I was at the local Costco food court last week having the $1.50 bargain lunch, when an older fellow sat and shared the table with me. We were casually commenting on the crowds and got to the point of “casual guy introductions”.
The “casual guy introduction” consists of exchanging first names followed by answering the standard inquiry: “So, what do you do for a living?”
Al said he was in the ice-cream business. I’m thinking maybe a manager at a 31-Flavors shop but he elaborated that he started making ice-cream in 1939. He is the founder and owner of Treat Ice Cream in downtown San Jose. He asked me if I’ve ever heard of it.
Of course, anyone who’s lived in the area more than a few years knows that Treat’s Ice Cream is the best but hard to find because it’s only available at select local markets.
Al is still running the company at 92 years old!
Then there was the time I was helping a friend clean up a vacant house he owned near Santa Cruz, Calif when a watchful neighbor wandered over to check on who was at the property.
Again we did the “guy introductions” and discovered that Robert ran a sports shop business in Calif and also had outlets in Hawaii.
Since we’ve been to Hawaii several times, I asked the name of the shops and discovered that my friend owns the house next door to Robert Wintner aka: the famous “Snorkle Bob”!
You CANNOT turn on the TV or radio in Hawaii and not know “Snorkle Bob”. I even called Claudette and Bob was kind enough to say “Hi”.
Now, while it’s not unusual, for kids to recognize me “out of context” at the local Costco or McDonalds, it is extremely unusual for their parents to do so.
The most recent was when a guy at McDonalds in the next booth asked if I was the “Mr. Homework” his daughter talks about at home. She had evidentially pointed me out the last time she saw me there.
Overheard, a fellow sitting at a table nearby turns and says: “Hi, Mr. Homework! My boys told me all about you!”
While I’m certainly not a "minor" celebrity like Al or Bob, I’ll settle for all the fame and fortune that comes with being a "micro" celebrity.
…I’ll have to practice signing my autograph!