I first met Jon Hamm in an elevator a couple/few years ago at LA Center Studios. We were both working there at the time. I at ReelzChannel (RIP), and he at a little show called Mad Men. A show that - at the time - I had never watched an episode of.
So there we were, just he and I. In an elevator. It sounded something like this:
Ok no it didn't. We were going up, not down. Here's what it really sounded like:
Me: Hi. (I'm guessing I started the convo, but I can't be sure.)
JH: Hi. Do you wanna go to the movies in a few years? (Of course he didn't say this, but I'm foreshadowing!) In reality, we made small talk and got to talking about what shows we were working on. I said Reelzchannel. He said Mad Men. (He was also wearing a suit.)
Me: Oh my gosh! The lead of that show is from St Louis and so am I! (As you can imagine I was excited to share this revelation...which made his reaction all the better.)
JH: (extending his hand) Hi, I'm Jon...Nice to meet you.
(Elevator doors open. It's his floor. What do I do??!!)
Me: (leaning my head/upper body out of the elevator yelling after him) Congrats on all your awards!!
I went home that night, immediately queued every single Mad Men episode I could get my hands on and caught up on the series in less than a week. That's not an exaggeration. I owed it to my fellow St. Louisan!!
I feel like I saw him another time between then and this summer. I feel like he had long hair and scruff. But I can't immediately remember where or when that was. So I guess nothing dramatic happened.
THEN. A couple/few weeks ago, I ventured over to a restaurant around the corner from my house. It's called Home. My house and the restaurant, coincidentally. This time we weren't alone. But if we were it would have probably sounded something like this:
I'm being dramatic. But you get the picture. I was with a group of friends. He was with his lady of like 10 years. (You know, the cute endearing one from Notes From the Underbelly? She also played one of Jack Bauer's cohorts on 24.) So there was her, and presumably their dog, and a trio of young girls I pegged as sisters or nieces or something...Long story short the only exchange that day may have been a glance.
So TODAY. I've been wanting to see Inception, but with my work schedule, fitting in movies can be difficult. I've only got a certain amount of free time. I was going to see it yesterday, but then I hung out with friends instead, so I pushed it off to today. I went to brunch and then hemmed and hawed about it. Did I really wanna see it? Yes I did my neighbor said. So I went. It was a 1:30 on a Tuesday. Movies are only $6.50 @ 1:30 on a Tuesday. I was stoked. That's less than half what I usually pay to see a movie in LA.
Ok, so I walk into the theater. It's dim in there. I prefer to sit toward the back, exactly in the middle. So that's the general direction I was heading. There was a row with ample leg room. (This particular theater removed rows of seating to provide that ample leg room and I thank them for that.) There was a gentleman sitting on the aisle. Then there were 3 empty seats. And then there was another gentleman. It just so happened that the middle empty seat was dead center. Divine!! Here's what it looked like:
back of theater
- - x - x - x | | - - -
(lots of seats)
front of theater
I'm the middle x.
The previews play. A preview for The Kids Are All Right. I saw it. I loved it. And I love this preview. I love Mark Ruffalo. I wanna clap at the end of the preview. Is that weird? I didn't clap. A couple more previews. I notice the guy between me and the aisle has checked his phone. I hope he's not one of THOSE I say to myself. But he puts the phone away. Then out of the corner of my eye, I realize he eats his popcorn out of the bag, like without getting his hands dirty. I quit paying attention to him. The movie is about to start and everyone has said, "Do not look away for a second!" "You have to watch every moment!"
Sometimes I get ancy in a movie and will adjust my position. I did that a few times. Stretched my legs out a few times.
(Sidenote: I'm REALLY all of the sudden paranoid about a phenomenon I've been told about called "secretary spread." Supposedly it's what happens to butts if you sit too long. Oh dear GOD in my night job do I sit a lot. So much that I'm seriously considering getting an elliptical in here. I don't want anything spreading. Ever.)
So back to the movie. I remember two parts where laughing happened. I won't spoil them here, but it was group laughing which I enjoy...you know, when the humorous moments are subtle, but everyone gets it.
Ok the movie's over. I hop up pretty immediately and follow the guy between me and the aisle out of the theater. We hit the sunlit area of the concession stand, and as he's putting on his sunglasses and confused about which way the men's restroom is, I see his face. It's Jon Hamm. The man I just fawned over Sunday night whilst watching his attempts to smooth talk a lady out of the cab and up the stairs to her door.
It wasn't only my top spinning, it was my HEAD spinning as I ducked into the ladies. I couldn't pee fast enough. I had to get out of there. I had to tell someone. EVERYONE. (Not everyone THERE mind you, everyone I know...duh!) Maybe we would come out of the bathrooms at the same time. What would happen then? I don't get nervous around celebrities! Why was this so exciting?? Why had I...How had I not noticed?? Does this movie induce dream states? If so, wouldn't it be ZB and not JH? I hope he doesn't think I only sat there because he was sitting there. Why is that lady looking at me like I didn't wash my hands? I JUST washed my hands! (And you think the things I say OUT LOUD sound like a scattered mess. Try being inside my head!)
Naturally, I had walked to the theater, so when I came out and didn't see JH anywhere, I went on my Mary way and booked it up the hill to mi casa so that I could burst into my neighbor's apt to tell her that "OMG I just saw a movie with Jon Hamm!" To which she replied, "See? See? You were supposed to go today!"
So the next time I see him, which, don't worry, won't be out in front of his house...I plan to ever so subtley hum this song:
I think he'll get it.
PS So I came into work and told my boss today's story. My boss knows Jon Hamm. I knew this already. My boss was like: "Why didn't you talk to him? I'm your connection. Just mention me." Then he asked, "Are you blogging about this? You should blog about this." And a little voice inside my head yelped, "Please don't encourage her and this behavior!" Just kidding. It's fun. Living in LA is fun. Living in Jon Hamm's neighborhood? It's just the icing.