The moment I saw him smile
I knew he was just my style
My only regret is we’ve never met
Though I dream of him all the while
But he doesn’t know I exist
No matter how I may persist
So it’s clear to see there’s no hope for me…
From the song "The Boy Next Door," from the classic Judy Garland movie Meet Me in St. Louis.
So, last week my not so well kept secret came out. I have a crush on actor Richard Armitage. He’s not my first celebrity crush, and unless I marry someone 100% perfect, I’m sure he will not be my last. As I know I’m not alone in this, I thought it might be fun to explore how we develop celebrity crushes and when we may be in danger of taking them too far.
Everyone has had, has or will have at least one celebrity crush. Everyone! Even celebrities have celebrity crushes. So you may take comfort in the fact that you are not only not alone in your crush, but in very good company.
I suspect the tendency to develop celebrity crushes comes from the same place as all other attractions and crushes – our caveman genes. You know the genes that tell us to find a mate with the best DNA and procreate with them? Scientists say these genes make us look for mates who are attractive, symmetrical, and healthy; and who fits these criteria better than most celebrities? And with the advent of cameras, TV and movies, and computers, we see celebrities more often, and learn about them more quickly, than the potential mates who are living near us. For this reason, it is quite easy for our caveman genes to take over our reason and for us to develop serious attractions to, almost obsessions with, celebrities. And for women, there is one more caveman-caused attraction to celebs; we are looking for mates who can provide us with security, and celebs would seem to be able to best provide that, at least financially.
When we look at it from this prospective, being attracted to a celebrity is not unhealthy; on the contrary it is natural and normal. And wanting to learn more about him to see if he meets one’s criteria for the perfect mate is therefore also natural. I would even argue that there are certain pros that come from having a crush on a celebrity, (or a crush on anyone for that matter). I shall give you an example from my own experience.
I need to lose a few pounds, (probably more like a few stone), and though I was committed before to get those excess pounds off this year, my newest attraction has motivated me to work harder at it so it comes off sooner. You see, I realized that if I want my Mr. D to have a rockin’ body, then he’d probably be looking for a Mrs. D who wasn’t too squishy in the middle.
In general I think when we are attracted to or have a crush on someone new, we tend to want to better ourselves in some manner to attract that person to us. And although this may not be the best reason to want to make changes about ourselves - that we should want to make changes for ourselves, not for others - the motivation to better ourselves is, I think, always a good thing.
But as I said before, sometimes when we are strongly attracted to someone, celebrity or not, our caveman genes can overtake our reason, and make us forget the realities of our situations, or for the need for mutual attraction. When this happens we are in danger of losing our common sense, and embarrassing ourselves, at the very least; or worse, becoming stalkers. It can happen to anyone, even those of us with our feet firmly planted in reality, (although I suspect those who are more imaginative, less skeptical and pessimistic have the higher risks of losing their wits).
When I was younger, I remember watching an old Wonderful World of Disney show in which Walt Disney discussed the concept of the ‘plausible impossible.’ It’s basically anything that your logical brain knows couldn’t happen in real life, but can plausibly happen if certain laws of the universe were tweaked a bit. (J.K. Rowling is queen of making impossible concepts plausible). It is the suspension of disbelief. Walt was referring more to things like dancing spoons and animals wearing clothing, but our celebrity crushes could be seen as plausible impossibles. Logically, we know that the likelihood of someone famous falling in love with us is less likely than our chances winning the lottery; but if we see it as plausible, then it’s only one step further to thinking that it’s possible, and then, if we’ve really lost it, probable.
I’ve had many celebrity crushes through the years. When I was young and naïve I thought I would surely marry one of them one day. As I got older, and met a few of my crushes in person, I realized that they were not always who they appeared to be in public. Sometimes they are as they appear, except for one major blocker, such as they are married, dating, or gay, (although those fans that don’t take the sanctity of vows and commitments as seriously as I do might not find those things such an issue). Usually this keeps me safe from being in danger of losing my wits when I have a celeb crush. At least I hope it does. :)
Tomorrow, I thought it would be fun to talk about what behavior is inappropriate when dealing with your celebrity crush, or any crush for that matter, or even celebs in general.
I just adore him
So I can’t ignore him
The boy next door