Perception vs Reality: The Makings of an Overnight Celebrity

4 11 2010


Hey guys!!  Here’s an essay I wrote a while back after some crazy experiences and an awakening back in 2003 or 2004. I think this got published on some online outlets, and I had that shit on floppy disk and lost it, but I found the only paper copy in existence, lol. Now i’m posting it for u guys… Feel free to comment!

“I love it when you call me Big Poppa…” Don’t we all? Screaming fans, VIP treatment, flashbulbs of the paparazzi; wouldn’t you like to have that?  Well what if I told you this life could be yours for a night, heck maybe even a week if you’re on vacation?  You would probably say that life is reserved, blocked by that velvet rope that discerns the celebrity from the ordinary person.  I say that belief is played out: I can make you a celebrity overnight.  It’s all quite simple really, i mean, what makes someone a celebrity?  It’s all about perception.  We MAKE people celebrities.  Wait, let me re-emphasize: perception, perception, perception.  Got it?  Now follow this… if I told you the guy next to you was a bazillionaire, what clues could you use to see if I was telling the truth?  He could just have that look, maybe his car is an indicator (borrowed), or maybe he wears designer clothes (knock offs).  All of those things can be manipulated by anyone.  What makes him a celebrity is me making you believe that he is.  Altering perception through hype is gold.  Just ask Lil Jon or P. Diddy.  They get you pumped up, and you don’t even know why, but you just follow along.

I saw a movie called ‘Slackers’ recently and in it, one of the main characters narrated a sequence where he tried out his, “Seed of Doubt” theory on two girls at a college party.  “The technique to manipulating people’s perception” was easy he said. First he said what he wanted the other person to believe out loud. Usually he would be met with casual interest.  Then, once he got the person’s full attention, said it again with authority and conviction, making eye contact, and most importantly, believing it.  The response was complete adoration by a newly converted, star-struck fan.  I used to host a party downtown called, “Overnight Celebrity.”  Every person that came through the door was a celebrity.  As the host, I was at the beck and call of every patron there because who wouldn’t want to cater to someone of star caliber?  You are all celebrities as far as I’m concerned.  I hear the new radio ads for Moda’s Sunday night event saying the same thing.  Walk in a civilian, walk out an overnight celebrity, which brings me to my next point.

Aren’t celebrities just normal people like you and me?  Of course they are.  If you’ve seen ‘Matrix: Reloaded,’ remember back to when Neo confronted the Architect.  He went on to explain to Neo that, “his being was the sum of an unbalanced equation” that inherently flawed the matrix.  In essence, Neo was the epitome of the human race.  To some degree, I believe this is true in our world as well.  We as a society have a need to hold people in high regard i.e. movie stars, pro athletes, politicians, company presidents, etc.  Do they have special powers or do the impossible?  In most cases no, they just do things that we think we cannot.  So we put our hopes and dreams in them and place them on pedestals because we are afraid to do what they do.  Celebrities are the Neo’s of the real world.  The sum of what society believes to be the ideal of a person.  We want to be like them, wear their clothes, watch their movies, and look at countless magazine photos of them pumping gas and eating ice cream.  Look around, the fascination with celebs is like a virus.  We have gossip magazines, fan clubs, product endorsements, etc.  Why not get to enjoy a little of that life yourself?

I know some of you could care less, sorry to distract you from reading US magazine while simultaneously watching last week’s ‘The Bachelor/The Bachelorette’ in your J. Lo/Sean John sweatpants, listening to your new Ron Artest cd.  But I know some of you are glued to your screen and can’t wait for me to get on with how you can do it.  Here are some examples of personal, “research” conducted in the field.  Example #1: While on a trip to South Beach for Spring Break my senior year of college, two friends and I ran into a star NFL player.  Instead of asking for an autograph, I asked him what he did to let a club know he was showing up.  He said if knows he’s going somewhere in advance, he’ll have his publicist call in advance, if not, he’ll just show up because he’s very recognizable.  Luckily, I happened to do some research before I left home on movies that were coming out that summer.  I picked a movie with Toby Maguire because, ‘Spiderman’ was hot at the time.  The character in the movie, ‘Seabiscuit’ had a decent role for being a no name actor.  Kingston Decour was my celebrity.  The movie wasn’t coming out until the summer, so there was no way to verify the information. I called up a hot club on the strip and said I was a publicist for said actor.  At the end of the conversation, I had secured back door access, VIP table, bottle service, and security. Suffice it to say, all nine of us in our crew lived like kings that night!  And the best part was that everything was 100% absolutely free.  People were dying to give us all the perks and we were absolute nobodies.  Of course I captured it all on tape if you think I’m lying.

