Jeff Pearlman

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The Royal Wedding & the Boredom of Our Lives

Today, at long last, I am happy. William and Kate are married. They committed themselves to love and compassion … and a lifetime of meaningless bullshit.

Can me old fashioned, but I probably wouldn’t really look forward to my life turning into, eh, photo ops. But that’s what we’re talking about here. Once, not all tat long ago, Kate was your normal chick in her 20s, able to go out and grab a pint, walk alone along the river when she wanted a a break, catch a movie, dance a jig, laugh, cry, smoke, fart, burp.

Now—over.

Her life isn’t over, but her freedom is. I can imagine nothing worse than being a part of the Royal Family. Not that the family, itself, is probably so bad. But where’s the fun? The joy? The ability to say, “Fuck it, let’s grab a slice!” She will now be under the microscope for the rest of her life. As Diana learned the hard way, this doesn’t even end with divorce. You no longer belong to your parents or your friend or even yourself. You are England’s. You are the world’s.

Along those lines, why do we care? Seriously, why? Two youngsters get married, and all the talk is about what dress she’ll wear? Really? Here’s my theory: We’re bored. All of us. We always think other people have more interesting lives, more fulfilling lives, more amazing lives. So we look elsewhere, in hope of a shining star or a spark of familiarity. We make people famous, then wonder what that fame is like. We scream and cheer and reach out, hoping to touch what seems beyond us.

Truth is, it’s not beyond us. It just … is. Fame is nothing more than normal people being surrounded. There’s no magical key to happiness; no fruitful station waiting around the corner. I’ve known many famous people in my days as a writer, and few seem especially happy or content. With fame, after all, comes insecurity; ego; hurt. With fame also comes an ineviatble fall. You get old. You get washed up. People mock your declining looks. Your lack of gusto. That smudge of mustard on your upper lip.

It’s an ugly, ugly thing.

  • reg dunlap

    We watched the wedding because we’re sick of Mel Kiper and ESPN’s bloated NFL coverage. Speaking of Kiper, does anyone know his batting average on his ‘mock’ drafts? I bet its closer to the Mendoza line than what people think starting with calling Ryan Leaf parallel to Peyton Manning. Let’s have some accountability.

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Once again, Jeff Pearlman has produced an exhaustively researched, elegantly written book that re-creates one of the most colorful and memorable teams of the modern era. No basketball fan's bookshelf will be complete without it.

— Seth Davis, author of Wooden: A Coach's Life