I’m so pissed off. One of my friends moved into a new apartment building a couple of months ago. “You’ll never guess who lives in the building with me!” he started telling me. He was way too excited, way too happy. I could just tell by the look on his face that I’d wind up resenting whatever words came out of his mouth. “Keanu Reeves!” Yup.
I tried to at least not look pissed off, but I probably didn’t do too good of a job. At least I didn’t go right ahead and tell him exactly what I was thinking, which was, so what? You live in the same building as Keanu Reeves? Big deal. Seriously, how is that at all news, at all something to be even remotely happy about let alone gushing with excitement? I live with tons of other people. I don’t even know anybody’s name.
What, do you think all of the sudden because you happen to live in close proximity to a celebrity that you two are going to somehow hit it off? Be friends? “Maybe he’ll knock on my door someday to borrow a cup of sugar!” my friend offered. Please, nobody borrows sugar. That’s ridiculous. If ever found myself in the position where I was in the middle of cooking or baking something, and I realized that not only did I not have any sugar, but I needed a whole cup, like a whole package of sugar, I’d either run to a store and buy some, or more likely, I’d just give up the whole project right there and throw everything away. Because obviously I hadn’t thought this through. Obviously I got way too impulsive about baking, about just throwing a bunch of ingredients in a bowl without even bothering to stop and think to myself, wait a second, do I have any sugar? Do I know how to bake? I tell you what I’m not going to do. I’m not going to start knocking on a bunch of random neighbor’s doors asking them for free groceries. If somebody ever came to my house with an empty measuring cup in hand, I’d take the measuring cup, tell them to wait there one second, and then I’d go inside the house and lock the door. I wouldn’t answer for the rest of the day.
But that’s not what I’m pissed off about. I mean, yeah, I guess I got a little pissed off there, but what I’m really pissed off about is the fact that he did it, my friend, he’s actually like friends with Keanu now. I don’t know how it happened. Well, I know the details of the how, but I just can’t figure out why. They were in the elevator or something and my friend couldn’t help himself. “Oh my God! I loved you in The Replacements!” or something like that. If I were a celebrity, I’d be so annoyed. But not Keanu. They hit it off.
They did like a karaoke night thing at his place the other night. And guess who wasn’t invited? “Oh, you know how it is,” my friend tried to tell me, “I don’t want to impose.” Yeah, he didn’t want to impose at the party, but he had no problem imposing on Keanu’s elevator ride. Isn’t that like an invasion of personal space or something? And it didn’t work for me. I spent like an entire afternoon riding up and down in that same elevator, hoping I’d get my own celebrity run-in.
And I did, I got it, Keanu finally showed up. But it wasn’t just Keanu and me, there was also some old lady in the elevator with us. She had already been up and down like five times that day. I know because I was there every time. On her fourth trip, she must have assumed that I was like an elevator boy, because she just walked in and said, “Twelve, please,” and I was like, “Excuse me, I’m not an elevator boy, you can’t tell me what to do,” and she said, “Elevator boy? Could please just push the twelve button for me? So I did, but only after I pushed two through eleven first.
Anyway, she gives me this dirty look when she walks in, but completely forgets about me once she realizes that she’s sharing my elevator ride with Keanu. “Oh my God!” she starts gushing, “I just loved that movie that you were in with Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson! You know, the one where Diane Keaton flashes the camera? What a great movie!” and Keanu was like, “Hey, thanks a lot. See you around.” And the next thing I knew it was Keanu’s floor, and he was getting ready to get off, and I hadn’t even gotten to say anything to him, like anything at all, and I really wanted to go to that karaoke party.
So as he stepped out of the elevator I kind of shouted, “Wait! Keanu! I loved Bill and Ted! Wait, I mean The Matrix! I loved The Matrix!” and as the elevator door closed, he said something to me like, “Man, those movies came out a long time ago buddy.” And that was it. I banged on the door really hard and screamed, “I love karaoke!” hoping that he heard me through the metal. I think he did, but still, he had no idea who I was or how we might get in contact with one another.
Which was such a shame, because if that stupid lady wasn’t there, I had such a good plan. I had this newspaper with me opened up to a crossword puzzle, and when Keanu stepped into the elevator, I was going to be staring at the paper, like totally not even paying attention to Keanu at all, like it could have been just anybody that walked in. And I would’ve said without looking up, “Hey man, do you know a seven-letter word for ‘empty orchestra’ Japanese origin?” And he would have said, “karaoke,” and I would have made a little show of counting out the letters, looking a little puzzled but then finally relieved when I figured out that it fit. And I’d look up and say, “Hey, thanks a lot.” And he’d say, “Sure, no problem. It’s funny you mention karaoke. I’m having a karaoke party at my place tomorrow night. You live here, right?” And I’d say, “Yeah, sure,” and then I’d stick out my hand and say, “Rob. And you are?” “Oh, I’m sorry,” he’d put down his groceries or whatever, offering me his hand, “Keanu. Keanu Reeves.” And I’d just act all casual, like I’d never heard of him before, and I’d say, “Great. Sounds great. Maybe I’ll stop by. Nice meeting you Keanu.”
But that didn’t happen. And after I finished banging on the doors I turned around and that lady was still standing there with me in the elevator staring at me. And I just looked at her for a second and then screamed, “What?”