Carol Burnett touched my arm the other night. Yes, the Carol Burnett who starred on Broadway, who had an 11-year-running TV variety show, who was in Noises Off (one of the funniest movies ever), who played Miss Hannigan in Annie, and who TOUCHED ME ON THE ARM.
Now, I won’t get into every little thing she-
Well, okay. She came to eat at the restaurant where I work as a hostess, and I had the privilege of showing her and her dining companions to their table. I was freaking out somewhat, especially because Ms. Burnett performed the role of Princess Winnifred in the 1959 Broadway debut of the musical Once Upon a Mattress—a role that I myself played in high school. The following is a rough transcript of our conversation:
Carol: And you are going to show us to our table?
Carol: And what’s your name, dear?
Me: (nearly hyperventilating) Ali.
Carol: Well hi, Ali! I’m Carol [oh my god, I know!!!], and this is [someone to whom I paid no attention whatsoever].
Me: (after politely saying hello to whats-her-face) Now, I was going to play it cool, but I want you to know that I was Princess Winnifred-
Carol: (gasp!) Oh! (touching my arm) Wasn’t that play so much fun?
Me: Yes! So much fun! And you know, I did some comedy in college, too, and I really appreciate strong women in comedy.
Carol: Thank you!
Me: (looking at Carol meaningfully) Thank you.
Carol: (upon receiving the menu I handed her) Thank you, Ali!
Me: (overwhelmed/flustered to the point of speechlessness)
My face was red for the next half hour, and my co-workers couldn't help but note with amusement/alarm how worked up I was. It was thrilling.
Conclusion: Carol Burnett is as adorable as she is talented and inspirational, and she looks great considering she’s 76 years old. Thank you, Carol, for touching our hearts. And my arm.