Tales from the Bishop: Moments of Clarity

Suggested Listening for this Column: #41 by DMB

1. Waking up

When you’re in a dream, it’s hard to wake up.
You cling to it. You want it to go on forever. I had a dream like that. That dream has been the first twenty years of my life. It’s a conceited, stupid dream, full of bald-face falsehoods, arrogance, and debauchery. It’s a pleasant dream, but a dream that has to end.
When I was younger, I was a Christian. I’ll make no claims to it now, as much as I’d like to. In my young age, I learned of sins. There were seven of them. Wrath, Lust, Sloth, Gluttony, Pride, Greed, and Envy. I was aware, with the passing of a few years, that I had fallen to a couple of these… Lust and Gluttony, definitely. That’s just how it goes. But I swore the others weren’t there. Not on this soul. So I grew a little older. Looked around a little more. Something happened… and suddenly I was angry and hurt. I grew tired. And I knew then that I had fallen into the trap of Wrath, and Pride, and Sloth. So there. It’s not terrible. Everybody makes mistakes. “Hell,” I said, “I’m better than most of these people.”
So I took a trip to Texas. It wowed me. The smell of money was in the air, and the happiness it could buy. I could go for that. I could go for a house full of luxuries and beautiful things. I needed nothing else. I fell into the trap of my own Greed then. I acknowledged it. Who needs anything when you have money? With money, you can have everything you want. You can make up for all the lonely nights, the dark mornings in the shower waiting to go to school. With money, you could live! And I have the talent, I told myself. I’m better than this state I live in, better than the people I surround me. I have nobody to envy. Nobody. Nothing. Damn everything else.
And then, this evening, I went to a university gallery and saw a few works of art by a friend of mine. I felt my spirits drop. With no power-hungry motive, no greed, no force at all, she had invented amazing things. Delightful pictures made for no reason other than the artist wanted them to be made. I knew that feeling that was in my heart at that moment. It was the realization that I had lost myself, and replaced the innocent thing I once was with some power-hungry, lusting, alchoholic ghoul. At that moment, I didn’t know if I wanted to blow my brains out or praise whatever’s out there. I didn neither, really. I just stood, their, quietly, awake for the first time in years.

2. Getting moving.

I remember something this friend had done for me, a long time ago. She had tried to teach me to respect myself. I took this lesson and completely ignored it. I became a living cartoon. I was always full of one-liners and snide comments. I was hurtful on more than one occasion. And it felt good. It was just like a sophopia (I honestly have no idea how to spell that word)… so delicious, but still empty. And when I ran out of people to make a fool of, I could turn back on myself. It was all about me, really. I didn’t have to stick up for anybody. In fact, on more than one occassion, I made it so that somebody else had to stick up for somebody, just to stop me. But it felt good, man. I felt powerful for once. I could build myself up on others. I wasn’t myself anymore, but who liked that guy? He wasn’t anything. This new guy was awesome, though. He flipped off people when they honked at him as he crossed the streets. He got into fights. He swore. He drank. He was me. I made him. I can’t try to victimize myself by saying that this personality is something seperate from myself. It was me, just older and ‘wiser’ in the ways of the world.
Oh, which isn’t to say it was all roses. I got hurt now and then. I got so down it seemed I couldn’t get back up. I got so angry I contemplated terrible things. Until a few hours ago, I felt I was justified.
Then, looking into these brushstrokes and penstrokes, I realized that there was no justification. No reason for any of the lies, the backstabbing, the hate. Everyone is born innocent. We make ourselves guilty. I could create things just as good as this, someday perhaps… but I had traded it away for hurt feelings and ill will.

3. Getting Done.

So, from now on, just call me Bryan. It’s a name I used to hate, but it’s who I am. I’m not some jive-talking guy, or some raving, anger-spewing lunatic. I’m something better than that today. Maybe I won’t be one tomorrow, but as for today…

Sin 3: Saying "Nice Guys Finish Last"

You knew it was coming.

There’s this article floating around on the internet, called “Nice guys finish last.” It was written by a heartbroken male virgin to decry the horrible injustice somebody had done him when they fucked somebody else besides him. But that’s beside the point, okay? Let’s take apart this radically stupid saying, starting at the back and moving up.


