It has been awhile since I have had a good one to tell, but this tale is certainly worth telling…
Last Thursday, my dear, sweet-amazing-wonderful-kind-generous-giving friends Wendy and Lance called and invited me to join them for some Karaoke and drinks. I was on my way to have dinner with my new roommate Laura and her Dad who was in from Mississippi to make sure she was going to be safe living in LA and Wendy and Lance were on their way to a business dinner, so we decided to meet at the hotel lobby around 10:00pm.
Once they arrived, Lance said, “Bob, have we got something for you!”, at which time Wendy presented me with a napkin with a big lipstick kiss and the following words…
Then they said, “That’s not all. She’s at the bar waiting to meet you.”
I of course started to **TEAR UP and said, “I can’t. There is no way I can go and meet her.”
Turns out, I could.
So Breda squeezes us into Bobbie Sue (her car) and races us across town to West Hollywood. We get to the club and this guy Ron says, “Oh, you must be Big Gay Bob. Lance and Wendy said so many things about you I expected to see fireworks coming out the top of your head.” Ha, Ha, I thought. Why did he have to call me big????
So we go out to the dance floor where everyone is introducing each other and the one and only Deborah Gibson sees me and says, “BOB!!!!” at which time she gave me one of the most amazing hugs of my life. Then Lance introduces me to Tiffany. Yes, Deb’s rival of the late 80’s. We all finish dancing to the Charlie’s Angels song and Deb decides she is ready to go home (she literally only came to meet me after Lance and Wendy begged her). So we are out at the front of the club and they are taking pictures with each other and Lance says, “Bob get over here!”. So yes, there is **A PICTURE of me with three of pop music’s finest toothaches.
Then Deb is getting ready to leave and she says, “Bob, it was really great to meet you.” And in my determination to not have another Jon Bon Jovi /Harry Connick Jr moment (where I freeze up and can’t speak), I say, “Actually, you have already met me twice, so do you think you could try and remember me next time?”Can you imagine talking to your childhood idol this way??????
She took it well and left and we all went upstairs. We were in a half circle around Tiff and Lance to try and keep out all of the lookie-loos when Tiff fingers me to come over.
“Bob, we have issues.”
“You and I? How could you and I have issues?”
“What is up with you being Deb’s biggest fan?? I had a hit album out the same year!”
What do you say to that???? I tried everything for the rest of the night, but I was constantly putting my foot in my mouth. Tiff was not going to let me get away with this and we fought the rest of the evening because of it.
We left the club and drove down to Koreatown for some Karaoke. Turns out they have the establishments like in Japan where you can rent out private Karaoke rooms that fit about 20 people. When we arrive, Vince Vaughn is outside waiting for us. He is the one that frequents these establishments and was responsible for us being there. Before I knew it, Vince had Tiff singing “I Think We’re Alone Now”. I had an outer-body experience. I was all of a sudden watching through my 13 year old eyes in shock of what I was witness to. Who gets to live a life like this????
So after many songs (including Lance’s disappointment when I tried to be his T-Birds during Summer Nights from Grease and I only knew the girls part) we finally left at around 4:00am. Yes it was a school night. As Tiff was leaving, I promised her I would buy her new album the next day (which I did) and she pretty much ‘whatevered’ me.
Then, Vince Vaughn was saying goodbye to us and he shook my hand and said, “It was nice to meet you.” And I said, (TRUE STORY) “Actually, we met at that Halloween Party this year.”
“Oh, well I am not very good with all of those costumes.”
“I was the wizard that you kept fighting with over the cocktails.”
“Oh yeah, well who won?”
“Me of course.” And with that, I WALKED AWAY!!!!!!! Who the hell do I think I am???????
Now you haven’t heard from me in months, do you think I would reemerge with a short story? Of course not! So fast forward to Saturday afternoon…
So Laura, Mika and I meet up at Sony to take what I thought was going to be only Lance to see the Planet of the Apes set (which is amazing by the way). Instead it turns out *NSYNC is filming their Superbowl promos, so we take all 5 guys and their security over to the set. Then Wendy calls to say we are bringing Lance and Chris to Hermosa Beach for drinks BEFORE WE MEET DEB AND TIFF FOR DINNER AT 7:30PM. Well I am cool as a cucumber all afternoon, even though the shoot went way over and we got to the beach late.
At around 6 o’clock, Chris calls Deb and she decides she is tired and wants to have a Blockbuster evening with her boyfriend. So after they talk, the phone starts passing around and eventually Wendy hands me the phone.
“Hi Bob? It’s Deb Gibson.”
