It recently came to my attention that despite being quite well read - Turgenev, Ibsen, Dostoyevsky, Enid Blyton etc. - I appear to be reading the wrong stuff and am thus so far in the dark ages, that I haven’t got a clue about pop culture and its ‘celebrity’ denizens. My children frequently tell me about Xtina, J-Lo, Mary-Kate & Ashley, Britney, Justin amongst others, who seem to share a similarity in that none of them possess surnames. (Is this a new religion or something?). I rarely turn on the idiot’s lantern which glowers in the corner of my living room for fear of accidentally stumbling across “I’m A Big Brother, Get My X-Factor In The Jungle” and feeling my IQ drain into negative figures. So, I have no idea of Who’s Who in the 21st century.
To remedy this, I decided to do some hefty research and ‘get with it’, as my ageing mother would say. To this end, I popped over the back to the chippy and asked R Donna if I could pinch her old glossy magazines as I fancied reading something which I didn’t have to think hard about and had lots of colourful pictures. She didn’t skimp and sent me home armed with about ten OK! magazines, which must account for at least an eighth of the Amazonian rainforest.
The first edition I thumbed through was dated May 15th 2007 and its headlines shrieked: “Kerry with her girls: I won’t let the social take my kids” and “Jordan Exclusive: I can’t wait to have sex with my dead husband”. Wow! I thought. I always thought Jordan was a fairly nice-looking, fairly liberal Muslim country – surely they aren’t condoning necrophilia? And who is Kerry? She looks vaguely familiar as some gobjaw off frozen food adverts…
I flicked to the Celebrity Round-Up page, to get a crash course in who these people are and discovered that a football ‘hunk’ called John Terry thinks Frank Lampard is one of the ‘most fanciable men in the Chelsea squad.’ Gosh. That’s really enlightening, I considered. I shall sleep better for knowing that…I haven’t a clue whether Terry’s Taste is Frankly Fantastic, as I still don't know what Lampard looks like.
And then, “James Blunt gets jiggy with Lindsay Lohan”. Now I know both of these people. I know James Blunt because he sang that excruciating piece of pap, You’re Beautiful, which made me want to squirt a can of WD40 down his throat to lubricate his vocal cords. And I know of Lindsay Lohan because she appears to have been banged more times than the outside lavatory door…The last time Lindsay slept with James was on April 15th when they took a hotel room together. Well, I think we should declare that a national holiday, actually. It’s so momentously newsworthy, and us Brits could do with a few extra Bank Holidays to keep up with the rest of Europe.
Keira Knightley went on to bleat that she’s “sick of her high-profile existence and would rather be an ‘insignificant speck’”. HAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Oh Yeah! Of course we believe that, Keira. Of course you wish you were working at the local council, filing addendum reports for the end of year accounts, wearing last year’s fashions from Top Shop and New Look. My heart bleeds for you, it really does…Lying little bugger.
Why do ‘famous’ people moan about being in the spotlight? Why do they hate having to sign autographs for their adoring fans? Why do they begrudge us 'commoners' breathing in their same airspace? And why do they sell their wedding stories to glossy mags and then take other publishers to court for invasion of their privacy? There is a simple choice to make: go into acting/modelling/’showbiz’ or work as a librarian...
“Towers of London may take part-time job to fund career”. Hell’s Teeth! I thought – have the ravens deserted one of England’s most famous buildings and a biblical plague is set to ravage Great Britain as the Monarchy crumbles? Nope. “Towers of London” is a band having cash flow problems. I guess that means their music is so crap, nobody wants to buy their records and they are having to set up as painter-decorators in a white van touring the Home Counties.
It appears patently obvious to me that to be considered a celebrity in this day and age, one doesn’t distinguish oneself by having talent: one simply has to have the capacity to drink lots of vodka cocktails with fancy names, hang out in night clubs, get blonde hair extensions put in, slather over the false tan, wear as little as possible, have frequent punch-ups with one’s partner (male or female) and then vomit over the nearest paparazzo.
And to think, I used to do that practically every weekend in my teens (there weren’t any paparazzi, I must admit, but there are some dubious photographs of me knocking about on my friends’ walls).
So, why aren’t I famous, then? Why is my only claim to fame in having a letter read out on BBC Radio 2’s Wake Up to Wogan under the pseudonym, Betty Picksiznose?
Well, I reckon I know the secret to this.
First and foremost, I don’t speak in a pseudo-strong regional accent: my accent is pretty bland unless I get very hot under the collar and then I lapse into Posh Scouse. And it takes a lot to rile me up - generally, I am just plain normal-speaking.
Nor do I have enormous knockers (cf. link to Jordan...ahem!) which would have your eye out if I side-swiped you.
My hair is all my own, and my teeth don’t light up in the dark – too many black coffees, diet Cokes, and Lamberts to do that, I’m afraid.
I believe that sunglasses should only be worn when the sun is actually shining, and fake tan always makes me look like Judith Chalmers.
I'm definitely not a size zero, whatever that is. (Question to our one American reader, if you are thinner than a size zero, do you vanish? (Question to our one British reader - what is the UK equivalent of size zero?))
And I only vomit uncontrollably when I have to clean the cats' litter tray out...
But ultimately, I can string a sentence together using words of more than one syllable and that is my downfall. I must stop speaking and writing coherently. Right now.
“So, later, baybz! Next stop, Big Bruvva!”