In Central Jersey there's a caterer showing photographs of a living legend who stopped and said hello. There beneath the blue suburban skies of Metuchen, John Manzo ran into a rock and roller who's way beyond compare.
Manzo, who owns and operates his own catering company, said he was on the phone with a friend while driving in his Jeep Sunday afternoon when he spotted Paul McCartney in front of a local bakery.
Had it been another day, he might have looked the other way.
"It happened really, really quick. He was running around taking pictures," Manzo told NJ 1015 (WKXW).
"What the f*** are you doing in Metuchen?" he said he asked him. "He told me he was there because his wife was in the area.... We talked for a couple of seconds and he was out -- I went back to work."
McCarney's wife, Nancy Shevell, grew up in bordering Edison and was graduated from J.P. Stevens High School.
The 77-year-old world-renowned Beatle has made New Jersey his local stomping grounds since meeting Shevell, whose family lives in the swanky Jersey Shore town of Deal.
He sang "I Saw Her Standing There" at the Hudson House in Jersey City this past November during a party for his wife's company, New England Motor Freight party. McCartney was also spotted having dinner with the Shevell family at Jimmy’s Italian Restaurant in Asbury Park in 2017.
Manzo is something of a musician himself, having played in a band that includes Beatles tunes in its repertoire while playing gigs at the legendary Stone Pony and Fast Lane in Asbury Park, among other venues.
On Sunday -- a few days before what would have been George Harrison's 77th birthday -- he felt good in a special way .
It "would have been epic" if he'd gotten a cellphone photo of McCartney crossing the street in front of him, a la "Abbey Road" (perhaps the most famous crosswalk in the world), Manzo said, but he wasn't quick enough on the draw, Manzo said.
The encounter nonetheless was guaranteed to raise a smile.
"I said, 'You're awesome'," Manzo recalled. "And he said, 'No, you're awesome -- and he was gone."
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