Fame and Blame
by The Cranky Media Guy
Everybody says the contestants from Survivor are getting
over-exposed. Everyone says those people are wrong to milk
their new-found celebrity. Everyone is full of crap. Who
does everyone think they're fooling?
Come on--if you were a long haul truck driver and you suddenly
got the chance to make big money for "work" that doesn't
involve endless ass-numbing hours on the Interstate or any heavy
lifting, wouldn't you take it? If not, why not?
What the hell's wrong with you?
Seriously, I can't figure out the backlash against the Survivor
folks, except to suspect that it's envy. Haven't they fallen
head-first into the American dream?--great, steaming heaps of moolah
for just being yourself. I defy you to look me in the eye and
tell me with a straight face that you wouldn't be wearing that
stupid milk mustache if there was a big-ass check waiting for you.
OK, so they're enjoying their fifteen minutes of fame. So
what? This too shall pass. A year from now, there'll be
some other bunch of numbnuts getting all the airtime and
attention. The simple fact is that if the public wasn't
interested in these people, no one would be paying them to do
squat. Other than the fact that they were on that little
island with the dopey road company-of-South Pacific sets, no
one would care about them. Because they were, though,
for the moment, the public is fascinated with them. Let 'em
cash in, I say. Who does it hurt?
Is the whole thing stupid? Yup, but it isn't illegal,
immoral or fattening. Be honest with yourself for a moment:
down deep, don't you wish that you could have just one moment
in the sun like they're enjoying? Don't you wish that you
could be in the running for a million bucks and some side
endorsement deals? I do.
In the past, I've done more than a few things that have gotten
national attention. It was fun. I didn't make a lot of
money from my adventures; it would have been even more fun if
I had. Maybe having had a little taste of publicity a few
times is why I'm not mad at the Survivor people for getting
in the game. Except for the money part, I've kind of been
there. Trust me, it's a rush.
Hey, rather than envy the Suvivors for cashing in, use them as an
example. Despite all the cliches about hard work being its own
reward, we all know that the world of work sucks. Come up with
your own gimmick. Being "stranded" on an island
that's about as deserted as Trader Vic's isn't the only way to get
attention. Figure out something that will grab people's
attention and get in on the Fame Game. You won't get on Entertainment
Tonight by working on the loading dock, Bub. I know, I've
been on it.
Fair warning, though: If you decide to walk the path of
Fame, we may cross paths. I'll be the guy jostling for
position, trying to knock you out of the way of the cameras.
This time, I'm going for the gold.