January 2010


When a person becomes famous, it’s like when a pig gets fat.

--This saying originates from a famous Chinese novel from the 1800s during the last dynasty: <<The Dream of the Red Mansion >>


When a pig gets fat, it will soon be slaughtered. When a person gets famous, he/she will soon meet trouble.

This saying doesn’t mean that one should avoid fame at any cost, but it reminds us the dark side of fame. Fame gives affirmation and has many positive aspects, but it also causes envy. When famous people make mistakes, they have to tolerate much harder judgement. Tiger Woods’ extramarital affairs had hardly got so much negative attention and provided material for entertainment world-wide if he had not been the world’s most famous golf-player.

Chase for fame has become a trend in our time.  Many people see only the glamorous sides of fame and forget the prices one has to pay. The Norwegian blogger Voe (14) has achieved many teenagers’ dream – to become the most famous blogger in Norway and a trendsetter. But a reportage in Aftenposten’s A-magasin in November 2009 revealed that not only she herself spends 3 hours everyday on blogging, her parents has also become her managers and spend several hours daily to go through all her emails in order to select sponsors. She acknowledges that she’s got hooked on blogging. For now she is famous and makes good money, but no one knows the long-term consequences for her. Another blogger who’s become very popular admits that he will regret it in the future. He has posted so many strange things about himself that he knows serious employers will not hire him later.

Fortunately it seldom goes so badly with famous people as with fat pigs. But this Chinese saying reminds us of the danger of fame. It can help us to get a more balanced view about world and keep inner peace and balance.