My First Celebrity Encounter

We were probably in LA for about a week and were hanging out at Barney’s Beanery on Santa Monica Boulevard. I can’t remember if this is before or after my crepe place firing but definitely around the same time. My brother, sister, friend and I are sitting at the bar and I started looking around because I’m nosey, and sitting at one of the tables is Billy Idol. This was 1990 and he had a string of hits in the 80s and although I wasn’t a huge fan of his music, I thought he was pretty cool with his platinum blonde bad boy image. One of the guys in my neighborhood had the song “White Wedding” as his wedding song. How’s that for white trash?

So what did I do? I walked right over to him.  It didn’t matter to me that he was being interviewed by some magazine. This was a real celebrity and there was no way I wasn’t going to say something. God, I was such an idiot when I look back, and a ballsy idiot at that. I stopped right in front of his table and said “Hi, I just wanted to tell you that I’m a big fan of your music.” Why did I lie to Billy Idol? I don’t know, what else was I gonna say? “Hey, I don’t really like your music, but you’re a celebrity and I’m a star-struck weirdo.” He was really nice and he smiled and said thank you and that was pretty much it. My sister and brother couldn’t believe I did it. I really can’t either now.

After you live in LA for awhile, celebrities just aren’t that interesting anymore. Sure, it’s always fun to see them somewhere, but you get used to it and everyone knows you don’t speak to them for Christ sake! But obviously that’s something you learn as you go because I would never tell Billy Idol now that I love his music, especially since he doesn’t make records anymore. Or does he? Last I remember him was in “The Wedding Singer” with Adam Sandler.

I also saw Quentin Tarantino in Barney’s too. Apparently he likes to hang out there and has a favorite booth where he supposedly wrote Pulp Fiction.  By that time, I had learned not to talk to celebrities which was good because who knows what I might have said. “Was that creepy gimp scene in Pulp Fiction really necessary? Did Ving Rhames enjoy filming that? Did Bruce Willis bring his own gag ball?”

It’s also supposedly the place where Janis Joplin had her last drink before she died and Jim Morrison got thrown out for peeing on the bar. I like the Doors but Jim Morrison really turned out to be an asshole, didn’t he?

The movie about The Doors came out in 1991 and their music was being played all the time so their songs always remind me of my early days in LA, even though I remember listening to them at basement parties when I was growing up. Keep in mind those parties weren’t in my basement, it’s not like we had a good basement for parties if you know what I mean. However, our keg parties in the funeral home when we were teenagers became legendary.

More on that to come.

Have a decent Tuesday!



About Death To Hollywood

My name is Celeste Donohue and I am a writer/comedian who started this blog to tell stories about my life growing up in a funeral home and my adult life which I have spent in Hollywood, California – hence the name, “Death To Hollywood”. Hopefully, you like to read those kinds of stories. If not, go read something serious and boring.....
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6 Responses to My First Celebrity Encounter

  1. klpeach says:

    funny story cee. it would have been great to see tarantino wandering around barney’s with a gag ball in his mouth….you know, really feeling his characters dilemma.

  2. Kris says:

    Great pictures too….love the gag ball!
    I had forgotten about Billy Idol…..thanks for the memory:)

  3. Billy Idol says:

    Christ, I don’t get to eat much at restaurants these days. The money ain’t flowing in like it used to, y’know? So I just spend a whole lotta time in my cradle of love dancin’ with myself, if you know what I mean…

    But if I ever see ya at a restaurant, I’ll come up and tell you how much I like yer blog!

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