I like to spend time on treadmills and walking, imagining ideas for novels not yet written. One of them this week involved a celebrity couple becoming an item, and wanting to not tell the Press. It wouldn’t be because they were doing anything wrong or bad, simply that they wanted to have a relationship away from the glare of publicity. How long, I wondered, could you go in the modern world without anyone becoming aware you were together?
So, the guy and the girl decide they want privacy. They don’t move in with each other and continue living separate lives. Friends aren’t let in on the secret, and most importantly their agents are none the wiser. Neither go out in public together and if they do, leaving and arriving at places alone becomes de rigeur. After six months of this the couple decide they want to go on holiday: not to a hotel, but a privately booked apartment. The vendor only deals with the guy, and several hours after he arrives his partner (who was in the country, somewhere else) arrives and they spend the next two weeks in bed. Then, the night before the apartment’s due to be re-let? The girl quietly leaves. So, it goes on, and after three years of this someone sees them together and finally joins the dots. The press then decide they’re an item, and then the couple laugh and admit they got married six months previously.
The press, perhaps understandably, go ballistic. It is up to celebrities to play the game. You ‘tip off’ the press, they help promote stuff. They sell this life, and in turn stories shift many, MANY units and create thousands of shares and retweets. That’s how this branch of ‘journalism’ works. Except, it only ever matters if anybody cares to begin with, and that begins with a long and tortuous process of hawking yourself to the highest bidder, prostituting everything you ever do and becoming a soulless, empty husk. After years and years of this it becomes habit, a drug, fix you cannot ignore and that fills every waking thought.
Please don’t feel sorry for people when they have lived their lives in front of a camera. If you’re prepared to sell your wedding pictures to a magazine? Frankly, everything is fair game. If you go out of your way to avoid being in the public eye and people drag you into it? Then, I think, you probably earn more respect, but that’s no excuse for stupidity. If you stick your dick in someone else’s wife and expect an easy ride? It should be no different than the woman who cuckolded their husband. Sometimes, actions have consequences. The fact remains, millions of people feed on other people’s broken and battered personal lives. It’s been this way for HUNDREDS OF YEARS. The only difference now is that more people get to know faster. Salacious gossip was around for Jane Austin, and well before.
If you don’t want to be ‘news’, don’t make it.
If you don’t want people commenting on your personal life, stop fucking publishing it in public.