They always say that when you live in L.A. you bump into celebrities all the time. I'm pleased to say that this really isn't the case. At least not for me. I find that your average celebrity treasurers their privacy and likes to stay out of areas where they might be seen by fans.
I was coming home via red-eye from a visit to Pittsburgh. (I think my most recent trip, which is now... not all that recent) Now, you have to understand a very strange quirk I have. When I travel through an airport alone I have what could be called a defense mechanism. Though in all honesty, I'd call it an offense mechanism.
When alone in an airport, the Andrei becomes a Brit. I have been studying, teaching, and practicing accents since about the age of 10. (What else would any self respecting Dr. Who fan do?) Now.. my accent is definitely practiced. I've managed to fool natives. And that really is the test of an accent. I wouldn't go so far as to try to fool a British professor of linguistics.. But there you have it.
I really think it's for amusement more than anything else. It works better in cities where you just don't see as many foreigners. I have one fond memory of a hertz rental desk in Pittsburgh.
"May I see your license?"
"Um, this says California."
(me: Brit) "Yes. That's correct"
"But, you have a British Accent"
(me) "Yes. At the moment."
So... There I am. It is 6ish a.m.-ish in the morning at LAX at the baggage carousel. I am tired and punchy. I look next to me and immediately recognize Ms. Crosby. As previously mentioned the only other celebrity I'd casually run into in L.A. was Jonathan Frakes. I chuckled at the irony.
With full on Brit (And by this time it's become subconscious to the point that I don't realize it's 'switched on') I comment to her"
AF:I'm sorry to trouble you but you look very familiar.
DC:Yes, I'm probably who you think I am.
AF: Thought as much. Strange irony though. I've only run into two people living here that I recognize from shows I watch.
DC: Ironic how?
AF: Well the only other person I've ever casually run into was Jonathan Frakes
DC: Really? We did a show together.
(You know... this statement unto itself says a lot and is really worth thinking about.)
AF: Yes. Thus the irony. Well, I don't mean to be a bother. Just wanted to comment about the irony and make the off handed compliment that I enjoy your work.
(Well this turns into casual small talk until she decides to question me about where in England I'm from)
AF: I'm not actually from England.
DC: I don't understand.
AF: It's an airport thing. I've taught accents and to basically deal with the mundanity of an airport, this one sort of pops out and won't go away.
DC: So you're an actor?
AF: I'd say Aspiring Director if you can call an engineer in software who hasn't done theatre in 3 years Aspiring.
(The glossy eyed look of bewilderment and sheer confusion has descended over Ms. Crosby's eyes)
The conversation slowly trickled away into small talk which eventually trickled away into nothingness. No attention attracted. But I really think I gave her a bit of a brain teaser.
I can describe the situation by illustrating from a George Carlin routine. He suggests that you strive to make people think by giving them intellectual incongruities from time to time.
1) When asked, "How are you today?" Respond with, "I am moderately not unwell, thank you."
2) Drive around with white canes strapped to the front fenders of your car while wearing really dark sunglasses. Make sure to drive very stiffly.
(and my personal favourite)
3) Go to a McDonalds. Order a standard Value meal. The drive-thru drone will tell you how much, take your money and give you food. Go directly to another McDonalds. Order the same value meal. Before the drone can tell you the price, drive up to the window. When he opens it, tell him how much the meal is, set the food (that you just bought at the other McDonalds) on the drive thru window counter, and drive away.
If you're gonna hurt someone... do it by making them think ;)
Note: The exchange with Ms. Crosby was accidental but in hindsight, fun.