Ramble On Ron

Diamonds, Music and other Facets of Life

My Howard Stern Experience

Posted on | July 26, 2013 | 2 Comments

I can’t believe it has taken me so long to talk about my Howard Stern experience, but here goes. We were staying at The Four Seasons at Mandalay Bay for the yearly JCK Jewelry Show. As my wife and I are walking out to the elevator area, I see Howard Stern standing right there waiting for the elevator with Ralph Cirella and a bodyguard. I immediately walk up to him and say, “Howard! I’m a huge fan,” and go to shake his hand. He, of course, gives me a fist pump because of his OCD, which makes sense. So, we get on the elevator and he says to me, “What’s in the backpack?” We were heading to the pool and I had my backpack with me. I said, “Jewelry.” Then he asked if I was there for the jewelry show, when does it end, and we had a nice conversation on the elevator. As we are riding my wife nudges me and says, “Ask him for a picture.” I say, “I don’t want to bother him.” So as we are getting off the elevator my wife says, in these exact words, “Would it be terrible if we asked you for a picture?” Howard said, “Sorry I have to go to work.” He was in Vegas for America’s Got Talent – which by the way is one of the lamest, sellout things he has ever done. Remember this incident because it plays out again at the end of this story.

So throughout the next few days we saw Howard and Beth again in the elevator, (he was staying a few doors down from us) Beth at the pool, Ralph in the gym – I even tweeted Ralph thanks for chatting with us and he replied.

 

Granted, Ralph is the guy everyone tools on, but have been a devout listener for 25 years so it was all very cool to me. He was actually a pretty nice guy. Even seeing and talking to Howard was surreal because I feel like I know so much about his life and now I am interacting with him – it was weird.

After I get back from the trip I decided I wasn’t done with Howard yet. So I call the show and get an answer. I said, “I met Howard in Vegas and wanted to talk about what it’s like for a fan to meet him in person.” HOLD ON. I was in the car on the way to DC and just stayed on hold and listened to the show. Thirty minutes later…“Ron from Baltimore, you’re on the air!”

OK – now this is crazy. I don’t have an audio of the conversation but here’s how it went:

Howard: “Ron from Baltimore, you’re on the air.”

Ron: “Howard, I’ve been listening for 25 years, thanks for taking my call, we just met out in Vegas”

Howard: “Which one were you?”

Ron: “I was in the elevator wearing an Orioles hat.”

Howard: “Oh, the jewelry guy.”

Ron: “Yes”

Howard to Robin: “There was a big jewelry show out there. I also saw Adam Levine from…”

Ron: “Maroon Five”

Howard: “Yeah, he was out there”

Ron: “Yes, he played a private concert for the jewelry industry one night”

Howard: “How much do you think they paid him for that?”

Ron: “We were talking about that, maybe $200K?” (if any JCK people are reading this please chime in)

Howard: “At least a million.”

Ron: “I saw Beth at the pool, she looked great, it must be really hard for you to go places because you are such a daunting figure.”

Howard: “Yeah, I tried to go to the pool and some fucking lady was trying to take a picture of me – I could see that she was trying with her phone and I told her to stop taking my fucking picture.”

And he went on a little rant about this and how he hates when people try taking pics of him – then I interrupted:

Ron: “You know my wife asked you for a picture after we got off the elevator.”

This is when the conversation completely turned.

Howard: “Well, I was on the way to work and…”

Ron: “Do you have a policy where you don’t take pictures with fans?”

Howard: “I take plenty of pictures with people, listen Ron, I gotta go.”

Ron: “But you were really cool about it…”

Howard: “Stop interrupting me! CLICK”

That was it. Then he proceeded to insult me after he hung up on me.

Howard: “Ron was only 4 feet tall so a picture would have looked stupid anyway.”

Disclaimer: For those of you who don’t know me, I am 5’9 and my wife is 5’4. Not tall, but average Jewish size. Howard is just an awkwardly sized goon so everyone seems short.

Robin: “I love the way people always ask AFTER you are leaving the elevator”

Howard: “Yeah, we had like 10 minutes on the elevator, he could have just asked me then. I was trying to explain to the guy why I didn’t take the picture. Whatever, then he would have shown it to everyone, and I didn’t look good…”

BLAH BLAH BLAH

So I got hung up on like everyone else. I did have him on the hook for a good 2-3 minutes which is pretty damn good.

Of course, after he hung up on me I went into a stream of regrets. I should have just shut up and hung around for the news, I didn’t have to mention the picture, I could have been his best buddy and gotten invited to his house at The Hamptons – a lot of fantasies and bullshit went through my head about what I could and should have said. Reminded me of the Seinfeld episode “Jerk Store” – if you watch Seinfeld, you’ll know what I’m talking about.

I also got a number of calls from friends who heard it and couldn’t believe it. In fact, two days later, Howard mentioned me AGAIN. He said that a nice couple asked him for a picture and he said no, and then went into the same schtick about how he hates taking pictures.

So…the real question is, should he have taken a picture with a loyal fan? Without people like me he wouldn’t have shit. Did he hang up on me because he was put on the defensive and didn’t want his fans to think he was a dick? Should I call back? I know he’ll remember me. I think he made my wife feel like he did when Paul McCartney dissed him and his daughter at his concert when he asked for an autograph.

What do you think? Is it over and just another good story to tell?

To me, of course it’s never over until he dies and maybe “Ron The Jeweler” will cross paths with Howard again!

 

Comments

  • Scott Katz

    Ron,
    Great story. Sounds like it was a lose-lose for you there. If on the elevator you did ask for the pic, he may not have been as friendly as he was with you. I thought you were going to offer him some sort of orignal piece of jewelery. Maybe you call back and offer to design something for him and/or Beth?
    Skatz

  • rambleonron

    Hi Skatz – I’d rather buy Beth’s ring from her when she gets rid of him! Thanks for reading, see you at camp.