Yesterday at the salon I saw an article about Leonardo DiCaprio being mistaken for a thief in a jewelry store because he was bundled up in a sweatshirt and hat, trying not to be recognized. Apparently it worked, until the police showed up.
Sometimes I roll my eyes at famous people going all crazy to avoid notice. Those millions of dollars you make: they come because you are recognizable. Being unrecognizable is ostensibly not a good thing if you're an actor or a musician.
Yesterday, however, I did not roll my eyes. Instead, I nodded in sympathy at this poor guy who was just trying to buy a gift for his mom and had to dress like a potential robber to avoid being chased down by fans and paparazzi.
I don't have fans, and no one is trying to take my picture. However, I'm not entirely unfamiliar with the phenomenon of being recognized when you don't want to be. For example, last week I got off of a plane after a few days of intense meetings. I was starving, so I went to my home base bar to grab something to eat. It was 10pm on a Saturday night. I looked like absolute hell, hunched over my food after hours of travel. So, of course this seemed like a good time for someone to talk to me about church business.
From her perspective, it makes complete sense: she needs to talk to me, I'm there, what else is there to it? Meanwhile, I am scrambling to find my work brain and not say something completely idiotic.
Fun clergy fact: The likelihood that you will run into a parishioner is directly proportional to how exhausted, frustrated, sloppily dressed, occupied with things other than church, or otherwise unclergylike you are at a given moment. Ministers cannot just run to the grocery store or stop into the pharmacy or go out to dinner like normal people. Perhaps we need to pile on hats and hooded sweatshirts and go incognito. Then again, it didn't work so well for Leo.