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Unpopular Ideas

Ramblings and Digressions from out of left field, and beyond....

Location: Piedmont of Virginia, United States

All human history, and just about everything else as well, consists of a never-ending struggle against ignorance.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Anna Nicole Smith -- A Study in Astonishment

For a long time I paid no attention to anything that was presented about Anna Nicole Smith. I knew vaguely that she was a blond Playboy pinup or some such and that she married a rich guy, who, however, was quite a few decades her senior, and -- not entirely unexpectedly -- he promptly died and left her some "long bread" -- an old and familiar story and not really worth much notice.

But then I saw a documentary a few years ago, on her background and on the family members that she, like Janis Joplin before her, quickly left behind in the Texas dust. The contrast between her quite ordinary family members and Smith herself in her jazzed-up guise of the modern world was interesting. I looked at her images closer, and I saw how astonishing she was in the way that she had fashioned herself -- the picture of modern American female excess.

But with her the astonishment had just begun, and it isn't contained so much in her physical exaggerations or in what kind of aspirations she has or in what kind of person she is, as it is in the things that happen in her life.

First there is that thing about marrying the rich guy and then having him die. That propelled her into a long and bitter legal battle with her husband's family, especially his son, that has lasted for years and still may not be over.

Then, just in the last year, her chief opponent, that son, followed his father into the grave. It would appear that that might have given Ms Smith an easier shot at gathering the millions unto herself, but hardly had that happened when she was in the Bahamas, happily giving birth, at age 36, to a baby glamor girl, only to have her joy suddenly and severely dashed when her 20-year old son came to see her and the baby. Apparently he took some pharmaceuticals that he shouldn't have mixed, took a seat in the hospital, and died.

And on top of that, it was reported that the man who claims to be the father of the new baby was suing for custody of the baby, on the grounds that Anna Nicole Smith is too devastated by the loss of her son to be a good mother. Just three days later the man was said to be doing this!

It is impossible to imagine what Anna Nicole Smith must be going through now, and to think of the cards that have been dealt her.

Taken together, it all actually goes past astonishment.


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