Monday, September 22, 2008

Mama's Baby, Papa's Shady

Good Luck, Dannielynn

© 2008 Leighann Lord

Okay, let me be very clear right up front: I have no idea what I’m talking about, but what kind of cultural commentator would I be if I let that stand in the way of giving my opinion. That said, here we go.

Dannielynn, daughter of Anna Nicole Smith and Larry Birkhead, celebrated her second birthday like most two year olds: on the cover of the September 23rd issue of "Us Weekly Magazine." I am probably one of the few people in America, or even the world, who doesn’t know the intimate details of Anna Nicole Smith’s life and her baby daddy drama. Just because the circus is in town doesn’t mean you have to go. I know the big picture, water cooler facts but if Anna Nicole’s life were to find itself as a category on "Jeopardy," I’d lose.

Consequently, I don’t know anything about Larry Birkhead, but seeing him hold his baby daughter like a pay check, I couldn’t shake the feeling that I was gazing into the eyes of an oily parlor snake. After the untimely deaths of her brother and notorious mother one would think a concerned father would want to give his child a quiet life outside the media spotlight. Instead Larry is all too willing to do a splashy photo shoot and discuss the minute details of her young life with a national magazine. Did I hear somewhere that Daddy Larry sold pictures of his daughter at her mother’s grave? Somebody please tell me that’s an urban legend.

One can’t help but wonder what the future holds for Dannielynn. How good are her chances for a normal life when her own papa pimps her out? How will the father-daughter relationship fare when she goes from happy toddler to sullen teen? Thankfully, she was born into money and she’s gonna need it. The media has shown us over and over again – Britney, Paris, Lindsey – that money and fame can fix any problem, ameliorate any hurt and gloss over any short coming. Technically, money doesn’t actually fix your flaws as much as it makes the people around you more willing to overlook them.

I really hope I’m wrong. Already destined to live a life in constant comparison to a mother she’ll never know, maybe Dannielynn will grow up without the desire to be part of the circus her Dad is hard selling tickets to. But with Larry at her side I get that nagging feeling that we may see Dannielynn on a future season of "Celebrity Rehab." Perhaps we’ll get to read her "Daddy Dearest" tell all book, if her father doesn’t beat her to it.

I paint a terrible picture of a man I don’t know. He can’t possibly be all bad. He’s probably a way better Dad than Darth Vader. Vader tried to kill Luke (Skywalker). Darth Larry just wants to sell photo ops to the highest bidder. Maybe he knows he’s got to strike while the iron is hot; get as much money as he can before the kid grows up and emancipates herself from his vampiric clutches.

I hope Dannielynn will not become that old, lonely, wealthy heiress, who falls for a dashing young man. The one that charms his way into her heart and will, which inexplicably upon her death leaves him the bulk of her estate. Now that’s magazine cover quality stuff.

Thank you for reading The Urban Erma.

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