I’ve been going to conventions since 1998 so I’ve met lots of celebrities in that setting. I don’t recall ever meeting one “in the wild”.
Leonard Nimoy was at my very first convention and my friend and I (both 14 or 15 years old) had ZERO clue what we were doing. We had saved up money to go and thought we had purchased a ticket that included his autograph so we got in line after his Q&A panel. We were at the back of the line and when we finally got up to the last checkpoint (about 5 feet from his table) they told us we didn’t have the proper ticket. We were so heartbroken but weren’t going to fight it. As we were turning away, Mr. Nimoy waved us over to the table and signed both of our copies of his book I am Spock. He was so nice even after what I am sure was a very long day for him. I still have that book proudly displayed on my shelf.
Some other favorites in no particular order: Bruce Campbell, Kevin Sorbo, Frank Gorshin, Ray Park, Chase Masterson, Peter Mayhew, Ioan Gruffudd, Jeffrey Combs, and Majel Barrett Roddenberry.
@stardate820926 I tried to play Leonard Nimoy’s “Ballad of Bilbo Baggins” here on the playlist at work. That lasted about 1 minute before being deleted. He seemed like a nice guy, it’s awesome you got to meet him.
Actually I forgot about one, though they are mostly local celebs.
I was at the horse races with my parents many years ago. Norm Hitzges was in the box next to us with Rick Stacy (of “you’re burning money” Stacy Furniture fame) and his family. I don’t know if they were friends or if the Stacy’s had hired Norm to be their guide. In any case, we spent the whole day getting tips from Norm Hitzges and hearing all sorts of stories.
@moonhat Yes. Really. Tall ships. Some people see them, think they are cool (obviously @CaptAmehrican and I do because we have both worked on them and both have USCG licenses for them), they come over and try to sweet talk their way on board (and depending on who they are, who is on watch, etc, it can work - although I have let random kids on board to look too as that makes their day, and they are the next generation of donors to keep those things sailing). At water festivals that have them tons of people ogle and tour them, including celebs and their kids. Also companies charter them for various purposes and sometimes well known people are on board, there are (planned so they charter the boat) weddings on board…
@CaptAmehrican@Kidsandliz That is neat, I had no idea they were a draw for famous people! I myself have only toured some once, it was a thing in Tacoma a couple decades ago but these ones weren’t terribly impressive, and the lines were super long. I think there are other shows elsewhere I should check out instead. We do see the Lady Washington and the Hawaiian Chieftan out in the sound from time to time while sailing. Hey! Where is that huge rubber ducky that is sometimes with the tall ships located? I would love to see that in person.
@CaptAmehrican I’ve always said if I ever ran into Mike Rowe I would buy him a beer and ask him about the monkey lady from season two of Dirty Jobs. I have a feeling there is a lot more to that story than what was aired.
It was a long time ago, just days after Hurricane Katrina, and the nation was still responding to the disaster. Reports coming out of the SuperDome described a scene of pandemonium, with robberies, violence, humans living in their own filth, and even murder. One of the first buses of coming out of there was coming to a shelter near my home, and I went to volunteer to help. These people had lost everything-- what could I do but help?
When the bus pulled up, the evacuees stepped out into the sunlight. There were young and old, white and black, mothers with children whose homes had flooded and mentally-ill homeless people who never had anything to lose in the first place. Despite their differences, they all shared a faraway look in their eye. A hundred-mile stare I will never understand. And then I met Charles Barkley.
That’s right. Sir Charles himself! He showed up and I got to meet him and talk with him and everything. He was super chill! Some people like to talk crap about him, but he was totally cool. I got to shake his hand. I still haven’t washed my right hand, and when I feel lonely I sniff those fingers and think about Charles Barkley. Keenan Thompson does a great impression of him on Saturday Night Live. Like, it’s not really anything like him at all, but it is kind if funny, and Kristen Wiig used to play Bjork in the sketches with him, and she’s pretty hot. I’ve never met her, though.
@Limewater I’ve had the pleasure of talking to Sir Charles a few times. There used to be a sports talk show in Philly called The Great Sports Debate. I had gone to many tapings of it and he would often be there. Always a great guy who’s willing to bs with the fans.
@Targaryen Ha ha ha! He showed up a while after the people from New Orleans did. He was there to help. He bought plane tickets and rides to the airport for a bunch of people who had family elsewhere in the country.
I somehow ended up with the job of escorting a photojournalist around to make sure he didn’t get into the actual shelter area they had set up. This ended up as me hanging out with him and Charles Barkley for a long time, looking at pictures he had taken in New Orleans.
I kind of felt bad afterwards. I had shown up hoping to do some kind of work, and instead hung out with a celebrity most of the time. But it’s what they told me to do.
Those briefly met in the wild and talked with (some I had no clue who they were until someone told me):
Then President Clinton, wife and kid came to Jamestown Foundation one morning when I was volunteering on the boat. Al Gore and one son came in the afternoon. They closed the boat when each came on board (I think they closed the entire place while they were there. People couldn’t enter and people couldn’t leave). Hillary asked our opinions about health care. They didn’t take away sharp objects from us either (I had been digging out tar covered rope from between the planks with a sharp, curved knife). All of them seemed very down to earth.
