Picture from http://pictures.spacebar.org/
Ira is one of our favorites. Maybe because he's so humble or so untypical of a celebrity. From the one time we saw him "perform" in Seattle and listening to him on the radio, he seems charming, relate-able but quite frankly, just doing his job. Still, Ira does possess "magic fame sparkles" that made an entire Seattle audience earlier this year downright giddy in his presence. Like we were all on a first date or something.
So this last weekend when we went to Pullman, Ira spoke in Portland to promote his new book and Mom & Cindy went to the show. Afterwards they stood in line for 30 minutes to get Cindy's copy signed. Once they got up to him, he chatted with them a bit then Mother told him that Ken & I are big fans and wondered if he would sign something for us. And he did.
In Mother's exact words, he was "an absolutely charming, engaging man." He asked for the exact spellings of our names and was very precise about getting it right. He even commented about Mom's deep voice and asked her if she'd ever smoked. (Indeed she once did.) The important thing though was that he was cordial, engaging and patient with my mom and nice enough to sign something to two people who weren't even there. It delighted me to find out just how nice he was. So often famous people can disappoint you, because after all, they're just people too. But Ira, you're aces. Thanks for that.
Earlier this summer, I got the chance to meet and watch one of the best female pool players in the world, Jeanette Lee. If you play pool at all or watch it on ESPN2, you'll probably recognize her. She was at a party King.com hosted during the Casual Games Conference in Seattle. I was thrilled to meet this woman who not only played incredible pool but had written a comprehensive book on succeeding in pool and in life. Very beautiful, talented & gracious. And of course I was glad because sometimes celebs can be, um, not beautiful, talented and gracious.
I'm sure it's difficult to live up to the expectations of a public that always wants something from you. But I hope that as an audience, we're keeping up our end of the bargain by validating your work, discipline and sacrifice with appreciation and interest that is good-natured and not creepy.