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"These are the days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed except his own." G.K.Chesterton

"You cannot grow a beard in a moment of passion." G.K.Chesterton

"As you perhaps know, I haven't always been a Christian. I didn't go to religion to make me happy. I always knew a bottle of Port would do that."C. S. Lewis

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Monday, January 31, 2005

becoming Elvis

Another week, another Elvis impersonator. There's always a silver lining in your local community newspaper...
By day he's a truck driver.
When night falls he's keeping the memory of the King of Rock 'n' Roll alive.

In my local paper this week there is the story of (another) truck driver dealing with the pains of family break-up and custody battles who seeks to turn his life around by finding salvation in a resurrected King - the King of Rock 'n' Roll, that is.

Mr Elvis Aaron Williams intones: "For me this a way to move on and become someone."

For the rest of us the question is, do we need another Elvis impersonator? This particular cultural phenomenon seems to be pretty much played out. The world is already full of Elvises. Someone ought to conduct a census - the result would certainly win a spot in the Guinness Book of Records. So many white sequined jumpsuits and velvet-lined capes, so many sideburns, so much black dye, so many ah-uh-huhs...

The real problem with Elvis impersonators, like Mr Elvis Aaron Williams, is that they only ever impersonate the ageing Elvis, the Elvis in decline, the bloated Elvis losing the battle with drugs and hamburgers, the Caesar's Palace lounge lizard Elvis. Where are the impersonators of the young and virile Elvis of the fifties who revolutionised the face of popular music? Where are the impersonators of the slick and sanitised movie star Elvis of the early sixties enjoying his wealth and fame? Where are the impersonators of the taut, trim and terrific leather-clad Comeback Elvis of the late sixties? It's always the fat Elvis of the seventies with his appalling on-stage satorial tastes who keeps getting resurrected.

If the Las Vegas Elvis was but a parody of his former glory, then his impersonators are offerring a parody of a parody. What we are left with is Elvis imitators impersonating Elvis impersonating himself.

Mr Williams ironically hopes to become someone by his performances as Elvis. But the only thing he becomes is someone else.

And tragically that someone was also wishing he too was someone else...

8:51:00 pm