Fantasy suddenly collides with reality. The hysterical fans go through every emotion known to human kind in one single moment being face to face with their one great idol. Sometimes, they are not such big fans but still react to the celebrity in an unexpected manner when in their presence.
What happens? Where do all these emotions come from? Every bottled up variation of love and desire and unmet needs come to contact with That Person… How did this happen?
To a lot of people, superstars are not exactly real people. They know, logically that they are living and breathing human beings that live on planet Earth, but they are not real in the same sense as everyone else is. They know there’s styling, they know there is all image and fluff and fantasy surrounding them, and they fall in love with the fantasy. The fans are partly aware of the fantasy, partly shielding themselves from realizing that they are in love with a fantasy figure to an extent. Very few dare to guess how much of the person is real and how much of them is fiction. They remind themselves all the time that the photos are manipulated, the starlets are covered with makeup and that nothing, really, is real, but they adore the image nonetheless.
But in the real life, when that fantasy figure stands in front of a fan, just as incredible as they imagined, even more so… Their heart nearly stops. It wasn’t even supposed to be possible. This is not what they expected. The reality… Was More Incredible than the fantasy! It was only supposed to be clothing and accessories, but what they met was charisma. Heart. Someone loving and caring, humorous and fun. Someone who made the fan feel right at ease with their idol. That was not a part of the plan. The realization that you weren’t misled after all, that the fantasy was real, and that this person is every bit as amazing as they were said to be and… they were nice to you, it is all a little bit too much to bear. You cannot tell whether you are still under an illusion of some kind, or, are they, really, that amazing? Then, the fact that you cannot have someone like that in your life, never in a million years, creates a state of desperation; the realization that there is nobody in this world that will ever measure up to this person – who, incredibly, was a real, authentic person. The two worlds collide; your every day life with no fantasy in it, with the real world of the idol, their sparkling charisma and star quality, the stuff that people took for granted would not be there in real life. The shock of having to re-organize your idea of your reality on the spot can shake you up to the core; the person you dared to even criticize because you were afraid they wouldn’t last a close inspection, stood right there, with no difficulty showing you who they really are.
The fan was prepared for a disappointment. They were prepared to be laughed at by their own idol, pointed finger at and told to disappear because the star would now need to be left alone or whatever, but what they weren’t prepared for was an authentic, caring hug and “thanks for coming. It means a lot.” That stuff. That is unbearable. The sudden realization that there are nice people in the world; sometimes that one moment gives you more love than what you have known from your parents and your friends combined. The stark contrast can floor you. In a sense, being shown how little you’ve had in comparison to what people are capable of giving. Heart breaking, but so necessary. Someone needs to show people love. As fleeting as the moment is, the connection is real, the love is real… Even though it is universal, meant for everybody alike. When love rushes into emotion-deprived soul, like especially teens often are, the devastation is visible.
The desperation of knowing that the moment will pass soon, will spur up more emotion, the fleeting moment that you are allowed to stay in the company of a perfect human being – because even in their imperfections, to a fan, a star is perfection reincarnated and there is no shame in understanding that. The best possible use for a star is for the fan to evaluate exactly why they are in love with the star, what qualities are those that they value – because, unbelievably, those qualities are human qualities and non-famous people, that quite available to the fan, possess those same qualities…
From the star’s perspective, they possess much more qualities than most fans are aware of. That is what made them stars in the first place. What is interesting too, is that a lot of people, who see nothing in common to each other, consider themselves “just like” their mutual idol. This is because stars so often possess so many qualities that their fans can easily identify with a small portion of who that person is – and be forever arguing about what kind of a person the star really is. People can also always look at the star and reject all qualities that they don’t like and decide “that is the image” or “that part is the part that got ruined due to fame”. They can edit the star in their mind to fit their idea of who they want them to be, too. Further, even though the fan sees perfection, the star themselves maybe even more perfect than what the fan is capable seeing, or possess far more complicated qualities than what the fan wants to acknowledge.
To a lot of fans, kindness is the one quality that they adore over any other trait the star may possess, even talent included. After they meet a fan, they rave about “how nice they were” as if that was a skill worth more than all the talent they possess and some kind of a surprise to them. The talent, to many fans, is a bonus and to a lot of fans really doesn’t mean as much as their kindness. You can only appreciate talent as far as your own abilities allow, but everyone is capable of understanding kindness. And some people are in desperate need of it. Although to many stars, kindness, friendliness and politeness is somewhat of a non-issue. Evolved people are like that, they don’t know any other way to be than to be nice to people, it goes without saying.
Friendliness is not an act, it is just a sensible way to deal with people, because you will find it a lot easier to get along with people and get ahead in life if you are nice to other people rather than always picking a fight and acting aggressively or dismissively towards others. Such people would have to be incredibly talented, inhumanely talented even, to get anywhere near the top with a negative attitude like that. (Fictional example; Dr. House had a bedside manner of a brute, but because he was so good at what he did, people had to simply put up with him. Anyone with less skill would have been sacked at the first incident.) When a fan mistakes friendliness for friendship or for flirt and genuine interest, and should it somehow get out of hand through stalking behaviour, the fan would be surprised to be turned down – and quite eager to fill the tabloids with stories about how deceitful the star was towards them.
