We Give Speed to Children and Don’t Allow Adults to Smoke Pot

“If you want to know how fucked up this country is, know that we give the best speed available to our children (adderall), and we don’t allow adults to smoke pot.” – Lewis Black  in Old Yeller* 

If you want a good laugh watch Lewis Black’s comedy special Old Yeller.  It starts a little bit slow but builds up steam as it goes along.  As usual, Black is spot on in his comic observations of American life.  I was thinking about how I have to go out canvassing this afternoon, after just getting back from the road yesterday, and I started thinking about how it would be nice if I had some speed, and therefor…

*This may be slightly paraphrased.  I searched the internet for awhile trying to find the quote, but I couldn’t.  There are some other blogs/websites that use this quote, but it didn’t look to me like they were accurate in what he actually said.  So I went as best I could from memory.  

John Oliver Uses Dogs as Supreme Court Justices

This video from John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight is must see.  He is taking on the Supreme Court for not allowing cameras in the the court.  They release audio, but do not allow video.  The team at Last Week Tonight has created its own footage by using dogs as visual stand ins for the Supreme Court.  It is amazingly hilarious.  John Oliver is somehow always able to pull back the curtain and show the absurdity lurking behind.

Would Jesus Want to See a Cross?

A lot of Christians wear crosses around their necks. You think when Jesus comes back he ever wants to see a fucking cross? It’s like going up to Jackie Onassis wearing a rifle pendant.  - Bill Hicks

I’d be lying if I said I knew Hicks work that well, though I certainly have heard of him.  Mark, our saxophone player, tipped me off to this quote last night.  I have always thought it strange that many people’s symbol of hope is also a symbol of one of the most excruciating ways to die possible.  Do some reading on crucifixtions sometime, it’s horrible!  If you really wanted to follow Jesus wouldn’t it be better to wear some kind of symbol of love or peace or understanding?  That is why I find things like The Passion of the Christ so wrongheaded,  it dwells on all of the wrong things.  But then again, I guess most churches do the same….

John Oliver On Drones

This is an absolutely excellent on The United States drone program.  While most news is entertainment posing as news, this is news posing as entertainment.  You will see a far more in depth discussion on our drone program than you will see on almost any cable news channel.  It just happens to be delivered by someone that can pepper the information he is delivering with some great jokes.  Our use of drones is one of the moral and ethical dilemmas of our time.  The fact that we are not having a greater discussion on this is troubling.  I have admitted to supporting Obama in the past.  This is one issue that he is terrible on and should be held accountable for.

John Oliver’s Worst Stage Experience

The above video is comedian John Oliver talking about the worst time he bombed onstage.  It is truly hilarious.  It’s short and I don’t want to ruin anything by telling you what is in the clip.

As someone that makes his living on stage there is definitely an element that I can relate to in it.  There are good nights, bad nights, and nights in between.  So much is out of your control.  As a musician a terrible sound man can make your best efforts futile.  One time on my birthday I drunkenly fell off the stage.  These things happen.  The only difference between an amateur and a pro is that the pro gets back up and just keeps going.  Over time you learn not to be embarrassed or defeated.  We are all unfailingly imperfectly human.

If Richard Pryor Fronted a Metal Band

One of the albums I have been listening to is the new Body Count album, Manslaughter.   This is a ridiculously absurd album.  By lead singer Ice-T’s own admission this album is grindhouse.  It is meant to be over-the-top.   Songs about torture, black voodoo sex, and murder permeate the album.  However, this is absurdity with a purpose:  The record is meant to show how meaningless the modern recording industry is.  This album is a comedy record as well as a heavy metal record.  It is more laugh out loud funny than it is offensive, and that is by design.  Ice-T is just having fun. 

The riffs and songs in general don’t rise to the level of Body Count’s self titled debut.  However, anyone that liked that record will find enough to like here. 

“Guys have gone from ‘Fight the Power’ to ‘What does Kim Kardashian have on today?’  What the fuck is going on?”

Ice is telling dirty jokes and speaking truth to power, often at the same time.  On the song Pray for Death he imagines torturing a bully by splitting his nuts with a golf club. 

“America’s losing their cribs while you are bragging about the shit you did or shit you bought.  Most of it lies.  Yeah you know I know you know.”

It’s like if Slayer and Public Enemy made a record together.  In another era this album might be simply entertaining, but unfortunately it is one of the few records I have heard recently where it feels like something is on the line. 

Imagine if an angry Richard Pryor fronted an extreme metal band.  You’ll arrive somewhere close to where these proceedings go.  If that sounds at all interesting to you check it out.  If you have never heard Body Count start with their self titled debut.  If you like that album this is a worthy follow up.