I have to admit to a fascination with celebrity gossip magazines. Not all the A-list Hollywood-style gossip, though. I love the British fascination with the damaged nobodies who debase themselves on "reality" TV shows. I don't read the magazines, but I do love to scan the headlines on the newsagent's shelves each week to see the extent to which people will humiliate themselves for their five-minutes of "fame".
My current fascination is what appears to be the deal that the magazines have with these zelebrities (z-list celebrities: a name I've just made up because I can't bring myself to call them celebrities). Anyway, it's a Faustian deal that seems to involve the magazine, and the zelebrity and their PR person:
PR Whore: Hello Heat magazine, would you like an exclusive with Chanelle?
Heat Hack: Well, only if it's something about her and Ziggy.
PR Whore: Not really, you see Chanelle's got a great voice and she's trying to launch a pop career.
Heat Hack: (Yawn) Yeah, yeah. Has she shagged Ziggy yet?
PR Whore: I think that's personal and between them. So, about Chanelle's singing.
Heat Hack: Couldn't give a toss mate. Are Chanelle and Ziggy a couple, 'cause to be honest nobody cares a damn about them if they're not.
PR Whore: Well, they are still in contact. He's very supportive of her singing career...
Heat Hack: By "supportive" do you mean he's shagging her?
PR Whore: Look, do you want an exclusive with Chanelle or not, because I'm phoning Chat Magazine next?
Heat Hack: Let me put this to you straight. No-one gives a flying f*ck about Chanelle. Or Ziggy for that matter. We're only interested *this week* if they're shagging. Next week we'll be interested if they split up, on the condition that they get back together again the following week then split up for good the week after. The following week we'll be interested in her anorexia hell brought about by the split and the following week we might be interested in her depression because of the split, but only if she's turned to booze and drugs. The following week we'll have completely lost interest altogether. We'll only be interested thereafter if she puts on 10 stone then loses it again in an attempt to win Ziggy back, and we'll do a piece about how her diet lost her 5 dress sizes. Apart from that, and outwith the connection with Ziggy we have absolutely no interest in Chanelle whatsoever. Got it?
PR Whore: Okay, how about a topless centre spread of Chanelle and Ziggy snogging each other, and an interview in which both of them coyly deny having shagged each other?
And ladies and gentlemen, I think you'll find that's how this week's Heat Magazine came about.