Posts Tagged ‘susan boyle’

Susan Boyle, revisited

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

So after her runner-up finish in Britain’s Got Talent, Susan Boyle has been admitted to a hospital for “exhaustion”—the British tabloids are reporting some heartbreaking details, and even if the specifics aren’t true (you never know with the tabloids), the nervous breakdown probably is. As a senior doctor at Boyle’s clinic notes, sudden fame is not without its dangers, and it’s an open question whether the reality-TV shows are prepared to address this and deal with its implications by providing adequate support networks/guardrails.

Actually, I’d say it’s more of a settled question:  they’re not.  None of us are, really.  Same reason this story is way less popular than the First Susan Boyle Saga.  As of this writing, it’s not in the Twitter heavy-rotation. . . and why should it be?  We’ve turned the Internet into the equivalent of one big junior high school, where popularity is everything, and all that matters is how many “friends” you have and how many cameras are pointed your way. It’s part of our fairy-tale view of life. . we believe in princesses, but if those princesses get chased by paparazzi into concrete walls, then we just go ahead and damn the photographers instead of wondering who the hell was looking at those photos. More than fifteen centuries ago, the former Roman emperor Diocletian refused to come out of retirement, saying to his erstwhile imperial colleague, “if only you could see the cabbages I grow with my own hands in my garden, you wouldn’t ask this of me.”  Rare it is that a public figure finds such peace.