Archive for March, 2014

remember them?!

i started exercising when i was in high school, running in the summertime.  it coincided with my introduction to hardcore, most notably the [kick ass] band Walls of Jericho.

i would run and dream about someday meeting the bands i would listen to, explaining how their music had inspired me to exercise, and of course, lose 60 pounds or so.

ah, youth.

i was thinking about this today; i was running on a beach, which is not my normal place nor my favorite pastime.  i hate sand and hate the ocean, but that’s not pertinent for our purposes today.  read more and be inspired!

(more…)

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pizza and pbr

Posted: March 8, 2014 in punk
Tags: , ,

So last week we discussed a bit about how punk tends to objectify and glorify women who (generally) fit into our cultural standard of beauty (white, thin, young).  This is obviously a broad generalization and not true in all cases, but the vast majority.  (side note: if someone can tell me statistically that this is incorrect I would honestly love you forever).  I want punk to be different.  But it’s really not.

fat mike…really not that fat

When I was in college we’d have small shows and parties in basements of the cool scene kids in my town.  It was a lot like high school with a different coolness hierarchy.  The coolest kids were the ones that didn’t like their minimum wage jobs (or didn’t have one), dressed in black clothes with patches all over them, painted their own leather jackets, and seemed to live on PBR, weed and pizza.

mmmmmmmm

I had the most trouble with the last part of this (although really, if I painted my own jacket it’d look like a child’s painting during a spasm).  Eating nothing but carbohydrates and drinking 15 beers a night is really not good for anyone, but is only visible on those of us with metabolisms more closely resembling a snail moving on hot asphalt.  Even though I knew this, instinctively (and because like, come on, at this point I was a professional dieter), I still couldn’t get why some people stayed thin.

except for this guy

It’s a lot of the same shit.  Women are supposed to be thin while still doing crazily unhealthy (and calorieific) things (and not showing effort, of course, it’s supposed to be natural).  PBR has as many calories per can as two apples, or a serving of almonds, or a greek yogurt.  To drink 15 PBRs is as many calories as a day’s worth of food, and that’s without any food.  Which is really not the best idea for your body, although it leads to a short and sweet drunken time.

Women have an even harder time wit ze boozes.  We metabolize food differently (immortalized in those ever classy SlimQuick ads) and of course this also translates into how many Jamo shots are going to lead to antics.  For us ladies only, of course; we all know real men can hold their booze!  (hahahaha just kidding, but we’ll maybe talk about that later)  The only way to stay thin would be to only drink.  And not eat.  Or to have a kick ass metabolism (which  90% is really not up   to you, it’s your dang parents!  Thanks mom!).  Or to throw up everything you put in your body.

More than anything, it’s the hypocrisy that is bothersome.  Don’t say you’re subculture or anti-culture, then fucking put the same unrealistic stuff on a pedestal to be achieved.  Fuck eating disorders, fuck ideals, fuck all the people who celebrate alternative ideals of beauty, which look a great deal like the old ones (I’m looking at you, Suicide Girls!).  This aggression will not stand, man.

ghetto…

Posted: March 3, 2014 in Uncategorized
Tags: ,

Punk rock vs. R&B

No, it’s actually not going to be a big debate.

together at last?

As I’ve mentioned before, I work mostly with people of color, colleagues and clients.  Being in this environment has exposed me to a great deal of music, especially popular music, that I had previously been able to avoid.  This exposure has led to a lot of thinking, and the second installment in the punk rock portion of this blog.

While driving to a basketball game, a song came on the radio called “Ghetto” by August Alsina.  Listening to it, I was struck by the enormous emphasis on the female body (a.k.a. objectification) and the confusion about money.  Is it desirable to have money, but date someone poor?  Is this because it puts the poor partner in your debt, afraid to leave, without resources to escape?  Sounds an awful lot like definitions of abuse.

awwww, i have to date people and make them feel shitty so i can feel powerful

This morning I was trying to think of some well known punk songs that have some of the same confusion, the same issues.  Punk as an art form is inherently limited, as artists and fans reject monetary success as “selling out” (see: Rise Against, Against Me!) vs (Leftover Crack,    Against All Authority.  Hell, even Frank Turner (“we can never sell out, because we never bought in”)

We are so confused.  We don’t want to work our shitty 9-5 jobs for the man but we can’t live without money, man.  Real talk.

(Side note: I love this website www.angryyoungandpoor.com  where things are too expensive for actual poor kids to buy.  Awesome).

We expect people to learn a certain way in punk..even though we say we don’t.  I remember lots of hype about Beth Ditto (who sang for Gossip which was a fairly mediocre indie band) being fat, going against the mainstream.  If we’re going against all that crap, where are the fatties?  Even most of the Riot Grrrrrl bands were young, white and thin, in makeup.

punk fucking rock. but thin. white. pretty. makeup.

Bodies in punk rock (as in most music forms) are primarily male bodies.  Do a google search for “punk.”  Here, I’ll even do it for you.    Some ladies, not traditionally attractive, right?  Mostly white, skinny, young.  Hair funny colors.  For some reason Miley Cyrus?  Quick, name a punk band with all girls.  Not even the Distillers!  Not even Star Fucking Hipsters!  Not the Horrorpops!  And notice how these women look.  Young, white, thin, makeup.

R&B and Punk objectify different people, different looks, different ideals.  But we’re still objectifying.

More to come next week!