Thursday, January 30, 2014

Is the old Jack hiding in the Vatican?

Not everyone remembers this but Jack from the Jack in The Box showed up to save the company which almost died of e-coli.

When I was a kid you'd go to a Jack in The Box drive-thru and you'd actually talk into a clown head to order. They had a big ad campaign when they updated their image and ditched the clown, commercials of the clown being blown up with dynamite and such.

Then, in the early 90s three kids died of e-coli linked back to tainted meat served by Jack in The Box. It hit the company hard as you can imagine. Dead kids equals terrible PR. Sales plummeted and stock value crashed. They were in trouble.

In 1994 Jack came back in the very original and often controversial (Jack blowing up a room full of the suits who'd gotten rid of him) commercials and the public loved it. This new Jack with the normal human body and ridiculous head was a hit. And we forgot all about the e-coli and the dead kids.

And that, is how is I feel about the new Pope.


I work in a pretty masculine industry. My boss is a pretty manly guy.

When my ulcerative colitis was at it's worse and I'd dropped a crazy amount of weight and looked like death he took notice. He asked how it started and I said that I went to the doctor after not having a solid shit for over a month.

As I tried various treatments and medications he showed his concern in his own manly way.

I'd go into the bathroom and when I came out I'd see him standing nearby.
"Solid?" he'd ask.
I'd shake my head, no.
He'd give me a "Sorry buddy." and we'd go on with our workday.

Then, one day, I came out of the john and he said, hopefully, "Solid?"
I proudly nodded my head, affirmative.
He high fived me.
And throughout the day, whenever there was a quite moment I'd hear him cheer from his office, "SOLID!"

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

On The Macklemore Witch Hunt:

I don't think he stole the song Thiftshop. The similarities to the song he supposedly cribbed aren't that strong. (Google it if you don't know what I'm talking about.)

I think its a hard sell to say that being white is an advantage in hip-hop. White artists having that level of success in hip hop is still an anomaly outside of ICP circles. (Like crop circles but scarier.)

I don't think his lyrics about worrying that he was gay as a kid represent a lyrical #NoHomo but rather an honest telling of his personal experiences with homophobia, his own. Critics are leaving out the lines "Bunch of stereotypes all in my head." "A preconceived idea of what it all meant".

I don't think saying "I'd think that hip hop hated me" is him saying everyone in hip hip but him is homophobic. I think that's a huge stretch and skips the line "Have you read the YouTube comments lately?"

There are lyrics in Same Love and Thriftshop that I rejoice at hearing on mainstream radio. Both songs had some great things to say and said them to a big audience that needed to hear them.

I find it funny that he's accused of exploiting the momentum of the marriage equality movement. Right, because all those artists have been scoring all them hits doing hip hop tunes about marriage equality. It was a no-brainer. (/Sarcasm)

Could he have handled the awards thing better? Yeah. He could've been a fucking hero. I appreciate when people are heroic. I don't think "You were less than heroic!" is enough of a slight to justify much of the vitriol I've seen aimed his way.

I honestly don't know how the Grammies work. But lets not pretend that this isn't subjective. Did he have the best hip hop/rap album of the year. Probably not. Did the winners in any other category have the best whatever album of the year? Ever? Usually not, with occasional delightful surprises IN MY SUBJECTIVE OPINION! Of course I realize that institutional racism has historically played a role in who gets recognized, continues to play a role, and that is where I think his opportunity to be a hero was missed.

I think he's a good guy, who says some good things, and that his sudden rapid acceleration into HUGE success is probably a bit daunting. I think he's trying, and doing pretty well more often than not.

Not sure if this matters or not, but I'm not writing this as a huge fan of his music. I like Thrift Shop, a fun song that does a great job of mocking the label/status bullshit. I like the words and message of Same Love. I don't actually listen to him often at all.