Tuesday, February 10, 2009

At Last

Beyonce. The name grates. Excess. Nostalgia. Fake class...…all the elements of the tuxedoed and Harry Winston-ed aristo-hypocrisy of the current music scene. The Grammy Awards? Don’t get me started.

It’s all mixed up. Gwyneth Paltrow gets a music award, Jennifer Hudson gets an Oscar, American Idol contestants get Grammies. When I need real medical care, I don’t go to George Clooney, although some of the young clinic doctors I’ve seen recently seem to have less credibility than the ER staff.

But Etta James… well, you go, girl. That’s right. Not only did Beyonce not gain any weight for that role… you had more integrity in your little finger. I actually opened for Etta James one night…okay, maybe she was at her peak weight… but they had to rent a golf cart to ride her up a specially-constructed ramp to the stage where she leaned her awesome behind on a double-seater stool for the show. And she sang her ass off. I didn’t see that scene in the movie. Actually I didn’t see the movie at all, because although I think Beyonce is a pretty girl who can carry a tune, she needs a racial identity check. She’s trans-racial. Whatever.

So yes… the Inaugural Ball… We all realize Obama might not have had the success he did without Oprah and JayZee and the rap world using their large influence on media-hypnotized America. But to ‘do’ Etta at the ball? The President didn’t ask you to sing the National Anthem, Beyonce; he got Aretha. You should have thought over your song choice. Just because you played the role in the film, doesn’t mean you have the right to usurp Etta's identity in front of all those people. Not to mention the string arrangement. And did anyone ask Etta?

We’re so confused by film-roles, ‘reality’ shows, remakes… no one knows what the deal is. Copyrights? Copycats? If you complain to the wrong person, you’ll get a bullet. Ask TI. Ask Biggy. Oops..he’s dead. I nearly forgot.

Now we get to A-Rod, or A-Hole, as the Post had the balls to call him yesterday. Why? In this world of 300 trillion dollar Ponzi schemes which is our own economy… the fact that A-Rod used performance-enhancing drugs should be a shock? In 2003 before the Yankees got him in a trade? Was anyone else suspicious of 300 home runs in a world where apples and oranges are shot with steroids so people will buy them? Where sports betting is a major economy of its own and everything else in America is so surgically altered, whitewashed, media-spun and non-authentic… are we really shocked that Baseball isn’t exactly the home-made apple-pie all-American clean and wholesome sport it was? Was it ever? Maybe before guys got paid to play.

In the 21st century, heroes like the pilot Sully are few and far between. Besides, A-Rod isn’t even American. And Madonna… his pal…what is she but a well-groomed corporation? Is there a single Madonna performance that hasn’t been tweeked and backing-tracked into what Americans see as perfection? Perfection is some plastic surgery-enhanced, personal trained, air-brushed, botoxed, re-edited version of whatever we expect.

And on the subject of performance-enhancement...Wall Street wasn’t happy with ‘real’ profit margins…so they cranked up the volume. As did A-Rod. How would you do under that kind of pressure? And it's not as if he beat his wife or raped anyone. The media crucified him for kicking back at a bar with Chuck Knoblauch in the face of what is 6-year-old news. Joe Torre's book sales have had some performance-enhancement these last weeks. Besides, A-Rod might even have been doing what he was told. But don't go there--- you might get a bullet, too.

So does America really feel betrayed? Is America the innocent 'boy' it was in the 1950's? Madonna dumped him weeks ago. Bad for her image which takes a staff of hundreds to maintain. Give me a break. And no-one complained about Beyonce the blonde bombshell at the ball. No one except Etta. As I said, you go, girl. The gastric-bypass version of Etta who is still pissed off.

What can I say? It was my birthday yesterday. I went into Crumbs to buy myself a cupcake. $4. I thought about it. Better to spend the money on something with protein like 4 cans of tuna which is all the nourishment I can afford these days. As a little joke, I asked ‘So how much for a crumb?’ ‘We don’t sell crumbs’, the girl answered me, without humor.

At last. I personally pledge allegiance, Etta.

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