What Price are you willing to pay for Fame?
So you think you want to be famous?
So you think you want to be famous? You think it’s going to be great? You think with fans adoring you, all will be well? You think that more people will respect you? You think that once you are famous everything is going to be just peachy? I hate to burst your bubble but I will share with you what I have learned, this is what it is like to be famous. What price are you will to pay for fame?
First things first - Family - I used to listen when famous people say things like “My family keeps my feet on the ground” or “When things start getting crazy, I like to go home”. I always wondered exactly what that meant. Now I know.
Your family refuses to see you in a different light. To them you are not famous, you are just you. They still look to you to make dinner, wipe noses, change diapers, pick up their junk. Washing their dirty clothes has become a challenge. Why? Because now that you are famous they want to see how many clothes they can dirty. I swear they go and borrow dirty clothes just for you to wash.
Babies don’t care about fame, they still want you to pick them up, they still scream when you are extremely busy. They don’t care who is on the phone, when they want you, they want you now! No waiting, NOW! They are going to get teeth at times when it is not convenient for you. If you have 2 small children one will pick on the other at the most inopportune times, that is a promise and a guarantee you can take to the bank!
Your dogs don't care that you are famous. You might have had them before getting famous and now that you are, they are still going to eat your shoes, pee on your furniture and do whatever it is that dogs to. They REALLY don't care if you are famous.
Friends - These are the ones who probably helped to make you famous but they still see you as who you were before getting famous. They still have their problems they need you to help them with. They will still call you, and expect you to call them. More than likely on a daily basis. They might understand for a while that you are busy, will wait a little while for you to call. But it is guaranteed if you don’t do something to keep the friendship alive it will wither. Friends need you, if you aren't there they will find a new 'bestie'.
Fans - if you don’t keep your fans happy what is going to happen? You will lose them, fans are fickle. They really do love to be stroked. If you don’t keep doing what it was that you did to get them, you will lose them. Someone new will come along and replace you. They may still love you, but you are easily put on the back burner.
The Big Wigs
The Big Wigs - These are the ones who gave you your chance in life. The ones who looked at you and decided that you might be worth some of their time. These folks have to be kept happy as well. If you don’t keep up to your performance they will cut you quicker than you can say ‘Jack Robinson’. They need you to make them money. If you begin to slip a little, you will be replaced. It’s that simple.
The Paparazzi - Why do you need them? You need to remain in the limelight. Plain and simple. You have to show your face once in a while so they can get a good picture. If your fame starts slipping a little bit all you have to do is something stupid for them to capture on film. It may not be good fame, but it’s fame nonetheless. It gets your face out there once again. Your ‘off again’ fans will see your picture on the tabloids and look up what work you have completed lately. Maybe even going back to the things they liked to begin with. This may make the big wigs some money and bring you back to the limelight again.
Can you handle the pressure?
So you think you want to be famous? Are you sure you can handle the pressure? Will your family understand when you have to cancel plans once again? Are the babies going to wait while you do what it is that you do? Will your friends be there when you need them if you haven‘t called them in years? Are your fans going to wait for you to do something else? Will the big wigs still keep you in mind after you’ve taken a break from the fame? Will the Paparazzi catch you in a good picture for once?
The money? Ahhh yes, that is what you were into it for wasn’t it? The money MUST be great! You’ve heard and read about all the money to be made for being famous!! Shall I tell you where the money goes?
Well first you are going to need an agent. Any good Agent wants between 10 and 15% of your earnings. Why? Because they got you in the limelight to begin with! They did all the wheeling and dealing to get you seen! They made the phone calls to the people ‘in the know’. They were the ones who would look bad if you tanked. It was their good reputation on the line.
Next you’re going to need an assistant. This is an important person! He/she is the one who makes your appointments and sees that you are there on time. The one who carries around the calendar for the birthdays and anniversaries that you might miss. The one who makes sure that you are dressed appropriately for the occasion you need to be at. This person will expect to be paid and paid well, after all his/her life is going to be yours now. They are going to be at your beck and call 24 hours a day.
Your Housekeeper - This person will make sure that your house is up to par for company. You will have visitors, and you certainly can’t have them coming over to dirty diapers all over, or clothing strewn in places that you didn’t know existed. You are busy, you will need one of these. If you have children they might double as a care giver. This person will expect to be paid well because he/she is living in your home and believes that you have gazillions of dollars at your disposal. Your secrets will need to be kept by someone trustworthy, good pay usually ensures that! If you don’t pay them well you more than likely are going to see pictures of your messy house or heathen children on the cover of the tabloids. Or any other things you might be doing behind closed doors!
Your Clothier - You can no longer shop at Walmart or Kmart for your clothing! Why? Well first you are going to feel that you have earned fancy expensive clothes. After a while you will be expected to wear designer clothing. You may have a personal shopper, your assistant will explain to them what type of clothing will be needed and when. They will bring you more items than you really need for you to try on. Some you may want to keep for future use. This person will of course expect to be paid as well as the clothing you have need of.
Security - You will need one or two people to help keep you safe. Your fans may get out of control and accidentally hurt you just trying to touch you. These people will keep you safe from harm. Having bodyguards or Security people are not going to come cheaply. If you’ve received hate mail (it happens) or even mail from a stalker (someone who loves you to death) you will need security.
Drivers - Of course you can’t be expected to show up driving that Buick! You need a nice Limousine service to attend certain functions. Your driver will of course wait for you and will expect to be paid if you give them a nice tip they will make sure the next time foods and beverages are well stocked in the car. Tips also ensure that secrets are kept, what you do in the back of the Limo will stay in the back, if you tip well.
Accountants - Yes, these are important! Making sure one is trust worthy is more so, why? They are the ones who handle your money. They make sure your bills are paid, but more importantly, your taxes. They send out the checks to your Agent, your assistant, your clothier, your Limousine service, your every day living expenses are paid by your Accountant. You now may have to hire someone to make sure all of these things are being taken care of. Just look at what happened to Nicolas Cage and Willy Nelson! You don't want that do you?
What is left of you?
What is left for you or of you for that matter? Now you can’t even go out to shop in private because the fans you need, will surround you. The Paparazzi will be taking pictures of you entering or leaving the store, making that surprise you were planning (for a loved one) out in the open. When you go home to visit family and friends you will be surrounded by those who aren’t that close and want just a piece of you or your time.
Ask yourself - Is it worth it?
Now you have to ask yourself, Is it worth it? Is the price you have to pay worth all of the fame and fortune? Do you still want to be famous? Do you still want to see your name in lights? Will your family and friends wait for you? Will they drop everything they had planned when you decide you have time for them?
What price are you willing to pay for fame? Are you willing to give up everything you have come to know and love? Are you capable of balancing all of it and still keep your sanity intact? You’ve heard the phrase “It’s lonely at the top”, can you make sure that when you get to the top, you still have someone who Loves you? Or will you be looking down at all of the heads you’ve trampled on to get there?