aka A Washed Up Celebrity Celebrity’s Guide to Attaining Spiritual, and more importantly, Celebrity Redemption… With Preston From Celebrity Big Brother
Step one: Make a nebulous statement that attempts to be deep and meaningful yet actually comes across as idiotic to show your ideological assimilation with your most fruitful fan base of people who think wearing a traffic cone on their head is hilarious. “I find it impossible to believe in something [voodoo] that is totally unproven.”
Step two: Remind people who you are, in case they have forgotten given the churning high turnover rate in the world of celebrity celebrities, taking care to guide their attention to your most credible escapade, not necessarily your most famous/notorious. “My name’s Preston, and I’m the lead singer in a band called The Ordinary Boys.”
Step three: After reaffirming your credentials, vow to never, ever, never appear on GMTV or This Morning else the scabrous sobriquet of “Preston from Celebrity Big Brother” will be reborn.
Step four: Make an ignorant, foolhardy statement about voodoo to pander to what your viewers think about this particular credo, but do so in a way that suggests that you might know just a little bit more than them and are therefore a trustworthy vanguard to educate them about said religion. “If there’s a black sheep of religion, then it’s voodoo; and that’s why it’s always interested me.”
Step five: While you are making a shameless grab for the more erudite and cultured fan who once adored The Ordinary Boys before the CBB farce, make sure you don’t alienate those fans who voted for you in CBB and indelibly refer to you as “Chantelle and Preston” whether your estranged wife happens to be with you or not. Achieve this with the inappropriate donning at every single opportunity a pair of bats’-wing sunglasses.
Step six: Ensure that you speak to someone with a more absurd name than you. Enter Ross Heaven, a voodoo practitioner who laid Preston down on the floor before spitting alcohol on him and appearing to try and remove his brain from his cranium using only his tongue.
Step seven: Remember, people who worship celebrity celebrities are uniformly morons. Exploit this by illustrating the evils of the slave trade with black and white film footage from about 100 years ago. You’ll be able to deceive them into thinking the slave trade only ended in 1913, or that films have been around for about 300 years. Either way, being cultural and historical goldfish, by next week they’ll forget that the slave trade ever existed.
Step eight: When confronted by people from ethnic communities who have a profound belief in voodoo, adopt an open quizzical expression like a reception class toddler eager to learn. Compound this by weakening your previously militant stance on religion: “I was coming to terms with the fact that voodoo isn’t about black magic.”
Step nine: At a genuine, repeat genuine, voodoo ceremony, get into the spirit of things by swaying along to the uplifting tribal rhythms to show how open you are to secular ideas.
Step ten: Once more say something nonsensical to make sure that your celebrity celebrity fans don’t abandon you, hoping into the bargain that people don’t remember your early lyrics were blessed with such acrobatic eloquence you were talked of as the New Morrissey. “Alain was so smiley, and I felt like I’m so miserable, and like, and like so sort of non-believing about, and so sort of irreversible realism within me is just really boring.”
Step 11: If you fear that you might be losing fans, remind everyone once again that you’re most famous for being a reality TV star. However, do it in such a way that it simultaneously makes you appear superior. Talk about your great new song, but lament that your record company thinks the chorus “sounds like Matt Willis”.
Step 12: Be respectful to the voodoo priests so you don’t revert back to the same bigoted Western values that you began your journey with (and be fearful that it also might seem a bit imperialist), even when the priest’s vague, psychobabble advice seems to have been lifted wholesale from Russell Grant’s astrology column. “Be courageous, humility is very important, you will require the effort of more than one person to succeed.”
Step 13: Before entering the unknown, in Preston’s case a flight to the voodoo heartland in Benin, express your vulnerability using the Celebrity Celebrity Dictionary of Fake Emotions, taking care to muddle your sentiments up to make it seem like the gibbering of a bequiffed lunatic. “I’m really, really, really looking forward to Africa in terms of, you know, I can’t wait to go to Africa…” If you’re having difficulty finding that phrase in the Dictionary it’s next to the BB synonyms for “I’m really glad I’m up for eviction!”
Step 14: Remind everyone you have a soul, and didn’t lose it on the first night of CBB. “The reason I’m doing this is because I want to see stuff like that [voodoo ceremonies].”
Step 15: Good work, you’re halfway through. Time to promote the proper career again! “I’ve written a new song and everyone seems to like it. I reckon we’ve got a smash hit on our hands!”
Step 16: Again remember your audience have an intellect on a par with the corpse of that goat that was just sacrificed. Returning from the ad break, give a two-minute recap even though the ad break itself lasted just two minutes.
Step 17: People who are successful have emotions and often exhibit vulnerability at the drop of a cynically skewiffed baseball cap. Never be afraid to show emotions. “I’ve got to take my top off, which I’m really embarrassed about.”
Step 18: Adhere to the principle of When In Rome. People won’t respect you, or more importantly buy your records, if you come across as if your sole aim in life is to puke up in an Ibiza nightclub; don’t be afraid of being ostentatious using language fools falteringly only ever use when in the presence of royalty or are in court. “I feel truly honoured to be in the esteemed company of the adviser to the pope of voodoo.”
Step 19: Claim to have swallowed the philosophy of voodoo whole, as being receptive to new, fantastical ideas is a cornerstone of the lives of many people who will be buying your records. “Incredible! The deity I had chosen in Bristol has chosen me, too!”
Step 20: Finally, invoke the sympathy of the audience. Let them look on with pity as the voodoo priest predicts that “you will be with your wife for a short time”, while everyone watching (remember every single one of them a potential customer) already knows that the pair of you split up between this documentary’s production and broadcast.