Wednesday: I compare Kanye West to Dave Grohl and also to my Dad
So the other day, I was watching the Pan Am games and they announced that Kanye West was going to be performing at the Pan Am Closing Ceremonies, that he would be the big closing act. My first reaction was “Did every other musician on the planet say No?” because frankly, I think it’s a lousy choice. Not because I don’t like rap music—while it’s a bit of a niche market in Canada, and not completely to my taste, there are a lot of fantastic rap artists out there. In fact, I spent a lot of time the other night downloading a group called Die Antwoord, a South African rap group who are absolutely insane, but fascinating all at the same time (if you want a good scare, check out “Ugly Boy”). I’ve always had very diverse musical tastes, even at my age, and will listen to just about anything, even COUNTRY MUSIC (time for my favourite country music joke of all time: what happens when you play a country music record backwards? You get your truck back, your job back, your dog back, and your wife back. But you don’t hear Satan cuz God’s on your side).
But when I heard the Kanye West announcement, I was perturbed for a wide variety of reasons. For example, why not have a Canadian closing act? The Pan Am games are all about showcasing Canadian culture, especially in preparation for a bid for the 2024 Olympic Games, and instead of someone like Shad or Classified, they choose a foreign bit player in a reality show who already gets so much media exposure that the Pan Am games would be nothing to him. Then I made my peace with the idea of an out of country act—why not show the world how Canada embraces internationality?—but I still had problems with Kanye. I know that a lot of people like him, first and foremost Kanye himself, and maybe that’s the ultimate issue: his ego is disproportionate to his musical talent, and as my brother pointed out, “his antics and tantrums are the antithesis of respect and sportsmanlike behaviour “(He posted that on Facebook. My brother is a lawyer and actually talks like that all the time because he has a Ph. D. from Oxford, so he knows his shit. Unlike me, who would have used swear words.) One of the things that Kanye West is currently very well known for occurred recently at the Glastonbury music festival, where he ended his set by butchering “Bohemian Rhapsody”, one of the best songs ever written, and then proclaimed that he was “the world’s greatest living rock star”. I didn’t know that rap counted as rock, but whatever; it’s still a pretty big claim to make. So I did a little research on the topic of Kanye West, but I thought it would only be fair if I put it into some context. I pondered for a while: Who do I think really IS the greatest living rock star so I could compare the two, and the choice was instantly clear: Dave Grohl, lead singer of the Foo Fighters, and former drummer of Nirvana. And now, for your reading pleasure, I have created a comparison chart to prove that Dave Grohl is, if not THE greatest living rock star, at least a GREATER living rock star than Kanye West:
|Dave Grohl||Kanye West|
|Can sing – the main criteria for being a rock star in my opinion||Can’t sing – as evidenced by his crap rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody, and relying on the audience to hit the high notes for him.|
|Doesn’t rap, but probably could if he wanted to, and respects rappers||Is a decent rapper, but he’s no Tupac|
|Plays several instruments, including drums and a variety of guitars||I saw him play a few chords on a piano once, but he messed up the ending. I’m sure if he wanted to though, he could learn to play every instrument on the planet in two hours because he’s Kanye and he’s that smart.|
|Created a documentary series called ”Sound City” where he recorded songs in several American cities with local musicians and producers, then celebrated the musical history of each city, proving that not only is he an amazing musician but a historian as well.||Thinks Coldplay are better than the Beatles. Said in an interview that he’s too busy writing history to read it—or worry about it, based on his subsequent statement that he “likes to create against the past…Michaelangelo, Picasso, and you know, the pyramids”.|
|When you Google “Things Dave Grohl says”, the first few hits are Brainyquotes, “The Silver Tongue of Dave Grohl”, “Reasons Why Dave Grohl Is Awesome”, and “Inspirational Dave Grohl Quotes”.||When you Google “Things Kanye West says”, the first few hits are “Kanye West Quotes That Completely Baffled Us”, “14 Increasingly Stupid Things Kanye West Has Said”, “Top Dumb Kanye West Quotes Compilation”, and “Shit Kanye Says”.|
|Recently started his latest tour with The Foo Fighters by falling off the stage and badly breaking his leg. Instead of calling off the show, he reappeared in a a wheelchair with a temporary cast on, and continued the set. The tour has gone on, renamed as The Broken Leg Tour.||Recently stopped a show dead to yell at two audience members for not standing up and dancing. A roadie had to tell him that they were both in wheelchairs and couldn’t get up.|
|He named his children Harper, Violet, and Ophelia||He named his daughter North. NORTH WEST. Yes, Kanye, we get it.|
