If you’ve been on the Internet, you know there’s been renewed interest in Cole Sprouse following his “cringe” appearance on the popular podcast Call Her Daddy on March 7. Now, one woman has taken to TikTok to recount the equally cringeworthy time she met the former Disney child star.
Musician J.Maya (@j.mayamusic), who released her EP Poetic License in 2022, ran into Sprouse at an ice cream shop in 2018.
“I find it kind of funny that Cole Sprouse has been in the news recently, because I feel like I have an incredibly unique perspective to offer on this situation,” she says. “So I’m going to tell you about my interaction with Cole Sprouse in 2018.”
Because she “hadn’t seen Cole Sprouse in years,” J.Maya says she “wasn’t sure if it was him or not” so she did what anybody would do: she Googled him.
“So I took out my phone in what I thought was a private manner, but I was very wrong, and I Googled recent pictures of Cole Sprouse to see if that was actually him,” she says. “Little did I know that Cole Sprouse was behind me, and he took a picture of me Googling him and put it on his Instagram Story, followed by a picture of him reacting to that.”
The situation, according to J.Maya, spiraled from there.
“A little bit of context for this situation about me is that at the time, I was a college student and I had absolutely no social media except for a friends-only Facebook…and when this started to go viral, I had no idea how to handle it,” she says.
“And he looked at me with this like, deadpan look on his face, and he was like, ‘Yeah, I saw you Google me.'”
After recognizing it was him, J.Maya mustered up the courage to ask for a photo.
“I was already so embarrassed by the situation because after I Googled Cole Sprouse, I turned around once I knew it was, in fact, him, and I asked him for a picture and I said, ‘I’m so sorry to bother you but I’m a huge fan,'” she says. “And he looked at me with this like, deadpan look on his face, and he was like, ‘Yeah, I saw you Google me.'”
Despite probably being “the cringiest moment” of her entire life, J.Maya says she told herself “that no one would ever know what happened.” Unfortunately, she was wrong.
“So when I saw this thing start to go viral, I knew I wanted to keep my identity private because I didn’t want to be like, associated with this situation,” she says. “And this is where I messed up, because I had taken a selfie with Cole Sprouse and I posted it on my friends-only Facebook…and one of my ‘friends’ on Facebook, who I actually didn’t know that well…tweeted my full name on Twitter, in like, a viral thread about the situation.”
“…the whole time I was stressed out of my mind.”
As a result, media outlets contacted J.Maya via her college email to let her know they’d be including her name in articles about her Sprouse encounter. J.Maya even agreed to do interviews with some outlets.
“I did a couple of these interviews with the outlets that were reaching out, but the whole time I was stressed out of my mind,” she says. “And for years after the fact, it was brought up in every job interview I ever did, because if you Googled my name that would come up.”
“one time i saw cole sprouse at the airport and i sat at the same charging table as him and he immediately got up and walked away”
In three days of posting, J.Maya‘s video has 1.8 million views. It appears she isn’t the only one who’s had an awkward encounter with the Riverdale star.
“It’d be way funnier if you Googled Dylan Sprouse,” replied one user, referencing Cole’s twin brother.
“I’m so mad he posted that to his instagram, huge red flag,” another said.
“one time i saw cole sprouse at the airport and i sat at the same charging table as him and he immediately got up and walked away,” someone replied.
J.Maya isn’t the first person to Google a celebrity prior to approaching them in public — and she certainly won’t be the last. Here’s to hoping her future encounters with Hollywood’s elite are less awkward.
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