First off, let’s be honest with ourselves. What do you people (and yes, I’m calling people who consider themselves “nice guys” you people. So?) think ‘finishing’ is? There’s no finishing. You think you’ll be spirited away to some magical land of pixies and unicorns when you meet the right girl? No! You’ll go out for a while, then you’ll bang each other when the time is right, then she’ll start bitching about how you don’t spend enough time with her, then you’ll either break up with her or make a HUGE FUCKING MISTAKE and marry her. And once married…no, quiet down, no pixies. You can look forward to A. dying broken and spiritless, under control of a horrible beast that takes three hours to ‘get ready’ or B. A heartbreaking divorce, alimony, palimony, zingy zongy zalimony.

And boys, “Finishing Last” has nothing to do with marriage anyway in your eyes. Because you had dreams of love once, but then that girl you liked fucked the bejeezus out of some dude. That dude wasn’t you. You weren’t first. Hell, you weren’t even second. And you’re a nice guy, right? You listen to her problems, right? You know why she’s telling you those things? Because, you stupid motherfucker, she has no goddamn interest in you. You have no genitals in her eyes. She probably doesn’t even like you. And who can blame her? You’re a fucking wierdo.

“Finishing Last”…. FUCKING LAST! Get it right.

“Nice Guys”…Pretensiousness is bliss.

I’ve gone on in length about “Nice Guys”, but I’m going to again. You know what a nice guy is? A nice guy is somebody who breaks both legs saving a box of puppies from a four-alarm fire. Have you done that? No. Because you suck. And even if you tried, the puppies would probably bite you.

See, if you need to know why you have all these well-deserved problems, it’s because of this. You, my friend, in all your heavy-breathing, love-lorn moments, never picked up on a very simple fact: Women hate themselves. They do! Why do you think they buy magazines full of pictures of other women who look better than they do? To torture themselves. “Oh, my ass is too small… oh, my nose is off-center…” and when you like them… they get this feeling. “He likes me, and I’m inadequate. He must be deranged.” What you do is find somebody who’s really into you, and let THEM do the work. It’s not your job to be romantic and loving. In fact, if you are, the woman will probably tell you all her problems, because she’ll feel completely at ease with you. Because no straight guy would act so stupid around a woman…

You wonder why the woman stays with the guy who treats her like shit? The guy who ignores her, beats her, embarasses her in public, and sits around the house all day drinking beer and watching football? Because many women out there are like gerbils. They get on that wheel and just start spinnin’, thinkin’ they’re gonna end up somewhere, when the thing they are on has only one function… to spin them around. There’s plenty more in the gerbil cage. A water bottle, cool multicolored tubes, other gerbils… but the gerbil spins, because it’s stupid like that.

Anyway, back on this tangent. “Nice Guys”…. or somebody who would call himself a nice guy… have to be the most childish human beings that aren’t playing with Duplo. It’s not even sour grapes, to say that stupid phrase. Instead, you are the sour grapes. “I’m too good, I guess, so I finished last.” You know why you finished last? Because you’re unattractive, poor, wierd, and probably have a really horrible personality, and the girl could do better. Plus, finishing first requires you to think about somebody other than your fucking self. And no, I didn’t use ‘fucking’ gratuitously there…

If you want to be a “Nice Guy”, more power to you. Have fun staying at home alone Saturday night, talking to your online girlfriend from Sarasota. And keep in mind my revised formula that wipes all the euphemistic bullshit…


Now go get a job. And to the guy who wrote that article about “Nice Guys”… delete it, it’s entirely pathetic. Instead, be a real nice guy. Save kittens from wheat threshers. Coach little league. Be a priest. Wait, scratch that last one. I don’t want to hear an article about how “Nice Priests Grope Last”.

…..anywho, my venom is drying out, so I’m going to take leave of you now. Enjoy this column chilled with a cool Nestea and some roasted almonds. But that’s really pointless to tell you, because as I’m sure you’ve noticed, the column is completely fuckin’ over.

Sin 2: Money is the root of being pissed off.


Good day sirs, Bryan Bishop here with his weekly bullheaded, mean-spirited column. Ready for some more 200 proof cynisism, with no chaser? Good, because here it comes.

