Sentiments Of A Starlet


[NOTE: I wrote this on 2009 at the peak of my showbiz career in the Philippines right before quietly exiting.]

She wakes up really early to get ready for a shooting. And scans her walk-in closet for the most flattering outfit she can find. A sight to behold, that's her objective. Stand out from the crowd and be a shining star. "I need to pull this off," is what she keeps on thinking. Otherwise, what she has to offer will not be enough for the entertainment industry. "I can't not be enough," she keeps saying to herself. No matter what it takes, she HAS to get noticed. That's how things get done in the world she revolves in.

She puts on the best beauty products with the hopes to reverse aging. Use all the quality make up to cover any scar or blemish brought about by youthful recklessness. She has to erase the tracks of tears from a sorrowful, lonely night. To the public eye, imperfection is not acceptable. She's suppose to be a goddess. Not a human with a flaw. She HAS to be immaculate. If not, the stain will take an expensive toll.

She arrives at the studio with an automatic smile in her face. Does her usual rounds of greeting with the bosses, producers, directors and staff; going cheek to cheek and initiating conversations with people she hardly knows. As she walks away, they talk ill of her and laugh at petty, shallow defects they notice. She's aware of it all but she's left with no choice. She's under their mercy. In spite her having a bad day, she has to be contained. She HAS to be nice. This is her ticket to get on top.

She stays at the dressing room along with big celebrities. With heavy inflated egos who are deeply insecure of her potential to steal the spotlight. As well as fellow starlets who see her as competition. She mingles with them all like it's one, big, happy party. Despite the power tripping from the famous ones and plastic-ness of the newbies, she rides along with it. She can't be difficult to work with. She HAS to get along. Reputation is everything.

She goes on location and fans stare with delight. They admire and adore her, wanting to get close. She's larger than life, so unreachable, thus they keep their distance. "Do they really appreciate me?" she thought. "Or are they just fascinated with my image that they see?" Even if in reality, she's just a dreamer who simply finds fulfillment in entertaining people. With no intention whatsoever to be in a status above everyone else; it's all part of the package. Her screen identity is far from her real-life persona, so she's obliged to live the double life. She'd rather be appreciated for who she truly is with the cameras out and light turned off but it cannot be. Fans love her image. She HAS to keep pretending. No one has to know.

Press people approach to know her more. They scrutinize her like a specimen under a microscope and try to dissect what makes her so special from other aspiring talents. They ask the most absurd, annoying questions and crack her out of privacy. They dig for any possible dirt that they can make a controversy out of. She maintains eye contact, composure and lovely charm. Just one wrong move, negative comments will be flashed all over the tabloids and internet aiming at her weakness. She does what she can to be appreciated. Even if it means lying and no longer being herself, she has no right to bargain. They have to love her. She HAS to be a darling. Otherwise, Pandora's Box will be opened.

Boys fancy her. Daring photo shoots from magazines bestowed her with a sex symbol. Rich men will name her price. While the bad boys see her as a conquest. A good addition to their black book and wants to bed her down. The decent men assume she's promiscuous and high maintenance. Therefore gets intimidated and just desires her from afar. As she goes on signing their magazines, she wonders. "Will they still think I'm beautiful without the push up bra, red lipstick, hair extensions and false eyelashes? Will they still be smitten if they found out I look ordinary in the morning and my tan is airbrushed?" She may begin to question her true value as a woman but it doesn't matter. Her insides don't mean a thing to them anyway. She's just a piece of meat. She HAS to fulfill their fantasies. It's all about her package.

And so the day goes by and she achieves the goal to amuse others. She considers her beauty and talent as gifts that need to be shared. She is placed on the pedestal by some, a desperate wannabe to others. She has gotten used to smiling, waving, small talking and answering interviews politely even while mending a broken heart. Her soul silently weeps at every hurtful write-up, rumor, and insult being addressed to her but she takes it all in. She always looks stunning & glamorous amidst the pain & struggles she's going through. She has mastered this act so well. She excels entertaining the world but can't barely entertain herself. A movie star. An idol. She HAS it all! Or so it seems.

The day ends with her alone in her apartment. Stripped off from the high heels, tight fitting dress, heavy make up and fake smile... she looks at her raw self in the mirror. Her ego is in ecstasy from all the fame and fortune but her soul is tormented and confused. "Can they really SEE me?" she asks herself. "Do they truly LOVE me? Will THIS be enough? Will I ever be ENOUGH?" She goes to bed every night leaving these questions unanswered. She can't afford to be stressed, for tomorrow it's another long shooting ahead. She better be prepared. She HAS to be the best. Because the world will be watching and people will be judging.

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Jaymee WINS

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