Jobs for the (old) Boys

One day, while Winnie the Pooh was sitting with Eeyore, staring at his empty honey pot, he suddenly said, “One day, I suppose, I might be happy.”

Eeyore said, “Never mind happiness, when will I be famous?”
Poo knitted his brow and said, “It’s the same thing.”
That is the sad fact of modern life.
There have always been children who wanted to be musical. In the old days, there were well trodden career paths. There were Working Men’s Clubs for instance. Those not good enough for the clubs contented themselves with brass bands or performing their party pieces at parties rather than audition rooms. Occasionally, someone had their ‘lucky break’ and was signed by someone. The old outlets for moderate talent have disappeared but something else has happened. Advertising revenue that used to pay for The Palladium Show and similar, high quality entertainment, has dried up. ITV has had to fall back on self-funding phone in cash cows like, The X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent. This feeds our increasingly narcissistic society and ironically enough erects barriers to the same fame-hungry teenagers it encourages.
Prince Charles had an outburst a few years ago that is relevant here.
Consumer tyranny has brought about the ‘person centred’ ethic where the customer is right even when he is wrong. Solicitors give advice and are told by their clients that they are wrong. Worse, we all tend to imagine we are customers – mere ‘consumers’ of education rather than beneficiaries. Some people do not like the ‘idea’ of climate change or evolution or the spherical earth, so they tell scientists they are wrong. In a self-centred society like ours, your chance of getting funding for research can be affected by how popular your evidence is rather than how good it is.
Kids told, “You’re not good enough,” will just go on looking for someone who tells them a different story and waste years of their lives chasing moonshine when they could be reasonably happy with their lot. That is their tragedy, but it is money in the bank for the likes of Simon Cowell and Steve Jobs. More the latter; Simon Cowell is Steve Jobs’ lapdog.


About Zoe Nightingale

I am a writer of short stories, novels, poetry and non fiction.
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