Also I temporarily traded t-shirts with a Roseanne show secondary actress (Was involved in the restaurant they opened, no longer remember her name - I do remember she was tall though, around my height; some other story line involving her I now forget) so she could get into the crew lunch. I didn’t realize who she was until after the fact when someone else told me with whom I had been chatting and let borrow my t-shirt; I was crewing on a tall ship 4th of July in NYC; At the time, if I recall correctly, she was dating the captain of one of NYC’s museum tall ships.
Years ago when I was working for an outdoor adventure program in FL, I spent some time off at a ocean side house a bunch of people had rented so they could escape the place on days off. Someone had his girlfriend there (turns out he knew her from growing up as they went to school together in Connecticut). At the time she had a very active movie acting career. I forget who she was. I am thinking maybe Meg Ryan. She hung around for several weeks and the adjudicated youth I was working with where thrilled when she showed up one day at site. She was kind and gave the kids autographs without being asked to do so.
Gordon Bok (a fantastic sea oriented folk singer) came by my then boyfriend’s father’s marina (in Norfolk). The father owned a sailing tugboat and was well known in the sailing community. Anyway he had come by to meet Lane (the father) and check out the sailing tugboat. Unfortunately he did not sing for us despite us all hoping he’d do so.
I also worked in the Newman family outdoor store. Never met the famous Newman, but his brother and nephews ran the store and the lot of them had those startling blue eyes. I had no idea who they were until someone told me.
On a SW airline the very last seat left was next to some big wig golf player on his way to a major tournament (I had been flying standby). At first he thought I was a groupie so was initially rude to me and then realized I had no clue who he was so started talking to me. We didn’t talk about golf, we talked about his plan to get a PhD and then do stuff in education with inner city kids. Early in the conversation through he did decide he needed to make sure I knew he was a highly ranked golfer. Found his name Jeev Singh.
Oh and in the Boston Harbor (again working on a tall ship, docked at Shipyard quarter’s marina) the Kennedy clan showed up on a big motor yacht. There was some wedding they were going to in Boston. Several of them came aboard - mostly the kids. And in Key West (spring break - took students on a tall ship) we were leaving (on our way sailing to Dry Tortuga from Key West) and Jimmy Buffett was solo sailing, came along side, we tied up his boat and he came aboard for a little bit. A couple of students saw him later in is bar down there.
Do Hemingway’s cats’ descendants count? (grin). That one was fun and self initiated.
@cinoclav YES. Thank you. VIJAY Singh is the right one, not who I posted. When I found a golfer whose last name and first initial rang a bell I stopped looking. It has been a long while. He was telling me all sorts of crap about Tiger Woods - like when he was at his house and they ordered pizza that Tiger would never tip saying the delivery person already gets paid… I don’t think he liked him all that much either that or he liked bad mouthing people who were better at golf than he was at the time.
I was impressed though about what he wanted to do with inner city kids in terms of motivating them to keep going in school, graduate, get vocational training or a college education. He seemed sincerely interested in that and not blowing smoke. He said he wasn’t going to teach, rather he wanted to be a consultant to help schools achieve that. He wanted to get his PhD from Harvard.
EDIT:: Decided to look him up. Looks like maybe now he is better than Tiger Woods? As I said I don’t know much about golf. Also looks like he never did any of the educational stuff.
@Kidsandliz Maybe he realized golfing was much more lucrative. I’ve never heard much good or bad about him. There are plenty of golfers who are just total assholes though along with several who are truly awesome.
@cinoclav Talking with him, other than trashing Tiger a bit (and who knows what is true there, apparently his wife didn’t like him enough to stay) and wanting to make sure I knew who he was (he then didn’t dwell on it) he seemed like a normal human being where you could have a normal conversation. Considering what wikipedia says about him, I’d say staying a golfer was exponentially more lucrative. He grew up in a normal family that was not rich, so that might be part of why he seemed reasonably normal to me and doesn’t act in ways that get him negative attention.
@cinoclav So I just read about him. Married to the same person since 1985, no affairs, has a charitable foundation for battered women and kids (which is consistent with things we talked about so long ago so I guess since he still golfs he decided to go that route with his other dreams), no scandals that held water to speak of… normal person - good at what he does and rich - but normal.
@cinoclav@Kidsandliz I have seen a piece of art belonging to another pro golfer showcasing our hero triumphing over tiger woods. Of course this was back when tiger woods was good. I will not name names or go into detail because it’s probably a private piece, but I was entertained by it.
@Kidsandliz Prob was Meg Ryan (hyra back when). She went to my high school (after me)… was in my sister’s class in Bethel, Ct.
