US Patriotism, Feminism, and Fun as Told by One Direction's "Best Song Ever"

On my 25th birthday, I received a faxed memo from God that said, "Congratulations, you are now at an age where you can enjoy pop culture phenomena unironically. You no longer have to pretend you hate rom-coms, pop country, and boy bands. Welcome to complete brain development, girl. PS- Just buy the fucking Crocs, they are wicked comfortable. " Unfortunately, some killjoys don't check their mail and are denying themselves the pleasure of these joy-creating wonder boys.   Those people are the dead worst. As Phoebe said, " No one is going to take away your Cool Kid Card for having fun for five minutes."

Without further ado, here is "Best Song Ever" by One Direction.  You can skip the two-minute intro skit starring the boys as both THEMSELVES and a know-nothing gaggle of Hollywood producers, but I wouldn't recommend it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_v9MY_FMcw

So you'll notice that the first thing they do in the song is take the opening of The Who classic "Baba O'Riley" and dramatically improve upon it....DID YOU HEAR THAT? It was the sound of one million Cool Dads slamming their fists into the table, bemoaning the lack of taste and respect for classic rock n roll among the younger generations.

Just kidding, Cool Dads talk it out  with errant youth:

daughteractsup

So come on Cool Dads, we can talk this one out.  Thanks, Human Resources Administration for the reminder on how to handle things when shit gets heated with dads.

ONE DIRECTION LOVES AMERICA

Harry Styles Loves America

Well, if you watched the opening skit, you realize that they do exceptional American accents in their alter-ego characters which suggests both love and appreciation for the land of the free and the home of the brave.  Except for Liam, who also got a seriously low-budget and homophobic caricature.  Whatever,  Harry Styles as Marcel, the marketing whizkid makes up for anything bad that happened in that skit. Also, Lady Zayn:

zaynlady

The lady that they're all going wild over in this song is revealed to be named "Georgia Rose." Now it is a known fact that there are seven female names in England: Elizabeth, Victoria, Diana, Emma, Beatrice, Melanie, and somewhat inexplicably, Geri.  Any woman from England that claims another name is either a liar or a foreigner.  CHECK HER PAPERS.  For those curious, all men in England are named Alastair, Henry,  Charles, Benedict, William, George, and Idris.  You didn't know. But now you know.

Georgia Rose as a name is about American as it gets and they are SO into her. Also, her father is a DENTIST.  Major clue that this bitch ain't from Brittannia.  Yes, if you were wondering, I still think totally dated jokes about British dental hygiene are fair game. Deal.  Moving on.

ROYALTY LOVES ONE DIRECTION

Now, you can tell me all you want that its just a coincidence that the third name of the royal baby is Louis AND the tousle-haired angel of One Direction always wearing burgundy pants is also name Louis.  But if you look me in the eye and say that the first name, "George" is not a masculinization of the female character in Best Song Ever, me and you will HAVE. WORDS.  This observation was originally Phoebe's and she has, to my knowledge, never been wrong.  Here is the 1D namesake himself with his hot mom.

They wanted to name him "Harry Zayn Louis Niall Liam" but the royal are understated people.

PROGRESSIVE VIEWS ON FEMALE ATTRACTIVENESS AND CONSENT

Early One Direction had me worried a little in that their love connections were primarily with women with super low self-esteem.  In "What Makes You Beautiful," you'll recall that the thing that made the girl in question beautiful was JUST that she didn't know she was beautiful.  Nothing turns on a teenaged boy quite like knowing that a girl has a really low opinion of herself cause that means she will be easily coaxed into ill-advised threesomes and some flexibility-proving selfies.

"So like, do you have an eating disorder too? Cause that would take my attraction next level."

But "Best Song Ever" reveals that on their long tour bus rides, the lads have been reading up like crazy on how confidence and consent are the shit.

