The other day, Katie Price (aka Jordan) announced via her Twitter profile that she would be divorcing her third husband, a “male entertainer and model” (according to his Twitter profile, though others have him listed as a builder), called Kieran Hayler.
Let’s have a quick recap here, for those who have been living in a hole with no gossip mags. Katie Price was a glamour model called Jordan with big boobs. She had some surgery and had a baby by a footballer. She was still unpopular, so she went on I’m a Celebrity, where she met her first husband, Peter Andre. They got married in what can only be described as Price’s Circus of Bad Taste, had two children together and a hit TV show on ITV3. General consensus was that they were the couple who had sold their entire lives to the highest bidder. After four years, Price and Andre divorced, for reasons that were never properly confirmed - both parties claimed there were terrible wrongdoings they were not apt to speak about in the press. Shortly thereafter, Price took up with a cross-dressing cage fighter called Alex Reid who was terribly unpopular with… well, everyone, until he won Celebrity Big Brother and showed himself to be a bit dim-witted but over all a nice chap. They divorced less than a year later, and after a brief engagement to an Argentine model, she married Hayler last January. They had a child together last year, and Price recently announced her fifth pregnancy.
Price has written several books - both biographies and fiction (actually, they were ghost written, but she’s still managed to establish a name for herself). She made a music album with Andre and has made cameo appearances in popular TV dramas as well as releasing her own exercise DVD. She was on I’m a Celebrity twice, and had her own reality TV shows - both with Andre and without - for several series. When she split with Andre, she did an exclusive “tell all” interview with Piers Morgan, complete with tears. She has an equestrian clothing range, a lingerie range, jewellery, perfume, hair care products and appliances. Her major life events (marriages, births, anniversaries when she manages them) are usually sold to OK Magazine for an offensive sum.
By most normal standards, she should have enough money from all of this to be able to walk away. She could retire and live in her gaudy mansion with her five children, her pink tracksuits and her fake tan. I would like to think that after a matter of days, the press would lose interest in her hair extensions and botox, and she could live a quiet life of… whatever it is she does when the cameras are not rolling.
Something, though… something makes her want to continue to live her life in the public eye. She still needs our attention, whether good or bad. This week she announced that she’d caught her husband “at it” with her best friend, and went on to say they’d been having an affair for seven months… all of this, on Twitter. Of course, the responses she received ran into the thousands, and I would venture that half were less than positive. Some of the responses I read included: “is it true that your next child will actually abseil out?”; “Best. Breakup. Tweet. Ever.”; “At least you can get some good money for the story”; “I can fully understand why he would rather bed her than you.” There were also, unsurprisingly, a lot of lols and corrections of spelling mistakes.
Even the language she used in her tweet was that of a tabloid: “him and my best friend jane pountney bee [sic] having a full blown sexual affair for 7 months.” she seems to be pre-programmed to translate her life into tabloid-esque chunks of spin.
What makes a person so desperate for attention they air not just some of their dirty laundry, but every single detail of their lives, to the widest possible audience? What could make one so insecure as to seek the approval of the entire world? And so arrogant as to think we should care?
And yet, we do. The news and gossip websites were overtaken by the story in a matter of minutes; within hours there were full histories of Price’s infamous career. The following morning, the usual “newspapers” were leading with the story, their front pages screaming “Jordan: Divorce Number Three!” I don’t recall the recent announcement of her fifth pregnancy commanding so many column inches; a more cynical person may be led to wonder whether this announcement was made so publicly and sensationally on purpose, so as to ensure her spot in the limelight once more.
By this point, Price must be a millionaire several times over. She has every material possession she could possibly dream of, and enough botox to paralyse… well, most of her face. She has four healthy children, and a fifth on the way. And yet, there is something deeply sad about her story. From the very beginning of her career she has been linked to celebrities; that is, until she was elevated to celebrity status herself, when she seemed to tire of people taking her limelight, and started plucking them from obscurity instead. The money, the possessions, the surgery, the husbands, the children; none of it is enough for her. Her biggest fear seems to be that people not know what’s going on in her life; that they not know her name. How sad, to be so beholden to the whim of newspaper editors and paparazzi; to be so scared that if you can’t pull another sensational story out of the box soon, they’ll move on to the next one, and you will be forgotten.