November 13th, 2009
09:13 PM ET

Why we love Taylor Swift

From the MTV Video Music Awards to "Saturday Night Live" to the CMA Awards, Taylor Swift is on top of the world, and America absolutely loves her. What makes Taylor Swift so loveable? How has she captured our hearts and escaped the pitfalls that have faced those like Britney Spears and Miley Cyrus? Maybe it is because under all of the hair and makeup, the glitz and the glamour, Taylor Swift is still just a normal 19-year-old girl. There aren’t any pretenses, there aren’t any games — there certainly aren’t any ridiculous costumes and pole dances, there’s just a girl and her guitar.

Ever since she burst onto the scene with her breakout single in 2006, Taylor has been a fixture on the Hollywood scene, appearing on magazine covers and selling out concerts. Her first single, “Tim McGraw,” was a hit and she never looked back.

Taylor doesn’t wear booty shorts and she doesn’t make inappropriate music videos — actually it is quite the opposite. She isn’t afraid to look bad or to make fun of herself. In the video for “You Belong with Me,” she's living the life of most teenagers: sitting at home in her room, looking awkward, feeling self-conscious, and singing into a hairbrush. At the end of the video (spoiler alert!), she shows up at the school dance in a long, very age-appropriate gown, having undergone the prerequisite fairy tale makeover that every gawky teenager dreams of.

We love Taylor because she posts fun YouTube videos of herself getting nominated for awards, so we can share the moment with her. It’s rare that celebrities let fans have as much access to them as Taylor does. She might be one of the most internet-savvy stars out there — communicating with fans via Twitter, Facebook and MySpace, in addition to her own website.

It’s not just that she communicates with her fans that make Taylor so unique; it’s the way that she does it that makes her so personable. Take this gem from her Facebook page:

 I'm extremely tall. Like, I'm that really tall person that is blocking your view at a concert. On behalf of all of us, we're sorry.

As a whole, I don’t think we as fans are accustomed to our celebrities being so self deprecating, so I was especially shocked to see this quote from her — right under her picture!

I'm not a big deal. At all.

Well Taylor, I beg to differ. I think you are a very big deal. As someone a bit older than you, I still look up to you —I think you are an awesome role model. I wish that when I was younger, I had someone like you to look up to, because the people I read about in magazines weren’t exactly great examples of how to exist in Hollywood and come out as a normal person. Taylor, you are doing a great job.

On Wednesday night, when I watched Taylor win Entertainer of the Year at the CMAs, as her dad watched her with tears in his eyes, I couldn’t help but tear up myself. For all of the celebrities who go out and party, all of the starlets who pile into cars without underwear, all of the ones who drink and drive, its nice to finally see one of the “good girls” get an award.

And really, who can resist loving a girl who ends one of the best nights of her life with a tweet like this:

taylorswift13: Just wrapped up a cereal party with my mom and dad at the kitchen table. What a night.

November 11th, 2009
06:32 PM ET

John Travolta talks family, loss with Ellen

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John Travolta appeared on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” today, thanking fans for their support during the past few months and bringing along a special guest: his daughter Ella Bleu! John said he was “holding back the tears” while talking about working with his wife, Kelly Preston, and Ella on his new film, “Old Dogs.” 

This was Ella’s very first TV talk show interview, and she stole the show from her famous dad when Ellen asked her if it was hard to watch herself up on screen. Ella said, “Well, kind of, but it was really fun to see me… I was like 'Yes! Not only just my parents but it’s me up there too.'” What do you expect with two famous folks?

John also took the time to address his fans after the death of his son ten months ago: “I just want to take one moment to thank each and every one of you throughout this country, throughout the world for all your support and all your love for our family. Thank you very much.” Jett died in the Bahamas in January after suffering a seizure.

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