1A An artist who seeks fame is like a dog chasing his own tail who, when he captures it, does not know what else to do but to continue chasing it. The cruelty of success is that it often leads those who seek such success to participate in their own destruction.
both social and sexual, to which the public objected, paid heavily for remaining true to himself. The mother of a young man Oscar was intimate with accused him at a banquet in front of his friends and fans of sexually influencing her son. Extremely angered by her remarks, he sued the young man's mother, asserting that she had
"Don't quit your day job!" is advice frequently given by understandably pessimistic family members and friends to a budding artist who is trying hard to succeed. The conquest of fame is difficult at best, and many end up emotionally if not financially bankrupt. Still, impure motives such as the desire for worshipping fans and praise from peers may spur the artist on. The lure of drowning in fame's imperial glory is not easily resisted.
damaged his "good" name. He should have hired a better attorney, though. The judge did not second Wilde's call to have the woman pay for damaging his name, and instead fined Wilde. He ended up in jail after refusing to pay, and even worse, was permanently expelled from the wider circle of public favor. When things were at their worst, he found that no one was willing to risk his or her name in his defense.
Those who gain fame most often gain it as a result of exploiting their talent for singing, dancing, painting, or writing, etc. They develop a style that agents market aggressively to hasten popularity, and their ride on the express elevator to the top is a blur. Most would be hard-pressed to tell you how they even got there. Artists cannot remain idle, though. When the performer, painter or writer becomes bored, their work begins to show a lack of continuity in its appeal and it becomes difficult to sustain the attention of the public. After their enthusiasm has dissolved, the public simply moves on to the next flavor of the month. Artists who do attempt to remain current by making even minute changes to their style of writing, dancing or singing, run a significant risk of losing the audience's favor. The public simply discounts styles other than those for which the artist has become famous.
His price for remaining true to himself was to be left alone when he needed his fans the most.
Curiously enough, it is those who fail that reap the greatest reward: freedom! They enjoy the freedom to express themselves in unique and original ways without fear of losing the support of fans. Failed artists may find comfort in knowing that many great artists never found fame until well after they had passed away or in knowing that they did not sell out. They may justify their failure by convincing themselves their genius is too sophisticated for contemporary audiences.
Single-minded artists who continue their quest for fame even after failure might also like to know that failure has motivated some famous people to work even harder to succeed. Thomas Wolfe, the American novelist, had his first novel Look Homeward, Angel rejected 39 times before it was finally published.
Famous authors' styles?a Tennessee Williams play or a plot by Ernest Hemingway or a poem by Robert Frost or T.S. Eliot?are easily recognizable. The same is true of painters like Monet, Renoir, or Dali and moviemakers like Hitchcock, Fellini, Spielberg, Chen Kaige or Zhang Yimou. Their distinct styles marked a significant change in form from others and gained them fame and fortune. However, they paid for it by giving up the freedom to express themselves with other styles or forms.
Beethoven overcame his father, who did not believe that he had any potential as a musician, to become the greatest musician in the world. And Pestalozzi, the famous Swiss educator in the 19th century, failed at every job he ever had until he came upon the idea of teaching children and developing the fundamental theories to produce a new form of education. Thomas Edison was thrown out of school in the fourth grade, because he seemed to his teacher to be quite dull. Unfortunately for most people, however, failure is the end of their struggle, not the beginning.
Fame's spotlight can be hotter than a tropical jungle?a fraud is quickly exposed, and the pressure of so much attention is too much for most to endure. It takes you out of yourself: You must be what the public thinks you are, not what you really are or could be. The performer, like the politician, must often please his or her audiences by saying things he or she does not mean or fully believe. I say to those who desperately seek fame and fortune: good luck. But alas, you may find that it was not what you wanted. The dog who catches his tail discovers that it is only a tail. The person who achieves success often discovers that it does more harm than good. So instead of trying so hard to achieve success, try to be happy with who you are and what you do. One drop of fame will likely contaminate the entire well of a man's soul, and so an artist who remains true to himself or herself is particularly amazing. You would be hard-pressed to underline many names of those who have not compromised and still succeeded in the fame game. An example, the famous Irish writer Oscar Wilde, known for his uncompromising behavior, Try to do work that you can be proud of. Maybe you won't be famous in your own lifetime, but you may create better art. 1B One summer day my father sent me to buy some wire and fencing to put around our barn to pen up the bull. At 16, I liked nothing better than getting behind the wheel of our truck and driving into town
on the old mill road. Water from the mill's wheel sprayed in the sunshine making a rainbow over the canal and I often stopped there on my way to bathe and cool off for a spell?natural air conditioning. The sun was so hot, I did not need a towel as I was dry by the time I climbed the clay banks and crossed the road ditch to the truck. Just before town, the road shot along the sea where I would collect seashells or gather seaweed beneath the giant crane unloading the ships. This trip was different, though. My father had told me I'd have to ask for credit at the store.
My great grandfather may have been sold as a slave at auction, but this was not an excuse to do wrong to others. Instead my father believed the only way to honor him was through hard work and respect for all men.
We children?eight brothers and two sisters?could enjoy our good name, unearned, unless and until we did something to lose it. We had an interest in how one another behaved and our own actions as well, lest we destroy the name my father had created. Our good name was and still is the glue that holds our family tight together.
