Stardom Isn’t A Profession; It’s An Accident

Our unhealthy obsession with all things “celebrity” always makes me a tad uneasy particularly as anyone who has enjoyed fifteen minutes of fame in the bright media spotlight is routinely overnight awarded the esteemed title of “star”; a term which is liberally thrown around these days like confetti. I have always held the belief that it is something which is earned over time with genuine talent rather than an automatic reward for a brief appearance on a reality television programme.

I associate the term “star” with the golden glamorous age of Hollywood when Bette Davis, Marilyn Monroe, Lauren Bacall and my particular favourite, Ava Gardner graced the silver screen. The frocks were classically stylish and a glimpse of shoulder or cleavage was considered daring. Their private lives were discreet no doubt strictly controlled by the film studios PR departments endeavouring to make their stable of actors behave in accordance with the stringent morals clauses in their contracts. One has to ask whether their inaccessibility made them more attractive and enigmatic to the public than the readily available intimate details of those now featured between the glossy pages of magazines.

I frequently admit to not knowing anyone headlining the showbiz pages of a national newspaper and magazines but then again neither will I be rushing out the door anytime soon to buy any celebrity endorsed products. I do, however, wonder about their influence over impressionable and gullible young people.

It appears that column inches in national newspapers are guaranteed in exchange for fewer inches when it comes to attire. Surely most celebrity party organisers nowadays must be unsure what to print in the dress code section of an invite; dress optional? Is less really more? Have many publicity hungry celebrities made a deal with the devil by exchanging elegance and integrity for sensational headlines? Regrettably, we live in times where an indiscreet picture can earn someone a substantial pay-day from salacious tabloid newspapers therefore encouraging outrageous behaviour from many. Sadly, it may not be long before some celebrities attend parties and nightclubs entirely naked and not only will it have become the norm but as jaded tabloid readers we will no longer care.

Here’s a much-treasured picture of my teenage mum with the actress Beryl Reid (best known for The Killing of Sister George) who during this particular public appearance clearly knew the importance of an elegant fashion statement and was mightily upset when someone cut a four-inch square out of the back of her magnificent dress as a memento.

Beryl 2

22 thoughts on “Stardom Isn’t A Profession; It’s An Accident

  1. Ohhhhh.,..you’ve gone and done it now Tink. I am of the ‘less is more’ crowd, and I DEPLORE nude for nude’s sake, and sex for sex sake, film. I think CLASS went out of Hollywood when the sirens of the 40,50s, and 60s were thought to be “old”. I DESPISE what’s happened to the movies. I FUME at the fact that my kids and their kids won’t grow up with a ‘hero’ like Errol Flynn and a heroine like ‘diva without being a bitch’ like Bette Davis and Eva Gardner…they do NOT know what they are missing! I thank God I grew up knowing, loving, appreciating the actors and actresses of my time…today, well I can name many I watch that impress me with acting talent…but NONE who impress me with personal character. That photo above is fabulous and I LOVE the fact that your Mum is in it! What a time to be alive. What a time to remember. What a shame to know it’ll never be that way again.

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    • Give me an old b&w melodrama any day! When my mum was a student nurse in Birmingham the big bands were still touring all the local ballrooms and nurses were always given free tickets as most of the celebrities making their public appearances liked publicity shots taken with them so I think she’s had a photo taken with a few but she’s very young in this one.

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      • It’s a wonderful keepsake to be sure! I often think I was born in the wrong time…war is not a romantic thing, nor wartime something to wish for…that’s not it. It’s just that time in our history, our human history, when I think I’d have been more of what I could be…more of what I already am. Does that make sense?

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  2. I agree with all of your laments and can add another perspective. Not only celebrities, but everyone who posts a selfie of themselves naked or in a compromising position OR posts photos of their minor children doing anything deemed “funny” “embarrassing” “shameful” “adorable” etc etc for shock value or to garner more clicks and likes with the goal being to “go viral”- that irks me too! Lovely picture, btw, Class isn’t valued, that’s for sure! Lovely post again!!!

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  3. I 100% agree! Every year I become more disenchanted with the needy and attention-seeking Hollywood crowd. There’s no self-restraint, just self-absorption. Dignity and Hollywood can’t seem to co-exist. Naturally, there are exceptions but they’re so few and far between and they aren’t the ones “in the news.” The young are impressionable and sadly the role models they turn to are people who have not yet “grown up” themselves. … Our society is soft on stupidity. It may come back to bite, if not us, the generations to follow.

    On that happy note … hello!!! I haven’t seen your posts because the notifications somehow end up in my junk mail box. Grrrr … Do you post them to Facebook? … I happened to peruse the junk mail today to see what I’m missing and there you were! So glad to have caught up with you. Hope you are well. Great post as usual. 🙂

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    • Happy New Year, Dorothy to you and your lovely boy! I have to be honest and say that I’m only blogging about once a week nowadays and last week not at all so there probably aren’t many notifications about me anymore. When I visited the remote villages in Turkey I remember seeing posters all over their walls of our so-called celebrities so many of these “stars” fail to realise their far-reaching influence on our young people of today and frankly I am sure that we have far better role models out there who have reached achievement through talent and sheer hard work

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      • I would agree … but where’s the sensation in that? 😉 …I was off line mostly the last half of last year while doing my certification course, so was out of touch for the most part too. … Wishing you well in 2015!

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  4. Oh please don’t get me started! It annoys me so much. I have written about this a few times.
    Unfortunately it seems that celebrities are already going around naked… Rihanna wore a net dress (you could see her whole body inc breasts and bum) and Kim Kardashian tried to break the internet with her huge derrier!
    The saddest thing for me is that young people think this is normal and aspire to it.
    I love the photo of your mum. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve said I wish I lived in the 1920’s where women wore long gowns and hats. I would totally love that… beautiful elbow length gloves included 🙂

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