Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Fame, I'm Going to Live Forever

So I was answering a questionnaire on eHarmony (long story, and I’ve done far too many posts about dating lately, so we’ll just have to see if it comes up later) which asked what I wanted most: money, fame, power or respect.

It was a funny question, because I felt like I had to answer respect or be a douche. Clearly, it’s the only respectable answer. And it’s what I chose, but just narrowly. I like having power, except when I want to be lazy. I like having money, but honestly my expenses are pretty limited. But fame, well there would be major benefits.

The downside of course would be talking to people. Sometimes I’m grocery shopping and they don’t have a self checkout aisle. And I get pretty annoyed that I’m actually going to have to talk to the grocer. It’s true, I probably have some kind of a personality disorder. Now imagine if you had people talking to you all the time as you walk down the street. Death.

But, here’s another thing to consider: fame is like respect, for stupid people. When you’re famous people would treat you like they SHOULD treat venerable people. But instead we displace our respect onto celebrities. So in terms of fringe benefits, you’d get a ton more with fame than respect.

I was reading about Amanda Palmer the other day. In case you don’t know who she is (ie everyone who’s reading this) she was the lead singer for The Dresden Dolls. Yes, I imagine that doesn’t help you out any. They’re a band; I’ve only ever met one fan, though I rarely ask people if they’re fans of the Dresden Dolls in the course of normal conversation.

ANYWAY, Ms Palmer came to my attention because I was listening to her song, Oasis. It’s uber-catchy, and a bit controversial because of the content of the chipper song. This lead me to the fact that she had just released an album of Radiohead covers played on a ukulele. Because that’s what you get to do when you’re famous, make albums for fun. She’s charging 84 cents to download it. 54 cents go to Radiohead, 30 to Palmer. Again, she gets to do whatever she wants because she’s (a little bit) famous.

In the course of reading that, I came across the fact that she’s engaged to Neil Gaiman. NEIL GAIMAN! Equal parts random and awesome.

I don’t want to marry Neil Gaiman. Stop the presses, I know. And sorry to bring up marriage yet again btw. But my point is when you’re famous, you get to marry famous people. You get to work with famous people. You get to play Uno with famous people.

Imagine playing Uno with Kristen Bell, Neil Patrick Harris and Bill Murray. Can you imagine it? No, probably not, because it would be too awesome. And what if each of them brought a friend from work? Suddenly you’re playing Uno with Jason Segel (who knows both Kristen and Neil), Nathan Fillion and Scarlett Johansson. Aside from the fact that 7 is getting to be too crowded of an Uno game, it would be about the coolest thing ever.

The original thing I was going to write about was Radiohead covers. I’m sorry if you would have rather read that post. But here’s the gist: Radiohead is awesome, always will be, and despite it being hipster cliché to love them, you should. Here are some great covers, because cool people cover Radiohead:

1. Regina Spektor – No Surprises. (Also, Amanda Rogers and Northern State do pretty good ones.)

2. Vampire Weekend – Exit Music (for a film).

3. Jamie Cullum – High and Dry

4. Gnarls Barkley – Reckoner

5. Mark Ronson/Phantom Planet – Just (Awesome, I nearly like it better than the original.)

6. Damien Rice – Creep (Everyone and their mother has covered Creep. Damien is better than their mother.)

7. Eliza Lumley – Black Star

8. The Twilight Sad – Climbing Up the Walls

9. Tori Amos – Karma Police (James Vanderslice does an interesting one as well.)

10. Amanda Palmer – Fake Plastic Trees (the whole album is pretty nice.)

Also worth noting:

A. Hanson – Optimistic (Yep, that Hanson. Actually pretty good cover.)
B. Hard ‘n Phirm – Rodeohead (a country medley of songs.)
C. Overdub – What a Wonderful Surprise (What a Wonderful World / No Surprises mashup)
D. Christopher O’Riley – True Love Awaits: O’Riley Plays Radiohead (a great album of piano covers of Radiohead)
E. dj gyngyvytus – crunk tribute to radiohead (fun crunk versions.)


Paul said...

First,I literally laughed out loud before finishing the first paragraph. You're absolutely right about the perks of fame, though I would be playing nerts and the only overlap between your game and mine would be Bill Murray. Also, you're absolutely right that everyone should like Radiohead.

anna. said...

maybe i'm a bad person but i hate talking to people at the grocery store. hit me with a u-scan any day of the week.

Ranteumptom said...

Anna, glad we can be antisocial together. Or, be antisocial away from each other. Which is really the only way antisocials would have it.

Paul, that was a fairly random group of people. I think if I made an all time top 3 it would have to have David Bowie in it. But probably still have Bill Murray.