Well it’s been a busy week for NaltsConsulting (more on that name soon), which includes a lot of NYC networking at Onfronts, NewFronts, Diggnation, and this Friday’s OMMA.
So let’s recap the most awkward moments so far (although perhaps we can top these on Friday). The common thread is that I can’t resist being immature, and I’m also really, really, really awkward with famous people. This is why “web stars” really shouldn’t be allowed to meet people they admire.
Now that I mention it, I’m not sure which is more uncomfortable. Being the victim of awkward staring at the YouTube events (7/11/09 12:00-4:00 in NYC peeps). Or getting all excited seeing someone famous and then walk away feeling like such an idiot.
So here they are: The most awkward moments of the week:
1. Being on a NewFront panel with Tom Green, and doing a pratfall (see photo) that everyone thought was an accident. Getting nasty looks from one of the organizers, who said Tom Green was more mature than Nalts. Hey- it was a Tom Green show! Am I not supposed to make fake fart sounds while Faith Ford speaks?
2. Being on InternetWeek’s podcast by Shira Lazer with Paula Deen, and later asking Deen if “Santa Claus” was with her. “Yes, that’s my husband” (see video). Whoops. Sorry, Paula.
3. Seeing Shira Lazer at OnFronts last night (two days later). Thinking she was someone else, I started a hug and then kinda backed off. Is that the most awkward thing ever? It’s a curse of being from New Orleans, where everyone hugs. People think you’re creepy.
4. Thinking that Placevine’s Greg Neichin was actually Tilzy’s Joshua Cohen, and thanking him for inviting me to his event. “It’s not my event,” Neichin says. “I’m just a sponsor.” “Oh yeah,” I reply. “It’s just that you have such, um, top billing that it feels like it’s a Placevine event.” A quick recovery that I doubt worked, especially if Neichin reads this.
5. Monday night in bed. Wifeofnalts says: “My sisters and neighbors mentioned something about a video of you crawling on stage in your underwear.” “Oh yes,” I reply with a “got-caught-with-hand-in-cookie-jar look. “I did get permission first, and I wasn’t wearing grape smugglers.” “Well I just think it’s weird that you didn’t mention it, and I heard about it from neighbors first.” Yeah, I can see that point. If you’d like to see the actual Diggnation show (with my stage-crash as broadcast) zip to 19:00 into this Diggnation Live NYC video.
6. Illeana Douglas was asked by an audience member where she got her shoes. “Are you gay?” she responded. Later I took a picture of her shoes with my hat, and she gave me one of those looks I’m getting used to. In fairness, she was about as normal as they come, and I loved her position on studios of the future. She sees them like independent films where actors get a cut. She’s also smart to get Ikea sponsorship upfront, and spoke really highly of Ikea (as contrasted with answering to studio executives).
7. As someone who doesn’t watch Heroes, I talked to Milo Ventimiglia for 10 minutes thinking he was some web producer. Then he mentions Heroes, and I figure he had some cameo as a corpse or something. Later I would mistake an assistant of Craig Brewer (who I also didn’t know) with Milo. Lesson- read bios for everyone not just the panel moderator.
8. Talking to Grace last night (MyDamnChannel’s Daily Grace) and realize that I probably came across as creepy because I kept complimenting her MC style. She was cool, funny and managed to get some energy from a dead room. See her vlog about the event (here’s her preparing for it) because she actually did part from stage.
9. Getting improv comedy insights from Grace and Michelle (both who are improv comics) and realizing that I need to stop thinking about improv or just do it. I do like this new one: “don’t ask a question.” I’ve known about the “yes” strategy (never contradict the other improv comedian). But you can’t ask questions because you should know the answer.
10. Telling all the new studio CEOs about my silly www.epicdigitalstudioaward.com (kinda a spoof of the Webby’s), and having very few understand the joke. I guess they’re worried about finding advertisers and becoming profitable, which I think is SO 2008. When MyDamnChannel’s CEO Rob Barnett looks perplexed about it, DavidJr (who attends every one of these with his shiny belt buckle) says, why didn’t you just call it the “Bullshit Digital Studio Awards?”
And you know what? DavidJr is right. And even more awkward that me. Damnit.