Sin 2: Owing money to a friend.

You know, I hate busting people out. It’s awful! I hate saying somebody’s name and exposing them as the sniffling, pathetic cheapskate they are. But I got this friend, by the name of Chris, who is a sinner. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this boy has broken commandment #2: Thou shalt not owe a friend money. A nice tag for this one should also be “thou shalt not lend money to a friend”. Because friends are like that, aren’t they? “Aw, I’ll pay you back. Oh, you dont’ have to worry.” And you can’t get harsh with them. Unless, of course, you’re a dickhead like yours truly.

But I digress. Now, the story.

It was fall of October, and I was a miserable bastard. I had one friend who was a Zoloft-snorting asshole, and another friend who was great, save for his utter lack of drive. So me and said friend, CHRISTOPHER ADAM SHUTTER, are hanging out, and he’s lamenting the fact his Zoloft-hoochie roomate is throwing him out. So he asks for money.

I should have looked into the situation a little right then. Here was a guy who couldn’t get a job… couldn’t? I’m sorry, couldn’t be bothered to get off his ass to find a job. And I’m going to give him money? How much money, Bryan?

100 bucks.

I give it to him to pay his rent. And then he swiftly leaves anyway, with my money. I ask when I can get it back.

“Well, uh, I gotta pay back my parents, and then Marty, and then Jason, then you.”

What? That’s not how it works. You have my money, and when I ask for it, you better have it or better have something worth 100 dollars to give to me.

So, still clinging to my ‘nice guy’ mentality, I let off 25 bucks, so I can get my money back. Nothing. Spring goes by. Summer. He lives at home, rent free, and has a job delivering pizzas. Fall comes. Still no money. I cut it down to sixty dollars, just wanting my money. Then I invite him over for a bender.

…and he has a brand new hat with earflaps, an a 150 dollar SKS illegal Serbian rifle to show off.

…yes, there was an axe handy. No, I didn’t use it. Mainly because of the rifle.

So I’m thinking, “Okay, okay, one slip up, no big deal.” Wednesday, I go over to his house, and he shows me his massive DVD collection.

Chris: At one point, I was buying a DVD every day!

Me: What about my money?

Chris: Oh dude, I had a car payment.

…worthless asshole.

This man is a sinner, and in two months, if I don’t have my money, he’s going to be a sinner in small claims court. If he doesn’t have the money, I’ll just ask for one thing: the trigger for that rifle, and a trip to the bathroom.



Why did ABC stop using John Tesh’s NBA on NBC theme, and turn to something by suck artist extrevant Justin Timberlake? And why am I seeing a cartoon of this sorry individual on my TV, trying to get me to go to McDonalds? And why is it that Marvin Gaye, John Lennon, Tupac, and Jam Master J are dead, and nobody’s taking shots at Timberlake or Nelly? Explain this to me, okay? Geez, you pop one attractive girl’s cherry and the whole world wants your autograph.


This guy I hate. You know him. He’s the fat, gravy guzzling wanker who first came into our consiousness singing “How do you like me now?” Wow! A country musician who doesn’t adhere to the norm! Rad! But wait… something bad happened. So he’s singing, and…

“We’ll put our foot in your ass/courtesy of the Red, White, and Blue.”

“We got too many gangsters doin’ dirty deeds…”

“…Take all them bad boys, hang them high in a tree”

…I really hate this asshole. Untalented, childish, simpleton banter, geared to connect with the lowest common denomenator. And it sucks to listen to, also! This guy isn’t some fun-loving guy. He’s a racist son of a bitch! And he pays country music, to boot. Fuck him, and fuck everybody like him.

…sorry about that. Arkansas sucks, and sometimes the cynisism is hard to break. But next week, never fear, for I will be back to talk a little more to you, and fill your heads with four-letter words and rubbish. Ta!

Tales From the Bishop: Sin 1.


Yup, Bryan Bishop here, and he’s ready to offend people. Let’s see, goin’ down the sin list…. first one… oh.

1. Treating Women with (undue) Respect.

Heh heh. Angry? Good. Some of you are nodding your heads, and some of you are seething…. saying things like…


Seriously, go to hell, allright? There’s nothing angelic about anybody. Just because they got long hair and hoots doesn’t mean you have to play right into the roadblock. First off, let’s dissect that phrase.


