I’m sorry, Matthew Lillard.

The Husband and I dove right back into unpacking as soon as we got home from Utah on Saturday. Unpacking is a bitch. Seriously, I’m never moving again. (So that kid that we may or may not have one day? It sleeps in a cabinet.) And I’m never buying anything ever again, either.

It was in one of the thousands of boxes that I found a long forgotten photo album. It was so forgotten, in fact, that I didn’t even think it had ever been used until I cracked it open and, surprise surprise, pictures!

There were pictures from our honeymoon in Hawaii, pictures of our first anniversary trip to Disney World, pictures of people we worked with years and years ago. And interspersed between the pictures were scraps. Mostly movie and event ticket stubs, but then I found this:

That’s right. Matthew Lillard’s autograph. Eat your heart out, bitches.

The year was 2002 (possibly 2003) and The Husband and I were living in sin on the beautiful coast of Monterey. I was a server in a hotel restaurant, both of us working for the same company we do today.

Matthew Lillard, his wife, and their newborn daughter were staying at the hotel to attend a wedding. I wouldn’t say I was a huge fan of his, but Scream? Scared the absolute shit out of me. Not kidding. That fear lingered for weeks. (Hey, I was fourteen.)

And I’ll always remember how his character snapped at the end of the movie and lays there crying and bleeding after having been shot.

So, as I watched him + fam exit the elevator and begin to approach the restaurant, I was not just a little excited. Unfortunately, they bypassed the restaurant for Starbucks. Fortunately, the restaurant was dead and I was able to stand there and make googley eyes at him for a while

And, holy hell, did they linger! I mean, the man was practically begging me to ask for his autograph.

Actually, the thought of approaching a celebrity, any celebrity, made me shake a bit in my shoes. No lie. But The Husband kept egging me on from across the lobby. “You’ll never do it,” he said, “you’re too chickenshit.”

Oh, really?

Finally, after taking that first step eight hundred times just to chicken out and turn around, I finally did it. I approached. I asked. I conquered.

And he was so nice. So “go with the flow.” Almost as if having someone ask for his autograph was just part of his normal everyday coffee routine. Setting down the creamer to reach for the pen and paper I held was such an easy fluid motion, it was obvious he’d done it many times before.

What I didn’t anticipate was how I’d feel afterward.

I felt guilty. Extremely. I had just interrupted a man and his family… getting coffee… on their vacation! I was scum. Worse. I was ashamed of myself and immediately regretted asking and have ever since.

That feeling of regret has stayed so strong, so persistant, that it has prevented me from ever approaching another celebrity. Even Tim McGraw (TIM MCGRAW!) who, just a year ago, stayed at the hotel with Faith and the kids during a trip to Disneyland. I had the chance, but Matthew Lillard ruined me for life. All I could do was stand to the side and ogle to my heart’s content while screaming “I LOVE YOU, TIM!” over and over in my head.

I realize that Matthew Lillard has absolutely no recollection of me. In his world, the only thing I amount to is a five second irritation that was immediately forgotten, but… I’ll always remember and I’ll always regret.

So, Matthew Lillard? If you’re reading? I’m really sorry.

And Tim McGraw owes you a favor.

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7 Responses to I’m sorry, Matthew Lillard.

  1. Angry Asian says:

    personally, my fave Matthew Lillard movie was Hackers.was Tim as gorgeous in person as he is on tv? faith too?

  2. Poindexter says:

    my hypothesis about being a celebrity is that interacting with fans is part of the job description. You weren't being annoying, you were just requesting a small memento of your meeting. AND, it's something you still have, and still remember. Had he requested your autograph, he would undoubtedly remember you too. So, no harm, no foul. If they say no, that's ok. I can say, I understand and thanks anyway.

  3. Gayle says:

    I've never seen a celebrity in person and I know I would be too chicken to ask for an autograph. Don't feel badly about asking. I think if someone is going to be a celebrity they must expect it.

  4. Angry Asian, he was even better. I didn't see Faith. Just Tim and the kids as they returned from the park. He is scrumptious.Poindexter, I agree. To an extent. But I think there's a time and place for everything. I think that just because a person chooses a career that puts him in the public's eye doesn't necessarily mean it's appropriate to interrupt a man and his wife and child while they're getting coffee. If it had been a more appropriate venue (an event, or signing, etc.) that'd be much different.Gayle, they probably do expect it. But imagine what it must feel like to be on vacation, getting coffee, and just waiting for someone to approach and interrupt you. Maybe I'm just so sensitive to it because I know how I feel about being interrupted or having my privacy disrupted and I'm nowhere near celebrity status.

  5. Teehee, you crack me up. But, um… who is Matthew Lillard? Wait! I will google him……….Oh, yes sceam. I remember him from scream. What about Faith, Stephanie? You didn't want her autograph? 😉

  6. Teeter says:

    Haha….Why would she want Faith's autograph?! She wants to take over the husband! ;-)Steph: I feel the same way. An event or signing is fair game. Family time is different. I don't know if I would have been able to ask, but I don't think you should feel too bad. What's nice is that you learned from yourself that you didn't like doing that to the man and you didn't do it the next time the opportunity came up. So many people would have ignored that and done it anyway.

  7. Alias Mother says:

    I don't know who he is. Like, no idea. I barely remember Scream. Do you hate me now?Also, you earned good karma points for your Tim McGraw restraint. I know it was painful, but it was the right thing to do.

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