I’ve met a total of 3 famous people in my life, not counting bands/artists I’ve met at music festivals (shoutout to you, Warped Tour ’06!). Steven Tyler signed my camo shorts after an Aerosmith show when I was 13 and I sang onstage with Green Day at 18 – two amazing experiences I’ll never forget – but my third brush with celebrity was awesomely unexpected: I had dinner with McLovin in my small Texas town.
You know him. You love him. He’s McLovin, after all. If you were of age in the late 2000s (or watched salacious slacker comedies without your parents’ permission), you definitely remember Fogell, the B.A. with the fake ID in Judd Apatow’s modern comedic classic, Superbad, starring Jonah Hill, Michael Cera, and Seth Rogan. The cult hero was brought to life by talented actor, Christopher Mintz-Plasse. He was in a string of hit movies a few years back (e.g. This Is the End, Fright Night, Role Models, Neighbors) as well as the occasional raunchy internet video alongside Dave Franco.
But did you know that McLovin is also a drummer in a cool rock band?
That’s right! The Young Rapscallions is the name of McLovin’s band and they’re pretty legit. Not sure which subgenre of rock aptly describes their sound, but they’d fit right in with the 2000s Warped crew, complete with swirling guitars, tight bass lines, and punchy growls.
Cut to me.
I tried my hand at acting during the summer of 2012 by participating in a short that was written and directed by two local sibling filmmakers that graciously offered me the opportunity to audition and, ultimately, gave me the part of the film’s brooding lead. While I don’t see any celluloid in my future, the experience of having been part of this project was so much fun. My friends’ (the filmmakers) production company was then in its infancy and by the winter they ventured into the live promotion industry and booked the Young Rapscallions to play a show at local Laredo bar, Average Joe’s. (By the way: it is extremely rare for a Hollywood celebrity to ever pass through Laredo – a small city on the U.S.-Mexico border with a total of 4 Wal-Marts – which is what makes this experience all the more amusing).
Guess who was invited to the show and the preceding dinner? Yep, yours truly was going to have dinner with a working Hollywood actor before the end of the week. Of course, I popped in my Superbad DVD because I mean…
The night had arrived.
The night finally came. I met up with my friends (basically all 6 people that had worked on the short) at a local barbecue joint where the band was going to meet us. We had a private room in the back of the restaurant reserved. I wore khakis and a thermal; it was chilly out. My friends and I chatted about the wonderfully random fact that we were about to meet/hang out with McLovin over dinner. We were told the guys wanted barbecue since Texas is famous for it. Though, I think Mexican would have given them a more authentically Laredo experience, but whatever. After about 45 minutes or so, they arrived in their van. The Young Rapscallions (and their manager) filed inside.
There he was – McLovin himself, Christopher Mintz-Plasse. To say I wasn’t at least a little bit star-struck would be a lie. I always try to play it cool though when I meet famous people, it’s just – this guy was just on my TV. “What’s up man, how’s it goin?” Laid-back, slightly nasally California drawl. I don’t remember what I said.
We made our introductions and sat down at the table. Chris (McLovin) sat a few chairs down from me. I sat next to bassist, Taylor Messersmith. The guys were all really cool and down-to-earth which made for a very pleasant experience. They asked us about what fun things there were to do in Laredo, which genuinely gave us a chuckle. They spoke about being from Tarzana (L.A.) and how stoked they were to be starting their month-long club tour right here. The guys seemed to really enjoy the chopped briscuit and sweetcorn. My two female “costars” that I’d acted alongside in the short really kept the conversations flowing. After we got done eating, the selfie-ing began. I was phoneless at this particular moment in history. Of course.
Word spreads fast in Laredo. A flock of people were gathered outside the restaurant waiting for us (well, for McLovin). Not going to lie, I felt pretty VIP. I guess they thought I was part of the entourage because seldom are people this excited to see me. Apparently, a guy in the crowd recognized me from the gym and approached me the following days. The guys followed us in their van to the bar venue that was just a few blocks up the road. My friends and I helped the guys prep for the show, which was set to begin at like 11 or 12. The band was great.