Being Popular Sucks
The worst thing that can happen to anything is to become popular.(When I say anything I refer to activities or interests, and not individual people).
Why is becoming popular bad? If I’m interested in something and more people become interested in it, that means more money and involvement which will improve the availability of that interest for me to indulge in.
No doubt something becoming popular means that it receives greater coverage and attention which allows that ‘thing’ to grow, but is that a good thing?
Car enthusiasts lament the decline in the pleasurable experience of driving cars. This while we have the fastest, most advanced, sophisticated, and fancy cars ever made and a plethora of choices. Would you like to drive the Mercedes, Ferrari, Mclaren, Porsche, etc? The cars are all great performers and amazing machines that will blow your socks off, and yet are probably not as enjoyable to drive as a 2001-06 BMW M3(E46).
Another example, music. There’s more radio stations and music outlets today than there was 30 years ago. Producing an album is easier than ever and yet few would say that the music of today even comes close to being as good as the wares of Rush, Queen, or Led Zeppelin. Sticking with entertainment the same could be said for actors and movies.
Travel is very applicable. Once the cool factor of a new location gets out, its only a matter of time before it loses that magic and just becomes another common tourist destination. While the most typical tourists destinations may be places like Paris, Rome, and Venice, places like Prague, which was considered magical a decade ago is now just another place.
The obsession with bacon is even an example. Bacon has become cool for some reason and with that a bacon flavored version of everything you’ve ever eaten for no reason other than to capitalize on the bacon schtick. Bacon is indeed a good food, but it’s a great addition to breakfast not a holy relic. Americans have enjoyed bacon for some time, but now like this, this is just marketing fueled popularity.
Sports are also the same. There is wall to wall coverage of every major sport in the United States and yet even though these sports are more popular than ever, people lament the fact that the games just aren’t played the way they used to be. All the gimmickry and in your face advertising is off putting.
Football is not popular because it’s inherently popular but because millions of people have played it at some point. The same can be said with baseball and even now with soccer rising in popularity in America we can look at the statistics and say its because of the rising number of people playing soccer.
People doing the things they enjoy is not popularity, its grassroots involvement. Someone who played football watches and follows football because they are keen on it. Someone who watches football, or Nascar from a few years ago, because its popular is a fair weather fan and ruins it for those truly interested.
The product gets marketed to these fair weather fans because they have additional untapped money, but then in order to make them happy and draw them in more easily the product gets watered down. Thus we go from exciting and fun mid-size BMW’s to impressively numbered but bland, and boring “performance” cars that require no more effort or ability to drive than a base model Toyota Camry, but is still as cool because its a Ferrari or Mercedes.
The worst thing that can happen to anything is to become popular. When people hear that something is cool they want in, they want to be part of the club, but it comes at a price. That price is the ruin of the thing they want to be a part of. Though the truth is that they really don’t want to be a part of it specifically, but rather want to be a part of anything. When someone’s life is empty they hop from distraction to distraction, continually “finding themselves”, like pathetic college students who can’t grow up. In doing so they ruin the hobbies of the rest of us, they boost them up, then walk away leaving the stool with one less leg to stand on than it thought it had.
It is essentially, a bubble. Just like how housing prices were inflated to the point of being unsustainable, popularity rising in something due to a passing interest is only going to have bad results when that thing has to come down if it has sold out in order to capitalize on its short term popularity.
Posted on February 12, 2014, in Problems to Ponder, The Life of Man and tagged bacon, bmw, cars, empty life, fair weather fans, fulfullment, hobbies, interests, led zeppelin, life, meaning, movies, music, NASCAR, paris, popular, prague, queen, radio, rome, rush, sports, travel, venice. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.