This is a great read! Taylor Watts met Cate in Cincinnati and shared the experience. Cate seems to be a truly wonderful person.
Living in the Midwest, I seldom see a celebrity. I often see politician, but they hardly count. When I do get to see the occasional celebrity, it’s quite a treat. Recently, I saw Cate Blanchett, who is in town making the film Carol, which Todd Haynes is directing. My partner and I encountered her at breakfast one Sunday. “Look,” he said over his coffee. He points across the restaurant. “That’s Cate Blanchett at the other counter.”
Naturally, I had my doubts. Our surroundings weren’t grand enough for the likes of an Academy Award winner. I looked over and I saw the resemblance, but I was not convinced. Somehow, I found the courage to go ask her. I’m not normally a busybody, but this was too good to pass up. I approached her politely. “Ma’am, I don’t normally do this and I apologize if I am about to offend you, but are you who I think you are?”
The woman turned and smiled. She said, “that depends on who you think I am, but my name is Cate.“
I think it was the voice more than anything that impressed me. Blanchett voice has a remarkable quality that makes it unique. Time seemed to have stopped for me. I looked at her like a little love struck fool. I am sure she realized how special the moment was for me. Sensing that I was lost for words, she introduced me to her son, who was having breakfast with her. I turn to this young boy, who looks about six years old, and I said, “Young man, do you are the luckiest boy in the world because your mommy is both beautiful and talented and she makes people like me so happy.”
The little boy giggled. He must have thought I was nuts. I thanked Ms. Blanchett for her time. I apologized again for disturbing her and I turned to leave. Ms. Blanchett told me to have a great day. It was like a blessing from on high. I told her to have great life. In my opinion a great day wasn’t enough for Cate Blanchett. She deserved a great life simply for talking to me.
Celebrity status comes with its own yin and yang. The private life must be balanced with the public life. The demands placed upon the public persona must by dreadful when coupled with the need for a private existence. It must be worse when there are children involved. Had I known that Ms. Blanchett was with her son, I would not have intruded. Given the circumstances, she would have been right to tell me to go away. I would have done so without thinking any the less of her, but she didn’t do that. She was incredibly gracious to me. Maybe it was look of admiration on my face, or the sound of sincerity in my voice, but Ms. Blanchett was the soul of kindness.
A few minutes later, Ms. Blanchett came by my table as she was leaving. She spoke to my partner and patted me on the back. Then I watched as she and her son left the restaurant walking hand in hand. There was no entourage accompanying them. They simply walked down the street to their next destination. I realized at that moment that I was watching Cate Blanchett in her best role. That morning she was simply a mother having breakfast with her son. What a privilege it was to see this! It wasn’t an act. It was just real life.