Remember the early 80’s documentary Koyaanisqatsi? It is a superb film. It was the first in the Qatsi trilogy of films; and is followed by Powaqqatsi and Naqoyqatsi . The trilogy depicts different aspects of the relationship between humans, nature, and technology. In the Hopi language the word Koyaanisqatsi means "crazy life, life in turmoil, life out of balance, life disintegrating, a state of life that calls for another way of living".
This week I read something that, for me, captured the essence of “Koyaanisqatsi” in our time. Just after reading one more article about certain of our fellow citizens vehemently objecting to the use of Merry Christmas in public displays and greetings, I checked out Rolling Stone Magazine’s Top 50 Hits of 2010. It’s my way of determining just how far I’ve slipped out of the pop culture mainstream. Fortunately I still recognize about half of the artists. Rolling Stone gave me a break this year. I mean the top 10 included Kanye West, Katy Perry, Sade and Mavis Staples. It also helps that Rolling Stone includes pictures of the artists.
So what do objections to Merry Christmas have to do with the Rolling Stone Top 50?
The title of the Number 2 song of the year is “F**K You”. The artist is Cee Lo Green (real name Thomas DeCarlo Calloway). I recognized his picture as the guy who sang “Crazy” by Gnarls Barkley a few years back. "Crazy" is a terrific song and this guy has a great voice. You can go on-line and listen to “F**K You”. There’s even a video. I recommend the video version. Rolling Stone noted that “Cee Lo didn’t just say "F**k you" — he said it with humor and serious panache.”
Have you heard or read of any objections to this song? I haven’t. Maybe it’s just me, but isn’t there something wrong when more people are upset over “Merry Christmas” than “F**K You”? I don’t know, perhaps we need to learn how to say Merry Christmas with more humor and some serious “panache”.
Koyaanisqatsi: crazy life, life in turmoil, life out of balance, life disintegrating, a state of life that calls for another way of living. Let's start by saying Merry Christmas and say it like we mean it…with some serious panache.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
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