I wrote this in the fall of 2002, but I want to take it off of my hard drive and save it here. It’s a funny story, so read it. at the end I have a Postscript/update.
Today in theatres everywhere (10/02-ed), the original 1979 horror classic “Alien” has been re-released. So, in the spirit of the celebration, I’m going to use this occasion to tell my Veronica Cartwright story. I admit It’s really not that great a story, but it is mine, so you’ll just have to deal with it.
If you don’t know who Veronica Cartwright is, you should recognize her from the photo up top. If you still don’t recognize her, then you need to get your butt off the computer and out of the house because she’s been in a lot of movies.
Anyway, the setup: I workout (not anymore -ed.) at 24 hour fitness in Sherman Oaks, which is on the upper floor of the Sherman Oaks Galleria, right next to the Pacific Theatres multiglobiplex. Lots of famous and not-so famous Hollywood characters are always hanging around here, getting in the way. The best way I’ve found to deal with them is to just ignore them, and they’ll generally just let you be. Bruce Willis was an exception, and so was Neve Campbell, but THAT’S another story.
Anyway, one Friday night last spring, I was leaving the gym after a really heavy workout, and was all sweaty and stinky and sore and I wanted to just get away from all the crowds of people standing around in front of the movie theatre, and go home and shower. So I get as far as the down escalator, and there’s this short little woman standing smack dab in front of the escalator, blocking my way, and peering anxiously down at the people coming onto the upward escalator. It’s obvious she can see me waiting, but she also obviously doesn’t care. She’s too intent on her search below. So, I walk right up behind her, in my torn tanktop, bandanna and boots, towering over her. I look down at her and say “Excuse me”…”EXCUSE ME” …She gives me a quick sideways glance out of the corner of her eye, but does not move. The bitch is i g n o r i n g m e. I finally said (loudly) “Jesus CHRIST lady! C’mon! UP or DOWN or MOVE!!”
Then she turns around and it’s ‘ol Veronica Cartwright, pulling the EXACT SAME look of terror she had on her face when she saw the Alien. It was that “ohmygawd” look that only she can do. Immediately she backsprung out of the way, and let me by.
<— This is the EXACT EXPRESSION that I saw on her face
I was thinking as I began my descent, as I looked back up at her, “Wow my sweet Jesus! That’s Veronica Fuckin Cartwright and I got Veronica Cartwright freaked out, by God!”
So fast forward about six months and I was at the Burbank Hilton at a movie memorabilia show. (they have them now and then. you can buy cool movie posters and shit)
Who’s there but good ‘ol Veronica fuckin Cartwright. So I went up to her and asked if she remembered me. No sooner did I say I was sorry and felt bad when her eyes went wide and she broke into a huge grin. “Oh you creep! you scared the (whispers) shit out of me and pissed me off, of course I remember!! She grabbed a newspaper and ran after me and swatted me with it. She was really very nice about it and hugged me afterwards. I charmed her.