I am slightly embarrassed to admit that I have been totally looking forward to seeing LA Weekly Restaurant Critic Jonathan Gold speak this evening at the Central Library in Downtown. In fact, I have been waiting for this day to come since Illewminator sent the invite a month ago. Even as I rushed out of the house, late as usual, I turned around to retrieve my copy of Counter Intelligence for Mr. Gold to autograph. I was so geeked.

When I get to the library, however, I meet this obnoxious Asian woman by the elevators in the parking garage. She's freaking out on her cell phone because she's late to some event. So I offer for her to follow me up the stairs to the library. Once we get there, she freaks out again because she doesn't know where to go, and I'm like, just follow me, I think we're going to the same place. Once we get to the auditorium, we see this HUGE line that bends around the corner and then some. The woman, still on the phone, bypasses me and just walks through crowd, ignoring the long line of increasingly impatient Gold fans. I immediately and instinctively follow her as she butts in front of all these people to the very head of the line, that is now blocked off due to overcapacity. She ducks under the barrier and is essentially carried off by her companion who was waiting securely on the other side. I, on the other hand, am left at the front of the line with all the crazies...

The coordinator of the Zocalo event then announces that the auditorium is full and no one else is allowed to enter. All of a sudden, what appears to be a group of cultured and civilized intellectuals turns into an hysterical, semi-apocalyptic mob in a seriously deep frenzy. They go berserk. They want blood.

But I rsvp'ed! Why did you overbook? Is there an overflow room? You must let me in. I have been waiting here for a half hour. We demand a formal apology. Everyone here should get their parking tickets validated. This is outrageous. This should have never happened. Will you ask Jonathan Gold if he will speak again in another hour? Let me speak to the person in charge!

The coordinator apologizes. "I'm sorry," she says over and over and over again, and louder each time. To deaf ears, of course. Yeah, I feel bad for her. But as part of the hungry pack, I also make a meager attempt:

Hey, I have a friend in there who is saving a seat for me.

Sorry, Miss, there are no available seats.

Oh, I see.

Finally, the security guards slowly turn the mob away and successfully divert a possible riot. I think to myself, maybe if I linger around just a little longer... but then I see other Grub Clubbers and realize that no one made it in! I feel better.

I guess Jonathan Gold will remain a mystery, a myth. Kind of like Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, Jesus...