COMMENT | “In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes,” said intellectual prankster/artist Andy Warhol in 1968.
As with any pithy quip, Warhol was both right and wrong.
Right because the music industry has had many one-hit wonders. So yesterday, if you are still horsing around in Gangnam at parties.
And wrong because the Kardashians are still famous for being famous, ad nauseum.
A few days ago, Mohd Nazifuddin Najib had his 15 minutes or so in the public eye with his trip to Taiwan.
Ha! The uproar! People, who had probably railed against the oppressive, restrictive moral police of the previous government, became insufferable, supercilious self-righteous moral guardians themselves.
Wah, drinking wine, haram. Shame, shame, daddy facing trial, and unfilial you are gallivanting in Taiwan. People donating money for daddy’s bail, and you are not contributing.
Such sanctimonious crap.
Admit it. The first motivation that drew you to the story and the pictures of his tryst with the Taiwanese actress Celia Chang was basic, base prurience, a titillation, peeping through a keyhole and catching people in unguarded moments.
Don’t justify it with a holier-than-thou attitude, perched on a high horse.
Get real. Put yourself in his shoes and have some empathy, if not sympathy.
If you were a young man and your options were spending a day and half-a-night (according to Chang) with an attractive woman drinking grape juice, having the kinks in your muscles loosened with a relaxing massage, or moping at home, singing the chorus to Harry Belafonte’s hit: “Woe is me, shame and scandal in the family,” which would you choose?
It really was nobody’s business, and has now left the young man psychologically scarred, paranoid about lifts.
Since his financials seem exempt from MACC’s cold storage, I trust he will help his siblings who have been crying poorhouse and moaning about being unable to pay their bills.
It was nice of the government allowing them to round up half of daddy’s bail before freezing their accounts.
Otherwise, it would have to be up to daddy’s tabung (fund), and they were already weighed down by the prospect of the couple of million or so required for legal fees. The lawyers have denied the amount.
It would be difficult to collect from a man whose accounts have been frozen, but surely not pro bono?
And it would be a major aberration in natural law if distinguished legal counsel came cheap.
Nazifuddin must be glad that the attention of the scandal hounds is now drawn to a Lebanese jeweller.
I have commented about the blithe storage for months of jewellery that is claimed to belong to jewellers.
My friend’s wife showed me a woman’s perspective. Seeing her husband and me looking at the listing and photographs of the jewellery seized in the Pavilion residence, her first response was: “14 tiaras? Why would she need 14 tiaras? How many occasions does she have to wear a tiara? Earrings, necklaces, rings? Yes, but tiaras?”
I am a guy. Married for 21 years. What do I know about women? I just thought it was like collecting stamps or Hello Kitty kitsch.
The Lady of Permata is a long-standing customer, says Lebanese Royalty, the jeweller who has filed a claim for 44 pieces of jewellery.
The value of the pieces ranges from US$124,000 to US$925,000.
Then, think of Najib getting soppy and sentimental about the Umno stalwart donating her favourite gold bangle to his legal defence fund - I am touched by its sick, black humour.
THOR KAH HOONG is a veteran journalist.