On Broadway, across from the Flatiron Building:
I saw Russell Simmons on the street today. He was getting out of a Maybach on 13th to go to Bikram Yoga on Broadway. I knew he was going there because just before then I saw his brother Joey go into Bikram, and Russell had his yoga mat strapped around his back. He was instantly swamped by people taking pictures and shaking his hand. He was gracious and posed for pictures with people on the sidewalk. Here was this man who has given me so much over the past 25 years, some of which I've listened to over and over again, forever a part of my life from the time I discovered it to this day. To name a few: LL Cool J, The Beastie Boys, Slick Rick, Public Enemy, SLAYER!!!!!! (people forget Slayer was on Def Jam) and many others I'm sure I can't recall.
Instead of bum rushing Russell, I said the only thing I thought appropriate as he walked by:
"Thank you for all the music."
Russell looked at me like I was taking a dump in the middle of the street. Mind you, I didn't expect to become his best friend or anything, but I'd have appreciated a smile or even a simple "thank you." I've always thanked celebrities when I meet them. That is, celebrities that have actually had an impact on my life, and they've always been gracious be it Mel Brooks or Lemmy. When I meet a celebrity I admire, I'm not looking to take up their time or grab a picture or an autograph, I just want to let them know that their life has held meaning for me.
You let me down Russell.
(I'm sure he'll be crestfallen if he ever reads this. Yeah right...)