Friday, December 28, 2007

Let's Get Small

I fear Steve Martin. There, I've said it. He's the only person in show business that I haven't really met yet, and I'm sure that if we do meet the exchange will veer way too close to Chris Farley's interview of Paul McCartney on SNL so many years ago.
Tom (sweating profusely) : You know that ...uh... arrow through your head thing?
Steve (uncomfortably) : Why, yes, I do.
Tom (after a ridiculous pause, feigning relaxation) : That was really good.
Steve Martin was just given the Kennedy Center honor by the President, and I just finished his recent book, "Born Standing Up," which I read and enjoyed very much. At the height of his popularity, Steve Martin appeared at the Gammage Auditorium at Arizona State University in 1977 and I somehow scored tickets in the third row, where I was electrified by his crazed performance as a few thousand rabid fans went bonkers. In the middle of his act, he chose me, sitting there in the third row, to stand up and speak to him. He did a stupid magic trick with me, asked me questions, made fun of my answers, and finally said "Sorry, Tom...Just havin' a little your expense."
I thought that I had accomplished all that would be necessary to consider my life a fabulous success, and would have greeted a bolt of lightning with good humor and a shrug.
Congratulations, Steve.


Heather Meadows said...

Steve Martin is awesome. I think my brother is his biggest fan. He can relate pretty much anything to a Steve Martin bit or movie. Also, I found a copy of Cruel Shoes at Goodwill for 50 cents once, and of course I bought it immediately. My brother borrowed the book and never gave it back. When I later confronted him about it, he said I had given it to him...a lie he will still tell you today. He still has my damn book!

Jacob Glidewell said...

Having been the guy in the front row of two of your amazing shows at the Addison Improv, Tom, and having been spotlighted by you twice--and making a fool of myself BOTH times without any help from you--I must say I'm amazed you survived such a close encounter with Steve. I shook Steve's hand once, smiling like an idiot and no doubt red as a fresh tomato, but he was kind and smiled back, offering a quick "Hi" before he walked on by. Not like Tom who "Biffed" me at the start of his show, knocking on my forehead and crying out in a voice I've feared since I was eight years old, "Hello! Hello! Anybody home?"

Dumbfounded as I was by that, I still consider it an honor.

happyjoebennett said...

I just discovered your blog and so glad I did.
I am currently listening to his book (I normally read, but Steve Martin actually does the reading) and love it.
Are you planning any trips to KY?

Tom Gryder said...

WOW! That takes me back 30-years. Thanks a LOT, Thomas F.!