Example #2: In Ft. Lauderdale, I want to a club with a friend, a camera, and a mission.  I wanted in the club for free, free drinks, and film it all for my friends to see what went down that night.  I approached the manager, gave him the schtick about how we worked for a small production company and did a globe trotting party show similar to E! Wild On. We just wanted to film inside to get a feel for the club and put it on our show.  Walked past the line, free drinks all night, and proof that it happened.  Mission Accomplished!

Example #3: I was out downtown one night just after Thanksgiving with a friend of mine.  I had this article in mind when I decided to perform a series of social experiments using my friend as a guinea pig.  A nubile co-ed approached us and struck up a conversation.  WHen my friend leaned over the bar to order a drink, I discreetly told the woman that he had a part on the hit show, ‘Las Vegas,’ but was spending the holidays in his hometown.  I built the story up more a la “Seed of Doubt” technique and she promptly asked my friend to dance.  Some time later, back by the bar, a friend of that girl approaches my friend and starts dancing with him, threw her arms around his neck and started kissing him!  Must be nice to be a t.v. star. Believe it or not, a player for the Browns tried to talk to her afterwards, trying to repeat the results I bet, but she went back to my friend.  Simply amazing!

My last example taked place at the House of Blues Grand Opening.  At an invitation only event, there must be tons of VIP’s right?  But to be backstage you have to be a special person right?  Absolutely wrong.  Who am I?  I’m just a humble promoter/cell phone salesman who just happens to know a bunch of people.  Probably by accident anyways, but there I was chatting with the VP of House of Blues International.  This was sandwiched between face time with Dan Ackroyd and Jim Belushi, and the locals who brought HOB to Cleveland.  Did this come by accident? No, because in my mind, I already know I’m a celebrity, the general public just doesn’t know about it yet. We ALL are!  I’m a gatecrasher to show other people that it can be done.  But the difference between me and the other gatecrashers is that I fit the part.  If you have the attitude and act like you’re supposed to be there, you’re a welcome guest.  Get something back for all those duckets you spend at the club.  Make someone appreciate your presence.  Like that MasterCard commercial where Peyton Manning is cheering on the everyday people.  That’s how it should be.  Let the stars be awe struck by you, not the other way around.  As far as I’m concerned, the person reading this is a celebrity, just like the guy who just passed the Bar exam, and the woman executive at KeyBank who calls the shots.  If you are going out, there, making it, doing your thing and spreading the love… you’re it to me.

Andre 3000 said it best in Outkast’s song, “Elevators:” “I replied that I’ve been going through the same things that he has. True I got more fans than the average man, but not not enough loot to last me, till the end of the week I live by the beat like you live check to check. If you don’t move your feet, then I don’t eat, so we like neck to neck.”  With that said, I want everybody who reads this to get their butts downtown and take the self esteem up a notch.  Hold your head up and party like a rock star.  Don’t be surprised if an average guy like me asks for your autograph.  I love celebrities, and you love it when I call you big poppa, don’t you? Way to go superstars!


Get It Together Cleveland

5 10 2010

I just had a mini rant on twitter just now abt this whole paying to come into a parking lot thing for Browns games… Baffled by ppl who are outraged @ this $5 to tailgate thing. Its a private lot, they can do what they want. Now parking lots know how clubs feel!  Cleveland is so used to lowest common denominator entertainment that paying to see real talent is out of the question… Even if there’s free drinks inside that would negate the cover. Cleveland is so spoiled by everything bein free, or super cheap (lakewood), they scoff at ppl when they ask them to pay 4 stuff that ain’t theirs. Especially when stuff is posted saying that you have to pay! I don’t get it. I’m gonna walk into Lola and scoff when they tell me to pay those high ass prices. Just tell them that that is ridiculous.  See how well that works.

If it’s not cool there, why is it really cool anywhere else? On a side note, that’s why I hate Lakewood is so close to Downtown, because it lowers the value of stuff goin on here. Like I know cats that make almost 100k a year and choose to rent a room in Lakewood, rather than just live downtown. C’mon cheapskate. If ur young and single, there’s really no reason to not live dtown amongst other young people. It’s all a trickle down, but i digress…

Here’s the reality of the situation. If it’s not yours, pay. If you dont wanna pay, then start your own restaurant, parking lot, electronics store, car dealership, hotel, apartment complex, grocery store, etc. Simple as that. Until then… Don’t get mad when you see posted signs that say pay for that thing that it is that you want.

I have never complained I had to pay for some shit that wasn’t mine… It makes you look silly. Doorguys at clubs laugh at u and make fun of you after you walk away. #fact Don’t succumb to that crazy line of thinking.

