Damien on… The Price Of Fame
It’s been a bad time for celebrities, of late.
First, the American Injustice System FINALLY started nailing the more dangerous ones. O.J., Spector – Martha.
And now, they’re dropping like flies. Michael Jackson (THAT one will run and run) Farrah Fawcett (at least those “tap” jokes will stop now) and Mollie Sugden – all fell off the twig during the past week.
Last week was also the forty-eighth anniversary of the birth of Princess Diana. Diana was another celeb whose passing affected the public – but in her case, the fame was of Elvisian proportions (that’s another one the Spellchecker will hate).
Diana was called “The People’s Princess” – like Charlie had met her in Waitrose. BULL! She was POSH! Her Dad was a Viscount, for gawdsake.
The simple truth is – Diana was a Sloan who got out of her depth. Her main misreckoning was her belief she could “modernise” the British Royal Family. “The Firm”, as it’s known to insiders, is firmly entrenched in the Thirties and she could no sooner have done that than survive a 112 m.p.h. crash into a concrete post, whilst not wearing a seatbelt.
No. Although Diana was only fifteen years younger than the Windsor Wingnut, they were more like THIRTY years apart in spirit. Whilst she listened to Wham tapes on her Walkman, Charlie was playing Goon records on his gramophone.
Thus, the divide became a CHASM. Eventually it drove Diana potty. Stories of her attempts to win the public’s sympathy as a “victim” abounded. Like the one where a pap claims she did a strip for him, knowing he had a long lens on her. The stunt backfired when his pictures were bought and suppressed.
Then there was the time she (allegedly) slashed her wrists on the Royal Plane and smeared them all over the walls. Freaked Charlie out, that one.
But her death begat even stranger stories. You’re probably sick of hearing them. Many were started by a certain very rich person who SUES – so I’ll not name him. Suffice to say his claims seem like the ravings of a grief-stricken old man, but then again – we live in a strange World.
However, as the saying goes – most rumours are true, while most conspiracy theories are complete bollocks. It seems likely that Diana’s passing was merely caused by a miscalculation on the part of a chauffeur – and her over-estimation of the strength of Mercs.
Of course, tragedy can strike at anybody. Stupidity, criminal acts and bad luck are not exclusive to celebrities. It’s just that the public don’t CARE when these things are visited on nobodys. But when they happen to those the media have chosen as their subjects, we allow ourselves to be drawn in.
Even THIS writer was deeply saddened by the senseless slaughter of John Lennon. Unlike lesser men, John shunned having a “security net” – knowing that a prison designed to keep people OUT is no less invasive than one designed to keep them IN.
Thus John was approachable. And in a country where ordinary folk can obtain firearms, this proved to be his undoing – and just as he had got his sh*t together, too.
Ultimately, the problem is a hundred years ago, even a President could walk anywhere unrecognised – and in as much safety as anyone else. Then along came the media. And suddenly, a person’s face could be made familiar to millions – even BILLIONS of people.
Imagine knowing that a billion people know what you look like. No-one can please EVERYONE. And even if 99% of the public like you and only one person in a million is a homicidal maniac – that still means there are ten people out there who want to KILL you.
I’m glad I’m not famous…