It’s that time to look back and reflect on what I’ve done and accomplished over the past year and plan how to better move forward in the year ahead. I’m normally not the type to reflect back and learn any lessons from my behavior, but if this year is any indication – I have a lot of work to do in 2018.
Forget about personal development or being a better person, I’m talking about the important things like quicker camera reflexes and stealth dodging in between publicists or personal assistants. In 2018, my camera skills are gonna be on point!
Not to brag too much, but I did get lucky a lot this year. I got to meet a bunch of cool celebrities and whether you attribute that to the luck of the Irish, the power of the Imodium or just the sheer tenacity of a stalker; it was a banner year in a lot of ways. If for nothing else, any year in which I got to see my Larry David in person (even if I did miss snapping a pic because I broke the cardinal rule of no texting while stalking) is a success.
Despite my best efforts, there were a few mishaps along the way (besides me looking like I was mid-seizure while singing Say You to Lionel Richie-which he didn’t seem to appreciate as much as I thought he should have) For instance, I got cocky with Seal. There he was just a few feet from me taking pictures with a bunch of fans, when he abruptly stopped the pictures and said he had to go. I don’t know if he could tell that I was seconds away from bursting out “You’re never gonna survive, uuuuunless, we get a little craaaazyyyy!!!” or if he just took one look at me and knew no good could come of encouraging a lunatic like this, but I was denied and he passed me by. He wasn’t being dickish and probably was in a rush or maybe he was hungry (even Seals need to eat too) or maybe he had to take a shit or any of the myriad reasons one doesn’t want to be bothered in public by strangers, but I wasn’t prepared for his abrupt halt to the proceedings. My phone was on selfie mode with the camera facing me so by the time I turned it to front facing, this was all I could get because I was looking at him and didn’t want to walk into the window:
If you look at that jaw and the jacket and pants – who else could it be but Seal? He got into his car and poof – he was gone. Seals on the beach are kinda slow moving, but when Seal’s in the Sirius lobby he’s pretty damn fast.
I was at The Today Show one morning feeling great about the good shot I got with Pablo Pascal when I turned and Luke Wilson was right next to me about to enter the building. I could only say “Luke” and try to get my phone out for a picture, but he just smiled and walked away. Normally, the celebrities pull up and unload on the curb, but he just walked up unencumbered and casual. He was promoting the film Brad’s Status, but guess who wasn’t promoting Tony’s status that day? Luke Wilson.
There were a few times when my impatience or the poor timing of Metro North’s morning trains (or as I refer to it – Satan’s sleigh) get the better of me and I missed J.B. Smoove, Naomi Judd, Drew Barrymore, and Carol Burnett. I don’t get myself down about the ones I let get away, I focus on the ones I’ll see tomorrow. Like Annie sang “The stars will come out, tomorrow. Bet your bottom dollar I’ll be stalking, all day long…”
When I saw Scott Ian from Anthrax, he wasn’t taking picture because he was with his son and wife, Pearl Aday (Meat Loaf’s daughter – Little Baby Loaf. No really, she is the actual daughter of the Loaf). They didn’t want to take pictures with their kid which I fully respect and believe it or not, even I have limits and never tread on that. Children are sacred and I never bother anyone with kids because it’s really not cool. When they were bringing Kelly Clarkson’s daughter into The Today Show, some people were snapping away, but seriously – who does that? A) it’s a baby leave her alone and B) that could be my baby – you can’t identify any baby from a quick snap while they’re walking past so fast…
Some people draw a bigger crowd than others and I’m not normally one to compare size, but there is a certain appeal when you’re rocking a huge crowd. But as my wife constantly reassures me, it’s not the size of your crowd – it’s what you do with it that matters. There was no one around when I saw Liev Schreiber and Cat Stevens and they were both awesome. Small crowds, but big personalities and I wasn’t disappointed. The opposite was true of Charlize Theron. Hot as can be and she was packing a big crowd, but no one was getting near her and she wasn’t stopping for anyone.
I’m not sure if this is actually a selfie with her and I, but we are both technically in the picture together so I’m gonna say it counts.
My biggest faux pas, was my most recent. I saw one of the regular security guards from the building rush up and ask for a photo with this guy and his entourage. He happily obliged and they even got all festive-like and took it by the Lobby Christmas Tree. Seeing this occur, me and some of the other regulars went over and waited our turn to meet him, exchange pleasantries, and snap away. It wasn’t until all of us (SEVEN PEOPLE MIND YOU) had taken pictures with him and compared notes outside that we realized there wasn’t one of us that knew who he was. Seriously, we had all just bum rushed someone to take a picture with us by the Christmas Tree with no idea who it was. This isn’t a strange occurrence, as sometimes one person will recognize someone and then we will tell the others afterwards if they don’t know them (like what happened with the people from Love & Hip Hop). It has never happened where none knew who it was. When I met him, I didn’t know who it was but obviously l didn’t want to walk over and say “Hi, can I take a picture with you and then can you tell me who you are?” so I said “I’m Tony, it’s great to meet you.” I thought I was being smooth and that he’d naturally say his name as well, but he only said “Tony, it’s great to meet you – have a great Holiday!”
The security guard didn’t even know and he was the first one to get a picture so I really blame him for this – he told us that he just assumed since he was wearing shades indoors and walking with a bunch of guys that looked like his entourage, that he was probably someone famous. They got into a nice SUV like the celebrities regularly do so he actually might be someone, but my fear is that we bum rushed Jimmy from Accounting on the 23rd floor while he was on the way to his Uber. Let me know if this guy looks familiar to anyone and drop me a line if he does.
So here I am at the end of the year looking over my pictures and working on my posts for next year as I have a bunch of celebrities waiting to have their brushes with Immodium-Abusing infamy told on these hallowed pages. Much more to come my friends – much more to come! Happy New Year and my wish for you is that your hearts be as full this Holiday Season as my stock of Imodium AD is!!!