These Are My (Pop-Culture) Confessions

I came home tonight and caught the tail end of Access Hollywood (or was it Extra?). In any case, Billy Bush was going on and on about Angelina Jolie's newest adopted child. They had some psychiatrist on the show talking about how the biggest issue the kid will have is getting used to dealing with the paparazzi. I told my husband that I didn't think I could deal with being a celebrity and having a media frenzy wherever I went. He said he wouldn't mind if he had enough money to live comfortably. We debated that for a bit and I stuck to my side of the coin.

For one, I don't think I could pass the fashionista litmus test. I wear too much black and I like to dress down more than I enjoy dressing up. I'd be on the "Needs a new stylist" list every week. Mr. Blackwell would roast me from here to eternity.

Bigger than that though is that I don't think I could deal with being unable to watch people because of them being too busy watching me. I got to thinking about how we're all just a bit too obsessed with pop culture. I'll bet more people in America knew Heather Mills was going to be on Dancing With the Stars tonight than knew that today is the is 4th anniversary of our little Iraq exploits.

But, I'm not a hypocrite so I have to come clean about my own little pop-culture issues. Although confession of sins is not allowed in my religious tradition, I figure that confessing my pop culture obsessions could be a good thing. Perhaps if I believe, like they say in AA, that the first step is admitting the problem, I'll be able to convince my husband to put down the copy of US Weekly that I bought at the Dallas airport on Friday night. He's sitting in bed right next to me, reading about celebrity drug addictions. He just said, "These people are sick!" but he hasn't chucked it into the trash. So, you wanna know:

  1. I buy a copy of US Weekly or Star magazine at least once a month. Now, I know that gossip kills the soul of the person being talked about and the person doing the talking. BUT, I get sucked into the stories and before you know it, I'm reading, "Stars. They're just like us." Um, no they're not. I thank the heavens for rent control. They are considering moving to Malibu.
  2. Celebrity gossip sites: I used to read Defamer religiously. Now I just check out Popsugar. I found that sites like Defamer and The Superficial had these mean, snarky commentators and I didn't like that.
  3. I don't schedule anything on Mondays at 9 pm because I'm obsessed with the show "Heroes". It's on hiatus now and my Monday nights are relatively boring as a result.
  4. I like to watch America's Next Top Model. I don't catch it every week but I like to watch it. Except that Ms. J is so annoying and I don't think his/her walk is really all that.
  5. I visit Orlando Bloom and Depeche Mode fansites. I even leave comments on the Depeche Mode message boards. I know obscure facts that the average person that buys a DM cd doesn't know. Do these random facts help me in the real world? THAT remains to be seen.
  6. Sometimes I watch The Real World. I's a bunch of drinking, whoring and arguing. It's the proverbial train wreck. Why don't I just click it off?

    I'll leave it at six "problems". And, let me take a moment to remind myself (and you) that I'm not all bad.

    My saving graces:
  1. I've never seen Grey's Anatomy or Desperate Housewives. Based on the advertisements for Grey's , I now know how the spread of venereal diseases happens so quickly.
  2. I've only watched American Idol twice. First season. And I have no idea who's on this season. Don't care either....but I do sorta like Kelly Clarkson.
  3. I've only seen Dancing With the Stars twice. Once was tonight and I only watched because I wanted to see the trailer for Pirates of the Carribean: At World's End. The trailer came on an hour and 22 minutes into the program. Waay too long to wait for that. Then, I left it on to watch Heather Mills dance. She was pretty awful and I hope she gets the boot despite her fake leg.
I'm really wondering, why do we all get so obsessed with pop culture? Is it a conspiracy to distract us from what's really going on in the world? And, what are your pop-culture confessions?


Anonymous said…
I'll come out from under my lurker's cloak for this one! Having been born and raised in Los Angeles, I got it honest. My best friend in high school's mother was a "publicist to the stars". We went places in 11th and 12th grade no one our age was able to go. Backstage at concerts, clubs etc... We met all kinds of people and were treated nicely by a lot of celebs. It got to the point where I began to understand these were really just " regular people" with waaaaay better paying jobs. My friend followed in her mother's footsteps and works at ABC , but I'm older now, married, settled...AND I NEED MY FIX EVERY WEEK!! People, US Weekly, Star (sometimes), IN Touch (never! I hate that magazine)

Sometimes, through old friends, I get invited to the after-parties, I get tickets to special events etc... and I LOVE it. It's just the Hollywood/Black Hollywood fix I need. (yes! There is a difference :) )

Who can say they've been to the Oscars, a VANITY FAIR party, AND the Peterson Museum the night Biggie was killed? Though, after that night I must admit I said "no mas".
Anonymous said…
did you cry when you watched american idol? i've only seen it twice and was so disappointed in myself for having an emotional reaction to it.

Liz Dwyer said…
Thanks for de-lurking yourself...I'll bet you have some stories to tell for sure. Undoubtedly there some huge differences between Hollywood/Black Hollywood even though folks want to act like it's all the same once you become a celebrity. And I hate IN Touch as well...makes me wonder what made Star a bit more reputable than it used to be?

