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April 24, 2001
4:27 AM   Subscribe

Oh I don't know, I just liked reading Mrs Aguilera telling someone off.
posted by holloway (37 comments total)

 
I'm a sucker for "hey man, they're people too" guff.
posted by holloway at 4:28 AM on April 24, 2001


I like how Mrs. Aguilera makes her daughter's celebrity sound like both a terminal disease and a tremendous humanitarian gift to the human race. I think that's pretty special.
posted by frenetic at 5:01 AM on April 24, 2001


Well, yeah. Celebs arguably give up their private lives for their careers - that's how it goes.

The life we live, thanks to media and the odd tendency to morph stars into some sort of non-human, fantasy entertainment machines, is very stressful.

Sorry, but that was a decision. Christina Aguilera didn't have to do anything she's doing now - it was all by choice. No one forced her to plaster herself all over the Viacom Triad; no one forced her to sign a recording contract.

Also: when the end product resembles something that a machine could have generated, it's a lot easier to treat the source as a machine, as well.
posted by hijinx at 5:06 AM on April 24, 2001


Who's this Christina Aguilera? I mean I've heard of her but I don't think I know any of her songs or anything. She's like Britney Spears or something?

The letter reply is really funny though.
posted by tiaka at 5:19 AM on April 24, 2001


No, you're all wrong. She's a human-being like you or I and entitle to all the same respect and privacy. Just because she's a celebrity doesn't mean she's some android with glowing LEDs though some treat her as such. She's as frail as you or I. It's a challenge to be on top of her game, 24/7, and she always tries to give 110% and **that's** what counts. I'm disgusted at the the posters above me's expectations on someone that decided to do something out of the goodness of their heart but couldn't because they were very ill. Ya'll should be ashamed of yourselves!
posted by holloway at 5:23 AM on April 24, 2001


One thing's for sure: there's no shortage of critics in the world. Especially mean critics.
posted by Witold at 5:28 AM on April 24, 2001


if she *was* an android with glowing LEDs, i think i'd like to date her
posted by sawks at 5:51 AM on April 24, 2001


However many times I try, I can't feel very sorry for celebrities who complain about how difficult it is to be famous.
If you chase celebrity, as Christina Aguilera has done from an early age, you soon learn what it is to be 'on' 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There are plenty who've gone before and told how hard it is to be chased by the media, yet people still do it, still crave the limelight.
To then turn round and complain how terrible celebrity life is, and how the 'little people' don't appreciate what you go through to please them, my heart bleeds. How long would it take for the world to consign Christina Aguilera to the bargain bin of pop if she were to stop tomorrow, 6 weeks? Maybe less.
If life is really that hard, do something else instead of feeding your own sense of inflated self-importance. Believe me, it won't take the public long to forget you existed and move on to the next self-obsessed bimbo, then you can go back to obscurity and get away from all the stress. No? Thought not.
posted by Markb at 6:06 AM on April 24, 2001


Holloway:

You've got a funny Bad Cat.
posted by acridrabbit at 6:16 AM on April 24, 2001


all i know is that i would NEVER EVER let my daughter out in public dressed like that, for both prudish and aesthetic reasons.
posted by maura at 6:36 AM on April 24, 2001


holy bad hair day...
posted by jbelshaw at 6:49 AM on April 24, 2001


Which came first: the celebrity lifestyle, or the public expectations of the celebrity lifestyle?

Remember, though, that the people really making money out of the Britney/Christina machine don't have to suffer the scrutiny (and often the indignity) of being in the public spotlight. After all, to a studio exec, these little-girl performers are queuing up to be exploited, then dumped on the "last week's model" pile.
posted by holgate at 7:00 AM on April 24, 2001


you soon learn what it is to be 'on' 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

You know the thing about that statement is that these young "pop stars" are not in control of their lives -- they're canned entertainment and they are pouring money into other people's pockets. I feel that it's their handlers and press agents and all the vulturey hangers-on that force this 24/7 lifestyle. There are plenty of celebrities that seem to have pretty private lives. However, these kids don't look in control and I think that's pretty gross.
posted by amanda at 7:16 AM on April 24, 2001


I'm a fan of Aguilera, I think she's a genuine vocal talent, and some of her music actually moves beyond pop. I'm sort of fascinated by watching her persona and career evolve. In the last 6 months or so it's getting strange - she's doing much less press, and wearing much stranger things. No idea what it means at this point.

