I was supposed to call Bill Cosby’s publicist around 11 this morning to do a phone interview about his upcoming comedy show in Roanoke. Around 9:30, my co-worker Justin McLeod comes into the morning meeting and says “Hollani, Bill Cosby is on the phone for you.” Justin is a joker so I didn’t take him seriously. Then I thought, oh, it must be his publicist. I answered the phone and wouldn’t you know, it was Mr. Cosby on the other end.
“Davis,” he said. “This is Bill Cosby”.
Turns out he had some free time before our scheduled interview and boy did we chat it up. He is so down to earth it’s ridiculous. (*A caveat here: I don’t really get star struck, but Bill Cosby, come on!) Like most folks out there, I grew up on his shows. He is an icon in the true sense of the word. “Fat Albert”, “I Spy”, “The Cosby Show” and “A Different World” ( a spin-off about collegiate life at a Virginia HBCU and thus my inspiration for moving to Virginia and attending an HBCU).
I reminded Mr. Cosby during our conversation that he was the commencement speaker at my graduation at Hampton University. He didn’t remember me (ha ha) but he remembered his speech and ended our conversation with a “Go Pirates” and a “HELLO” . (You have to be apart of the Blue and White family to get that last part).
Anyhow, I did my best to keep my composure. We went way over our scheduled interview time but he was so gracious about it. Afterall, we are on a last name basis. He’s Mr. Cosby and to him I’m “Davis”.
(Stay tuned. I plan to post more of our conversation this weekend.)