Not daring to stray from the usual co-worker chatter topics of (a) rude customers, (b) mutually hated managers and (c) the awful in-store music, a fellow book peddler asked me today if I’d rather be first season “American Idol” winner Kelly Clarkson or fourth season “American Idol” winner Carrie Underwood. I thought about it and decided that I would rather be Clarkson, even though I once described her as someone who would lack stage presence even if she set herself on fire.
I imagine Underwood’s Oklahoma upbringing would have rendered her scrappy enough to kick Clarkson’s ass in a fight, but Clarkson at least doesn’t sing songs about how she hates being famous. There’s this one track of Underwood’s album called “I Ain’t in Checotah Anymore.” In it, she mentions that she’s staying in a hotel that houses more people than her hometown and that the money she spent on dinner could be a down payment on a house. Yes, Carrie, it doesn’t cost much to buy Checotah real estate when the houses there are made of twigs and burlap tarps. What really gets me is that the girl who’s shocked to be famous wrote the song after winning a contest that promises to make you famous. It’s called “American Idol,” you silly bint, not “American Eating a Can of Shit in a Dirt House in Oklahoma.”
I think I defended my choice rather well.