Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Compliments of the couple at the table in the corner

Okay, so I've met a lot of people in my life. I ballroom danced with Bill Clinton, Sir Paul McCartney told me I should be in "Annie" (which sort of ended my girlhood crush on him), and Chris Walken once yelled at me. I'm no stranger to the International Celebrity and it takes a lot to faze me but last night I had an encounter with someone during which I thought I might need to put my head between my legs or seek medical attention.

Kurt and I went to a local Italian restaurant and, shortly after we were seated, a lanky, long-haired man joined a couple and their two little girls at a table nearby. I thought, "That's a kinda weird-looking dude," and then I heard his English accent. . . and then I saw his eyes and my face got really hot and I got a little dizzy. Kurt was mid-sentence about something or other when I interrupted him with, "Oh my God. Oh. My. God. Ohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygod." I can't imagine what must have been going through his head at that moment. "Do not look. I swear to God, I think that's Thom Yorke over there," I said under my breath. Kurt looked into the mirror above my head and said, "Holy shit. I think you're right."
"Ohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygod. What am I going to do?" I asked him.
"What do you mean?"
"Dude, I'm having a panic attack."
"Are you serious?" He started getting out of his chair.
"No. Yes. I'm gonna cry. I think I might poop my pants." I said, feeling light headed.
"Jesus, really?" And then I realized I must have sounded like a Japanese girl seeing Michael Jackson in the mall or something. Only, you know, in English. With less screaming and crying.
"No. Jesus Christ. You don't understand." The waiter came by to take our drink order.
"Dude," I said to him, "I'm gonna have a panic attack."
I glanced over at Thom. "No, not really, just yes, really. Understand? I need some wine."
"The Pinot is nice," he offered.
"Does it have alcohol in it?" I asked. He got the point and hurried to bring me my wine.

Once I had my wine in my sweaty, shaking hands, I took a gulp and a breath and said, "I'm totally fine. I'm fine. You know. Whatever. He's just, you know, a man and whatever. I'm totally fine. . . Oh my GOD! I think he looked over here. Kurt listen, if he comes up to me and asks me to go home with him, I'm going home with him."
"I understand."
"To have sex with him, I mean. Not to like. . . 'Oh, what'd you do at Thom Yorke's house?' 'We just played Scrabble and drank tea'."
"I get it."
"Because, you know. I look really good tonight. What with the not showering today and the no make-up and my frumpy work clothes. I look like I would tear the sheets off his bed. Oh, Kurt, I would TEAR THE SHEETS OFF OF HIS BED."
"I know! I know you would!" He said.

Kurt was excited, too, only in less of a Ive-dreamt-about-having-sex-with-him-multiple-times kinda way. And the rest of the meal, which, by the way, was an anniversary of sorts for us, was spent trying not to look at Thom Yorke, trying to make small talk with each other and occasionally saying, "Dude, you know I have no idea what you've been saying," followed by, "I know. I know."

He asked if I wanted to go up and say something to Thom Yorke and I said, "Dude, are you high??" (Apparently I say "dude" a lot when I'm freaked out) "Dude, are you high??" I said. "What the HELL would I say to Thom Yorke??"
"I'm a big fan?"
"Give me a break. Besides, I'd probably just end up babbling incoherently and drool into his food."
He suggested we have the waiter send over a bottle of wine with our compliments and after a little debate that mostly consisted of me saying, "I don't know! You think? I don't know. I mean, you think? I mean, I don't know!" we decided that if he ordered another glass of wine, we would pay for it. I told the waiter to tell him it was "compliments of the extremely attractive woman over there with the unkempt hair and the big zit on her chin, who's sitting with a dude, but don't worry about the dude because you're on her LIST, so it was agreed to a long time ago." "Or," I said, "you could just say 'compliments of the couple at the table in the corner'."

The second glass of wine was ordered and delivered and I saw our waiter telling the lead singer of Radiohead that the wine came from me and Kurt and I willed my face not to turn red and my eyes to not move anywhere NEAR his direction. The waiter reported back that Thom Yorke seemed genuinely surprised and asked him to thank us for him, which he did and I will admit that I may have been aroused by the thought of Thom Yorke thanking me. It didn't matter that I was a complete stranger being thanked through another complete stranger. I was now a concrete idea in Thom Yorke's head: The lady and bloke who bought me a glass of Pinot Grigio.

Later in the meal, the younger of the two little girls at his table was sitting on his lap and she twisted around, took his face in her hands and KISSED THOM YORKE ON THE MOUTH. She kissed him on the mouth, people. And a little piece of my heart died knowing that this girl has no idea who Thom Yorke is and probably just has a huge crush on her "Uncle Thomas" because he listens to her and plays with her and carries her around and not because he's one of the most influential musicians of the last 2 decades and when he sings, angels cry for joy and everyone is happy, AND SHE PROBABLY WON'T EVEN REMEMBER THIS NIGHT! But I will. Oh, I will.

Okay, I may be taking this a little too far. But I will confess that I looked at that little girl and thought, "You have no idea whose knee your bouncing on. And I am not too proud! I will cut a 2-year-old bitch!" And with that, Uncle Thomas scooped her up and carried her out of the restaurant while she beamed at him, and babbled as incoherently as I would have if I had tried to talk to him.