Juliette Bains: Glued to celebrity meltdowns as they start to look like mugs

SMILE FOR THE CAMERA: Justin Bieber in the mugshot issued by US police after his recent arrest.
SMILE FOR THE CAMERA: Justin Bieber in the mugshot issued by US police after his recent arrest.
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You can bet that most photos we see of celebs strutting down the red carpet have been meticulously planned down to even the tiniest detail.

But there’s a refreshing vulnerability when it comes to their somewhat unexpected celebrity mugshots.

Gawky, shy and embarrassed, the image of an awkward Hugh Grant in that infamous mugshot after his brush with the law is etched in our memories.

The British actor’s involvement with a prostitute in LA was one of the biggest celebrity scandals at the time, and his shocked fans felt duped after falling for his previously charming image.

There’s something about that photo that shows us another side to the actor.

His awkward body language, the now totally unfashionable glasses slung over the collar of his creased polo shirt and the ‘Why the hell did I do that?’ look on his face points to a vulnerable, more human version of the Hollywood pin-up, who had previously been put on a pedestal.

Grant was 34 years old at the time, confessed quickly to the crime and has since spoken of his regret.

But there seems to be a defiance in young stars nowadays, coupled with a feeling that they are entitled to do whatever they like, when ever and where ever they like.

Of course, I’m largely talking about baby-faced Justin Bieber.
The 19-year-old was arrested in Miami last week on suspicion of driving under the influence, resisting arrest and drag racing his Lamborghini, which is worth an estimated $250,000 by the way.

There’s not many 19-year-olds who earn (a reported) $58million a year and can afford cars and a lifestyle like that.

And thank God, because who knows where we would be if we were in a world full of Biebers.

His numerous run-ins with the cops give the impression the cocky young star feels like he’s untouchable.

It’s just weeks since the teenager’s alleged egg attack on his neighbour’s home that’s said to have caused thousands of dollars of damage, and months after the brothel and strip club rumours.

And his mugshot says it all.

Smiling widely, baring his perfectly bleached teeth and showing off his carefully coiffured hair, the singer doesn’t show the slightest bit of humiliation or embarrassment.

In fact, he almost looks proud to pose in his prison uniform.

Whether innocent or guilty, it’s selfish that he seems happy to laugh off the situation when he’s got a following of millions of adoring and impressionable young fans.

But he’s probably not ever had to think of anyone but himself, and that’s not necessarily his fault.

I imagine even the cutest, sweetest kid placed in Bieber’s position would turn into a terror if given the same global attention, screaming fans and seemingly endless amount of cash.

There are no rules for them, no boundaries.

And we’ve seen it before.

Britney, Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, Amanda Bynes – they’ve all had their fair share of highly publicised troubles in recent years.

Why does it intrigue us so much?

For some reason, we love to watch celebs go into public meltdown (Britney’s headshave being a prime example).

But the truth is, it’s sad to see young stars suffer – no matter how smug they are or how much money they make.

We’re all aware that often it’s a cry for attention, and it’s worrying to think these youngsters might not have anyone around them who wants to genuinely help, without lining their own pocket first.

Whilst some stars have taken to Twitter to call Bieber names, Lady Gaga tweeted to her ‘Little Monsters’ that we should support his Beliebers while their idol is going through a troubling time.

But who is it that will be supporting Bieber?

Teddy bear troubles during eagerly anticipated visit

After months of waiting, I’ve finally met the new neighbours.

You might remember that I went to the previously unseen lengths of baking cookies in a bid to break the ice with the movers-in but ended up leaving the sugary treats outside their door when there was no answer.

We finally crossed paths last week and made plans to pop to a local bar for a few drinks.

However, before we even made it to the bar I’d already managed to make a bit of an idiot of myself.

After chatting at their home for a bit, I invited them over to see my place. I’d made sure the house was tidy just in case, and took a bit of pride in showing them round. But unfortunately, I’d totally forgotten to hide my teddy bear. Not only is this teddy bear bright pink, but he also wears some very fetching pink dungarees and a hat to match.

I don’t think it went down too well that their 26-year-old neighbour still has a teddy bear, let alone a luminous pink one. It’s fairly unsurprising then, that I’ve not seen them since.
Part of me feels like it’s time to grow up, but the other part isn’t ready to let go of my childish ways. For now, the bear is going nowhere. I just need make sure he goes into hibernation when guests visit in future.

Friends’ visit shows the times they are a-changin’

Most of us would agree that Leeds has changed a lot in recent years.

But it was only when my old university friends came up to visit from London last weekend that the extent of that change finally dawned on me.

Having not returned to the north for about a year, they were keen to see some of the new city centre sights (the typical places – Leeds Arena, Trinity Leeds, new bars, restaurants, etc).

We didn’t make our annual walk around Ilkley Moor this time as we ended up feeling a bit worse for wear after spending far too much time and money in our old favourite haunt Oporto.

But walking around the city, they started comparing Leeds to London and drew lots of positive similarities, which kind of made me feel proud.

Despite growing up in the Big Smoke, I’ve struggled to see what it has that Leeds hasn’t already got.

I’ve had to sit back and see some of my best friends leave Leeds behind, so it’s nice to know they finally see and appreciate the city in the same way I do.

And it’s exciting to think what might be here next time they come and visit.

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