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.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Disgraced media figure Mike Barnicle

Columnist and commentator Mike Barnicle has bounced back very nicely from having been forced to resign from the Boston Globe in 1998 over charges of fabrication and plagiarism.

Barnicle had been with the Globe since 1973 and had succeeded in becoming one of those relatively few columnists who BECAME their city, so to speak. He was and remains a sharp observer, a gifted writer, a quotable columnist with a good sense of humor. Consequently, his column was highly popular during his 25 years with that paper.

Even under a journalistic cloud of doubt, he was almost immediately snapped up by two other papers: the Boston Herald and the New York Daily News.

Later, he expanded his efforts into radio and television commentary. His early-morning radio show Barnicle's View and his work on Hardball and Morning Joe on morning TV have made him familiar to a still larger audience, and he is also popular (and well paid) on the speaker circuit.

Barnicle no longer does his Daily News column but has continued the one in the Boston Herald.

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