Aww, that's so cute that you cried, but no I didn't cry either time I saw Idol. Both times I've seen shows with all the crazy people that come to audition and they just gave me a headache. Maybe if I watched it some other time I'd have a different take on it.
West said…
I got hooked on some of the WORST soap operas while I was in college. That particular illness is in remission, at the moment.

I've been known to watch The Real World from time-to-time, but you're right that it's devolved quite a bit in the past decade or so.

I remember being shocked to find that a friend of mine actually bought "the tabloids." I've never known anyone before or since to make this particular confession... until now, anyway. :-)
Liz Dwyer said…
I used to be HOOKED on Young and the Restless...I thought I personally knew Victor Newman. As for The Real World, they need to take it back to them actually having jobs and leading real lives. I think I'm not the only one buying the fact, I have colleagues that subscribe to those. They just don't admit it!
Anonymous said…
My pop obsession is worse....has anyone ever heard of the "real housewives of orange county" Yes...I admit it...its nothing but a bunch of rich white women and their dumbed down men and stupid ass kids...but I really don't want to be the Joneses if they are the Joneses!!!
velvet said…
I never thought that I was into pop-culture, but....

I get People every week.

And... I love Lost, even if the show's not as good anymore.

That's pretty much it, but that's enough to qualify, isn't it? And about Orlando Bloom... oh, yes. ;)

Kate said…
I too used to read The Superficial but I stopped because I thought it was just too mean! It was when the contents of Paris Hilton's storage unit were exposed that I was struck with sympathy. I've been on a pop culture fast ever since.
Jon said…
i would have to hide if i were rich. like you, i could not deal with all of the people. (i have to hide sometimes as it is right now)
Liz Dwyer said…
I've seen the commercial for those Real Housewives of Orange County...but I've never watched. Are they just like an adult version of Laguna Beach? Seems like it.

I watched Lost the first season and then lost interest. It was too convenient for new plane crash survivors to appear and Hurley should have lost weight. This year, it's Heroes for me and I hope it doesn't disappoint. And yes, Mr. eldest son said to me last night, "You're going to like that Pirates movie because Orlando Bloom is in it!"

I agree! They are SO mean. I simultaneously dislike and feel sorry for Paris Hilton because she seems so confused. How does she "get away" with saying racial slurs on camera? I try to keep in mind that if someone wasn't paying her, she wouldn't live/behave in the way she does. She's the human embodiment of materialism.

Me too. I have to hide sometimes as well. I can be around people but then I have a saturation point and I have to go be by myself.
Sundry said…
Oh jeez. I just wrote a huge post and it got blown away. I promise to confess again...

Did you disable links to your blog? I can't get the one I put on my blog to work!
Liz Dwyer said…
Oh man, I hate when the comments go into a black happened earlier today with a post I'd finished. So frustrating. I don't think I've disabled links to my blog...not even sure how to do that...but I'll do a little investigating and see if one of my kids got a little creative with my laptop or something.
Mamita Umita said…
I tend to read the Star, US weekly, People and all those other glossy gossip mags when I fly as well. I was thinking about this when I flew overseas recently, that if the plane crashed or something the last thing I would have been thinking about was, "OMG can you believe Cameron Diaz was wearing that?!" Not the way I would really want to die right?

I am also very obsessed with Grey's Anatomy as you know. I really felt at times like this is the way a real hospital OR setting is - until my most recent visit and then I remember its only a show.

I think we become so transfixed with Pop Culture as a way to escape the thoughts and reality of our own lives and problems. Like gee, Britney Spears has got REAL problems, and I am just late on my car note - stuff like that. In some ways I think it can be healthy, but when you take it too far - Woah! Think about all the stalkers and crazy people who never snap out of their love affairs with people or characters that don't even exist?

We can't really feel bad for those who get all this attention, even though its unwanted at times because we buy the stuff, we read the websites, and we watch the shows that talk about what tattoo someone got, or how someone lost 50 pounds. Its a never ending cycle at this point I'm afraid. I think it would only take something really tragic for it to end. And I think in an odd way if it did end, the famous people would miss all the attention they get or once got.
Mamita Umita said…
One more thing. Black is VERY Chic - it never goes out of style. Classic - look at Audrey Hepburn, she always wore black.
Anonymous said…
I'm embarassed that I know who Sienna Miller is. There I said it... Wow! I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders.
Liz Dwyer said…
Good point about those magazines being the last thing in your consciousness if something bad were to happen. Imagine having images of Britney Spears sans underwear permanently ingrained into your psyche for the rest of eternity? Or maybe that's what being in hell is like? I do think they'd miss the attention. Otherwise, they'd stay away from The Ivy and Kitson.

And, I think I'm going to wear all black tomorrow just so I can feel ultra chic.

Well, she was the scorned woman in Nannygate so of course you know about her! That was one of the most important stories of the past decade. Scandalous: Jude Law cheats on wife, gets with Sienna and then cheats on her with the nanny!

Oh, oops, clearly I know a bit about Sienna as well. ;0 Never seen any of her films though.

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