Dolly Parton: “I keep dreaming in a corner! But I can’t stop now.”
If each person carried an iPod, then Dolly Parton would always be on each of them. Indeed, in an age when heated arguments begin over such trivial things as pizza toppings, Parton is someone we can all appreciate.
How is it possible?
Perhaps this is Parton’s generous spirit. We know – or firmly believe – that it supports us, individually and collectively. Whether she wins awards or funds immunization research and fundraising for flood victims, Parton is a queen who rivals that of England, Queen Elizabeth.
Parton is also (duh) one of the People Magazine’s People of the Year and as such recently spoke with the media about a number of things, from her nature to her career as a whole.
“I keep dreaming about myself in a corner! Parton said People, with a laugh. “But I can’t stop now. I’ve learned that you can’t just say, “Oh, my dream has come true and I’m going. No, you have to show that you are grateful and that you are not going to leave everything in the hands of other people.
She added, “I’m a little addicted to the feeling of giving. Knowing that I am doing something good for someone else.
Parton, however, said she wasn’t about the shine that can come with good deeds. Instead, she doesn’t really want the recognition, she explained.
“I have to honestly tell you that I was a little skeptical of being put on the cover as one of the People of the Year,” she said. “Because it’s a lot of pressure. But, yeah, it’s like, I’m not all that. I’m happy to stand up for enough things where I’m not worse no one in the world.
Parton, 75, added, “But I don’t want to be worshiped because there is a scripture in my Bible that talks about idol worship. And I see that happening all the time with movie stars and these celebrities. People literally worship them more than they worship God. And I just… I cringed my teeth sometimes.
“But,” Parton said, “if I can lead by example, then that’s great.”
Parton, which is worth over half a billion dollars, also owns a number of significant businesses, from production companies to Dollywood theme parks. It’s a great responsibility, but one that she appreciates head-on.
“I’m a good boss, I think,” Parton told the outlet. “I try to rule with love and compassion. But also, there’s a thin line that says, “She’s not child’s play.” I am a fair and honest person. I like to be as friendly as possible and love the people who work with me and I love them to love me.
She added, “I know we use each other and when it’s time for them to move on, they can. But I want to be the kind of person, if they need to come talk to me, they can almost like it as a friend and then we’ll get down to business. I want no one to be afraid to come to me.
“Some people, I have to kick their ass back and forth because some people just won’t listen. And then you have your creative vampires. You have your energy vampires and you have people who are just going to eat you alive.
For Parton, it’s about doing a good job.
“A creative vampire is someone who takes your ideas and claims them as his own, he takes them and then disperses them,” she said. “There’s this old adage, ‘There is no limit to what can be done if it doesn’t matter who gets the credit,’ and there is some truth to that. But that’s the hardest part if someone takes your idea.
She added, “I have all kinds of businesses, like Dollywood. It was my idea to have Dollywood, to have a theme park, but I knew I didn’t know anything about management, but I knew I would find people. So I still do that, though, with anything. I hire people. I see what I need and want, but I know I can’t do it all on my own.
Photo by Jon Kopaloff / Getty Images