Saturday, February 27, 2010
Famous Like Justin Bieber
When I was a kid all I wanted to do was become famous. I've blogged about this before.
I called local drama camps and acting schools in hopes of becoming the next 1980s child star, the next Missy (Benson star pictured on left) or Tracey Gold (Growing Pains star pictured on right). It never happened. Not only was I slightly chubby, my parents didn't have the money or time it would have taken to help shoot me to stardom.
We were lucky to live a mere 45 minute train ride to Manhattan, audition runs would have been ideal! My mom worked full-time during the week which didn't make sense to me until I matured into a teen and realized two salaries beat one. Thanks to Mom, my first four years of college didn't cost me a dime nor did my first four cars. Looking back it really worked out OK for me--this blog entry isn't about regret or blame.
In fact, maybe Mom was both realistic and protective. I bet she didn't want to see me deal with the high level of rejection involved in show biz. We didn't have extra money laying around for head shots or a talent agent--that money was saved for sleep-away camp and private school tuition. My folks took us on awesome vacations, to the movies on weekends, dinners out, theme parks and planned kick-ass birthday parties for us at Hot Skates.
Back to Justin Bieber, my inspiration for composing this entry. If I were 12-years-old right now, I'd be really, really freakin' pissed. Apparently this kid from Canada rose to stardom as an Internet sensation. A gazillion people liked his YouTube performances which he says "were supposed to be just for family." Lucky for Justin Bieber he caught the eyes and ears of Usher.
Yeah, so like after seven months of viral videos Justin Bieber is huge today. Singing for President Obama, participating in the updated version of "We Are The World" and selling out gigs all over the place.
So why would a 12-year-old me be really pissed right now? Because damn it, we didn't have the Internet when I was a kid and if we did, I'd make videos of myself singing and dancing. I too might have been an overnight sensation! Yes indeed, I'd make fan pages for myself on Facebook and tweet and Twitpic until my fingers fell off. Nope, instead I was stuck in 1985 sending snail mail to Sean and Mackenzie Astin's mom Patty Duke, asking for advice on being a star like her and her sons.
On any given summer day, you'd find me prancing around our front lawn in my dance recital costumes singing songs from Annie. Our main street--so main it was an exit off of the Southern State Parkway on Long Island--was my audience! If we had Flip cameras instead of the Kodak Disc, my BFF Dawn could have made videos of my antics. Damn you Justin Bieber, that coulda been me up there on stage with billions and billions of fans. So enjoy every minute of your Internet-found fame, kid and know there's a jealous former child star wannabe living in Jersey who wouldn't mind a mere fraction of the success you've scored.