One of the many things my wife and I share is a minor sense of showmanship. Ok, maybe more than minor. This Christmas Eve we both serenaded each other and her family for a while on the Karaoke machine. Though my attempt at Alanis Morrissette's "You oughtta know" (a dare from my wife) was truly a disaster.
But aside from that, we always seem to sneak ourselves in front of crowds. Along with blogging (at the "Wow, look how humble he is" named WilliamKWolfrum.com among other sites), I've been an announcer and the host of a street festival among other things. I'm even toying with the idea of creating a bare-bones podcast. And my wife, well, one time on a cruise ship ... wait, that one deserves its own post. Remind me to write about it some day to my wife's dismay).
But I was thinking about this and thought about how the Internet has just become a haven for those like me who were raised in a culture where being a star of some sort is the ultimate way of having value.
It can be as simple as when I was playing baseball and would adopt new stances based on players I worshiped (the ugliest was when I, a right-hander, adopted George Brett's stance. To a modicum of success, but technically awful. Normally I stayed with a hybrid Fred Lynn/Willie Stargell set up at the plate.
It can be as complex and devastating as girls killing themselves to stay thin like their favorite actress.
But the ray of sunshine on us poor souls who have been brought up to believe that fame is everything, and refuse to disbelieve it, even at a subatomic level, is that the Internet is here. For those of us who can't resist a pulpit, we have the ultimate one at our disposal.
I still have high hopes for the Internet. I truly believe that if our government is ever to be reined in and cease to be an oligarchy run by the privileged few, it will be because more and more people will have kept getting more and more informed of their own country and other countries on the Internet. We must work to keep the Internet from those that want it controlled and watched.
I guess, in the end, I think it's somewhat funny (in a liberal conspiricist sort of way) is that the TV shows and movies that helped put a few generations to sleep will indirectly help wake them up. After all, we all saw "Erin Brockovich," right (in Julia Roberts' Oscar-winning turn)? We know one person can make a difference. Years of insipid programming later, we have finally found something of value from it all - the secret and shameful desire to be like the insipid people on the insipid programs.
Few of us really want to be "stars" of any type (The experience on the cruise ship with my wife proved that to me. Seriously, it's a really good story). But with a stage set for us, most are willing to have their say. And more and more are joining the choir.
December is surefire in its ability to make you think of the future. One of my great hopes is that the Internet continues to reach more and more people, and connect more and more of them until the majority of the planet knows what their rulers are doing. I'd like to watch what happens then.