Posted tagged ‘Britney Spears’

I won’t be reading this one

October 15, 2009

How many autobiographies should a self-respecting celebrity publish? Well, if you ask Katie Price (otherwise known as the ‘glamour’ model Jordan), at least four. I gather (and not from personal knowledge, I can assure you) that this oeuvre has just been published. And why is it newsworthy? Because some of the major book chains won’t be stocking it, taking the view that, well, three was enough. I have made a half hearted attempt to find out what this one is called, and did a search on Amazon, but gave up trying to work it all out. Still, I have been able to discover that Jordan wants Julia Roberts to play her in the hoped for (by her) Hollywood interpretation of the work. Bless her.

I suppose I should come clean and admit something: I have met Katie Price, one to one. It was right here in DCU. She was appearing on the short-lived Dunphy chat show that went out from the Helix, and I sometimes wandered over to meet the guests in the green room. And I’ll own up a little more: I had absolutely no idea who Katie Price was and, armed with such ignorance, actually rather liked her. If I can put it this way, she was rather dignified in a slightly pitiful way. Maybe I would come away with the same opinion of, say, Britney Spears, whose autobiography (if that’s what it is, and please don’t feel the need to tell me) I also won’t be reading.

I try not to look awkwardly at popular culture – if I am to be the accessible university President I want to claim to be I need to know something about it – but yet I cannot work my way into the mindset of those who think that Hello magazine is worth whatever the amount of money is you have to pay to get it. But more to the point, I cannot believe that the destruction of a person’s life that almost inevitably follows on the heels of unwarranted celebrity is something we should tolerate so easily. There is something odd about recognising celebrity in a person when you would be hard pushed to say what, objectively, the celebrity status is based on. Maybe it’s worse than odd, maybe it’s nasty. We build up such icons because we know, really, that they make good targets, not least because we don’t have to temper our indignation at them with second thoughts about their talents.

If the current economic troubles cause us to reconsider what kind of society we are, this might be a good place to start.