Anyway, I think I'd like to address this issue of: "Well, you courted fame, live with it" -- To me it's a bit like notoriety in anything. You start to become *known* to people who don't *know* you and things start to turn weird. I'm sure there are human beings inside the public personas of these people, but it starts to get muddy once you start becoming an idoru.

Thing is, when you make a move to excel according to the rules of the game, you're not asking for hyperscrutiny, and stress, you just want to get a little fame, a loaf of money, and be happy. Unfortunately anytime you seek "fame" it comes with outcomes you don't want or expect.

One need only watch any given episode of "Behind The Music" to get a sense of this. Even bands I hate start to look sympathetic when you realize that at some point they couldn't leave the house. I also see the warping effect of fame in the lives of people like Michael Jackson, Elvis Presley, The Beatles, Brian Wilson, Rolling Stones, etc.

I think my point is that those who dismiss the stress of stardom on the stars are being rigidly unsympathetic, and might do well to stop and consider what a life under the microscope might be like, when maybe all these people want to do is sing some songs and shake their groove things.
posted by artlung at 8:19 AM on April 24, 2001


I'm sure it's stressful living that kind of life. When Socrates said "The unexamined life is not worth living," I don't imagine he envisioned the modern press.

However, Aguilera hardly needs to sweat it. She's young and healthy. She can take it for the next couple years. Because after that, nobody is going to pay the blindest bit of attention to her. And then she can heave a sigh of relief, and wearily haul herself up into the Pop Footnote Bus and take her seat next to Tiffany and Debbie Gibson, and finally relax.
posted by Skot at 8:50 AM on April 24, 2001


Michael Jackson is warped?
posted by jpoulos at 8:55 AM on April 24, 2001


Gee, I'd like to be sympathetic, but Miss Aguilera wouldn't have been in the public spotlight if her mother hadn't allowed her to be there. Perhaps her mother ought to reread what she wrote, and consider that all of that pain and suffering wrought on her daughter is legitimately what she choose to do to her child. What a hideous parent that woman is.
posted by kristin at 9:03 AM on April 24, 2001


Celebrities complaining about being famous. How many times do we have to go over this. She knew was she was getting into, blah blah.


Skot, the cheesy pop footnote bus makes for an amusing metaphor but in reality even the most washed up stars are unbelievably wealthy compared to you or me. Want Mary Wilson to come to you convention and sing a song, expect to pay over 60k for one night's worth of work. Not to mention dealing with an 'I'm SOMEBODY' personality.

Its easy to poke fun at the no-longer-chic but there's a very good chance they'll come out of it with enough cash and the nostalgia value to keep raking in the bucks until they're 80. Completely staying away from the 8-5 lifestyle and do all sorts of things you'll never do.

I'm not defending the record/media industries but their celebrities knew what they were getting into and less get a lot more than 99% of the population. Their complaints have no worth to me.
posted by skallas at 9:06 AM on April 24, 2001


Hey, skallas, no argument here, although I can see where my first sentence might be read as a sort of weary patience for this sort of horseshit. My fault. In fact, I was just utilizing what I hoped was a snarky intro . . . a strategy which clearly failed. To clarify, I find this sort of "pity-me-the-put-upon-rock-star" laughable and beyond hubris.

Its easy to poke fun at the no-longer-chic

Exactly! And thank goodness. Comedy is hard enough as it is without people making it difficult for me. Allah praise the slow-moving targets.
posted by Skot at 9:25 AM on April 24, 2001



Excuse me for not shedding tears with Christina.

If any of you woke up tomorrow with a beautiful singing voice, a hit album/CD/cassette, instant fame, and a recording contract (and the body of an eighteen-year-old), would you expect life to become easier or more hectic? Would you expect your boss (the recording label) to require you to schedule/attend countless autograph sessions, public appearances, publicity stunts, and interviews not to mention recording sessions, rehearsals, and concerts? Would you expect to spend nearly every waking moment of your life "on camera"?

So would I.

That's why I just cannot go along with the line of reasoning declaring extraordinary privacy rights for INTENTIONAL celebrities (as opposed to those who just happen to be THRUST into the media spotlight). Remember, these folks allow themselves to be exposed to as much of the public as possible, so it seems unreasonable that they wish to turn fame on and off at the flick of a switch.

