Question: I heard a rumor that you got the shock of your life when you returned to New York from Detroit. True? Angel Cohn
Ausiello: I don't usually respond to questions posed by my TV Guide colleagues, but I guess I can make an exception in this case since, well, I kinda begged Angel to submit it. Yes, it's true! I had quite a surprise waiting for me in the lobby of my Manhattan apartment building Thursday afternoon. There, before my very eyes, was Mariska Freakin' Hargitay! In an unbelievable coincidence, Law & Order: SVU was taping scenes for its Feb. 15 episode, "Hooked," on my turf! I. Kid. You. Not. Despite that pesky restraining order (which I'm pretty sure has expired), I marched right up to Mar and here's what came next.
Me: Mariska! It's Mike Ausiello from TV Guide. (Please let her remember me from the Emmys.)
Mariska: (Turns around, waving a pistol in her hand) Hey! What are you doing here?
Me: I live here!
Mariska: You're kidding!
Me: Nope. I live on the 10th floor.
Mariska: That's crazy. How are you? (She notices the gun in her hand.) Look at me waving a gun in your face.
Me: I'm not stalking you I swear. (Nervous laughter) Hey, I was the one who called your publicist earlier this week about those pregnancy rumors.
Mariska: That was you?
Mariska: (Sighs) It's not true. I wish it were, but it's not. In fact, between you, me and the lamppost, I [Censored for privacy issues... Censored for privacy issues... Censored for privacy issues... Censored for privacy issues]. But that's just between us.
Me: Good luck with that. I'll keep my fingers crossed. (Should I invite her up to my apartment? Did I remember to put the Smurfs away?) Well, I'll let you get back to work.
Mariska: You live here. Wow.
Me: I know. Crazy. Take care! (I enter the elevator and begin replaying the whole thing over in my head to make sure I didn't come off as a psycho.)