Monthly Archives: December 2013

Dollars and Sense

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Hello World!

ImageI read recently that Kanye West had likened what he does on stage to the dangers faced by those in the military or the police force. His logic? Well, he could fall off. Really?! I have never been a fan of the whole Kanye showcase anyway but this was ridiculous even for him. I think his music is just ok at best and the personality we see doesn’t seem to have many redeeming qualities. I am hoping for his sake that this is just his public persona and he really is a nice guy, but that seems rather unlikely. By the way there is a really awesome response by the Brimfield police chief – below is a link to it because if you haven’t seen it it is definitely worth a read.

Its a bit scary that you can get paid more money to make a movie than to run a country. We hear the entertainers say that they work really hard, but do they really work any harder than most of us? Yes they have to travel to other locations and have difficult conditions at times, but then so do many other workers and some of those face the very real fear of being kidnapped, killed or injured.

It seems that for many entertainers their sense of self importance inflates with the amount of money they make which, if they can tap into what the masses want, is potentially gazillions. For the rest of us mere mortals however, no matter how hard we work, whether we are the absolute best at what we do or really are putting our lives on the line for our job, we will never see the dollars that people like Kanye West see. I have been to a few concerts recently and each time I am amazed and a little bit dumbfounded at the power these entertainers have over their audience, and the amount of money people are prepared to pay on tickets and branded paraphernalia so these guys can get richer than most of us can imagine. After going with my daughter to see Taylor Swift I was flabbergasted to read that at just twenty four she is worth $55 million, all because she has a good voice and can put some decent songs together.

Another incredible earner is Judge Judy who gets almost $50 million per year for her television show. While she does obviously have some stress associated with her job – there are some absolute doozies who come into her court room – it is obviously nothing like when a judge is presiding over a murder case. These judges get nowhere near the salary she does.  I have to say though, if I was going to be a “celebrity” then Judge Judy’s job would be the one I choose because, as well as the obscene dollars she earns, she is allowed to tell people off when they are annoying her and get paid at the same time!

So are we paying too much to experience what these entertainers have to offer? I guess it depends from what perspective you are seeing it. The actors and singers making an average living working hard at their craft providing entertainment on a less commercialised level still need to be paid enough to survive so cutting music and cinema prices is perhaps not the way to go. I guess some perspective by those earning excessive amounts is what is required here. Lets hope the Kanye’s and the like have some (or at least learn some) of this and share their excessive wealth with the masses because, it is only because of these masses that they are getting this money in the first place.

Til next time…

Jo

Perfect Pout

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Hello World!

I watched an interview with reality television personality Heidi Montag the other day and it struck me how sad her life must be. She was talking about all the plastic surgery she has had, which included ten procedures in one hit, and the regret involved. She went to see the surgeon about one aspect of her face that she wasn’t happy with and this person convinced her that there were other areas needing improvement as well. So she fell victim to the ever growing league who undergo major plastic surgery to fix their “flaws”. From what I could tell in earlier photos Heidi was a very pretty girl before having any surgery and didn’t have obvious  “flaws” that I could see. Sadly however, in succumbing to this pressure to be perfect I think she now looks like a less attractive, unhappy Hollywood clone. She spoke of how she regrets getting so much done, especially so soon. It seems she was not properly counselled by the professionals involved, nor gave it enough consideration herself, that these changes would have a huge impact on her psychologically.

I look at many celebrities and it is obvious that they have spent a lot of money to look like they do, but in many cases I can’t say its an improvement. I am sure many of us would prefer nice smooth skin but when you are looking puffy and plastic with unusually protruding lips and cheeks, I have to ask is this really what we want to see? More often than not the comments we read and hear about people having work done are less than complimentary.

I have no issue at all with bit of tweaking here and there – I sometimes wonder if my eyes may need assistance before they disappear into the saggy business going on around them – and I am all for using make-up and skin care to enhance the features we like or cover up things we are not so keen on. Surely though, at the end of the day you still want to look like you. I had a photo taken last year with a famous celebrity and when I did the obligatory Facebook brag some of my friends asked who it was that I was with because they didn’t recognise her due to some of the “work” she has had done.

I wonder if as a society we will get to the point where we decide that the plastic mould look is not something we consider attractive, or will we just see more of it? Are we going to be walking around like a puffy plastic army? I really hope not. I hope people come to their senses soon and realise that it is often not an improvement, just a change.

I would take my freckly skin, which for so many years I detested, and nearly vanishing eyes any day given the choice to look like Joan Rivers or myself. At least for Joan though, she is a funny person anyway!

Til next time…

Jo

How Old?

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Hello World!

One of my favourite things to do is to read books written by people who have achieved, or are achieving, great things. I find it incredibly motivating and reassuring that the issues we all faceare often the same, regardless of where we come from, and that the big difference is how we deal with them. Recently however, while I was reading what is otherwise a really good book, I found myself getting annoyed by an undertone that it’s the younger people who are the ones that can change the way things are. The author is in a sense alienating a large part of her audience and at the same time ignoring the fact that it is going to take all of us to change the world for the better.

It got me thinking about how much we tend to dismiss other generations, both those older and younger than us. As someone in mid-range (sounds better than middle-aged doesn’t it?) I am beginning to notice a lot of assumptions that come with getting older. Just because you are getting older, doesn’t necessarily mean that you are winding down. It doesn’t mean that you don’t have goals and ambitions. Just as it doesn’t necessarily make you wiser. A twenty year old can display the same wisdom and maturity that we typically attribute to an older person, and an older person can show just as a much as immaturity and stupidity as that often pinned to the younger generations. Look at the old guys marrying young and beautiful women, thinking the girls are in love with them rather than their money. Not a whole lot of sense going on there.

Experience is certainly very valuable, but so is the enthusiasm that comes from doing something new. Age should never be a factor in whether you can do something or not. Well ok maybe it is if you are going to be an elite athlete, but that isn’t on the radar for most of us. Just because you have been around for a while doesn’t mean you are not keen to try new things and totally capable of doing them. In fact you may be more likely to try new things because one thing that age does do, is give you a much better insight into yourself and a confidence to do things without worrying so much what is expected of you. On the same note, we must also make sure we don’t make the assumption that younger people without so much experience are not capable. Because they haven’t been doing something for a long time does not mean they will not be successful at it. 

Similarly, I find it interesting that we feel we can negatively judge what someone chooses to wear based on their age. An older woman, or man for that matter, is scorned for wearing clothing deemed too young, as is a young person for wearing clothing deemed too old or conservative. How about we just go with this: if you feel good dressing a certain way and it fits with your lifestyle, then who cares if it is “age appropriate”. 

I personally am welcoming the movement to increase the retirement age. I hate the thought that in twenty years I am going to be ready to be put out to pasture. I have met many older people who are still doing wonderful things and have no intention of retiring and I certainly aim to be one of them.

As I am finishing this post, I am hearing the news that the world has lost Nelson Mandela. Please let this amazing man be a reminder that anyone of any age, even if they are facing great hardship, can bring greatness to the world. RIP Mr Mandela.

Til next time…

Jo

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