Martha Stewart: Proof that the America is gilded and dumb
by Michael Maiello
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, a company with two television shows, two magazines, a slew of products to sell at Kmart ($750 million worth in 1998) and 27 freaking books, went public two weeks ago and the stock, which started at $18 per share peaked at $52 and then settled around $36. Martha Stewart owns $1.2 billion worth of stock. All of this makes me regret not paying careful attention to the macaroni art and glue on sparkle rituals of elementary school.
The stock market, by the way, is stupid. The investors are also stupid. I thought it was all about high tech, but apparently people want to invest in gilded apricots. Fine. But it's stupid.
Martha Stewart is strange. She's a freak. She's not healthy. She mistreats her daughter, drove her ex away (even with her fame and fortune, I'll bet he's glad to be a with a woman who doesn't want to decorate the house with pine cones and dried corn...)
I don't know what Martha Stewart's real name is, but it's not Martha Stewart. The woman isn't even a WASP. She's Polish! It's fine that she's not a WASP, I'm not one either, but I don't pretend to be an SUV driving Protestant. But that's not all that's wrong here...
What the hell is with the word Omnimedia? Omnipotent -- all powerful. Omniscient -- all knowing. Omnimedia -- All media?!? Is Martha Stewart, with her wholesome arts and crafts, trying to go where not even Rupert Murdoch has gone before? I don't want to see her on all the media, and I never want to see her interviewed by Charlie Rose, or hosting Saturday Night Live, and I don't even want to see her likeness on The Simpsons, even though they'd crucify her good. On the other hand, I wouldn't mind seeing her head in a jar on Futurama -- she couldn't do crafts without arms and legs.
Now, why am I getting so worked up? Why am I writing insulting things about creepy Martha. I have to calm down and apologize. It's just that... It's just that...
Martha Stewart's success is another victory for right wing social thought -- it's some sort of low I.Q. reaction from the American public at large which says, "We should live in a simpler time" and likes the idea of a woman spending her time on home-based crafts rather than office work. I bet that most of her female fans are housewives, or women who hate their jobs and would rather be housewives. Or men who wish their women would be better housewives (but still bring home some dough, of course...)
Martha Stewart is a blow against all things subversive. Look, I'll just come out and say it -- if you find yourself gilding fruits and flowers for decorative use you have too much time on your hands and seriously need to consider an interest in marijuana or alcohol. If you're watching Martha Stewart and are not so screwed up on mind alerting substances that you laugh through your nose at everything she says -- well, then you need to seek out some help.
I think it's good to have crafting skills, if you enjoy that sort of thing. I guess I really don't. I can fix basic things that break, can't do too much more. Of course, Martha and her upper class ilk don't have to fix anything, they can hire people when things break. And they should, because then they're pumping their money into the economy. Seriously, if rich people learn crafts that's the end of trickle down economics. Or maybe Martha is serving a role in wealth distribution -- if people learn their crafts from her, well... you know how much a locksmith charges to fix an over-gilded doorknob?
Michael Maiello wrote this late late late at night while working at Forbes Magazine. Somewhere after "I think I'll write a column" discretion went the way of the gilded wind.