To me, Anna Nicole Smith was one of those rare larger-than-life people. She was born very poor in Texas and, were it not for her sheer ambition and beauty, she likely would have been a destitute single mom, clerking at Wal-Mart or doing quality inspections at a local mill. Instead, she became first a starlet, then a caricature, a tabloid mainstay.
She had the kind of looks a plain jane like me dreams of having. The curves, the flawless face and beautiful grin. Those good looks landed her in Playboy in the early 90s. Next came a modeling career. Pretty soon, she was a poster girl. Now that her life is ended, I fear she will be remembered as the ultimate dumb blonde. That's very sad in light of the fact that she virtually willed herself from that small, poor Texas town to superstardom.
I think she thought money would make her happy. (Aren't we all guilty of thinking of that at one time or another?) The tabloids and Court TV could have spared us the details of her second marriage to the way-over-the-hill oil tycoon and the subsequent fight with his son over the estate.
I'm probably one of the few people that will admit to watching her reality show. My husband and I happened on it one night while flipping. It offered a look inside a life blessed with so much, yet lacking. While she was able to afford nice clothing, expensive meals and beautiful homes, she didn't seem to have much in terms of real relationships or stability. The people she trusted and the people she called friends were actually employees, people whose loyalty was bought. I know it was just a television show, but it appeared as though the only person she loved and the only person who loved her was her son, Daniel. We know his life was cut so tragically short under circumstances very similar to his mother's. On the show, she was completely estranged from her blood family. I think at one point she said she had not talked to her mother in years. The show really brought Anna Nicole's flaws to the front, including her alcoholism and her weight problems. She appeared to be drunk so often on the show that I couldn't tell if she was really drunk or if it was just an act. I don't think it was an act. This afternoon, I heard Larry King say she was drunk one night when she appeared on his show. The fact that the show even aired makes me wonder whose interests Anna Nicole's
The irony of life is a cruel punishment for us all. Having gotten through those awful desperate hours following the loss of her child, she seemed to be making somewhat of a recovery. And she had so much to live for in her infant daughter. I saw her on one of those celebrity shows last week and she looked good. Her weight seemed to be at a healthy level. Her smile had returned.
Rest in peace, Anna Nicole.