When asked "Can I take you home with me?" Georgia Rose replied "Never in your wildest dreams!"  And instead of being like, "Bitch I am in One Direction, there are 74 hymens waiting backstage for me to bust through!" They dance the night away with this lady who is comfortable taking things at her own pace.  This gives young women everywhere the a-okay to say "No" to male advances for which they are unprepared. 1D bleeds feminism.

Now, for FUN

Most of the other highlights from this video are visual.  So here are my favorites:

"And Niall for the shimmy!"

Harry Styles makes it run, Zayn warns folks not to try this at home.

Zayn checks out his own ass.

Louis, the older member but a total baby, cries about all this paper litter.

And finally, the most true things that anyone has ever muttered in a music video or about anything ever:

Truth Talking.

There Is an Illumaniti Conspiracy Preventing Us From Knowing the Real Lyrics to "Faded" by Soul Decision

In an ongoing attempt to uncover misogynistic fuckery in pop music that informed my wayward youth, today I set my sites on dissecting the lyrics of one of music's catchiest lessons on how to date rape a girl that just wants to dance with you.  That song is "Faded" by Soul Decision.  If you haven't listened in a while, treat yourself below.  If you have, you know that these frost-tipped Diet Americans (Read: Canadians) are a date rapist/pick-up artist team of ne'er-do-wells. Mamas, don't let your sons grow up to be Soul Decision fans.  (Spoiler Alert: They probably wouldn't anyway cause this wasn't a #1 hit and they'll probably never hear it cause it doesn't have the retro cache of say a Snow or a Nelly jam. Regardless,  exercise caution and check their YouTube histories from time to time to be certain.) [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C8ElS3eS0I8]

Because this blog is about nothing if not hard-hitting journalism, my first order of business was the fact-check.  This is always a treat when looking for song lyrics because websites devoted to cataloging song lyrics have a time-honored tradition of maintaining the look and feel of a Geocities site built in 1998, complete with pop-up ads for making songs your ringtone.

Also, until I was 27 I thought that Peter Gabriel was singing, "She's...so popular" instead of "Jeux, sans frontieres" in the song "Games Without Frontiers" so I really can't be trusted on my own with these things.

But the first site I went to claimed that the first line of the song is:

"When I get you all alone, I'm gonna move in nice and close."

I've jammed to this jam enough times to know that the first line of this song is "When I get you all alone, I'm gonna take off all your clothes" so I investigated further.   That line is some mad aggro man shit and someone was trying to cover it up.

But a quick Wikipedia visit confirmed that I have been listening to the "explicit" version.  Of course I was, cause #foreverwild. No harm, no foul. Or so I thought.Falling deeper into the Soul Decision Google wormhole, egregious discrepancies emerged.

Was it "‘Cause I like the way you’re making your move," OR " Cause I like the way you're making me move"? The former is a compliment on a lady's game but the latter suggests that the feminine wiles of the woman in question has bewitched our singer into actions that are beyond his control.   Was this lyric benign or rape culture in action? Answers eluded me.

Was it "When we first met yo that deal was faded, You spent like my D's the way we compensated;" OR "When we first met yo that deal was faded, You spent like my D's the way we conversated."  I have no fucking idea what any of this part of the song means but it's the principle of the thing, you know?

I'm informed that keeping it under 750 words means people are more likely to read an entire post so I won't provide the full list of errors I discovered.  My conclusion is that there is a vast Illuminati conspiracy (for the sake of clarity, you should know that I believe that all conspiracies are linked to the Illuminati, this one doesn't have tell-tale characteristics or anything) to keep the true meaning and purpose of this song out of our reach so that we might appropriately Internet-scold the perpetrators over a decade later.

What remains undisputed across platforms is the most damning lyric of all, however. "At the end of the night when I make up your mind You’ll be coming on home with me, yea yea yea."   Yes ladies, your little mind can't be trusted to make the decision whether or not to go home and get biblical with the toe-headed gentleman in blue.  He will be making that call for you, kthanxbai.

