Every year on a sunny September day, I doll myself up in an understated way, head down to Yorkville and accidentally bump into George Clooney at the Second Cup.

Overwhelmed by my wit, depth and unusual looks (so different from the women he dates) George immediately falls for me. We play hide-and-seek in Kensington Market, laugh as we eat butter chicken at my favourite Indian restaurant and, well, the rest is history — or, rather, fantasy. As the Toronto International Film Festival hits town every year I enjoy my “George” fantasy. (He loves that we share the same name.)

It’s my secret life with George (what a great movie title!), which I’ve always thought was mine alone until I headed downtown last week and discovered the entire female population of Toronto (and likely the world) harbours the same fantasy and lurks everywhere trying to fulfil it. For instance, when I walked into my optometrist’s office in Yorkville, the receptionist inquired, “Have you seen George Clooney?” My head whipped around. “Why is he out there?”
“No, but I hear he got mobbed eating sushi last night.”

Another patient arrived at the desk. “Oh, you mean George.” As if she was on a first-name basis with him. No sooner than do I feel like my dirty little secret is everyone else’s, too, when a sales clerk informs me a busload of women has swarmed through her store and onto the streets looking for a man with a bandaged hand, which Clooney is apparently sporting.

Women tell me they love everything about him, from his puppy dog eyes to the fact he doesn’t take himself too seriously. I think there’s also that feeling that nabbing George, the über single man, would be an achievement far surpassing being prime minister, winning the lottery or, for me, finding a product that would give my hair volume.

One woman tells me, “I love George because he dates everyone — it doesn’t matter what age.”
“He’s dating women our age now?”

“No — but every other age.”

Which brings me back to reality — that with the passage of time my daughter, 22, is now old enough or young enough to date George. This unfortunate (for me) scenario now has me as George’s mother-in-law and serving him mashed potatoes.

Wait. My new fantasy is George reads this with his morning coffee and picks up the phone ...

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