Remember the guy that was shot down over Bosnia several years ago? Remember how many talk shows and news stories we heard about that guy? Now that he does not put himself in the public eye so often, anybody remember his name?

That's what Christina can do if she is suffering so much: quit doing interviews, TV appearances, and publicity stunts; put on a pair of jeans and a sweatshirt (instead of the latest from the Ho-of-the-month-club); stay home with friends instead of on the road (if she hasn't alienated them all); go back to school. In other words, live like the rest of the world - anonymously!


posted by mbawiz at 9:28 AM on April 24, 2001


Miss Aguilera and her mother should visit a cancer ward and then tell me how "hard" Christina's life is.
posted by ImAlwaysRight at 9:42 AM on April 24, 2001


I like your 'title' attribute:

Christina Aguilera's mother responds to critic. ps. my new kitten named Bad Cat (because that's what we call him) was just walking over keyboard and it wrote this to you all '' '''''''''''''''''';/
//////////////////////////
///////////////////////////////////
/744444444444444444444
44444444444444444444444
444444444444/////////////////
/////////////,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,''


(broken up to avoid nasty page breaks)
posted by gleemax at 9:52 AM on April 24, 2001


As someone who is currently working in public affairs (similar to public relations, but more legislative and government related), I am intrigued by Christina's website, especially her "Rumor Mill."

Try as she might, Christina always seems to come off unpolished -- like a girl with really nice nails but who dons a 10k necklace that says "Christi", replete with cubic zirconiums.

I suspect that Mrs. Aguilera is doing a lot of the PR handling for Christina. She obviously has a great deal of tact and media savvy, as evidenced by the classy letter to a high school senior.
posted by jennak at 10:08 AM on April 24, 2001


I don't think anyone is saying that we should stay up at night, worrying about Christina Howeveryouspellhername, but rather that maybe if people weren't freakish jerks to other people, we'd all be better off? Celebrities are just people. So they shouldn't be worshipped just as much as they shouldn't be abused. I wouldn't go up to the average person on the street and be offensive to them, so why should I do so to a celebrity?
And then of course we have morons calling people "Ho's" because they choose to wear makeup and hair that's different than what we usually see.
posted by Doug at 10:10 AM on April 24, 2001


mbawiz, I seriously doubt leaving celebrity behind is as easy as you make it sound -- i.e. quit giving interviews, put on a pair of jeans and a sweatshirt, etc. I think you forget that musicians are are generally tied to long-term contracts that are heavily weighed towards the record companies, that make most of the money and are loathe to just let profitable acts quit when they can still squeeze money out of them. Courtney Love's (in)famous speech on the matter is on holemusic.com.

Once you're recognizable, you will be recognized for the rest of your life, and will be talked about no matter what you do -- even if you quit showbiz. Before Gary Coleman started working for IGN.com, he was a security guard, and tabloids ran stories on his being a security guard because people wanted to know about his life as a security guard. And then there's Monica Lewinsky, who didn't even want to become famous -- she can't even go to a party without it being talked about in a gossip column.
posted by lia at 10:43 AM on April 24, 2001


I didn't hear about Gary Coleman for years, and years and years, and then I heard he was a security guard, and then he was one some TV show making fun of himself, and then he was in a movie, making fun of himself, and then he was in a commercial (making fun of himself).

I didn't hear about Monica Lewinsky for quite a few months after the trial was finally over, and then she was on the Tom Green Show, and then she was interviewed on CNN or Entertainment Television or something or other for her purse business and then just last month she was on the cover of Yahoo! Internet Life.

Seems to me like those are the activities of two people who aren't exactly trying to stay out of the media's eye.

Which isn't necessarily me disagreeing with your general statement, I do agree that sometimes it can be hard to fade out of celebrity, I just think you used some pretty bad examples. :-)
posted by cCranium at 11:05 AM on April 24, 2001


"It's very, very easy for those in comfortable, normal, routine lives to gossip, criticize, pass judgement."


Oh shut up you spoiled brat!!!!!

If she didn't want her daughter to be treated like a piece of meat then she shouldn't have let her daughter get into a career where people always get treated like pieces of meat. Duh.

It's hard work and often no matter how much you care .... you get turned up noses and criticism."

