I will never, ever, ever be broadcast all over the world. I have yet to attain any notoriety for my many underworld schemes, so I think I shall continue enjoying my anonymity.
The closest I got to being on national television was American Idol. One of the contestants (Blake Lewis, season 6) went to high school with me. He was a junior when I was a senior and we were in the same drama group. He acted and sang; I grabbed duct tape and moved props. I watched with some interest as he made it through the final rounds, rather amused that this fellow from a small town was making out so well.
Now, imagine how upset you would be if you had an acquaintance like that and the world rooted for them to suffer. Imagine if it was you; that your relationships were always under careful scrutiny. That alone is plenty of reason for me to never want to be famous.
I like Jennifer Garner. She seems like a pleasant person off screen, and she was pretty great in Alias and 13 Going on 30. I root for her. She had already been divorced once, so I was hoping that she and Ben Affleck would have a nice go of it. Sadly, they announced they were separating a while ago. Days after, someone I knew was celebrating their divorce. They were excited to see them break up because they did not like Ben Affleck.
First off, did not like them as what? An actor? Then do not watch his movies. Did not like him as a person? Well, I can see how you were offended at the way he treated you back when he never met you. Sigh. If you do not like what he puts forth as a profession, then avoid those products. To judge a person in their personal life because you do not like how they skillful they are at being famous, that bothers me.
Another Jennifer, and probably the first I had a crush on, is Jennifer Aniston. She amuses, is attractive, and appears to give generously. Why would I not want that sort of person to be successful? (She has made one or two decent movies. Really.) I maintain that she would have a lower search-engine status if she had not gone through the whole Brad Pitt/ Angeline Jolie ordeal. I took little pleasure in watching Mr. & Mrs. Smith (and not soley because I think the movie is rather bland).
People took stances and far too much media attention was devoted to the whole thing and I cannot say that I cared for any of it. I rooted for Jennifer Aniston. I wanted for her to be happy. And to this day, I still want her to be content. I do not really know who her new husband is, and I really do not need to. It is none of my business. But I like to think that this person who entertained me over ten seasons of Friends has found someone to love.
I am bothered by people that want to bring others down from their ivory towers. If you are famous enough to have your face on newspapers and magazines, then you are famous enough to have people constantly asking you for favors, trying to take your photo, or trying to steal your information. I think that is a high enough price. We do not need to cheer for their downfall on top of that. It is just mean.
Am I pen pals with Donald Trump? Nope. Do I want him to get hit by a truck or get divorced again? No. I have worked to not hate anyone in life. It takes up too much energy. I prefer to disagree and let it go. Live and let live.
Not coincidentally, the common thread in all three of those famous people is divorce. They have had one, if not two or more, marriages fall apart. For me, divorce is pretty much right below rape or torture. It is one of those things in life that I honestly do not know how I would come out the other side of. I have always planned to date someone for at least a year and then be engaged for at least a year before marriage (and that is the minimum. More time would certainly be wise). Marriage is important to me.
The sadness of divorce is a little stronger for me with Jennifer Garner. She has kids. Growing up with famous parents has to be unsettling enough, but to have a divorce shake things up even more? And have folks around trying to photograph it before and after? Blech.
One almost wonders if, for all those people “called together to bear witness to this blessed occasion” on the day of the wedding, there is not another group of people right outside crossing their fingers and aching for failure.
Death played out for the public to consume is even more tragic. Take Glee for instance. Imagine two of the main actors are dating. They have a plotted relationship on-screen and a happy romance off-screen. Between seasons, one of them dies. So now the woman has to go back to the show, still grieving, and portray a grieving television persona. Go home and cry your eyes out. Go to work and cry your eyes out. You are on a media-budget, so there is no time to go home and bury yourself under the bed sheets. You have to keep working. Oh, but hey, could you show a little less emotion this time? Thanks. Not for the world would I choose that.
Perhaps that is why the See You Again video has gotten a billion hits in less than a year. Over seven movies the stars formed something of a family. (The song even states, “How can we not talk about family/ when family’s all that we got.”) The Fast and Furious franchise has flaws. Still, I am not about to be excited when someone dies and people have to keep working on the project. Plus, come on, that scene of the car driving off down the sunset path? Beautiful and fitting. Pretty classy for a tight t-shirt, car exploding, women-exploiting action flick. Kudos. (On those last five minutes, that is. The rest of the movie was nothing to write home about.)
I wish that everyone, not just celebrities, gets the kind of life that makes them whole. Maybe they want nothing more than a marriage. Maybe they are more excited than I will ever be to accept a big award. Maybe they want to travel the world. If that is what they are supposed to do with their lives, then let us cheer for that, not for their misery.
(I hope you liked the bloopers. Gotta add levity to the topic somehow, right?)