"I'm in the mood for a cup of coffee," Betty White declared.
Now that she mentioned it, I could go for some steaming dark roast myself. Ordinarily, I'm not a big coffee fan, as I'm highly sensitive to the stimulating affects of caffeine. The last time I had a venti Frappacino, I went on a lawn mowing spree across the neighborhood and nearly took out three of Bill Paxton's prize-winning rose bushes.
But it had been a difficult couple of weeks between the media circus around Betty's possibly having a sex tape circulating and the passing of our dear friend, the great Rue MacClanahan. When my stress level is this high, I don't generally sleep well. So if I wasn't going to get a few winks anyway, I figured I may as well hype myself up on coffee to boost my productivity. There was a TV Guide crossword puzzle I'd been meaning to finish anyway.
So within an hour, we were on a helicopter bound for Seattle. It might seem a bit pretentious to charter a helicopter and trek all the way from LA to Seattle just for a cup of coffee ... but if I'm going to render myself unable to blink for hours at a time, I want the good stuff.
By 10 a.m., we were sipping espresso at Seattle's Best and winding down from the whirlwind of interviews and appearances to promote Betty's new sitcom, "Hot in Cleveland," which premiered last week to critical acclaim.
Our conversation started out relatively benign. I was complaining about the usual things ... like Tom Ford's incessant and unhealthy obsession with me; my insane social schedule; the inconvenience of having to import illegal eye cream into the country in the diapers of South African infants; the hideous birthmark on my thigh in the shape of Bob Barker's nose I keep threatening to have removed, but never do; syphilis.
The next 72 hours from that point are a bit fuzzy. It was Betty's idea to do a coffee house crawl ... which is similar to a pub crawl, but you don't so much crawl. It's really more of a sprint as you go from one coffee house to the next, each time doing stronger shots of espresso and losing the ability to speak at a rate slower than a chipmunk.
By 6 p.m., we running laps on the observation deck of the Space Needle, drinking Starbuck's Breakfast Blend from a liter bottle, and trying to locate the building Frasier must have lived in.
By Saturday, we were found by a police officer hanging upside down from the jungle gym at Volunteer Park. I'm pretty sure we ended up there because Betty wanted to recall what her bosoms looked like in a place other than her lap. The officer agreed not to arrest us for loitering and indecent exposure if Betty agreed to put her clothes back on and sign a waver that she would never appear upside down and topless in any public area of Washington ever again.
"I don't know why it matters," she said as she signed her name, "Once that sex tape comes out, the sight of me hanging topless from a jungle gym is going to seem rather elementary."
We spent most of the helicopter ride back to LA talking about Madonna and Gweneth Paltrow's bromance breakup and waging bets on which one of us would regain the ability to close our eyes first.
Love ya like an espresso bender in Frazierville,
For years now, Aunt Johnny has been doling out advice to celebrity friends and family - bringing a little dose of wisdom wrapped in wit, sprinkled with satire and sautéed in drama to those who can't seem to get their act together. He's helped to prevent fashion catastrophes, stupid career choices and petty romantic theatrics to some of the most famous names in show business and politics ... all from the comfort of his martini glass. Now, he's bringing his celebrity and pop culture buzz to San Diego Gay & Lesbian News. With tongue in cheek, he's taking pop culture shaken and stirred. Then he's shaking it some more.
To read about Betty White's sex tape scandal, click HERE.
To read about the Madonna/Gweneth breakup, click HERE.