Friday, March 20, 2009

Random Celebrity Interactions

At exactly 12:46am on Thursday, March 19, 2009, I was jarred awake by the sound of my cell phone, which had just alerted me that I had a new text message. After anxiously fumbling for a moment to find my phone, I flipped it open to see this message from my cousin Annie: "I met Shooter McGavin today in NYC!" Too tired to really think about this - and quite frankly, relieved that it wasn't bad news - I closed the phone and went back to sleep.

The next morning, I looked at the text message again and it finally hit me: Christopher McDonald, the actor who plays Shooter McGavin...the antagonist character from the Adam Sandler film, Happy Gilmore! But what on earth was the connection? I texted Annie back and got this response: "I walked up to him on 59th Street and said, 'Hi, my name is Anne and I loved you in Happy Gilmore!' He said, 'Thanks Anne.' We shook hands."

"You just stay out of my way...or you'll pay...listen to what I say!"

It turns out my cousin was with a group of friends in New York at the time and none of them had any clue who he was...that is, except for Annie, who recognized him immediately despite his new look (bleach blonde hair and thick glasses).

The funniest aspect of this, in my opinion, is that Christopher McDonald has been in 85 films to date, most of which are probably serious works of art that required a great deal of dramatic acting skill. But my guess is that, just like this interaction with Annie, he probably gets recognized most for his role as a complete schmuck in the aforementioned 1996 Adam Sandler slapstick. I'm sure he just loves that!

This isn't the first time that Annie has run into a celebrity in New York. Several years ago, I came home to a message on my answering machine that said something to the effect of "Hey Alan, guess what? I ran into Derek Jeter today!" Now, mind you, my cousin cares nothing for baseball and knows very little of the men who play the game for a living. Any time I even reference the subject around her, she goes into a state of deep hypnosis. And now, she's not only running into Derek Jeter, but also recognizing him and even stopping him for a photo op?

My cousin Annie (right) and her friend, along with Yankee bum Derek Jeter.

Oddly enough, it was Annie who first spotted Jeter on the street. Either that, or she was the first one who had the guts to approach him. After that picture was taken he was mobbed by fans, at which point Annie and her friend took off in a blaze of glory.

I asked Annie what her secret she always ends up running into high profile people. She responded, "I've always got my eyes roaming in NYC. I love seeing and meeting celebs!"

That got me thinking as to how many celebrities I might have unknowingly walked right past throughout my lifetime. I guess I've got to start "roaming" with my eyes a little more.


  1. I met Doug Glanville once... got his autograph :)

  2. Finally, an article about ME. :o) Actually, Alan, when I was auditioning for a broadway musical a few years ago, Kevin Spacey bumped into me in the hallway, which was SO exciting. I was speechless and couldn't say anything to him. :o) Then there was the time when I bumped into Lawrence Fishburn backstage at fashion week in Bryant Park. Have I mentioned how much I love New York City?

  3. And as we can see, the celebrity list goes on and on...

  4. This is one of those questions I like to ask at parties... have you ever met a celebrity? What's your craziest transportation story? What's your favorite dream? You know, the type of question that invokes a good story from everyone.