Bad Meetings With Great People

To the outside world, being a journalist may seem all beer and kickbacks, and granted, there are some perks to the job: we get free stuff; we get to make up stories, print them as fact, and then get a book and/or movie deal after we're found out; and we get access to famous people. Some of these famous people are great; some are accomplished, admired even, while some of them are Marie Osmond and Carly Simon's sister. The point is fame isn't all it's cracked up to be—unless you've never been famous, then it's way better than you could ever imagine. The point is ask any reporter about the famous people they've met, and there are bound to be more than a few stories about famous encounters going horribly wrong; meetings that bristled with disappointment, misunderstanding, boorishness and peeing next to Dave Alvin. The point is John Waters' new movie, A Dirty Shame, reminded us of one of the legendary bad brushes with fame in Weekly history involving Waters and Weekly music editor Chris Ziegler. The telling of that tale inspired the rest of us to tell these stories of fame, disenchantment and Carly Simon's sister.

JOHN WATERS

We were drinking purposefully in the parking lot for about 20 minutes, and then we slid into the Lido Theatre for the Newport Beach Film Festival to see John Waters' Polyester and, if possible, get shitty drunk and act like trash, in the same spirit as the scratch-and-sniff cards they were handing out—to enhance the experience by being the sort of people we ourselves would hope to see at a John Waters movie. So clink-clink-clunk went the poor empty whiskey bottle as it rolled solemnly down the aisle, smacking into the foot of the stage with such an exclamation point that the whole theater giggled. In film school, they'd call that foreshadowing. Then we cheered for Stiv Bators—lamely and without a lot of hard consonants, since it was getting deep into bottle No. 2 or maybe No. 3—and then oops, it was time for open bar at the Hard Rock Cafe. I kinda go through life in a haze anyway, but this was by now an Orson Welles sort of drunk that ably edited out all but the most essential bits of plot, and so without having to waste any consciousness on a boring car ride, there I was with some free something in a glass in a big hot someplace with some people doing stuff. I couldn't tell what, exactly, but I sure could tell that John Waters was right in front of me, and right then, I sure liked him a lot. And there was no reason not to say that really loudly over and over, pausing only maybe to hold my glass up to the light, if those were really lights and not just boozy little slivers of my optic nerves spontaneously combusting, and maybe ask for a refill. I mean, the way I remember it—or the way I remember the parts I remember—is nothing but lovely times until John Waters waves his spotty hand and two big dudes hoist me up by the underarms and—just like the movies!—toss me out on my actual ass, which is something that should happen to everyone at least once just so you can wince knowingly when you see it happen onscreen to Jim Rockford. But I guess I was yelling stuff. I guess I tend to yell a lot of stuff. Somehow I got home (I lived above a liquor store; coincidence, unless God was trying to test me) and I barfed a little blood (see, my mom is freaking out and calling me RIGHT NOW, perfectly synchronized with all the nice girls I know deleting me from their phone books also RIGHT NOW; cheap laughs should really be cheaper), but even now I don't rate it too seriously, and I woke up in the morning when COMMIE GIRL called me up and asked—with a certain relish—what the fuck was wrong with me last night? Was I HIGH? And I wasn't sure who she was because my brain was still lacking a lot of traction, so I—with a certain woozy dignity—said, no, man, I was just regular DRUNK. But the weird thing was I was barely hung-over. You know why? Stupidity metabolizes alcohol. If that doesn't kill you, it'll one day save your life. (Chris Ziegler)

MARIE OSMOND

Grew up watching Donny and Marie Osmond. Never particularly impressed by Ms. Osmond's looks. But all grown up, interviewing her in a Universal City hotel room on the occasion of her starring in a touring production of The Sound of Music, it became apparent to me that this was one hot lady. Now, it was just her and me. Her press person had darted out for something. Probably not coffee. I asked Ms. Osmond some redundant question about what she found interesting about the play. She glanced out a window at the nearby freeway and began answering. I looked down at my notepad to scribble some notes when, suddenly, I saw . . . them. The upper third of her breasticals, ample and full, crying out for release from the hot, sticky confines of her low-cut shirt. Delicious ivory globules. Quintessentially perfect Mormon mammaries. My gaze lingered too long. She stopped talking. I looked up. Her eyes were locked on mine. Marie Osmond caught me looking at her tits. It's never gotten any better than that for me. And I suspect, somewhere in Utah, Marie smiles about it every now and then. (Joel Beers)

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