In a flurry of late-night emails, Fenton and I muse on the nature of fame and its impact on the recently deceased L’Wren Scott.
FENTON: (sending a link to L’Wren Scott’s Death Reveals Tragic Side of City’s Glitzy Scene in the New York Post) maybe too late [for the Longer Reads section] for today but wld love your thoughts on this in the wow report
JAMES: Yeah sorry. I was traveling all day, didn’t have time to include it. Weird that her death affected me the way it did. Never gave her much thought, but it seems very sad. The way she did it (with her scarf? from a doorknob?) then calling her assistant to come find the body… Too upsetting. she seemed so glamorous, like she had such a great life. You never really know anything about anyone, though, do you? It’s all just veils and masks on lies and illusion. Nobody ever “makes it” and lives happily ever after, do they? Sigh. Glamour is just a facade.
FENTON: Ru once said “glamour is where you’re not”. truer words were never spoke. and so you cant help wonder if as a society we have made a terrible mistake. it’s a given that celebrity makes everyone who’s not famous somewhat unhappy. but if it drives those with glamorous lives to suicide, well, whose benefittimg? we seem to have created a social model that makes everyone dissatisfied, isolated and unhappy. madness.
JAMES: Madness. Here’s the thing about glamour that nobody understands: It doesn’t exist within you. It’s not part of you, and it’s not something you can manifest (like style or charisma). It can only be projected on to you by someone else. Glamour is just a way of seeing something. So to everyone in the world you can BE a glamorous person and HAVE a glamorous life, but unfortunately YOU never get to experience it. And that leads to a growing disconnect between perception/reality. You feel like a fraud. L’Wren could have been on the cover of Vogue, but she knew the reality of her split ends, and the Planter’s wart on her foot and the fact that her rockstar boyfriend farts on her in his sleep (or whatever her secret shame was). She couldn’t accept that people thought she was glamorous because she didn’t feel it. And when that happens you can’t accept compliments and you don’t believe the positive reviews for your show, and all your success starts to put you in a shame spiral. I’m just spitballing here, of course, but it’s a working theory.
FENTON: Maybe kids would be less obsessed with being famous if they taught this stuff in high school.
JAMES: Right? Fame for Beginners. Remedial Red Carpet. Celebrity Civics. Applied Superstardom. Social Networking for the Newly Famous. Interview Speak as a Second Language. I could go on all night. I know: WE’LL OPEN THE WOW SCHOOL OF CELEBRITY AND MAKE A FORTUNE! And….. Goodnight!
FENTON: ‘night. :-)