It isn’t often that I think about Leo Sayer. I wouldn’t be now had I not decided to take a very quick peek at Celebrity Big Brother, and this because I felt moved to check out the phenomenon that is Jade Goody by reading about it in that’s so pants. BB still has the power to make my jaw literally drop. I am gob-smacked by ghastliness. After two seconds I feel as though I am there with them picking my toenails on the sofa, after thirty (in which at least three celebs broke down and wept because of nomination syndrome) I have served ten years, am waiting for parole and have turned hyperbolic. I stayed long enough to take in Leo irritating a couple of “mates” by banging on about his erstwhile successes, then I switched off.
His songs came back to me, though – The Show Must Go On, One Man Band and a haunting one called The Dancer about a girl trapeze artist who loved a singer, (especially the refrain: “and it rains all down the avenue just for you, boy”). I had a look at YouTube to see what I could find and discovered that L.S. had walked out of The House because they wouldn’t provide him with clean underpants. I watched the clip of him bashing at the door to get outside, telling the security people who kept grabbing him to fuck off, that he wanted to go back to Australia and that being in the BB house was demeaning. He was upset.
I haven’t looked, but the tabloids must be full of it now – how he was too much up his own arse to wash his own underwear and ha ha it serves him right, who does he think he is, we can probably write it ourselves without bothering to look. Publicity is obviously the point of the whole thing: ratings. In order for these to remain buoyant one has to up the ante and apparently what keeps us turned on and tuned in is seeing people demeaned, especially the up-their-arses celebs. The very first BB ever, which I did watch, seems almost like the Garden of Eden.
But nothing lost, one could say, and if the story hangs around Leo like a bad smell why should we care? Off he goes, diminished, as they all will be, must be, if the show is to succeed, which it will if we read the glitter in Davina McColl’s eye. We watch, get hooked and are diminished. And it rains all down the avenue.