It's freakin' fame and fortune God damn it!!!! But even that's not enough??? You also want everyone to be kind and understanding? What a load of crap.

Lots of people in this world have it pretty hard. Christina Aguilera doesn't.

She has to work even though she's sick? BFD, so do most people. Especially when they have to pay bills to feed a family.

Just stay in your freakin' mansion shut up!
posted by y6y6y6 at 11:58 AM on April 24, 2001


anyone who makes that(insert dollar amount here) kind of money should have no issues with anonymity. does s. robson walton attract screaming crowds everywhere he goes? i would hazard a guess and say NO.

a celebrity is made by their PR staff. don't like the limelight? then turn it off.
posted by donkeysuck at 12:28 PM on April 24, 2001


Personally I think the argument about the rich and famous having to be 'on' all the time is pretty valid. History is replete with stories of performing artists who couldn't handle the pressure of having to be all things to all people. Like poor Tony Hancock.

Trouble is, and I know you're all going to disagree with this, everyone has to be 'on' all the time. We all at some time or other try to conform to other people's ideas of us, be it at work or the home. You have to, otherwise you'd end up being rude, insensitive with all kinds of people who should be important to you.

Although I'm no fan of her music (although I bought 'Genie in a Bottle' in my weekly russian roulette at the single section of the Virgin Megastore), I can image that in media saturated times like this, it must be hard to keep up a certain image. The fact this guy caught her on an 'off' day proves what can happen if you let your guard down for a second, especially when cameras are flashing when your stylist made the wrong choice. People can't forget because they can instantly have access to your mistakes.

So actually, it was pretty brave of the girl's mum to e-mail a reply to her daughter's critic. It's the net equivallent of the author creeping onto 'That Was The Week That Was' to give Bernard Levin a punch on the nose. I'm surprised some artists who can't seem to do anything right in the eyes of the critics don't do it more often.
posted by feelinglistless at 2:39 PM on April 24, 2001


It's interesting seeing the cult of celebrity that breaks out in America (I'm guilty of it too).

I've seen a parallel in Jamaica, where a guy who was a top selling musical artist (basically the equivalent of a Billboard Top 10 type on a MUCH smaller scale) walked down the street and it was no biggie. Yeah, a couple people said "Hey", "What's Up" but it wasn't like the mad rush of screaming, heaving flesh you would most likely see here if someone like Britney Spears went out to the supermarket to pick up some roast beef.
posted by owillis at 3:07 PM on April 24, 2001


Although it seems like the celebrity's were blameless in this situation, its hard to decide who to blame for the insane popularity and idol-related problems celebrities have. I think the only true evil is the record companies and managers who morph unsuspecting "MTV is cool" kids into pop stars. Its funny, the mother talks about how horrible it is to be cursed by having their popularity dictated by how well they adhere to a certain image, while some celebrities' popularity only comes from trying to revolt against an image. I guess the answer is that popularity sucks either way and the only true happiness comes from being a rich nerd.
posted by Rootnode at 4:31 PM on April 24, 2001


Yes.
posted by owillis at 4:33 PM on April 24, 2001


I hate that picture of Bill Gates. It's apparently supposed to symbolize him as some kind of genius inventor; an idea man. But a much more true-to-life symbolism would be to show him stealing lightbulbs from other people and selling them as his own.
posted by Potsy at 5:17 PM on April 24, 2001


gleemax: There was a following title in my second comment. I'm really quite enjoying this.

potsy: BillyG looks like a carebear.
posted by holloway at 5:49 PM on April 24, 2001


Potsy, that would suck, because you wouldn't know how much of their life expectancy the bulbs had left. You know how sometimes you change a bulb and then it blows almost right away? I hate that. You think Bill Gates is involved with that somehow? DAMN YOU BILL GATES!
posted by rodii at 5:51 PM on April 24, 2001


She knew was she was getting into, blah blah.

Actually, given her youth, I doubt she did. It's her mother (parents?) who should have known better.

-mars
posted by Mars Saxman at 6:00 PM on April 24, 2001


Now, now, we all know she's doing this just so she can get bread and water on the kitchen table... and caviar, and $200 apiece dinner plates... and lots of sizeable venison meals...
posted by GirlFriday at 6:52 PM on April 24, 2001


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