For letting me be a total geek!
I have not really met anyone of significance before in regards to those sorts of famous people you love and admire to know what meeting one would actually feel like. At least not since I was a young teen and forced the Pharaoh from Joseph & The Amazing Color Dreamcoat to sign my program. Also, in my mind – although they might have some fame – it’s not really a “those people” sort of thing, they’re really just human beings like everyone else. I thought I’d keep my cool no matter who it was – however, at age 37, I met someone I never thought I’d meet – at least not at this stage in my lifetime and surely not at the moment it was presented to me.
I spent the most amazing weekend in New York City with some really great friends. I went for the Del Close Marathon and spent a lot of time just soaking up lovely NYC neighborhoods, fun bars and delicious restaurants. Entertaining ourselves into late hours and learning the NYC public transportation system. I did have a show and that was in there – and Del Close hijinks, that was in there too. However, the entire weekend rests on top of this one moment that impacted my weekend beyond what I could have imagined. Sometimes we don’t consider how a moment can influence a state of being.
I dragged two of my friends down to the DCM party space at 5pm on Saturday evening to enjoy some beer before venturing out on the town. They bought performer passes just to do this with me, because I for whatever reason made this a big to do for my day. We made our way to the balcony to enjoy the fresh air and stood in an uncrowded area and while standing there I recognized Benedict Wong. I thought, “that’s odd, what’s Benedict Wong doing here” in that moment – I wasn’t affected too much, not that he isn’t great and it’d be lovely to meet this man, but I’m only just slightly aware of him from his recent inclusion in the Avengers/Marvel Universe. Then…. I notice that he was speaking to the one and only Peter Serafinowicz. Now perhaps you wouldn’t really know how much you truly admire someone’s work until you see them in person – standing three feet from you, until you start to get nervous and sweaty and evaluate in your mind how you’re going to handle this situation.
I’ve followed Peter Serafinowicz’s career since seeing Shaun of the Dead. Watching whatever I could get my hands on throughout the years. I thought he was utterly delightful in Spy. All in all – he’s Peter Serafinowicz – brilliantly odd and lovely guy.
So yes – back to the event – the moment of reckoning. The two friends I was with did not know who he was, which is a shame they couldn’t share my excitement. It was extremely noticeable to them how it was affecting me…. as I was shaking and giddy and they did enjoy seeing my torment & awe. Now – presented with this opportunity – I thought about letting the moment pass – but of course – if I did – I’d forever regret that decision. The last thing I wanted to do was be terribly awkward and incapable of playing it cool – cause again – he’s just a human being. When two people are deep in conversation – you surely can not interrupt without being a slight nuisance – so I waited for the right moment and in the hopes that I’d be my charming and lovely self, here is what happened:
“Excuse me, could I get a picture with you?”
(Benedict Wong takes picture)
Meanwhile – my friend says to Benedict “I’ll get a picture with you” and then proceeded to ask “What’s your name?”
I asked Peter why he was there – and he told me – I continued to kid him on his interviewing skills – but not without attempting to soften it with a touch on the shoulder and calling him lovely. He did ask why I was there – and I told him – so there’s that – and that was kind of him to take a moment to inquire.
Then he introduced himself – oh duh! tell him your name!
Then a small amount of weirdness until we all departed.
Including this photo and a “why am I holding this?”
Short sweet and all too quick.
Now – I definitely wish I’d done somethings different – I’m hoping the “Could I get a picture with you?” Translated to: “Your awesome and this opportunity is awesome!” Also – I would’ve at least acknowledged Benedict Wong versus just ignoring him. But hopefully, I held myself authentically, not compromising my own integrity in that moment.
Peter was there to promote a new Amazon show “The Tick” — So give it a watch when it’s out.
In the meantime – there’s this: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCi38HMIvRpGgMJ0Tlm1WYdw
And Peter – if you’re seeing this – thank you for making my weekend! and letting me geek out just a little.
And Benedict – if you’re seeing this, I apologize for not giving you a nod. You’re great too and I look forward to your blossoming career!
Have you had a reaction to meeting someone you admire that surprised you? I’d love to hear your story.