Monday, June 1, 2009


Now here's an interesting turn of events? Once upon a time, being cruel to the press (or hotel employees) and acting like a sore loser would put a celebrity in the doghouse faster than you can say "Russell Crowe." Sean Penn and Johnny Depp, for instance, only became beloved and Oscar bait once they cooled their heels and their tempers and began to put on a happy face in public. And Kanye West had to learn to take those Grammy losses in stride or risk killing his career momentum.

But not Susan Boyle. She reportedly lost it with reporters and swore at them days before last weekend's Britain's Got Talent finale, and when she ultimately came in second place, she is said to have run down a backstage corridor shouting, "I hate this show!" Afterwards, she was escorted to a private clinic to be evaluated for what People magazine called an "emotional breakdown." Not exactly the soft-spoken spinster we had come to love -- apparently, unconditionally. Our collective response: Ah, poor baby! Yet, we snicker when beautiful people are treated for "exhaustion": During her own trip to the loony bin way back in the early '00s, Mariah Carey probably would have killed for half the sympathy we're pouring on Susan.

Yeah, poor Susan Boyle -- all the way to the bank. If I see one more Facebook post extolling Susan and her supernatural ability to move mountains with her voice and mourning her BGT defeat, I think I'm going to scream. Aaaaahhhhh!!!!! Some loser: Susan stands to earn millions when all is said and done. Not bad for someone who supposedly never cared about fame; all she wanted was to be a "professional singer," she modestly pointed out at the beginning of her first BGT appearance. But she didn't seem to have much trouble dealing with the fame part when she was photographed in all those "makeover" outfits, striking the cheesiest possible thumbs-up poses and even getting to hold court with Oprah.

I understand that becoming suddenly famous takes its toll, but surely Susan is old enough to realize what she was getting into when she signed up to sing on a national TV show. If Adam Lambert can take his second-place finish in stride (all while being scrutinized by the media for something as private as his sexuality), so can Susan. She now she stands to clean up financially, all for being homely (admit it: that's a huge part of her appeal -- loving her makes us feel less shallow than we really are) and having a decent voice that wouldn't be nearly so remarkable to her fans if she were twentysomething with the face and body of Leona Lewis, who, let's face it, would mop the floor with Susan in a vocal showdown.

Makes me wonder where Lindsay Lohan's career would be today if she were twice the size and half as attractive. Beautiful people behaving badly are nuts. Homely people behaving badly are just, well, sad and misunderstood, so we root for those underdogs because it makes us feel like better people.

Poor Susan Boyle?

Pardon me while I play the grand piano.
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