Waving at Clooney in the Taco Bell Drive-Thru

Turning the corner, we see Clooney. He is the passenger in the car behind our student stand-in. He is out of the car and walks forward so he can see around the corner. He appears to be checking out our impromptu lark.

Photo courtesy of "PopSugar.com":http://popsugar.com/2504945

George Clooney is in Albuquerque--otherwise know as Tamalewood--to film _Men Who Stare at Goats_ (the working title for film due out in late 2009 or 2010). This brush with fame happened in early November 2008.

Scene One: George is sitting at the downstairs bar of my favorite restaurant, Zinc, deep in conversation with a movie colleague or agent when I walk in. The bar is abuzz with "That's Clooney!" whispers, though the star-struck patrons politely/thankfully give him his berth. George eventually leaves Zinc, and my group departs soon after to walk to a different bar. (George is seen out man-about-towning in Albuquerque frequently during the shoot. He seems to be having a good time here.)

Scene Two: After leaving Zinc, I walk with my friends, Chris Shadbolt and his girlfriend, to the Taco Bell across a side street for some late-night tacos. The inside counter service is closed, but the drive-thru is open. Without a car but still happily hungry, on a whim we decide to walk through the drive-thru. We step into the drive-thru queue and negotiate with the first customer who pulls up to the order sign--a student in a pickup who trips the customer-waiting signal to alert the unseen clerk inside for us.

While the driver waits, we talk to the box and then walk around the corner to the service window. The clerk is confused by our stunt and hasn't taken the student's order yet. We explain ourselves to the clerk and walk back around to thank the student for being a good sport.

Turning the corner, we see Clooney. He is the passenger in the car behind our student stand-in. He is out of the car and walks forward so he can see around the corner. He appears to be checking out our impromptu lark.

Chris shouts, "Hey, George!" and waves. George waves back and quickly gets back in his car without saying anything in reply.

I speculate that Clooney's curious inner director may have been capturing the scene for its spontaneity. If we had tried this in L.A., we probably would have been shot.

We get our bag of rolled enchiladas with a side of celebrity-story salsa and walk away.

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