-meaning rare and worth something. I got outside, and I see a lot of women. They ain’t rare. And as for ‘worth something’… chances are, they’re gonna cost you more than you’ll get out of the relationship. People who are ‘worth something’ don’t make a scrawny geek like Justin Timberlake a cultural icon. People who are ‘worth something’ don’t talk to me for twenty minutes about how “scary” The Texas Chainsaw Massacre was. It wasn’t scary. It was stupid. Much like someone who would find it scary.


So what’s your interest in them, then? Quoting scripture?

Why this isn’t sexist.

I know what you’re saying right now. “This Bishop guy’s a male chauvanist pig! Fat, too!”

Allright, listen. Doing the opposite of what I’m saying would be sexist, because you’d be cheapening…well, you. When you put women on a pedestal, you degrade males, and vice versa. So in my mind, nobody goes on a pedestal. In fact, what the fuck are all these pedestals doing sitting around? Get them out of here. We’re all equal, nobody’s a precious angel. Ugh… what kind of dickhead says that, anyway?

Guys, women are just the same as you, and Gals… have pity on the dorks who can’t fathom the fact that you don’t sprout wings and ascend to heaven after work.

All I’m saying is to treat each other equally. If somebody’s doin’ somebody a favor by being in the relationship… then don’t bother with it.


My first weekly award goes to Micheal Jackson, the guy who underwent the most frightening change since Lon Chaney Jr. in “The Wolfman” From cute kid in the Jackson Five to pop superstar (and a damn good one) to a pale soft rock psuedo star to the souless vampire pedophile he is now. And you know what? As undeserving as Justin Timberlake is to be compared to Jackson, I like it. Say he’s the next Micheal Jackson more often. Maybe he’ll follow the same path, and I can laugh with glee at his stupid expression in his mug shot.

Jeez, what a worthless asshole. At least “The Jackson Five” made some good songs, with instruments. Timberlakes “Launch Pad” seems to have been already forgotten, and likely so. I just hope Alicia Keyes, Nelly Futardo, Nelly, DMX, Ja Rule, Fifty Cent, Project Patt, and Christina Aquilera all follow suit and dissappear in the same manner, along with their vacuous lyrics, canned beats, and excruciatingly corporate style. And tell them to take their choreographed dance videos, hair gel, “Bentleys” (fucking ugly car), attitudes, drum machines, fake hood stories, thongs, hair streaks, watches, and gold teeth with them. Leave room for real artists, who can provoke emotions besides boredom, irritation, and disgust. And learn to make an interesting video, or get the fuck off of my TV! How is it that in the 80’s, every video had an idea, told a story, and was generally bad ass? “Take on Me’ had a cool video. The guys in”Come on Eileen” weren’t trying to look cool… they were staying true to the spirit of their song. And if the spirit of your song is flashing your ill-gotten jewelry in my face, keep it to your fucking self. Hype Williams should be drug out in the street and shot.

…allright, I’ve angered the MTV set and women. So looks like I just have to offend old men, and I’ll have it made. Until next time… keep on truckin’.

Tales from the Bishop…4?

In Arkansas, there is a little town you might have heard of. It’s kind of off-the-map, but if you look for it, you will be rewarded by what you find. This town’s name is Conway, population 40,000.
Conway is in the middle of Arkansas. It’s weather changes often, from rainy to sunny. Most months of the year, it’s hot, but it does snow often, also.
Like most of Arkansas, Conway is rather boring. If you look hard enough, you can find things to do. For example, you can bowl here. You can’t drink and bowl, but you can bowl. Which is fun, I guess. We also have parties. These are always put to a quick end by our crack local police force. Here lives Bryan Bishop. Here lives he.
What began as an English draft of my Spanish composition has suddenly become my column. Hoo-fuckin’-ray.
Allright, folks, as you might have noticed, I’ve-a been busy lately, doin’ shit, and because of that, no columns for a while. No biggie. I’m sure you have stuff to do also, and it gets in the way of writin’ columns nobody reads. Well, congrats. I found the time. And the thing is, I’m getting graded for it.


