Friday, January 27, 2006

The Truth Emerges....Mostly

I better come clean. You know the “Folsom Prison” incident? The Pete’s meltdown? Didn’t happen. Or parts of it didn’t happen. I did go to the bar with Courtney. Drank a vodka tonic and a Smirnoff Ice (just one, not two). And I did dance with a 20-something hipster. No, rewind. “Dance” might imply too much motor coordination on my part. I shuffled around with a 20-something hipster. He dipped me at the end. But I didn’t succumb to a watery fit of heartbreak on the dance floor. I actually had a pretty good time. I like Cash.

Here’s another confession: I’m not ashamed of my lies. I wouldn’t have spun this Pete’s tale to, say, Jesus. But I figure you’re not Jesus. More likely, you are: 1) a friend or 2) a stranger. If you’re a friend, then you know of my tendency to wax histrionic. Witness September’s skin irritation: “Eczema,” Wynne said, “not leprosy.” If you’re a stranger, I doubt you care enough to chastise me. Don’t you have better things to do?

But okay, I know Oprah would be upset. This morning, Friend (formerly Boyfriendish) forwarded me two articles (this one and this one)about Oprah’s showdown with James Frey, author of the memoir-oops!-novel A Million Little Pieces. In case you haven’t heard, Oprah recently unleashed major pre-primetime venom on the author, calling him an embarrassment and a “liar.” I didn’t watch this unpleasantness, but Hillary Frey, author of the article, called it “a little creepy.” I can imagine. What happened to fuzzy, dishy, Your Spirit-celebrating Oprah? Good thing we have Dr. Phil in the next timeslot.

Hillary Frey (apparently unrelated to James, or at least not admitting any kinship) claims Oprah’s audience stood by the Wo-man, cheering and clapping with every verbal shot. Again, not hard to imagine. I’m guessing Oprah bet her audience would happily accept her apology for initially endorsing James Frey. After all, forgiveness is spiritually healthy. And the audience got a real two-for-one deal: a little Oprah, a little Jerry Springer. No, no, Oprah, we’re sorry we cannot express more affection. You go, girl!

Lying is bad. I think we all agree. James Frey made a mistake and, contrary to my previous post, I believe mistakes should be avoided (ah, what a tangled and troubled web of deceit she weaves!). However....surely someone appreciates the irony -- a larger-than-life TV icon castigating an author for inflating his life. Generally, don’t Americans like reality to be as unreal as possible? A few months ago, Oprah’s audience cheered as Tom Cruise hopped on a couch, shrieking like a banshee. Unreality at its finest. Oprah repeatedly announced that Tom had “gone crazy!” Could be. Or maybe Tom, like James Frey, got a little “confused.” Here’s the deal, Lt. Maverick: we might treat you like a character in an ongoing wacky soap opera, but you aren’t really fictional. You’re supposed to act like an honest-to-god human, not Yosemite Sam.

Perhaps it’s okay to confuse fact with fiction, as long as you don’t write anything down.

Alternately, warping reality might be fine, just do it on television. “Reality TV” enjoys more popularity than ever, despite the inherent oxymoron. This is the true story of seven highly toned, attractive and hormonal strangers picked to live in an exquisitely decorated, liquor-equipped, three-story house and work top-notch spots in the record/clothing/clubbing industry....We call this “The Real World.” Duh. I mean, doesn’t this scenario describe the day-to-day existence of your friends?

You won’t catch me hatin’ on reality TV. I watch more “ _____ With Celebrities” shows than anyone I‘ve met. It makes me happy seeing Master P cha-cha alongside George Hamilton. I’m entertained.

Which, to me, is the whole point.

Or, 90% of the point anyway -- if I’m being honest.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

great writing! a fan

6:46 PM  

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