I spotted a story in the Washington Post earlier today that described the effort that Marla Maples (Donald Trump’s second wife) and Tiffany Trump (his 23-year-old daughter) were putting into looking great for Friday’s inauguration festivities.
They were trying to get their hairstyling and makeup done … for nothing.
Tricia Kelly, a freelance stylist, was contacted by a Maples associate about doing their hair and makeup for the day. When presented with Kelly’s fee schedule, Maples (via her people) objected, saying the amount was too much. After further back-and-forth (resulting in a Kelly proposal of $350 total), Maples’ assistant suggested that perhaps Kelly might be willing to provide services for free — in exchange for “exposure”, including some social media shout-outs.
After finding her voice again, Kelly declined.
This is not unfamiliar territory for creative people. Musicians, for example, run up against the argument, “well, could you play for an evening at our tavern? We don’t have any money to pay you, but the exposure would be great! Lots of people come to our place!”, etc etc.
Partly this has to do with the tavern owner (or whomever) not understanding how much actual work, preparation, etc. go into such endeavors. Yes, there’s a certain skill set and a certain amount of talent and work that go into things like this. Creative and artistic services like dinner music, ice sculptures, interior decorating, dance instruction … while they don’t look anything like plumbing, electrical work, car repair, or various other activities … still do constitute compensable skills.
Again, we creative types are not unfamiliar with the need to educate people about this.
This, though? This is something else.
This is yet another example of entitled people who understand no one else but themselves.
“There are people who make far less than they do who pay full price,” [Kelly] said. “People on staff – the incoming White House and the outgoing one – pay full price. It seemed like they were trying to see how much they could get for free based on their names.”
Because that’s their idea of fair compensation. These people will never need to worry about where their next meal is coming from … they will never need to decide between taking their kid to the doctor and paying the rent … and their every capricious whim will be catered to instantly, for the rest of their natural lives. Their idea of recompense is exposure on social media. Their idea of currency is their surname.
Well, these apples didn’t fall far from the orange tree.
But further, it’s an example (one which will become very common in the next … well, however long the Human Conflict Of Interest serves as President) of entitled people lording it over the rest of us. Because they don’t know any experience other than seeing themselves as above the rest of us slobs.
But after The Washington Post contacted the PR representative, Kelly received ominous messages from [Maples’ associate], who had first put her in touch with Maples’s camp. “You are messing with the president of the United States,” the Maples contact wrote her, adding that Maples was worried about her financial situation with Tiffany out of college, ending child-support payments from the president-elect. “She is used to a certain lifestyle and you don’t understand that.”
In my little fantasy world, I would have an instant and forceful retort for Ms. Maples’ associate. In the real world, I hope I would have either the guts to actually speak it, or the sense to keep my yap shut until I could get to a friendly newspaper reporter and tell my story, which is what Ms. Kelly wisely did.
Marla Maples is used to a certain lifestyle and I don’t understand that?
“Damn right I don’t. And I hope I never do. Not if it makes me look and sound like that.”
And support the people who actually do a little work around here.
[Ed. note: Three days until we inaugurate a man … accompanied by the rest of his soon-to-be First Family … who has never in his life known want. Who is supported by craven, corrupt, similarly entitled (Congress)people who (por ejamplo) wish to take away health insurance from people who do know want, every damn day of their lives. Who, nonetheless, is supposed to be seen as the president of all the people of the United States.
[Hell of a role model.]
Well, that didn’t take long at all.
Yesterday I posted in this space about the absurd travesty of a press conference conducted by the Short-Fingered Vulgarian, at his Golden Palace of Horrors, surrounded not only by the press but by a throng of loyal supporters.
Turns out? Paid supporters.
Dutifully, the online political website “Politico” picked up on this. In their article chronicling this ridiculous event, they wrote that everything has changed, and yet nothing has – recalling Orange Muppet Hitler’s event, in that same room, utilizing many people paid to portray cheering supporters.
Well, they got it half right. Everything has changed. He’s the President-Elect, not just some hack third-rate celebrity who once had a TV show. Theoretically, there is the expectation of behavior that Americans have come to characterize as “presidential” – y’know – dignity, restraint and compassion, yeah?
Well, heck with that, apparently.
But we don’t have to help in this transition from old-school “presidentialness” to whatever in the HELL this new reality is.
Buried deep in the sputtering end of the Politico article:
With nine days to go until Inauguration Day, the spectacle may be one of the last ones that unfolds on Trump’s home turf in midtown Manhattan, between the Gucci and Bulgari stores. Next up, he will be occupying the people’s home, and confront the press in less familiar, more intimidating surroundings.
Hey Politico — which the estimable writer Charlie Pierce has long called “Tiger Beat on the Potomac”, and not for nothing — this is what it sounds like when you report this crap like it’s normal.
Guess what? It ain’t.
“Oh, once he gets to the White House it’ll be okay,” this Politico garbage seems to me to imply.
Oh no no no. No. NO IT WON’T.
Once he gets to the White House it’ll be TOO FREAKING LATE.
Won’t be too long before those paid supporters start showing up wearing brown shirts.
NOTE TO JOURNALISTS OF THE WORLD (and those who pretend to be)
THIS IS NOT NORMAL.
THIS IS NOT GOOD.
STOP REPORTING THIS LIKE IT IS NORMAL OR GOOD
IT IS NEITHER