When I ran into Lady Gaga, I have to admit I was happy for spending more than a few hours figuring out what to wear that morning. She’s been dressing down these days and even turns dressing down into an art form.

Gaga effortlessly lets her fashion flag fly, the only constant is that of surprise. Her jet black hair took my breath away when we literally bumped into each other in my favorite cafe. I had a glass of wine in one hand and a scone in another. The wine dripped onto my pants and the scone fell to the floor. We both laughed then took a seat with me a bit stunned, by her in vintage Valentino boots and me, in an unbranded shoe.

What do you ask Lady Gaga during a surprise wine break? Easy. We talked about men.

I tried not to gush, but, well. I did. “I loved A Star is Born.” I said, feeling uncharacteristically self-conscious.

“Thank you so much,” she said as she pulled a new pair of jeans out of one of her shopping bags. She tried handing them to me. But, I waved her off.

“No, I couldn’t possibly.”

She smiled and nodded. “Please, I feel awful…” she said.

“It was an accident,” I assured her. “Besides, just a few stains,” I said, brushing my pants. “But you could tell me something that’s been on my mind since I saw you and Bradley Cooper on the Oscars singing Shallow, the title track from the movie?”

“Sure,” she said, as the barista sat two new glasses of wine down on the table for us.

“Thank you,” I said.

Just then, one of her body guards opened the door to the cafe and peeked in to see if she needed anything. She thanked them with a wink and a nod. She was fine, she said.

“Can you tell me what was up with holding Bradley Cooper’s hand over his girlfriend’s lap? I actually felt sorry for her. There is so much electricity between you and Bradley.”

“The chemistry between us is undeniable, but Bradley and Irina are solid, they had a baby while Bradley and I had our baby in the making of A Star Is Born. I wouldn’t have been cast in the movie without Bradley believing in me. And that belief is better than sex. It transcends any kind of relationship you could ever put a label on.”

“I’ve felt that way too. There are some relationships that surpass what society has labels for. I am curious. What is your philosophy of life?”

She smiled and laughed, then stared at me straight in the eyes. “Love. That’s an easy question.

It’s always been love and always will be about love.”

“You mean the kind that you and Bradley share?”

“More than that. Love is everything. But most of all, it’s about inclusion and not closing the door on any philosophy or group. It’s about staying open to life so we can stay open to all the parts of ourselves and others. The parts we like, and the parts we don’t like. The parts in us that are little monsters.”

“You know it’s hard to be ourselves right now with all the pressures of fitting in. What do you say to your fans who have been bullied or marginalized? To people who feel like they don’t matter? What would you say to your critics? People who’ve called you fake and sensationalistic?”

“They don’t matter.” She smiled and downed her last bit of white wine.

“I don’t let them have any power over me. I don’t create for them. I create for my monsters,” she said. Her body guards motioned to her that it was time to go through the glass door.

And with that, she gave me a hug.

“Do you mind?” I took out my cell phone and shrugged.

“Not at all,” she smiled at one of her strapping body guards who immediately obliged.

I sipped the last of my wine as he snapped photos of us.

Afterwards, we said our goodbyes and I watched her entourage climb into a black Mercedes outside.

Just then, she unexpectedly opened the door just enough to slip inside and toss a DVD of A Star is Born my way. I instantly caught it and smiled. Our eyes met one last time before she turned to leave again. I watched her jump into the waiting car.

I flipped the DVD over in my hand. She had signed it saying, “Are you happy in this modern world?”

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