Thursday, November 29, 2007

My Brush With Tom Selleck

This is a very old story, but I thought I'd share it anyway.

Many years ago, a friend and I went to "The Battle of the Network Stars." This was a television special that featured various television celebrities competing in psuedo olympic type events. The whole circus took place at Pepperdine U, near Malibu. I'm not a groupie, nor am I a starstruck fan - it was just something to do, and hey, I was 20.

My now-husband-then-boyfriend was (and still is) pretty terrific - in spite of the fact that my friend and I were going just to oggle the rich and famous guys, he loaned me his very expensive camera, which had a big telephoto lens and an auto-winder - pretty expensive stuff in 1980. He gave me a quick lesson how to use it.

When we got to Pepperdine, I managed to wiggle my way into great viewing spots at every event. The camera looked so professional, security thought I was with the rest of the paparazzi. So, there I am, oggling and clicking, and having a pretty good time with my friend. I didn't really take that many photos, as there weren't that many celebrities I was interested in - I just held it up once in a while so it looked like I belonged there.

One of the last events was a diving event. A new star named Tom Selleck was introduced. Yup, this was pre Magnum P.I. (giving away my age here...) My eyes bugged out - I recognized him from his modeling days for 'Chaz' cologne, which I recall didn't smell all that great. His picture appeared in ads and posters at the department stores where they carried the stuff - I remembered him - he was, in my opinion, pretty darn hot, especially compared with the actor from 'B.J. and the Bear', who was all of about 5'2" tall. Feh.

So, there is Tom, looking pretty damn striking, standing on the high dive, dressed in a really good tan and a pair of short- shorts. Red ones, I recall. NIce amount of body hair. Mustache. About 6'4". wow.

Good diver, too. Nice form.

After the event was over, most of the stars headed off to their trailers or tents, just stopping to give some obligatory autographs and posing for a few pictures. The BJ and the Bear guy had an entire entourage trailing him off to his tent. That's when I spotted Tom, all by himself, tying his shoes on a bench. Alone. Fully clothed (damn.) Not a soul pestering him or a photographer snapping off a few. I made a beeline...

I was a pretty shy person, but I couldn't resist. I went up to him and asked if he'd pose for a few photos. I actually told him I'd seen his picture before, and thought (I can't believe I said it, what a goofball) he was by far the best looking guy there (which he was), and he was going to be famous (inspite of Myra Breckenridge). He looked a little embarrassed, but also thanked me sincerely. He was very obliging, posing with his foot up on the bench, putting his hand on his hip, doing the modeling thing - what a natural. Nice teeth too. I tried to look cool, and like I knew what I was doing, but I was so excited, I'm surprised the camera didn't fog up.

After about 5 minutes or so, his agent told him he had to go, but Tom was really gracious and excused himself - I thanked him. He waved. The day couldn't have ended any better.

The first thing I did when I got home was to rush my film out to the developers. Would you believe it, NONE OF THE PICTURES OF TOM CAME OUT - which explains why there ain't any pictures up on this blog. It was pretty devastating. I don't know what happened, and neither did my hub-then-boyfriend. I almost cried. My brush with fame was nothing more than a story with no pictures.

Ah, the rest is history. As an aside, I think Tom would have made a very good Indiana Jones.

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