Meeting your heroes is a tricky thing. On one hand, it's really freakin' cool getting to see your idol in person, but on the other hand, you might have to come to terms with the fact that they aren't as wonderful as you think. You begin to realize that they are simply humans, and every human comes with their flaws.
u/Couch_Licker asked: What is your "never meet your heroes" story?
Yikes. How gross.
Travelled 3 hours with a few friends of mine to watch an independent author (36m) on his speaking tour when we were 14. He'd just released a book about his sex addiction, but his other books were just about his life and I loved him. When he found out we'd travelled so far, he started asking about how we got there and I told him my sister (34) drove us.
I tried to tell him that he inspired me and I was so happy to meet him; all he did was ask if my sister was hot. Told him she was in a long term committed relationship and all he could say was "I don't mind". Discovered dude was just gross and never bought another of his books.
Steve Buscemi is a treasure.Giphy
I realized that celebrities were normal people when I saw Steve Buscemi drop salad in his lap in a Burger King near Bob Hope Airport.
What a mean mailman.
Not me, but my 4 yo daughter. She loves mailmen, she insists that she really wants to be one when she grows up, she's even planning to be a mailman for Halloween. She stops every mailman she sees to shower them with questions, and most have been kind and patient with this weird kid stopping them to ask questions.
Until two days ago, when one told her to go away. She's been deflated for the whole two days.
This one is SHOCKING.
Tried to talk to Bill Nye at the USA Science & Engineering Festival when I was in middle school and he was a total asshole to both me and his two assistants. Rolled his eyes at me, was very snarky when I asked for an autograph and tried to tell him that he was the reason I had decided to apply to a science magnet high school.
I was totally shocked and it was all I could do to hold in my tears until I turned away.
He would appreciate that story.Giphy
I was told that as a kid I met Ryan Reynolds on the street once with my parents and he tried talking to me and I told him to go away he's now one of my favourite actors.
You're his "never meet your hero".
Oh, this one is fun...
I went to a Blondie concert a few years ago and was allowed to go backstage with my friend who was with a talent marketing agency.
Debbie Harry was there talking to some people from the band, and we didn't want to disturb her, so my friend asks one of the guys in the band if he could be in a picture with him instead. I had a pretty nice camera with me. This was nearly a couple of decades ago, so it was a camera with a roll of film inside.
The guy in the band was fine with it, so I took the picture with my friend and the band member in the foreground, and Debbie in the background.
As soon as I took the picture, Debbie f**king exploded on me! I explained the situation but she just freaked out and told me she'd call the cops if I didn't give her the film roll in my camera rightaway and did I want to go to jail!?! I asked what she thought the cops would send me to jail for. She just pushed the decibels up one level and just repeated "Give it to me! Give me the f**king film roll!" over and over.
At this point, I'm thinking – yes – this used to be Debbie Harry, but right now she's just some crazy person, and I do have the option of just not interacting with crazy persons, so I just take a couple of steps to walk away.
Rightaway she screams like she's just been stabbed or something. Just this loud, high pitch, continuous scream. These two enormous guys appear and she tells them to take my camera, the same way you'd imagine a queen saying "Off with his head!".
The two heavy guys are like "Give us the camera or there's gonna be trouble". So, I pull out my phone and say "Right, I'm calling the cops".
Something must have worked in the way I said this, because a person I assume was Debbie's manager then says "OK, here's what we're gonna do. We're gonna buy the film roll from you. How much do you want for it?" I say "I don't know. I've got a few nice pictures on there. Maybe a hundred pounds for the trouble?". Without flinching, he pulls out his wallet and, I don't know, maybe he misheard me or he's just not good with numbers, but he takes a whole wad of £50 banknotes and counts ten £50 notes out loud which he gives me. This is way more than what I asked for, so I'm completely confused by now, and I just open the camera and give him the film. The end.
Every time I listen to one of Blondie's songs now, I keep wondering what it was that got her to freak out like that, or why this guy just gave me so much more for the film roll.