|Builds up and has tremendous respect for other musicians; in fact, when The Foo Fighters had to cancel their headlining show at Glastonbury because of his broken leg and he was asked about Kanye West replacing him, he said that it could be the greatest gig of all time.||Consistently interrupts other musicians receiving awards to tear them down, self-promote, and embarrass the musicians HE thinks should have won.|
Sure, maybe I’m picking and choosing a little, but if you spend any time at all investigating these two guys, it becomes patently obvious that Dave Grohl cares more about music and musicianship than Kanye West. Which makes him, hands down, the GREATER living rock star. In fact, MOST people are greater than Kanye West. Case in point—my own dad. Like Dave Grohl, he’s a better singer than Kanye, although he prefers opera. He can also rap—well, it sounds like rap when he’s had a few scotches and starts to talk really fast with that Scottish accent. Kanye says he “rocks a bespoke suit” and is a “tastemaker”? Well, my dad looks pretty natty in his tuxedo, which he brings out for special occasions like dining with the Captain on a cruise ship. That’s right, Kanye—THE CAPTAIN. And maybe my dad doesn’t play an instrument either, but he can whistle REALLY well. He’s super smart—truth—and not just because he SAYS he is. He always gets the answers right on Jeopardy, and wins so fast at Trivial Pursuit that we all get mad at him. Kanye admittedly doesn’t read books, and “wouldn’t want a book’s autograph”, which doesn’t even make any sense, while my dad is an avid reader. And a shout-out to my mom—she’s also smart and can sing, and she hasn’t had any work done like Kim Kardashian, but she looks great and could probably balance a martini glass on her ass if you asked her to. But you wouldn’t. Because she’s a respectable English lady like the Queen, and you wouldn’t ask the Queen to balance a martini glass on HER ass, would you?! Dave Grohl wouldn’t. But I’ll bet Kanye would.
Thursday: I have key misadventures
On Thursday, my mom and I went to the cottage. We were planning a very cool “girl’s night”, even though technically neither of us are girls anymore. It was an hour’s drive to get there, and we had loaded up on snack food, wine, and other “girl’s night” things, like more wine. We pulled into the driveway, and I reached into the back seat to pull the cottage keys from my purse. But they weren’t IN my purse. They weren’t in any part of my purse, and they weren’t in the glove compartment. WTF?! I asked my mom if she had a key to our cottage and she said, “Yes…”, and I was so happy for a minute, then she said, “…in our car. Back home with your dad.” I stood there for a minute considering options. I knew that there were several people who had an extra key to our place. First call—my brother, whose cottage was just down the road and who I was sure had a key. No answer. Mom and I drove down to his place while we waited, Mom sure that he had a key to HIS place in the BBQ so that we could get in. She also had a key to his place, but guess where it was? In their car back at home with Dad. We wandered around my brother’s place for a while, but no luck—the bbq was empty, and all rocks overturned had nothing under them. Then he called back and verified that No, he didn’t have one. In the meantime, though, we had discovered that his front door was wide open, although the screen door was latched. But I didn’t have a key to HIS place so that I could go in and shut the front door because it was on MY key chain. Which was missing. When I asked him if he wanted me to cut a hole in the screen and unhook the screen door, he was like, “NO!!! GOD NO!!”. Ok, maybe not that freaked out, but pretty adamant that he didn’t want me to do that. Then he said his electrician had a key, and to call him to come over. I realized that Lloyd also had a key to my place. Eureka! But he didn’t answer his phone. Neither did the local contractor, who also had a key that he kept for convenience. For CONVENIENCE—like when it’s convenient to give it to me! My aunt had a key, but she was out of town. I called her anyway, but she didn’t have a key to HER place hidden outside anywhere so that I could get in her house to get MY key. End result—I was keyless and cottageless. We had no choice but to come back home, where I was terrified that I was going to find the lanyard with my keys hanging on a hook by the door. But no. I scoured the house, but there was no sign of them. The next day, I went back to the cottage with Ken’s keys, certain that I must have accidentally locked them inside, but they weren’t there either. It’s four days later, and the keys have yet to appear. I realize that this blog entry isn’t very funny, but it’s true to life, and sometimes life isn’t funny, it’s just kind of absurd. So to make up for the lack of humour, here’s the conversation that Ken, Kate, and I had today:
Ken: Hey Kate—your mom and I are going to compete in the 2024 Pan Am Senior Games!
Me: What the hell, Ken! I told you that was going to be my blog topic this week. How am I supposed to blog about that now, when you’ve already told everyone about it?! You posted it on Facebook yesterday, and then you’re telling HER now? That’s like EVERYONE who even reads my blog!
Ken: You can still write about it…I’m sure not everyone who reads your blog saw it.
Me: What would I say? You attached a link to all the sports. You spoiled the surprise. Stop stealing my ideas. Now I know how all those guys felt when Shakespeare took their poems and turned them into plays.
Ken: *sighs and rolls eyes* OK, honey.