"But everything about her is fake!" cried my hairdresser this week, as I professed my love for Lady GaGa, "nothing about her is real!"
And that is why I love Lady GaGa.
She is a constantly shifting cipher, refusing to be pegged or pigeon-holed. She does nothing to please society's conventions, and everything to please her audience. She is the ultimate entertainer, creating a world for us to step inside, wide-eyed and wowed. And yet she does not alienate us by being high, exclusive art... she reaches us through pop culture in its most accessible (and hence most powerful) form. She sings about sex, but is not defined by it. The fact that she is a prodigiously talented singer and songwriter almost seems by the by. She is a force of nature.
GaGa defies the media. "LOOK, CHERYL COLE WITH NO MAKEUP GOING TO THE SHOPS!" scream our tabloid front pages. Does GaGa care? No, she's too busy climbing out of a giant egg. She rises so far above the pedestrian constraints of modern female celebrity culture that even a libellous campaign suggesting she was a hermaphrodite couldn't dint her popularity. If anything, it made her even more intriguing.
GaGa, you are a timeless icon, and you are my hero. You make me want to think without limits. You inspire performers, and you inspire women. Long may you reign in our collective pop heart.