Suri Cruise turned 6 years old on Wednesday and had her picture taken for the umpteen-millionth time. And looking at this photo made me feel sad for a little girl who's lived her short life predominantly as a paparazzi prize.
Suri Cruise and her mother Katie Holmes are besieged by photographers as they head to a Broadway show in New York for Suri's sixth birthday.
Whether she's wearing lipstick or little heeled shoes or fancy dresses or another sad expression, Suri draws more attention than her mother or father when she's trotted in front of the cameras. Some would blame Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise for subjecting their child to such attention -- mom and daughter helicoptered into New York on Monday, of course. Others blame the ever-present paparazzi for failing to give the poor girl any space -- "Suri! Over your shoulder! Suri!" Seriously, does the kid look that different than she did at 5? And don't forget to blame me. I'm putting the picture in front of your face and asking you to look at it. And, sure, go ahead and blame yourself for clicking on yet another Suri Cruise story. Vicious cycle much?
Who knows? Maybe Suri doesn't mind. Maybe she loves the people with cameras and the constant flashbulbs. We always fail when we try to pretend we know what goes through the minds of celebrities. Half the time we think it would be great to be rich and famous and half the time we smarten up and realize how lousy that would make things.
My own kid turned 5 last month and I've taken my fair share of photos of him. He hates it. I can't imagine if there were 30 of me watching his every move, shouting his name on the way from the preschool to the car. My guess is he would bury his head in his mom's shoulder. As a dad it would make me want to change something about the way I was raising him. And if I was the photographer angling for that picture, it would make me want to shoot something else.
What's your take on Suri and the spotlight? Do you blame her parents or the "press"? Tell us on Facebook.
Look, mom, more photos!
Kurt Schlosser is a senior entertainment producer for msnbc.com and TODAY.com. When not editing the daily Celebrity Sightings slideshow he's looking at pictures of his 5-year-old son.