Editing is an art form. My son Cedric was coming in the front door a few days ago when his sister asked, “Did you eat an ice cream sandwich?” He replied, “Malachi had two.” That was, strictly speaking, true. Malachi had eaten two ice cream sandwiches. The difficulty is that Cedric had also eaten one. […]
The Christian Church is in exile. Not that we are living in tents (though many church buildings may qualify as temporary). Instead, there is a deeper exile. The soul of the American Church is in the plot point of the epic poem in which the protagonist becomes a homeless wanderer Like the exiled warrior of […]
Everyone has to have an overarching story. A mythos that holds what they see and hear together. When I lived in California, I did evangelism on Wednesdays. I hoped to do it other days as well, but Wednesdays I did my sermon prep at the neighborhood park. I introduced myself to people and invited folks to […]
I make my children practice telling jokes at dinner. If I can help it, none of my progeny will have bad comedic timing. The girl that married me, lo so many zodiacal rotations ago, hoped to be a comedian when she grew up. The same skills, it turns out, apply to motherhood. (She has a […]
It is true that nobody makes a new earth without first making a new heaven. – G. K. Chesterton (Ffinch 1986, 278) I have recently been wondering, if I were to travel to Krypton, would the sun give me superpowers? Or would Krypton’s sun, being red and therefore older and cooler, deplete my powers? The way chunks of Krypton […]
On The Roots newest album ‘. . . and then you shoot your cousin,” one of the most powerful tracks is ‘When the People Cheer.’ Each stanza is written from a different perspective. The third stanza, Black Thought’s stanza, is written from the perspective of a sex addict that has reached both a financial and existential low because he is enslaved to sexual pleasures. He knows that what he is doing is wrong, but he can no longer resist the strip clubs. He turns in to an after-hours joint to blow his last dollar on a lap dance.
Netflix’ new documentary Hip Hop Evolution is a history of the development and rise of Hip Hop and Rap. In one of the interviews, Ice T, a primeval purveyor of Gangster Rap, talks about his early rhymes: “I was just writing about my reality.” He was trying to capture “the laid back vibe of reality.” The people in the neighborhood listened because they recognized their life in his words. According to Ice Cube, another early Gangster Rapper, Ice T wrote rhymes that “were our version of what a day in the life of Los Angeles was like.” They were not trying to create a new genre. They wanted to fetter their daily insanity with verse.