It was 1976, and the ugly shadow of racism was still a fact of life. I'd seen my friends ask for credit and then stand, head down, while a storeowner enquired into whether they were "good for it". Many store clerks watched black youths with the assumption that they were thieves every time they even went into a grocery. The desire to honor my father's good name spurred me to become the first in our family to go to university. I worked my way through college as a porter at a four-star hotel. Eventually, that good name provided the initiative to start my own successful public relations firm in Washington, D.C.
My family was honest. We paid our debts. But just before harvest, all the money flowed out. There were no new deposits at the bank. Cash was short.
America needs to restore a sense of shame in its neighborhoods. Doing drugs, spending all your money at the liquor store, stealing, or getting a young woman pregnant with no intent to marry her should induce a deep sense of embarrassment. But it doesn't. Nearly one out of three births in America is to a single mother. Many of these children will grow up without the security and guidance they need to become honorable members of
At Davis Brothers' General Store, Buck Davis stood behind the register, talking to a middle-aged farmer. Buck was a tall, weathered man in a red hunting shirt and I nodded as I passed him on my way to the hardware section to get a container of nails, a coil of binding wire and fencing. I pulled my purchases up to the counter and placed the nails in the tray of the scale, saying carefully, "I need to put this on credit." My brow was moist with nervous sweat and I wiped it away with the back of my arm.
society.
Once the social ties and mutual obligations of the family melt away, communities fall apart. While the population has increased only 40 percent since 1960, violent crime in America has increased a staggering 550 percent?and we've become exceedingly used to it. Teen drug use has also risen. In one North Carolina County, police arrested 73 students from 12 secondary schools for dealing drugs, some of them right in the classroom.
The farmer gave me an amused, cynical look, but Buck's face didn't change. "Sure," he said easily, reaching for his booklet where he kept records for credit. I gave a sigh of relief. "Your daddy is always good for it." He turned to the farmer. "This here is one of James Williams' sons. They broke the mold when they made that man." The good name passed on by my father and maintained to this day by my brothers and sisters The farmer nodded in a neighborly way. I was filled with pride. "James Williams' son." Those three words had opened a door to an adult's respect and trust. and me is worth as much now as ever. Even today, when I stop into Buck Davis' shop or my hometown <49>barbershop</49> for a haircut, I am still greeted as James Williams' son. My family's good name did <50>pave</50> the way for me. 2A He was born in a poor area of South London. As I heaved the heavy freight into the bed of the truck, I did so with ease, feeling like a stronger man than the one that left the farm that morning. I had discovered that a good name could furnish a capital of good will of great value. Everyone knew what to expect from a Williams: a decent person who kept his word and respected himself too much to do wrong. He wore his mother's old red stockings cut down for ankle socks. His mother was temporarily declared mad. Dickens might have created Charlie Chaplin's childhood. But only Charlie Chaplin could have created the great comic character of "the Tramp", the little man in rags who gave his creator permanent fame. Meanwhile, the small signs of civility and respect that hold up civilization are vanishing from schools, stores and streets. Phrases like "yes, ma'am", "no, sir", "thank you" and "please" get a yawn from kids today who are encouraged instead by cursing on television and in music. They simply shrug off the rewards of a good name.
surgery; boots were boiled in his film The Gold Rush and their soles eaten with salt and Other countries?France, Italy, Spain, even Japan?have provided more applause (and profit) where Chaplin is concerned than the land of his birth. Chaplin quit Britain for good in 1913 when he journeyed to America with a group of performers to do his comedy act on the stage, where talent scouts recruited him to work for Mack Sennett, the king of Hollywood comedy films. He also had a deep need to be loved?and a corresponding fear of being betrayed. The two were hard to combine and sometimes?as in his early marriages?the collision Sad to say, many English people in the 1920s and 1930s thought Chaplin's Tramp a bit, well, "crude". Certainly middle-class audiences did; the working-class audiences were more likely to clap for a character who revolted against authority, using his wicked little cane to trip it up, or aiming the heel of his boot for a well-placed kick at its broad rear. All the same, Chaplin's comic beggar didn't seem all that English or even working-class. English tramps didn't sport tiny moustaches, huge pants or tail coats: European leaders and Italian waiters wore things like that. Then again, the Tramp's quick eye for a pretty girl had a coarse way about it that was considered, well, not quite nice by English audiences?that's how foreigners behaved, wasn't it? But for over half of his screen career, Chaplin had no screen voice to confirm his British nationality. It's a relief to know that life eventually gave Charlie Chaplin the stability and happiness it had earlier denied him. In Oona O'Neill Chaplin, he found a partner whose stability and affection spanned the 37 years age difference between them, which had seemed so threatening, that when the official who was marrying them in 1942 turned to the beautiful girl of 17 who'd given notice of their wedding date, he said, "And where is the young man? "?Chaplin, then 54, had cautiously waited outside. As Oona herself was the child of a large family with its own problems, she was well prepared Indeed, it was a headache for Chaplin when he could no longer resist the talking movies and had to find "the right voice" for his Tramp. He postponed that day as long as possible: In Modern Times in 1936, the first film in which he was heard as a singing waiter, he made up a nonsense language which sounded like no known nationality. He later said he imagined the Tramp to be a college-educated gentleman who'd come down in the world. But if he'd been able to speak with an educated accent in those early short comedies, it's doubtful i
 

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