I slept in late one day, and when I woke up I decided that I was going to spend the day in Hollywood doing Hollywood things, like being part of a live studio audience for a late night talk show. I did a quick Google search and found free tickets to Jimmy Kimmel Live on 1iota.com. There wasn’t a guarantee that I would get into the show, but if I arrived early enough and kept the faith, there was a good chance I’d make the cut.
The taping didn’t start until 4 p.m., so I decided to spend the late morning at the Griffith Observatory. Admission is free, and it’s a great place to explore. I remember going there as a kid and watching a show in the Samuel Oschin Planetarium. And I remember buying a pack of Griffith Observatory pencils with metallic streamers as a souvenir. I also remembered that the observatory is named after Griffith J. Griffith, which still cracks me up today.
I did a grab-and-go lunch from the Café at the End of the Universe and decided to eat it outside on one of the trails surrounding the observatory and facing the Hollywood sign.
After lunch and lounging on the Griffith grounds, I headed to Hollywood Boulevard. Jimmy Kimmel Live is taped at the El Capitan Theater, so I thought it would be fun to stop by The Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, which is next to the theater, and treat myself to a cocktail (or two). The hotel is a trendy L.A. spot, and it’s where Marilyn Monroe lived for a few years. (I hear it’s a haunted hotel!)
I grabbed a seat at the bar and ordered up a Roosevelt Mule from a friendly bartender, a New York native who came out to the West Coast for the weather. I got an excellent lesson in mixology from the bartender, who told me that the Roosevelt Mule was just a Moscow Mule. And he told me if I were to make it at home, I needed to get good ginger beer and needed to make sure I “spanked” the mint leaves hard to get all the oils out.
The cocktail was so good that I got another one, but I took this one out to the pool, where I did some people watching. For a minute I felt like I was in an episode of “The Hills” or some other California reality show. There were young folks straight out of an Urban Outfitters catalog lounging in the chairs in front of me. The sun was shining, people were chatting and laughing, and it was a nice scene to be a part of.
The second cocktail left me feeling GREAT (um, buzzed), and after I took the last sip, I moseyed out of the hotel and walked over to El Capitan. Perfect timing. There was already a line forming outside the theater, and I hopped right in at the same moment a Jimmy Kimmel staffer came down to check for tickets. I pulled my ticket out, they scanned the code, and I got a green paper wristband slapped on my arm, which was a sign that I made the cut.
Surprisingly I didn’t have to wait that long to get in. The line moved pretty quickly, and in less than 30 minutes we were in the lobby of the theater. And then a few minutes later, we were being seated and getting prepped for the taping with lessons on how to laugh and clap.
“If it sounds like it’s a joke, then it’s a joke. So just laugh as hard as you can.”
The guests for the show were Pierce Brosnan, Greta Gerwig, and Alice Russell. The guy I was seated next to (who happened to be a studio guitarist) went to school with Greta Gerwig and had friends in Alice Russell’s band. Apparently it was like a Sacramento State mini-reunion.
It was really cool to see Jimmy Kimmel in action. But what I loved the most was watching him in between takes as he riffed with the band, the guests, and the audience. He’s a smart guy with an exceptionally quick wit, and I almost wish we had more time to see and hear him off camera. He’s even funnier without a script.
The guest interviews were good. I didn’t realize how great of a painter Pierce Brosnan was, and I thought Greta Gerwig was quirky and funny. But, boy, that Alice Russell was absolutely amazing. Her voice is full of soul and rock, and I like her groovy, hip-swaying sound. I’d never heard of her until then, and now I’m obsessed.
So unfortunately the full episode isn’t available on Hulu or ABC anymore, but you can definitely see me in this You Tube clip from the show. It’s Jimmy’s pedestrian question segment, and the question for the night was, “Do you eat your boogers?” Of course I would make my television appearance during the one segment that points out how gross little kids can be. And for your information, yes, I clapped and cheered and yelled out, “Yeah, duh! That kid eats his/her boogers!” each time the question was asked.
Please do check out the clip. I’m in a pink and white striped dress at the bottom of the screen. But don’t look away, or else you’ll miss me!
And below are just a few snapshots from my Hollywood adventure…