Tuesday, March 20, 2007


I don't get it. I mean, I understand the urge people have to become famous; the recognition, the appreciation, the phenomenally easy access to sex (so I've heard), but it's odd. It's the fact that as a celebrity, people know who you are, yet the overwhelming majority of the planet are complete strangers by return.
I don't think I could face leaving my flat under those circumstances.

On Saturday, I was in Woolworths, frantically scrambling for Mothers' Day presents and a belated birthday gift for my niece (which would ultimately be a tiny pathetic pink sock for her iPod - I am a shit Uncle), when Mark Lamarr was stood shopping with his peroxide blonde girlfriend and shouting mundanities, a sort of casual celebrity Don't You Know Who I Am? without the confrontation, and I immediately went bright red. Actually, I immediately sent a text to Monkey Dave to tell him his doppelganger was in front of me and braying loudly.

Mark Lamarr

I don't know why I went red, and it annoyed me. (And I promised not to get annoyed again - sorry.) I know they're only people too, of fucking course, but I've got a particularly good head for faces and I know damn well if so-and-so's stood next to me and thumbing through the confectionary aisle. (And I'm equally clued up when faced with a gurning shortarse pretending to be Pete Tong.)

Monkey Dave

In fact, this was one of the reasons why I couldn't hack working at the BBC. If I wasn't feeling inadequate and unworthy among furiously hardworking pretty young things, I was positively apoplectic when walking down a corridor and running into Terry Wogan, or Esther Rantzen, or Toyah fucking Wilcox.

So I tried my best to ignore them. I wanted to ignore them as they're at work too and likely to appreciate not being gawped at. Although I did find myself hypnotically entranced one evening by Rolf Harris, good old Rolf, minding his own business, as he left a room. I stared at him like an enraptured deer caught in the headlights of demi-fame, staring at the man who, when I was a child, would draw pictures of Daffy Duck or Tom and Jerry before turning to the camera to introduce a cartoon of the very thing he'd been drawing.
God, the excitement of Rolf's Cartoon Time, my childhood admiration of his skill as an artist, the building tension as he'd draw - yes, it's Foghorn Leghorn, I love that dog-hating Southern rooster!

And so I stared at Rolf, unaware that I was staring. Until, after two minutes of subconscious goggling like an open-mouthed Tom Cruise in a gay sauna, Rolf winked at me.
A wink.
At me.
Because I'd been staring so hard I'd forced him into a 'Yep, I'm Rolf Harris' wink and I went crimson.

Unfortunately, going red's another black mark against being pale. I've made women across the Attractive Spectrum think I fancy them because I'VE GONE RED FOR NO REASON. I've also made men think I'm gay, made newsagents shift uneasily, and petrified my hairdresser.

But again, I'm digressing. Last weekend was kind of odd. The third member of BBC's Top Gear who isn't Clarkson or Crash Boy was buying fags in Tescos, making me shuffle awkwardly in the queue. The following day, after trying to avoid a shouty Mark Lamarr bellow 'Let's see if there's anything in Fopps', I found myself in a specialist music store standing next to the self-same Top Gear presenter from the night before as he treated himself to a mid-life crisis top of the range MP3 player. When I got back to my TV, there he was in a light-hearted Top Gear skit for Comic Relief.

Live TV, my arse.

On Sunday, as I presented my Mum with the pre-requisite 'Thanks for nine-and-a-half months gestating me' chocolates, and a mug with 'Mum' stamped on it (in case she forgot), my Mother told me about her best friend, or rather, her best friend's granddaughter.

The last time I saw her, she was a cute toddler (My Mum's best friend's granddaughter, not my Mum's best friend. That would be odd.) Now, she is an infinitely cuter 17-year-old, and in the dubious clutches of a gimp-faced ex-shit soap star. There, on that Sunday's really low market newspaper, was the evidence. 'HIDEOUS MACRO-FAMOUS CHARM-VOID CHEATS ON BELITTLED WIFE WITH DOE-EYED TEEN' or somesuch headline.

And there, in its mucky pages, was said Doe-Eyed Teen, the granddaughter of my Maternal √úberchum, unaware that she'd been 'Papped'.

So that's the attraction of fame: Sex On Tap, despite looking like an unshaven dwarf that's been dragged along miles of badly paved roads by a dangerously drunk Michael Schumacher in a Ferrari Enzo V12 who's also on crack.

That, and the beautiful irony of being flung disgracefully expensive designer goods gratis, despite being fabulously rich enough to buy these companies and fifteen others outright only to let them sink into bankruptcy, for giggles.