Now, a little about me. As you know, I used to be one of them “Nice Guys”. You know who I’m talking about. “I’m a nice guy! I’m in love! Love is great! Everything’s great! Isn’t that great?”
But here’s the secret… that girl I’m in love with? She loves somebody else. AWWW! So now I’m like… “Dangit, he’s boning her and not me, I’m so nice, so nice guys finish last…”
Hold on a minute.
I know I’m not the first person to ever spout off that bullshit, and I won’t be the last. But I can tell you right now that I’m never going to say it again. It’s fallacious. Have you ever ogled at a car accident? Cut in front of a disabled person in line? Watched Monster Garage? Then you, my friend, are not a “Nice Guy”. You’re an asshole like the rest of us.
Which brings me to my upcoming series of columns.


1. Treating women with (undue) respect
2. Owing money to a friend.
3. Saying “Nice guys finish last”
4. Whining about your boyfriend to a fat guy (girls only).
5. Effeminate high fives
6. Annoying mannerisms
7. Bad rap music

These seven things piss me off to no end. Noooooo end. They weigh on my karma and my chi until I’m about to grab a meat cleaver and start chopping off jawbones. They make me want to tear my head off and hurl it at the initiates of these horrible, horrifying, horrendous mannerisms. I’m not talking once in a while… I’m talking about all the time. Guys who play that retarded “diamond something I’m crazy bout Bentleys”… song. Guys who walk up to you in a pink shirt…then raise their hand and CARESS yours. Guys who utter the same obnoxious fake laugh more than twenty-seven times per minute. Girls who have cheated, whined, irritated, slapped, and basically castrated their boyfriends, yet still find themselves justified in complaining if he plays Xbox too much. I’m talking about this stuff.

This stuff, ladies and gentlemen, is going to push this overweight Arkansan to tears.
…but not today. No, children, I have to get to work. So tune in next week for part one of my series, and remember…

“Give a man a fish, and he can fish for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he can fish for a lifetime.”-George W. Bush

Tales from the Bishop #3…


So yeah, car radios are essentially useless nowadays. Not the CD-player part, but the irritatting dial thing with the signals and the scratchin’ and the static and whatnot. Why? Because every channel is the same. But we’re no here to listen to me complain about the radio. We’re here for something… deeper.

Yes, deeper.

Selecting a deep topic.

When you’re not sure how deep your topic should be, the best bet is to think of things that interest everybody in the world, like professional tennis or the comedy of Wanda Sykes. That failing, you can just do what you started doing at the first part of your column.

Things I’m tired of.

I’m tired of having to watch MTV and listen to Fred Durst lie about having sex with celebrities who don’t really know who he is. For example, Durst (who will be known as ‘bitch’ in the duration of this column) proceeded, in fifteen minutes, to talk about how much he loved Britney and how happy they were together… even showing a little note as an example. However, there was no actual footage of Ms. Spears. They followed this up with an interview where Spears said, ‘Gee, I don’t know bitch that well.’ No, she isn’t saying this because she’s lying. She’s saying this because bitch is a creepy, nerdy, untalented hack. He then said he kissed Angelina Jolie. The girl with elephantitis lips said she’d never met him. You know why? Because bitch is a creepy, nerdy, untalented hack, and I’m amazed I’ve let him get away with this for as long as I have.

I’m also tired of Will and Grace. I’m not homophobic, the shows just not funny. My friend and me are watching TV and a commercial comes on… “Grace is having trouble! Some guy has her mail!” Friend turns to me and says, “I bet that’s a good episode!” God, if there’s one thing that comedy can’t do without, it’s MAIL MISPLACEMENT.

Unfortunately, we decided to go do our taxes instead. Did Grace get her mail? Can anybody tell me?

Anybody else tired of Fifty Cent yet? Like how the backbeats are the only thing that you can enjoy hearing, and when he starts rapping, it sounds like a guy with a cold and an overbite reading the dictionary?

Oh, and I’m sick of Ben and J-Lo. I’m intrested in a much older couple… Ben and Jerry! I bet there’s ice cream at the reception! Fuckin’ A!

Yes, the column continues.

