For a long time, two things remained constant in my life; Christopher Meloni (Law&Order, Oz) and dry skin. Why did handing Christopher Meloni a gym towel 20 years ago, when I worked at a gym where he was a member, lead to a lifelong connection that he knows nothing about? That towel was the beginning of a twenty-year one-sided romance.
When I met Christopher at that gym, a million years ago, he wasn’t the Christopher Meloni that he is today. Back then he was just another hot struggling actor. He’d come in almost every day and he flirted with me each and every time.
You could cut the sexual tension with a knife. There were many events, coincidences and incidents over the years, that linked us together. I believe the most significant one came when I was traveling around Europe, after leaving Los Angeles.
My friends always stayed vigilant when it came to CM sightings and how they might fit into my life. I received an e-mail at my hotel in Krakow, Poland, from a friend who told me that CM was starring in the play, A View From The Bridge, in Dublin, Ireland. So close. Dublin, Ireland here I come!
When I arrived in Dublin, I immediately took a bus to the theater, where a jolly lolly woman in the box office said that the show was sold out. Are you f’in kidding me? I came all the way from Krakow! She suggested I get to the theater at seven o’clock for last minute cancellations. Done jolly lolly.
I couldn’t meet Detective Stabler wearing my torn and tattered sneakers. I looked like a bag lady. It had been a long way to Tipperary. I found a cheap Irish department store, filled with drunks, their shattered dreams and synthetic blends. I bought a pair of inexpensive high-heeled plastic and rubber puke brown boots. They weren’t comfortable either.
I returned to the theater at 6:29p and sat my tight and tired ass on the cold concrete steps. I took out my tacky boots from my sassy backpack and began the footwear switch, when out of the corner of my eye, the man, the myth, the legend, Christopher Meloni, was heading towards me.
My face turned crimson and my palms began to sweat. The side zipper snagged my ratty athletic sock, and my foot hung limp from the boot like a flacid cock. I lowered my head and pretended to read my David Sedaris book, Dress Your Family In Corduroy and Denim.
What was I supposed to do, say hello, while pulling on my boots? Yes, because that’s what sane people do. Maybe I should’ve said, “Towel?” and waited for a reaction. I felt him glance over at me but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t in a, ‘hey, who’s the hottie in the plastic boots’, kind of way. I wanted to scream, “I’m not a homeless person who likes theater!”
Christopher had his, ‘an actor prepares’, hat on and quickly disappeared into the theater. I kicked myself with my plastic boot for being such a pussy. I couldn’t let it end there so I decided to write him a note inviting him out for a drink after the show. Of course I’d explain our mutual connections so as not to scare him.
I ripped out a blank sheet of paper from the back of my book and started writing. The only thing that I can remember about the note was that I mentioned a friend of his, who was a friend of a friend of mine, who had died in 911. This was sure to endear myself to him.
When I walked into the theater, I handed my note to jolly lolly in the box office and asked her to give it to Mr. Meloni. She looked up at me, then down at the folded paper, and then back up at me. I knew that as soon as I walked away she’d read it, pee her pants, and pitch it in the trash. I wasn’t naive.
After an hour waiting in line, I got a ticket. My seat was in the very last row. The blokes sitting next to me informed me that I should thank their friend Rory whose seat I was sitting in. At the last minute, Rory had to fly to Croatia on business. Thank you, Rory and God Bless You.
Was I really going to wait by the stage door? I deluded myself into thinking that Christopher got my note. But what if he did get my note, and decided to leave through the back door? What if he didn’t get my note, and I saw him outside? Would I tell him about the note? What if he started running down the street? Would I run after him? That would be scary. For both of us.
It was the summer of taking chances. I waited outside the theater, and pretended to call someone on my cell phone. I didn’t want to look like a fan. What the hell was I doing? I immediately abandoned ship as soon as I came to my senses and put plastic boots to pavement and walked to the bus stop. The boots did nothing for my remaining bunion. If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times; nothing says old Jew like a bunion.
I continued looking over my shoulder to see if I could catch a glimpse of Christopher leaving the theater. As I passed hotel after hotel, I felt like a streetwalker on the job.
What if Christopher was expecting me? That teeny tiny glimmer of hope loomed large in my teeny tiny brain. I couldn’t live without knowing, so I hobbled back to the theater. As I approached, I saw only darkness.
I turned around, again, and limped back to the bus stop. I definitely looked like a hooker. I stopped into one of the hotels and tried to pick up a few Euros. Ireland isn’t cheap you know.