That's not cool.
My mate is a huge Batman fan and was dragged along to see Val Kilmer at one of his Q&A tours. Val proceeded to be a huge d*ck while my mate was trying to ask a question. I keep hearing he's awfully rude towards his fans but now I have a first hand account to confirm.
I went to a convention where Leonard Nimoy was a scheduled guest. Sadly, he became too ill to attend.
Instead, he Skyped with the convention attendees, showed us his model train and his garden, and sang songs for us in the company of his grandson.
It was the best "not meeting your hero" ever. LLAP.
I've never met anyone that was an idol of mine that I had a bad experience with.
However, my best friend growing up had his go so bad he ended what was nearly 20 years of fandom right then and there. He worked for one of the big shoe stores and had won a contest to go to the All Star festivities for the NBA. He met a lot of current and former player and coaches and had a blast. Until he met Michael Jordan. Being a sneaker head, my friend owned originals or rereleases of every shoe Jordan ever had up until that point. It was something like 30 shoes if you counted the different colorways. Posters, jerseys, trading cards, memorabilia of all types adorned a room at his apartment.
He sees Jordan and decides to just kind of hang out until he is done talking and just get a quick meet and greet, no photo, no autograph, just to say hey. Jordan ends his conversation and my friend steps up near him and Jordan basically asks him who the he is, what he wants. My friend just tells him that he was a big fan and it was great to finally meet him. Jordan basically says, "yeah, whatever" and walks away.
He got home from the trip and started selling off his collection of shoes and all things Jordan. He had heard the stories and assumed they were just overblown or didn't happen.
At least Jim Lee was chill.
Went to a large comic book show probably 10 years ago or so with my GF. Generally go with a bunch of comics we want to get autographed and meet the creators. Standard stuff.
Todd McFarlane is one of the big guests to be there and we manage to get decently close to the front of his line, but before he's actually there. That's OK, we're used to this kind of thing. He's supposed to be there in an hour.
So, we start by taking turns, one person waits on line while the other takes a couple of comics over to another creator, meets them, gets a sig or 3. We generally care about meeting different folks so that's fine. Over an hour goes by, someone comes through the line and said he's not here yet, expect it to be another hour.
OK, so we do some more taking turns getting other sigs. A second hour goes by, and now we're told it'll be a bit longer and they're limiting people to 3 sigs each. OK....
Another half hour goes by, and now we're told it'll be a bit longer, and they're limiting it to 1 sig per person. WTF, but OK.
Another 30 mins goes by, so 3 hrs from when we got in line (don't even know how long it was for the people at the front) and he finally shows up, 2 hrs after he said he would be there and by how they kept cutting down how many books we could each get signed, obviously still planning on staying until he had originally planned to leave (not staying longer to make up for the time he was late).
As we're getting up to the front, dude's not even acknowledging people as they walk up to him. They try to say anything, he says nothing, quickly signs and shoos them away. Until we get there. Because one of us is a girl. He stares my GF down in the creepiest way possible while continuing to ignore the rest of us. She doesn't have much to say to him at that point, so just got the sig and moved on. As we're walking away, he continues to stare her down, ignoring people in line after us.
On the flipside, Jim Lee was the f**king man.
We were in line for him and he was told that his time was up and he had to stop. Everyone was bummed that they waited on line for nothing. He gets up and loudly announces to everyone on line for him that he was told his time's up, so he's sorry he won't be able to really meet everyone else, do any sketches, or take pictures, but if everyone can each take out 2 things they want signed, have them opened to wherever we want him to sign, he's going to quickly walk down the line and sign 2 things for each person so they at least get something for waiting in line.
And while he did that, he was chatting with each person who said something to him, at least smiling and saying hi to each person who didn't. He knew fans had waited in line a long time and wanted to thank them for doing so.
