Awhile back, I was searching for something to dress up my outfit. Marty looked me over and said, "Why don't you wear that scarf from the video?"
Ah, yes. The scarf from the video. It certainly is lovely, with its multi-colored pattern. It's also not mine. In fact, when I walked into the offices of Simon & Schuster the morning of the video shoot, the scarf was adorning the neck of one of the publicists.
I was there to record a promotional video for Weekends with Daisy. Jillian the publicist -- and everybody else I met that morning -- was impeccably dressed. Most of the women wore skirts and heels. Me? I was in jeans and a t-shirt. I looked like a schlump, but for good reason. I had arranged with NEADS to borrow a visual aid for the video -- a 4-month-old yellow Lab. Puppies are messy under any circumstances. There's always lots to clean up and wipe off. Jeans can hide that sort of thing. A silk dress and nylons, not so much. Also, if I was going to stand by the curb in midtown Manhattan urging Chips to "better go now," while car horns and sirens blared all around us, I'd do it in comfort, not while tottering on high heels and holding my skirt down in the wind.
So, that's why I'm wearing jeans and a t-shirt in the video, but it doesn't explain the scarf.
Here's the story, and then some. After I arrived at Simon & Schuster and found a safe place to stand while the entire workforce stampeded out of their offices to descend upon Chips, I went into a meeting with my editor, agent, and two publicists. Somebody gave Chips a full bowl of water. He lapped at it for a moment, then grasped the rim between his teeth and tipped the bowl over onto the carpet. The meeting was delayed while we scurried about, trying to contain the damage by throwing paper towels over the rapidly spreading pool of water.
Eventually, we settled in at the conference table. I drank from a cup while Chips napped at my feet.
An hour or so later, it was time to head downstairs to the studio to shoot the video. I gathered up my belongings and stuffed them into a tote bag crammed with dog toys and emergency cleanup supplies. I coaxed Chips out from under the table and then, because not enough water had been spilled that day, I grabbed my cup and threw its contents at my chest. Not intentionally -- I was aiming for my mouth but the puppy threw me off balance.
So, there I was, just minutes before appearing on camera, with a large water stain on my shirt.
"I can dry it in the ladies' room," I offered hopefully, picturing myself doing a sort of limbo beneath the hand dryer. The others shook their heads and considered the dark pattern on my chest. Somebody bemoaned that I didn't have a scarf to cover it up. That's when everyone's eyes turned toward Jillian. Without missing a beat, she unwound the brightly colored scarf from her neck and arranged it over my water stain.
We trooped down to the studio where Chips greeted the cameraman with a tail wag, wandered to the end of his leash and squatted. "No!" I yelled so loudly that Chips stopped mid-pee to stare at me. "I'm so, so, so sorry," I apologized, even as I handed the other publicist, Mary, the cleanup supplies and left her (in heels and skirt) to dab delicately at the stain while I hurried Chips to the elevator and out to the street where he peed a river onto the sidewalk.
When we returned to the studio, there were two director's chairs facing the camera. One was for Chips. I lifted him onto the seat and he sat there, wobbling for a moment and looking at me uncertainly. I assured him that he was being a good boy, sat in my chair, and the two of us settled in for the ride.
Chips was the ideal co-star. He was well behaved. He gave me a high-five when I asked. He stayed in his chair the entire time. And he's such a scene stealer, that when you watch the video, I challenge you to even notice the beautiful scarf around my neck. Check it out here.