Be safe this Independence Day, and if you see this man at the club, run.

souldecision

City High: Mansplaination At Its Absolute Worst

As a fresh-faced high school blogger over at deadjournal, I was too busy reporting on my super-exciting life in God's Country (AKA- RANCHO FUCKING PENASQUITOS) to reflect sufficiently on what was happening in popular culture at the time.  And boy was a lot of fuckery going on in popular culture during those halcyon days of the early aughts.   Since I will never have the time to chronicle it all, I am prioritizing fuckery-aimed-at-the-ladies for what I hope are several posts.  You might wonder what impact this will have, as these pop culture moments have come and gone, what's the use?  To you, sir or madam, I say "This is the Internet.  There is no use." Exhibit A: City High's classic "What Would You Do?"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LahcSFleKm8

Now, since I was an asshole in high school I thought lines like "I know about pain cause, me and my sister ran away so my daddy couldn't rape us!" were hilarious cause GROSS! DAD SEX! I realize now the folly of my youth and am appropriately horrified by this lyric, despite it being really ill-placed and rhyming with approximately nothing in the song.  But I digress.

Upon adult reflection of this song that I happened upon in a Youtube wormhole and NOT by directly purchasing from iTunes so I would get the best quality version possible, I am rightly appalled by what goes down in this song.

As you all know, it starts at a party:

"They had the liquor overflowin' the cup

About 5, 6 strippers tryin' to work for a buck

And I took one girl outside wit me

Her name was Lonni, she went to Jr. High wit me

I said, "Why you up in there dancin' for cash?

I guess a whole lot's changed since I seen you last."

So as a person named "Alana" and nicknamed "Lonnie" since infancy, I already have a natural inclination to like and defend this girl. She explains in a classic chorus that everyone already knows so I won't copy here, that like, she has a fucking kid and the dad is in prison and smokes rocks when he's not.   For the record, I don't think anyone needs an excuse to be a stripper but as far as  good excuses to be a stripper go, IT IS UP THERE. But apparently, the male singer came to the party on his HIGH HORSE since he replies:

"Girl, you ain't the only one wit a baby

That's no excuse to be livin' all crazy"

Please recall at this moment that dude hasn't seen this girl since high school and has the fucking gall to be all righteous about her career choices.   She goes onto explain, rightfully, that she has been through some shit (see Dad Sex above) and like, he doesn't get it so back off, bro.  But no, that simply won't do.  And then we get "Hold Up, hey" interlude in which they ask this fucking dude what HE would do.  Oh please, I can't fucking wait for what you would do. Pray, tell.

"Get up on my feet and let go of every excuse

What would you do?

'Cuz I wouldn't want my baby to go through what I went through

Come on, what would you do?

Get up on my feet and stop makin' up tired excuses

What would you do?

Girl, I know if my mother can do it, baby, you can do it"

At this point in the song my lady brain explodes, my bra catches on fire, and my loins spontaneously wither. Occupational hazards of a humorless feminist, I guess.

There is the always guilt-inducing "Think of the children!" line of argument.  Yes, yes we must always think of the children. Your hungry, crying baby is totes embarrassed that you're a stripper.  He totally cares.  First, you wrecked your maidenhood out of wedlock then have the audacity to provide for the subsequent children it produced with such a sordid profession.  A hex on you, harlot.

And then we learn that it is a "tired excuse" that you're a victim of rape and incest, mother to an abandoned child, and the ex-girlfriend of a criminal and addict.  He's heard it before sweetheart, and he's just not buying it! Besides, HIS mom overcame.

Listen dude, if your mom managed to raise you on some minimum-wage job at a big box store that put food on the table and gave her the time to tuck you in and kiss you goodnight, then God bless her.  But the probable truth is, that she was all strung out on quaaludes  to make your ass bearable and her side piece was probably buying some of the bologna for your sandwiches.  Didn't you read (the highly problematic but still eye-opening) Nickel and Dimed? No one actually makes it in America working minimum wage.  So stop harping on about the moral fiber of women of yesteryear and let Lonni do what she needs to do in peace.

