Sick Sad World

by Shelton Bumgarner

It’s just sad that a guy can’t have a celebrity crush anymore without the actual person you have the crush on somehow, someway finding out about it through their social media team (if nothing else) and growing concerned.

Or maybe it’s just that I, specifically, have been writing about someone in what I felt was an obscure corner of the Web. But if anything, I’ve learned there is no “obscure corner of the Web” anymore. Everything you put online is everywhere and nowhere at the same time. So if you’re a middle-aged weirdo who just fancies a celebrity because of their looks and wit, then, well, watch out. People are going to be profiling you left and right.

But whatever. Anyone who is actually, like, paying fucking attention, would realize I’m completely harmless. I may be something of an eccentric, but I don’t feel anything I’ve written online would actually concern anyone. Or maybe I’m overthinking it. Maybe what I fear is going on isn’t going on.

Yet I just don’t want to risk it. I don’t want the hassle of a celebrity’s social media team poking back at me, looking at my LinkedIn profile and the like. It definitely puts a chill on things to write about when you’re as bored as I am right now. I really need to get back to work on my novel. I just have to summon up the courage to face my fears when it comes to writing it. That’s kind of tough.

Of Celebrity Crushes And Online Discourse

by Shelton Bumgarner

Over the course of the last few years, I’ve learned something unsettling — celebrities or there “people” monitor what people have to say about them online a lot more than you might ever imagine. I know this because a few years ago when I had way too much time on my hands I had a little bit of an obsessive celebrity crush on Alexa Chung.

Now, let me say from the beginning that I was never hostile or threatening in my celebrity crush, but I was obsessive. Even then, however, it soon became obvious that at least someone, somewhere, was aware of my interest in Ms. Chung, even though it was being done in an obscure corner of the Internet where, like, maybe 20 people were seeing it during the course of any particular day.

But I learned my lesson. I honestly don’t care anymore. What happened with Ms. Chung a few years ago was just a quirky little phase in my life that has long passed. But it was unnerving, to say the least. It was unnerving because it took some of the fun out of the Internet.

I thought because of “practical obscurity” I could just talk about how much like Ms. Chung obsessively and no one would care or notice. But checking my visitor logs on my Website indicated that someone, somewhere did care and they weren’t very happy about the situation.

Anyway, I was and am harmless and I only write about this at all now because whenever an attractive celebrity catches my eye, I realize it’s for the best if I don’t even mention her, anywhere, online. It’s just best to keep any interest to myself because inevitably any interest would be taken the wrong way by someone, somewhere.

Maybe I’ve grown up. Maybe that’s what’s happened. I don’t think about things in the same way as I used to. I am much more mellow about celebrities. I’d much rather write about trying to write a novel or a screenplay than any sort of celebrity.