Brushes With Fame

Kate at One More Thing… told us some of her favorite celebrity stories, and asked readers to comment. This post started as a comment, but I had verbal diarrhea and it got too long. A blog post is born!

I’ve had many run-ins with the famous and the wish-they-were-more so. All of them are memorable, except the ones I’ve forgotten.

The band at my 8th grade St. Valentine’s Day Dance was a terrific band named Atlantic City Expressway. I was on the Dance Committee, so was involved in set-up and break-down. Now we were quite rockin’ in the Jersey burbs, and would dance the night away at our dances. At that dance, though, there was little dancing because the band was soooo good. In addition to the normal drums, bass and electric guitar they had a horn section! And did I mention that the lead singer was hot? Hot! Afterwards my pubescent friends and I took some of the paper cupids we’d used to decorate the gym and got his autograph. I also got a very Monica Bradyesque kiss on the cheek. A few years later that lead singer, Jon Bon Jovi, became a Really Big Deal with a different band. A note to Wikipedia: I see you removed my contribution about Jon being in Atlantic City Expressway and playing at least one local school dance but you kept the edit about him having a very large penis. Couldn’t they both be true?

I hit the jackpot when I was doing promotions for a large fair, including but not limited to:

  • I had to keep hiding newly-opened beer bottles from a very drunk Peter Noone (of Herman’s Hermits fame)
  • Took a fun-filled golf-cart ride with a smokin’ hot John Stamos and a huge bodyguard named Tiny and later turned down an offer to hang out at his hotel (no hanky or panky being offered, just a really nice guy)
  • Watched security remove a belligerent John Waite from the premises
  • Was told off by Randy Travis’ wife/manager for no good reason, though he was perfectly wonderful
  • Michael Damien. Enough said.

When I was eleven I spent our country’s Bicentennial 4th of July weekend in a hotel room in Toledo, Ohio. My siblings and I spent one of the Most Special Days in History in our hotel room while my father and stepmother went out on the town. In those days it wasn’t an arrestable offense to leave your children alone (and our ages ranged from 10-14), but at the time I thought they should have been arrested for robbing their children of the experience of celebrating the Bicentennial. Therapy has only slightly lessened the pain.

Still, there were two celebrity bright spots that weekend. We played pinball in the game room of the hotel with Mark Spitz and members of the US Olympic Swim Team. We also discovered that Peter Cole of Mod Squad fame was staying there. I had a mad, mod crush on him, so my sister and I snuck up to his floor and listened at his door. And we heard…nothing. We did not come away empty-handed: we reached under his door and pulled out a few carpet fibers and ran back to our room with our treasure. What can I tell you? I was eleven.

My father and stepmother were personal friends of the late, great Joe Williams. In addition to being one of the greatest Jazz singers ever, some of you may remember him as Bill Cosby’s father-in-law on The Cosby Show. One of my favorite celebrity moments was at my sister’s wedding, when he joined the band to sing my sister and new brother-in-law a special song. A terrific, warm man. May he rest in peace.

My most embarrassing brush with fame occurred in a local bar/dance club in the early 1990’s. Ed Begley, Jr. was there, and we wound up chatting with him for a few minutes. I knew who he was, sort of. I’d not watched St. Elsewhere, but I knew he was in it. I told him I loved him in the movie Something Wild . He looked at me like the moron I am and said, “Uh, that wasn’t me, that was Jeff Daniels.”


What about you?


5 Responses to “Brushes With Fame”

  1. Funny about Money Says:

    What great stories!

    I was in Las Vegas once, sitting at a bar waiting for my husband to return from wherever he’d wandered off to, and who should sit down next to me but a man who looked and sounded exactly like Frank Sinatra. Not once did I gasp “you’re not…?!?!??” He carried on a normal conversation and then drifted away. Strange.

  2. goodfountain Says:

    You aren’t clear – did YOU leave the comment about JBJ’s large penis? I have to wonder what all went on at that dance!

    I met Tom Wopat once. My cousin had a huge crush on him (don’t ask) and he and John Schneider were singing with the Pops and afterwards she SO DESPERATELY wanted to meet him that we hung out for awhile. I took her picture with him. But he told me I looked very pretty in my blue dress (gag). My cousin was so jealous (more gag).

  3. BeThisWay Says:

    goodfountain – I’ll never tell. Jersey girls, we have a Code.

    Tom Wopat is cute. His brother Dave was singing for his supper at colleges during the early-mid eighties, and we booked him for our school. Nice guy. Not quite as cute. And I don’t recall him commenting on my dress, but he was the kind of guy who didn’t look you in the eye, if you know what I mean…

  4. Tipper Says:

    Only semi-famous people I’ve met hail from the Bluegrass World-sure you wouldn’t recognize them-but I enjoyed you’re post!

  5. All About Celebrities Blog Carnival: Volume 4 | CustomizedGirl Blog Says:

    […] presents Brushes With Fame posted at Are You Going To Be This Way The Rest of The Time I Know […]

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