Zero Minutes of Fame

Last summer an artist friend of mine and I bopped around New York City for a week.  My friend took a lot of selfies in front of famous landmarks as we trekked through the sprawling metropolis. Since I was her travel buddy, she included me in the snapshots. (I like to think I'm kind of a famous landmark in her life.) 

It was easy for her to get good pictures of both of us surrounded by New York City scenes: my friend has very long arms, like human selfie sticks. 

The hotel where we stayed was in the theatre district. One Saturday night, after gorging ourselves on street vendor food, we suddenly found ourselves walking in front of Broadway. The sidewalks were thronged with tourists and people dressed in costumes representing famous pop icons. There were legions of Marilyn Monroes, Minnie Mouses, Elvis Presleys, and Donald Ducks.

"Let's take a picture of us in front of Broadway," my friend said.

"Good idea," I said.

"Ready?" She held the camera at arm's length. "Smile."

"Wait," I said, fumbling in my purse for my makeup case. "Let me check my lipstick. I think I ate it all off with that gyros."

"Okay," my friend said. "I'll wait."

Before I could locate my lipstick, a voice called out to us."Hey, ladies. Want your picture taken with Elvis?"

"Elvis" was in his early 20's and about 5'2". His pink-cheeked, cherubic face sported a faint dusting of pimples. A black pompadour wig sat askew on his head as he strutted toward us, resplendent in a white zip-up polyester jumpsuit with an open collar and gold embroidery. Sunglasses, dirty white sneakers and an animal-print fanny pack completed his ensemble.

"No thanks," said my friend.

Elvis beamed a dazzling grin. "Come on. It'll impress people back home."

"No," my friend said. She snapped a quick photo of us, put her camera in her bag and gestured to me to follow her as she walked away.

"You're missing the chance of a lifetime!" Elvis said. His voice was loud and irritable.

 "Sorry," my friend called over her shoulder," but I was never really into Elvis."

Elvis stood on tiptoe and shouted back at her. "Well I was never into you either!"

I wish they'd gotten along a little better, at least until I had a chance to fix my lipstick.