(as I read other’s posts I keep remembering more and more that I have met and had forgotten about)
Two come to mind… maybe one and a half. First, I met Ozzie Smith (St. Louis Cardinals baseball player) at the St. Louis airport and got his autograph. This was while he was still playing, probably circa 1990. I was only like 10 years old, but he’s always been my favorite player and was accommodating for probably being in a hurry. Second, when I was walking to the bus stop after work (a certain Amazon subsidiary) I passed Lewis Black on the sidewalk but didn’t really stop and 1) confirm that 100% or 2) talk to him. Could have been a rando, but Lewis Black was in Seattle for a benefit dinner of some sort that night. I imagine he’d have been an ass had I stopped him (and that’s not a dig, I enjoy his humor).
I’ve met some band members from Steppenwolf, Branson, The Beach Boys, and a few others. My dad’s been a musician in SoCal for about 40 years, so I had some fun opportunities to meet people, though I missed out on meeting Stephen Tyler and I’m still bitter about it.
This year, my husband and I met Bryan Brushwood, which was fun.
@Thumperchick heh… forgot about Tyler too. A guy (worked with my dad and lived with us for a while) grew up best friends with him… so I met him but… didn’t realize at first who he was. He was introduced as Steve Telarico (sp?). Then found out he was playing at the arena and we got backstage passes. Unfortunately, that night he got an emergency call and had to fly back to NY pronto… his wife needed him… their apt had caught fire. Otherwise he was scheduled to have dinner at my mom’s house the next day.
I used to do World of Warcraft raids with Mia Rose, who at the time I guess she was a XXX star, and recently was on an episode of MTV’s Catfish: Trolls Edition. Apparently now she’s a twitch streamer. Kind of off topic, but I found it amusing.
Other than that, I’ve only met Billy Currington, The Band Perry, and Faith Hill touched my hand at a concert earlier this year
311 : the tickets were won, and they were just ok. It was a Halloween show and the band was nice. Too much pot in the air.
Apocalyptica - Finnish, heavy metal chello, yes please
/youtube apocalyptica not strong enough
Amorphis - probably the most popular Finnish metal band with apocalyptica in second. The lead singer, Tomi J is so tiny. His voice is huge though.
I remember meeting someone from the Florida Panthers hockey team. The goalie I think. Around the time that every one was throwing stuffed and rubber rats onto the rink. Somewhere I have a shirt and signed hockey puck. Not really into sports though.
Edit: looked him up. John Vanbiesbrouck
The only person I remember running into randomly is Twiggy from Marilyn Manson. He lived in the same city as me. We were going to see the same Star Wars movie. Later that year my brother and his girlfriend ran into him at the mall and bought me a CD for him to sign and gave it to me for a Christmas gift.
/youtube Marilyn Manson lunchbox
At Disneyland one time Teri Garr got on a keelboat when the kids she was with wanted to go over to Tom Sawyer’s island. She didn’t know the keelboat didn’t go over there as well. She was two seats down from us. We tell people “we went on a cruise with Teri Garr”.
Another time, waiting in line for the Matterhorn, Mindy Cohn was behind us where the cars loaded and she was sad that she and her friend wouldn’t be in front and my husband offered to let them go ahead of us.
I stuck my tongue out at her. And screamed my head off the entire ride.
That’s it. My celebrity stories.
Oh, yeah, and Kurt Bevaqua. He came into where I worked (trash company) to pay his bill. It was overdue and we’d stopped picking up his trash. He blew in like the wind, all smiles, saying he knew we were just waiting for him. When he left we had to look at his bill to see who he was.
I briefly met Marcia Ball having lunch the day after a show at Poor David’s Pub (old location) in Dallas. She was very gracious & invited me to sit & chat while the wait staff was taking care of her check.
/youtube That’s Enough Of That Stuff live
Took Bryce Langston, host of YouTube channel Living Big in a Tiny House out to eat last summer. Happened to walk up while he was talking to some exhibitors at the Tiny House Jamboree in Arlington; Bryce (a Kiwi) was looking for some local eats besides what was available from the event food trucks.
/image Bryce Langston
Went on a Delbert McClinton blues cruise about 15 years ago; got to rub shoulders with a lot of musicians during meals, after-parties, and excursions. Bob DiPiero, a Nashville Hall of Fame songwriter with 15 no. 1 hits, was my dive partner for a scuba trip in Cancun.
/image Bob DiPiero
Forgot retired college basketball coach Lou Henson, all-time wins leader at both U of Illinois and New Mexico State; 779 total wins, no. 16 overall. Very good friends of the family - he & his wife are godparents to one of my kids.
/image Lou Henson
Ozzie Smith came to my elementary when I was in 4th or 5th grade and spoke to the 4th through 6th graders. He was friends with one of the 6th grade teachers and her family.
When I was in college I attended the Principia Public Affairs Conference my freshman and sophomore years. Ralph Nader was the keynote speaker the year the topic was Living Democracy. I asked him how he defined democracy (since he kept using the word). He said you can’t define or explain it and you have to experience it. I completely tuned him out after that since he wanted to use words he couldn’t explain.