Little wonder most teenagers' burning ambition is simply 'To Be Famous'.

And like Paris Hilton and all the fucking rest, nowadays it requires absolutely no talent either.


luna said...

Did it occur to you that if you find yourself rubbing shoulders with insignificant celebrities lately it's because you've recently become one of them,and like attracts like,and birds of a feather?

BTW your mate Monkey Dave (who's reading your blog I hope) is way more handsome than ghastly Lamarr.
Why do you call him a monkey?Is he the one on your back by any chance.

Anonymous said...

I just wondered where you shop, was it the Woolies in Camden Town

Fussy Bitch said...

If you insist on buying your milk and bog rolls in Fortnum and Masons then what else can you expect? ;-)

furtive said...

That's so funny Fweng. DO you have an autograph book? :)

Shoshana said...

You've had Mother's Day already? Ours isn't until May, when it's nice out and flowers are appropriate.

Anonymous said...

I actually experience something similar. I am completely unimpressed by the cult of celebrity, and can't understand why doing one specific thing well (or not, in the case of many current celebrities) makes one more admired than others in such an over the top way.

Then... I encounter someone with some degree of celebrity, and I get all goofy and tongue-tied, then name drop like mad about having met them (or even better, having them email me about my blog -- wink, wink).

Mark Lamarr said...

Sorry, didn't mean to intimidate you.

stephen with a ph said...

Is Mark Lamarr still a "celebrity"?

Joie de Vivre said...

I used to fancy Mark Lamarr, and then came never mind the bollocks.

I now fancy Monkey Dave

fwengebola said...

Lune ~ I'm hardly a celebrity, dear. Except in my head.
And Monkey Dave is called Monkey Dave because he likes and looks like a monkey.
WC ~ No, the gold-plated non-existant Woolies in Knightsbridge.
FB ~ Have you been stalking me?
Furtive ~ Nope. Although when I was about 10, my Dad got me Jeffrey Archers, ironically. The irony being he's the world's biggest cunt.
Shosh ~ We have our Mothers' Day early on in the year when it's cold and the trains are screwed and it's more endearing to battle off to their houses under those circumstances.
LFM ~ Mark Lamarr's been sending you dirty emails? Are you sure it's him?
Mark Lamarr ~ Did you Google yourself here? I didn't think your head could get any bigger.
Stephen ~ Welcome. And I question the use of your word 'Still'.
JDV ~ You don't get that programme in NZ, do you? Oh my. And don't fancy Monkey Dave. It will inflate his little simian ego.

Anonymous said...

mark lamar needs to be looked in a dark room and beaten with a baseball bat, he is a prize one mug,
I would not do that oh course, I would have to get the heavy mob in x

Joie de Vivre said...

No, I saw it in the UK. Haven't seen anything of M Lamar until you're blog. uhoh, maybe you are perpetuating his 'celebrity'

luna said...

That's fine as long as he doesn't love like a monkey.
You're jealous.

luna said...

BTW has he authorized your publishing his pics on the net together with some derogatory captions?

Quick said...

Mark Lamarr's got a rough noggin. Who is he?

Ordinary Girl said...

I think I may have had sex with Monkey Dave.

Only joking!!! Jeez, some people will believe anything :-)

Will said...

Hey, I met Rolf Harris when I was about 10. I showed him one of my drawings. He complimented me on it. ROLF HARRIS LIKED MY DRAWING. There is, to my knowledge, no higher praise.

fwengebola said...

WC ~ Oh Be Nice. He won't need a baseball bat, or a heavy mob. A small man with his fists will suffice.
JDV ~ I will never mention him again.
Lune ~ Actually, no. He is blissfully aware that his picture and vague clues as to his identity are here. I should probably taken them down.
Quick ~ Monkey Dave.
OG ~ I didn't believe you. But I'm not going to insult Monkey Dave by casting dispersions on his Monkey prowess.
Will ~ How about Carmen Electra liking your drawing? I don't fancy her, but surely she beats bearded men (not literally).

fwengebola said...

Sorry, I meant that Monkey Dave is blissfully unaware that his picture and clues as to his real identity are in the internet ether.
He will probably want to kill me.

Anonymous said...

Mark Lamarr is brilliant.

fwengebola said...

Oh he's ok. But he could do with being less shouty and happy, and more pathetic and self-depricating. That's how people like their comedians.

Anonymous said...

Deprecating. You're welcome.