Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Congratulations to Mary J. Blige...

for managing to wear the tightest denim of all time.

Brought to you by the BET Awards....brought to you by Red Lobster.

Black Folks' Insistence on Pain Music

I'm watching this documentary on PBS called "The Blues" .

And, of course, I should be very much asleep...

And this is far from the first time I've watched it (I'm ancient now, so I am constantly finding new/additional meaning in places I've already looked).

- Oh, wait, quick aside - it just occurred to me that Keb' Mo' must be short for Kevin Moore. I was close, it's Kelvin Moore -

Anyway, I'm watching these Old Black Men make these universally true statements through the silk and canvas of their music... and one of them makes the point that the blues was therapeutic when they weren't allowed a therapy - that when they were working and sang about their woman troubles, they could really be talking about how their employer was treating them wrong. The genius of it being that he/she was probably standing right there, possibly enjoying it while they did it.

Yes, yes, much like slave spirituals were codes. I know you know.

But that's not the point.

I was sitting there watching, thinking about how this music was a way to express pain, it was relief, a healer. I began to think about how young people here in NYC would probably see this and laugh, tease it for being "country".

I remember once in undergrad, we were listening to music and I was doing some little shuffle or another which was referred to by someone as "a slave man dance". Maybe it's where I grew up, but I don't distance myself from my relation to the slavery/slave experience. I don't like when people use as a negative modifier. To me it insinuates an attempt to deny...

Again. Digression. Anyway...

I don't think that they would look at these men and see that, in their youth, they were the Kool-Moes, Ice Cubes, Rakims, B.I.Gs, Lupe Fiascos of their day.

Or maybe they would...

Well, I was thinking about the blues and how it was pain music. Then I thought about hip-hop, and that it is pain music. Of course, this is not explicitly true, but even in a lot of what would celebration/party music of either type, you could find pain.

Blues and hip-hop are both ways of getting it out. Getting pain out is important. You sneeze for a reason. Sores run for a reason. You cry for a reason. What is not good for you must get out of you so that it might not prove detrimental.

So, why do we still need to? After all this time, why do we still have pain that needs to be expressed?

I think it may be because we DON'T have a way to express that pain. Because every time that we find a way to express it that is unique to us,

it becomes popular.

It becomes something to be performed.

It becomes something to be sold.

The pain becomes a source of enjoyment. Not joy expressed through pain, but pain as a source of enjoyment, entertainment, interest....

Perhaps these therapies have become confused. Or corrupted. Or abused. Like getting addicted to morphine.

Or codeine.

Perhaps we still have pain because we've never had a chance, through one of these forms of therapy to get it all out -

- before it shows up on a chart.

And we complain about people taking our pain from us and selling it,

and we spend a great deal of time trying to package our pain and sell it,

so somebody who doesn't have their own pain can dance to it.

Maybe we've become convinced that we need pain in order to survive.


4:30a. Time for a nap.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Six Flags, Your naps & U

Perhaps I am again on the late bus, never-the-less...

Read this here

Racism? Perhaps not.

Methinks, however, that me and my pelo will go to Coney Island this summer instead...

Saturday, June 24, 2006

I feel destined to suck

I was supposed to go to a reading today. It happened at 4:30pm.

I laid down at about 4-4:30 this morning after setting the alarm for 8.

I woke up at 8 and re-set the alarm for 10 to get a couple more hours.

I think I remember a certain cartoon being on at 10 and decided to lay there for a couple more hours.

I woke up again later feeling like it was about noon and noticed that the same cartoon was on.

I turned over and looked at the clock. It was 4:34p.

I was invited to this reading by an actor who got me seen by the director of a theater that I've wanted to work with.

I consistently miss opporunities to meet people who are doin things in the city.

I fell like an ass.

Perhaps that's because I'm an ass...

Friday, June 23, 2006

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Wow......cheney/bush portrait

There are things you'll see in NYC you just won't in any other place. Here is the cover for this week's edition of the largest alternative paper in the States, the Village Voice.

If you'd like a copy of this issue, I'll send you one. But you have to pay shipping...

(I was hoping they used a unique link for each week's cover, but they don't so we have to go back to my crummy pic for now...but you get the necessary info - Ed.)

Monday, June 19, 2006

My Lai

If you're of the generations who's awareness of Vietnam exists mostly or purely through history books and Born Fourth of July, you might consider checking the link below.

I've heard several times about the massacres by US troops on civilians that supposedly took place, but I'd never really read anything about them or realized that there was actual pictorial documentation of them.

...And, though this is being posted as we are in the midst of (more) misconduct by US troops in Iraq, that is not what leads me to post this.

It's just that feel it's important to be aware of history...some events more so than others.

The link leads to a recollection of the event by a helicopter pilot credited with saving lives that day, but it is a full site on the incident. Do look around.

And do remember that pure objectivity is a hard thing to come by. Take what you see for what it is. Make your judgment. Move on:

My Lai

Thursday, June 15, 2006

The Last 100

Below are the locations of the last 100 visits to el O-Ficial by city as of the publish date of this post:

32 Trenton New Jersey United States United States
drill down

26 Houston Texas United States United States

7 New Orleans Louisiana United States United States

5 Los Angeles California United States United States

4 Brooklyn New York United States United States

2 Atlanta Georgia United States United States

1 Naples Florida United States United States

1 New York New York United States United States

1 Mountain View California United States United States

1 Tallahassee Florida United States United States

1 Toronto Ontario Canada

New Jersey?

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Pee Wee!!!

Pee Wee's Playhouse comes back to TV, July 20th!

They ain't paying me, so I ain't sayin' which channel. You gotta look
and find that out for yourself.

(Hint: if you're reading this, you can easily find out. Don't fear your

Wednesday, June 07, 2006


I just asked somebody why women like manthighs. She said, "thighs are
the parenthes(e)s to what we really want".



(michael evans fist)

Saturday, June 03, 2006

During tonight's thundershower

From a late/early chat session:

(other person): DAG who just cracked heaven open?
(me): Somebody was diggin' for the truth and hit a water main.

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