Reflections from Witnessing the Red Carpet

Stefanie Townsend

I was recently on my way home, going down the side of the street I normally take to get to the train. On my way there, I was met by a slightly unexpected blockade.

Earlier that morning, I did catch a glimpse of the red carpet. By the time I had returned to the same spot that afternoon, the festivities had begun. Earlier than I expected, of course. Curious, I waited to see what was going on.

It took a while for people to begin coming out, and it was a slow process, but I did catch sightings of two very well-known actors (and yes, I did get some video footage in case people didn’t believe me!). In the moment, I was absolutely thrilled. It was such an exciting event, standing there with so many people, watching stars go by, people that others look up to and idolize! I was right there seeing them!

But I was quickly whistling a different tune on the way home. It felt like I was in a dream for all that time, waiting, seeing the actors, then going on my way. It wasn’t the time I spent there that threw me for a loop. In fact, it was the proximity to the actors.

I had a lot of time to think and reflect while I was standing patiently to see what all the fuss was about. People walked by with their good looks and beautiful outfits, well put together, smiles on their faces and cameras following them.

I realized that I, and everyone around me, could easily do that. We could easily go home, gussy ourselves up, put on nice clothes and head out. That isn’t reserved solely for those more famous.

I realized that the only thing separating me and the actors was a short gate and some bodyguards (if you don’t count the people in front of me in the crowd who were also enjoying the scene).

I realized that I am an actor, too. I share their profession. And that realization is what changed my perspective the most.

They are actors, too. They are people, normal people, too. The only thing different, the only reason they are put on this artificial pedestal, is the amount of acting credits they have and the amount of people who know they exist.

All because they went to the right auditions. Or even just the one right audition.

They were just at the right place and at the right time.

And I, along with my other non-famous acting friends, have not been at the right place and at the right time yet. Perhaps we never will be.

The difference is that these people experienced one pivotal moment that others have not experienced that catapulted them to this status.

I don’t want it to seem that I was disappointed. I’m not. It was an incredible experience and I would love to catch people walking down the red carpet again.

Realizing that the separation between us is not as large as the media and celebrity worshipping culture would like us to believe, however, does put a different spin on the experience.