Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Thursday, March 2, 2017

patience and fame

 It has been said each of us will have a moment. The statement is attributed to Andy Warhol but it has been disputed by some. It doesn't really matter because Warhol will receive the credit forever. Known for his art but remembered by many for something he may have said. Rather an ironic thing. That came to mind as I looked at a picture of my wife's Uncle George. Uncle George left us in May of 2015. He never married, served in WW2, and returned home. He lived with his parents his whole life and passed in the very house they had all lived in. Uncle George did have his fifteen minutes of fame. He was a contestant on the Price is Right. That was back in the day when Bill Cullen was the host. He made it to the showcase and won ! It was his fifteen minutes and ones he never forgot. He told everyone he ever met about that. In his old age he loved to tell the doctors, nurses, and anyone else he came into contact with about that experience. It was a sweet thing. He so enjoyed telling that story. I would say it was his fifteen minutes of fame, no doubt about that. It was his proudest moment. An accomplishment unequaled in his mind. I remember him for so much more. But I was thinking about that fame.
 I don't think you can plan for your fifteen minutes, it just happens. If Uncle George hadn't won that showcase would it still have been his moment ? Perhaps , one can't say with certainty about such things. It was the best possible end to the story however and so cemented it in his mind. I'm still waiting for my time. Will I know it when it happens ? I'm not so sure about that. Truth is I'm not certain that Uncle George felt that was his fifteen minutes either. I just assumed it had to be because of the frequency of the story being told. I never asked him that question directly. Was that his proudest moment ? Are our proudest moments always our " famous " moments ? I'd have to answer no in that regard. Many folks are remembered for things they wished they hadn't done. You may also be remembered for something you had no active role in at all ! So, I guess what I'm thinking is that " fame " has to exist in your own mind to be valid. Uncle George sure thought he was " famous " for having been on that show. He did have a cassette tape of the show and would play it back for you, whether you asked him too or not !
 I don't think fame is something we should chase. Fame is a fleeting thing for sure, and folks are fickle. Of course that presumes the fame you seek is adoration from others. Uncle George had no such requirement. He just reveled in that memory. Each time he thought of it the spotlight shined. I believe Uncle George was onto something there. That is why I say I remember him for so much more than that show. A quiet unassuming man that had a quiet confidence about him. If fame means being remembered, Uncle George had that. Although he thought of his fame as being on the Price is Right his true fame was more of a slow burn than a flare up. It is those flare ups that Warhol referenced. I don't think I have had any major flare up, hence no " fame. " Will I get one ? I can't know that but I can hope for it. I'd be lying if I said I didn't. I think we all would like that recognition at least once in our lives. For Uncle George winning the showcase was the proof of that ! He was a winner ! Isn't that what fame is all about ? If I'm famous, I'm a winner ! It is true that some seek fame at all costs. Some will take fame over sanity. That's why folks do some crazy stuff.
 Uncle George has shown me that lasting fame has little to do with being " famous. " It has everything to do with being remembered. One doesn't have to be famous to be remembered. We are remembered for our actions in life. You don't have to stand out to be remembered. Yes people remember those that are different. How well do you know the famous ? For the majority we really don't know them at all. We admire whatever they have accomplished, whether it is singing, dancing, or making movies. Your fame depends upon what you are remembered for. Is it better to be remembered for your accomplishments or the person that you were ? Fifteen minutes or a lifetime ? Well it isn't easy being patient.