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The celebrity-spotting stakes have reached new heights.

Jeffrey, a small-time agent who lives in my apartment block, and whose biggest claim to fame is having signed up a Mexican soap star, has never been remiss in keeping up with tales of the Beattys, the Nicholsons or, indeed, the Joneses.

But recently, he has surpassed himself. Kiefer Sutherland, the Young Guns hero, lent him his car. I know the story well, because Jeffrey has relayed it so loudly and so often down his mobile phone on the communal swimming-pool patio outside my window, that probably the rest of LA knows it too.

Jeffrey was dining at Chaya Brasserie, one of the friendlier and less formal restaurants of Beverly Hills, which does a nice line in oriental dishes, and Kiefer happened to be eating there with a male colleague.

After the meal, Jeffrey is waiting for the valet to bring around his own car from the parking lot, when Kiefer rushes out to get a packet of Marlboro Lights from his BMW parked on the pavement alongside.

Taking a long draw on a cigarette before going back into the restaurant, Kiefer begins to chat. Jeffrey can't resist, and before long the pair are discussing the merits of the new BMW.

"This just drives like a dream," enthuses Kiefer. "Its acceleration is just phenomenal. I had them do it up for me especially. You should feel it grip the road. Here, why don't you try it?" And before Jeffrey can even confess to the bottle of wine he has just drunk, Kiefer hands him the keys, pointing out the picture of his daughters attached to the key ring.

"No really, you've got to drive this to believe it. Give it a spin around the block," says Kiefer.

So Jeffrey gets into the car and drives off, leaving Kiefer on the pavement signing autographs and chatting to a few fans who also happened to recognise him.

In spite of whatever embellishments Jeffrey likes to add to the tale, the valet parker at the restaurant tells me (because I had to check!) that Jeffrey did not leave the movie star standing there waiting for an hour, and he really did only drive the car around the block.

The valet also tells me that Kiefer Sutherland, who often eats there, is known always to be happy to chat to strangers, is always generous with the tips - and is always the perfect gentleman.

If only the same could be said of Jeffrey.

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