Sunday, January 7, 2007

Two Tales of Clay Aiken, Three Years Apart

Below you will find two different accounts of what Clay Aiken is like from people who knew him before he became famous. Although years apart, the two stories tell remarkably similar tales.

Far too similar to be mere coincidence.

They state what many reasonable, thinking people have come to realize. Clay Aiken is a pissy diva and always has been.

First from 2003:

Golly, leave the boards for just a few hours...As to my own personal experiences with Clayton, pre-AI, let me preface by just saying that by no means do i think he is a bad person. One would be hard-pressed to find any performer without an embarrasing, dark and/or "evil" side. In fact, many celebrities almost seem to relish in their less than shining moments.So, I certainly don't care about any and every unseemly thing Clay may have done in the past. He is certainly entitled to his mistakes. It's just that part of the appeal he has, and one that has been trumpeted and used as a marketing tool, is the idea that Clay is some sort of squeaky-clean role-model, who can do no wrong.Now, there are those of us who knew him back when he still went by the name Clayton Grissom, and he was polarizing people even then. I worked with him on at least three occasions on theatrical projects, which are by their very nature - collaborations, (people working together for a final project). Clayton suffered from an inability to shut up, listen and learn. He knew better than everyone else. He would engage in the cardinal sin of "directing" others in the productions, or at least trying to. He was arrogant, snarky, and was perceived by some as a bit of a jerk.Not the kind of jerk you hate, but the kind that you just try to avoid. I know of at least one instance where he upset a younger girl with his "bitter sarcasm", but most of the time his gossipy and hurtful comments were made behind others backs. The more mature people in the cast took anything he said with a grain of salt. I'm sure there are many people who don't appreciate being looked down upon from on high. Basically, in my opinion, he just wasn't a pleasant person to be around at the time.Part of it was no doubt due to some sort of insecurity problems he may have been dealing with, and part of it is natural for many guys in their teens and twentys who are still figuring things out. On reflection, I feel he was very immature for his age, still apt to throw a temper tantrum if things weren't going his way. (I witnessed at least one such instance). I believe he was a freshman in high school at the time.Do I feel he should be crucified for past transgressions? Absolutely not. He should be allowed to be imperfect like everyone else is. I just find it astonishing that he would want to take on the mantle of "boy-next-door, All-American kid, squeaky-clean role model". That's not the guy I knew, and apparently even as late as last year, he was still having trouble getting cast in productions, as he was seen as "difficult to work with".But he's grown up! He's changed! I can hear the responses already. To that, let me just say that perhaps he has, but since so much of what bothered me about him in the past was the superior attitude and expression that he was so much better than everybody else, to hear certain areas of the media pontificate on his "divineness" rubs me the wrong way. Probably also explains why he gets so much flack from certain other areas of the media. I'm sure a lot of people don't like it when someone acts that way.I've heard certain stories about his experimenting back in Charlotte, but lacking an actual source, its really only second-hand information. Whether he is or not, I would not doubt that he has some problems with intimacy. I'm sure a psychiatrist would have a field day delving into his psyche.It does bother me that the term "gay" and "ugly" gets used so often in relation to Clay as an insult. It's a rather weak insult, and deals with things out of his control, so its kinda unfair. (See, I'll stick up for the guy when he's been wronged). Now, glory-note-holding-megalomaniac I'd have no problem with! LOLAnd for the record... I may have shared a dressing room or two with him, but would never have had any interest in finding out what he smelled like...Edited to remove possible generalizations, as tis better to err on the side of caution. Besides if Shack closes down the thread, where could one go for Clay-snark!

This post has been edited by Adric on Dec 1, 2003 @ 5:14 pm

And this from 2006:

Here's the thing that amuses me. I knew Clay Aiken when he himself was actually 15, and I was struck by just how immature he was. He wasn't cast in a theatre role which he obviously felt he was right for, so he ended up in the chorus. After all, when he auditioned he said he would be willing to take any role, and while he may have been disappointed in not getting one of the lead roles, it was astounding how much of a grudge he seemed to carry.He was constantly whining, putting down the guy who got the role he wanted, making "snarky" comments about others in the cast, (one was even to the face of a 12-year-old girl, who was reduced to tears on one occasion, aside from that, he reserved his painful put-downs behind his fellow cast members backs.) He carried a huge superiority complex, thought he was too good for the show, and certainly didn't believe in teamwork. When one of the tech crew, who had grown increasingly weary of Clay's immature antics, decided to hide his stuffed Sylvester cat from out of his dressing room, Clay broke down and threw a temper tantrum. He was "only" 15-years of age at the time, but he acted like a spoiled brat of 7.Needless to say, his frustration over not being cast in the next two shows he auditoned for was in no small part due to him being a difficult person to work with. No one wanted to be around his negative energy, and his bitterness.I had hoped he had outgrown his "issues", but these continuing stories of his "diva"ish attitude doesn't inspire me with any confidence.Clay's fans, those few he has left, should be willing to at least acknowledge that Clay at 15 was every bit as repulsive as they claim Joshua is. If this viewpoint is all new to you, then understand that his "memoirs" conveniently ignored certain actions on his part that were less than endearing.His sore attitude did him no favors.

Posted at 2:18PM on Dec 30th 2006 by Rachel from Raleigh0 stars-- 14