Former Governor (and now Ambassador) Terry Branstad came in as a customer and I waited on him. Also, the only time I’ve gone to Yankee Doodle Pops, my dad and I sat next to Gov. Branstad and his family. I don’t remember if then-Lt. Gov. (and now current Governor) Kim Reynolds was sitting there with her family as well.
I went on the Music Boat Cruise and met a bunch of Christian artists. I don’t remember if it was a member of Newsong or 4Him, but our ship came across some refugees and was circling them for awhile until it could be determined whether they neede help. Anyhow both the band member and I were watching from the library for a bit and briefly talked. The refugees did need help so our ship brought them on board.
I’ve met Simon Estes when he spoke at a fundraiser for an organization my mom used to volunteer for.
My mom and I met Mickey, Chip, Dale, and Pluto (and have pictures with them) at Epcot.
eta: I knew Tyler Sash and attended his funeral. I still see his sister and parents from time to time (haven’t seen his brother for awhile though).
During my uni years, early to mid 80s, found myself backstage after the Clash concert - wasn’t sure why I was there as not really into the “fan” thing but a memory.
A number of years later while living in Tokyo I walked into The American Pharmacy to buy some candy to sneak into a movie theater. It was located in a huge hotel lobby in Ginza. As soon as I walked in I noticed something odd was going on with the staff all whispering to themselves. I then saw about 4 huge bodyguards towering over the shelves! OK, whatever, some celeb is in the store. I went to the candy aisle and Michael Jackson walked past me. I got my candy and noticed that MJ was just walking around the aisles. Talking to friends we came to realize that was his secret vacation. MJ somehow arrived in Tokyo without anyone finding out and all he could do was walk around the lobby of the hotel.
A couple years later a friend and I were doing something in downtown Tokyo and using the subway walkways to get around as it was cooler and easier to get around. In this odd corner we found a table set up with a woman announcing LaToya Jackson would be arriving soon! There wasn’t a new CD release or books around just that she was ARRIVING SOON! There were like 3 or 4 people standing around so we decided to see what this was about for giggles. The rep made a couple more announcements about the limo being nearer and nearer and finally LaToya finally arrived. There were probably 20 people at that time. She had a mic and didn’t really do anything but say hello to everyone.
One of the largest bargain sales I would go to was at a manufacturers site. I think it was 6 floors of a huge warehouse. At that time Jean-Paul Gaultier was being sponsored by this manufacturer and I loved his clothes but they were crazy expensive. Prices were cut by 90%. One year we turned a corner and Gaultier was there with a couple of models. He had a music video out and they performed in this odd little space but at the end we got to chat with Gaultier for some time which was great for the designer boyfriend.
When my older sisters (who are twins but look nothing alike) were like 8, my family lived in Midland, TX. One day my mom was picking them up from a birthday party; she arrived and said she was there to pick up “the twins,” so the mom or whatever brought out two little girls that weren’t my sisters. Turns out they were George W Bush’s daughters.
And that’s the story of how my sisters partied with the Bush twins.
@nolrak It’s a good story. I was an unpaid usher at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta. We’d get there early, get our assignments, then seat people from the time the doors opened until after intermission when the headliner came in. Then we could sit in the vacant seats we’d already scouted.
Usually there was time between getting our assignments and the doors opening, so we’d go sit up front and listen to the sound checks.
The bands usually ignored us (except Cheap Trick, who kicked us out), but after Harry Chapin’s sound check he came to the edge of the stage and thanked us for being there and helping with the show. Then he came down off the stage and shook hands with all the boys and kissed all the girls.
@craigthom That’s a wonderful story; what an experience and memory to have.
Everything I’ve ever read said that he was about as down to earth and unpretentious as could be. The man had his flaws — who doesn’t — but in general Chapin is high on my list of role models for how people should be.
Jerry Lewis once at a hotel in Las Vegas, for just a few minutes where he showed what a classy and nice person he was. Robert Urich while he was filming an episode of Vegas. Doc Ross, the Channel 3 weatherman who did the first computer weather display in Las Vegas (it was an Apple ][ loading the map graphics in the typical multi-segment scroll) which was uber cool since I had an Apple ][+.
My favorite was Gus Giuffre, aka Gentleman Gus Giuffre, who was a Las Vegas staple while I was growing up. The One o-Clock Movie with Gus, and so very many more things. He was often on local TV talk and ‘about Las Vegas’ shows; he also called bingo for my grade school’s annual fundraiser, and came to the spring carnivals to announce the raffle winners (and call bingo); he did similar things for other schools and organizations. Absolutely the nicest and most gentlemanly person I think I’ve ever met.
Paul Williams, Roger Ebert, Dick Francis, and Jimmy Carter (among others) at bookstore signings; the Monkees, Elvis Costello, Barenaked Ladies at various signings; Pauline Kael, George Plimpton, and Red Skelton when they appeared at my college; and Telly Savalas sitting outside of his namesake bar at a hotel in Los Angeles during a Monkees fan convention.
