Friday, March 24, 2006

in honor of the Jazz retiring #32

a little glimpse into my past . . . growing up I was a tom-boy. I loved sports and made several attempts to be good at them but never succeeded. What I was successful at was being a ridiculously overboard Jazz fanatic. In high school I watched almost every Jazz game, I camped out at the Delta Center for playoff tickets and plastered my bedroom in Jazz paraphanelia. Like I said - obsessed.
So one day in 1994, the summer between my freshman and sophomore years in college, when I was driving to a concert (either Duran Duran or Van Halen, or maybe it was the Steve Miller Band) at Wolf Mountain (predecessor to the Canyons) and I saw Karl Malone's semi parked in the Hardee's parking lot I insisted my friend pull over so I could meet him. She pulled out her camera and the moment was captured:

Please notice that his legs appear to be smaller than mine because at that time in my life, despite the fact that I was super thin and lean, I wore the biggest clothes I could find. I'm sure you must be enjoying the flannel shirt with the sleeves cut off - did I mention it was 1994?

It gets better. Fast forward to 1996. I was a senior at the University of Utah. I went to school in the morning and worked for a law office in the Judge Building from noon to five. The significance of the Judge Building is that it also housed the Judge Cafe - a favorite dining spot of my hero Karl Malone. When I realized he frequented the place I made it a point to bring my photo into the office . . . just in case. One day it happened. I saw his truck parked outside (yes, I was a marginal stalker), by going up the back stairs rather than using the elevator I could peer into the back of the Judge Cafe where he usually sat. Sure enough, there he was. I ran the 8 flights to the office, grabbed the photo and got some words of encouragement from other staff members to be bold. By the time I got back downstairs he wasn't in the restaurant anymore. I ran outside and he and Gregg Ostertag were just about to get in Karl's truck. I timidly approached. Karl had the driver's side door open and was rummaging around for something. Ostertag asked if I wanted something and I gestured toward Karl. Karl turned around and I grinned and asked him if he would do me a favor. I vividly remember his response, verbatim: "you don't look like you are in a position to be asking for no favors." At first I thought he was being mean and I was crushed and started to back away. But then he laughed and I relaxed and handed him the photo with a pen. He commented on the picture, asked if it was me and agreed to sign it (okay so the signature keeps insisting on posting at the top of the page for whatever reason but it was supposed to fit into the story here).

I think he was the first and likely the last celebrity I have ever asked for an autograph.

p.s. I think I need some tech lessons on posting photos because I am bad at this and I really should be in bed so I'm not fixing it. Sorry it takes up the ENTIRE PAGE!


emily said...

first, what makes you think "it was 1994" is an excuse? if it was the same 1994 i lived through we were nowhere near instyle.

second, i ain't got no love fer karl. i am doing by best to avoid his new street...

tiff said...

i love your post, and i am glad to hear that he was nice and accomodating to a friend of mine. he definitely outweighs Bob Costas in my book now. (well, he would have outweighed Bob Costas anyway...)

Soul-Fusion said...

em, of course we weren't in style in the sense that fashion magazines, celebrities and people with true style in 1994 wore such things - but somehow I think in 1994 I actually made an effort to achieve that look.

Autumn said...

That picture is hilarious! It reminds me of the days when my mom would constantly yell at me to pull my pants up. I am pretty sure I have a very similar picture somewhere (only minus the Karl) :)

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