Thursday, July 21, 2005

I was star-struck alright

Recently, some friends and I were discussing famous people we had seen or had contact-with in our lives. Living near Chicago, it is not uncommon to see a famous face once in awhile. It was fun to hear everyone’s experiences with the jet set crowd. I was in close competition, having had dinner with Jim Craig (goalie for the Miracle On Ice Olympic hockey team) and having been in charge of meeting and greeting golfer Chi Chi Rodriguez all in THE SAME EVENING. The Jim Craig thing was a complete fluke…he was eating alone and we invited him to sit at our table at a hotel in Orlando. It was very cool…I am a huge hockey fan. Chi Chi Rodriguez was our guest at the company event we were having in Florida. I met him at the airport and even got to sit in the pilot seat of his private jet. He is a very nice guy and was very amused with the fact that I flunked golf in high school. Anyway, aside from all of that (which I do think was probably one of the coolest nights of my life), in my group of peers, I won the award for the most embarrassing moment with a celebrity.

Last year, my boss asked if several of us were interested in attending a luncheon benefit for Multiple Sclerosis. The guest speaker was going to be Teri Garr, the actress who was in The Black Stallion, Tootsie, and a many other films as well as TV. She also happens to have MS. Being involved in working with people who have disabilities, I agreed to attend. Besides, it meant a 2-hour lunch!

Back up: The lunch was on a Monday. H & I had spent the weekend at our cottage, boozing it up and eating bad junk food. In shopping for this weekend jaunt to our darker side, I had purchased, on sale, some fat-free potato chips. They contained Olestra, which I knew nothing about, except for the fact it made the chips fat free. In light of the rest of the crap we were going to eat, fat free chips seemed to be a bit of redemption from all things junky, greasy, and alcoholic. H & I ate, drank, and were merry for the entire weekend. (Note: These are the weekends I miss in this summer of ProjectHouseFromHell) One thing I ate plenty of was the fat free chips that contained Olestra.

Back to the luncheon: At the luncheon, we were seated at a table in the middle of a large banquet room. It was all very social and nice. I generously donated to the cause, ate my salad, and pocketed the nice promotional goodies on my placemat. After the lunch there was a presentation on MS and, of course, Teri Garr. I was feeling a little queasy; however, I figured it was some hangover residue from my weekend. Terri Garr was introduced to rousing and eager applause. As she proceeded thru her speech, my stomach began its intestinal dance. It gurgled and blubbed and I suddenly knew exactly what was coming. Swiftly down the pipes, mind you. I also suddenly knew the “wrath of Olestra”. Yipes. I tried to concentrate on Teri Garr and ignore the sweats and chills I was feeling. I surveyed the room and, being seated in the middle, decided that bolting for the jon was a no-go. I stuck it out. At the end of Teri’s speech and during the standing ovation, I excused myself and literally sprinted to the ladies room. I was safely seated and belted in when I had THE WORST diarrhea I have ever, EVER experienced. I hate to be gross, but think convulsions. I thought I was going to pass out. After losing the majority of my internal organs, I closed my eyes and tried to relax and get myself together. It was then that I heard, from the stall RIGHT NEXT TO ME, “Do you think I sounded ok?” Another woman answered and a kid’s voice said, “Yeah mom, you did great.” OMG, someone was IN the bathroom with me. Someone was peeing right next to me. That someone, I realized after a moment, was Teri Garr. Who on earth takes a huge shit right next to the star of The Black Stallion? Who on earth nearly passes out from diarrhea right next to the woman who was nominated for an academy award for Tootsie? Yep, the girl who partied with the Olestra-laced potato chips. My friends think this is hilarious. The vision of me sitting on the pot debating whether I should stay in the stall until Teri Garr and her daughter and everyone were out of the bathroom or whether I should casually exit the stall and, while making a big point of washing my hands, say, “Oh, hi! Aren’t you Teri Garr?” But then if I did that, wouldn’t it be weird to shake hands with her, even after so obviously washing them? I took the I-am-too-embarrassed-to-move route and stayed in the stall until they left. But I rented The Black Stallion that very same week. :)


Christine said...

Your story had me going through some serious convulsions here at my desk. And here I thought that talk about Olestra was just negative publicity.

I LOVE Teri Garr. And I've never even seen Black Stallion.

trane60 said...

I had a pee with Mark Harmon once. It didn't dawn on me who it was. I was just annoyed that he was making small talk and not observing the unwritten men's room rule of "eyes front, no talking". It wasn't until I left the restroom and a couple of women from the office asked "did you see it?" "See what? "Mark Harmon's penis?" "Oh man, stop that! No! Is that who that was?"