Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sweet Thursday. Black Friday.

Now I've been following with much amusement the latest internet "sensation" Rebecca Black and her "song" Friday. Yes we're all enjoying it in an ironic way but I'd just like to add my twenty cents to this youtube "event." The song wasn't actually written by Rebecca it was written by two grown adults at the ARK music factory. That's right, two adult human beings wrote this tune. Rebecca's mother paid $2000 dollars for her daughter to record the song and have the video made. Not a bad investment considering that guessimates are saying the ditty has already made in excess of a million dollars.

Now I'm not here to attack young Rebecca - all power to her. However I'd just like to send a few small thoughts out into the ether. While we're all laughing about the lyrics of this song let's not forget this was put out not as a joke but the creators saw it as a serious song. A song that had something to say.

Now as chance who have it I am currently reading a book by master wordsmith John Steinbeck. The genius behind such classics as Cannery Row, Of Mice and Men and, of course, The Grapes of Wrath. The book is called Sweet Thursday and it's a cracking read full of characters, humor and a fair amount of Hooptedoodle. This book was written in 1954 but you'd swear in many cases he was talking about what's happening to us right now. The details are so truthful and universal.

Chapter 24 - "Waiting Friday" opens with a simple paragraph in which he sums up the day that ends our working week:

Not Everyone believes that Friday is unlucky, but nearly everyone agrees it is a waiting day. In business, the week is really over. In school, Friday is the half-open gate to freedom. Friday is neither holiday nor workday, but a time of wondering what Saturday will bring. Trade and amusement fall off. Women look through their closets to see what they have to wear. Supper is leftovers from the week. 

Beautiful isn 't? What 's more it's as true today as is was in 1954. Now here's how Rebecca Black sums up the same day.

Yesterday was Thursday, Thursday
Today i-is Friday, Friday (Partyin’)
We-we-we so excited
We so excited
We gonna have a ball today

So what am I saying? Are we watching - and listening to - the slow death of culture? Well maybe. No I'm just saying that maybe we could benefit from watching a little less youtube and reading a few more books. If anything it will make your conversations more interesting.

1 comment:

  1. Your sentiments are very close to mine, and unlike me you've managed to make your point without whinging!
    Great words Nick, (and you've quoted some fine ones too!)