Fox News recently ran a story about actor Geoffrey Owens who was “spotted bagging groceries” at a Trader Joe’s in New Jersey. Fox accompanied their story with an unflattering picture of Geoffrey wearing his TJ’s T and nametag, juxtaposed beside a picture of him in his bougie Elvin Tibideaux days, as if to emphasize how far he has fallen. The story got a lot of play over the Labor Day weekend, but not in the way Fox probably intended. Fox may be a snooty pack of job snobs, but most of Geoffrey’s fellow actors are not. They supported him in droves, pointing out the obvious: Actors have day jobs, big whoop. This morning, Geoffrey appeared on Good Morning America to talk about his experience, first being shamed, then being heralded as a working class hero.
Here’s the Fox News story that started it all.
'Cosby Show' actor Geoffrey Owens spotted bagging groceries at NJ Trader Joe's https://t.co/bhkxWYa9gq
— Fox News (@FoxNews) August 31, 2018
Fox News is really reaching to find news stories that won’t anger their number #1 fan. They are probably avoiding any new items that mention Russia, The FBI, lawyers, popularity polls, John McCain, women, white criminals or the color orange. So, the well is pretty dry. Shaming an actor for bagging groceries (everyone knows that all the cashiers bag at TJ’s, they knew what they were doing) is pretty low. Thankfully it backfired because what you’re not going to do, is shame a man for having a J.O.B. (incidentally, this makes Geoffrey eligible to get with me).
Here are some of the messages of support Geoffrey received via Twitter.
— terrycrews (@terrycrews) September 2, 2018
#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
This #LaborDay, we honor #geoffreyowens and ALL of the hard-working actors who work 1, 2, 3 day jobs in order to pay the bills, take care of their families & still work to entertain us. #ActorsWithDayJobs, share yours loud and proud! We’re here for you! https://t.co/9ZGmrefHeK
— SAG-AFTRA Foundation (@sagaftraFOUND) September 3, 2018
On GMA, Geoffrey says he was ”really devastated” at first, but once he realized most everybody was on team Bitch Everybody Got To Work, he felt differently. (via People):
“The period of devastation was so short because so shortly after that, the responses, my wife and I started to read [them] … and fortunately the shame part didn’t last very long,” he said. “It’s amazing.”
Geoffrey said he’s been working in that TJ’s for about 15 months and that he does get recognized on occasion but people are usually cool about it. He’s been trying to be low-key about it as well, because he is still acting and didn’t want to signal that he’d retired from showbiz all together. He’s since quit though because of the excessive publicity.
Here’s Geoffrey’s interview.
FULL INTERVIEW: @GMA EXCLUSIVE — "There's no job better than another…every job is worthwhile…" Actor Geoffrey Owens speaks out, responding to job shaming and backlash after a photo of him working at a grocery store was posted online: https://t.co/0wZJnpowI9 pic.twitter.com/aNiG5fV2yf
— Good Morning America (@GMA) September 4, 2018
As ghost Huxtable daughter Sondra’s boyfriend (try to remember what she looks like, I dare you!), Geoffrey was already on the receiving end of one of the most memorable reads in TV history delivered by Phylicia Rashad, so you better believe Geoffrey can withstand anything Fox News might throw in his face.
Ignore the sentient shit stain that opens the door and oozes around the edges of the scene.