Last night I hunkered down and watched Hollywood’s most glamorous night. The Oscars-the pinnacle of a year’s worth of acting and filmmaking. All of the gowns (really? she wore THAT?)! The jewels! The pretty and very-tweaked-and-tucked people! And I did it in the most un-glamorous way possible. Who are YOU wearing? they asked….I am wearing my red, fluffy bathrobe (designer unknown)…my big, fluffy, gray slippers, also by an undisclosed designer and my hair is in a faaaabulous up-do. I mean ponytail. Makeup went by the wayside about an hour ago. Going au naturale to show off my God-given beauty. I hope you can control yourself. Accompanying this ravishing ensemble was a giant bowl of popcorn and a steaming hot cup of green tea. Eat your heart out, Wolfgang Puck. Bring on the Oscars!
As I watched and watched and texted with one of my besties (besties? what am I, 12?), who is also a self-professed award-show hound, I couldn’t help but think one thing. This is all make-believe.
We are celebrating people, who, for a living, live in the land of make-believe. They are acting. Yes, they may indeed be acting out something real that happened, but at the end of the day, they are acting. This really is quite a phenomenon, if you ask me. But, that said, I still enjoy their craft (as they always refer to it, much like cheese-making or wine-making) and will probably continue to watch Hollywood’s biggest night.
BUT…let’s for a minute think of how society would be if we gave huge, fabulously-publicized awards to people who REALLY did great things for our world. I’m not trying to belittle the profession of acting (even though it certainly may seem like it) but honestly, I think we can all agree that our world at the moment has a fierce case of celebrity-idolitry and pseudo-celebrity fascination. Case in point: The Kardashians (can I adapt Louis CK’s line now?…”non-contributing zero”-Hey, if the shoe fits). The world is definitely a bit out of balance.
I have a friend who is a firefighter. He was just telling me this week how he had to do CPR on several people the other night, one of whom died. He has pulled people from crashed cars. He has felt heartbeats diminish beneath his hands. He runs into burning buildings to save people he doesn’t know. Give him an Award for that.
I have a few girlfriends who are teachers. They are greeted by about 20 students every morning. Chatting. Requesting things of them. Listening. Not listening. Making excuses about their homework. Throwing up. Dealing with lice break-outs. Crazed parents. And yet, these teachers’ greatest hope is to pass some knowledge along and further their students’ growing minds. Give them Awards.
How about scientists who are constantly and tirelessly working to cure diseases so that we may live longer and healthier lives? How about people who give of themselves to build homes for Habitat for Humanity or help rebuild devastated areas after catastrophes like Hurricane Katrina? How about volunteers who help adults learn to read? How about mentors who help guide children who are without positive role models in their lives?
We need some balance in the world these days. Yes, the glitz and glam is all fun and good, but where are the awards for these amazing people, too?
(yes…I know this first post of the week is rather soap-boxy. Thank you for listening. Tomorrow we will shift gears to something lighter and have some recipes-promise!)