Wentz, who considers Jay-Z a role model, is always seeking new branding opportunities. While he doubts the world is ready for a Pete Wentz fragrance, he says, "In a weird way, it's one of the things I'd be most interested in doing." But there is a limit. Although Fall Out Boy have done numerous sponsorship deals, Wentz protested publicly when Island Def Jam releasedallegedly without his approvala cut of the "I Don't Care" video to iTunes that featured a few too many adoring close-ups of a Nokia phone. "this is NOT the edit the band approved," he blogged furiously. "sorry to let you down."
Count 7: He's a fame whore. "The tabloids are a lose-lose for me," he says. "I don't need to do image maintenance. My band was playing arenas and had a platinum record, all pre-paparazzi." Simpson is now the focus of attention. "When me and Ashlee are on the red carpet together, I'm like her purse."
Meanwhile, anyone hoping for a Wentz-family reality series can forget it. "I get pitched, like, Newlyweds 2 once a week, dude," he says. "For like, fuck-you money. Move-to-an-island-after-this money. I just can't do it."
Still, he's self-aware enough to realize that his haters will despise him no matter what. "People are like, 'This dude represents eyeliner and girls' jeans and a swoopy haircut and whining on your blog,'" he says. "I'm the flag of that. So when people want to burn the flag, I'm the dude they go after."
There is a bright side, however. "People, when they meet me, are always like, 'Aw, man. I was sure I was gonna hate you,'" he says. "So as long as you aren't, you know, Hitler, they wind up thinking, like, Oh, this dude's okay!"