When Britney (Spears Federline) and Kevin (Federline) went on television with their “tell all” special, “Can You Handle Our Truth?” (which was hastily switched to “Britney and Kevin,” or some other useless title), many of us snickered. There is a lot we CA’T handle. Global warming, the war in Iraq, child prostitution, AIDS in Africa, Enron…but one thing we CAN handle? Trashing our once-favored celebrities. So, Britney, to answer your “question,” yes, we can handle your truth. It feels a little sticky to the touch and, frankly, I’d rather be handling something else, but if you want to give us your truth all that we require is that you face it yourself. And sugar, it isn’t going to be easy.
Weirder than Britney herself pontificating on her “life” is the hoopla surrounding her Dateline appearance, opposite newly crowned hack Matt Lauer. Has it really come to this, Matt? Has it always been this, Matt?
Why would he do an interview with a poor, shipwrecked celebrity like Britney, who is barely holding on to her one baby, has another one on the way and no doubt has to listen to her ne’er do well husband-cum-rap star whine about how all he ever does is sit around listening to the crying baby. He also has two other forgotten babies he fathered with Shar Jackson. Suddenly this whole Polygamy scenario they got going on in Utah (or HBO, as the case may be) seems a far more preferable situation. One dad, a whole gaggle of kids.
But back to Matt Lauer and his big time get. Can you imagine that the biggest news story last week was Britney Spears crying on live TV about the paparazzi who won’t leave her alone? Sadly, this is what it’s come to, America. We throw stones at them, laugh at them, all but eject them from our loving gaze and then we have to face ourselves when we see the monsters we create.
Britney was a fresh piece of meat for an adoring, starving public once upon a time. It was a piece of cake for the child star to smile pretty for the cameras, wait until her chest developed and then do what all female stars do since Madonna hiked up her skirt and wore her underwear as outerwear. Britney was happily on top of the world. Britney was the most desired woman on the planet once upon a time. But Britney, Britney had a great fall.
And isn’t bizarre how Matt Lauer and crew were sitting there waiting for their chance to grab ratings if they could get Brit Brit to cry on television? The poor girl, cry she did. But that wasn’t all. She presented herself almost as a parody of what the gossip blogs and tabloids have painted her as: garish white trash one step away from Tonya Harding and Roseanne Barr. What a rude awakening it is for a girl who used to never have to worry about anyone rejecting her. Oh boy, what a few extra pounds and a few bad outfits can do for a girl’s career.
But it wasn’t just what she said, which was bad enough. Here is a girl who has been adored since she was a child almost, though not quite, to a Michael Jackson degree. Here is a girl who is a self-proclaimed hick; “We’re country!” she said, in defense of driving around with her baby on her lap. Britney either doesn’t have a clue as to how to act in front of the public’s prying eyes or else doesn’t care.
We live in an increasingly uptight society when it comes to mothering and safety. Even the best mothers have those days when they trip while carrying their baby. Britney’s right; accidents happen. And we’d all be able to accept that if Britney didn’t look so clueless so often around her little Sean P.
Shamelessly smacking gum, leaning forward so that her breasts heaved out of her shirt, with way too much mascara on her eyes and her hair a screaming dye job, Britney could not have looked worse. Yet, on some level, you have to appreciate what you’re seeing – someone as unpolished as a rusty Louisiana tailpipe and a “journalist” pretending to be her friend, pretending to be on her side while all the while doing what everyone else has been doing to her and every other celebrity caught taking a fall – he’s capitalizing on the freak show. Come on, Matt, raise the bar!