ASK any 10 kids today what they want to be when they grow up and at least half of them will tell you they want to be famous. That’s not the upsetting part. The really disturbing thing is that they easily can become famous.

Fame used to be a pipe dream that required attendance at a funky New York arts school where you had to pay in sweat and dance on the roofs of taxicabs. These days, fame doesn’t take much. We already have a bunch of young celebrities who don’t really do anything other than be famous (which currently entails going to parties sans panties, making sex tapes, sharing nude cellphone pix, and driving into utility poles — all of which apparently “exhausts” them every six months or so.)

They’ve set a shitty example for today’s fame-seeking kids, who don’t necessarily want to sing or dance or entertain — they just want to be watched. To them, the untelevised life isn’t worth living.

It’s been almost two decades since MTV first aimed its cameras at a carefully chosen cast of “ordinary” youngsters for “The Real World.” Back then, the show was a novelty. Today, there are hundreds of programs and channels and websites that hold the key to no-talent-required celebrity.

“American Idol,” “Laguna Beach,” “The Hills,” “Big Brother,” “Kid Nation” and YouTube have shown that millions of people will watch adolescents do fairly unremarkable things. What has Heidi Montag done to become so famous other than be a bitch, jump in front of cameras, and renovate her boobs?

We’re in desperate need of a fame gatekeeper, someone who can parcel out attention to those who deserve it. Someone who would make sure we never have to hear about, say, Eliot Spitzer’s call girl again. It’s bad enough we were subjected to snippets of her crappy songs when the sex scandal made news, but now this attention whore/whore (I refuse to use her name) is pitching a reality dating show that would document her search for love. Who on earth could she possibly love more than her obsession with being famous?

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Fame should be left to the pros (and not that kind). As always, I think the Pussycat Dolls sum it up best — here are some words of wisdom from their new single: “When I grow up I wanna be famous, I wanna be a star, I wanna be in movies. When I grow up I wanna see the world, drive nice cars, I wanna have groupies. When I grow up, be on TV, people know me, be on magazines. When I grow up, fresh and clean, number one chick when I step out on the scene. Be careful what you wish for ’cause you just might get it. You just might get it. You just might get it.

Yeah, kids. Take a lesson on the pitfalls of fame from a suggestively named gaggle of interchangeable dancers with little vocal talent who discovered Auto-Tune and dressed up like hookers only to wind up international music superstars with hit albums, millions of fans, a reality show and their own clothing lines.

What kid would wish for that?



  1. 45vinyljunkie Says:

    The advent of cable TV and 24-hour news channels can be blamed for the instant fame that is so prevalent nowadays. With all the channels available, they have to fill their time with something, don’t they? Thirty years ago, TV airtime was precious. Do you think Walter Cronkite would have given two seconds of his 30-minute newscast to someone like Paris Hilton? These days CNN, MSNBC, etc. always fill their extra time telling us about people about whom I couldn’t care less. Don’t be surprised if the woman former presidential candidate John Edwards was screwing gets an offer in the next three months to star in her own reality show. (I say three months because nobody will remember her four months from now.)

  2. 45vinyljunkie Says:

    P.S.: Adam, who is that blonde with her ass up in the air? You should have Photoshopped a “This End Up” tattoo on her left cheek.

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