The Ringing Alarm Bells of Celebrity
Celebrity is an ephemeral thing. One minute you’ve got a hit song, a hit movie, and the paparazzi chasing everywhere you go. The next you’re appearing on “Celebrity Wife Swap”, and constantly fending off the question…”Hey didn’t you used to be so and so?” Celebrity can, and most usually is a mind warping experience. Take for example the case of Dustin Diamond aka Screech, from hit TV show Saved by the Bell. His descent into purgatory has been well documented, and finally culminated in his conviction last week of two misdemeanors stemming from a barroom knife fight. I repeat, a BARROOM KNIFE FIGHT. Diamond, reports say, hated being called Screech in public, but hated not being recognized much more. As Shakespeare wrote “Therein lies the rub.” What happens when the phones stop ringing, and when they actually do ring they’re for a character you haven’t been in 20 years? Trust me; “Screech” isn’t the only crew member on this voyage of the damned. This boat is packed with one hit wonders in music (The list is endless), where are they now athletes (Terrell Owens just to name one), and my personal favorites, “reality stars” (Remember Joe Millionaire…yeah I didn’t think so!) All of these “has-been’s” seem to follow an eerie pattern, of substance abuse, violence, money issues, and the obligatory “random” sex tape (See Scott Stapp the lead singer of Creed). Perhaps the pattern isn’t that difficult to discern; Dismayed at their fleeting fame, the former “star” abuses drugs and alcohol. This leads to violent public encounters (which gets their name in the papers, and people talking about them…which in itself feeds the abuse and the outbursts…paging Shia LaBeouf) Having had to bail themselves out with a now fleeting fortune, legal fees, and the “lifestyle” they’d grown accustomed to taking its toll, is a sex tape really so farfetched a concept? I mean it built the Kardashian Empire. So let’s not be too hard on our old pal Screech. In the Celebrity world, best not to ask for whom the bell tolls…it tolls for thee.