Let’s talk about the Recording Industry. When I think of the Recording Industry, I think of bottled water. You could just pour yourself a glass, put ice cubes in it, have just the amount you want… or buy some overpriced thing wrapped in plastic that is essentially useless after a while. If bottled water retail cost was relative to it’s production cost, then the stupidity of drinking it would be lessened. However, since water is FREE and bottled water is EXPENSIVE and both are WATER, then I’ll just use my SINK and pay my WATER BILL. Since songs online are FREE and CD’s are EXPENSIVE and both are SONGS, I’ll just use my COMPUTER and pay my ELECTRIC BILL. Really, until the price of CD’s shrinks drastically, so that it is closer in relation to production costs, there is no sense whatsoever in buying one. Just sing the song yourself. That’s what we did before record players, and I’d like to see these nutless wankers sue a twelve year old for THAT.

These are not the times that try men’s souls. These are the times that try men’s patience. God, when you get back from vacation, please sort this out. I don’t have enough ammunition.

Thank you, and goodnight.

Tales From The Bishop

Sorry, that was stupid. What’s up, yo? This is Bishop, back and fashionably late as usual. I say usual, but this is my second column, and, you know, it’s hard to say ‘as usual’ when the last one was supposedly ontime because….

Bear: SHADDUP! *smack*


Sorry about that.

Anyway, I was thinking of a lot of stuff to write a column about. First off, I’m going to rip on Eminem, in vain hopes of getiing made fun of by him at some point.

‘Hey! Hey white boy! Stop wearing glasses to try and look smart! It just makes you look like a bigger nerd! Hey! Hey! Call out a black guy for once, you coward! Or at least a white guy who can fight! Yeah! And stop rapping about yourself being controversial! Nobody thinks that anymore! All the old people love you… and that makes you lamer than lame! LAME! Move out of the way! Let’s play some AMG… now THAT is controversial! Go move to frickin’ Pennsylvania and open a dairy farm!’

…that’s not going to work.

Allright, I made promises about saying some stuff in my last column, but I’m not going to fufill them. Why not? Because I hate you. Instead, I’m going to examine, closely, the…um…

Why are there no bands around that don’t piss at least one person off? Remember Elvis? Nobody woke up in the morning and said ‘Ugh… Elvis’ the way I do whenever Avril Levine (spelling, anyone) is screaming in my ear about her Skeighter Boi’s or Justin Timberlake is breathing funny and trying to be sexy. In the old days, the only band that really, really pissed people off was the Four Seasons. ‘Sherry BAYYAYBEE’. Of course, this does not hold a candle to ‘That don’t impress me much’ by the formerly attractive, now easily hateable Shania Twain or ‘It’s gonna be May’ by N’sync. Those songs I could truly do without. It’s like they made a special point to irritate me when they were putting the album together.


*gasp* Yes?*weeze* …just justin….

‘Justin, we think you should annoy Bryan Bishop by doing that creepy breath-whisper thing that makes us want to hit you.’


Oh, let’s not forget rap, the old septic tank of artistic integrity.

‘The fish to fry in the kitchaaaaaaaaaan, the beans don’t burn on the greeeeeeeeeell, it took a whole lot of tryyyyyyyEEEEEEEEEEn, just to ket up that HEEEEEEEEll.’

Good lord. The first time I heard this I contemplated walking out of my dorm room(121 Arkansas Hall, for the ladies) and taking out the rage welling inside me on the nearest person. Nelly really irritates me. Really. I just want to take his bandage off of his face… and stick it to the warm jelly of his eyeball.

Fun with animal cruelty: Put a sock on a cat’s head, then sit back and enjoy.

Wussy songs you should check out:

‘Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears’ by Three Irish Tenors

‘Snow on the Sahara’ by Anggun

‘The Hands that Built America’ by U2

‘Little Green Bag’ by George Baker Selection

‘Grey Street’ by Dave Matthews Band

There, a little more space filled up. YES! Almost done. Bear won’t even notice I’m late. Hee hee. He’s so easy to trick.

Okay… let’s make it… three more paragraphs? Is that good? No, you want me to end it now?

Okay. See ya next week!

