Part of this post is a little bit cheating as I wrote the encounter with Keanu Reeves several years ago. I have realized recently how relevant it is at the moment to my nerves about hosting a party for the launch of my first young adult novel. It will be a three night long affair and since my book goes live that weekend very few people will have read it yet. I'll be explaining over and over about it. At least -I hope I will, some people will really not care. The party part is very exciting but I am one of those people that has a terrible time keeping my foot out of my mouth. Often I am just trying to make a joke about something but that can go horribly wrong sometimes. In this particular case as you can read in a minute, I simply ran out of patience. Which I do not want to happen as I am truly grateful for each and every person who gives my creative endeavors a glance. My anxiety is at an all time high and I'll be writing more soon about an experience that will tell you why I probably should not worry too much about it. But if you care to read it: The first time I was rude to a celebrity. By accident. I swear.
I have no shame (okay, maybe a little shame) in admitting that roughly fourteen years ago I had a crush on Keanu Reeves. (Tall, dark, moody-what can I say? I have a type.) This little fact came out on a night I was out with my new roommates and as you can imagine: it delighted them to no end.
Thinking I had escaped reproach a few days went by when I came home from work one night to find a pair of tickets to a show for a band called “Dogstar” taped to my bedroom door.
Not entirely realizing what I was doing I went to Cheap-o and asked about the c.d. The entirely adorable, tattooed hipster boy working at the counter was none too thrilled to show me that it was in fact, the band Keanu Reeves played bass in. He informed me that playing bass meant that you were the guy with the money to foot the bill. Not that he was bitter.
I took the c.d. home and gave it a listen. Yes, so it was dreadful. I didn’t think twice about the tickets and went over to visit a friend. I laughingly told her about the tickets and the c.d. thinking she too, would laugh at my terrible decision making. She didn’t. In fact, she had the exact opposite reaction, “Let’s go to the show.”
“Whatever, but I want to go to Bryant Lake Bowl first,” was my response(I was in my big wine drinking phase and oh yeah, all-the-guys-that-work-there-are-hot phase). She agreed to pick me up from work the next night.
I shall now include the fact that at the time I was working in Calhoun Square and yes she was going to pick me up in her mini-van. This is a pertinent piece of information otherwise, I would’ve just walked you know the three blocks or whatever. The reason this is important to my little tale is because I changed clothes in the van on the way to the bar and brushed my hair. That’s it. Five minutes. Maybe.
(A fun little fact about this van is that it was basically a garbage truck. Crap everywhere. Including a dog dish that my friend driving said van once peed in when she was drunk, yep.)
We get to the BLB and sit at the bar. It’s not super busy but there are a of couple guys at the bar. The bartender and I were friendly at this point. He always had something new for me to try so he and I started chatting. Kay (said friend) sits down next to me putting a space between me and the guy closest to me. She turns to me and tells me I look great. I laugh, because you know, I changed in the van.
The guy next to her says, “She should look great because I’m sure she spent hours getting ready.” It was go figure, not said in a particularly nice tone.
Kay turns to him, “What did you say?”
“I said she should look great because I’m sure she spent hours getting ready.”
“Mind your fucking business.”
“Just ignore him Kay.” I really had no interest in getting into it with some random guy. Who had clearly just been dumped.
“Yeah, women think it’s really great to ignore men don’t they?” He leans towards me, “You look like someone I know.”
“Lucky me. Kay, let’s go sit somewhere else.”
“No, fuck him. He can move.” See, Kay liked fights. Especially if there was some sort of perceived threat to women’s rights. There wasn’t, he was just a jerk. I can’t imagine why he got dumped. Plus, I really wanted to have a nice night. Sadly, my idea of a nice night and Kay’s idea of a nice night are different.
I think you can get the idea what the next three hours between them was like. I myself enjoyed wondering things like, “What would make a better pet; a gila monster or Komodo dragon?” and “Belly button lint: friend or foe?” It was far, far more interesting.
The up side was the bartender took pity on me and picked out a great many glasses of wine for me to drink which somewhat helped soften the blow to my wasted evening. My point is: I was drunk.
Kay suddenly jumps up from her seat, “We’re late. The show is already started.”
“Yeah, I mentioned that two hours ago,” I shrugged and kept drinking wine.
Kay’s “date” had wandered off -FINALLY.
“Well, hurry up, I want to go.” Kay started getting it together to leave.
I’m mildly annoyed at this point as it had occurred to me that perhaps I might want to continue to get drunk and insulted by random strangers but, whatever.
As we’re leaving Prince Charming returns and shakes Kay’s hand as if they had some well-thought out spirited debate about something that mattered. Not actually just hurling grade school insults at each other to represent the “honor of the sexes.”
He then turns to me and holds out his hand, “Good Night, beautiful.”
I turn and walk away only to hear my traitorous friend say, “She’s drunk never mind her being rude.”
We get to the club(The Quest, as you Minnesotans know is now gone) and lo and behold the show is over. Imagine that.
People are leaving. O.K. *not* many people and the bouncers are blocking the door not letting anyone in.
So, this of course means Kay goes up to the bouncer and asks if she can go in to use the bathroom. I bet you can guess what his answer was and multiple times at that since she didn’t stop asking.
He finally doesn’t say anything else and just holds up his finger, turns around and goes back into the club and locks the door.
“Fine, I’m gonna go pee in the alley.” Not an unusual occurrence, I might add.
I follow somewhat behind her as she hurries up ahead of me for our classy rendezvous.
I turn a corner to see Kay talking to a girl who looks about 18. In fact, there’s about a dozen women from 18 to about 40 hanging out in the alley. Waiting for the band they inform us.
Kay loves this idea and keeps telling all the girls how much she loves, “Lonestar.”
“Right, I love them.”
This goes on for a while. I’m completely irritated as we wait and wait and wait.
“Kay, can’t we go? I’m tired of this.” I realize that drinking would ACTUALLY be more productive.
“Just a few more minutes.”
They slip right on by.
“OK,” I step in front of her and I’m so annoyed at this point my voice is a bit raised.
“Kay, let’s go. This is stupid. The c.d. sucks and I’m sick of this and what in the hell has Keanu Reeves ever done that is worth a shit? Which, I know is the only reason you want to hang out here and it’s pathetic. He’s the star of a bunch of crappy movies.”
Can you just feel how quiet it was when I turned around and the members of the band we’re standing behind me, Mr. Keanu right in the front.
I think, “Wow, he’s really tall.”
He says, “So, you didn’t like the show?”
I shrug my shoulders.
Kay pushed past me and wouldn’t you know, “I love your band Lonestar.”
No one says anything.
“We didn’t make it to the show.” Common decency would mean I felt awkward and bad at this point. I didn’t. I was still annoyed.
One band member was talking to other girls who, I have no doubt, we’re a lot nicer than the two of us. The other had already gotten in the car.
Kay asks him for an autograph and he just looks at me and laughs.
Keanu points out that Kay has nothing for him to sign or to sign with so he hugs her.
He smiles real big at me and asks if I’ll hug him.
Nope, I didn’t think twice about it. Bad actor or not he’s still really hot and really tall.
And a lot of nicer than I deserve.
He gets in the car and as they’re pulling away he waves to me.
A few days later there’s a review in the City Pages about the show. The first couple of lines contain the phrase “after the band’s putrid set.”
I've added this cat picture to alleviate the idiocy.