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The price of reality

By Tammy Danielson

Fri, Aug 24th, 2012
Posted in All Columnists

WARNING: this article contains derogatory comments about our TV viewing in 2012 from a critical perspective. So, if you read on, just remember that you were warned (smile).

Do you ever wonder what happened to the real “movie stars” that we used to beg to go watch at the theater and dream of getting to meet one day? They are still out there, but it seems they are quickly being put out to pasture by this crazy society’s need to watch “reality TV.”

As I watched a celebrity awards show recently and watched the commentator interview Hollywood stars walking the red carpet, it was sad to see so many of them titled on the screen as “Celebrity Reality Star.” First of all, many of them have obtained that tagline by being kooky, obnoxious, rude, or belligerent---not the ideal TV role model for our children. And, second of all, if they are being paid to have cameras follow them around all day then it is not a true statement of their real life. How many of those reality stars actually let the camera film them looking like crap---now that is reality! You rarely will see one of the Housewives of _____ (enter almost any city name here) with smeared lipstick, unwashed hair, or last year’s jeans on. Now that is MY reality. My point behind this article is that it seems like we should be more involved in the reality of our own family than someone else’s family. Did you know that the Social Security Administration states that at least two of the top baby names for this past year were also the names of popular people on reality TV?—Whew, thank gosh it wasn’t Snooki! Having five girls in your class with that name just seems a bit stranger than five Jennifers…ha!

Believe me when I say that I don’t think true “movie stars” are without their issues but most of them did learn a craft and then were broadcast to the world instead of being broadcast to the world through reality TV and then trying to make money off of those minutes of fame. Wow…has this been critical enough for you?

As I try not to fall off of my soapbox, I will confess to you that I am a reality TV junkie from way back. Yes, I faithfully watched the Howells, Maryanne, Ginger, the Professor, the Skipper and Gilligan each week to see if they were still alive and untouched by the many cannibals that inhabited the island. After all, at age eight, that was reality to me and it was more than likely the inspiration for that famous series about survivors.

One of my many questions about the island---How bad did they stink since their deodorant supply had to have been depleted after the first month? Did they find a jungle root that worked just as well? We’ll never know. So, if you are like me and trying to resist the reality TV craze, take this recipe with you on a picnic or bike ride and make your own memories about your family reality!

Great Grilled Quesadillas

•1 red onion, sliced

• 1/3 cup white vinegar

• 1 Tbsp. sugar

• 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/2-inch

thickness (to speed this up, use precooked chicken breast strips)

• 1/4 cup barbecue sauce

• 4 flour tortillas (6 inch)

• 4 cheese single slices (or shredded if you prefer)

• 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

DIRECTIONS: Heat grill to medium heat. Cook onions in boiling water 5 min. or until tender; drain. Place onions in medium bowl. Add vinegar and sugar; mix well. Refrigerate until ready. Grill chicken 5 to 6 min. on each side or until done, brushing with barbecue sauce for the last 5 min. Cut into thin strips. Top tortillas with chicken, onions and Singles; fold in half. Grill 1 to 2 min.

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