(Notice This post contains in parts a healthy amount of sarcasm and a few sophomorically choice words... boobs.)
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that enjoying attention is not a crime. Certainly not one that cancels humanitarian efforts or talent. Following the rabbit trail of links that are my daily intake of the internet, I came across an image of Lady Gaga with her arm around a homeless dude. She gave him some cash (visually $20) and a rose and let someone snap a couple photos. Folks were clamoring shenanigans. She only gave him $20, and she's rich! (not that I'd ever give them that much, they'd spend it all on smack... or is that Honey Smacks, I can never recall which...) Of course she had a photo crew standing by! This is the MEAT DRESS all over again! Where does she get off?! She's a celebrity who *gasp!* enjoys attention!
Recently I posted on facebook about one lady I adore in the performing world, Amanda Palmer (whom some of you may know from the Dresden Dolls, others her moving Ted Talk, or perhaps her high geek profile marriage to high profile geek icon Neil Gaiman, or maybe her controversial Kickstarter) and her response to the UK tabloid paper, the Daily Mail. One thing that never fails to come up is the fact that she did a kickstarter on a scale that surprised and shocked many. She Kick-started an album release, by taking pledges for pre-order and took in $1.2 million dollars... which went to cover packaging and shipping for all those pre-orders and even some to (most horrifying of all!) her. The artist and performer actually creating the music that people were receiving!
The audacity of a celebrity, who willingly interacts with her fans so blatantly, so directly, letting them pay her lodging tab by letting her couchsurf with them when she is in town. That's a bit presumptuous, isn't it? She just posts on her blog or twitter where she's going to be and these people, who appreciate her art just let themselves be used as her personal bed and breakfast. Plus, she keeps them up late singing to them, sharing meals, and personal stories and just talking into the night. This heinous rebellion against the media industry in their plastic cola-bottle towers and the illusion of separation between us normal folk (some might say lowly peons, but that's a little much, I think...) and those intangibly talented ones of perfect body and hair that we are compelled to bestow the robe of celebrity, is a hard one to swallow. And you know when she responded to the Daily Mail back in July? Me neither, I only just heard about it and it made my heart all squishy.
Well she get's naked and musically calls them out on the misogynist body shaming they subjected her to following a boob slip photo from a recent concert. It has people in arms not because she and thousands of other celebrities have photos published without their permission showing nip-slips, baby-bumps, panty-less heinies, imperfect bodies wrapped in bikinis or strolling in sweats, but rather that she responded with such vulgar language and willingly allowed people to publish her nude image in defiance of the whole gossip magazine culture. It was also kind of sexy and you may suppose that as a feminist I can't say that. It makes people uncomfortable that something can be provocative, for a good reason, and still be slightly arousing. That someone acting that way can be comfortable being sexy, and not be interested in pursuing sex with you, and still be happy interacting with you as a peer.
She does it for attention, some say. Well, duh. Performers and extroverts on every scale will occasionally enjoy an audience. Shoot, I bet some introverts could enjoy an audience from time to time. The form most people enjoy is called conversation. I say, it's not wrong. She entertains, she evokes discourse about real issues, she demystifies the feminine form, she seems to be a genuinely pleasant person, and she is quite extroverted. She reminds me of a certain large part of myself, the person I think of myself as, anyhow. Yes, I think about myself and have a concept of that person. I give *myself* attention. I love living and thrive by interacting. I get incredibly depressed being a homebody and am happiest being entertained by interacting with people I care about.
She who enjoys attention is not automatically a narcissist.
She does not automatically become self absorbed.
If she did something cool and decides to re-tweet the accolades, we can see that she is exuberant about the feedback she's getting. It is okay to say that Wil Wheaton shook our hand, because his on-screen persona is a bit aloof (some would say a dick). If he plays a boardgame with some fans he is a hero (and yeah, he kind of is), but don't dare a singer-songwriter play Monopoly at a fan's two bedroom apartment five minutes from downtown by train, because she's gonna take advantage of everybody and never have to do any real work. Like, who does she think she is? huh? Some ancient greek philosopher people love to bring up in educated and sound debates? Perhaps Basho?! Fie!
Next time you see a person in your life talking themselves up and it bothers you, maybe it can be treated as most media groups would a publicist piece. Or maybe, instead of talking behind their back, you could mention, "Hey, I just wanted to say that sounds awesome, and I know you don't need me to validate you. Thank you for sharing that about yourself. I just felt the need to draw attention to myself as well. I hope you can forgive me, but understand if you can't. Feel free to respond, or not. Gosh this punch is good."
Now do not take this to mean I am never bothered by Drama Queens. That **** is a whole other article, that I doubt I shall EVER have the patience to write. I will borrow from a recent LHC thread and say calling someone else ugly, to make yourself feel pretty, makes you a righteously ugly person in yourself. Or in more general language: making trouble for someone to make your situation seem better is kind of a ****ty thing to do. That said, I am sorry about your self esteem, you may want to take some you time and get to find ways to love yourself.