I just learned that Traci Nobles, an otherwise entirely unremarkable cheerleading coach from Georgia, has published an entire book based upon the fact that she received text messages from Anthony Weiner. I’m not kidding about that, either… an entire book has been contrived around a tweeted message of Anthony Weiner’s, er… Anthony. And this brings me to one conclusion:
I think that I need to get involved in a sex scandal.
You chortle at that, but I’m dead serious. It seems like every time somebody or another gets involved in some kind of sex scandal, they nearly immediately skyrocket to fame. Did any of us know or even care who Monica Lewinsky was before she got it on with Bill Clinton? And now look at her! She’s, er… actually, I hear she’s hiding in London, so maybe she’s not a good example. Either way, though, once I manage to get myself involved in one of these, I should be fame and fortune bound!
I’ve got it all worked out: since I’m not exactly National Enquirer material (they like to stick to big name celebrities, which I am not), all I need to do is find someone who is. It isn’t like I need to actually be intimate with any of these people; all Anthony Weiner and Traci Nobles did was send a few creepy text messages back and forth and talk on Skype a bit… and that was an actual scandal which trounced the guy’s entire career! So all I’d need to do to get this rolling is just walk up behind somebody unawares, get my picture taken in a way that vaguely implies that we’re together, sell that photo to a tabloid, and instantly become “Mysterious Guy Friend”. You know exactly what I’m talking about. The headlines would read something like this:
“Taylor Swift was seen coming out of a New York bookstore with a mysterious guy friend…”
The picture would be fantastic: standard fodder, it’d be a grainy, cell phone camera shot of Taylor Swift walking next to some tall guy in sweatpants, a baseball cap and sunglasses. I have considered the possibility of wearing a fake mustache — or growing a real one — but I think that might be taking it too far. After all, I want to eventually be identified.
Once the picture had made the rounds in a few papers, the great tabloid war machine would be unleashed and would start digging up the dirt. They would report that “Mysterious Guy Friend” is actually some dude from New Jersey named AJ, who writes a confusing blog and uses words like “actually” far more than is appropriate. Taylor Swift’s people will release a statement indicating that she has no idea who the person in the picture is, and that she remains in a committed relationship with whoever it is that she’s in a committed relationship with. When asked for comment, my publicist (whom I will hire for this express purpose) will have none.
It’s foolproof, Man! Once the tabloids grab onto that, they’ll start wondering who Taylor Swift’s hanging out with, and it won’t be long before I’ll hit K-Fed-level celebrity and…
Er… okay, maybe Taylor Swift isn’t that great an example here.
The problem is that she’s from the entertainment world. Singers, actors, those kinds of people, have to do quite a bit to hit “scandal” level. Look at Britney Spears’ assorted adventures: I don’t see Jason Alexander benefitting too much from their “scandalous” 55-hour marriage and, though the aforementioned K-Fed did make an album (I think), most of his “fame” occurred while he was actually still married to her. Maybe, just maybe, if I had a twenty year secret affair with an in-the-closet Sean Connery, that’d count as adequately scandalous… but, despite the fact that the book title would be legendary (tell me you wouldn’t buy “Silent Bond: My Secret 20-Year Romance with Sean Connery“), I neither swing that way, nor do I have that kind of time.
Maybe I should stay away from singers and actors, then. What about someone in sports?
Athletes, that’s the way to go! They get huge paychecks, corporate endorsements… and all of these things can come crashing right down in the wake of a scandal (coughcoughTiger Woodscoughcough)! As all that happens, the media attention will be squarely on the person who was part of it.
The problem with athletes, though, is that most of them are, well, athletic. I, conversely, am not athletic. They tend to retire early, too, so most athletes are on the young side, in which case I think it’d come off as more creepy than scandalous that 30-something AJ is leering at young 23-year-old soccer star Alex Morgan.
Alright, I’ll concede that maybe an athlete isn’t the way to go.
Maybe I’m over-thinking this. My first two examples were both politics-based, and politicians are great for that sort of thing: as a society, we hold our politicians up to utterly unrealistic codes of morality, and when they ultimately fail to live up to those codes, we skewer them. Plus, they have a tendency to be slightly, ehrm, less than honest about the details, so everybody turns to the co-scandal-er for the real meat of the story.
You have to be careful with politicians, though. Some of them, like representative Kristi Noem, simply aren’t important enough for a scandal to really matter. Someone like Hillary Clinton has a high enough profile, but she’d get the sympathy vote based on the aforementioned Monica Lewinsky deal, so I’d come across as more a vehicle for revenge than a victim of lust. Plus, she’s not all that easy on the eyes, so I’d get teased by my friends for “only bagging a 3-pointer”, if you know what I mean. I guess that Sarah Palin could work, but she sort of scares me.
Michelle Obama is high profile enough but, while Mitt Romney might do a happy dance, the American public has way too much of a love affair with the first family. I’d fall into the Monica Lewinsky trap, and just become the hussy that broke up the Obamas. I’d try to write a book, have an HBO special, and put out a line of custom handbags, but ultimately I’d just wind up hiding somewhere in England.
I think the issue here is that I’m being too proactive about this. The more determined I am to do this, the less a victim I’ll be and the fewer books I will subsequently sell. Maybe I should take a more passive role: I can befriend a celebrity and then let my considerable charm and down-to-earth-itude work for itself. When things go south, then, I can act all “I thought we had something. She spoke to me with such emotion and love. I hate Linda Tripp!”
That’s all fine and well, but I’m in New Jersey, and there aren’t many celebrities wandering around New Jersey that that aren’t, er… Snooki. Talk about bagging a 3-pointer… though, like I said, I wouldn’t actually need to do anything with her. I’m really not all that comfortable with texting her a picture of my, er, Anthony, though… nor of receiving back a texted picture of her, uh… Antoinette?
Maybe none of this is even worth it. Sure, it might add a few names to drop on my resumé, but why would I want to drop those names if all this’ll accomplish for me is to leave me hiding covertly in London, dodging stray buckshot from Sarah Palin’s death helicopter or rapping with K-Fed on his new album, “I’d Be a Has-Been Except I Never Quite Was Somebody In the First Place“. Maybe becoming famous on the basis of what you may or may not have stuck into another human being isn’t really the way to become famous at all.
I guess I’ll have to think of another way, then, to assemble my fortune. Maybe I should play the stock market or try to start a technology company or something. Whatever I do, though, it’s bound to be far safer and less stressful than cashing in on a scandal.
Meh, and I guess I should probably get around to returning Snooki’s calls, too.