Saturday, May 9, 2009

Spotting Celebrities

I am not one to get too excited about seeing a celebrity. I have come to find that the only useful aspect of spotting someone from television or the movies "on the street" is that you have something to talk to others about in social situations. Somehow the topic of spotting celebrities seems to come up often in my circles. Personally, I have not come across too many famous people. Those that I have appreciated seeing the most are the two physics Nobel prize winners that I have met along the way, George Charpak and Horst Störmer. However, I really would not classify these gentlemen as celebrities or really even all that famous. From the world of T.V. (and crappy baseball managers) I once saw Ted Turner walking around the streets of Newport, Rhode Island as I was on my way to work one day in 1976. More recently I was in the airport in Atlanta killing time when the host of a cable decorating show scurried by (but whose name or show escapes me), rushing to get to his connecting flight. I'll admit, these sightings are pretty neat, but not all that meaningful to me in the long run.

The subject matter for this blog came to me as I was listening to a couple of ladies that I know gabble on and on about how they made a rather long trip for the primary purpose of stalking some actor from a show that I had never heard of. Their plan was to drive to his house and wait outside until he showed up. I am not sure what they were going to do once this happened, but it probably amounted to criminal assault. These were two otherwise apparently normal people, driven to complete craziness over even the thought of seeing someone from television. I have heard lots of people who wag their fingers at the paparazzi for following celebrities and staking them out every minute of every day. But the truth is that folks eat this prattle up and swallow every bit and come back for more. However, we need to understand that celebrities are people just like us, trying to live their lives as best they can. Give them space and peace and respect, unless their initials are Paris Hilton, in which case you have my permission to have at them with a garrote.