Girl Throws A Chair @ DJ E-V

25 07 2010

Child throwing a chair

Never a dull moment over here at Relapse…. Chair throwing anyone?

DJ Pauly D Makes “Music”

21 07 2010

Pauly D

Just when you thought it wasn’t going to get worse…. POW!!! Pauly D, of ‘Jersey Shore‘ fame has now released a song… It’s a conglomerate of utter stupidity, Sadat X – Funk Dat, Crystal Waters – 100% Pure Love, fist pumping (which i’m TOTALLY not opposed to), ground slapping, and preaching the gospel of GTL (Gym, Tan, Laundry)…. Lord help us. Thank you Perez Hilton for tipping me off to what all the dum dumb girls at the club will soon be asking me for. I’ll head them off at the pass.  The song is called, “Beat Dat Beat (It’s Time To) and you’ll have to hear it to believe it.  Comin to you live via iTunes.  You can also find it in the iPod of a jagoff near you!

Who’s Got Money To Blow?…. Obviously These Cats

7 07 2010

“I need a dollar, dollar, dollar is what I need. If I share with you my story, won’t you share your dollar with me” – Aloe Blacc

Times are tough nowadays, but you wouldn’t know it from watching some of the retarded things that people do with the money that they have- or borrow, or steal, or front like its theirs but it’s really someone else’s…. Here’s some of the most fucked up things I’ve seen out there, and I know there’s worse, but here’s some gems….

People needing dollars:

Boxers flashing dollars:

Rappers flashing dollars…. Shapow!:

And prob the ultimate SHAPOW! moment is some cats actually BURNING $100k!!! Somebody please take it from them, or introduce them to someone who can turn it into something other than roadkill, custom jewels, or ashes, lol.

Golden Child Productions Takes On Cleveland (A couple years ago)

8 02 2010

So I get home today and I’m uber excited to start weeding through my stuff to find clothes to send to goodwill. I’m moving soon and I like to pack light.  Esp when you’re moving cross-country.  My goal is just to fit everything into my Navy seabag, and put the rest in a trunk that i’m going to ship.  That’s just how I roll.  So during this cleansing process, I came across this thing that I wrote a few years ago between 2005 and 2008 I think. I can’t even remember why I wrote it, but it was sandwiched between an Ernst & Young business plan handout and a survivalist exercise that I saved from one of my business classes in college (thanks Prof. Wayne Yerxa (can’t remember if that’s his last name or not, oops!)), so I guess it had something to do with that.  This was based on the first incarnation of a promotional company I started, Golden Child Productions, which has since changed to Luxe Lifestyles, just in case you start to get lost.

So for your enjoyment, I am gonna copy it down and why don’t you guys tell me what you think… k?

Over the past decade, Downtown Cleveland has experienced a reinvention. It is still a long way from fruition, but the signs are evident.  Once known for its industrial output, Cleveland has highlighted its large professional class. Lawyers and doctors abound and thrive in such institutions as Jones Day, Squire Sanders & Dempsey, Cleveland Clinic, and University Hospitals. Some of these institutions are world renown. Cleveland is also investing in biotech, R&D, as well as moving steadily into the technology age with companies like Hyland Software, One Cleveland, and Thunder::tech leading the charge.

What these companies all have in common is the need for tech savvy, educated, young people to fuel growth, bring new perspectives to foster innovative breakthroughs, as well as replace a burgeoning baby boomer working class ready to retire.  Jobs are a key element in attracting and retaining talented young people. But factors such as housing, low cost of living, and entertainment are needed to round out an ideal young professional lifestyle.

People come to Cleveland for many reasons, and the number of people who do is steadily increasing.  Places like Tremont and Ohio City are experiencing rapid growth. Downtown Cleveland is also attracting more residents. Only only needs to point out the thriving Warehouse District, E. 4th Neighborhood, the up and coming Avenue District, the Pinnacle, and the Flats Redevelopment Project for proof. The creation of these trendy, urban chic developments means trendy, urban chic tenants are asking for them.  Economic development will surge downtown as various businesses, products, and services spring up to accomodate.

In markets such as downtown Cleveland, entertainment is always a high priority. Some people like sports, some the theater, some are into concerts, and some prefer the club/bar scene.  With the upcoming influx in population, Cleveland needs to find a way to bridge the entertainment gap and do its part to ensure that the elements of attraction and retention (see earlier definition) are put in place.

Golden Child Productions recognizes these elements and seeks to put a lifestyle concept into play that will meet these, and many secondary needs as well as increase the quality and breadth of entertainment offerings for young people.  The young professional market will always be a niche, but a very powerful one, and the company that can successfully corner that market will always be coveted because youth drives the marketplace.

