I usually have some of music on while I'm writing something. It helps to shut the actual world, with its myriad of bastards, out of my writing space. Today, in a weird move for me, I was listening to lots of hip-hop. Normally I like rock, metal and sometimes 80's power ballads (when I'm drunk).
I say hip-hop, but I only own albums by a few hip-hop artists so I'm hardly a connoisseur of the medium. I used to be really into Eminem, D12 (SEO keywords!) and their various affiliates so those are the only albums I actually have and they're pretty old. They've all probably moved on and done another bunch of albums, songs and feuds between them.
Anyway, they still kick ass. But I'm starting to notice some the rampant misogyny (more SEO keywords!) and cringing at the over the top violence. Not that I agree with my parents now after all this time or anything. Still a long way from me declaring that rap isn't 'real music' or even worse, telling people that they misspelled 'crap' (y'know, the oldest joke that old people use when they discuss rap music).
I just got thinking, obviously these artists don't really murder people in cold blood, fight the police and rape women. That'd be horrible. I'm not even convinced that they hate women as much as they say they do.
I don't want to put words into anybody's mouth or try to talk about situations I've never experienced. I'm a white guy from Liverpool in England. The closest I've been to Detroit is watching Robocop.
But it seems to me, from my outside opinion, that the members of D12, and too many black Americans, grew up and are still growing up in some of the worst poverty we can imagine in the western world. I don't want to get too into the day to day horrors these people get into, better writers, commentators and people have gotten into it with way more detail and passion than I could ever muster.
Already I can see myself digging myself into a hole...
Anyway, it seems that if the people who actually live these lives start talking about them honestly, we ignore them. But if they start talking about daily gunfights, smacking women around and slicing people up with chainsaws -- then you get a moral panic on your hands, you get the attention that you need.
I could be totally way off point here, and if so I apologise. Like I said, I'm not an expert on the subject. It was just a random thought I had while I was making my third or fourth coffee of the day.
Anyway, my gym has been closed all week and it opened up again today. I've been dying to get back to it. I'm gonna go over and see how weak and flabby I've gotten in a week. I'm guessing a lot.
I didn't make the video below, by the way. It belongs to this chap: http://www.youtube.com/user/TrigunVash2?feature=watch I just thought it'd introduce you to D12 if you haven't heard them before. They're pretty good, great wordsmithery if you can get past the perceived misogyny and violence. Good for when you've got writer's block.
Second blog entry! One and a half left until I beat my record