Richard Heene can have my 15 minutes.

It must be terrible to be certain that you deserve to be famous. I think the lesson that Richard Heene is offering us is that if you really desire something you will get it; it is not a new lesson and the irony it contains has aged longer than any wine but this only serves to give it a kick of surprising potentcy. While there are those who were convinced of Heene’s ‘genius’, that the whole scheme revolved around a six year old boy being able to convincingly lie smacks of desperate tragicomedy.

What made Andy Warhol such an important artist was his exploration of the concept of fame. The idea of celebrity is just that; it is nothing more than an idea in people’s heads yet it is a very real consideration when trying to understand the condition of modern humans. Like so many others, Heene wanted to be someone like Elizabeth Taylor, living life in front of an audience. Fame is one of those things, like being rich, that most people instantly assume is something they desire. It’s an old temptation; when the Devil took Jesus to the roof of the Temple and dared him to jump it was the promise of easy fame that lurked inside. Incidentally, I’m reading  ‘Lamb‘ by Christopher Moore and I love it. I had liked ‘The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove’ but found it uneven. What I liked most about it was that Dahlia had left it here so it reminds me of her. I haven’t even finished ‘Lamb’ yet but it is an official addition to the canon.  

It seems like an act of ego to say one doesn’t want to be famous. There’s a certain pomposity in declaring that one doesn’t want the desirable thing that everyone else seems to want. The truth is that it is incredibly easy to simply become famous; complete nitwits do this every day. The trick is becoming famous for the right reasons; famous writers write across our souls, famous artists make paintings in our dreams, famous actors give performances that show us ourselves, famous scientists discover and invent solutions to human suffering and understand the fundamental physical principles of the universe. Telling a child to lie while you cry wolf is not a good thing to become famous for, but when all you seek is fame you can’t argue with what you get.

Update: Apparently the wife of the man who drags his children towards tornadoes is coming to her senses. Good for her.

3 Responses to “Richard Heene can have my 15 minutes.”

  1. My only response to your final paragraph is:

    Don’t tase me bro.

  2. I have stumbled across your blog and am so grateful I have. I wonder if you realize what a gift it is that you can think so clearly about issues of religion — and I don’t mean that in a condescending way at all. I am… well, I am probably not as smart as I ought to be but I’m struggling with my faith and since I don’t have time to learn Hebrew and Aramaic and research the Bible myself, I have to read the thoughts of others who are a bit more intelligent than I am. Thank you for putting your thoughts here. I mean this all sincerely, so if it comes across crappy please know that’s not how it was meant!

    Anyway, thanks.

  3. […] then there are the new people; they are always coming, the new people, and thank God for them. Jen, I know what it is to struggle […]

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