Updated: Sep 6, 2021
Do you remember the movie Notting Hill? Sure, you do. Towards the end of the movie Julia Roberts who plays a famous actress stands in front of a “regular” guy played by Hugh Grant and says, “The fame thing isn’t really real”. The story is romantic but shows a difficult side of the fame thing.
I had the honour of working with the best Slovenian winter sport stars in their good and bad moments. They all have something in common.
They all are regular people just like you and me. So, the fame thing isn’t really real?! No, It’s fiction. They stand out from the crowd, because they achieved the impossible. Impossible for us, the regular ones. Their determination is stronger, their work is more focused, they have a fair amount of talent and perfect discipline for achieving their goal. When they achieve their goal, the fame thing pops out. When you ask one of them if you can take a picture with them, they do it. But not just with you. They do it every day, where ever they go. Can you imagine going to the petrol station for some gas. The guy doing the same next to your car comes to you and asks you for a selfie or an autograph. OK, you do it. When you go to the cashiers, they know who you are and here we go again. Not to mention the three kids you didn’t see in the car in front of you. Yes, they are waiting by your car, when you have paid for the gas. Then you go in the City for a coffee with a friend. You park your car, step out and walk to the cafe for 300 metres. Everybody is looking at you, the courageous ones of course ask you for a selfie or an autograph, the ones that are not, just take a picture from a safe distance. Then you sit with your friend in the cafe (It’s your first time in this bar), the waiter before taking your order ask if the staff can take a photo with you, just to put on the wall, and maybe on social media. You get your coffee (although you would need something stronger), and you see that everybody is looking what you ordered, they are pointing at you, they listen what you talk about, the courageous ones come to the table and ask you for a selfie or an autograph, the ones that are not, just secretly take a picture of you. OK, you paid, you go back to your car (the same drill on the way back). You drive away and stop at the traffic light. From the cars on your left and right everybody is waiving at you. You wave back. You go to the supermarket to get something to eat (yes, same thing again). But then something strange happens. You come home, and nobody wants a selfie or an autograph, nobody points at you. Your wife/husband tells you it’s your turn to do the dishes and take out the trash. You do it. You do the regular things before bed time and go to sleep.
So, do we have an answer? Was Julia, right? The fame thing isn’t really real. It is fiction. But only for the one with the fame thing. For the rest of us it’s a way of showing our respect to the ones that stand out from the regular ones. We want to meet them, ask them all sorts of questions, take a picture with them, if they give us an autograph, we will show it to our friends. And so, we will also have a scent of the fame thing.
At least with our friends.