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Opinion

Oscars add little substance to society

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February 26, 2009

Maybe this won’t be a surprise to anyone, but I didn’t watch the Oscars this year.

Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever watched the full presentation of those awards…or the Grammys, the Emmys, the Tonys or the Golden Globes either. But it seems you can’t get away from them. For at least a week before and after these events, every news Web site you visit is guaranteed to have a few headlines about them. The hot topics this time (they may already be cold by the time you read this) included weird female celebrity outfits, Heath Ledger’s posthumous award and George Clooney meeting President Obama.

Not only am I indifferent to Jessica Biel’s drooping corpse-colored gown or Whoopi Goldberg’s leopard-print muumuu, I don’t understand why anyone else cares either. They had to wear something, and at least they’re making some attempt at originality. I say that if they want to throw their money at goofy overpriced clothes in a spiraling economy, that’s all their business.

As far as Ledger goes…we all knew he was getting an Oscar. Even I knew, and I hardly paid attention. He was in the most popular (though maybe not the best) flick of 2008, and he’s dead. He was a shoo-in. Now let’s all let him rest in peace.

As for George Clooney meeting Obama, good for him. For his visits to Darfur and efforts as a United Nations representative, he should be commended. But for the life of me, I cannot stand to look at that man’s face. He looks like a wax dummy, with dead eyes forever frozen in a creepy squint and a perpetual maddening smirk…and millions of women go nuts for this guy. I don’t claim to understand things like that. I just ignore the terrible evening gossip shows, and when I see a picture of Clooney I look away as soon as possible. It’s working well for me.

Believe it or not, these aren’t just random complaints on my part. They add up to a matter of personal preference. If I could choose any occupation I wanted and succeed in it, “celebrity” would be one of my last choices. It would rob me of something I hold very dear: my privacy. Unless I wore a disguise, I couldn’t go anywhere without being surrounded by fans begging me to autograph their boxers. I couldn’t relax at home for long before the paparazzi came sniffing around-staring vacantly through the windows and clawing at the doors like a horde of zombies. Sure, it might be fun to rev up a chainsaw and run them all off the yard, but they’d come crawling back in five minutes anyway.

That’s another reason why I usually avoid entertainment news at all costs. Not just because I find it depressing, tacky and artificial, a distraction from what’s truly important and valuable in life. I also pass on the celebrity dirt to make sure that somewhere in the neon void that is pop culture, there’s at least one guy willing to leave those people alone. And that’s Nathan Sparks, the perpetual miscreant.