I want to be famous

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James Hagen

Published: December 5, 2003

I’ve come to a horrifying realization.  In this 24-hour entertainment culture we live in, where everyone has their 15 minutes of fame, everyone in this country is famous, except me.

Well, it certainly seems that way.  Featured on the cover of People magazine this week was “Bachelorette” star Trista Rehn, a woman only famous because she lost on a reality show and then starred in another one.  I think that if she can become a media darling, why can’t I?

I don’t think it’s ever been easier to become famous in this country. 

The problem is finding a way to become renowned. Just for clarification, I have no singing, acting or athletic ability and I’m too short to be a model. Those avenues are sadly closed to me.  My goal is to become that singular of All-American celebrities, one famous simply for being famous. 

But how, I asked myself? I needed to do something brash and bold that would propel me to page 1A of every newspaper in the country. I thought about pulling some stunt, some huge public spectacle that would thrust me front and center on all the national news programs. Just as I was formulating a plan, however, that guy went over Niagara Falls in a barrel and lived. He stole my spotlight. Now he’s starring in the circus and I’m stuck here in the cruel shadow of anonymity. I next thought that I would release a home video of myself. That’s a quick and easy way to gain underground buzz. I figured I’d upload it to the Internet and within weeks I’d be the hottest sensation in media. Just when I was set to begin negotiations with an Internet company, though, the Paris Hilton video was released.  Once again, I was thwarted. Then, that proverbial light bulb went off over my head. I figured that I would become friends with a celebrity and become famous by association, like P. Diddy’s manservant, Fonsworth. It seemed so simple. Alas, Roy Jones Jr. found out I bet $1,000 on Antonio Tarver to knock him out in the eighth, so my pleas for friendship were met with deafening silence.

I admit that I turned desperate at that point. I thought if I was a victim of some tragedy, then the fame I so richly deserved would be mine. Sure, the physical scars would be long lasting but the warm spotlight of fame and adulation would be just the salve I needed. Tragically, a lion then attacked Roy Horn. My next plan was to emulate war hero Pvt. Jessica Lynch.  I thought if enemy forces captured me, America would fall in love with my vivacious wit and incomparable charm. Unfortunately, Pensacola isn’t a hotbed for terrorist activity. That plan went over like a lead balloon.

Then it hit me. Everything that can be done to achieve fame has been done.  There’s nothing left for someone with little or no talent to do to become famous. Sure, infamy is easy. Just look at Michael Jackson or any nickel-and-dime crook on the news. I don’t want infamy. I want fame, adulation and groupies. I have no way of doing it, though. Sure, I could work hard for years and years at my craft and maybe, one day, achieve fame, but who wants to work hard at something to become famous? That’s not the American way.

So here I am, a would-be celebrity without the means to become famous. If only I lived in California, I could have run for Governor earlier this year and grasped the media spotlight.   I guess I’m going to have to become famous the old-fashioned way. By marrying into money.

Anyone know if Athena Onassis is still single? If so, I’m on the first plane to Greece.