First off, let me just say I still “hate” my editor. He has locked me into this theme of supposedly hating everything, yet I am not a hateful person. I am, in fact a very positive person who finds joy in many things – for example, I love British humor.
Well, it just so happens that on a recent a beautiful Sunday morning at the Loews Hotel in Santa Monica, as I’m signing my bill at the front desk, I glance to my right and freeze; then look away. For a moment I stop breathing and look again at the very tall, lean, slightly balding man with a salt and pepper (mostly salt) mustache. This rather distinguished, handsome man is discussing something with another clerk. I hear bits of his English accent and steal another glimpse. It really is John Cleese.
I want to say something to him but I don’t want to be an obnoxious fan invading his privacy. This man is my hero of comedic actors. I don’t want his autograph or anything useless like that. I simply want to tell him how much I loved his work, including his Wine for the Confused DVD, which has helped inspire my Street Sommeliers project.
I turn toward him but remain dumbstruck, mouthing words that if audible, would still come out all wrong. He glances briefly in my direction twice, but never holds eye contact. I wonder if he thinks I’m crazy like all the other fans and is praying I don’t speak.
This Cleese experience has left me angry and ashamed. Determined not to let this go completely without something to show for it, I discretely stole a snapshot with my blackberry without Mr. Cleese noticing a thing. I hate being star struck.