Faith Hill still doesn't get it. Neither does the Tennessean.
As anyone with any interest in country music will remember, at the 2006 Country Music Association Awards, Faith Hill fumbled. If you didn't see it, youtube did. Here's the situation: as the audience waited for the announcement of the winner of the Female Vocalist of the Year Award, cameras focused on all five of the finalists. When the name "Carrie Underwood" was read, Faith Hill looked at the camera, mouthed the word "What!" and looked as if she were storming away from the camera.
Over the next several days, while she was being condemned on-line and elsewhere, a number of people rushed to her defense, noting that Faith was clearly joking, that she had a wacky sense of humor in general. While I initially thought she may have been serious, I took her at her word that it was joke. As far as I have seen from my seat in fandom, Faith Hill is a nice enough person with a good number of friends who speak highly of her ethics and behavior. So, I do indeed trust that she was joking.
Here we are, however, many months afterwards, and the Tennessean runs another article on Hill that once again touches on this episode in Hill's life, and once again makes her out to be the victim of those people who don't appreciate a joke. In my mind, this has never been about Hill's intention.
Again, I trust that this was a "joke" on her part. Nonetheless, it was a joke that drew attention on Hill and away from Underwood on the day of Underwood's victory. Indeed, it was a joke that continues to draw attention to Hill. It's not a question of her sense of humor; it's a question of her sense of timing. The lesson that Hill--and her public defense team--needs to take from the episode is that those moments in which a community recognizes achievements are moments in which attention needs to be placed on the winners.
Faith Hill need not apologize for being a bad sport; indeed, she seems to have been more than happy to recognize Underwood's "achievement." Instead, Faith Hill needs to apologize for drawing attention to herself (and continuing to do so) during another person's moment in the spotlight. That is a lesson a good number of us would do well to remember.