This is why we love Geoffrey Owens.
‘The Cosby Show’ actor is not only showing folks there’s no shame in hard work, but is now even turning down gigs (well kinda).
After Fox News tried to put the 57-year-old out of work actor on blast for working at a Trader Joe’s, he’s received an outpour of love and support from everyone on social media including Tyler Perry.
On Tuesday after photos of Owens working the checkout line went viral, Perry took to Twitter and invited the actor to join him on an Oprah Winfrey Network drama he’s shooting, explaining, “I have so much respect for people who hustle between gigs,” and calling it “the measure of a true artist.”
#GeoffreyOwens I’m about to start shootings OWN’s number one drama next week! Come join us!!! I have so much respect for people who hustle between gigs. The measure of a true artist.
— Tyler Perry (@tylerperry) September 4, 2018
Owens responded to Perry’s offer during an interview with Entertainment Tonight and was not as eager as one may think to just take the gig.
“I don’t expect to be offered things,” he insisted. “It would be lovely as one of the results of this, some doors open in terms of giving me the opportunity to audition. That, I would appreciate — always, as all actors do. I don’t necessarily feel comfortable being given things as a result of this.
“I like the idea of, you know, put me in the room with everyone else and see if I’m the right one for the job,” he added.
Owen, who played the part of Elvin Tibideaux on “The Cosby Show” from 1985 to 1992, has worked a variety of small screen parts over the years, in addition to down-time jobs in between.
As for his work at Trader Joe’s, that job has come to an end — and not because he no longer needs the work. It’s just that the spotlight that’s been put on the position — both good and bad — makes it impossible for him to continue.
“I felt like just for my personal sake, my dignity and my emotional well-being, I didn’t want to be in the store while I felt like people might be staking out the place, as they did, actually,” he explained. “People came to the store and they were staking it out and stuff. I didn’t feel like that was going to be good for my spiritual being, so I felt like I needed to, at least temporarily, step out, and I think that was the wise thing to do, actually.”
But even though the job is behind him, he’s still wearing his store badge.
“It’s to not be ashamed of work, but to be proud of whatever you do, you know?” he said of the gesture. “So I deliberately brought it today, and I’m wearing it all day just to make a point that, you know, work is not something to be ashamed of no matter what it is.”
Meanwhile the woman who took Geoffrey Owens‘ photo at Trader Joe’s is full of regret. Surprise, surprise.
In an interview with NJ.com, Karma Lawrence apologized for any pain she caused Owens.
“I don’t know why I snuck a picture,” said Lawrence, 50. “I figured everybody does it. I don’t know what possessed me. I just did it. I didn’t even think about it. I just kind of did it on impulse and it was a bad impulse.”
Lawrence — who said she wasn’t paid for the photos — said she had no idea that they would spark such furor over job-shaming.
“I actually wanted to go up to him and say something, but I thought, you might embarrass him,” she continued. “But then I did something that actually embarrassed him more. I didn’t go with my first instinct, and I should’ve.”
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