It was my first time in the Georgia Dome. The Falcons had a meet and greet for fans with Falcons legends. You could walk on the astroturf and get autographs. My friend and I saw an old-timer, a player we really admired, so we waited patiently as another fan talked with him.
We were both a bit nervous, so we just said hi and handed over our autograph books.
He let out a sigh and in a tired voice said, "Do you even know who I am?"
"Yes! You're (name withheld to protect the jaded)! I've been a fan for years." My friend offered further confirmation to this weary soul.
He consented and signed, but that exchange left a mark. Here's someone who was a household name to us, but he knew his star was already fading. He knew his fame was more about the jersey and how he performed in it, than about the guy whose name was stitched on the back.
It is a hard thing to be known for what you do.
Have you met any jaded stars?