If you want to talk to a lady who has had a rough go of it, take some cues from the master:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HfXwmDGJAB8

But alas dear friends, there is justice in the world:

Current City High "What Would You Do" View Count: 2,010,685

Current 2Pac "Keep Ya Head Up" View Count: 28,370,123

As a friendly reminder, DO NOT READ COMMENTS ON YOUTUBE VIDEOS EVER.

"Doin It" by LL Cool J: An Anthem After My Own Heart

When I was a kid, few things made me more nervous than when a dirty song came on the radio while in the car with my parents.  If I didn't change the station, I had to sit in mortified silence as the song described the details of the sexual encounter while Ipretended to take in the sites of the soul-killing suburban terrain I was being carted around. If I did change the station, I was tacitly admitting that I knew what they are talking about in the song, even when the deeds were heavily cloaked in euphemisms.
Rapper LL Cool J Barechested Wearing a Crown

One song that always got the switch off from me in the car was "Doin It" by LL Cool J and that broad that never got credit for it. I will call her Doris for the remainder of this post.  For years, I have considered this one of the most explicit, raunchy songs every to hit mainstream radio. But a recent listen to the song revealed that despite its explicit nature, this is one of the most praiseworthy songs about sex in the history of pop. Let me break it down for you.

Safety

As we all know, safety first. And that is true all the more in this world of disease-plagued genitals and the continuing menace of unplanned pregnancy.   This song gives shout outs to safe sex not once, but twice!

Doris is all
"You use a rubber"
and LL is like
"Damn right"
and Doris only then declares
"You are my lover."
He's not like "Yeah, I guess." He is super into it.  LL, my Kangol hat is off to you on this condom enthusiasm.
The other declaration of safety goes:
"Safe sexin it, flexin it, gettin mad affectionate Chewin it, oohin it, all while we're doin it"
Now I am not going to venture a guess as to what "chewin" and "oohin" are. BUT, a second nod to safe sex and a shoutout to affection during the deed are a-okay in my book.   LL may be cool, but he is not above showing a little tenderness when he is with a lady.  But tenderness is not the only thing he has in store for Doris.  Let's move on.
The Lady's Pleasure

If I had a dime for every time I heard a song where the male performer is all about getting his and leaving the lady's pleasure behind, I would have enough money to buy a miniature hippopatumus that I would name Frederick and feed kale chips to.  In this song, LL is certainly concerned with his own pleasure but is absolutely intent on pleasing Doris as well.

LL croons

"I wanna knock your block off, get my rocks off Blow your socks off make sure your G spots soft"

Of four things he plans to do, only one involves his rocks. The others are all about her block (???), her socks, and her spot! A refreshing retreat from the male-orgasm-centric sexy songs we so often hear.

Bridging Cultural Divides

He represents Queens, she was raised out in Brooklyn. Enough said.

brooklynvqueens-120612

No Walk of Shame Required

Now if you know me, you know that instead of the so-called "Walk of Shame" post-coitus, I take "The Stride of Pride."  But many a young lass has been kicked out of bed unceremoniously to stumble her way onto a train home, staring deep into her iPhone to see if she'll get a reassuring "Had fun, good night" type of text.  So I've heard.  But with LL as your mate, no such walk is required.

He closes this song that is now evidently about respecting women and their needs by saying:

"Word life, I like the way the ep went down Go to sleep, tomorrow I'll take you back downtown"

Not only does he let her sleep over, he offers her a ride home.  The "back downtown" might be a euphemism for doing it again but I like to thing that she lives near the Fulton Mall or something and he is going to drive her there from Queens.  NO SMALL TASK.

This has been your regularly scheduled over-thinking of a song by Alana.  Be safe this weekend.