The Canadian Writers' Collective

Writing, and writerly tangents

Thursday, April 26, 2007

American Idols

By Antonios Maltezos

Watching them singing last night, I couldn’t help thinking how these young people have been transformed over the course of the season. They’re smoother now than in the beginning, all six of them, even the guy who looks like Nosferatu. Marvelous! Good for them! We love our celebrities! We want them rich and famous -- so rich they eventually forget what it was like getting gasoline for the car (the hullabaloo begins so suddenly for these celebrities, all they know is a driver showed up one day in a limousine), or having to go to the kitchen to answer the phone, or eyeballing the roll of toilet paper, wondering how many squares before the glue begins. We love our celebrities. And if we’re lucky, and we spot one of them, we stare. We stare so much, they have to start moving around with an entourage. And you won’t find them in the snow. If a celebrity bundles up against the bitter cold, wearing a thick woolen scarf, and a toque pulled down to the eyebrows, a heavy, upturned collar, the I’m keeping my head warm look, is it really a celebrity? Hot spot ski slopes don’t count. If you want to stare at the famous, you have to go south where it’s warm. They’re all down there… because we love to stare, keeping them safe by keeping them paranoid, surrounded by personnel, the best and most exclusive real-estate, so they don’t have to worry about much anymore, like looking both ways before crossing the street, or getting ripped-off by the supermarket cashier. They certainly don’t have to worry about sending their children off to school, or getting hit by a car while crossing the street. Do they? They shouldn’t. They’re celebrities, and they have body guards, publicists, agents, the cleaning staff, gardeners, a dozen paparazzi, millions of people who are interested in what’s new with them. Things have changed for them, now, is all I’m saying. They're becoming American Idols, truly, just like Celine. Good for them!


Blogger Tricia Dower said...

Good for them in one way, but in another sense they become prisoners of their fame, don't they? You're right that we love to stare and help create the celebrity that takes them away from us.

Thu Apr 26, 01:43:00 pm GMT-4  

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