Part 3: Famous people
In a densely populated city, or in a village of the world like Oslo, you’re bound to meet someone famous. A city is like a desert where survival is in-between those locations, those oases, where you’ll either eat, sleep, socialize or shop. Any means of public transporation is only a shortening of the desert wanderings, those in-betweens. Yet, as an outsider welcomed in, one learns to appreciate these transitionary dwellings, like the tram (a famous attraction in itself), the tube and also – yet not romantically so – the buses. Why? Because the transit is only an illusion, the wandering masses around you with their destinations locked into their future-to-be-present awareness live only right here and right now. And succumbed in the fixation of the mind, people reveal their human tendencies, locked as they are in a state of non-existence.
If you are like me – a completely, bonified, red-necked average citizen – you are probably not dining with celebrities or wooing sexy models. Chances are that you mostly shrug about the last doings of him or her. Still, when encountering a famous star, a well-know writer or anything of the sort, you wake up from your reality and into that glamorous but treacherous world of wonder.
And you are bound to meet them, wether you like it or not.
One day I was waiting for a tram to take me up to my brother and mother’s place where I’d eat breakfast and catch the Formula One Race live on TV, when the tram in the opposite direction came rolling by as it does. It was one of the old trams, those Oslo city councel hasn’t had the financial means to do anything about yet, those homeless people favour for shelter, those I – at the time – would probably never put my foot into. I glanced, as I usually do when having a cigarette waiting for something, at the people sitting in the tram, my eyes going from the front (to my left) to the back of it. Most people will at all cost avoid your piercing stare, and probably you do this yourself too, while other times the light inside the tram or the one outside throws a blinding reflection. This was not the case, however, and I mused over the general entertainment provided by these people as they shuffled about in that wagon full of folks.
It had let in and out travelling desert-crossers, and begun to commence its ongoing journey towards the centre of Oslo, the Cathedral. While this was happening my glance caught the eyes of a young, afro-american in the backseat, his eyes meeting mine. There was no doubt about it. It was 2pac.
Ten minutes later my tram came, I got on it and decided to memorize the time and location in case of inquiries: It was in the [ – – Blacked Out – – ] Street, one Sunday at 12:21 p.m.
Later on, this was outside Fafo where I work November the 3rd 04 at around 10 am, I had just fast-read the newspaper in the cold while trying hard to enjoy my morning cigarette, when the face of Sean Penn suddenly shone out to me. He was riding the garbage truck, right there on the back of it, seemingly tied up in dirty work. I didn’t bother to say ‘Hi’, ’cause there was numerous tasks waiting for me in the office.
I would also like to add that I’ve met famous people and government officials without having a clue, but this is just do to my not-having-a-TV policy. Take my mother’s building, for instance. How was I supposed to know that the she-male on the first floor was some national pop icon? Listening to the radio puts all the wrong faces on the named voices. But after a while, as is the growing accustomed syndrome, you just shrug, and move on. You should also check out: