A Detailed and Personal Breakdown of Every Famous Person I Have Ever Met

We all have one. A list of famous people we’ve spotted on the street or noticed feeling up the avocados in our local Tesco Metro. But shouldn’t they… I don’t know… have a designated feeler for that sort of thing?

It’s a question I often curiously ask people: Who’s the most famous person you’ve ever met?

I might as well tell you, my own list isn’t going to win any prizes. It’s a bit on the lean side and none too heavy on the old ‘international superstars’. If you’re looking to find the likes of Hugh Jackman or Dustin Hoffman on this list I’m sorry but you’re going to come away very disappointed.

Pierce Brosnan
Pierce is probably my most impressive spot. I know he’s Irish, which should elicit an: “Ah now, who hasn’t seen him knocking about the place? I’d be more impressed if you said you never saw him,” but Pierce was James Bond so my hands are tied.

I saw Pierce in Dun Laoghaire and he was really getting the star treatment as befits his status as Hollywood icon and national treasure. A man in an apron (a grocer?) was seeing Pierce and a mature lady (an esteemed relative?) across the street. Pierce looked slick, well dressed and a man at ease with himself. He had a very definite aura that said: I’m like you, only a bit more ‘glowy’ and famous.

Glen Hansard
Glen was my most recent spot. I was with friends outside a cafe, eating a goats cheese salad and feeling a frisson in the air that anything could happen. I wasn’t wrong. Glen walked past and my friend said matter-of-factly: “Oh look, there’s Glen. Isn’t he a bit of a ride?”
“Yes,” I said, “he’s got something about him alright. And he’s meant to be very nice in ‘real life’. He’s a man who looks happy with himself and his achievements. Not smug though. I like that.”

“No,” said another, more discerning friend, “no, he wouldn’t do it for me I’m afraid.”

So I concocted a story, hoping to change her mind: She’s heartbroken, so she goes to the Aran Islands to her grandfather’s cottage to heal. In a windswept landscape she writes poetry, wears woolly jumpers and looks fragile and beautiful. She sits on quite a lot of rocks, feeling like she will never love again. But wait, one stormy day she’s sitting on one of her rocks (her favourite one, it’s flat and there’s space for a coffee and her Sudoku book) and she sees a man fixing a boat on the beach, strong and ginger. It’s Glen. His beautiful hands are adroit and roughened, yet carefully trimmed nails reveal a fastidious, prideful man. He looks into her eyes acrosseth sand and shale with a passion that startles her. Instantly she knows she has found her soulmate. They make passionate love on the cold beach, rain whipping down as they cry out in a frenzy.

“No,” she says,” no, he still doesn’t do it for me.”

Johnny Vegas
I walked passed him on Baggot Street Lower. He was wearing a white t-shirt and was deep in conversation with a duo of consorts. I left him to it.

Jimmy Doyle from Fair City
This one is brilliant in its randomness. It’s a small auld world and no mistake. I saw Jimmy (real name David Mitchell) in Maryland’s Baltimore airport.

Is that? It’s not. Is it? Is it Jimmy? Could it be? Ah no, sure what are the odds. I’ll get a bit closer. Well jimmy me timbers, it IS Jimmy Doyle, skilled mechanic and member of the Doyle dynasty, son of patriarch Bela.

Of course I had to say something. I had to prove this happened, for myself more than anyone.
“Hi, I’m a big fan of the show. Can I get a photo?”

It’s the only time I EVER asked a celebrity for a photo.

Sure enough Jimmy (real name David Mitchell) obliged. I still have the picture. I eh, won’t post it though because it was at the end of my J1 and after discovering Philly Cheesesteaks and corndogs I had put on about two stone.

Keith Urban
If it came down to it in a court of law, by virtue of nationality and column inches, (dirty minds on ye!) Keith would probably be judged my best spot, which is a bit depressing because I have zero interest in country music and don’t find him sexually appealing in the least. He was very tanned and wore a black short sleeved shirt. Points were awarded for the sheen off his hair though. He was a sheeny little fecker.

At least my ‘spot’ area had a bit of glitz and glam to it though. I was outside The Standard Hotel in New York City, drinking a coffee and feeling brilliant. Keith was making his way to a black car, no doubt taking him to a pressing ‘Keith’ engagement.

