In the glorious days before internet gave everyone a chance of being heard, wanna be stars had to run off to Hollywood to get their chance at fame. This kept the greater LA area stocked with waiters and most of America blessedly free of fame-whore’s. No longer! I feel certain Orange County isn’t suffering from a lack of wait staff but the rest of us are inundated with idiots trying to make their name.
In the past, fame seekers needed to be able to marginally act or have musical talent or be really smoking hot to achieve any real success (Gong Show contestants notwithstanding on any of these points). Now you need a youtube account and a camera.
Recently, I heard of a 13 year old girl who bought a house and rented it out. She’s a landowner. Neat. Attention came calling. Interviews with Ellen and other national outlets slowly convinced her she had something to offer the world. She bought and rented out more houses. Once upon a time, this would be the end of her story as any of us would know it. But this is a bright new age where everyone deserves their own reality show! Turns out there is a reality show development group who will box your life up and resell it to media outlets. This young girl has, of course, gone that route because she was told she was interesting long enough that she believed it and that hers was a story that needed to be told in front of cameras. Every day.
The idea that we can all be famous would probably not shock Andy Warhol but I find it deeply unsettling that kids are evolving to not achieve because it’s what you do to get anywhere, but because you might have a chance at reality tv fame or at least a viral video. I can’t help but feel like we are missing some serious values lessons.
There have been stage parents as long as there have been stages. Mothers and Fathers sure there adorable darling was beautiful and talented and ready for fame and fortune. These people used to be cautionary tales of greed and delusion. Now they’re heroes. Public relations geniuses with surgical enhancements and blinding teeth waiting for the camera to pass over them on the way to their meal ticket, I mean, precious child.
What are we going to do with a nation of narcissists?