Clay Aiken

I suppose you could say I am a bit of a celebrity stalker.

A year ago I was getting out of cab on Fifth Avenue and as I was paying the driver, I heard the distinct sound of one of our greatest living actresses. When I turned around, I saw Meryl Streep walking by with with her daughter. Immediately, I threw some cash at the driver and followed Ms. Streep. She was on the phone talking. Her daughter was busy texting someone and no one else seemed to notice that the woman who won an Academy Award for Sophie’s Choice was in our midst. It was mind-blowing. Immediately, I took out my cell phone and pretended to talk into it so that I could continue following her but not look like I was following her. Then I had the brilliant idea to take her picture with my phone. So I deftly activated the camera and began blindly snapping photos of Ms. Streep. Horrible. I know. When all three of us arrived at Fourteenth Street, it dawned on me that I had turned into something of freak, following this poor woman and snapping unauthorized photos. So I put my phone in my back pocket and walked away. Later, I realized I’m no Annie Leibovitz because all the photos were of the sidewalk.

That December, my sister and her family visited from Alabama. As a Christmas gift, I took them to see Spamalot on Broadway after I heard they were big fans of the film, Monty Python and the Holy Grail. A friend offered us house seats with the added bonus of taking my family backstage. Clay Aiken, the runner-up to American Idol was starring in the Spamalot at the time. He had just come out as gay and so my lunatic brain had the crazy idea to wrap my book, Advocate Guide to Gay Men’s Health and Wellness and if I was lucky enough to run into Clay, that I would offer it to him as a gift.

The show was spectacular. The kids and my sister and brother-in-law loved it and directly after the curtain went down, we were escorted backstage for a guided tour. The kids were in awe, seeing the inner workings of a stage show. Just as we were about to exit, I heard screams coming from the stage door, and lo and behold, there he was – Clay Aiken. I gasped but immediately went into action. I walked casually up to Clay and in a calm voice said, “Mr. Aiken, I think you’re great. Merry Christmas.” With that I handed him my gift wrapped book. He accepted and thanked me.

Cut to yesterday, when my good friend Larry Flick, host of the Sirius radio show, Morning Jolt, emailed me early in the morning to brag that he was going to interview Clay Aiken. Larry knows I am a stalker, so I told him my Clay Aiken story. Of course, he had a good laugh on my behalf and so I hung on him.

That afternoon, Larry paid me a visit in my office. He told me all about his interview with Clay Aiken and what a delight he was. Then he told me that he had a surprise for me. “Close your eyes,” he said. I did; and when I opened them, this is what I saw:

It's signed to Dr. Frank

Larry said he asked Clay if he remembered receiving a book from a crazy doctor. Clay did not recall being assaulted by me back stage but he did say that he saves every gift he receives, and that he would check when he got home.

Imagine that?

In any case now Clay and I have exchanged autographs copies of our work.

Alert the geek squad. I need counseling.

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16 Comments

  1. claniac24
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    You’re not a stalker…just a wonderful guy who appreciates the extraordinary talent of Clay Aiken. Enjoy “Tried and True”. It’s Clay’s best work to date.

  2. katy
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    Cool story. Clay is a very nice man and can really sing, but what people don’t know about him, is that he has a wonderful comedic talent!

  3. MolliLu
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    He is one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet and rarely forgets a name or meeting someone. Enjoy the CD, the best ever.

  4. rck
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

    Aw great story. Loved him in Spamalot. LOVE LOVE this CD..enjoy!

  5. Llana
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

    how cool is that?

  6. Becky
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for such a wonderful story! Clay is a classy guy!! oh and that CD a true timeless masterpiece!!!

  7. Dawn
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

    You’re soooo HOT, how could Clay ever forget meeting you.

  8. Posted June 5, 2010 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

    Great story about Clay! Thanks for sharing it.
    Please, now tell us how you like the CD.

  9. ari
    Posted June 6, 2010 at 12:55 am | Permalink

    OMG… love this story! love clay.. I am so jealous! haha

  10. Sue
    Posted June 6, 2010 at 1:45 am | Permalink

    Cute story! I guess I didn’t care much, though, for your comment about alerting the geek squad and needing counselling. Because you and Clay have exchanged “work?” Clay is the furthest thing from a geek you’ll probably ever meet. He’s funny, caring, intelligent, and REAL. But you do have one excellent CD in your possession now!!! Enjoy!

  11. Mary
    Posted June 6, 2010 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    Great story! Clay is totally awesome! Love him, he’s so talented,funny,smart and handsome!And HOT!! :)))
    Enjoy the CD! It’s amazing!!!
    Thanks for sharing your story!

  12. Susan
    Posted June 7, 2010 at 12:54 am | Permalink

    Funny stories about your celebrity “stalking.” Please tell your friend,Larry Flick,that Clay Aiken interview was the best Clay’s ever given anywhere – the most candid and the most enlightening. Those of us who are Clay fans really want to think him for having him on. I loved Larry’s genuine interest, courtesy, sensitivity, respect, humor, and the fact he did his homework!

  13. Larry Flick
    Posted June 7, 2010 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    How cute are you! I love that you’re not a typically jaded New Yorker who refuses to be excited by things like movie stars and pop stars. You’re a queen after my own heart!

  14. Posted June 8, 2010 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    very thanks beautiful

  15. daisy
    Posted June 9, 2010 at 5:11 am | Permalink

    At least you have the CD. It’s not in any stores around me, and I guess in other areas too. Crazy how some stores just won’t carry his music, I had trouble finding his last christmas CD too.

  16. spinellimd
    Posted June 9, 2010 at 10:43 am | Permalink

    Can you order it on amazon.com?


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