I don’t subscribe to any gossip magazines, but they always catch my eye while I’m standing in the checkout line at the super market and I have swiped the latest issue of People magazine from my doctor’s office more than once just to finish an article.
My friends and I will text each other when (yet another) famous Hollywood couple has announced their split or when one of our favorite leading ladies and leading men have coupled up or announced they are pregnant
I also enjoy tuning in to Entertainment Tonight and Access Hollywood from time to time because I think it’s amusing and sometimes rather sad “to see how the other half lives.” No matter how productive and satisfying my own life is, there’s something about celebrities.
Maybe it’s because I live in Southern California, but I am fascinated (NOT obsessed!) by celebrities and I know I am not alone.
Why do we focus so much of our attention on Lindsay Lohan’s tragic life, who Kim Kardashian is dating, if Jen will ever find true love, Snooki’s pregnancy, the on-going and ever entertaining Brangelina saga, or what JLo is wearing?
Americans spend millions of dollars a year on tabloid magazines just so we can read about people we don’t know, stories that have zero affect on us, our children, community, or country. Meaningless, trivial knowledge. People magazine does a lot of stories on ordinary people who do extraordinary things, but not on the cover. Celebrities go on the cover because that’s what sells magazines.
“Gossiping about celebrities is a social glue that helps people of different backgrounds, ages and interests bond,” says Zach Stevenson, a marketing manager at the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.
“It’s water-cooler conversation. It removes us from talking about ourselves. I don’t think there’s a single person who doesn’t know who Britney Spears is,” Stevenson says. “It’s a common language. (Celebrities) are people we all know and don’t know. The water-cooler conversation is a good thing. It helps us form that bond.”
Fascination with celebrities and the rich and beautiful is nothing new.
Scientists say primates tend to gaze at their alpha males. In the 1800′s, women in Europe are said to have been known to throw their underwear at renowned musicians.
Celebrity influence over fashion goes way back. Before movie stars set trends, there was the monarchy. The tradition of a white wedding dress is said to have started when England’s Queen Victoria wore one at her wedding in 1840.
Psychologists say it’s human nature to be interested in celebrities. It’s based on our desire to “socialize” and to be connected to other people.
There is a dark side to celebrity fascination. One expert said it’s like a drug, an addictive easy fix. Fans can become fanatics.
I don’t know about you, but I am grateful I am not a celebrity. I couldn’t imagine being watched through a lens and edited down to my darkest and most embarrassing moments in front of the entire world to judge, mock, belittle OR worship.
Are there any celebs that you enjoy following? Do you subscribe to any tabloids or just read them in the check out line?
Photo credit: emiana