One night in 1998 I was hanging out in the V-VIP room at Moomba. Which was the place to see and be seen in the late 90s. One of my friends was involved in a serious flirtation with Lara Flynn Boyle, which left me sitting across the table from her friend Nicholas Cage.
At the time I was trying to leave my life as a nightclub promoter behind me. I was starting to take writing and acting seriously again for the first time in a decade. I was in mourning and shock of my mother's sudden death. I was muddled, confused and terrified. I was frozen and speechless. Not just in the presence of Cage, whom I had met previously, but in general. The only time I had anything to say was when I was in Atlantic City, where I spent two or three days gambling every week of that year.
What was I supposed to say to Nick Cage that night? I'm only here because I'm a D-list personality in NYC? Back when I was young and skinny people used ot msitake me for you all the time? Do you remember the night you tried to seduce Lorna the cocktail waitress at the club I managed in San Francisco by inviting the entire staff to your house in Pacific Heights for an after hours party? Let me tell you about the awesome screenplay I'm writing that's seven pages long?
For a long time I felt a certain amount of shame and self-pity that I was in that world and eventually found myself with nothing to say. Believe me, for years I had plenty to say. It was mostly bullshit, but it provided more than a few perqs. In the end however, I was tired of the game and tired of having nothing but money and entry to exclusive parties to show for it.
I respected Nicholas Cage and myself just enough to keep my mouth shut that night. I had something to say, I just didn't trust it at the time. It was this -- When I saw Leaving Las Vegas I was fucking exhilarated by the truth of his performance. He got what being a hope to die drunk is all about. And he won an Oscar for telling the truth.