Magazine July 5, 2010, Issue

Twilight of the Idols

Cast member Robert Downey Jr. and his wife Susan pose at the premiere of Iron Man 2 at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood, Calif., April 26, 2010. (Mario Anzuoni/Reuters)

Celebrities are people you know even though you don’t know them.

We know our family, friends, and colleagues. We know of the officers of movements we belong to, and performers in the arts and sports we enjoy. The people everyone knows are celebrities. You know, say, your sister, your favorite writers on the Huffington Post, and the bullpen of the Yankees. A small group will know your sister, a larger one will know the writers and pitchers. Everyone knows Obama and A-Rod. They are celebrities.

It was warm, not brutal, and my wife and I went to eat dinner at our favorite …

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Helen Thomas was a fixture — a reporter for 40 years, a columnist for ten — always a plus in Washington. She was a left-wing scold: another plus.

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