The celebrity sat in his extravagant backyard, next to the empty swimming pool that no one ever used, and flipped through a magazine he subscribed to but didn’t actually read. One of his servants approached with a glass of protein-infused carrot-pomegranate juice on a silver tray, and a cellphone. The celebrity’s agent as on the line.
“Hug it out, bitch,” the celebrity said. The celebrity thought that cleverness was simply a matter of repeating things that other people recognized from television.
“You the man,” the celebrity’s agent said. The celebrity’s agent didn’t give a fuck about being clever. That was the studio’s job.
The celebrity’s agent told him some of the work that he may or may not be offered in the following week. The celebrity squinted his eyes in the bright, Hollywood sun and nodded his head. His agent asked if they were still on for a sushi lunch later that afternoon to discuss one of his lucrative Japanese endorsement deals. The celebrity shrugged because the celebrity had not been charged with keeping track of his own schedule in over 15 years. “Hello?” the agent said. The celebrity remembered that you can’t hear shrugs over the phone.
In the climate controlled mansion, the cool marble tiles felt wonderful on the spa-scrubbed balls of the celebrity’s feet. He stretched out on a butter leather sofa and turned on one of the house’s 12 plasma televisions that someone had come and installed one afternoon three years before, and to this day could not remember for the life of him if he’d actually requested or paid for them. It was, the celebrity knew, a strange world “we” lived in.
A man on the television who the celebrity vaguely remembered having done cocaine with at a dinner party was talking about the Presidential election. The celebrity hadn’t been following the election very closely because he was not a civilian and did not bother himself in civilian affairs. But now that he watched this man whose prematurely white hair brought out his shocking blue eyes, this man who the celebrity remembered giving a blowjob to in the second floor bathroom at a dinner party high on cocaine, the celebrity realized that he did have opinions about what was happening in the world. He went to fucking Africa, after all, didn’t he? For three days?! Africa?! The celebrity was engaged with the plight of humanity. He had not gotten a blowjob in return from this man on the television.
The celebrity went into the study, which had all the furniture a study is supposed to have. There was a desk, and a chair, and two plasma screen TVs on the wall. The celebrity knew that there might come a time when a guest in one of his 11 bedrooms wanted to use a desk, so he kept the room as it was rather than turning it into a secondary gym. See? He cared about people. He made do with only one gym! And also Africa! He went there! For three days! The celebrity sat in the chair at the desk and turned on a video camera. Perhaps it was time to use his influence as an international figure to do his part to raise awareness about the issues of the day.
The red light glowed steadily. The celebrity stared into the lens, as he had stared into so many lenses in his career. But he didn’t say a word. Suddenly the celebrity realized that perhaps he did not have anything valid to add to the national dialogue. That perhaps having starred in a movie about a computer-controlled nuclear submarine going rogue in the Black Sea and only one man (him!) being able to stop it didn’t actually give him the gravitas of actual foreign policy experience. It may even be, the celebrity quietly acknowledged to himself, that the world was too cluttered with loud, uninformed messages that not only did not help but might even hinder such an important and valuable and complexly nuanced process as the governance of the free world. The celebrity said nothing and turned off the video camera. There would be no political endorsement on YouTube from him today.
Back out by the pool, the celebrity farted and did a bunch of heroin.