Just Another Effin' Observer

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Location: Huntsville, Texas, United States

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

The Last Time I Saw Paris…

I had promised myself that I would never, ever, mention Paris Hilton on this blog, but my promises haven’t been worth bupkis since I told my agent that I would never take a job in New York, and that I would never work on a Macintosh – and then spent the better part of two years writing Mac code for a company in Manhattan (and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world).

So why am I changing my mind? It’s hard to explain, really, but I suppose the answer might lie somewhere between the phrase, “target of opportunity”, and CBS News’ reason for rushing the Rather memos onto 60 Minutes Wednesday: “too good not to run with”. I can’t define it, I can’t explain it, but Paris Hilton has a certain je ne sais qua: there is an indefinable quality about her that just makes you want to smack her like a piñata full of Krugerrands.

One commenter on the Knowledge Is Power blog characterized Paris as “…famous for being rich, stupid and easy to nail”. All of which of course is true, but what comes to my mind when I think of Paris Hilton is an obscure line from Arthur Hailey’s novel Hotel (how's that for irony?), about a minor character in the story: “Her brains are in her tits; the only problem is, they’re not connected.”

Okay, I can see, for all that I am alarmingly close to being eligible for membership in the AARP, that Ms. Hilton would have a certain visceral appeal to a particular demographic, but let’s assume for the moment that you have graduated from middle school; as that magical moment at the apex of puberty (and you guys know what I’m talking about) recedes into the past, the allure becomes ever more incomprehensible. What, pray tell, is so sexy about this vapid prima facie evidence that blonde jokes aren’t jokes, after all?

There has to be something I can point to and say, “This is why she’s famous.” But what could that something be? The fact that she’s obscenely wealthy? Big tap-dancin’ whoop; she didn’t earn a nickel of it. She’s beautiful? Well, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so behold. Now that’s beautiful! She’s talented? I never saw the sex video, so I can’t judge her in that particular talent contest, but I did see this. Fine, so she can eat a hamburger and wash a car; hey, it’s a skill, like anything else. But can she do both at the same time? The evidence is inconclusive on that point.

Oh, how I long for the days, not so very long ago, when the words ‘Paris Hilton’ conjured up an image of an overpriced chain hotel on the Champs Elyssee. Instead, VH-1 treats us to Paris Hilton’s Most Shocking, and we spend the entire program wondering how long it took how many editors to whittle the list down to the mere dozen or so that actually made it into the final cut. Hell, every breath she takes is a shock to me (if only by demonstrating that she has enough cognitive function to do so). VH-1 proclaims in its Web page about the show that Paris is “a lot smarter than you think”. That still leaves them plenty of wiggle-room, frankly; define ‘a lot’. (And you probably don't want to know how I would define the phrase '...than you think'; there are things in my refrigerator that exhibit higher-level cerebral activity.) The page’s blurb ends with what I have to assume is a rhetorical question: “What will she do next?” Actually, it merely serves to beg the more pertinent question, “Who the f*** cares!?” (And for any readers in California, let me assure you that those persistent rumblings you feel beneath your feet are not the San Andreas getting ready to cut loose; it’s Grandpa Conrad spinning in his grave so fast that he’s about to drill himself into another, posthumous, fortune in oil.)

Andy Warhol famously remarked that everyone is famous for fifteen minutes. Well, Paris exhausted her quarter-hour a long time ago; she’s running on my minutes now, and I want ‘em back!


Blogger tommy said...

Heh, i saw it. You didn't miss anything.

8:22 PM  

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