Tales from Adolescence: Kill Bill and Jewel

Note: In this occasional series, I’ll tell tales from my youth. Some will be about me, others about my friends. In this example, it’s the latter.

In high school I worked at the local Jewel grocery store. It was a pretty decent job; the hours were flexible and the pay we good. I never saw myself as a model employee, but compared to my coworkers I could be seen that way.

Continue reading “Tales from Adolescence: Kill Bill and Jewel”

Dissent in Detroit

Earlier this year I wrote about dissent in the arts, but specifically in music. In that post, I said,  “I hope dissent in the concert halls and theaters across this land makes encourages more civil discourse because this country needs to understand one another more than ever.”

It may not have happened in a concert hall, but we need to talk about Eminem’s freestyle at last night’s BET Awards. It is straight up bananas.

It doesn’t mince words, but it doesn’t have to – it’s a rap freestyle. It’s supposed to make you uncomfortable. You’re supposed to rap and talk shit about your opponent. But Eminem does more than talk shit: he scorches the Earth. The ferocity of his verses, the herky jerky delivery, and the end where he tells his fans that if they support Trump they can fuck off is impressive. Eminem has always struck as a mad, perhaps madder than Onyx – who always sound pissed off, but the madness sounds sincere and palpable.

In these times of supposed culture wars where salvos come daily from Twitter, it’s incredibly refreshing to see a cogent salvo against those in charge come from a format outside of print and social media.

Let’s Talk. Progressively.

Note: I know the author of the book reviewed in this post.

When it comes to politics, I want concise and salient talking points spoken by politicians and myself. Sadly, the former does not possess this and the latter possess more passion than saliency. In these times of polarization, I returned to John K. Wilson’s book How The Left Can Win Arguments and Influence People to see if talking points made almost 20 years ago hold up and to see if I could apply them to today’s political conversation. Sadly, they’re still relevant.

Continue reading “Let’s Talk. Progressively.”