Wednesday, May 24, 2006


I heard on the radio this morning that about as many people voted for the next American Idol as voted for President in the last election.

When I heard this, I nearly crashed my car.

Seriously? Seriously America?

Patriots died to bring forth on this continent blah blah blah and we're more willing make our voices heard for a tv show? One on Fox, no less?

It makes me want to punch someone in the face.

Let me say up-front that I'm not an Idol watcher. (Although there is a promo for Idol in which Simon whatshizname says "There's only one American Idol" and I'm all, "Wait a minute, haven't there been like, five?" So now that bugs the shit out of me.) Because I don't care who the next American Idol is, maybe this is sticking in my craw more than if I was strongly rooting for [that guy] over [some girl] or vice versa.

Mid-term elections are coming up. Historically, voter turnout is lower in non-Presidential years, so I keep thinking that fewer people are going to exercise their civic duty in November than voted for something that doesn't matter at all.

The next American Idol won't cut your taxes or provide nutritional assistance or run the Centers for Disease Control. He or she won't negotiate treaties or control the Strategic Petroleum Reserve or appoint Supreme Court Justices. (You: Hey, the next American Idol also won't fund a war or get a hummer in the Oval or tap your phone without a warrant, Dumbshit. Me: Duly noted.)

I'm desperately clinging to the following two thoughts:
1) No American Idol voters need to register or be of legal voting age.

You just need a phone and an opinion, right? So here's hoping there are millions of tweeners out there faithfully using their parentally funded cell phones to text message their votes to Fox. (Can you text your vote? My ignorance on these matters is showing.)

2) You can vote more than once.

Here's also hoping those tweeners and other Idol voters keep frantically dialing over and over again to ensure that their favorite is the winner. I'm pretty sure NPR was referring to the number of votes, and comparing that to the number of Election Day voters, because it must be impossible to determine how many unique Idol voters there are. (Do you have to pay for the call? Please please please tell me you don't have to pay for the call. Because the thought of more people paying to vote for a pop singer than showing up at the polls for free might just send me over the edge.)

Or there's this thought: maybe NPR got it wrong. It was just their "odd/funny/happy tidbit" right before hitting you with the day's news, so maybe they didn't really mean it.

Right? Right?


Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah said...

Our priorities are completely out of whack around here. "American Idol" must be the new heroin. It is on ALL OF THE TIME and almost everybody seems to give a crap. I have friends that I haven't talked to in years e-mailing me about who I want to win.

I don't even have an answer for that.

Kemp said...

Hallelujah! Can I get an Amen???

Love the post... wish I would have written it.

Sarah is right... it's the new heroin. To get this worked-up over a TV show is pathetic and sad.

Lumpyheadsmom said...

Kemp: "To get this worked-up over a TV show is pathetic and sad."

Yes, yes. Unless the show is a sporting event. Then it's appropriate and necessary to get all anxious and yell at the television and discuss and dissect the next day. Right? Right?

Bump said...

C'mon--sports are real life! They matter . . . uh . . . so it's okay that we get so worked up [he said sheepishly while watching the Sox/Yanks game].

My nomination for the award of Greatest Thing Ever (Non-Offspring Category) has to be the regular article in the Style section of the Washington Post, "We Watch So You Don't Have To," which allows me to stay hip to the (apparently culturally significant) goings-on of "Idol" . . . WITHOUT HAVING TO SIT THROUGH THAT AWFUL MUSIC!!! OR LISTEN TO SIMON/PAULA/RANDY!!!!! Woooohooooo!

Do other cities' newspapers have this, or is it just DC?

Mom at Work said...

You can vote more than once, and they only count aggregate votes, not individual voters.

Still. Ugh.

nonlineargirl said...

I have a lot of friends who watch Idol, but other than that one season I watched with my pregnant friend, I don't. (Of course, I waste time in PLENTY of other ways...) It is depressing to me that people don't have the ethusiasm for politics that they have for tv.

Kemp said...

"Unless the show is a sporting event."

Well of course... that goes without saying...

Vicky said...

I understand your frustration, but I sometimes watch the show. I could tell you after watching it and laughing while watching it I feel realaxed and in a better mood. Like watching a standup comedy.

Maybe I am missing the all point of the show, but for me is more an entertament that anything else. Is like watching the competition for "Miss Universe".

And about the votes for the politics candidates you can be sure that when they allow me to give my vote by phone or online, I WILL.
I quess I am a desapointment to your eyes, but as frustrated you are filling with the "American Idol" show, I feel the same way with politics.

Becky said...

How long have you lived here? And this surprises you? Really? REALLY?