The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.


By Margaret Hicks in Arts & Entertainment on Mar 26, 2007 4:43PM

Thesecret3_26_07.jpgChicagoist has a new fun game. It’s called “get people all riled up”. All we do is sit down over a beer, coffee or fifteen Jamison shots and say the two most electrified words in the English language, “The Secret”. It's way fun to watch proponents of “The Secret” battle it out with the militant disbelievers and just sit back and let ‘er rip.

Say what you will about "The Secret", its success is something that cannot be denied. After the Oprah show that launched it worldwide, Simon & Schuster has placed the biggest re-order in its history for an additional two million copies. The latest news is that both Warner Brothers and CBS are in talks to create a new daytime talk show related to “The Secret”. Oprah, watch your back; you might not be the only one making us feel badly because we can’t reach the level of success that you claim is so easy.

Now, we’ll be honest. We watched “The Secret”. We watched because we wanted to know what everyone was talking about, and we wanted to watch it first before we started spouting off. We also happen to believe in some if it. Our mother has told us our whole life that “life rewards action” and we have found that to be true. We like to think that karma is real and know in our hearts that good begets good and bad begets bad. We were looking for more from “The Secret” however. We’re not sure what we were expecting but what we got was a really well produced infomercial. Some of it was inspiring if you let yourself get caught up in it, but that inspiration ends when the very heavy materialistic side sets in. All of these people-in-the-know are literally telling you that you can have that diamond necklace, that bike or that new car if you believe strongly enough. We were shocked by how focused the video was on getting material things rather than personal acceptance. Also, the video is way too long. There came a point about an hour in when we were visualizing the ending of this damn thing and wishing with all our heart that it was over. The heart of “The Secret” is to do what “feels good”. Well…great, what if we think taking meth while sitting naked in Daley Plaza feels good? And also, that advice is just way too simple for people battling with very real depression and very real health problems.

On the other side of the issue are the people that are so angry, so mad, so infuriated that they’re yelling chants of “CULT!” and “RELIGION” and “SCIENTOLOGY!” We can’t help but wonder if some of these people’s indignation is rooted in jealousy. To credit “The Secret”, religion is not discussed in this video, not even under the guise of “whatever you want to call your God” like Oprah does. The video is not about spirituality or God or religion. So what if this woman is making hand over fist utilizing some of the biggest names in self-help? So what if there are lonely housewives all over the land envisioning themselves as thin and beautiful wearing diamond tennis bracelets? It’s no different than making yourself thin by eating only meat or believing men are from Mars and women are from Venus. Chicagoist can’t remember the last time people were so angry over a self-help book.

So in the name of experimentation, Chicagoist is going to give it a try. We’ve never tried the way of “The Secret”, maybe it works? And this whole time we’ve been sitting here working our butts off to make it till next week, maybe all we had to do was imagine our wealth and happiness; believe it and it will arrive. We’ll never know till we try. Now, who wants to give us a million dollars? Anyone?