I told my congressman (Jim McCrery) to shut up one time and didn’t realize it until I saw it happen on the news that night. I was working a phone bank when he popped in for a visit, and he came behind me on camera probably trying to say something nice like thanks for the hard work, but dammit, I was on the phone with a job to do. I heard someone talking to me and just glanced over my shoulder and shushed him and pointed to the phone at my ear. I never saw him or knew he was there until I saw it on TV later, and me doing that was part of the b-roll.
I was pulled into service as a bodyguard for Billie Myers back in what, the 90’s, when her song “Kiss the Rain” was big. Apparently the local radio station was supposed to provide security for her and hadn’t done so, so my friend that worked there just grabbed me and said “come with me, you’re a bodyguard”. I acted serious (probably more serious than a real bodyguard) and nothing bad happened.
Hung out with Fred Leblanc of Cowboy Mouth after a concert for a long while. He’s a good dude, full of life and every bit as crazy as his onstage persona. My sister and my cousin were both there, and Fred at one point took a Sharpie and wrote “Josh’s Fuck Buddy” across my sister’s forehead–Josh is our cousin.
I went to school with Kenny Wayne Shepherd and I guess was sort of sometimes friends with him, though I didn’t always hold him in the highest regard. That was so long ago though.
Trent Reznor sent me a hat once, an awesome black on black NIN hat that I hope to find again someday (I think it’s at my parents house) but I never met him. He bought a bike from a place my mom worked for years (who worked with all kinds of big names including pre-scandal Lance Armstrong) and she spoke to him on the phone. I still like that story though.
I know there were more music people as I spent five years in college radio and we had tons of bands in to play. I remember hanging out with the lead singer of Spacehog after a show just before they got big. My friend named him Captain Jupiter because he was so far out there on whatever substance he had taken.
I think I met a few movie stars when we used to have a lot of movies filmed here, but I never made a big deal of it, it was always more of a “nice to meet you” thing. Just because someone is famous I don’t necessarily get starstruck. I think I spoke to Kevin Costner (who was nice) and I saw Samuel L. Jackson (as far as I know he still owns a house here), and I know I’m forgetting at least one more.
Where I have been starstruck is with people I am fans of, even at far less of a celebrity level. I met the hosts of one of my favorite podcasts last year and made what I perceived to be a complete ass of myself. And I was super nervous meeting the staff at Mediocre.
Hmm does it count that a friend and her husband bought a country singer’s house. It had a pool with a slide and cabana, tennis court, backed up to a golf course, a huge room with a stage and wired for a fancy sound system… I know that house inside and out, but can’t, for the life of me remember who the country singer was. And never met him either.
I forgot that as a baby we lived down the street from Einstein. Mom said he’d be walking home from Princeton (while she was out walking me in a stroller) looking all rumpled, talking to himself with his hair sticking out all over the place. I really, really wish mom had taken a photo. That would have been so cool to have a photo of me and Einstein.
Also I worked (in Germany) with a (later) senator from Colorado back when he wasn’t famous and his dad was the senator instead of him (Udall family).
And I forgot when I worked in NW ontario (taking people camping for a living) the staff had a play day at the downhill ski place outside of Thunderbay, Ontario (we were doing down the downhill slopes on cross country skis). The USA olympic downhill ski team was there training for the olympics that were later that year. I went up the lift next to someone practicing jumps. He couldn’t believe we were all going down the hills on cross country skis - he thought we were all crazy. I told him no way I’d do what he did, too scary. His skis made mine look like tiny matchsticks.
Another friend of mine (via the outdoor jobs I had) won 7 gold metals in the kayaking “worlds” (the big deal kayaking event back then). We were on the Ottawa river (big, Colorado River style, water and rapids). I chickened out paddling some of them. Instead of having to portage my kayak she would come and run the rapid twice taking mine down too.
@Kidsandliz - I never met either of them, but it’s a funny story.
This was in LA in the early '40s, I think? Einstein was scheduled to appear at a movie premiere. My great grandfather looked so much like him, his friends convinced him to go to the event. He rented a limo and showed up early. Everyone thought he was Einstein and treated him royally. When A. E. did show up, they had a laugh and took the photo.
I believe it was in the LA Times, but I haven’t been able to crack the archives. Maybe if I knew which movie it would help.
Darrell Royal (legendary UT football coach)
A few UT football players from national championship teams. I clearly recall James Street.
Betty Buckley (FW local and Broadway star)
US Rep (at the time) George HW Bush
George W Bush (he was a teenager at at the same reception, to which I was dragged by family)
Various Bush relations who are not famous or who are known for reasons having nothing to do with the Bush family.
Sen John Tower
Sen Ralph Yarborough
US Rep (later Speaker) Jim Right
Speaker Sam Rayburn
Astronaut Alan Bean
Billy Jean King (my family - tennis nutcases)
Martina Navratilova (she lived in FW for a time)
Arnold Palmer (at a local golf tourney - i was perhaps 10 years old?)
Once shared a house with someone who, decades later, became a Fed Reserve head (no details, as he dislikes notoriety outside the world of economics)
You get to see, and sometimes talk with, famous people in Manhattan.
