We have blurred the line between entertainer and expert. We've made infotainment very lucrative and it's literally killing people.
I’ve been around, and seen some stuff. Lots in fact. Some people even seem to want my opinion. Sometimes even my advice.
Frankly, it scares the hell out of me.
As my social media presence grew and continues to grow, I get asked a lot of questions about all sorts of stuff. And there are certain things that I might even be qualified to answer. I’m trained in baking in pastry arts, and graduated from one of the most prestigious culinary schools in the country. So if you have a question about anything from bread baking to chocolate I can give you an educated and accurate answer.
Since there doesn’t happen to be any formal education in stripping, I would have to consider myself a subject matter expert on the topic given my personal experience. My knowledge in that area is vast. Everything from how to keep your knees from sticking to the stage, to the unspoken but very serious dancer etiquette that exists in the strip club.
And if you need advice on the best way to avoid razor burn on your delicate parts, I am definitely your girl.
When I write or speak about any topic, I try to be very careful about how I frame my advice or opinions because I am very aware I could be wrong.
Don’t tell my husband I said that.
What I lack in education, I make up for with stories. Stories that might add some insight to other peoples’ lives, and hopefully good for a laugh or two. In some cases, my silly anecdotes might offer a tiny bit of insight into the human experience. That’s what I have to offer. I understand that. To take my advice beyond that, even if seemingly well researched would not be wise.
But what scares me is how seriously many people take the words of people on social media, TV, or ahem….podcasts. Deadly seriously. What’s even scarier is that they seem to get let off the hook for their poorly-educated advice by framing it as just asking questions. But they aren’t just asking innocent questions with a sincere intention of gaining knowledge. They’ve already decided on the answers they will accept.
Asking questions is great. Imperative even. Hell, I even wrote a book about questioning everything. The problem happens when you refuse to accept the answers when they don’t jive with your stubbornly held opinion. It is very literally the opposite of the scientific method. You know, the way we find actual answers to things.
A pretty face or a smart-sounding anecdote is not a suitable replacement for educated opinions and advice.
As if searing good looks and rock-hard abs…wait where was I?
I’m not an expert on most things, but I do know how easy it is to thwart even a smart person’s critical thinking skills.
It was literally my whole job as a stripper.
Millions of people see someone on TV or in a movie recommend some folk remedy, and decide it’s a good idea to cram a jade egg where the sun doesn’t shine. As if, that person’s advice is now somehow on par with their doctor’s.
The words “information and entertainment” have for some reason been joined in unholy matrimony that is very literally killing people. Or at the very least radicalizing them. Infotainment shouldn’t even be a thing.
And yet, we’ve made it very lucrative.
We no longer look at the pretty faces or intelligent-sounding people on our screens as a harmless form of entertainment, but rather as uncensored truth bringers. We’ve allowed profit-driven algorithms to convince us that facts aren’t hard truth, but malleable to our own beliefs. That facts aren’t facts unless they align with what we already think.
We used to be able to recognize when our entertainers were fooling us for our own enjoyment. Ultimately we pay them to lie to us. But we’ve bought into the show. We’ve been dazzled by smart talk and pretty faces and let them convince us that we are our own researchers, when in fact we’re just the marks.