By Times staff writer
© St. Petersburg Times, published January 25, 2001
Think you've spied Justin Timberlake hanging out at Adobe Gila's in Ybor City or Carmen Electra at the Green Iguana? Here are a few tips to help you handle the situation.
Don't squeal or go, "Waaasssssuuuuuppppp?!" (this applies to both men and women).
Keep that camera holstered for now. Gauge the situation and get photos later if the celebrity will let you. A camera flash can drive a celebrity away faster than a Jets coach's tenure.
Don't go on and on about how much you like their work. Make a compliment that shows you know their stuff and move on.
Don't treat them like royalty, but don't be overly familiar, either.
Don't act like these people should know you, just because you know them.
Don't try to out-cool celebrities -- they're celebrities and will always be cooler than you.
And don't try to be their best buddies. Act like you might act if you met someone interesting in a coffee shop: nice, friendly ... but not too friendly.
If you want them to treat you like a person, don't ask for an autograph. If you want them to treat you like a fan, ask for an autograph or picture.