You shouldn’t pay homage to Ellen Grossman for successfully striking up a conversation with Jay-Z without having 100,000 volts of electricity from a stun gun rendering her motionless.
You should pay homage to the 67-year-old visual artist because she (probably) smells like oatmeal raisin cookies and a pocket full of sunshine.
New York Magazine – “I was on a fairly sparsely populated subway car, and I was sitting in the corner,” she explained. “At Canal Street, a surge of people got on, and since my son was in the buildings on 9/11, my first reaction was that there had been a disaster upstairs. But everyone was laughing and smiling. My second reaction was, ‘Oh there’s a flash mob.’
“They were filming this one guy that I didn’t recognize, which is why I said, ‘Are you famous?’” she recalled. When he finally said Jay-Z, it clicked. “I thought about R&B … rap, that music, which I listen to occasionally because I want to be in touch.” Her knowledge of hip-hop, though, is dated. “LL Cool … Ice Cube — it’s old stuff.”
Grossman, a Brooklyn native, was shown the film when its producers asked her to sign a waiver. “I loved it! It was very energizing talking to Jay-Z. Just who he is, not having to do with all the cameras, but he really, genuinely spreads an aura of empowerment around him,” she gushed. “And I suspect he was always able to do that even before fame. It’s not just directed at younger people. I picked up that feeling, too.”