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Thursday, July 18, 2024


Exile from Trillville-Dismal Tries at Going International – 6-28-2006

By Nick Colin

There isn’t much my buddy Lex won’t tell himself, as evidenced by his latest thought: “I’m on the verge of going international!”
To Lex, there is no need to sell millions of records or to make foreign commercials in order for one to dub themselves an “international somebody.” 50 Cent, who claimed in one of his earlier songs to be “internationally known” at a point when no one outside of New York had heard of him, was one of several inspirations for Lex’s claim. After all, he would say, “50 Cent is now a cultural phenomenon.”
Lex doesn’t consider himself an international star yet and feels that he must begin his quest in Europe. He hopes that he can find a marketable niche to exploit and use it to move beyond his self-proclaimed status as “International ladies man” and on to something bigger. I can’t really blame these pipe dreams.
After all, corny 80’s action stars like Michael Dudikoff, of American Ninja and others like him, were household names from Berlin to Carney’s Point, NJ at a time. Where was the talent? Therefore, who can’t reach unfathomable heights of celebrity without ability?
Celebrity isn’t something that develops from talent anyway. Maybe international celebrity only requires the ability to throw a spin kick, survive what should be lethal blows to the face and body, and to employ the corporate machine that molds and shapes.
In America, celebrity is a fleeting, hollow fix that instills a false sense of importance. I blame it on big business for cramming these people down our throats and making them believe that they are matter.
Americans worship celebrity, as evident by the massive success of American Idol and the overexposure of Brad and Angelina’s new baby. Meanwhile, the rest of the world as different tastes outside of Hollywood. “Going international” is a bit more complex.
Until Lex’s star rises, he clings to a thin claim that he has what it takes to make it overseas. He wants it very badly, which is half the battle, but can he adapt to foreign culture and more so, can they adapt to him? I’ve learned from my European friends, that Americans are viewed a bit differently over there than they view themselves over here.
Lex claims that he knows Europeans after spending two weeks in the Czech Republic.
He was allegedly accepted over there as if his mere presence was some sort of cause for celebration. Along with his boyhood buddy, Antoine, he would prowl the streets of Prague late at night, determined to find the action or so the story goes.
Lex said the locals liked him, but that’s a tough sell. I can’t imagine someone like him, strutting along the streets of foreign territory with the belief that he is somebody, but the appearance and demeanor of a used car salesman. He’s prone to proclaiming American superiority and starting conversations with anecdotes like, “imagine what World War II would have been like for the Allies if the United States didn’t flex on the Axis powers? It’d be sauerkraut and circuses for ya’ll!”
The locals showed him and Antoine around glamorous underground bars, all the while divulging useful tips on how to speak to Czech women, what they looked for in a suitor, and so on. Eastern Europe was his training ground, he said, and the world, will be the place where his skills yield global acceptance.
Forging a relationship with someone from a different country would be a good start. Perhaps date a foreign woman. Supposedly, he’s dated several beautiful European women when he got back to America. I can see it now.
Lex walking along the streets hand and hand as the others compare him to unbalanced couples like Hollywood starlet Mischa Barton and the scrubby wannabe rock star she is seen with in tabloids.
“Every guy has a type of female that is easier for him to obtain than others,” he tells those who will listen. “I tend to predominantly attract European women,” he would ramble to our friends.
Last week, he said that he became a “lucky man” with a new woman he met. He’d be lucky al right. He’d be lucky like the Phillies winning that game against the Yankees last week.
This woman must be totally immune to nervous, annoying banter and unfunny jokes. Maybe, she has him confused with someone else. He hopes that his European appeal with the ladies will one day translate into David Hasselhoff-like fame overseas.
I watched his sorry attempts at speaking to American and European women this summer. His looks were affable enough to start, but from there, things always slide down hill.
The one thing I’ve always heard from foreign women who come down to the shore for the summer is that they can’t stand American men who are full of themselves.
The key to international appeal depends on open-mindedness, a curiosity to learn, and the ability to be humble. So far, it’s worked for me. I’m not sure how Hasselholf carved out his niche.

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