Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Fame Isn't For Everybody

Some people do not want to be rich and famous. Only rich. And they are wise. Fame isn't for everybody. The thing is, though: with certain kinds of fame, you get lots of free stuff.

If you're a famous writer, or Oprah Winfrey or Bill Clinton, publishers are dying to have you say something about one of their books, so they send you free advance copies of all of them. If paparazzi photos of you appear everywhere, you get free T-shirts and watches and sunglasses and shoes and pants and hats and gloves and socks and shoes and belts and swimwear, because the manufacturers are dying to have their products seen round the world being worn by your fabulous self. You repeatedly hear the phrase: "Your money's no good here, Sir or Madam" at restaurants and hotels, because the chance that you'll be seen there is worth much more to them than the bill. You have to worry much less about reservations than most people do, for the same reason.

It depends how you got famous, to some extent. If you're rich and famous because you won a Powerball jackpot and you made no request for privacy, you probably get offered much less free stuff than if you're Bruce Willis or the Pope. I'm not sure what effect there would be if Bruce Willis let it be known than he wanted less free stuff -- or more.

The amount of free stuff a famous person gets no doubt rises and falls no matter how he or she reacts to it. If a celebrity is sad because he or she is no longer the "flavor of the month," I suspect one thing he or she may be sad about is being offered less free stuff.

Early on in the series "Just Shoot Me!" the character played by Laura San Giacomo was a brand-new member of the fashion industry because her Daddy had given her a job writing at the magazine he owned and operated. Because of her new job, and the newly-won influence which came with it, she got some free stuff, including some boots which she loved. But she gave all of the free stuff back because of her "integrity."

I never liked that episode or the message it was sending. Where do I even start? Did she give back the job her Daddy gave her? No! Did she offer to change positions and work her way up from the mailroom or wherever entry-level was at the magazine? No again! Never offered her office back to the guy who got summarily thrown out of it to make room for Daddy's girl...

Anyway. I kept watching the show. I think Laura San Giacomo is really great. And my point is that I'm pretty sure I could receive lots and lots of free stuff and retain my integrity. And if not: I'd still have a lot of free stuff, and, maybe in part because my Daddy never owned and operated a big magazine, I'd like to think I'd still appreciate the free stuff, and never forget about all the people who've never gotten a free Rolex watch or a free pair of really exceptional shoes, and even give some of my free stuff away to people who needed it more because they were neither rich nor famous.

And isn't that what it's all about, really? And isn't that a great message for the kids? Is anyone thinking of the children, here?!

In conclusion, I really, really, really, really want lots and lots of that sweet, sweet, swag. Thank you, and God bless you, and God bless the United States of America!

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