Monday, March 13, 2006

The Tyrant in NYC
Or, "I See Famous People, Part 108".

I spent the past 5 days in New York City with everyone's favorite little friend, Friend C. It was a fabulous trip. Good weather. No muggings. Lots of fun. I can see why she loves living there. It was tempting for me to stay there and not come home.

Friend C showed me pretty much the whole city. We walked more than I have walked in my entire life. Ever. Since neither of us have any money, we "saw" the sights. Meaning, we walked and subwayed TO everything, but were satisfied without actually paying to do a lot of stuff. It was great. I experienced the awesomeness of the city with a great friend and it was a fabulous vacation.

Some (but not nearly all) highlights:

Best game of Scrabble ever, beating Friend C (C.T. = 358, Friend C. = 166)
Lunch in Central Park
Lunch at Tom's Diner (the Seinfeld diner - good for novelty, but the food - not so much good)
A big giant Gothic cathedral
Syracuse basketball games
Broadway sights
Babysitting kids that aren't mine, nor did I get paid
Ground Zero (not technically a highlight, but a must-see)
Statue of Liberty as seen from the free Staten Island Ferry
Hot Coast Guard guys on the free Staten Island Ferry
Wall Street
Coffee at the Starbucks in one of the 108 Trump Towers
Friend C's $10 Steve Madden shoes
Pancakes at Big Nick's
The biggest slice of pizza in the whole world. Ever.
Lots and lots of Friends episodes
Meeting up with our NYC LOST friends

And of course, the famous people.

Day 2 of my NYC adventure was chock full of famous people sightings. If you know me at all, you know that I can't help but find famous people on my vacations. Day 2 was our first day to really get into the City, and by the end of the day I had seen no less than SIX famous people.

I can't help it. I'm sure you've heard of Gaydar. Well, I have what I like to call Fame-dar. Famous people flock to me. I love them, they love me. I can sense when I am near famous people. Seriously, it's like a sixth sense.

Like, right now I am at home. I sense that there will not be any famous people here tonight. Walking down Broadway in NYC? My Fame-dar went NUTS with the nearness of literally millions of famous people close by.

Really, it's all about being aware at all times. And, it's just really important to watch people all the time. Forget about watching where you're going. Stare at people.

C.T.s famous people sightings in NYC:

1. Caroline Rhea (host of The Biggest Loser, previously a star of Sabrina the Teenage Witch)
I spotted Caroline walking past us on Broadway. She wore a pink coat. She was on the phone and she looked right at me as I walked by. She's kinda short. Friend C was on the phone and missed the whole thing.

2. Paula Zahn (CNN)
I spotted Paula walking past us as we came out of Central Park, near the CNN building. She was on the phone, but she did not look at me. She wore a long black coat. She's way tall.

3. Three guys from SNL
This was my first famous person sighting of the trip. We were walking through Rockefeller Center and I noticed some cameras were set up. Then I noticed the cameras were all pointed at Seth Meyers, Andy Samberg, and Will Forte from Saturday Night Live. They were taping a skit for SNL.

As usual, Friend C had no idea what was going on until I said, "Look. Famous people from SNL right there." Really, what would people do without me to point out the famous people around us?

We watched them tape some of the skit. And yes, they do read every single word from cue cards.

4. Now, the last famous person story is awesome for several reasons. She's probably the least famous person out of all the famous people I found in NYC. But, she's got the best story.

For several weeks, Friend C has been through some job woes. Job possibilities coming and going, specifically one possibility as a bartender at one of her favorite local establishments. She frequents this place, has made friends with the manager (we'll call him Carlos). She thought she could certainly get the job of female bartender at this fine establishment.

Well, she didn't get the job. Some other skinny blonde girl got the job. So, Friend C takes me to this place on Friday since she and her friends typically go every Friday night. And sure enough, Tall Skinny Bartender Girl shows up and starts serving drinks at the bar where we happened to be sitting.

Here's what happened next:

Friend C: Yeah, that's the Tall Skinny Blonde Girl who stole my job. We hate her.
CT: Um, she looks familiar.
Friend C: No way. You don't live here. No way you could know her.
CT: Yeah, I'm pretty sure she looks like one of the girls from America's Next Top Model. How funny would that be?
Friend C: Impossible. No way.

I sit there for a few minutes, trying not to blatantly stare. But of course, I'm staring while my brain flips through all of the thousands of reality TV people I have catalogued from years of watching a LOT of reality TV.

Tall Skinny Blonde Girl (TSBG) is now standing right in front of us, and she asks us if we need anything. We say we're fine. Friend C refuses to order anything from this girl who stole her job, and I'm too busy trying to figure out who she is to think of anything to order.

CT: I think her name starts with a K.
Friend C: Stop it. YOU DO NOT KNOW HER.
CT: Kay... um.... Kayla?
Friend C: (gives CT a dirty look)
CT: Yeah, I think she's the one who came in second place two seasons ago. Ask Carlos what her name is.
Friend C: No.

I stare at TSBG some more, watching her spill drinks all over the floor. She's definitely hot, and I am positive she is familiar, but she's a terrible bartender.

Friend C: FINE. Carlos, what's the new girl's name?
Carlos: Kahlen. Yeah, she's kinda famous...
CT: From America's Next Top Model, right?
Carlos: (nods)


Friend C: (to CT) You watch too much TV

Naturally, I am thrilled. This has made my day. After watching 5 seasons of ANTM, I've finally met one of the models. On accident no less. At this place that I've been hearing about from Friend C for months. And, now I can keep tabs on her every week while Friend C goes for her weekly happy hour get together with her friends. Kahlen will soon be one of my new best friends.

Friend C was less than thrilled at this new insight as to why she did not get the bartender job. She lost out to a model....

Personally, I think it's the best story in the world. Ever. And thank goodness I was there to bring all of this to light.

It's not entirely unlike the time I took Friend A to the emergency room for her toe, and I recognized the nurse who taped her toe was Brook Pemberton, one of the bachelors from The Bachelorette. It is odd how reality TV fun for me seems to come at the expense of my friends...

The next day, there were no famous people. We were not in the Famous People Zones. And the last day it rained, and it's a well-known fact that famous people do not go out in the rain. They melt or something.

I did spot our own little famous person, seen here in Central Park:

And of course, what's a trip to NYC without pizza from this quaint little pizza joint near Times Square:

Good times. But it really is exhausting attracting so many famous people.


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