The Orange Bowl in Miami.
U2 is on stage. I am deathly afraid of heights and of falling, and the seats in the old Orange Bowl were those rickety old bleacher seats with no backs. Shortly after the band goes on stage, everyone stands on those bleacher seats to see better.
Darn it! I can’t see a thing, and my favorite band of all time is on stage. I am missing everything! Ok fine. I stand on my seat, and there he is. He is wearing that leather vest, no shirt. He’s leaning towards his side. He likes to do that. It is so cool. He has that guitar slung on his back as he sings.
“With or without you….”
It’s Bono. He is perfect. He has the best voice, the best hair. He is so cool. Every guy wants to be him. Every woman wants to be with him. I am in awe. My lighter is lit and in the air, swaying to the music in unison with 60,000 plus other fans. We didn’t have iPhone apps back then so we had to use actual lighters. For that one moment, we are no longer individuals, all of life’s problems are on hold. We are all one voice, one soul, one…
Does Bono fart?
I mean really, does he ever sit around, maybe when the band is in the studio, and they are laying down some tracks,working on their latest CD. Does he ever just…well, you know… squirt one out?
“Sorry, mate, that was some serious chili.”
Stay with me here. There is a point. Bono is my all time favorite celebrity. Everybody has one. Mine is Bono. Yours may be Tom Cruise, or Jeniffer Lopez or Justin Beiber. No wait. Please don’t let it be Justin Beiber. Anyway, why do we in America put celebrities on a pedestal that way? What is it about our society that we think that Bono can’t fart? I mean, Bono is not just a singer, he is a humanitarian, involved in the fight against poverty, and other causes. That is pretty cool.
But just recently, we learned that Bono’s ONE organization took in 15 million but only distributed about $200,000 of those funds to the people that need them. You can read an article about this here. So does that make him evil? Does that mean he is stealing the rest of the money? Well, no. That means he is human. He is just a man. He is like all of us, fallen men and women in a fallen world.
Over the years, we have been disappointed by our favorite celebs. It seems that every week there is a DUI or an intervention taking place somewhere involving one of our previously honored celebrities. So why exactly do we continue to fawn over and give attention to them, as if they are something other than imperfect children of God, susceptible to all of the temptations we all are in this world?
I would love to tell you I have this great answer to that. I don’t. But I do want to share an alternate story, another, alternate hero of mine..
It’s 1981. A child comes home from school. His mom is sitting at the kitchen table, and there are some papers on the table, legal papers. She is crying. It is the first time he can remember her crying like that. He asks what is wrong.
“Nothing. Don’t worry, just go to your room.”
Later that day, he wanders into her room and realizes that Dad’s clothes are gone. He left. He has three brothers. What now? How will they survive?
She went to work. She never worked when she was married, but now as a divorced woman with few skills, she had to find a way to support 4 boys. She had some help from family, but it wasn’t enough. She started her own business. She worked hard. But no matter how hard she worked, she was always home when her sons needed her. She even found a way for one or more of them to go see a rock concert every once in a while.
There is more to this story. She also never bad mouthed their father. As a matter of fact, even though she was extremely hurt, she made it a point to encourage her sons to be with their father. As a result, those boys were never without a father figure in their lives. Both mother and father never lost sight of the most important thing in their lives.
Today all four of those boys are men. None of them are in jail. None of them have had a DUI, or are hooked on drugs. Funny thing is, she never got famous. No one ever interviewed her for Rolling Stone magazine. She was never in the paper. Yet the impact that she had on four lives is remarkable.
Yeah I get it. Not exactly the same thing as a rock star turned humanitarian, and this article probably won’t change our society. People will still idolize fallen men in a fallen world. It is what it is. But I find it just a little sad that while Paris Hilton and Lindsey Lohan are constantly in the news for destroying their lives, the moms, dads, teachers, and pastors that help make us the people we are sometimes never even get a blog article written about them.
Well that is going to change.