Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Irrelevant: Facts of Lucy, Are they True?

I'm going to talk about something kinda irrelevant to the purpose of this blog. If you are here purely just to enjoy information and pictures related to Miss Ball and nothing else, skip reading this, because I don't want to unload my problems on you unfairly. Trust me.

I stumbled upon a social media page where someone has criticized my Instagram account, saying that certain information that were quoted by Lucy and Desi interviews have not been heard of, and therefore some of the facts are inaccurate.

(Sometimes, someone on Instagram will simply comment some dull-witted comment like "This is not true," instead of a polite and respectful one like "hey, where did you get this information from?" and I will reply "go to my blog, on the right hand panel, there is a list of the books and videos I've examined." I appreciate politeness and respect from people, especially when I'm providing them a source of entertainment- it's only fair, isn't it?)

I find that I need to address this unmerited criticism formally. I'm not targeting this at anyone, and am merely opening a platform to discuss this issue. I'm pretty sure many people want to hear about this also. Let me explain my point of view to you in a logical manner:

First of all, I have never once stated that those write-ups are hardcore facts that every reader should abide by. They are simply information. We all need to form our own opinions from the information presented to us and not treat the information as the Holy Grail.

Second of all, I have never once cooked up any thing on my own when I include those "facts". I take the information from books that I've read, or Internet websites I've come across. Some information are even obtained from YouTube. The owners of all other fan pages do the same, I assure you. Additionally, there are many Desi and Lucy fans who have been sincere enough to type out those magazine interviews so that the world would have a soft copy. Consequently, the onus is on these... shall I say, "critics" to search for them before jumping into conclusion. Just because they haven't heard of certain things before does not mean they are untrue.

If we dwell into logic, there is a fallacy known as the "argumentum ad ignorantiam" or arguing from ignorance. It is a fallacy that occurs when someone argues that because we don't know something is true, it must be false, or vice versa.

Thusly, we should not simply discount information simply because they have been unheard of, but should remain humble and keep an open mind.

Let us go further by examining the nature of online and offline literature. Are they ever 100% accurate? Writers basically obtain content to write about celebrities from celebrities' inner and outer social groups. In the case of Lucille, writers have spoken to her childhood friends; people who have known her from Jamestown; her Hollywood colleagues and friends; her Broadway coworkers; her neighbors; her coworkers, her children; her students, her friends, and people who have simply talked to Lucy before. Some of the information aren't even cited. Even online write-ups or interviews that have been manually typed to make a soft copy cannot be 100% accurate.


Authors, writers and fans of Lucille or any other celebrities are human beings, aren't they? (I hope they are.) Since they are all human beings, they are biased! Let's face the fact: human beings are biased and will forever be. Though we try to be neutral at times, we still aren't unbiased. Even opinions based on neutrality are biased, because it's simply our own opinion that our opinions are neutral.

People who were around a celebrity or have talked to him or her before may have first or second hand experience, but when they relate the story or opinion, it'll be drenched with partiality. Maybe because they wanted Desi and Lucille's life after divorce to be more romantic. Maybe because they felt that Gary was a better husband. Maybe because they bore a grudge from Lucille's treatment to them. Maybe because they were simply nasty and had ulterior motives.

So pray tell me, what information is completely accurate?

Let me share a quote to you. All Media Communication majors have definitely heard of this:
"The media doesn't tell us what to think, but what to think about."

The onus is on you to believe if the "facts" given by these people are true or not.

Thirdly, I would like to point out that there are lots of popular quotes and stories online about celebrities. These quotes and anecdotes can go viral with the help of microblogging sites as well as social media websites. However, just because these information are well exposed to people doesn't mean that they are true. They simply are very appealing and readers consume and popularize them.

There is a logical fallacy called "argumentum ad populum" or the appeal to belief/people/majority. It means that a proposition is claimed to be true or good solely because many people believe it to be so.

Let me throw an example to you. It is commonly believed that in her contract, Vivian Vance was forced to gain a certain amount of weight in order to look less appealing that Miss Ball. People believe this because this rumor has taken root and has manifested over the number of years. Since everyone believes so, it is taken to be true. Few of us have bothered to review old magazine and television interviews, neither have we checked out insiders' takes on this (refer to THIS PAGE for answers). However, a popular belief does not entail accuracy and soundness.

Fourthly, even the celebrities' own biographies cannot be 100% accurate. I hate to point this out, but even Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball have talked about the same things with different information substantiated. If you have read both their biographies, you would know what I mean. If you don't, let me point how to the night before they eloped as an instance. I shall not go further into details, but take their books and read this part side by side for your own.

As readers, we can only respect the celebrities' decision to present certain information in a certain way to us because they have their reasons for doing so. We should not act like aggressive sharks, maliciously pursuing accuracy and complete truth. We are not the paparazzi. This is essential especially when we consider ourselves as fans of the celebrities. I think that as a fan, one shouldn't endeavor to expose their half-truths or lies or omissions of truth, but we should endeavor to understand why the celebrities has done so. No one is an angel, neither is one a complete devil. Everyone has done something shameful or wrong. There is no point harping on the negative and neglecting the positive, even though sadly again, it's just human nature to perform the opposite.

After all, we should provide the unconditional adoration and accept who the celebrity is and what he or she has done, since we have chosen to form a good opinion of him or her?

Lastly, and this is based on my hurt feelings and not logic, I am feeling very hurt by this particular person who has criticized me unfairly on a social media webpage, because on one hand, he or she is criticizing my "facts" as being untrue, and on the other, he or she is using my "facts" to be presented as her own on her own pages. To top it all, he or she uses my pictures. This is grossly unfair and unethical!

I know that he or she has taken the pictures from me because I was the one who have colorized and/or edited them. I even have the soft copy of the picture files in my computer. Some of the pictures have been purchased by me. I have taken the liberty to scan the pictures or books (not infringing copyright, of course) to share with people. As I have mentioned long ago in one of my blog entries, I really don't mind people taking my pictures and information. If I feel that a picture has been edited by me and I deserve the credit, I'll watermark it. It's the internet, for heaven's sake, nothing belongs to us once we've posted it. I love it when people remember, appreciate and love the late Miss Ball, and when they grab my pictures, it also means that they find my artwork pleasing to their eyes.

So why the hell do I even bring up this point?

I'm doing so because this joker took my 'facts", presented as his or her own after saying that my "facts" aren't true, and to top it all, took my pictures, removed the watermark, and presented as his or her own after that hurtful criticism. There is just some ethical rule bring broken within this framework. I mean, there are nicer ways to find out where I get the information before the public ngeative judgment. He or she can contact me in one way or another, through Instagram, Blogger, or emailing, but no.

There are lots of blogs dedicated to the late Miss Ball, but none of them has focused on providing information that I'm sure thousands of befuddled and bemused fans need. I'm merely trying to correct some unfair misconceptions and judgment of Miss Ball and Mr Arnaz, and am providing some form of an answer as to why Miss Ball acted the way she did, why Mr and Mrs Arnaz couldn't stay together, and if they had found happiness elsewhere or were enamored with each other till they died. I'm sure we've all gone through this phase of confusion before, and I'm positive that we have all felt hurt and disillusioned that though Lucy and Ricky Ricardo had enjoyed a happy ending, Lucy and Desi Arnaz didn't. This is the purpose of my providing information other than just pictures, and my purpose is just the same as the authors of books and producers of documentaries.

I know, I know, I need to move on with my life because there are all sorts of people in the world. I'm being completely silly for being hurt by this and I should get a life. Give me some time, I'll be fine.

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