Monday, September 27, 2004

Longlasting celebrity oxymoron?

The other day I made a careless comment about Britney Spears' recent marriage to Kevin Federline. I can't remember what the context was, but it was about something that didn't have a long shelf life...and I said, "probably lasts about as long as Britney Spears' new marriage will last..."

That was catty and unkind, I confess. But you have to admit there are some pretty major red flags going up about this particular union. It led my co-host Darren Marlar to bring up the subject of celebrity marriages on the air.

One caller thought we were being a little harsh on star marriages, and even our general manager, who joins us on the air as our meteorologist, opined that the divorce rate among Hollywood stars is probably no worse than that of the general public.

So I was racking my brain trying to think of longlasting celebrity marriages. There was Bob Hope and his wife Delores, before Bob passed away. I think they were married for nearly seventy years. Kirk Douglas and his wife Anne have been married fifty years, I think. Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward have been married about 46 years. Billy Crystal and his wife Janice have been married for 34 years. Mel Gibson and his wife Robyn have been married for 24 years. But it would seem to me that those unions are the exception in Hollywood, rather than the rule.

Maybe I'm being overly critical here, but it would seem that the majority of Hollywood stars go into marriage with the idea of sticking with it for as long as it's mutually enjoyable and beneficial.

Actually, it's amazing to me that any marriage can weather the inevitable storms without God as the central focus. Only then can a marriage be that "Perfect Union" that Matthew Ward sings of:

"There's a love that lasts a life time, a love between a man and wife,
A love so strong it goes beyond our reason; it flows from God above.
A perfect union formed within His hand, the hand that formed the earth, the sky, and sea
Still joins hearts together; joining them in three-part harmony.

"But there are times in every union when hard times and troubles fall,
Tearing at the seams of love, trying to deafen first love's call.
Though the winds blow and the storms of life set in,
there's a Captain who can calm the raging wind...

"Hand in hand we'll seek the Father, and the Father's precious Son, And the power of His Spirit that will keep our hearts as one..."

Oh? You thought I forgot about Monday Madness?

Not a chance. :)

As always, I invite you to join me in answering the Monday Madness questions, either here or on your own blog:

1. Pet Peeves:--Oh, wow...I know I have several, but I can't seem to think of them right now. Here's one: cigarette smoke anywhere in my near vicinity.

2. Favorite Sounds:--Rain at night...the voices of my loved ones talking and sister Lisa singing...a baby giggling...many different kinds of music...

3. Desk Items:--I must have a UniBall pen, preferably a Vision or VisionElite. (I absolutely CANNOT write with a pencil, and only certain kinds of pens will do.) Other than that: my computer, scratch paper, post-it notes, scotch tape, scissors and a letter opener.

4. Biggest Fears:--losing a loved one.

5. Biggest Challenges:--maintaining a strong prayer/devotional life. Losing weight.

6. Newest 'Toys':--I don't need toys as long as I can have books. :)

7. Most Used Words:
--"amazing," "hilarious," "awesome." I need to come up with some different superlatives.

8. Most Mispelled Words:--Honestly, I'm not bragging, but I hardly ever misspell words (ironically, I started second-guessing myself and actually looked up "misspell" to make sure it was spelled correctly!) That's not to say it doesn't happen occasionally, though.

9. Favorite Disney Characters:
--I know this is going to sound un-American, but I'm not that crazy about Disney. I do like "The Little Mermaid," because she was voiced by a Rockford girl, Jody Benson, and I think her voice is just beautiful. I tend to like the older Disney cartoons like "Cinderella."

10. Bookmarks on Your Homepage: Several work-related, like "AP Primecuts" and "iisradio." And a long list of diverse sites and blogs I visit regularly.


Jeri said...

Kirk Douglas had many women while remainng married. His wife allowed it. He believed---and she agreed---that monogamy was impossible for a man. Any marriage where both participants are so heedless of the practice of genuine love probably would last a long time, simply because the marriage is a meaningless trifle.

Michael Redgrave's marriage to Rachel Kempson Redgrave also lasted a lifetime---and he had affairs with men while she had a 30 year affair with a single man. Their marriage was a marriage of convenience.

I think you and your colleague may have missed the difference about the culture of Hollywood----that which is sacred to the American public is retained, but it is redefined into something that is entirely different from what middle-class Americans would recognize or accept.


Rodney Olsen said...

I think that most of the big names in Hollywood get used to having everything just the way they want it. They have agents, managers and 'hangers-on' ready willing and able to supply their every 'need'.

Marriage isn't like that. Marriage only works when we are prepared to put the other person first and look after their needs. Most of us find that difficult but many of us have reaped the rewards of working through issues that need to be worked through.

I'm sure that those living a 'me' centred Hollywood life would find it extremely difficult to adjust to serving someone else, especially when there are so many opportunities to get what they want without the work. Unfortunately, most of them only work out that what they thought would satisfy their desires doesn't even come close until it's too late.

Tina said...

Cindy - I agree with you about celebrity marriages and, gosh, it's a sad state of affairs. So many young people today look up to those in Hollywood and what kind of example is being set? Instead of the marriages that are newsworthy being focused on (like the Gibson, Hope, and Russel marriages) the marriages that seem to be flashes in the pan are front page news. So very sad.

In response to your comment about writing, believe me, I know where you are. While my husband's accident and your father's passing are not the same they are both times in our lives when it seems like regroup is in order. The writing will come when our hearts have healed some more.

God bless...

Ransom said...

While we're on the subject of long Hollywood marriages, don't forget George Burns and Gracie Allen (38 years), or Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy (52 years), or Paul and Linda McCartney (29 years). For all his other faults, McCartney says he and Linda were never apart except for one night. (On the other hand, he was spending that night in jail!)

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