When the star loses that kindness as their career progresses and becomes angry, another set of emotions is released in the fan, who is likely to misinterpret the star’s frustration based on their own world view. The fan will feel a need to rescue the suffering star by showing them love even when the star fights and rejects expressions of adoration or acts hostile towards his fans like Jim Morrison did. To someone who values kindness and love above everything else, the instant conclusion is that their idol has been treated unkindly and been exploited. What is heart wrenching to know is that an angry star isn’t in need of love but true appreciation and understanding… Of his talent… His intelligence. The one thing that most fans cannot even conceive him lacking. He is lacking a peer, someone who challenges him, someone who is equally incredible as him, someone who doesn’t pretend to understand, someone who doesn’t simply praise his work out of habit or because they feel obligated to, but someone who truly understands what he is saying with his art, that is never just a way to make money, it is a way to self-express, but when that self-expression is taken as simple artistry, the message goes unheard and you wind up talking to walls.
Adored by millions… An artist self-destructs or commits suicide and people wreck their brain wondering why someone so loved and admired would feel so unhappy and not feel fulfilled… What else could he have possibly wanted… And the one thing they lack is a challenge. An opportunity to impress someone who is difficult to impress. They feel a LACK of appreciation of their peers. When everyone is simply praising everything you do – even the projects that were obviously lacking – you realize there is no point making an effort anymore. You can no longer make a mistake, and you realize all “criticism” you receive comes from viciousness and a need to make the critic feel better about themselves and to make the critic sound “knowledgeable” by insulting your over-blown ego that they see is a threat to their own ego.
Even the people the artist works with may lack understanding of what they are about, and when all praise comes based on their past achievements, what is there to live for or work for? You can produce mediocre work and be praised as if it was your masterpiece… Everyone being careful not to step on your ego thinking that if anyone points out the slightest of flaws in your work, you will flip for it. And some will. The ones who never had much talent to begin with, who simply want to bask in the attention regardless of what got them that attention. And it is these artists that the fans fear and expect to meet. The ones who throw dummy spits and boss people around demanding special treatment only to cover up the fact they know they are nothing and are getting everything regardless.
The stars who need their ego stroked are people who are protecting themselves from being found out as “fakes”. They are either afraid that they are NOT as talented as people give them credit for even though they are (Steven Tyler) or they know that they haven’t got the talent they insist people give them credit for regardless of the fact. (Check out Big Eyes, the movie.) The talented-but-afraid-of-not-being-that group are in not too bad of a situation if someone can convince them that they are worth every bit of praise they’re getting, but it will have to come from someone who they trust to be able to tell the difference… But most people will not attempt to convince an artist for their talent because people, even professional councilors, are always afraid of “inflating a star’s ego”.
But there is no helping a person who knows they are faking it, because their soul is in a growing phase; they have just figured out that people have different levels of talent. Before, they didn’t realize it, because their soul was too young and inexperienced to tell the difference between true talent and some talent, but now, all of the sudden, they are painfully aware of it. Lacking the talent, they want to deceive others who are still unable to tell the difference, possibly thinking they themselves are the only person alive who can tell a difference between a person with a talent and the other kind. They think everyone around them is too stupid to see they are not that talented, and they can make quite bold steps in order to further deceive people, who are, in reality simply politely not noticing the pretense and self-elevation although it was plain for them to see. The next step for someone with an inflated ego is to simply start learning; to start filling up the empty spots in the ego with actual skill and talent… In the next life they will be a little bit better… And in the following, another bit better and so forth, until they become what they wish to become.
Another interesting point in dealing with one’s own talent becomes when you realize that you are at the top of your own game. This is a difficult position to be in, because the people who are capable of accurately assessing exactly how good you are become fewer and fewer in between. So you start doubting yourself and your own sense of reality, you wonder whether or not you are giving yourself too much credit because others may not be equally impressed by you at all, or the people who are, don’t really show you that much appreciation. This comes from the fact that these people think you MUST know how great you are, and therefore they don’t want to bore you by telling you that again, or again, they don’t want to further inflate your ego.
The other part of it is that most people simply don’t know exactly how good you are, so even if they praise you, you simply discard their praise because you can tell they wouldn’t know the difference between a talented person and a genius even if they wanted to. You know that they are simply following a band wagon, they adore you because someone else told them you were the one to pay attention to. Your peers feel threatened by you so they say nothing, they simply lap up your praise for them, because, chances are that someone who is quite certain of their own talent doesn’t shy away from showing appreciation to those who deserve it, even if it meant that they themselves go without. So… You wish your talent will speak for itself, but it simply won’t happen because the people who could make that judgement call with enough credibility to move masses are about one… in… a few million… So you wind up being one of those underrated people who simply fly under the radar as you struggle to decide whether or not you’re actually good enough to make a fuss about yourself… Or simply imagining that you are.