Tales From the Bishop

Word. This is Bryan Bishop, AKA Hawiian Bryan, AKA …er … some other stuff. A lot of you know me already. That’s good! I’m a good person to get to know. What else should you know about me … hmm …

Well, for starters, I’m a college student, majoring in ending up a down-and-out freelance writer. But hey, don’t hold that against me. Somebody has to be a down-and-out freelance writer. I should probably shut up and get to my column before Bear starts yelling at me again. He’s always so abusive when he’s drunk.

Allright, column time. Here we go.

The De-Evolution of Rap as a Cultural Art Form

Don’t be nervous by the big words, this is a rather simple observation. With the exception of a few artists such as Mos Def, Outkast, and Common, rap is slowly turning away from it’s origins as a way of expression of many things (anything from bad food in ‘Rapper’s Delight’ by Sugarhill Gang to Arizona’s decision not to celebrate Martin Luther King day in Public Enemy’s ‘By the Time I get to Arizona’) to a manner of self-glorification. Perhaps the only reason Eminem did not come across as a new incantation of Vanilla Ice was by not coming out draped in platinum and gold. And for such a revolutionary figure, what does he rap about ceaselessly?


It gets annoying after a while, doesn’t it? Turn on your radio. Go to any top fourty station. Listen for the rap or hip-hop in there (avoiding such calamities as Justin Timberlake and ‘Jenny from the Block’). What do you hear? What is being said? Let’s take some choice lyrics out of the collaboration of Ludicris and Mystikal, ‘Move Bitch’.

‘I’m doin’ a hundred on the highway
So if you do the speed limit, get the F*CK outta my way
I’m D.U.I., hardly ever caught sober
and you about to get ran the F*CK over!’

and, a wee bit later, Mystical adds his humble presence to the song.

Young and successful – a sex symbol
The b*tches want me to f*ck – true true
Hold up wait up, shorty
“Oh wazzzupp, get my d*ck sucked, what are yoouu doin’?”
Isn’t that magical?

OLD SCHOOL – I hate that phrase, ‘old school’. But it doesn’t really have any negative connotations, does it? I have yet to see something that totally sucked being described as ‘old school’. Maybe old shit, but not old school. And being old school doesn’t mean your done. Check out ‘The Art of Storytelling’ by Slick Rick and Outkast. Old School meets the best of New School.

When I listen to rap (and even though I’m a southern white guy, I do listen to it) I listen to old school, mostly. Why? Because it’s better, in my opinion. Next time you’re out and about, give some Project Pat a listen. See if your IQ doesn’t drop. Then pop in some Public Enemy. Not only did they sound good, but they had a point. Give NWA’s ‘Express Yourself’ a little listen sometime. I know what you’re thinking. ‘This idiot got all his songs from Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4.’ And to that I say… well, yeah.

Dammit. Now I look stupid, and it’s only my first column.

A Vain Attempt to Regain My Dignity

Okay, so I don’t know anything about rap or hip-hop. So sue me. You know what I do know about? Eighties music. Not the underground stuff that never made it to the top, or the famous powerballads. Nope. I know about the baby-blue Micheal Mann bubblegum sound. I know that ‘Bizarre Love Triangle’ has a whiny girl version done by a whiny girl band called ‘Frente’. And you probably know that too.

Dammit, I’m still looking stupid. Okay.

All I’m saying is I have a passion for those long-lost days when Reagan was president (although I am a staunch independent somewhere left of the Democratic platform), when big hair and sneaker-stealing was in style. I also miss Magic Johnson vs. Larry Bird. Was there a better rivalry in the history of the NBA? Although Yao Ming and Shaq looks promising….

I’m off the subject again. Dammit, Bear’s gonna take me to the woodshed.

Allright. So, music. Okay.

I’m from Arkansas. Country ain’t as big as you’d think here. We have shoes. We even have some nice lookin’ broads. We almost never wear straw hats and marry our cousins.

Almost. (sigh)

Well, I think I’ve embarassed myself enough for one column. Next time I’ll go into how ‘Dead or Alive’ re-invented the eyepatch, and I’ll also investigate hidden meanings in songs such as Madonnas ‘Like a Virgin’, Oingo Boingo’s (?) ‘Turning Japanese’, and many others.

Well, that’s it. Bye!