Growing up famous can't be easy. It's painful enough just watching from afar. (Remember Linda Blair? Rick Schroeder? That kid who played Oliver on The Brady Bunch?) The teen years are awkward enough without millions of hungry fans leering as you trudge through adolescence, hormone imbalances, dating, and the inevitable early onset of alcoholism and drug dependency. (We're still here for you Lindsay. Call us. We're listed.)
What's worse, since so much of Hollywood revolves around good looks, very few young stars make navigate the rocky, pockmarked, genetically predetermined road that runs from Child Star Village to Respectable Adult Performer Town. For every Drew Barrymore or Ricky Martin, there are hundreds of Dana Platos heading down the stony end. Frankly, we'd written off Patrick Dempsey as one of the latter around the time Meatballs III hit the VHS bins, and until Gray's Anatomy made him tabloid fodder, we'd kinda forgotten he was alive. In fact, it's still a little weird to see him staring out at us from the checkout lines at the grocery store. But in fairness, we're pretty easily weirded out.
That said, we have to give total respect to the Dempster, who's taken to middle age like a mature duck to still water. A good husband, a good father, no botox (that we can tell): many in LA could take notes. What's more, he's a passionate cancer activist and a devoted gearhead. We've clocked him making laps at the Rolex Series Grand Prix of Miami, and now we see him caring for his own ride, a very snazzy Porsche 911 GT3. We could probably do without the neon orange spoiler, and yeah, the whole Porsche thing brings up the issue of "compensation" (cf. John Mayer) -- but hey, any guy who puts air in his own tires while wearing a sport coat and proper shoes in the land of tank tops and flip-flips is aces in our book.