About this Blog

"In the future everybody will be world-famous for 15 minutes." So said the bleached-out, late lamented artist Andy Warhol. Having lived and worked in New York City, Warhol came to fully grasp the hold celebrity has on us. In this very famous sentence, he meant to point out that in a culture fixated on fame, many people will suddenly flash brightly onto the public screen, then--poof--will just as quickly disappear from public view--like shooting stars. Other individuals derive their celebrity from one stellar accomplishment (one hit song, one iconic role, etc.) that they never again match.

This blog is devoted to the one part of our celebrity culture that no one has written much about: temporary/one-shot celebrities.

The pace of modern life has quickened, and now we hear people speaking of someone's 15 seconds of fame. These "celebrities with a lower-case c" who will appear in this blog sometimes come to us from the world of entertainment, sometimes from the world of news. All are fascinating.

The need of our communications media for a continual stream of new material assures that we will have no end of colorful people who go quickly, where celebrity is concerned, from zero to hero (or villain) and back to zero. Now you see 'em, now you don't. What a crazy world, eh?

Temporary celebrities coming from the world of entertainment include one-hit recording artists; TV and movie icons who, although they might have had a great many accomplishments in their career, are remembered for one big role; standouts of reality TV; sports figures remembered for one remarkable accomplishment; and people whose celebrity came from one big role in a commercial or print ad.

News-based temporary celebrities come in many forms: mass/serial killers, other murderers of special note, sex-crime offenders, disgraced figures of government/military/business/media/religion, spies/traitors, hoaxers, femmes/hommes fatale, heroes, whistle blowers, inventors/innovators, and victims.

Celebrity Blogsburg will consider each category in turn.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Hero Marian Morris

In Arkadelphia, AR, in 2006, retired nurse Marian Morris became a minor hero and temporary celebrity, at least to animal fanciers. Her unlikely good deed was saving the life of an apparently drowned chicken, Boo Boo by name, by mouth-to-beak resuscitation.

She reported blowing into the unfortunate critter's beak and seeing its eyes pop open, then shut again. She repeated the unsavory procedure, and Boo Boo was placed in a box in the sunshine. Thereupon, Morris' sister-in-law began reading from the Bible--about Lazarus returning from the dead. So did Boo Boo, who ended up not on the dinner table, but on the Leno Show.

A year earlier, roughly the same thing had happened in Collbran, CO, where Eugene Safken combined mouth-to-beak with swinging the victim around by its feet until the chicken revived and lived to cackle again.

Mouth-to-snout stories also have surfaced. In 2005, Salem, MA, firefighter Richard LeBlanc saved Pixie the terrier in this manner after pulling her from her burning home. Also, in 2009, Prince the poodle was revived after having been hit by a car. Enjoying temporary celebrity this time was neighbor Timothy Dehning.

Such heroics come with a very high yuck factor, of course, but they are heroic just the same.

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