an almost love story

an almost love story // movita beaucoup

The curtain rises in Toronto, during the late 1990‘s. It was a strange and wonderful time. Scientists were cloning sheep and plaid flannel was a socially accepted fashion norm. Microsoft was king, and Jennifer Aniston’s hair was its queen. Downtown Toronto was my home.

Each fall, Toronto hosts The Toronto Film Festival (TIFF). If you’re a Torontonian, you probably fall into one of two categories: TIFF fan or TIFF non-fan. You see, real life has to go on during TIFF, but without a management team, it can be challenging. Celebrities are lurchin’ all over the place. Celebrity stalkers roam freely and without shame. The sidewalks are patrolled by security teams and PR people. Photographers and reporters stake out alleyways and back door entrances. Sections of sidewalk are partitioned by velvet ropes and red carpeting, and exclusive boutiques are shut down so celebrities like Tom Cruise can shop privately, with no risk of inhaling your poverty-scented breath.

an almost love story // movita beaucoup

Much of the celebrity action at TIFF takes place in the Bloor-Yorkville area of the city. This is because the streets in that part of town are paved with gold, and the waitstaff at restaurants will chew your meat for you, should you so desire. It is home to posh shops, glamorous salons, and a lot of botox. And it is in that area of the city that I met Gérard Depardieu.

The mind has a way of blocking the details of unfortunate events. I don’t know where I was going on that crisp September day, but I do know I was going fast. Real fast. Weaving in and out of human traffic, striding past double wide strollers and their golden retriever attendants, gliding between pockets of the elderly. I would not be slowed by mile-long TIFF ticket lines or impenetrable walls of the celebrity-crazed. No, I thought: I will not be slowed today.

infographic

I probably should have noticed the red carpet situated at the entrance of the hoity-toity shop. And I probably should have noticed the foam railings and celebrity stalkers amassed in the area. But I didn’t. I didn’t notice Team Gérard making its way across the sidewalk, and I didn’t notice my body slipping between two of Gérard’s people like thread through the eye of a needle.

I do remember the moment my body slammed into Gérard’s. I remember the thud the front of my body made as it slammed squarely into the side of his. The dull, heavy thump that bodies make when they hit one another at speed. My sternum bore the brunt of the blow. I remember bouncing backwards – my feet left the ground entirely – and I remember that his body was completely unaffected by the impact mine made upon his. I remember the yelp that escaped my mouth, stunned for a moment, as I staggered in reverse. Gérard looked down, surprised to see me there. He began to say something, but a man slid between us, pushing me back. I tried to apologize, but another man with outstretched arms blocked my approach. Gérard’s team hurried him forward to his awaiting vehicle, but not before he looked back at me. Our eyes locked for a moment. It was as if the world stopped turning for an instant. It was quiet and still. There was a… what was it? Tenderness in his gaze?

And I thought: did I go to high school with that dude?

an almost love story // movita beaucoup

When I saw Gérard’s photo in the paper the next day (after his film premiere), I realized that no, I did not go to high school with that dude. That I had, in fact, crashed into one of France’s highest paid, most recognizable actors. And that Gérard Depardieu had touched my boobs whether he wanted to or not.

All in all, TIFF was pretty good that year.

 

25 Responses to an almost love story

  1. Sharon Graves February 13, 2014 at 8:07 pm #

    I love that you included the pigeons in the key. Possible they were at your high school?

    • movita beaucoup February 14, 2014 at 8:12 am #

      I’m not sure, Sharon. One of the pigeons DID look familiar…

  2. Allison (Spontaneous Tomato) February 13, 2014 at 8:59 pm #

    I love the story, and the very professional, precise graphic! (And I’m sure I’d love that frosting, too—chocolate usually gets even better when you combine it with peanut butter.)

    Santa Barbara, where I live, has a crazy, star-studded, shutting-down-the-main-street type of annual film festival, too, and I basically just avoid the whole downtown for the entire festival if possible. Although, other than the sternum pain, you’ve made me think that maybe I should check it out next year, just to see whose body my body might bump into…

    • movita beaucoup February 15, 2014 at 8:37 am #

      You really should start using that film festival to your advantage. In fact, you could carry some fancy treats with you to lure the stars toward you… and then take a run at ’em.

  3. Maureen | Orgasmic Chef February 13, 2014 at 10:32 pm #

    OMG your boobage was depardieud. I’m filled with envy. Isn’t he a high paid Russian actor now since he left France rather than give them 98% of his earnings in taxes?

    He likes sweets – maybe if you’d been carrying this cake your entire life would be different. Something to ponder.

    • movita beaucoup February 14, 2014 at 8:13 am #

      This is a good point, Maureen. Obviously, my boobs weren’t enough for Gérard. But this frosting? We’d be sipping wine in OUR vineyard had he tasted it…

  4. Cheri February 14, 2014 at 12:23 am #

    I did go to high school with you and it was awesome. Or something. I don’t remember ever running into you. G.D. is massive and you are tiny, this made a funny picture in my head, much assisted by the graphic graphic. Thanks again.

