Surly Hurley and the muddle that is fame

Share

Those of us who support women and hate the idea of fame often wonder if certain celebrities are getting an unfair press. When someone is quite pretty, and famous for nothing much, you read the adverse headlines and assume that jealousy is involved. Thanks, then, to Liz Hurley, for showing the world that she gets exactly the press she deserves.

Last week, at Perth airport, Hurley and Shane Warne were approached by a TV reporter, who asked them some fairly polite questions about the previous day's cricket match. Warne tactfully kept his mouth shut, but Hurley walked straight into the reporter, told her off for being in the way, and then leant close into her face and said, "I think that you should fuck off." As the reporter retired, looking astonished, Hurley and Warne were filmed smirking at each other, triumphantly. Doesn't she know that swearing at a reporter means seven years of bad press?

As a former reluctant gossip columnist, I know how the surprise celebrity attack can feel. I once went up to a well-known Tory grandee at the very swish opening of a new art gallery on the South Bank. "Excuse me, sir," I stammered. "Are you enjoying the exhibition?" He looked at me as if he had just caught me desecrating his grandmother's grave, and marched away, muttering "Oh, fack orf!" under his breath. Was it really that rude of me, to interrupt him drinking his free champagne and contemplating a giant picture of Tracey Emin's crotch?

A prize-winning, brilliant author, with whom, in less famous times, I once skipped arm-in-arm down Piccadilly, later took against me. Years later, I followed her into a ladies' loo, and tried to explain who I was, and that we used to get on. "I know who YOU are!" she spat. "You're Cassandra." I am not. That was another diarist. And a man.

Authors, perhaps, are sensitive types, and it is easy to understand why they might lash out after a series of harsh reviews. But their targets may not be the critics. A colleague once attended a writer's Sunday-evening event. "Congratulations," he told the author. "You must be very proud of this party that you've organised. I'm here to write something about it for tomorrow's paper." The author looked down her wine glass at him and gave him the full Liz Hurley.

Naturally, celebrities are tortured and conflicted, and many can't decide if they want to be famous. On a day off, an old friend and I had to leave a restaurant because a large comedian kept interrupting our conversation in a loud and desperate attempt to be recognised. When a colleague later tried to interview the same comic at a press conference about his new job, he became aggressive and shouty: "How do I feel? How do you think I feel? What's that supposed to mean?"

I shouldn't complain, having never been on the receiving end of press intrusion. Until recently, when two drunk trade journalists berated me on a train. They had mistaken me for Rebekah Brooks. I didn't swear… but I wanted to.

twitter.com/@katyguest36912

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive or Senior Sales Executive - B2B Exhibitions

£18000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive or Senior Sal...

Recruitment Genius: Head of Support Services

£40000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Warehouse Team Leader

£22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leading company produces h...

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Manager / Sales - OTE £40,000

£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT provider for the educat...

Day In a Page

Read Next
A press image from the company  

If men are so obsessed by their genitals, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities of sex?

Chloë Hamilton
A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory