B CROWD CELEB ENCOUNTERS: THOMAS IAN NICHOLAS
Hey there! I’m LeeAnn and I’m really popular. I’m so popular that people who I went to high school with have said, “I don’t remember you. At all. Is it safe to say that you look better now?” If that’s not popular enough, I also once got an email from ProActiv telling me they missed me. Now that’s a missed connection I can get behind, even if it does ruin my towels in the process, but please only give me the medium plan and check with me about that reoccurring payment.
Over the years, my popularity has grown. Part of this popularity growth is due to my naturally shiny hair and another part is my knack for meeting B, C, D, and even E-list celebrities. Some of these run-ins have been through planned meet and greets and others have been magically random. A few of my favorite run-ins include John Oates (of Hall & Oates), MTV’s Jesse Camp (winner of MTV’s “I Wanna Be a VJ”), Thomas Ian Nicholas (Rookie of the Year, American Pie), Luke Perry (Dylan McKay - Beverly Hills, 90210), Jon La Joie (Taco - The League), Christine Elise (Emily Valentine – Beverly Hills, 90210) and more.
Throughout these articles, I will share how I met each of these celebrities and just how tall they really are. For scale, I’m 5’8” and sometimes wear Payless heels.
First up, the tale of how I met Thomas Ian Nicholas and then signed up for his shitty acoustic bands’ email list, which I still get emails from because I’m too lazy to unsubscribe.
You may remember Thomas Ian Nicholas as the adorable, scrappy preteen, Henry Rowengartner in Rookie of the Year. It was the movie about a young boy who broke his arm and it healed so well that he pitched for the Cubs at a super, fast speed.
Thomas Ian Nicholas also played Kevin Myers in the American Pie series. He was known as the guy who dated Tara Reid’s character and learned how to go down on a lady by spelling the alphabet with his tongue.
I was fairly new to Chicago, maybe a few months in, and saw in the Red Eye that Thomas Ian Nicholas was going to be playing at some bar with his shitty acoustic band. It was perfect because one of my best friends was coming to visit that night and now we had something to do.
In case you couldn’t tell by my frequent use of the adjective “shitty,” I am not the biggest fan of acoustic music, especially at bars in Wrigleyville. I mean, I once got kicked out of a house party in college for making fun of the shitty acoustic music. I made a vow to myself to suck it up music wise and not be a total asshole so that I could see the boy, now man, who I once thought about when I was 10 as I put a rolled-up ball of socks underneath a pillow and grinded on top of said pillow. I’m a lady of mystery, so I left this little fun fact out of our conversation when we did eventually meet him.
My friend and I got to the bar and there were maybe 10-15 people there to see this former child actor go to town on those six strings. Again, it was perfect. I knew that not only was I in the same room as him, but that it was going to be really easy to meet him. After his set, my friend and I took some pictures that were very obvious that we were trying to get him in the background. I had a couple of drinks in me at this point so I did not care one bit about how dumb we must have looked. I went to the bathroom, put some new paint on my lips and saw Thomas Ian Nicholas standing near a table nearby. He had his sweet Ray-Ban sunglasses hanging in the neck hole on the back of his shirt. I sidled up next to him, grabbed the glasses off his back, put them on and demanded we take a picture together.
Do you see this? I told you my hair was shiny. At 28-years-old in this picture, this is one of my proudest moments. I gave Thomas Ian Nicholas back his sunglasses and talked to him for a little bit. I don’t really remember our exact conversation, but I do remember feeling kind of bad that we ignored his actual concert to take pictures of us standing in front of him so I signed up for his email newsletter. I am horribly lazy and don’t unsubscribe from anything so every once in a while, I’ll see an update from my old pal, Thomas Ian Nicholas. It is delivered to my Yahoo account which I don’t check all that often, but it is a fun reminder of a great night.
In case you were wondering, Thomas Ian Nicholas is really frickin’ short. If you were to meet him on an online dating app, he would probably say he was 5’8”. This man is not 5’8”. I would lean closer (and I did have to lean) to 5’5”, maybe 5’6” if he was wearing his Payless kitten heels.
If I’m feeling motivated, maybe I’ll update my email address on his newsletter so I’ll get in-time updates sent to my Gmail account and we can rekindle our flame. Or maybe he bought a new pair of sunglasses and will give me the old ones because damn, those look good and were probably full price.