Sorry, We're Closed

Friday, February 09, 2007


Anna Nicole Smith died today.

People around the country are mourning her death, wondering how or why she died suddenly at age 39, trying to put her legacy into words.

Why in hell should anyone care?

The papers are full of obituary notices every day. But none of those people are mourned by anyone but their loved ones and friends.

I meaning no disrespect to Ms. Smith just because she died...many people do it every day, some of them possibly even related to us or just part of our lives.

But "we" didn't KNOW her.

So why do we pay attention? What, exactly, did she DO in her life that makes her someone that anybody but HER friends and family should have cared about?

Anna Nicole Smith was a media creation, a failed entertainer without the talent to do anything other than peddle oneself at a heavy discount. Someone that our collective persona should have forgotten about years ago, consigned her to the heap of self-obsessed attention junkies--you know, people who may need help, but also need to just get a job like the rest of us.

Someone foisted on the collective consciousness through the public airwaves and newsstands--foisted on us by powerful and cynical people who should know better (and care more) about what they're doing to this country.

Why did this country pay attention to someone who did things that we usually condemn in others? Why do we spend a second acknowledging these ridiculous public narcissists with nothing to offer but their own easily-sold abandonment of dignity, respect, or responsibility?

And more importantly, to paraphrase something Cecilia said to me tonight, "Why is it so important to anybody that SHE died? Why is it that we don't care about the people who starved to death today, or about the people who died in Iraq, or the children who don't have enough to eat. What about the 48-year-old guy, who probably had a terrible life, who died outside today in the cold?"

What indeed? Every day, people around the world suffer. REALLY suffer. People are injured by car bombs, blown apart by land mines, raped or tortured by people our government supports. There's not enough food. There's not enough clean air or water.

And we pay attention to the self-imposed miseries of a rich bottle blonde, a woman who married an elderly millionaire, posed for Playboy, and who, when her stock was low enough that she could never again trade on dignity, interested a television network in airing a fricking television show about her life that, for anyone who could stand watching, was absolutely intolerable in its unpleasantness, smug-self-satisfaction, and cheap exploitation.

Does anyone understand this? I don't.


Blogger Cas Tway said...

Stu, I think that sums it up pretty well. A guy at work tonight was talking about how he felt sorry for her... I wasn't glad she died or anything, but couldn't put my finger on how I actually felt.

I think you nailed it. Why should we care, indeed. The fact that it doesn't matter in our life doesn't mean we wished her ill.

But hey, while we're on the topic... you can get "Will Maker" from Costco for only $39.99! Free shipping!

2:01 AM, February 10, 2007

Anonymous duck said...

Unfortunately, the morons in this country love train wrecks, especially those wearing a dress.

11:16 AM, February 11, 2007

Anonymous Amy said...

of course I understand.

Schadenfreude is almost an American passtime.

Americans love it when stars fall, even cheap media creations like Anna Nicole Smith.

She had it "all", money, looks, and her 15 minutes of fame (over and over and over), but was also an addict with serious emotional problems who seemed to excel at making bad choices.

Anna Nicole was a 39 year old version of Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, or Nicole Ritchie. She was a better looking version of Courtney Love.

Regular folks have such boring, ordinary lives with boring, ordinary problems. Anna Nicole had exciting problems, and with all the appeal of a soap opera or fallen child star (Danny Bonaduce anyone?), it was thrilling to tune in to see what kind of trouble she was in now.

Courtney Love could learn a thing or two from Anna Nicole.

Anyway, as for Ceci's question, think about the state of affairs in this country. Think about how long it took folks to pull their heads out of the sand on the subject of the war in Iraq. Think of how many folks still have their heads clearly elsewhere on the subject of poverty, or global warming.

Reality is hard, sad, puzzling, and impossible to wrap your head around for most regular folks. Celebrities are not real. ANS might as well have been a cartoon character, or a character from a nighttime soap.

Not real = oooh exciting.
Reality = ooh sad. boring. scary.

...and Americans wonder why the rest of the world laughs at us.


7:56 AM, February 12, 2007

Blogger Larry Epke said...

'Tis said that a celebrity is "a person famous for being famous."

Anna Nicole Smith is the ultimate celebrity, by that definition.

9:28 AM, February 12, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think I could put it any better than Amy!

10:02 AM, February 15, 2007

Blogger simplicity said...


7:23 PM, February 15, 2007


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