Back on 1 December 2016 I voiced my doubts about the alleged abduction and torture of Sherri Papini — maybe a little ahead of the curve at the time, given what a clickbait frenzy the topic has become. I’ll make one further minor observation which only deepens my doubt: how many new photos of Papini have flooded the interwebz in the six months since her ‘harrowing ordeal’?  Let me answer that. Six — six new pics in six months, despite the white-hot interest surrounding the case. Screams of careful media curating to me. Maybe that’s why the California ‘supermom’ is said to have hired Nicole Wool, founder of Jones Social & PR, which usually deals with celebrities to ”leverage name and brand awareness.” Alarm bells? You decide, but I know what I think.

Less adroitly managed, but with an equally avid eye on the $$$ prize, Schapelle Corby’s release means yesterday was the day to run naked down Martin Place with a swastika tattooed on your dick, because all the media in Oz were either on the wrong plane back from Indonesia, or following the wrong Mercedes to the wrong hotel. She’s already tried to profit from her crime, to the tune of a $128,000 book deal, so don’t think Schapelle won’t spin this into a fortune. I mean, all those years spent wasting away behind bars, the poor thing, when all she did was smuggle a small enormous bag of drugs into a foreign country. It takes embarrassingly little to become a celebrity in Australia; lets see if Schapelle can’t beat Sherri Papini onto the cover of GQ. That said, she too may need some private time to start a bidding war recover from her ‘harrowing ordeal’.

Which begs the question, doesn’t it. What can I do to become instafamous and make buckets of loot from the insatiable public? Something contentious, obviously, which will divide the nation for and against and generate enough heat to motivate the eleven surviving print-media journalists left in this country to paparazzi the shit out of me at every public appearance. I could easily pretend to become lost in the Blue Mountains, surviving for three months on goanna droppings and my own urine. I could even do some cagey product endorsement, along the lines of “and I would surely have perished from hypothermia if not for my Thermarest™mattress” unquote. All I need is a nice cave to duck into when the search party get too close. Hey, as it happens, I know just the place!

Knowing my luck, I’d let slip the Freudian error just as the swag started to pour in. Something along the lines of, “Fifty thou? Sure I’ll do the interview. Wow, I didn’t think faking my disappearance, I mean, oh shit, making an appearance on the ‘Today’ show would be so lucrative!” It would give Karl Stefanovic another opportunity for some faux-rage to create some frisson with his increasingly plastic-looking co-host. Just give me the mayhem, Karl baby; mayhem and a bucket of cold-hard cash. Or maybe I’ll keep my day job, my self-respect, and that little thing called integrity, all of which means (of course) that I am gonna die poor. It just pisses me off that it always seems to be the cheats and frauds that are flying Business Class, not people like me.







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