“Hi! Oh My God. I am so sorry I can not believe I was so mean to you the other night!”
“What are you talking about?”
“When I made the comment about from now on, you need to start remembering me.”
“Oh, no, I thought it was funny. You weren’t mean at all.”
“Oh, thank God because the last thing I would ever want to do is be rude.”
From there we talked about her new album coming out (which she let me have an advance copy of as long as I promise to not share it with the internet and I am listening to as I type this) and most importantly I got to say the following, “I just want to say thank you. You should know that you are 75% of the reason I am here in LA and as successful as I am. You really inspired me as a teen to pursue my dreams.”
How often do you get to thank your childhood inspiration?
So Deb and I are good.
Then Tiff comes to the beach and meets us. After I told her I bought the new album and which tracks I liked, it was a big hug and before long we were trading beauty secrets. Did you know olive oil is good for dry skin?
So Tiff and I are good.
Then on Monday night, we went to House of Blues to celebrate Elvis’ birthday. We were meeting the same people that had brought Vince Vaughn to Karaoke, so he was of course with us. When he left at the end of the evening, he made a point to say, “It was nice seeing you AGAIN.”
So Vince and I are good. I am good. Life is good. I love my job. I had a physical this week and I have a clean bill of health. I started therapy in December and as of this morning she says I am a quick study. I am feeling healthy all around. I started my writing class last week with UCLA. I love it. And the biggest news, I start training tomorrow for the San Diego Rock and Roll Marathon. God give me strength.
I hope 2001 is prosperous, exciting and memorable for everyone. I think this is an appropriate time for one of my favorite quotes of all time. One that I try to live my life by.
There is a world full of endless resources.
There is a mind full of outrageous dreams.
There is a place where the two meet.
Anything is Possible
-Deborah Gibson 1990
Happy 2001 to all of my friends and family. May you not only dream your dreams, but actually have the passion to live them.
p.s. below are some explanations to help make my story a little more coherent!
**TEAR UP: as in my eyes welled up with tears. Anyone that knew me in the late 80’s knows there were only 2 people alive as far as I was concerned. Debbie Gibson and Madonna. You can’t spend 13 years fantasizing about getting to hang out with someone and not have this sort of a reaction. I have only joined one fan club in my life and I am still an active member, the DGIF (Debbie Gibson International Fan Club).
**DEBORAH GIBSON: The blonde teen pop diva of the late 80’s with the hits “Lost in your eyes”, “Shake Your Love”, “Only In My Dreams” and “Electric Youth”. She would be today’s equivalent to Britney Spears, only she wore sweatshirts and jeans.
**TIFFANY: The teen pop princess of the malls. Tiff was the one that toured all of the malls with her hits “I Think We’re Alone Now”, “Could’ve Been” and “I Saw Him Standing There”. She would be today’s equivalent of Christina Aguilera only Tiff never spray painted her make-up on.
**A PICTURE: Not only is this picture a big deal to me, the whole night was a milestone. Deb and Tiff have never been in public together before this night. Deb avoided her all of these years especially at the height of their success because she thought Tiff hated her. They only recently began speaking on the phone.
: You can read the whole ridiculous story on my website. But the good news is, I saw him again in December and he remembered me. The bad news is, he also remembered the photo I had him sign.
**HARRY CONNICK JR: Everyone always wants to know what happened with Harry. I have been a huge fan of Harry’s for years. And the night that I finally got to meet him, all I could do was stare. “Your show was great” was all I could muster. Didn’t get a picture with him. He signed a pic for me but I never told him my name so he only signed his. No witty banter. Just total and complete star struck shock. A moment in my life I will never forget or let happen again. Please Lord, don’t ever let me meet Madonna.
**SAN DIEGO ROCK N ROLL MARATHON: Or as I like to refer to it as the NIGHTMARATHON
. You can also relive this hellish encounter complete with computer graphics by clicking on the blue.
A Freshman in High School
Notice the T-Shirt I wore in my Freshman School Photo
For The Very First Time
Matt and I stood outside the back door entrance for 2 1/2 hours just to meet her.
I think I have just turned 16 or 17 in this photo.
Can you not see the
excitement on my face?
I told her I thought I was going to have a heart attack.
Simply put, she said, “please don’t”.
House Of Blues 1997
Proof that we met again for the second time. I was furious with her manager for taking not one, but TWO bad pictures by cropping off the top of my head. In the second picture he barely got my eyeballs in.
How could she not remember this? Of course this is also the same night I told her mom how much better she looks since she started plucking her eyebrows. What? I was just trying to pay her a compliment!