Get the stopwatch going. My fifteen minutes of fame have officially begun. While I am going to share my little moment in the spotlight with you, I thought it would be enjoyable to read about your random moments of stardom. So please post a comment or two sharing the times when you were a minor celebrity for a few brief shining moments. I'll hold a vote later this week to see who the most famous person is who reads this blog. Who knows - maybe your fifteen minutes of fame will be winning this prestigious award.
Most of us at one point or another have appeared on the local news, been quoted in the paper, were part of the audience of a taping of The Price is Right, or ended up on "America's Dumbest Criminals". We then buy forty copies of the newspaper that featured us or we pop the tab from the VHS tape that documents our brief moment of fame in order to preserve the evidence through the Millennium. We want our stardom to live on forever so that in 2051 we can tell our grandkids, "See. Your gran-pappy was once interviewed by the Channel 8 weekend weather girl about how hot it got one day. Let me put my teeth back in and I'll tell you all about it."
The NMW had better get the scrapbook ready for the grandkids because Sheena McFarland of the Salt Lake Tribune gave a quick shout out to my blog in her column about the Breaking Dawn release last Friday (read it here). Sheena and I even spoke for a few minutes over the phone. I felt so official when she put me "on the record" and was grateful that she honored my request to not disclose my name. I needed anonymity in order to prevent the Guatemalan authorities from pounding down my door. It's a long story. (Come on, I'm just kidding. But if anybody asks if you have ever heard of Fernando Omar de la Cruz Quizpes Pachecho, just play dumb for my sake, okay?)
Most of my previous "fifteen minutes of fame" moments happened while I was playing high school basketball from 1991-1993, so I was a little rusty with Sheena. I gave her one or two quotes that made her chuckle and I thought they might appear in the paper, but they didn't. During high school my younger brother was a junior when I was a senior and we were the two leading scorers on our varsity team. There were a lot of "basketball brothers" stories in our high school and local papers and our names were usually mentioned in the Deseret News and Salt Lake Tribune game summary write ups. Here are a few of my other random celebrity moments:
-I was in a few episodes of "Romper Room" when I was like five or six years old. My run on the show was brief after the producers kicked me off due to a number of "creative differences" I had with Mr. Do Bee.
-One of my ward members made a low-budget movie called "The Rabbit" and need to cast, "an annoying, rambunctious, prepubescent rascal" and called me immediately. He was my Deacon's Quorum Advisor at the time and told me to, "just be myself" when the cameras started rolling.
-While serving as a missionary for the LDS church in Northern Chile I was escorted at gunpoint by a Chilean military guard for accidentally tracting in army housing. The guard shoved an M-16 in my back and led my companion and me to see the General of the regiment where we had accidentally ventured. I was honestly thinking that an international incident was about to unfold and Tom Brokaw would be somberly reporting, "Two American missionaries have been taken hostage by the Chilean military..." Fortunately the General just screamed at us for a few minutes and told us to get lost.
While my fifteen minutes of fame moments have been on the decrease since the 1990's, my Normal Mormon Wife has been quite the local celeb over the past few years. She tried out for American Idol in 2005 and while she was not selected to sing in front of the judges, you could see her face in one of the quick audience shots. We ended taping that episode and re-watched it a dozen times by hitting "play-pause-play-pause-play-pause" as the camera ventured into her area. We then took a photo of the TV screen and emailed it off to all of our family and friends. The NMW also entered a Clay Aiken sound alike contest at the mall, took third place, and won some gift certificates. The local news cameras and newspapers were on hand and she was featured on the late-night news and had her picture in the paper the next day. Thank goodness TMZ had not yet burst on the scene when the NMW hit celebrity status or the paparazzi would have been unbearable. I might have even had to pull a Bjork on somebody.
By the time you have read this post, my fifteen minutes of fame will have dwindled down to about eight. Please post your brushes with greatness so that I can bask in your reflected glow once my remaining eight minutes are gone.
Whoops, make that seven....