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Straight from the boy who brings the bread basket at the Hard Rock Cafe!!
Los Angeles. City of Angels. Because that's what "Angeles" means-Angels. If there's one thing you can count on in this crazy town, besides earthquakes and Botox, it's stars.
That's right, the place is lousy with 'em. And I'm here to get all the dope on everyone I possibly can, because I'm a reporter for HW, and that's my job, dammit.
Now there's the usual way to can the scoop: interviews, press kits, eavesdropping with state-of-the-art technology. That last bit makes me sick-it's not professional. And it'll drain you dry, and for what? Some chick named Verna Holliday bedding down with Governor Terminator on November 30, 2005 in the guest room Arnold likes to call "the Governor's Suite of Extra Amazing Sex." Who doesn't know that?
Me, I like mingling with the people, the ordinary Janes and Joes of La-La Land. I met up with just such a Joe at the Hard Rock Cafe, restaurant to the stars, recently snatched up by a wealthy dude for close to a billion bills. That makes it a hotter property than ever.
This Joe's a breadbasket and water boy, and if you keep your eyes peeled on a guy like that longer than five minutes in a jumpin' joint like the Rock, you're bound to run into a story-if it doesn't mow you down first.
Joe-and I call him Joe, because that's what it says on his name tag-he's got lots of tables to hit. First there's the bread, then there's the water. And no one ever has enough bread, do they? It's always, "Joe, get me more bread," and "Get us extra of the cheesy-crunchy bread, willya Joe?" And the water has to have lemon or lime slices in it, or slices brought in their own little bowl, like everyone's the King and Queen of Sheba.
Not me, though. I just sit quiet at my table and disappear, see, so I can keep an eye out with no one paying notice. That's when I catch sight of him at table 23. That's right, it's Brad Pitt, and he's got a little party goin' on. I can't tell what's up at first, only that there are two fellas sitting there with him, and everyone's laughing it up big time.
Joe knows the routine, and after awhile he shows up at my table. "So lady, I take it you're not going to order anything," he says.
"Yeah, Joe, that's right. I'm not here for the food-I'm here for the dirt."
"The dirt?" asks Joe, playing dumb.
"I need the dirt on Brad Pitt, Joe. Table 23, throwin' down shots likes it's closing time."
"Well, if you call sipping cranberry juice 'throwin' down shots.' We're still serving breakfast, you know."
"Joe, don't tell me he's sipping juice-this is the Hard Rock!"
"Yeah," says Joe, "and this is breakfast at the Hard Rock. Now you want to order something this time or not?"
"Sling me some hash about Brad-baby over there, Joe. What've you got on him?"
"Well, um, he's here with some friends, and they're having a good time. Except . . ."
"What is it Joe?!! You can't hold out me."
Joe says, "Well he's just got a little headache is all, so I got him some aspirin."
"So that's what you call it, huh Joe? 'Aspirin?'"
"Well, yeah, that's what everyone calls it. Cause he's got a headache. I suppose you want a water refill, right lady?"
"Sure Joe, I'm pretty darn thirsty. Thirsty for more! C'mon, Joe, I've been waiting all week for a scoop. My readers expect me to come through, and I can't let 'em down!"
"Uh, right. Okay. Well, he's got a headache. He's drinking juice, and, um, well I heard him say something about seeing the dentist later."
"Joe, you're kidding! What else?"
"Nothing else. He's just going to the dentist, like we all do. Don't you ever go to the dentist?"
"Sure, Joe, but right after breakfast? Something's going on here, and it ain't a clean and floss."
"Well, whatever it is, I gotta get back to work."
Just then, the manager stopped by my table. They do that pretty often, you know. They can smell a reporter a mile away.
"Lady, I think you'd better pack it up for now. You've been asking for this table for a week, but you never order anything. We've got to free it up for some paying customers."
"No problem, honey," I say in my sweetest purr. "Joe gave me what I want."
Yep, Brad Pitt, juiced and popping pills like there's no tomorrow-and going to the dentist after breakfast, not before. It doesn't get much sleazier than that.
But I'm not here to sweeten the story, just report it. Because that's my job, dammit.
© 2007 Kate Heidel
Kate Heidel is a freelance writer living in Minneapolis. Her work includes humor essays and poetry, genres so incompatible that Kate's resulting inner turmoil can only be soothed by frequent shopping trips to Designer Shoe Warehouse.
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