Marcia Wallace (receptionist on The Bob Newhart Show)
Chris Reeve and Gae Exton
Various little-known documentarians in Manhattan
Joey Ramone who finished my beer at CBGB’s
Wilson Pickett (yeah!)
Robert Mapplethorpe (curiously, he lived upstair from someone I had known for years
I’ve been at gatherings where I spoke to various billionaires for like 10 seconds. Altho none of their prosperity wore off on me.
This is not because of some virtue or other, of mine, or some social standing (I possess none). FW was, and is, in some ways, a small town. And the strata of Manhattan I traveled was similar. Back then.
The only two I actually tried to meet:
And some mathematicians and a few philosophy profs.
Many others. I’m sure more of their names will hit me later.
Good grief. I forgot Leonard Bernstein.
And Laurie Anderson.
And William Burroughs.
Passed Danny Aiello on the street in NYC. Met James Doohan at a convention, I think it was my only convention. Shook Dan Rather’s hand. Walked another well-known TV journalist’s dog (can’t remember his name). Someone from PBS, might have been Bill Moyers or Charlie Rose. Ran a slide projector for Jane Goodall. Henry Winkler at an airport — he asked me where his gate was (I didn’t know, and it turned out to be my gate, so I totally failed him). Mikhail Gorbachev in the 90s. Was in the same gymnasium with Ross Perot after the 1992 election. No long conversations with any of these people, but I did work on a film with Ed Asner, so probably had some sustained contact during the few days he was there.
This took some vigorous scraping of my brain to pull this stuff up.
Oh, and @djslack just reminded me that I met Trent Reznor and band. My only other musical connection was going to school with one of Bob Dylan’s kids (he was a jerk), and yet my wishlist of people to meet would be heavy on musicians.
@TheFLP I had forgotten but James Doohan came to UNLV and gave a presentation. Afterwards a small group of engineering students hung around long enough to spend a little time with him.
I had passed the Nevada EIT exam shortly before; I had him sign the card I received (and he put “Scotty” in quotes next to his signature). He said he heard from a lot of engineering students and practicing engineers that Lt. Cmdr Montgomery Scott had been an inspiration.
Was in line in front of Fred Schneider of The B-52’s at a record store once. Didn’t realize it until all the clerks started whispering about it. Waited outside and wanted to say Hi, but he looked really nervous, so I didn’t.
Ran into Seal — pre-‘Kiss from a Rose’ — at an art gallery in West Hollywood. It was so unexpected it startled me. Plus, the dude’s like seven feet tall.
Met Kevin Costner and Angela and Veronica Cartwright at Angela’s gallery in Studio City. He came up and shook our hands: “Hi…I’m Kevin.” Like we didn’t know.
Gave Chaz Bono, back when he was still Chastity, a hug at a movie screening.
Met Elijah Wood at Amoeba Music in Los Angeles. My partner told him he loved him as Bilbo. I could’ve died. However, his eyes really are that freaky blue color in real life.
Sat behind David Lee Roth at a Frankie Goes to Hollywood concert. People kept coming up to him throughout the entire concert. He looked really old for his age even back then.
I don’t know how you can live in Southern California and not run into any celebrities. It’s almost unavoidable.
I totally forgot the most recent — and most bizarre — one. Was at a press event for a local Rock & Brews restaurant. Snuck into a more private interview area with Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons. As Gene was leaving, he sat his drink on top of my head for about three seconds. He picked it up again, looked at me and we both started laughing. It was just…weird. Goofy, but weird.
I realize some of these will require a google search but here goes. I am only including those whos hand I shook. In chronological(ish) order:
While a director at WPBN-TV in Traverse City, MI I met quite a few celebs because of the summer stock theater in town. They include the comedian Pat Paulsen who owned the theater. We actually became casual friends.
Ed Ames Tomahawk lesson
William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy (Neither of whom really meant anything to me at the time but more about that later)
Buddy Ebsen and his daughter Bonnie (OMG was I in love with her!)
Bob Crane of Hogan’s Heros
Alan Ludden of Password and unfortunately his wife, Betty White, wasn’t with him.
Gordon Lightfoot (Some of the crew of the Edmund Fitzgerald were from TC)
Vivian Vance complained about everything from the moment she entered the studio until she left. Wow!
Sha Na Na
The Harlem Globetrotter’s Meadowlark Lemon and Curly Neal. I never felt so short in my life except for the time I ran into the Old Dominion Woman’s basketball team at the Norfolk VA airport.
And my favorite, Abe Vigoda.
While in the Navy I got to meet Bob Hope and his wife. (I sat behind them during their show aboard the USS Lexington in Pensacola)
Also Sammy Davis Jr. (Awesome!)
Elizabeth Tayler (had her sign a birthday card for my Mom)
While at WEAR-TV Pensacola:
Joan Lunden and Charles Gibson while running camera for GMA. (That’s me leaning out from my camera)
Faith Hill during the 2nd GMA visit.
Derrick Brooks (The first time he was still in High school)
Roy Jones Jr.
