Jennifer Aniston Feels Like a Friend

Their relationship may have fizzled, but when Jennifer Aniston, 39, and John Mayer, 30, were together, the two generated plenty of talk, reflected on USA TODAY's Celebrity Heat Index, which ranks stars based on their media exposure.

"Jennifer is someone who people have invested a serious interest in for most of her adult life," says J.D. Heyman, assistant managing editor for "People". "They are interested in who she dates, and they want her to be happy."

Here are the hottest media moments in the actress and rocker's four-month romance:

•May 1. Aniston jumps from No. 20 to No. 1 when she and Mayer are spotted getting cozy poolside at the Mandarin Oriental hotel in Miami in late April. No. 2? Mayer.

•May 15. Aniston and Mayer reach another 1-2 finish over speculation about the state of their relationship and what the two saw in each other. "A lot of people thought he was highly inappropriate for her," says Janice Min, editor of "Us Weekly". "It was such an improbable pairing."

•July 2. Interest in the couple spikes again with reports that the two are considering starting a family. Aniston gets to No. 3 on the index; Mayer, No. 15.

•Aug. 7. Aniston hits No. 1 again after reports surface that she and Mayer would be getting married in the fall. (Mayer reached No. 20.) The interest in Aniston was so dominant on the index that she bested ex-husband Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie when the couple had photos of their newborn twins, Vivienne Marcheline and Knox Leon, in People.

•Aug. 14. Thanks to photos of a solo Mayer in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, and news of the couple's breakup, Aniston lands at No. 3 on the index, behind former Sen. John Edwards and the late Bernie Mac. Mayer hit No. 7.

Despite the couple's split, Aniston's personal life is not likely to fade.

"Jen is still that Rachel Green, the girl next door," Min says of Aniston's "Friends" character. "She has a level of authenticity about her. She is 39, had the highest-profile marriage in Hollywood fall apart, and people will forever root for her until she has her happily-ever-after."

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