Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A Nonstory Kind Of Story

So Nicole Buffett's surname is a well-known one. No, she's not the daughter of margarita-sipping star Jimmy Buffett, but rather the granddaughter of investor and philanthropist Warren Buffett. Well, sort of. Warren's son adopted her when he married her mother.

Why is this interesting? Well, because I happened to read this profile/story of Nicole in Marie Claire tonight. I obviously know that Buffett is one of the wealthiest men in the world, but is it really newsworthy that one of his grandchildren "struggles" to get by with no health insurance?Well, maybe. But if you were to read the real lede to this piece, you'd think that Nicole, a single woman, was living in poverty. Yet she makes a little more than 40K a year.

I could be just looking for something to write about here, but I just find this story pointless, rambling, self-serving and, seriously, somewhat insensitive. I don't care at all about one of the 1,083,039 32-year-old struggling artists in the world, no matter what her last name is. Of course, Nicole Buffett wants her name out there because she's obviously using it to sell paintings with articles like this. And by appearing in documentaries like "The One Percent."

But anyway, does Marie Claire think its readers are going to care about a 32-year-old artist making $40K a year, a figure most artists would kill for? Especially in these times? That's something to think about.

So what should we care about? Well, first of all let me mention that there will be no video this week. Basically it's a busy week for both me and the online department, so we'll return next week, which is probably the week you may predicted there wouldn't be a video. Well, you'd have been wrong. You just won't get one this Thursday. OK? Sorry.

My list will be out next Friday, the 19th, but if you're in the mood for an early best-of piece, one done by a local paper, head over and read the Advocate's here. Some of their choices I agree with, others I just think are people reacting to hype. I mean, I'm really sick of hearing about how great Metallica's recent effort is great. Really? Um, it just copies the older material and gives it a glossy sheen. I really believe this is a case of certain critics falling for record-label hype. But any list with Okkervil River and Kanye West is good by me.

The Advocate also did a local list, a long one of basically everything good released this year. I've been working on mine this week, and I have to say it's tough to get it down to 10 this year. Usually I don't have any problems doing that. It was a good year for local albums.

And speaking of great, great music, Mohegan Sun has announced another Britney Spears date. She'll be at the Arena May 2. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Saturday. Call Ticketmaster at (203) 624-0033 or log on to the Web site.

And with that, I'm done. Check out the video at the top of this entry. I decided I would start posting live performances by folks who put on my favorite concerts of the year. Enjoy Shearwater's "Rooks."

1 comment:

sj said...

I used to work as a writer making significantly less than $40K a year, and for a while freelanced and had no health insurance, except the major medical plan i got through school. have times changed THAT much in 7 years? i think not. i'm pretty certain my quality of life would have been much better at $40K.

my husband is a huge WB fan and has read a million books about him. or, you know, 3. but i've heard all about how he (wb. not my husband.) lives in the same house in omaha, doesn't give exorbitant gifts to his family, etc. i think it's interesting -- and certainly a far cry from the laguna beach/hills/whatever other reality like show that i don't watch crowd. family is funny, though, and i don't think i'd be willing to speak about my family on camera to a national audience. i'd be even more skiddish if my grampa was warren buffett.

but the bigger question is: why are you reading marie claire?

although now i know what to do with my hair for the holidays, and what top 10 tricks i can do to fix my makeup before the next party.