This is a cautionary tale for all of you who have now dismissed Swine Flu as another ‘Panicdemic’, fuelled by the media and Tamiflu executives. It is true that the virus seems to be dwindling and that, with the exception of proportionately few unlucky victims, it is leaving in its wake nothing worse than used Kleenex and empty Lemsip boxes.
However, consider the phenomenon that is Katie Price. From relatively harmless beginnings, only affecting the eyesight of teenage boys, she went into the jungle and mutated. With the help of a Greek Australian carrier, she went worldwide and nowadays there are few pies that haven’t felt the virulent probing of her sticky fingers. Despite having only three apparent talents; horse riding (bizarrely), bitching and getting on my tits, she’s gone viral. From novels to perfume, clothing to autobiographies and style advice books, someone else does all the hard work and then she has slapped her name on it. She did sing on her CD, though. Unfortunately. Even that ‘body’ isn’t down to her – the plastic surgeons and dentists should get royalties.
But the most annoying aspect of this ‘glamour model’ cum businesswoman? She doesn’t just want to have her cake and eat it. She wants the entire bakery, with media rights to any by-products, and the ability to stop any visitors sticking their noses into the tubs of yeast. Sorry, I got carried away on that metaphor there, but it holds water. The Media is her life-support system and she uses it well. In fact, on the reality TV show, whenever she’s in front of a laptop, it isn’t to pen another fantastic novel, it’s to check what the press websites are saying about her. It’s as if her existence depends on column inches and photographs, which in a way I guess, it does. However, when life goes tits-up (or down, if she stops the surgery), she has the audacity to be offended by the press intrusion. This is someone who openly discussed sucking Peter Andre’s dick on national TV (well, ITV2) and drives around in a shocking-pink horse box the size of Essex.
Just like Derek Acorah, her activities are tolerated as ‘harmless’, but she is convincing a generation of weak-willed girls with self-esteem issues that getting boob jobs and strategic shagging is the easy way to fame and riches. She got lucky – that life choice is more likely to result in an appearance on Jeremy Kyle.
Still, there could be light at the end of the tunnel. ITV2 is trying its damnedest to squeeze the last drops of revenue out of her car crash life with the latest series. Unfortunately for poor Katie, the shit way she treated Andre and subsequent media-whore behaviour has turned most of the country against her, often with hilarious results. In her second jungle visit, the public voted six times running to make her eat testicles and cockroaches. Normal people would have been humiliated, but she honestly believed it was because they loved her and knew she would rise to the challenge.
There are jellyfish with more self-awareness.