This past week I had the privilege of speaking to the MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group in the Bedford Hills area outside of New York City. A well-known TV personality lives three miles down the road from my wonderful and gracious hostess and MOPS hospitality queen, Julie. "She gives out king-sized Snickers on Halloween," Julie said of the celebrity. But Julie would just as soon buy her own candy bar at the grocery store, where she runs into the famous "entertainment queen" on a semi-regular basis.
Julie gets to see a different side of this person than we do: she's seen a woman who's net worth is estimated at $650 million squabble with a young, inexperienced cashier over being slighted thirty-two cents.
Julie's witnessed this premier etiquette guide rudely disrupt a yoga class by coming in late and asking too many questions.
A lot of other famous people live near Julie. One time she entered a restaurant to see an old high school friend (whom she had spent a lot of time with) and now famous actor. He acted as if Julie had never existed.
Another time Julie answered a local ad for an exotic chicken for sale. "You can find the information on my website." The owner spoke to Julie over the phone in a sweet and humble-sounding voice. "Just scroll past the children's books until you find the link for 'chickens.'"
A little while later Julie found herself in a chicken coop, buying a hen from the unassuming Jan Brett, well-loved and well-known children's book author and illustrator.
It's been said if you want to discover the true character of a person, give him or her--not hardship--but power. There is something about fame and position that reveals who we really are.
What are your thoughts? Do you think a person comes into fame being who they already are, or does fame itself change a person? Or both?