LIFESTYLES OF THE RICH AND FAMOUS: THE GLITZ AND THE DITZ

Celebrities are well…celebrated for their popularity and their talents, but more often than not, people have to see both sides of the coin to realize nobody should be put in the pedestal. Glittering lights of success may not often reflect the inner life of the celebrities themselves. Although we are called not to judge, we must be careful to select role models especially for the younger generations. Here is a short list of the big names in the limelight, with some tongue in cheek. This is not to bash them at all, but to show both the good and the bad.

Steve Jobs

Glitz: the guy who co-created the famous Apple phone and Mac laptop, worked on Pixar, and worked on numerous technological projects like the NeXT computer, which is designed for use in higher academic and business industry purposes.

Ditz: The supposedly last letter of his that circulated around the web and social media was questionable and a number of sources say it wasn’t really Jobs who wrote it. A little background research revealed that Jobs was interviewed by his official biographer before he died. He mentioned that he regretted “wasn’t always there for (wife and children)”. Therefore, Jobs wanted the biography written so his family could know more about him. While this is not earth shattering at all, it goes to show how easily people can forget about their own family, to put careers first. May we never forget to spend time with our loved ones.

Michael Jackson

Glitz: one of the best known musicians of the 20th century, known for his perfectionism and drastic physical transformation (which was according to him, mainly caused by vitiligo). He was a dancer, a songwriter, a singer, an actor, choreographer, among other things. Called the King of Pop, he amassed a multi-million dollar house and a ranch complete with rides.

Ditz: Jackson was not the best financial guru, as his ranch and some of his albums crashed under renovations, maintenance and construction, as well as unpaid loans. His infamous child molestation charges were never actually successful but people came to view him as a paedophile. Jackson was also, in some ways, very emotional in that he had a open hate relationship with the media. He died supposedly because of drug overdose. With regards to his skin, Jackson had defended it as a result of stage lighting, make-up, and his vilitigo.

Whitney Houston

Glitz: if Michael Jackson was the King of Pop, then Whitney Houston was the princess of ballads, way back when singing your heart out in high tones and deep timbres was the trend. She started out as a singer in church, then gradually worked her way up to stardom, garnering awards from songs such as I Will Always Love You (The Bodyguard) and I Have Nothing. Guinness Book of Records named her the most awarded female singer. Houston also tried out modelling and acting gigs.

Ditz: It wasn’t all glamour for Houston. She later on got hooked on drugs, had a poor marital relationship with her husband who also used drugs. It was rumoured that he was the one who pushed her to do the same. There were concerts when the audience could tell that she was obviously drunk, slurring and blurring the lyrics, and even forgetting them altogether. It was a tragic day when the media reported her death. Autopsy reports showed two findings: systemic levels of drugs used to treat allergies, muscle spasms and anxiety, as well as cannabis; and, heart diseases among other long term effects of cocaine use. She was found to have been drowned. Her only child, Bobbi Kristina Brown also died a few years later. She was initially found face down on a bathtub, was rushed to the hospital to be given medical care but without any chance of recovery. She passed away in the tender age of 22.

Manny Pacquiao

Glitz: He was the Pacman of the boxing ring. Growing up poor, he transferred from a province to work in Manila, the Philippines’ capital. There he went on to work for his family, and was later on seen practicing on boxing. His old trainer has often quoted to saying Manny was very diligent in practice, so it was not long before he was knocking down one opponent and another. His big chance came in the international boxing ring where he fought and defeated giants such as Antonio Barrera, Manual Marquez and world champion Eric Morales. Forbes named him as top two of the most paid athletes in 2015, while Asian Society gave him the award for being the best game changer of the year 2015.

Ditz: While his professional life flourished, his marital side slowly deteriorated. There were numerous accounts of his infidelity. Pacquiao also focused on gambling and drinking until about five years ago when he claimed to have heard the voice of God. Repenting of all his ways, and putting his faith on Jesus Christ, Pacquaio turned his back from his old life of girls, booze and gambling. Everyone had remarked on his change, least happiest of them all is his wife, Jinky. In an HBO reality series, she said, “Our lives were like a roller coaster ride. Before, it’s something like half-half, 50-50 trust, doubt and trust. Now, it’s very different than before. It’s full of trust. Now we have a happy life together.” 

Donald Trump

Glitz: Trump is a businessman, an aspiring politician as well as a celebrity on TV. His numerous exploits in the industry have resulted in hotels, skyscrapers, a imitation of the Taj Mahal (which he later on sold due to debts), ownership of a sports team, a part in beauty pageants and golf courses. He has even trademarked his own name. To date, he has filed his net worth to around $125 million.

Ditz: Bankruptcy has also affected Trump, resulting in selling out a few of his assets and parts of his name franchise. It also did not bode well with some business owners who were dismayed with his immigration policy platforms as a presidential candidate. Besides these, Trump’s three marriages were all documented by the media. Apparently, his passions often overcome his familial responsibilities. In an interview, Trump said, “I just know it’s very hard for them [his former wives] to compete because I do love what I do. I really love it.” Finally in some unofficial biographies, he has been linked to the Italian American mafia crowd.

Miley Cyrus

Glitz: Miley Cyrus (born Destiny Hope Cyrus) is a songwriter, actress and singer. She rose to fame with her role in Hannah Montana, a Disney TV show. Most of her musical works were a success, and it was during this time that one of her albums reached quadruple-platinum (2 million or more but less than 10 million units) status. She started to experiment with her music in the album Bangerz. Miley has since then landed on various acting roles and many more in the music side. She garnered top status on listings by MTV, US Billboard Hot 100 and Forbes as the top 13 of the 100 most famous celebrities. As for other interests, she has reached out to several philanthropic ventures for AIDS awareness and treatment, housing projects, music for peace, among other things.

Ditz: Miley has been open with her use of illegal drug cannabis, one incident of which is mentioned in one of W’s interview of her in 2014. Her sexually open antics produced negative reactions in the Bangerz album, since this lewd behavior was such a far cry from the conservative, preppy girl she portrayed in Hannah Montana.