Where are they Now? Following Up on People Who Had Their 15 Minutes of Fame (Part I)

    July 25, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    The mass media simply serves as a vehicle to get the public emotional knee jerk response kick started. Then it lets the public get carried away while making things up about the people who unwillingly get swept up by their 15 minutes of fame which creates a frenzy in and of itself. 

    Then after all the hubbub dies down, these people are then displaced due to their 15 minutes of fame from all the media attention.    Sure, crappy reality shows can highlight the plight of some c-level celebrities, but what are the rest of these people doing now after their 15 minutes of fame?

    1) Jennifer Wilbanks

    Media reports emerged that her husband to be, John Mason was a “born again” virgin abstaining from premarital sex.   Certainly, this woman did what all sensible women should do before their wedding days to a SEXUAL FREAK by going AWOL and making up a fake story to avoid a life relegated to a miserable suburban servitude.  However, The public is an interesting beast, and with this woman’s bulging eyes, the nation was captivated.

    After suing her former partner for book rights, Wilbanks married a a twice married landscaper and is apparently 30,000 dollars in debt.

    2) Balloon Boy

    Many people come to Hollywood each year to become involved with the entertainment industry.  Richard Heene and Mayumi Iizuka met in an acting class, never made it as actors, and then combined forces to breed balloon boy.  In 2009, the nation was captivated when this boy got apparently carried away by a gas filled balloon.

    Baloon Boy Saga

    Actually, this was a publicity stunt

    For their involvement in the hoax, Richard Heene was sentenced to 90 days in jail, not allowed to profit from any of the story, forced to pay 36,000 in restitution, and his wife was forced to do 20 days in weekend jail.  Since having your parents in jail pretty much means you can do whatever you want, nowadays, Falcon Heene, a.k.a. balloon boy is attempting to use his notoriety to create a heavy metal career.

    3) Bryan Barton

    To create awareness of Arizona’s porous national border with Mexico, congressional candidate Bryan Barton enlists with the Minuteman Project.  Despite strict instructions not to venture out or interact with anybody, Barton meets Jose Antonio Sepúlveda and causes a media shitstorm.  While initial reports grossly indicating Bryan Barton held the immigrant against his will, it was later determined that the man graciously accepted the water, cereal, milk, and 20 dollars Barton gave to him.

    Bryan Barton

    In addition to doing business development for internet websites, Nowadays, Bryan Barton is masquerading as a pickup artist in Sacramento local area malls.

    4) Ted Williams “The Man with the Golden Voice”

    Ted Williams-Man with Golden Voice

    In 2011, a guy with a funny sign and an Ohio News reporter with a camera met at an intersection.  The guy with the funny sign wowed the reporter with a beautiful radio voice. Then the internet became involved and this guy experienced an exponential rise in fame so large, he is now only behind Hall of Fame Baseball Player, Ted Williams on Google Search.  Williams was offered voice over work all over Cleveland and people throughout the world were doing feel good stuff for this guy.  It would have been a great story….

    Ted Williams Book

    Actually, aside from a few drug and alcohol relapses, Williams has had a great story. As of press time, He recently published a book, has been working for a large American company doing voiceover work, and is offering personalized voice mail messages for 19.95.


    The Mass media is a juggernaut that will find a story and completely devour everything about it while making up incredulous claims along the way.  Nightly news, magazines, newspapers, and search engines are in collusion to focus on the “in” and “now” by creating “acceptable news” that is “fit” for public consumption. This basically means, the mass media will focus a high amount of attention on some person, oversensationalizing events, while businesses and entrepreneurs offer up endorsements and sponsorships to take advantage of the media frenzy.  In the meanwhile, everyone abandons commonly practiced sensibilities like ethics and integrity to give people “15 minutes of fame”.

    Then somehow through over saturation, their incredulous claims will disappear from the collective memory banks of everybody.  In a perfect world, the public would be an engaged and intelligent citizenry that’s able to filter out the lowest possible common denominator and call “shennanigans” on senseless reporting and journalistic terpitude.  Since this is not the case, stay tuned for follow ups on: Where Are They Now? Following up on People Who Had their 15 Minutes of Fame


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