Celebri-spiral™: Enough Already

Our culture is in a celebri-spiral. We're conflicted over our ridiculous, growing celebrity culture consumption via magazines, websites, and TV shows. In 2007, my love/hate conflict made me take to the blog-o-sphere. All writing on this site © Dave Singleton 2009.

Saturday, February 3, 2007

February 3, 2007: Traveling with The New York Post, and Other Bad Habits

Everyone has some travel ritual that wouldn't hold up under scrutiny. In addition to boarding pass, bottled water, and walkman (shield against crying children), mine is celebrity crap. What's yours?

I headed to Scottsdale, Arizona, today. True to form, I carried ten magazines and newspapers with me, including The New York Post and the latest In Touch. At $1.99, it's really the only tabloid bargain. So, at least I am not blowing big bucks on this bad habit. Now, if you want to bust me for the cost of my wasted time, then let's talk.

But I digress. I am trying to remember the last flight in which the plane took off without my nose stuck in Page Six, People, or In Touch. It's almost a dual launch: aircraft into sky and me, into the netherworld of the rich and famous. Once we're above the clouds, I return to "normal" and read non-celebrity books and magazines, watch the in-flight movie, and write. Maybe I chat with a fellow passenger, but you know how we are these days.

Do other people have takeoff rituals, too?

As I walked onto the flight today, I observed the habits of others before being told to fasten our seat belts; some stared into space, some munched junk food and kicked back drinks, and others, like me, read pop culture magazines. One thirty-something, professional-looking lady, with The National Star in her lap, looked guilty as our eyes met. I gave her a knowing. understanding nod. It's OK, honey. It happens. You'll do better tomorrow.

Is it comfort, habit, superstition, or some combination, that keeps us tied to individual travel traditions? Post 9/11, traveling is more stressful than ever. Old habits, regardless how born, die hard. And almost all of us are superstitious in some form. The airlines are, too. There's no row 13, ever notice? So you can argue that whatever gets you through the night, and into flight, is alright.

But my weeks of questioning celebrity gave me pause before purchasing the New York Post today. Then I saw the inside lineup-rock-star Hillary banging her fist during a speech, Liz Hurley and sexy models at a Jordache Jeans kickoff, and Cindy Adams' recap of the bold-faced names who've garnered ink in 2007. I put my money down. I guess this habit is better than loading up on twinkies or mini-Vodkas. But maybe one day, as the engines rev up and the pilot tells us to "ready for takeoff," I'll be immersed in a book by the Dalai Lama or David McCullough, proof that celebrity immersion is off my pre-flight checklist.


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