November 3, 2014 will go down in history for me. It was the day that I met George Takei – in person, shook his hand, and took a picture with him.
I was on the phone with my grandmother while heading to the T station when I saw him. I immediately told my grandmother that I would have to call her back and ran after him as he went inside the building. My heart was beating 100 miles an hour and I was trying really hard not be a crazy fan girl.
Growing up, I didn’t see many Asian Americans on tv or in movies. Watching George Takei in Star Trek was HUGE for me. It was one of the first times that I realized Asian Americans could become actors.
After that, I was excited to see Margaret Cho, Ming Na, the cast of Joy Luck Club, and the other subsequent Asian American actors – ones who were playing real roles.
There is great value in seeing someone that looks like you on the television or movie screen. It makes you realize that we are important. We are more than outsiders. We are a part of the reflection of this country. We can be taken seriously. We can redefine the voice of America. We are beautiful, star-worthy, and present.
I thanked Mr. Takei for being an important representation for me in my childhood. I also thanked him for all that he continues to do for Asian Americans, for the LGBTQ community, for marriage equality, and for the acting community. I was completely floored to have encountered him by chance. He was kind, warm, funny, and AMAZING. His partner was also there with him – and he was kind, warm, funny, and amazing, too.
This 5 minute encounter definitely makes the top 5 moments of 2014.
(Why was George Takei in Boston? He was here to talk about his new documentary, To Be Takei, with the Boston Asian American Film Festival. Check out the documentary and the BAAFF!)
Have you had a brush with celebrity? If so, when and who? If not, who would you like to meet?