When this Intel commercial ran, it was (still is) one of my favorite commercials.  There is such an inherent feeling of rightness to it:  that we don’t have to be guitar-wielding bad boys to be rock stars, and that different people have different ideas of what a “rock star” is to them.

Today, I met one of my rock stars, author Elizabeth Gilbert.  She did a signing at a local store and my friend and fellow fan called me and left a message saying “It’s a commitment that we will go together!” (A play on Gilbert’s most recent memoir.)

I hadn’t read Committed yet, but I had read…devoured, absorbed, loved, wished to have written…her earlier memoir, Eat Pray Love.

So to say that I felt as nervous as a school girl would have been an understatement.  But I have long been a proponent of the (seemingly) obvious fact that rock stars – whatever their ilk – are really just people…like you and me.  Remember?  Chop wood, carry water and all that?

So all morning, I reminded myself that Ms. Gilbert is, in fact, just a person. Sadly, the talking  myself down didn’t go too well.

I met her, and she was lovely, and I don’t think I was too much of a babbling idiot.  But my goal was to not have been a babbling idiot at all, and in that, I think that I failed.

No matter how many times we might tell ourselves that our rock stars are only people, to us they are still ROCK STARS, in all caps, with sparkly stuff and awesomeness oozing out their pores.

I guess it got me to wondering just what is it about our stars that make us behave that way.  Do we wish to be like them, with the fame, fortune and adulation of millions?  Or do we wish simply to have that kind of talent?  What makes people seek the autographs of actors, musicians, athletes…authors?  Do we think that their name will give us some sort of power?  That some of their own magic will somehow rub off on us, making us less mundane?  Do we simply admire their greatness, and hope that somehow attracting their attention will validate us? 

I don’t have the answer to that yet; nor will my answer be the same as everyone else’s.  But it has given me something to think about.

And I got one of the best signings ever!  Inside the cover of my copy of Committed, Gilbert wrote, simply:  “Blessings.”

She’s a total rock star.