Yeah, just let that one stand there for a moment. It’s not exactly the deepest bit of breaking news out there, but really, what else is there to say about the events of the past weekend?
Besides, I don’t know what type font to use for a slow, eye roll or headshake.
Indeed, it’s a weird world we live in. Think about it for a second—here in the U.S., we are in the midst of two different wars, we have an economy that is a mess with no real easy fix. Worse, though some say the country is showing some signs of economic recovery, the unemployment rate is in double-digits with any job that can be outsourced somewhere cheaper, gone in the blink of an eye.
In other words, to steal from Bob Dylan, “Money doesn’t talk, it swears.”
Speaking of swearing, there is a healthcare bill ready for debate in the Senate very shortly. Whether the bill becomes a law or not does not supercede the historical significance that an actual bill that would grant millions of uninsured Americans proper health care made it this far.
It would be like if the Eagles won the Super Bowl or something… you know, something that has never happened.
Americans have so little regard for anything it seems. Sure, we’re told to be moral and just and all of that stuff, but out of the other side of the mouth comes the advice that if you can stick it to the other guy, get him before he gets you.
Since the world is a rat race it’s OK to be a rat.
We revel in failure. Just look at what the trendy television shows are—any type of live action, reality thing where we can sit in the safety of out over financed home with goods purchased on credit that are a couple of missed payments away from a visit from the repo man, and judge along with the “celebrity” judges. American Idol, Dancing with the Stars, Jon & Kate—you name it. As long as the someone making asses out of themselves is someone else, dial it up.
The worst part about this isn't that it's the crap we get fed... it's that the powers believe we like it. Because of that they get to treat hard-working, regular folks like they are idiots all because something as stupid as "Survivor" got good ratings.
Frankly, that's just mean.
So should it comes as a big surprise that at a time where real, sobering news should be delivered with all the proper nuance, we were treated to stories about White House gatecrashers and Tiger Woods’ mishap with an SUV and a fire hydrant as if they were just another Thanksgiving leftover.
Just pile it on deeper and deeper. We’ll get back on the nourishing, healthy program later.
Then again none of this should come as a surprise. We’ve already trashed real news and turned it into a press release or marketing ploy to a degree that somewhere Nietzsche and Darwin are trading high-fives. After all, two attention-starved jackasses are getting exactly what they wanted from a national press too vapid to see the irony in the reportage.
I’d go into deeper detail about the Secret Service/White House foul-up, but I think I’m going to go punch myself in the face first.
The oddest story of the weekend belonged to Tiger Woods, which is kind of news, but not really. See, when the No. 1 golfer on the planet wrecks his car into a tree and fire hydrant at 2:25 a.m. the morning after Thanksgiving, is found with scratches and bruises on his face while lying on his back unconscious next to the vehicle, which just so happened to have the back windows bashed out by his wife with a long iron, well yeah, that’s a news story. In fact, it’s a pretty big story.
But because there was no drugs involved—legal or otherwise—the story ends as soon as Tiger finishes his next 18 holes. If he can play golf and did not commit a crime, the rest of the story is no one’s bleeping business.
Seriously, get a life. It’s not that difficult. Tiger has one, but you can’t have it. Really, go get your own.
But that would be too difficult. So too would be digging into the issues of healthcare, economics or tribal wars in unfamiliar continents. Why count on people to think when they can get some eye candy? Why nourish when it’s the junk food that delivers the big bucks.
So as we hop on that spinning wheel so we can run in place and hope someone drops us another unfulfilling pellet, we might as well have some fun with it, right?
Try this theory out for size—the reason why “celebrity” stories and tell-all journalism is forced down our throats and controversy is created where it shouldn’t exist is because newsmen and women did the right thing back in the old days.
In sports, how many dust-ups did Mickey Mantle and Billy Martin get into during the average year? How many times did Mickey show up at the ballpark still hung over from a night at Toots Shor’s? Or what about Frank, Sammy and Dean-O? You know those guys were out having a good time running around the strip in Vegas—come on, we all heard Dean Martin at the Sands or Frank doing his thing at the Desert Inn.
And we know there was no way in hell that liquid in those rocks glasses wasn’t iced tea.
Oh yes, ballplayers, crooners, stars, starlets, politicians and presidents went out, got into trouble and didn’t have to worry about reading about it the next day on TMZ because there was something different going on back then…
People had their own lives and didn’t need to borrow Frank Sinatra’s. They didn’t go crashing some party they weren’t invited to because that would be classless. Worse, it’s tacky.
Nevertheless, murder and weather now have a partner on the nightly news and it’s called the celebrity minute. Only this time it lasts longer than a minute—it’s all they give us.