    • movita beaucoup February 15, 2014 at 8:32 am #

      Cheri, our high school years were magical. I’d happily run into you at full speed anytime…

  5. Molly February 15, 2014 at 3:54 pm #

    Ha! This is an indie rom com just waiting for an agent and that graphic is such icing on the tale! Also, thank you for sharing. I now feel slightly less embarrassed about the time I violently tripped over Mikhail Baryshnikov in an NYC lobby. Where many young women before me must have caught his eye due to their grace and poise, I took a rather unconventional route.

    • movita beaucoup February 17, 2014 at 10:08 am #

      I bet Mikhail found your take on grace very refreshing. I mean, how many white swans does a guy need to date?

  6. gottagetbaked February 15, 2014 at 7:04 pm #

    Movita, it was worth the wait. This story, the magic of your writing, the hilarity and wit of your voice, all of it, was worth the wait. Plus, I’m in love with the map and the legend you created. Hoity toity shop, awesome. You may not have spoken to each other but I know that you and Gerard will forever have a bond. I mean, the man touched your boobs, for gawd’s sake. As for this cake – gimme gimme gimme! Plus, you and I are soul mates because I just posted chocolate peanut butter frosting too. It’s the best stuff evaaaaah!

  7. Willow @Will Cook For Friends February 16, 2014 at 11:56 am #

    Best. Story. Ever. I can’t believe I voted for the passing gas story over this. If you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go read it again. And again. Because it is fantastic.

  8. consuelohoneyandfigs February 17, 2014 at 11:44 am #

    Hahaha you’re so funny! Your post cracked me up, I love your writting style :”) And your blog too! It is so pretty and your recipes are delish. Yay, so glad you stopped by my blog so I could discover yours!
    This cake looks amazing. Chocolate + peanut butter >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

  9. Amy February 17, 2014 at 11:56 am #

    Haha, you’re such a good storyteller, Movita. I particularly like your diagram…very professionally done. I can’t believe Gerard’s people treated you with such disdain when it was obviously an oversight on their part to have left such a void in their protective cover! Shame on them! Haha. And this cake…oh my. You had me at “chocolate peanut butter”…

  10. emma February 17, 2014 at 2:04 pm #

    I also remember there being a Condom Shack somewhere near Bloor… this couldn’t have been the hoity-toity shop he was being rushed out of at top speed, could it?

    • movita beaucoup February 19, 2014 at 7:57 am #

      No, Emma. NO.

  11. Dana Staves February 17, 2014 at 8:48 pm #

    Okay, three things: 1) I haven’t told you this, but I meant to write it on your Facebook a few weeks back and because I intended it, I thought I had done it, but I didn’t. And this is it: your site redesign looks AWESOME! 2) This story was hilarious, and I want to eat that frosting for breakfast. 3) I accidentally ran smack into Lil’ Bow Wow’s bodyguard at church camp in Daytona Beach when I was a teenager. Ramming into another human being is so shocking.

    • movita beaucoup February 19, 2014 at 7:56 am #

      Wait, wait, WAIT. Why was Lil’ Bow Wow’s bodyguard at church camp? And was Lil’ Bow Wow there? I’m gunna need some answers…

      • Dana Staves February 19, 2014 at 11:19 am #

        Haha! Church camp for us was at Daytona Beach, and Lil’ Bow Wow was performing at the venue across the street, so he was staying at our hotel. Every time he walked through the lobby, the 6th and 7th grade girls went NUTS over him, and I was watching this one day (while walking) and slammed right into his bodyguard. He was very nice about it and said, “Excuse me,” and then kept going. But dude was solid – it was like walking into a wall.

  12. tworedbowls February 20, 2014 at 1:12 am #

    I literally laughed out loud when I read this the first time (and then I forgot to comment.) So I’m almost certain that I’m similarly extraordinarily celebrity blind, or else I’m the only one in New York to never, ever have had a celebrity encounter even after many months of residing here. Either way, I just really hope my boobs run into a famous person one day and I can then post a graphic and an excellent recipe for frosting about it in imitation of your greatness. New goal.

  13. Renee February 22, 2014 at 9:14 pm #

    Oh my good lord. No words!!!

  14. Stacy February 27, 2014 at 9:12 am #

    Your diagram made me spit out a shower of potato chips in a fit of deep belly laughter so with this story you have simultaneously saved me calories as well as exercised my abdominal muscles. Merci, mon amie. Then you post a divine cake recipe. I am trying to calculate if it all evens out. Math is not my strong suit so let’s just say it does.

  15. Stephbo February 22, 2017 at 6:14 pm #

    I love the diagram. Totally puts it into context for me.

    There’s always something filming in my area (Atlanta), and my hubby and I are always surprised that we never ever see celebrities. But then again, celebrities aren’t likely to frequent the cheap places that we do.

    • movita beaucoup February 23, 2017 at 7:23 am #

      What about celebrities involved with scandals? Maybe some of those people might hit up your favourite spots? Fingers crossed for a pants-down scandal that swings in your favour…

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