I Take Bein An Asshole To New Heights

26 01 2010

So my buddy who plays for the Cleveland Indians came in last night for press week.  Let’s call him “Sean.”  In the previous few weeks, I have been trying to set us up with these two girls Laura and She-ra (names have been changed).  I have known Laura for a long time and she’s always kinda been a little hard to gauge.  She chases athletes and what not, so figure out your own impression…. I won’t lead you.  So she has a roommate and they live close to me/bars downtown.

So this planning has lead to last night when we go out.  I tell them early to meet us at Liquid.  I meet up with Sean and we head over.  We catch up and grab a drink… Good times.  He’s a really good dude and it was good seein him.  A few drinks later, the ladies meet us out and we continue to have some cocktails and tell tall tales, lol.  Laura asks me if I like to eat late at night…. I obviously say yes and she says that we should get some pizza from Panini’s and then head back to their place.  So the 4 of us head over there after the bar closes.  I leave with my drink still in my hand from the bar, lol.  We have a run in w/ this drunk guy that was also at Liquid and I wind up having to tell him to get lost.  I continue to tell him to get lost, and wind up pushing him away.  Of course he falls and everyone in the bar has to turn around and see what’s up.  My friends (whom i wasn’t even out with) see what’s going on and they immediately get in the guys face, askin why he’s messin with me.  I got great friends…but i digress.

The four of us wind up at the girls’ house and we smash the pizza and start to play some games.  We throw a couple of darts and play some Foosball…. (my team loses :(, btw).  It’s getting late and it’s about that time when you decide what’s what and who’s with who.  So all of a sudden it’s just 3 of us.  Laura disappears and I’m assuming she’s in the bathroom, or slipping into something more comfortable, lol.  Sean and She-ra head to her bedroom and I’m a little confused.  I look around, realizing that i’m alone and I try to find Laura.  She’s laying in her bed w/ the covers up and tells me that I can sleep on the couch.  I immediately walk out of her room and go looking for Sean.  He comes out and he’s in his underwear, so obviously his night is going exponentially better than mine.

Laura comes out of her room and wonders what’s going on.  I say i’m leaving cause Mr. Sims does not sleep on couches (why should I? I live downtown!) and I let her know how I’m feeling.  I feel like I should tell you that I’m super drunk at this point and prob should have already been sleeping.  So I gave Laura a piece of my mind and proceed to walk out the door in the snow, in the cold, and it’s  5am.  As i’m leaving/getting home, I obviously have more to say to Laura and then the drunk texts start flowing.  Here’s the play by play….

Me: All that time convincing me u weren’t a whore for nothing? Ppl always said u were and I stuck 4 u. (Doesn’t the fact that she told me to sleep on the couch say she’s NOT a whore?  I’m still pissed because she obviously sleeps around.  She has a “batline.”  She works at the Ritz…. Baron Davis sent a picture to her phone that is her screen saver…. you do the math, again… I’m not gonna lead you (though i already did!))  p.s. I think I’m still drunk as I’m writing this.  I woke up at 3:30pm today…

Me: Guess I was wrong…….

Me: And you….. Yankee haters, your momma loved to sex up the slaves

Her: Ha marcus no one i who knows me even knows u. And if i did anything tnite it proved i wasnt

Her: What r u even talking about? (that’s a good fuckin question!!!!! and it gets worse!)

Me: Hahahahahaha so u think. I had been asking abt u @ work from ur bosses. Now I know what kinda person u are, lol. Like I said…. find out who ur dealin with (don’t know why I said that, cause I have no idea who her boss is, lol)

Me: How sweet would it be if u were fired and I was laughing?  Your choice player.

Her: You arent making sense.  I was nothing but nice to you.

Me: Pass… if u think that, u think like the nazis. U wanted for me to get out of ur house

Her: I told u u could stay.  Im just not the kind of person to let someone sleep in my bed the first time we hang out (Um… u have a batphone, yet don’t have an important job, and/or are not an important person within ur company).  No one sleeps in ur bed?  So i guess we shoulda just did it on the couch?

Me: I didn’t ask to sleep in ur bed. You’ll b hearing from.  My lawyer

Her: Umm ok i said u could sleep on the couch. U didnt want to. Goodnight

Me: Welll sweet dreams. Couch it is not

So let me just say that results are not typical.  I had no fucking clue what I was talking about.  I reread my txts and i was mortified… But what is a monday night if you don’t have a story to tell?  I’m not THAT important, but I have some hilarious stories to tell. Some are good and some are bad, but I feel like I have to recount my experiences.  If I don’t, I’m sure I’ll forget and you won’t be able to laugh at me!!