Tuesday, June 7, 2011

What's A Weiner To Do?

Anthony Weiner's self-immolation is a disappointment to fiction writers everywhere, reducing the old chestnut Ripped From The Headlines to Oh, Another One Of Those Idiot Assholes Did It Again.

Writers make their living observing from the sidelines, borrowing from the mash ups and smash ups of other people's lives, adding a wrinkle here and there to keep the lawyers happy, and going down the road, delighting in the Schadenfreude of others, thankful for their frailties and grateful that no one is paying as much attention to us are we are to them.

Public figures are a great source of material. Their high profiles magnify their falls from grace and save us the trouble of thinking up stuff on our own.

So how are we supposed to feel when they keep making the same mistakes over and over again? Forget about their responsibilities to their wives, families, staffs, constituents and predatory bloggers from both sides of the political aisle. What about us? Give us something new to work with! I'm begging you!

Politicians have gotten worse than network TV executives. NBC hits it big with Friends and every other network tries to duplicate that success with a knockoff show. New York Congressman Christopher Lee emails a shirtless photo of himself to a woman, not his wife, and he's out on his ear. Now Weiner goes him not one better, but at least six women better. You call that news!

And don't get me started about Arnold Schwarzenegger, John Ensign and the granddaddy of douche bags, John Edwards. These guys are old school and old news in the crumb bum and creep sweepstakes.

C'mon! We writers deserve better! How about a little creativity, a little originality! You've got the power, the position and the technology! Put a little effort into this. After all, it's not all about you.

On the other hand, they say that there are no new stories since the Bible or at least since Shakespeare and that what separates writers is how well we tell those stories. Maybe that's true and as much as I would like politicians and celebrities to do the heavy lifting for me, I guess I'll have to pick up my oar.

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