John Barrowman at the National Theatre, February 11, 2008.
This photo was taken after the platform during the Anything Goes booksigning.
Here is the story of how I met John Barrowman:
Well, okay, I didn't precisely meet him. But I stood in close proximity to him and he smiled at me. That counts, right?
The story begins with me flying to London to attend the Anything Goes platform at the National Theatre. After the talk there would be a booksigning of Anything Goes, John Barrowman's autobiography which he wrote with his sister, Carole.
Yes, you read that correctly. I flew to London to stand in a line. I advise you not to do such a mad thing yourself. Your credit cards will thank you. (Mine hate me.) I can hear you thinking, "she is *such* a fan-girl." Why, yes, I am. Open the dictionary and there's a photo of me as the sole definition of the word. It's sad, really.
So anyway, the talk was very entertaining, both lots of laughs and poignant insights - and all done in a Scottish accent! (sighs blissfully) John has a really positive outlook on life and I am looking forward to reading his book.
In case you are wondering, the theatre was full and the audience itself demonstrated his broad appeal - little kids and adults, the purple-haired and the white-haired.
The booksigning was held after the talk, in the Olivier Theatre foyer. Since I was in the rear of the theatre, I was toward the front of the booksigning line. And, although I didn't know this until I exited past it, this wasn't just any line. This line of fans waiting for his and his sister Carole's signatures extended from the snaking river of people wound about the Olivier Theatre foyer, down three flights of stairs, and out into the ground floor lobby.
I was part of the river of humanity in the Olivier Theatre foyer. I can hear you thinking, "you're insane." But it really wasn't that long of a wait. The crowd was cheery and John and Carole had clearly been taking their caffeine that day. They were both amazingly energetic, jolly, and gracious.
People weren't allowed to take photographs *with* them, as that would slow up the line, but we could take photographs *of* them. So I had my trusty little camera out to snap a photo of John as I got closer and closer to the table. Soon it would be my turn to hand him my copy and watch the Sharpie guided by his long fingers scrawl his name upon the page.
My heart is beating faster. I can think of several different things I want to say. What a great actor he is. How much I enjoy his albums. That the Judoon are after me and I need to transfer my DNA by snogging him right now.
And then he smiled at me.
Okay, what intellect I have just drained out my ears. Can you blame me?
I can hear you thinking, "oh, no, what did you do?" Well, first I lost all concept of syntax. I know my mouth opened. I believe some random words escaped. I think one of them might have been a noun. After that...nothing. Brain like a big, echoing void. I wouldn't be surprised if people faint simply to get away from that feeling.
After that it's pretty much a blur. Both John and Carole were incredibly friendly and kind - they could not have been nicer if I had actually been communicating rationally to them.
I am going to treasure their signatures, my photos, and what memories I have of that night. It was very exciting. And if anyone else stands in line for his autograph - or for any other celebrity's, for that matter - I hope your brain doesn't roam away from you as mind did.
And now I shall go put on my tin foil hat so I won't hear you thinking anymore.