Age and Talent on 'American Idol'by David Bloomberg -- 07/10/2002
Well, my opinion of EJay Day just went down a notch.
TV Guide had a news item on American Idol contestant Delano Cagnolatti being kicked off of the show (and out of the contest) just before the third week of voting because he had falsified his age. As you may recall, the producers found out he was really 29, not 23 as he’d earlier claimed. The show only allowed contestants between the ages of 16 and 24, because obviously anybody older than that cannot sing – just like overweight people or people who don’t have the right “look” can’t sing.
TV Guide provides the full picture of how he was discovered – and it was a major gaffe on his own part. It seems Cagnolatti had doctored up all of the documents he’d given the American Idol folks, including providing a fake Social Security number. But then he turned around and asked to sing, for his semi-final song, something of his own creation. The show’s producers had to verify that he had, indeed, written it, and when they tried to do so they found a different Social Security number on file with the company that had published the song. Whoops! After a little detective work, they confronted Cagnolatti (on camera, of course) and we saw the result. Goodbye, Delano; hello EJay.
But why has my opinion of EJay dropped? Because he is quoted in the article as saying, “If you were desperate and didn’t believe in yourself you might do something like that.”
Excuse me? What does being desperate or not believing in yourself have to do with anything? Cagnolatti wanted to prove he could sing. Many people believe the age restrictions placed on contestants by American Idol are ridiculous, and RealityNewsOnline has found that Cagnolatti is not the only contestant to have lied about his age in order to get in (though there is no indication that this applies to any of the contestants still in the competition). Why Day, who only is in the finals because Cagnolatti was booted, would take the opportunity he has been given and use it to slam Cagnolatti is a mystery to me.
Perhaps we should chalk it up to his own young age.
David Bloomberg is the Editor of RealityNewsOnline, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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