Let me tell you about the time I saw LeBron James at The Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills.
It was June of 2008 and the Lakers and Celtics were set to square off in the NBA Finals for the first time since 1987. LeBron's Cavs had been eliminated by the Celitcs a few weeks earlier in a hard-fought seven-game series.
My wife and I had been married for just two months and our friend Max's parents were in town from San Francisco and staying at the Peninsula.
They wanted us to come by the hotel so they could give us a wedding gift. My wife was already at the hotel so I told her that I would just meet her there.
When I got to the hotel there was a whole mess of people. I shouldn't be surprised considering it was June in Los Angeles. While looking around the hotel for my wife I saw LeBron James sitting in a chair. He looked how I look when I'm waiting for my wife to finish trying on clothes at a department store.
I'm not the type to walk up to celebrities. But if we happen to make eye contact I'll gesture in a way to acknowledge that I know who he/she is. LeBron never looked in my direction and I didn't care enough to wait for him to do so.
So I started walking around the hotel to find my wife while texting my friend Nat, who is from Cleveland and (used to) owns multiple LeBron jerseys. The text read something like: "lebron in peninsula hotel lobby. come now."
I found my wife and told her that I just saw LeBron in the lobby. My wife knows nothing about sports but she's unashamed to approach anyone. Whether it's Darryl Strawberry at LAX, Richard Lewis on a flight to Newark, or Forrest Whitaker and Mary J. Blige having dinner with their spouses after the NAACP Image Awards, she has no hesitation when it comes to embarrassing herself.
So immediately she asked where he was. I told her that he was sitting in a chair by the front desk but she shouldn't approach him. "He's probably on vacation. Leave him alone."
But she was adamant about going up to him. I couldn't restrain her. I followed behind her but at a safe distance. She walked right up to him, got his attention, said something to him with two thumbs up, and walked away. He smirked.
She walked back to me. I asked her what she said to him.
"I just said 'Go Lakers!'"
"What?" I replied.
"Isn't he on the Lakers?"
"No. He's plays for Cleveland."
"He probably thinks I'm such a bitch."
"Yep," I said.
And that's the story of the time I saw LeBron at the Peninsula Hotel.