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David Porter » Entries tagged with "celebrities"

Forever Young: The Cursed Quest of the Performer

While no one wants to be old, performers chase any elusive butterfly to stay forever young. Technology may answer their prayer, but is it curse or blessing? Pete Townshend of The Who stuttered in “My Generation”, “hope I die before I get old.” Many did just that: Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Keith Moon, Brian Jones, Jim Morrison, Karen Carpenter, Eddie Cochran, Buddy Holly, Otis Redding, Tammi Terrell and Marc Bolan. Those who didn’t and lived into this century found themselves with renewed careers in their old age, touring the nostalgia circuit, reliving the memories, retelling the songs they sang in their teens like Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Eric Burden, Mick Jagger, Pete Townshend, Eric Burden, Van Morrison, Paul McCartney and Ray Davies. In a sense, and as their audiences have grown old with … Read entire article »

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Celebrities’ Jobs and Head-Starts Before They Were Famous

Some famous people get a lift-up in life from already successful parents; others have to work their way up from unpromising, often humble, beginnings. Stories and pictures about celebrities, particularly when they were children or high school kids seem to be endlessly fascinating. The lives of such people who started other careers before they heard fame knock on their door calling them to public stages, are equally absorbing. Reality TV shows like America’s/Britain’s Got Talent or The X Factor frequently take older people or starry-eyed teenagers from colleges, supermarket check-outs, restaurants, telesales or almost anything except what they once only could dream about. British comedians and presenters Clive Anderson and Harry Hill were both general medical practitioners and magician Paul Daniels was an accountant before deciding that they could earn more making … Read entire article »

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Male Baldness Need Be No Barrier to Success in Life

In an age of image obsession, technology to change appearances and to fight aging, strangely, baldness can be an asset, inspiring confidence and authority. There is an entire website devoted to famous baldies, or follicularly-challenged/hair disadvantaged as political correctness would have it, which lists, among many, bald actors (John Malkovich, Yul Bryner, Patrick Stewart, Telly Savalas); African Americans (Samuel L Jackson); musicians (Sinead O’Connor, Moby, Elton John); politicians (Winston Churchill, Gorbachev); and sportspeople (Duncan Mayhew, Michael Jordan). Clearly, in no way can their lack of hair have meant any shortfall in success during their careers. Bald Men Facing Fashion Issues In the article Embrace Your Baldness in 5 Steps, AskMen UK advised fashion conscious worried balding men to “embrace their baldness.” It said that “Michael Jordan made it cool for black men and … Read entire article »

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Sorry Seems to be the Hardest (Official) Word

‘Mea Culpa’ is formal admission of personal fault or error. It’s medicine that often many public figures and their organisations find hard to swallow. The chorus of Elton John/Bernie Taupin 1976 song Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word expresses a minority sentiment about personal apology. ‘It’s sad, so sad/It’s a sad, sad situation/And it’s getting more and more absurd/It’s sad, so sad/Why can’t we talk it over/Oh it seems to me/That sorry seems to be the hardest word’. Fair enough, individually; but corporately? Biblically, ‘sins of the father afflict unto several generations’. Some references to generational sin/punishment appear contradictory, though. In Leviticus 26:39: ‘because of their fathers’ sins they will waste away’; yet in 2 Chronicles 25:4: ‘fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor children put to … Read entire article »

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The Tyranny of Consumerism and Other Modern Ailments

People’s behaviour has long been conditioned by dictators, time, crowds, addictions. Now fashion, shopping and consumerism join the list of life’s traps. Dictators have subjected/enslaved others for as long as humans have lived in tribes. The tyranny of crowd behaviour at sports, grabbing the latest must-have (like Cabbage Patch Dolls in 1978) or lynch-mob gladiatorial responses like at executions, is well documented. The tyranny of the urgent is addressed by ACTS International from a Christian perspective, citing Ecclesiastes 3:1-8: ‘There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal … a time for war and a time for peace’, as … Read entire article »

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The Diaries of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly Reflect All of Life

For centuries people from every walk of life have kept accounts of their daily lives, which are at once historical masterpieces and exercises in hubris. Mae West said: ‘Keep a diary, and some day it’ll keep you’. Oscar Wilde quipped, ‘Inever travel without my diary. I like to have something sensational to read on the train’. Both remarks suggest diaries are not only kept for private thoughts/remembrances, but may also be read in the future by others. This applies to the famous or those close to events, like politicians or creatives. English 17th century diarist Samuel Pepys (1633-1703) set the standard. He lived in interesting times, but also was privy to workings of the English crown restored in the person of Charles II … Read entire article »

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Celebrity Worship Syndrome: the New Religion for Many People

Longing to be famous for being famous, to bask in media spotlights, to share celebrity lives: these are the dreams of sufferers of this condition . Celebrity Worship Syndrome was coined in 2003 to describe an obsessive-addictive disorder displayed by individuals who follow the day-to-day life of people in the public eye. Even people from modest, unlikely backgrounds can suddenly become media celebrities. In the past, British people had a fascination for details about the Royal Family, as there was limited information available. By the time the life and death of Diana, Princess of Wales (from marrying Prince Charles in 1981 to her death in 1997), the media coverage led to a national obsession. Even after her death, Princess Diana remains in the … Read entire article »

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Some Celebrities Are Worth Much More Dead Than Alive

Forbes’ Magazine publishes an annual list of the top earners among dead celebrities, who last year grossed $886m. Yves St Laurent came first, at $350m. Yves St Laurent ‘earned’ the most of the dead celebrities last year, mainly through the sale of valuable paintings), and he beat Michael Jackson, Elvis Presley ($52m), Kurt Cobain ($50m) and Andy Warhol ($9m). However, it is perhaps Jackson who has the most potential to go on year after year into the future, his estate earning millions of dollars. It made nearly $100m in the first nine months after his death. Kings of Pop Music Cynics would describe death as a smart career move for the already rich and famous, especially those who have a cloud of controversy over … Read entire article »

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