Thursday, September 28, 2006

A week without Celebrities

It would be a fine Holiday gift if print, broadcast and internet media gave us a week without celebrity "news" or gossip and give us a chance to consider lives of less mythical proportions.

After all is said and done, someone like Jennifer Aniston is no more interesting than the bowl of cereal that sits in front of you each morning. Probably less so. But given the way this obsession with the increasingly banal coverage of the famed and moneyed, are we that far from stalking celebrities should paparazzi chance upon JoLo tying a shoe, or Matt Damon being told by counter help that the CD he wants is out of stock and then foaming, fuming and gasping at the impossibly demanding pressures celebrities have heaped upon their special lives? The possibility of seeing or reading about the over-renowned having tantrums , among other things, gives us the thrill of seeing ourselves as others would see us if we were given to
having breakdowns in ridiculously public places. I might guess that it assures us
the melt down and other egocentricities are okay after all. The inner child never takes the afternoon nap.

Why is it that we anguish collectively over whether Robert Downy is able to revive his film career and forget our personal obligations as citizens by failing to show to vote in elections, or offer our services to projects in our community that can really improve the lives of others. It comes down to selling papers, of course, but the level to which our obsession with celebrity has advanced suggest a religious intensity, a love of icons and their status among the heavens, which is precisely what corporate powers want us to become, passive investors in entertainment and distractions to keep their means of production running and in their firm control and to forgot about how to change the reality that confines us in grim and grey banality.

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