Anti-Stalking Laws and Overpriced Martinis:
How To Crash A Fundraiser and Get Away With It
Picture it-Sicily, 1932. A young Sicilian girl with breasts like calzonesÖ..
Oh, sorry. Wrong story.
Like any good Philes, we had been on a constant lookout for any possible opportunity to meet anyone even remotely connected to the X-Files. Needless to say that when we heard that Gillian was going to be in town for a fundraiser, we knew it was an opportunity not to be missed. So we call the name of the foundation for which Gillian is appearing and sure enough, we just couldnít afford to go. (Well, I mean, we could have, but D.C. is one of the places in this country where prostitution is still illegal, although you wouldnít know that from walking around downtown after midnight.) At any rate, we decide to do the only thing left.
Researching this fundraiser is easy-thank God for the Internet! (Helping fans stalk stars since 1992.) We printed out the floorplan of the hotel and I (on my lunch hour) walked down to the hotel and inquired as to which ballroom the dinner would be in, etc., and to case the joint for back exits and other possible emergency escape routes. By the time July 12 rolled around, we were ready.
We met at 5:30pm outside the St. Regis Hotel on 16th and K Streets NW, about two blocks from the White House. Security was tight, and we didnít want to arouse suspicion (as if us just standing on the streetcorner werenít enough to arouse suspicion.) We saw people going in and out-but no Gillian.
We finally moved across the street to the front of the hotel about 7:15. We could see people inside but we couldnít be sure what we were seeing and if it was indeed Gillian herself. After putzing around for another hour, we finally make our way into the hotel bar.
(I canít believe I paid $10 bucks for a martini!)
So, we sit in the bar (located directly across the lobby from the ballroom where the dinner is) and drink and occasionally go to the ladiesí room to try and sneak a peek inside. We sit there until 10:15. By this time I am ready to call it a day-Iím tired, Iím hungry, Iím broke, and I look like something the cat found lying on the side of the highway (see the above picture-Iím the one NOT in black). Sarah insists that we sit in the lobby for another couple of minutes-reluctantly, I agree.
So, after another 10 minutes of looking nervous and fidgeting, Sarah has had it. She stands up and announces that sheís going in. (I grab my cell phone and prepare to call my parents to have them come bail us out of prison, because that is the only way I can see this ending.) Sarah marches right up to the door and a woman approaches her (we later find out itís Cyn, the woman who runs the GAWS.) I see them talk, and the woman goes back into the ballroom. Sarah gestures to me to come over, and blindly, I follow.
What happens next is almost unbelievable.
Gillian comes out and gives us this look and says, "Is it true that you girls have been standing outside for five hours just to see me?"
We can only nod.
"But WHY?" Sheís smiling a big smile, and I canít help but start babbling like a brook.
"Weíre such huge fans of yours, and we really wanted to meet you but we couldnít afford to buy tickets to the fundraiser."
Gillian starts laughing, and says, "You silly girls! Why didnít you come in earlier?!"
Again, I open my big olí mouth. "Well, you know, there are anti-stalking laws in this country."
That gets another big laugh, and she says to us, "Well, come on inside." We protest vehemently, but she insists. Once inside, she says, "Can I have everyoneís attention please? These girls have been standing outside for five hours just to meet me! Isnít that so great?" The crowd breaks out into applause and Sarah and I swear we are going to die of embarrassment. Then Gillian turns to us. "Are you girls hungry? Do you want something to eat?" We say no, but she insists, asking, "Can we get some food here for these girls?" We insist again that weíre fine, and she says, "Well, how about a drink? Do you girls want a soda or something?"
Once again I open my mouth. "No, really, weíre fine-we had drinks at the bar." For some reason, everyone seems to find this amusing.
Gillian take pictures with us and gives us autographs, and invites us to stick around for a bit and talk to people. We end up talking to some very nice people who take our names and email addresses and we tell them what the hot nightspots in D.C. are.
Finally about 11 or so, we decide itís time to go since we have to catch the Metro home. Gillian gives us big hugs and tells us how great we are and thanks us for coming.
To the people who helped us, who listened to us plan and plot and said, "we'll bail you out if you get arrested"-our deepest and most sincere thanks. Your support means so much!
To all the people who said we would never pull this off, we say: Nyah nyah nyah nyah =P. (That's you, Tom.)
To the people at the fundraiser-thank you for your hospitality and good humor towards us 'silly girls'.
Most importantly, thank you to Gillian-your kindness means so much to us.