My apologies to Alton Brown … apparently I am cursed when it comes to attending his live shows.
Back in 2009 I went to the “Good Eats Turns 10″ live show in Atlanta. In that show was a trivia segment that had (pre-selected) people from the audience come up on stage. One of the participants was extremely annoying in her behavior which made for (I thought) an uncomfortable situation (and I think the rest of the audience did too).
Last night I took my daughter to Alton’s “Edible Inevitable” tour show in Tampa. Overall, we had a fantastic time, starting with an in-person meet-and-greet backstage with AB (got a few autographs, including on a photo of the three of us from 2004). The show was a lot of fun, a great blend of music (Alton playing guitar and even saxophone!), comedy, cooking information, food science, and larger-than-life experiments … everything you’d expect from the creator of “Good Eats.”
The only pall on the evening was the audience member Alton invited on-stage for his second experiment. I won’t spoil too much of the surprise but let’s just say it involves a super-sized Easy Bake oven. AB asked for volunteers and picked an older woman waving her scarf (“I’m picking you so you’ll stop that.”). Right from the start, something was wrong … the way she was acting, her snarky replies, etc. It didn’t seem like she was treating Alton with the respect he deserved (it is his show, after all!). I think the rest of the audience was in agreement as things got out of hand quickly with jokes and innuendos spoken by this lady that made me a little uncomfortable (this was supposed to be a family show, after all!). Clearly she had been drinking and I’m sure Alton was regretting his choice, but he did a good job keeping his cool, rolling with the punches, and kept the show moving.
After the show, I thought maybe she had been a plant and the whole scenario had been scripted/planned. I called my sister who had seen the show a few weeks earlier in Chicago, though, and she confirmed nothing like the sort had happened. Now, that’s not to say the show couldn’t have multiple plants but I’m pretty sure Alton was just picking random people and really had no idea what he was in for.
So, Mr. Brown, I apologize for last night and hope you still managed to have a good time here in Tampa. Thanks for an incredible evening!