I have long been of the belief that one should never meet their heroes because it’s bound to be disappointing. Really, what can come of a meet up with someone who you’ve invested so much in and who doesn’t know you from Adam?
Well let me tell you this darling ones, I was wrong.
Yeah, I was more than a little nervous before the reading on Tuesday night. Thankfully I ran into Goetz and he proved to be a delightful distraction from my jitters.
As the reading wound down, Goetz and I stayed in our seats waiting out the line. We played catch up until there were only two or three people in line. Eventually we stood up and my brain fell out. I think Goetz asked me about how I got into the book and how I knew Walsh.
Hoo boy. I told him I wasn’t sure how Walsh found me, but that I was pretty sure it was through iwilldare.com.
“I don’t think I’ve ever actually read a blog,” Goetz said.
After I picked my head up off the floor and put it back on. I tried to explain a little about it and how I was so nervous I wanted to vomit because I’ve never actually met Jim Walsh. Because Goetz is so smart, he got what I meant through all my nervous fumbling.
Finally, it was my turn. Walsh was sitting behind the little signing table. I stood as straight as I could, because I feel braver when I stand at my full height, and handed my book over to him.
“Hi,” My face split into two with the biggest grin possible. “I’m Jodi.”
He slapped his hands on the table and stood up. “Oh my god, JODI!” He came around the table and hugged me. “It’s so good to see you.”
We hugged for a minute and I giggled because I am a doofis.
“Guys,” he said over to the dudes from his publisher. “This is Jodi. I love her writing.”
Let me repeat that in case you missed it, darling ones.
“I love her writing.”
Yes. The man I have idolized for over a decade, the man I longed to emulate as a college student, this man said he loved my writing. It was everything I could do not to pass out right there.
The rest of the moment passed in a blur. He asked me why I didn’t ask any questions during the Q&A portion of the reading. I had to resist the urge not to go off on the Garrison Keillor nutso woman. Instead, I told him how I had run into an old college friend and introduced him to Goetz.
“Goetz was probably there the night I played that jukebox,” I said.
“I swear, when I close my eyes I can see that jukebox,” Walsh said.
“It’s not there anymore,” Goetz and I said together. “The bar burned down years ago.”
“Just think Goetz,” I said. “If you’d have given me money for the jukebox you could have been in the book instead of Kelly.”
Goetz just smiled and shook his head.
I am not sure what I said in parting. Probably something about how nice it was to meet him. I honestly have no idea at all.
I do know that I floated upstairs with Goetz and he told me about teaching History and I told him about being a corporate whore. When I gave Goetz a hug goodbye, he told me he’d read my blog.
“Yeah, Goetz,” I said. “it’s the Internet, you should check it out.”
“I hear it’s gonna be big,” he said and walked away.
Oh yes, and in case you forgot, Jim Walsh told me he loved my writing. So the moral of this story, darling ones, don’t be afraid of meeting your idols — it could be magical.