfected your autograph yet? You need to be ready for all that book signing :)

    Celebrity is such a weird thing. I know celebrities are people just like everyone else, but that didn’t stop me from telling EVERYONE when I saw Tom Cruise in New York City. It just seemed like such a special, exciting event (this was before his drop in popularity related to his couch-jumping and anti-depressants bashing). And my brother keeps a list (or at least he did, during his first year living in Hollywood) of the celebrities he’s seen. It is like bird-watching!

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