Why is J-Lo more popular than Jesus? That's one of the questions asked by Jake Halpern, author of Fame Junkies: The Hidden Truths Behind America's Favorite Addiction.
I caught 20/20's interview with Jake Halpern Friday night, and the thing that keeps sticking in my mind about Fame Junkies is that Jake believes we're all lonelier than ever in our real lives -- working in front of computers all day and not connecting with each other -- then we come home and surf the web more.
Because of this loneliness, the Fame Junkies' author posits that we seek fame because we believe it will buy us a measure of happiness and human connection that we lack in our every day lives. This theory could be especially true for folks like me, who spend our workdays in the company of very few people. Like the lifeguard at my health club's pool, who unveiled his life to me as I became his sounding board, hanging around in the hot tub listening till I became nearly faint.
Fame? I don't want to be famous for no purpose. But I admit that like nearly every other human being, I crave connection. Constant Craving, as kd lang's infectious song rang today thru my minivan. It's the reason my new favorite site MyBlogLog is so successful. Just this weekend I went thru and added a whole bunch of folks my contacts, and plenty of them returned the favor. How heady it is to log on daily to see a new faceload of people listed in my admirers section, begging to be added as virtual friends.
It wasn't like this 30 years ago, when weekend nights found my sister and I soaking up Fantasy Island on the huge console and the racuous laughs of my grandparents and mom and aunt and uncle over their weekly game of Bid Whist.
I miss those days of no internet, no BlueTooth, no YouTube. I miss people in the flesh. Thinking of the old days surprisingly makes me break into the ugly frown preceeding a cry. Being a corporate nomad, I duplicate those nights here and there with my adopted family of friends, but they aren't the weekly get-togethers to "pitch a Wang Dang Doodle all night long" that I grew up around.
Everybody's working now, getting our hustle on to obtain the almighty dollars to pay bills and buy more toys to separate us. Life is funny that way...
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