Sunday, December 04, 2005


Won't the real Slim Shady please stand up? According to Billboard, Eminem impersonator Christopher Duncan entered a plea of guilty in the savage murder of a London Metropolitan University co-ed. Duncan, who has tattoos and hair nearly identical to Eminem, apparently picked Jagdip Najran up after his performance at a karaoke bar, took her to his apartment, beat her with a baseball bat, and stuffed her into a suitcase. The acts bear an eerie similarity to Em's video "Stan."

Also, thanks to his moronic father running off at the mouth, London police now like him for another stabbing murder of an American woman in London circa 2003.

Here in Memphis, impersonators are nothing new. Elvis Presley look-alikes are a dime a dozen between here and Vegas. They have their own culture. Artists other than the King have had their own dealings with impersonators (those who simply dress and look like the star) and impostors (those who actually try to pass themselves off as the star.) It's unclear whether Duncan, a troubled Scottish man with an appetite for drugs and petty crime, is one or the other.

What drives a person to take on another's persona, though? There are many theories about this. In fact, there's even a new pop-psych term for it: Celebrity Worship Syndrome. Some suggest that people gravitate toward these people simply because there are parts of the celebrity's persona that appeal to the person. Others believe that insecurities and lack of meaningfulness in a person's life attracts them toward celebrities.

Certainly society places great stock in celebrity entertainers. Oddly enough, it does not seem to place the same stock in those who are celebrities due to their accomplishment (i.e. Steve Forbes, Bill Gates) and in the same breath that it exalts stage performers it often debases high achievers and entrepeneurs. Our society is entertainment driven, and those who rule the silver screen and the concert halls have become our new aristocracy. And for some they become the new gods.

Yet there are now pseudo-scientists out there who are saying that celebrity worship is a good thing, though the article does express that there are unhealthy extremes that may ensnare a person who falls too deep: stalking, loss of personal identity, etc.

Here's your thought for the day: Forget about the lives of the tabloid fodder like J-Lo, Brangelina, Nick & Jess, and whomever the grocery market rags pimp out to you for your money and time. Instead, focus on being yourself. Make your own life extraordinary.

Mr. Duncan may think he's the real Slim Shady, but for now, the only rap he's going to get is life behind bars.


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