Fame! They're Gonna Live Forever!

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Lil Kim rapped "Money, Power, Respect what you need in life..." And it seems that today's cult of personality lives by that mantra. I was reading the Science section of the New York Times this morning where Times journalist, Benedict Carey, sought to decipher people’s sudden need... the fervid obsession to be famous. It’s almost as if people have this intense desire to be accepted and liked by the public... mere strangers who could care less one way or the other. I will be the first to admit, that I have a weird love/hate relationship with pop-culture. While I think the behavior being put on display is quite disgusting and sad, I am also enthralled and flummoxed by it. It’s akin to walking down the street, and rubber-necking at a couple groping and fondling one another in public or having a loud, obscenity laced argument. You’re at once appalled yet fascinated by the exhibitionism. Currently, hotel Heiress, Paris Hilton leads the flock of sheep clamoring for attention and notoriety. Recently voted, "Most Overrated Person" in this year’s Guinness Book of World Records Hilton would, undoubtedly, wear this categorization of her like a badge of honor... for her name is immortalized in the annals of that book’s history. She is the type of personality who probably believes that any publicity is good publicity. During a guerrilla-esque interview with a TMZ.com journalist, Paris seemed confused (and disturbed) by message board commenters, posting caustic things- (Such as: "Paris is like a fart in a mitten, you know it’s there, and it just wont go away" and "Paris is an oversized, human condom")- about her on the TMZ message board. She says the criticism hurts her feelings, and she doesn't understand why people would say such things about her. While the comments are harsh, Parish (pardon moi) Paris, should accept some responsibility for the reasons why people are so critical of her. Girl makes it a point to be at all places at all times, so that we just can’t help but see her. She has branded herself and made herself a household name. Someone of us don't want to know who she is, but her seemingly narcissistic personality and constant need to be on display, has made it impossible to ignore her. While the media’s fascination with Ms. Hilton shares some of the blame, those of us who could care less, are having her shoved down our throats. Enough, already. While Paris seems to be the ringleader in the desperate bid for celebrity, she certainly isn’t the only one. Celebrities (particularly those with dwindling careers) are suddenly having their sexual exploits leaked onto the internet. While many of them seem genuinely chagrined by having their past lascivious behavior broadcast to the world, just as many of them have people choreographing such bold career moves, such as their sex-tapes allegedly being stolen and posted on the internet. I think many of these "sex-tape" celebrities know exactly what they’re doing. It’s not enough to re-acquire that glory via the traditional movie/stage-role of a lifetime. Now we have to watch them frolicking with some unidentified lover, on a grainy sex-video. The article goes on to say that Psychologists are trying to get to the root of what prompts people to seek infamy, fame, and/or notoriety above any other goal in life. "...the motive never dies, and when we realize we’re not going to make it in this lifetime, we find some other route: posthumous fame" says psychologist Orville Gilbert Brim, who is working to complete the book "The Fame Motive." Tim Kasser, also a psychologist opined, "It’s a distinct type, people who expect to get meaning out of fame, who believe the only way to have their lives makes sense is to be famous." It’s seemingly not enough to find meaning in the those little, but significant things... family, merit, friends, an Oscar, a Grammy, a Nobel Peace Prize, a Pulitizer award, sheer INTELLECT. Even supposed intellectuals and artists desire some measure of immediate fame... i.e. fallen authors James Frey and Harvard undergraduate Kaavya Viswanathan (who plagiarized another author’s work, for much of her own). We live in a culture now, where acting visibly moronic and stupid is celebrated and being shot 9 times qualifies you as being an outstanding rapper before an album has even been dropped! Even bloggers are getting in on the frenzy to be popular, famous, and well-liked... saturating the internet with recycled celebrity gossip blogs, complete with their own signature and snarky (and at times scathing) brand of catty tabloid-journalism (and I use the term journalism loosely). No star-f*cking blogger demonstrates the need to be accepted more than Paris Hilton shadow, Mario Lavandeira...who re-christened himself Perez Hilton. A simple (and not a particularly witty or articulate) blogger who does nothing more than re-deliver celebrity gossip we’ve read or seen on TV a thousand times, posts pics of himself mugging with the very celebs he once trashed, name drops like no-one's business, and calls the likes of Mariah Carey and Janet Jackson, fat and ugly (notwithstanding his own corpulent and misshapen hulk of a body). Perez (who has insinuated himself into the celebrity haute-clique, socializes with the Queen Bee herself) is now a celebrity gossip correspondent featured on VH1 and E! respectively ... and he is rumored brokered some sort of deal for his own reality show... go figure. Andy Warhol determined that everyone is entitled at least 15 minutes of fame, but this is ridiculous! A lifetime seems to be what the untalented and desperate are striving for. I think Benedict hit the nail on the head when he also wrote: "Celebrity is the ultimate high school in-group, writ large. It appears a perfect balm for the sting of social exclusion or neglect..." And on that note, I’d like to leave you all with this delightful clip from the creme de la creme of wanna-bitches and the neglected... Flavor of Love Season 2... That’s it.

5 comments

  1. Thanks for the video and enlightment about celebrity.

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  2. I can't watch America's Got Talent. I just get embarrassed when I see the people trying to make it on stage just by being stupid and having no talent what so ever. There was a woman who was playing a harp and singing quite beautifully and people were booing at her! I wanted to watch the rest but judges (well they call them judges, I call them has-beens) cut her off and told her this was not the show for her, when she clearly had talent! I guess no one is interested in classical music anymore. Anyways, its bullshit..I never want to be famous (maybe when I was a kid I did), I rather be rich! Or at least financially comfortable...

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  3. The recent "look at me, look at me" epidemic is making me sick. Especially Hilton cause she's rich already. If you can have the money without the fame you gotta roll with it. The other one that makes me sick is (and I hate saying this name) Superhead. She's trying to sue Mr. Marcus over a porn they made that he is now selling. I'm not a big porn guy, but I saw that and frankly it ain't no grainy, night vision, let's play around tape. That's the other part the trips me out, these famous people suing others for things they took part in.

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  4. I could not have said it better myself. I think I blogged about this topic before(?), but in no way was I able to articulate my feelings as well as you.Good job

    I'm so sick of Paris, although I must say her abulm is not bad, but there is no way she can really sing this WELL in person (I give her a 5)She is another Cassie.

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  5. we've all become "media puppies", obsessed with the public's perception of our empty lives.

    you know the strangest thing is when you get people refer to themselves in the third person.

    "so jennifer when is your album out?"
    "oh jennifer is busy this minute so we're aiming for a fall release"

    suddenly she thinks herself an institution. "jennifer", "we". pathetic!!

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