Derrick “Smoke” Gainer
Joe Scarborough (MSNBC’s Morning Joe) while still a congressman. He was really pissed at me during our last interaction because I couldn’t give him IFB during a satellite uplink one Saturday afternoon. Later found out a fuse had blown on the Telex box.
(edit) I forgot Micky Dolenz
Pensacon (Comic convention people I had a conversation with)
Walter Koenig. Remember way back when I mentioned I met Shatner and Nimoy but didn’t realize who they were? While I was taking a picture of the wife with a full sized wookie and a jawa this guy tried to photobomb the picture. I gave him a dirty look and he moved on. No sooner did I reframe the picture he came back and tried again. The wife was frantically trying to get me to take the picture but I didn’t. I didn’t understand her pissed off look until she told me that Star Trek’s Chekov was photobombing our Star Wars picture.
So last year he returned to Pensacon and I had a chance to have a five minute conversation with him. I told him about the missed photo op. He thought it was hilarious. I told him he wasn’t the first Star Trek star I screwed up with as I didn’t recognize Shatner or Nimoy when I met them. He told me I just made his day.
John Barrowman is absolutely nuts! But his sister is cute.
Burn Gorman seemed more interested in the wife than talking to me.
Virginia Hey seemed bored until the wife wanted to talk about her meditation stuff. Then I was the bored one.
Deep Roy and I met in an elevator. Not very talkative but he did acknowledge my presence.
Peter Mayhew told my son to shut up because he wouldn’t stop talking. He asked for my permission first. So my son can honestly say Chewbacca told him to shut up.
I have a picture somewhere of Christopher Judge leaning over my son listening to him talking about his favorite Star Gate episode. Priceless!
Where do I start-Jonathan Winters, Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Don Nelson of the Boston Celtics (played basketball (one on one) Nick Price, my daughter was standard bearer at a golf tournament, music group Chicago, Billy Payne of the 96 Olympics/Masters, Mike Tirico, Davis Love, the cast of Happy Days, David Duval, Ray Nirschke, Richard Jewell of the 96 Olympics, (had a conversation with him while driving down I-85 in Atlanta) Muhammad Ali, met him at a traffic light, The Champ! Don Rickles, (I was a busboy at a restaurant in high school), Leroy Neiman, (he was selling signed golf prints at the PGA in Louisville) and I bought one. Davis Love lll, Evander Hollifield.
Back in the late 1990’s I was a crew member for a band called Sons Of Poseidon. The band opened shows for quite a few bands including Great White, and Jackyl. For the most part almost all the bands were pretty cool about me being a “fan-boy” around them. Present day, I’m neighbors with the head coach of the North Dakota State University Bison football team (His team has won the FCS National Championship 6 of the last 7 years!)
@tohar1 NDSU is like a home-team around here. The championship game is played in Frisco, which is a town, town and a half, north of the Mediocre HQ. They also happen to be one my alma mater’s rivals. And by rivals, I mean that we are in the same football conference and they win a lot and we don’t, so…Go Indiana State I guess.
Isn’t it just crazy how well Bison fans travel? The mayor of Frisco vacations up here trying to thank our community for coming and spending tons of cash into their local coffers each January. Pre-season poll just came out yesterday & The Bison had 151 out of 158 possible first place votes. If everyone stays healthy (and that’s always a big “IF”) they’re saying this could be a record season. (No Indiana State on the schedule this year though…) #StairwayToSeven
Now that I see the picture again, I have to tell the Jewel story too.
When I was dating my present wife, we were grabbing some coffee in a cool little cafe in Philly. A band was playing and it was awesome. Except it was the last song of the last set. So when it was over, I went up to the singer, asking if she would be back in town. She went on to tell me it was a promotional tour and it was a one-time thing.
As she was talking, she grabbed my nose and continued talking. She was hot, so I allowed it (although my girlfriend wasn’t very happy about it).
Years later, we’re watching VH1 pop-up video, and “Foolish Games” comes on. The factoid said, “Jewel like to play a foolish game of grabbing other people’s noses”. We looked at each other instantly recalling the memory.
About 6 years ago, Munn came to my company on a promotional thing as well. Very meet-and-greet, get in line, get an autograph, that kind of thing. I was a big AOTS fan at the time and my wife, Ariana, developed a girl-crush on her too.
So, I’m on the phone saying to my wife, “Guess who’s standing right in front of me? OLIVIA MUNN!” “No way” she says and won’t believe me. I say, “Olivia, want to talk to my wife?” She grabs the phone from me and they proceed with a 4 minute conversation.
She gives me back my phone when she was done, grabs my nose, and says, “Now I’m better that Jewel!” and walks away. It was legit amazing. She was totally cool and I will love her forever for it.
I have met Craig Robinson from the Office (pic below). Mae West (I was 6mos old), William Shatner, Gene Simmons, Jason Priestly, Michael Irvin, Deon Sanders,Dee Snyder, and when I was a adorable toddler on my 1st flight from Illinois to California, I was allowed to roam the Pan Am cabin and I sat on Red Foxx’s lap and told him stories of 2 yr old gibberish for the entirety of the flight.
