Fama crescit eundo*


* or perhaps pedalando 🙂

It’s a day off cycling. I only have two tasks to complete: getting rid of the cold I’ve been carrying for the last two days, and do the washing. So far all is well, coughing and sneezing less and I manage to find my way through the “centrale de paiement” to get the right “lavage”, and, while I’m waiting for that to finish and to program the right “sechage”, I have some time to kill so I thought to put down some of the thoughts I’ve had over the last few days on celebrity.

Can you believe it?

I was quite surprised when Cathy the other night asked me how I was coping with my newly acquired celebrity. I had not thought about it too much other than from a number point of view, and even then only to the extent of marvelling at the stats provided by Google Analytics on the traffic of the website. By the way it turns out I have some following in Brazil.

She was right though, I appear to have almost overnight acquired a degree of following. New people are hooking on the twitter feed, the like count is growing on Facebook and there are comments coming in on the blog entries. What’s going on? I’m only riding the bike. We’ll get to what’s going on in a moment but let’s first desert this celebrity thing.

I certainly don’t make it to the “new celebrity” threshold, that would be the here today, gone tomorrow celebrity of people being famous for being famous. As a matter of fact I’m getting into the jungle without any invitations, cameras or payment. I think the kind of celebrity that firs me is very limited and quietly parks me into the “person I met in the flesh who’s doing a crazy thing” bucket, let’s call it “the odd ball”.

This category shares some of the characteristics of the “new celebrity” category in the way it performs very much like a fad does, the craziness quickly looses it’s interest much in the way we get used very quickly to the intense light when we open the curtains in the morning, and in a very short time we do not see all this light being at all out of place.

The “new celebrity” is a very recent human achievement and it has been made necessary by the proliferation of channels that are available to individual for the promotion of their individual exploits. In this way also my condition resembles the “new celebrity” type in the sense that the interest I have been creating would have not been if I had not had access to publishing platforms inhabited by my followers.

Can you remember him?

It is interesting how the creation of the container has driven the need for the creation of the content. It has been like we bought this tool so we had to use it regardless of whether we needed the end product or not. I remember being in exactly that position a few years ago when, due to my profession, I inhabited all of these networked social media and I was trying with great gusto to say something that people might be interested in only to stimulate interest in me as a digital entity.

What a waste of mine and their time, I know it now. It is paradoxical how, what I am doing now, which was born out of giving me something to do in the evening, is obtaining the effect I desired back then, only problem is that desire has now gone.

Which is just as well as what is happening now is not going to last.

Cathy said that the only thing she could think when the interest grew in in her activities was that she was not doing anything special, I feel just the same. She also said that this type of celebrity will elapse with the end of the exploit, in that I think my case will be different, I think the interest will vanish well before the end of the ride.

This is not a bad thing, there are too many people interested in their name to be etched in the mind of others. As I have said many times I am doing what I’m doing for very personal reasons that have more to do with what I am running from that what I’m running towards.

Regardless of that I am not so arrogant in wanting to pass my own motives along with my performance and if as a byproduct of what I do someone will find in themselves to move away from something they deep inside know is not for them and towards something they want, then, well… good for them.

It is not who we are or where we come from that defines us but it is what we do.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Julca says:

    sei in attesa del tuo bucato come nella mitica pubblicità della Levi’s?! Ma come si chiamava lui?…
    Notte caro Alex!
    Grazie che ci porti con te.

  2. Cathy says:

    What!!! me? Right again? Alex are you sure you are OK? two acknowledgements in as many days of my general ‘rightness’… you must becoming mentally unhinged 😉

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