Shine is a term I learned in Hollywood last year, probably from one of the ever present celebrity news shows in L.A.  It basically means what people get when they rub up against the stars.  Writing about it is a little strange because I sound like I’m dropping names myself, which is not my intention.  I was reminded of the meaning of Shine today when an actor friend was telling another friend about his first trip to an autograph show.  People lined up for two hours to get his autograph, a new thing for someone who has been a serious actor for almost 50 years and suddenly finds himself in the middle of a popular show.  He’s old enough to get a kick out of it, even though he is amazed by it.

I’ve met many famous people through the years, famous for everything from sports to acting to art, cooking, politics, music, whatever.  It’s fun to see them in person, and, yes, some of them are larger than life, but I’m always amazed at the reaction of everyone around them, including myself sometimes.  I’m not a big autograph person, although I do have some autographed books.  I usually have authors sign their name rather than signing it to me, which seems so awkward since I don’t really know them.  There were a couple of exceptions with chefs I worked with for several months.  I’m also not one for jumping into pictures with the stars, even though I love pictures.  I do have a picture of me with Dorothy Hamill, taken years ago.  She was sitting on my desk at work, waiting to perform, and I got a picture mainly because I had worn her hair style for years.  I don’t remember any other photos of me with anyone.  I think I had an autographed picture of Hopalong Cassidy when I was a little girl and met him at a horse show.  It also comes from not wanting to bother them while they are trying to be normal people, which is where I usually meet people of fame.

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This isn’t to say I don’t understand all of this.  I have tons of pictures of people and it’s fun to see fans line up for someone.  I love that the “stars” get to meet their fans and feel appreciated, which probably makes the star shine even more.  I’m reading yet another book about Joan of Arc, who was a superstar in her time.  Even her opponents described the glow that came from within her.  If all is true, her shine came from her sacred mission and her purity, although she was as human as the rest of us with her bad temper and stubborn ways.

The “stars” we think of are normal people doing their job, some enormously talented in their field, and a few who are just good people.  I’m not going to become a star by meeting famous people or hanging around with them.  The reason I’m writing about Shine is to remind myself that I should be getting my Shine from rubbing up against people who are caring and loving and making a difference in the world.  These people are all around us.  We don’t ask them for autographs or have our picture made with them.  They don’t get a concrete star in Hollywood or their name in lights or get mentioned on television every day.  I want to shine because I’ve surrounded myself with family and friends who make me better for knowing them.

I do love the term Shine though.  It’ll be around as long as there are stars in the sky!