Fame is a bee
It has a song –
It has a sting –
Ah, too, it has a wing.

— Emily Dickinson

Atlanta may not have a lot of celebs to spot (Andre 3000 still owns a house in Grant Park, but he doesn’t live there; Elton John may or may not still own a penthouse in Buckhead; Jane Fonda is somewhere in the neighborhood, although I’ve also heard that she sold that house and moved to another nieghborhood nearby; Bobby Brown and Whitney Houston still have a house in country club enclave in the metro area, I think; Evander Holyfield has a big ass spread near Fayetteville), throw a stone and you’ll hit a CNN or Weather Channel producer who will usually score you a little gossip. CNN porn we sometimes call it. CNN Correspondent Miles O’Brien, for instance, is said to be a bit of a condescending asshole but smart, smart, smart. Weatherman anchor Jim Cantore, by contrast, is said to be an all around nice guy. I keep peppering the CNN producers about Anderson Cooper (swoon, swoon). I know full well which team he bats for, but he’s still the bee’s knees to me.

In my neighborhood coffee shop last year who should walk in but former CNN anchor Daryn Kagen. It wasn’t terribly long after she had left the network, and there were some rumors going around about how Rush Limbaugh (her ex) had really done her wrong and so had CNN. Unconfirmed rumors, of course, but that was the float. At any rate, Daryn strolls into the coffee shop (San Francisco Coffee in Virginia Highlands) along with some guy. It was clearly a working relationship. They fired up their laptops, and spread out whatever it was they were working on. I couldn’t stop peeking over in that direction. And although I tried to be subtle about it, I’m sure I’m fooling myself. I knew that Daryn was schedule to be the star speaker at a women’s conference held downtown the following week, and I was very busy wondering if that is what she was working on that day. And if not that, then what? Was she writing a book? Was that guy her ghost writer or editor? Like it’s any of my business! Strangely fascinated, I kept telling myself to paste my eyeballs to my newspaper and quit being an idiot, but my brain had committed itself to snooping. Finally, I let it go and left.

Walking home I tried to sort things out. My MO is either indifference or irritation with the deference paid to the rich and famous. I’ve never wanted to be on Oprah, even though I know that could do wonders for my coaching business. Nothing against Oprah, but that’s simply not what I’m after. Quite a comeuppance to find that I was not as immune to the charged molecules of fame as I thought. Oh, how the self-proclaimed mighty fall… which is why I cannot end this without blurting my other “big” brush with fame that happened years ago when I found myself dancing alongside Michael Stipe at a club in Athens, Georgia.

Melissa, 38, Atlanta