I’m Your Greatest Idol

INT. RESTAURANT — NIGHT

A YOUNG COUPLE enjoy a good meal at a fancy restaurant in New York. The year is 2009.

TAMSIN

This place is amazing!

PHIL

I know! Everybody says this is the real thing this year.

TAMSIN

You sure we can afford this?

PHIL

Don’t worry about that. Tonight’s a special night.

Someone clears his throat. Phil turns his head and finds DAVID BOWIE squatting by his side, grinning.

Bowie_1983_serious_moonlight
Hi, I’m DAVID BOWIE, and I am in no way connected to this sketch.

DAVID BOWIE

Sorry to bother you, but aren’t you Phil Collier?

Phil stares at David Bowie, nonplussed.

PHIL

Uh… yeah?

DAVID BOWIE

I knew it! Uh… look, you’ll hear this all the time, but… I’m your greatest idol. I follow your twitter and all… those old pics of me you post all the time… Great taste. Superior.

PHIL

Thank you! You’re–you’re very kind. David Bowie! I really didn’t–

Bowie smiles and raises his hands, apologetic.

DAVID BOWIE

Sorry… sorry… I’ll leave you two alone. Enjoy your dinner.

Bowie goes back to his table. Phil and Tamsin look at each other.

PHIL

Wow.

TAMSIN

Yeah…

They eat in silence. She looks up and smiles.

TAMSIN

What did you mean about tonight being special?

Phil smiles mischievously. Someone taps his arm. He turns around. Bowie is back.

DAVID BOWIE

Sorry to bother you again, but I thought, what the heck. Care for a selfie with me?

He waves his mobile and smiles, hopeful.

PHIL

Of course, of course. I  mean… sure, anything for an idol!

Bowie presses his face against Phil’s and takes the picture. He checks it came out all right, bows and leaves again.

PHIL

Send it to me, will ya? I’ll share it on Instagram!

Bowie turns and gives him a thumbs up before returning to his table.

Phil takes a deep breath.

PHIL

Anyway. Where were we?

TAMSIN

Special night?

PHIL

Right, right. Okay… phew…

Phil puts his hand in his jacket’s pocket and produces a ring box. Tamsin giggles nervously. He gets on his knees.

Bowie is back.

David_Bowie_-_TopPop_1974_01
Don’t get me wrong. I have a great sense of humour. Have you seen my short film Jazzin’ for Blue Jean?  I was channelling my inner Michael Caine.

DAVID BOWIE

I’m so sorry, but Iman over there insists on taking a selfie with you…

Phil gives him a look of disbelief.

PHIL

I’m sorry, but… we’re in the middle of something here, okay?

DAVID BOWIE

I know, I know. You’re absolutely right. Normally I would never do this, but… I mean, what are the odds of me bumping into you again? Right?

PHIL

Yeah, but… there are boundaries, okay? Like… lines one should not cross. Suppose that all my idols started stalking me and the like?

DAVID BOWIE

Stalking you? Oh no no, We come here all the time, it’s sheer chance you happened to be here as well. Look, it won’t take us more than a second to make the picture… i mean, come on, you took one with Bruce Springsteen last year, and you don’t even like him that much…

A WAITER arrives, a stern look on his face. He talks to Phil.

WAITER

Excuse me, sir, but is this Rock Star bothering you?

PHIL

Yes!

DAVID BOWIE

Hey, maybe you could take this picture for me! Iman! Iman! Come here, baby!

Bowie pushes his mobile into the waiter’s hands. Phil gets up and nods at Tamsin.

PHIL

Come on, let’s get out of here…

Phil and Tamsin head for the exit, followed by Bowie.

DAVID BOWIE

Oh, come on, don’t be like that! Just one picture!!!

The young couple leaves. Bowie returns to his table, crestfallen. IMAN squeezes his shoulder. He’s on the verge of tears.

DAVID BOWIE

It’s true what they say. Never meet your fans.

David_Bowie_(1967)
When they took this picture of me I was nobody’s idol yet. But it’s all right. I was pretty, wasn’t I?

NOTES:

 1 I wrote this sketch back in 2008 or 2009. I used to fantasize about being famous and asking Bowie to play himself here. He’d have been awesome.

Sad sigh. I miss Bowie. (Don’t we all?)

2 All David Bowie photographs are taken from Wikimedia, and therefore subject to creative commons licences or fallen into public dominion. The picture from the Serious Moonlight Tour Era (the peroxided Bowie) was taken in november 1983 by Jeffchat1, who uploaded it to wikimedia.  The black and white picture with the eyepatch was taken on the 15th of february 1974 during the recording of a TV show called TopPop for Dutch TV channel AVRO. Author unknown. The black and white picture of a very young Bowie with the fringe hair was taken in 1967 for an ad by the recording company London Records. Author unknown. The photograph of Mr. and Mrs Bowie was taken in 2009 at the premiere of his son Duncan Jones‘ film Moon, at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York. The photographer was David Shankbone.

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