I turned in the NYC parking garage and gazed in the direction that my son was pointing.
There was a black SUV parked directly behind me, and on the windshield, under the windshield wiper, was a torn piece of paper that said “Paul Simon.”
I snorted. “It’s not Paul Simon’s car,” I said.
“How do you know?” asked my son.
“I think if it was really Paul Simon’s car, there would be a more official sign on it than a scrap of paper. Or probably no sign. Either way, it is a joke,” I said knowingly.
Granted, the car did have a primo spot in the lot. And it was a really nice SUV. But I didn’t think that celebs were generally in the habit of marking their cars with handwritten notes pointing out who the car belongs to, AND I doubted that the lot employees new or cared who Paul Simon was. Art Garfunkel, maybe. But not Paul Simon.
Still, I thought it was kind of funny. So I pulled out my pocket camera that I keep in my bag for just this kind of situation, and I leaned in and took a picture of the sign.
Then I laughed, turned around, and almost stepped on Paul Simon’s wife.
She looked somewhat amused.
I was mortified.
“Oh. Oh jeez. This is embarrassing,” I stammered. “Here you are coming to pick up your car and you find some idiot taking a picture of your windshield.”
She smiled indulgently.
“I’m really sorry,” I said. “Um. Nice car!”
She continued smiling. I had no idea what else to say.
Fortunately, at that moment, our car arrived. I started to get into the passenger seat and then stopped and turned to her.
It suddenly occurred to me that I wasn’t 100% sure the woman standing there was, in fact, Paul Simon’s wife. Maybe I had just made an idiot out of myself in front of someone who actually couldn’t care less that I was taking a picture of Paul Simon’s car.
I had to ask.
“You are Edie Brickell, right?” I asked her.
“Yes,” she said.
“Oh, good,” I responded. “I wasn’t sure. Maybe you should have a sign on you, too.”