Celebrity Paparazzi, Becoming A Fly On The Wall


Today’s question comes from Adelaide Trunk, from Will O’ the Wisp Township, South Dakota.  Adelaide asks, “If you could be a fly on the wall in the home of any celebrity in the world, whose wall would it be?”

Thank you for your question this week, Adelaide.  Before I answer, I do have to tell you that I actually spent one night in Will O’ the Wisp in August, 1994 and as someone who has been all over this great country of ours, you and your fellow citizens should be proud to know that your town has the loudest locusts I have ever heard.

While I enjoy celebrities and their culture, I am not as interested in learning too much about them on a personal level as I once was.  Years ago I ran into an elderly couple in a parking lot at a Vons Supermarket who were struggling to get their groceries into the trunk of their car because the shopping cart kept rolling away and when the woman turned to retrieve it, her husband, who was not very stable, kept falling backwards into the trunk.  I assisted the couple in getting their groceries situated and in the course of our conversation, they informed me that they used to run the household of Dan Blocker, one of my favorite actors and the cornerstone of “Bonanza”, undoubtedly the greatest television program ever produced to accurately depict frontier bachelor life in the 1800’s.

Actor Dan Blocker

Of course, I was very excited to meet someone who knew my idol. “Boy, Dan Blocker.  Wow, that must be something!  Is he as nice a man as he seems on TV,” I asked.   The couple exchanged glances and then the woman said, “Let’s just say you wouldn’t want to play Scrabble with him.  Makes up his own words and if you challenge him…”   The man drew his finger across his neck before shooting his arm out and snatching a handful of my shirt to prevent himself from tumbling back into the trunk again.  “You’re off the Ponderosa.”

Needless to say, Adelaide, when you learn your hero has feet of clay just like everybody else, it can be a very deflating and disheartening experience and I learned my lesson with Dan Blocker.  I’ve found it best to play it safe and just enjoy the professional work of my favorite stars and to steer far away from their personal lives. Not that there would ever be any skeletons in the closet of my all time favorite star of the 80’s, 90’s and 2000’s, Mel Gibson, but why take chances?

That said, I won’t shy away from your question and will answer it forthwith.   I hope that’s the proper use of that word, “forthwith”.   I’ve been thinking about using it in a sentence for years but was afraid it would be in the wrong context and I’d get nasty letters but my wife said, “Just put it in your bucket list and go for it!”  So what the heck, you only live once.

If I could be a fly on the wall in the home of any celebrity in the world, it would be Christopher Walken’s house because everything he says makes me laugh and I would love to know what it sounds like when a fly laughs.  Assuming they have ears.

© 2013 The Monkey Bellhop and John Hartnett

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