Not a good look.Giphy
My grandpa worked as a bartender at a very fancy hotel in my city years ago. One day, in walks Mick Jagger. My grandpa never knew much about the Rolling Stones but he knew the rest of us were fans, so when he served him at the bar, he asked for an autograph. Jagger didn't say anything but wrote something down on a cocktail napkin.
When my grandpa looked at it, it read "f*ck you". He didn't even sign his name. Just a d*ck move in my opinion.
He put his dreams on the back burner.
I use to be the front man for a death metal band back in the day (We were never good, but I thought we were the best band out there). I had a long list of musicians who I admired including Marilyn Manson and Danzig. One day while traveling I stopped at a Walmart to get some things and I saw Danzig himself in the parking lot walking along with a bag of groceries and a box of cat litter. Something in me changed when I saw him, doing ordinary things like everyone else. I started that band because I dreamed of getting away from ordinary things, and one of the most talented musicians of the genre was coming out of a walmart with groceries. I think seeing him like that matured me in an unexpected way. I emerged from my own self imposed ivory tower to see real life is not something you can escape from.
When I got home my girlfriend was telling me I need to find a real job, and I decided she was right. I told the band that this thing we're doing isn't going to lead to the success we want so we should make it a hobby and get real jobs. There weren't any complaints from anyone.
I wouldn't say it's a "Never meet your heroes," story because I came away better for it in the end. I got a job, got married and though I still have dreams of being on a stage singing with a death metal band playing behind me I'm sure I took the right course.
This isn't exactly a celebrity story, but when I was at university (only graduated this July) we had a lecturer on my course who everyone loved in first year.
This guy taught us for our international relations beginners course in first year, he was really approachable, friendly, talked about stuff like feminism and race issues that as idealistic freshers we loved. A friend and I even had him as a guest on a radio talk show we did at the uni radio station. Then things got problematic.
So as politics students we're encouraged to use twitter to follow our lecturers so we can keep up to date with stuff they retweet that might be useful for us, and this lecturer started messaging my friend who I did the show with through DMs on twitter. I was a bit confused about it at first but when he started to probe her with inappropriate questions she blocked him.
In second year we took his course (because we were interested in the subject matter) and he started to message another classmate of mine through DMs asking her sexual questions and abusing his position of power.
I had his books, loved his guy and what he apparently stood for, eventually found out he was a misogynistic pig who cheated on his wife with his students.
I asked Meryl Streep for a selfie. Her assistant informed me that "it wasn't that kind of festival."
Jokes on her, I have a better story now.
Just bad timing.
My favourite painter - I have one of his sketches tattooed on me and I had another tattoo planned. Let me try to work out the best way to tell this. So I was at a festival and I saw a talk by an author/activist who I had only recently become aware of. His talk was amazing so my friend and I approached him to chat some more, which he was totally down with. After chatting for a little, he offered to share a doob with us and continue the conversation, but I decided to excuse myself to go try to meet the artist I loved. I lined up for hours to meet him at a festival, only to have the meet and greet end before I got to the front of the line. I was bummed - not only did I miss out on meeting my favourite artist, I also missed out on smoking a doob with a really interesting dude.
But I still had tickets to a full day event being presented by this artist. So I had another chance. The day was cool, there were talks by the artist and his wife, live painting etc. There was also 2 meet and greet sessions. Once again I lived up for a couple of hours throughout the day and didn't get to meet this artist. So bummed!
Then I saw him and his wife speak at another festival. And there was another meet and greet. I think I stood in line for something like 2.5 hours. When I finally got to the front he was clearly exhausted and over being there. He really didn't have any energy to give me. I know it was because of how long he'd been sitting there meeting people, but it was a massive blow to my love of his art. I spoke to his wife though, and she was absolutely lovely and so genuinely engaged in our conversation. As a result, I began to appreciate her art a lot more and I really struggled to connect with his art in the same way.
I'm pretty sure he's not an a**hole (he was just tired) but it was still a massive blow to my relationship with his art.