Get A Life: It's time to grow up
I am continually fascinated by how much time and effort the media puts into trivial nonsense. I watched the Oscars and witnessed the flub John Travolta made when he introduced one of the songs nominated for an Oscar. He made it through the title of the song, but his tongue somehow decided to do a back flip when he announced the singer’s name. He called her Adele Dazeem rather than Idina Menzel.
The words were barely out of his mouth when thousands of people began sending tweets about his mistake. It was as if we had been attacked by aliens. Personally I think we’ve lost our ability to discern the difference between “real” news and the information shared by five- and six-year-olds. Children of that age are fascinated by flatulence, burps, people falling down or anyone that makes a fool of themselves. It seems the media is drawing closer to their mindset.
The ultimate irony is that the title of the song is “Let it Go”! It seems no one can, since it was reported by a plethora of newscasters, went on YouTube and has become fodder for many comedians.
There were other individuals involved in the Oscars that became targets of ridicule as well, but none went on as long as what is now called being “Travolta-fied.” A slip of the tongue has created a word that I’m sure will soon be approved by the Oxford dictionary.
Meanwhile Travolta has apologized and said he spent the day beating himself up because of this unimaginable travesty against humanity. What if he had screwed up the entire announcement? He probably would have been driven out of town after being tarred and feathered.
I could possibly see Entertainment Tonight or one of the rags that are like peeping Toms getting into the Travolta mistake, because that’s what they’ve always done. But shouldn’t it end there? I yearn for the days when Walter Cronkite would tell the news in a straightforward, dignified manner. It was not convoluted with insipid remarks about celebrity mishaps.
Is it my imagination, or have we become more and more interested in watching or hearing about someone’s humiliating experience? It seems to be growing exponentially. We are becoming more and more the essence of schadenfreude, which means deriving pleasure from the misfortune of others.
I hope a shift occurs soon. Otherwise we will soon be watching toddlers gleefully wringing their hands as they burp in each others faces on the evening news.
Author, humorist, PBS star and Fortune 500 trainer Loretta LaRoche lives in Plymouth, Mass. To share your pet peeves, questions or comments, write to The Humor Potential, 50 Court St., Plymouth, MA 02360. Visit her website at www.stressed.com.