Monday, August 9, 2010

Goodbye Patricia Neal

I see that Patricia Neal has passed on, and I did have a "brush with greatness" with her a number of years back. I was sitting at the breakfast counter one Saturday morning in my local Greek coffee shop and sat next to her, although at the time I didn't know it was her.

When she spoke to the counterman, I recognized her voice. She said how she had an appointment in the neighborhood and was early and was killing time. She was drinking a cup of coffee. I had bought a newspaper and when I left, I said, "Miss Neal, would you like this newspaper?" and she said, "Oh yes, my dear. Thank you."

Later on, I saw her again at the hairdresser. She had that luminous nature famous people have -- don't know what that is -- but it's a glow that makes them stand out from the crowd.

I remember once, having seen a Broadway play, I was walking toward 8th Avenue and (OK, this was a loooooong time ago) and a bunch of people were standing outside a stage door waiting for a star to come out. I realized that the street was empty and so it wouldn't be too long to wait. Then I realized the people were waiting for Katherine Hepburn and I thought this is probably my only chance to see her up close in person.

Sure enough, a few minutes later, she came out of the stage door, and it was like there was a halo around her, or a spotlight on her -- just this glow and even though I only saw her for 10 seconds or so, I'm glad I waited.

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