Best Place to See Celebrities Out of Their Element - 2000
Wild Oats Community Market, Ladue
America's founding fathers may have outlawed the ranks of nobility in this country, but that technicality has not stopped the common man from creating a distinctly American version of the peerage: celebrities. Celebrities are the U.S.A.'s No. 1 export, a burden on the working class we all willingly support. That "living wage" thing sounds like some sort of welfare scam, but paying Jim Carrey $20 million for Me, Myself & Irene? Son, that's good business. Of course, they enrich our lives with their various displays of talent and excess, so it all evens out, right? Well, if you want a little more value from your celebrity dollars, head to Wild Oats in Ladue, and you might catch a glimpse of one performing more mundane tasks. Like what, you ask? Like TV weatherman Dave Murray comparison-shopping for bottled water ("Looks like a 50 percent chance of Calistoga Springs today, eh, Dave?"). Observe various members of the Rams and Blues organizations as they buy sandwiches and health supplements. And then there was Elvis Costello purchasing throat spray and cough drops before his October show (the days of amphetamines and whiskey are long gone, apparently). The finest sighting yet was Red Hot Chili Pepper Anthony Kiedis in sweatpants and Clark Kent glasses, furtively leafing through a Rolling Stone in the express lane (halfhearted attempt at disguise or desperate plea for attention?). Under the humming fluorescent lights of the grocery store, celebrities seem so ... so ... human, for lack of a better word -- almost as if they were people like you or me.