SF Sketchfest had a Salute to Gene Wilder last night - a night of Young Frankenstein, a Q&A, and Gene doing a book signing.
I've had the tickets booked for months.
Miriam was less excited by the night than I was - seeing famous people in person doesn't quite interest her as much as me. She's also right in saying that you never quite see them, just their public front. Which is true. cmpriest - don't go changing, ok?
Still - it was Gene Wilder. It was fun. Even if the Q&A was poorly hosted by some unfunny Comedy Central half-hour special reject.
I'd been thinking of what I'd say to him, if I got the chance, and something rinnywee said some years ago stuck in my mind...
Back when we both were in our OMG!Bjork phase I asked what she would say to her if they met. She thought for a second and then emphatically said: just thank you. Bjork's a person, she said, whose work I've enjoyed, and I wouldn't want to be one of those people.
I don't think I fully understood at the time, though I got the meaning, and it has greatly influenced how I think of celebrities.
When I got to Gene at the book signing I said simply "I just want to say thank you for your work. It's been wonderful to watch over the years." he looked up from the book with those twinkling baby-blues and smiled, "thanks, thank you very much."
I may have just been another person in the line to him ( and I'm sure I was) but still.. that moment meant a lot to me.
I could have said so much more, but it would always be too much, and it would never be quite enough. In the end it would boil down to "thank you" and I would have become one of those people.