Where I grew up in Ct there were lots of celebs, I don’t even half recall who they were anymore (most are prob gone now). A major record producer lived a few houses away so we saw a lot come and go. When I was 19 Myron Pollock from Sugarloaf asked me out once. I declined. And I met Melissa Manchester. Later on in life and here in Alabama, not so much. My seat was directly across the aisle from Randy Owen at the Hunstville Stars games. We were season ticket owners and he was part owner of the team and he sat out with the rest of us most of the time, not in a skybox. Everyone always left him alone during the game and then he would kindly chat and give autographs afterward. My daughter babysat his niece and nephew. I played poker with George Jones, his wife Nancy and his Bro in law. He was pretty quiet. His brother in law was a hoot. We had a lot of fun. I won. And won and won… He walked away. Oh… and more recently I met Emmanuel Lewis who played Webster on TV. Very nice and he was not in great health when I saw him.
@lseeber The Rocket City Trash Pandas are a real thing now. They have a store in Bridge Street Town Center.
I don’t think they play their first game until 2020, and I’m not sure if they’ve actually started construction on the stadium yet, but you can put a deposit down on the first round of season tickets.
@Limewater No longer interested in the games. Can’t believe they picked that name. I saw on City data the thread on that. Going to Bridgestreet this week… didn’t realize they had a store. Any idea what they’re going to do with the old Joe Davis Stadium then?
@lseeber Yeah, I’m not actually interested, either. I’m actually kind of pissed that it’s the “Rocket City” Trash Pandas. It’s Madison City taxpayers who are being forced to fund this boondoggle, not Huntsville. I sure didn’t want to spend $20 million for a team that already failed in Mobile. They’re building a new stadium in Madison and leaving the one in Huntsville to rot, presumably.
Oh yeah… and John Stamos around 86 or so. He was an attraction for a local clothing store that was hosting a fashion show. My daughter’s just HAD to meet him! I warned them… “now, he’s not going to look as good in person as he does on tv… you need to know this now”. I was wrong, wrong wrong! The dude looked better in person! Kids got to meet him, have a brief chat and he signed pics for them. (I don’t have access to them)
Sanctioned name dropping?
A few come to mind . . .
Al Gore - long story, but got a hug.
Pierre Salinger - As a preteen knocking on doors, I raised lots of $ for Dems, and was presented a medal by Salinger.
Tiran Porter- came to a barbecue at my house. I forgot that my bbq was rusted through, so I ran to town for a new one and Tiran assembled it for me. Also went to his wedding.
Gary US Bonds when Springsteen promoted his comeback.
Oh, I used to babysit for The Only Alternative and His Other Possibilities - lol.
Also Steve Wozniak - went to his Christmas party in Los Gatos. He surrounded the house with imported snow for the occasion. The house was beautiful, but kind of sterile. Turned out he owned two homes there, and actually lived at the place across the street.
on his last club tour before he started doing stadiums (promoting the album “the End of the World”).
My best buddy and I were big fans, and Lew happened to be playing our local Club around my buddy’s 21st birthday.
I kept i picked him and a couple of our friends up at College(hour or so away), every one but him knew what we were doing that night. the second he saw Lew’s name on the marquee, he lost his shit, ecstatic.
outside the club, between shows, Lewis was selling Cd’s and signing autographs. I got too fangirlish (reminder, I’m a 300lb balding whitey), so the birthday boy asked him if he’d sign my copy of the Cd that i brought from home.
“of Course!, what are ya nuts?”
I go to lots of cons, so I have met lots of celebrities. I was the volunteer assistant for Edgar Winter one weekend con, and my best friend was a “body guard” for William Shatner at another, so I spent a lot of time with those guys. I physically ran into Isaac Asimov and Lou Ferrigno at very different cons. Running into Ferrigno is like hitting a wall. I tripped on stairs and caught myself on Firefly’s Adam Baldwin’s shoulder. I rode an elevator with Alice Cooper (he’s tiny). I’ve had fleeting contact with many cast members of many of my favorite movies and shows. I’ve spent a lot of time at cons going to dinner, art show docent tours, and chatting in koffeeklatches, the green room and con suite with various Sci Fi and fantasy authors and artists. The only one mainstream folks would know is George RR Martin, the current rock star of fantasy authors. But I’ve spent time with Melinda Snodgrass, Poul Anderson, Jack Chalker (he used to throw room parties and sit and write at his computer with 30 people partying in the hotel room with him), Terry Pratchett, Brandon Sanderson, Michael Whelan, David Cherry, Larry Elmore, Donato Giancola, David Gerold, Bob Vardeman, Anne McCaffrey, David Martin, Kelly Freas, Chris Achileos, Todd Lockwood, Liz Danforth, Phil Foglio, Bob Eggleston, Alan Clarke, and lots more. If you are an artist or interested in art, the artist led docent tours and the panels where these pros actually paint or sculpt while you watch are worth the whole convention.