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2/15/2007

I’m gonna petition to rename the Planet Fitness in Orange, CT the “Anna Nicole Memorial Center.” ‘Cause every time I go there, her face is plastered over every frickin’ television set. It’s worse than being stuck on the “It’s A Small World” ride at Disney on acid.

I feel like the only person in the nation right now who doesn’t care about Anna Nicole Smith. Not that I’m ever happy when someone buys the farm before their time, but c’mon now… let’s be realistic about this gal.

We’re talking about a woman whose greatest accomplishment was, in all honesty, posing naked for Playboy. And when you look at her résumé, that was perhaps the most wholesome thing she has ever done. And I do mean ever. Where should we begin? The marriage to the nonagenarian millionaire, the horrid reality show, the questionable weight loss, the classless announcement of her pregnancy on her website, her son’s passing, the questionable nature of her babydaddy, and I’m fairly certain she was involved in that Tylenol tampering scandal back in the 80’s. Did she really contribute anything to society other than causing a lot of people a lot of pain and frustration?

Point is, point is, why is mass media making such a huge deal about her passing? I understand the basic answer: it’s news. She was known (inexplicably despite a complete lack of talent), now she’s gone. OK, fair enough. Cover her passing.

But for serious people, I don’t think Saddam Hussein’s execution got this much coverage. Not to say he deserved to be posthumously revered, but considering how his capture was such a visible government initiative, don’tcha think there would’ve been more news about it?

Mother Theresa, Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford, all of them are taking a backseat to Anna Nicole and her ginormous yahoos.

What’s that you say? They weren’t celebrity-status figures? Oh, now it makes perfect sense.

So long as there’s a breath in my body, I will never understand the public’s need to gush over low-talent, low-rent celebrities. I feel like most of America spends an unhealthy amount of time reading about other people’s lives instead of focusing on their own. How is it that we value ourselves so little that we feel the need to live vicariously through a bunch of pencil-thin, unrefined, overly tan divas will forever be a Rubix Cube to me. I can’t get the damn colors to line up in my head and probably never will.

What gets me the most about this phenomenon (I call it the Hilton Factor, because it seems that Paris Hilton’s presence on this planet has only accelerated this morbid fascination) is that it’s not restricted to entertainment publications or websites. It’s everywhere, people. Hell, I’ve practically just stated that I don’t understand the Hilton Factor, nor do I follow it. I don’t have a subscription to People or Us Weekly, and my impulse buys at the Stop & Shop checkout lane are limited to M&M’s and Chapstick.

So why was I able to list every single one of Anna Nicole’s atrocities? Because much like her cleavage, you can’t miss them. Even big time news networks like CNN and Fox News have reported heavily on every one of her moral misdeeds, and now said networks spending an inordinate amount of time covering this “tragedy.”

I use the quotes because, let’s face it, did anyone out there really think that this woman would make it past 40? Living hard like she apparently did on such a regular basis is bound to catch up with you, so even if drugs or alcohol wasn’t the immediate cause of her demise, it’s a fairly safe bet that they were connected in some fashion.

I think what gets me most about this is the fact that Anna Nicole Smith didn’t contribute a damn thing to anybody. Think about it… did she really enrich anyone’s lives? I don’t mean to get on my moral high horse here, but c’mon, people. Did this woman leave a lasting impression short of catering to young men’s masturbatory fantasies in the early 90’s and then giving them all STD’s some ten years later? She didn’t do much of anything. This seems to be a qualification of the Hilton Factor… you don’t really have to do much of anything. You just have to be out in public. A lot. In front of droves of cameras. Wearing next to nothing. Probably inebriated.

When you look at it that way, the only thing that’s missing for concubines are the cameras.

But I can understand honoring certain celebrities for their achievements upon their untimely passing. Christopher Reeve? He strove for stem cell research. Steve Irwin? He educated our youth and engaged them. John Belushi? He simply made us smile.

Anna Nicole? My slate’s as blank as her Oscar Nomination tally.
And what has she left behind? A baby girl, two to four possible fathers, a whole boatload of cash she didn’t earn and a black eye to news media that’ll take a long time to stop swelling.

Yeah, I know. I must sound callous writing all this, but I just gotta call a spade a spade. Untimely or not, I just don’t see the reason to plaster this gal’s face on the TV screen any more than it already has been.

Frankly, I was more torn up about the fact that they used multiple dogs for the role of Lassie. Way to screw up childhood mainstays, Hollywood.

Goodnight, and have a pleasant tomorrow.