One of the chaps from The Magic Numbers, Cathy Davey and Neil Hannon (all at once)
I once won a competition to be a reporter for Jack Daniel’s for a special gig they were putting on. The gig was a one-off performance of Vampire Weekend’s titular album so part of the prize was to come and watch one of the chaps from the Magic Numbers, Cathy Davey, Neil Hannon and Richie from Jape rehearse. They were all marvellously nice people, but after a couple of hours watching the rehearsal me and the friend I had brought with me were horribly, horribly bored (my fiance Alex has been playing in bands for years so such a thing holds no glamour for me, if anything it reminds me of wanting us to go away for the weekend but we can’t because he’s playing a gig to fifteen people in a pub in Tullamore).

We stayed as long as we could so we wouldn’t offend, (I’m sure they wouldn’t have cared a jot but even so) then finally when it all got too much tentatively butted in and said: “Thanks a million, we’re heading off now. Bye.”

I think that’s it. There might be more but I can’t think of any right now, which isn’t a great indictment on those that may have slipped my mind.

I wouldn’t say I’ve had a great run of it thus far but as they say, the night is still young.

2 Comments

  1. My meeting celebs stories are always sooooo ordinary.
    Feel free to use as a guest blog post hahaha. LAWL.

    AIDAN GILLEN
    Encounter 1 involved me, post Camden Crawl, making some sort of an excited moose noise and muttered “It’s Carcetti” as he bustled down George’s street with a bag full of bread and milk. Encounter 2 involved him spilling his tea over my Simon Le Bon-esque white blazer, he apologised to no end, bought me a coffee and I walked with him down to Abbey Street. I didn’t bring up the first encounter.

    DUNCAN STEWART
    I saw him walking down O’Connell Street and I blurted “Carbon monoxide is a silent killer” at him. The shame. The complete and utter shame.

    DEAN FROM FAIR CITY
    I was in Doyles… turned out my friend’s mam was in the “grown up part” of Doyles and she was hob knobbing with fair cities finest. She made us come down and take a picture with him. The memory and the look of discomfort on my face still haunts me.

    DAVID O DOHERTY
    It went like this: “Are you David O’ Doherty?”… “No. But I get that a lot”… 2 hours later as I leave the pub: “Hahaha, I actually am me”

    JIM CORR
    He sat beside me on the DART.

    NICKY WIRE
    I saw him buying his own CD in the old Tower Records. I left and was waiting for a friend outside and I gave him what I’m still worried might have been the wrong directions back to his hotel.

    LISA HANNIGAN
    My friend (the same friend in the Dean from Fair City scenario) had terrible hay fever at a gig. We went to the ambulance on the off chance that they would have zirtek (they didn’t) and bumped in to Lisa Hannigan. We did that awkward trying to pass each other dance.

    RUSSEL CROWE
    He dropped his water in Stephen’s Green and I picked it up for him. He said thanks. I made a weird noise when I realised it was him.

    RUSSEL BRAND
    He was actually really nice. Like a mad elf. I talked to him for about hour. It was around the time he was dating Katy Perry and all he did was talk about how lucky he was to have her and also about how he doesn’t understand why event caterers always give cheese on platters. We also talked about how feminine beauty isn’t something that can be defined by one thing or one ideal. One of my less dorky celeb stories.

    DANE BOWERS
    He was trying to get my attention in a night club when I was about 20/21. I was not interested in talking to him and he goes “You know I’m Dane Bowers?”, I said “You’re out of your mind” AND HE DIDN’T EVEN GET MY JOKE.

    DAMON ALBARN
    This one hurts. He bumped into me and didn’t apologise. I was like “That Damon Albarn looking f***er needs to get over himself”. When I got to work I realised Blur were playing in Kilmainham and that it WAS him and I’m sad ALL the time now because I didn’t say something to him.

    GERARD BUTLER
    Ran over my foot and gave me a massive bruise on my leg with his massive suitcase. He called me a dopey bitch.

    EDEL AND KEAVEY FROM B*WITCHERD
    The twins lived on my friends road when I was a kid. The day I met them was the BEST DAY OF MY LIFE EVER.

    DON CONROY
    I have the Owl drawing to prove it.

    Brief encounters also include Miley from Glenroe, Ardal O’ Hanlon (I was too scared to say hi), Cathy Davey, Colm Meany and Jo from S Club 7

  2. Cynthia

    August 11, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    Claire, that is just brilliant!! Some really top notch, impressive spots. And you just reminded me that I also spotted Colm Meaney one Christmas in Avoca. I was absolutely star struck! Ashamed to my boots that I forgot him!

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