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It’s been another big week for Britney Spears – not only was she involved in another paparazzi hit and run incident, but the Fed-Ex vs. Brit-Brit custody battle has become so confusing that I’m not even sure the judge knows where the kids are any more. But this is only the present. And, as always, the present is mere seconds – seconds! – from being the past.
I should be worried about the future. More specifically, I need to be worried about next Tuesday, October 30th, when Britney Spears’ new album, Blackout, hits the stands. It’s her first original music release since 2003 and I have no idea what to expect. On one hand, I should probably buy the album and listen to it on repeat until I have it committed to memory – both so that I may know my enemy better and because I need to learn from her for when I finally get around to recording my five world-wide hit pop albums.
On the other hand, should I buy the album at all? Should I support Brit’s downward spiral of a drug-dazed life by purchasing her CD? Wouldn’t that be sending the wrong message to Jive Records and the music industry at large?
Well, some of Brit’s closest acquaintances and former hangers-on say no. In fact, they’ve started a MySpace page, Be Proactive To Help, which urges anyone who truly cares about Brit to boycott her music and merchandise (and here I was, about to buy her new fragrance, In Control, so that I could see what Britney thinks being in control smells like). More than an utterly confusing mashing of an absolute train wreck of un-diagramable words, Be Proactive To Help really wants to see Britney get better and return to her former rock-hard-abs glory. The thought behind the boycott is that if Jive was financially affected by Brit’s mental state that they will force her to seek help and get healthy.
Upon first viewing the page, I was a bit moved. Here are people – fans – being proactive to help. Together. Would so many people be proactive to help me if I were in trouble? Would they even make a weird MySpace page for me? I decided then and there: as much as I wanted to hear it, I wouldn’t buy Blackout next week. I would save the pop star and save the world.
About an hour later, I was still on the site. The sun had set without my noticing, my blog was sitting cold and unupdated at updating time, my cat was hungry and confused. I couldn’t stop reading – the comments, the profiles of the commenters, the profiles of the significant others of the commenters. Oh, the body glitter and the sadness! Oh, the creepy middle-aged men who say they haven’t bought an album since …Baby One More Time! Oh, the pink backgrounds with slightly darker pink fonts! Oh, the John Mayer soundtracks!
And, around that time, when I was getting pink MySpace wallpaper eyestrain, that I realized that I had been tricked. Be Proactive to Help might be being proactive to help Britney, but they were being proactive to hinder me – my goals and my dreams. Instead of doing any of the many tasks I need to complete in order to surpass Britney’s success, I was sucked into wasting hours of my time. On purpose.
Yes, I will buy Blackout next week. And I will study it and I will learn. I will not be tricked by Brit’s posse again. I will stay focused and see nothing but my goal of being better at life than Britney Spears. In the end, hopefully, I will reek of being in control. To help.