Tuesday, July 17, 2007

happy belated birthday to me...

They live by the beat like you live check to check

So what I did last year was post a verse describing the feeling of turning 20 from the flawless "Illmatic" LP. Sadly, there are not any verses I know about turning 21 (possibly because so meany rappers fall off before then), but I will try. OutKast released "ATLiens" when they were 21, and I like those guys, so here are some verses from "13th Floor/ Growing Old":

Dearly beloved we are gathered,
like soap is to lather we come clean
Some issues need to be addressed like envelopes I mean
Oh like Liberty Bells yes them bullets keep on rangin
On fire like the Georgia mass choir we keep on sangin
Bringin our folks closer together
cause they severed us from the get green
Light and we ain't gon' stop until we hit the big screen
Psych because no one is free when others are oppressed
So, we hit the stage and then we fly back to our nest
Growing old

Like some eagles, people don't understand
Just like their parents don't be carin
I'm speakin about you playin with that phony stuff you sharin
in your raps Mercedes Benz and all your riches
Thinkin you got it, but get it get it, but you ain't pimpin no bitches
Cause you flaw, in, fallin like leaves into driveways
Isn't it lovely smokin good and sloppy head on highways
Friday's are tight but Saturday just makes it old
When tonight's are hot warm enough to feed your soul
Growing old

You can figure out for yourself which member wrote which snippet, the point remains the same. Growing old really is not all it was cracked up to be when you were 10 or 12, at least in my estimation. People you know have grown up at a scary rate (marriage, kids ah!), while others refuse to change at all, and very few people are growing at their own pace without interference from society's pressure. I guess because I turned 21 I should be "living it up" and doing what ever I feel all the time, because there are no consequences, right? I don't know if I buy that based on the way things have worked out for people I know. Parents and older adults always tell young people to enjoy the moment, but sitting here writing this, I am reminded of Yoda in "The Empire Strikes Back" teaching Luke on planet Dagobah, "You must unlearn what you have learned." He also gives the most useful advice I have learned this summer (before I came out west):

Ready are you? What know you of ready? For eight hundred years have I trained Jedi. My own counsel will I keep on who is to be trained. A Jedi must have the deepest commitment, the most serious mind. This one a long time have I watched. All his life has he looked away... to the future, to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was. Hmm? What he was doing. Hmph. Adventure. Heh. Excitement. Heh. A Jedi craves not these things. You are reckless.
The idea of living for the moment is nice, though I think it should be reworded to get people to understand that where you are now sort determines your future, Or, to quote Qui-Gon Jinn, "your focus determines your reality." What I mean to say is that just enjoying the moment is not enough, you need to be aware of yourself all the time to do what you want. But of course, I know nothing, and I am quoting a puppet and Aslan. Seeing as how this is my last summer free of any real responsibility, I have planning to do, and the more I think about it, the more daunting it becomes. Sure, I have plenty of help, but what if I want something different for right now than my advisers? Or what if I am wrong, and go down a path that leads me to the exact place I promised myself I would never enter? I apologize for the vagueness, but I like to keep my internet life somewhat private. Looking at Yoda's speech, I am left wondering what I should want, or if I should even go out looking for something. (I'm sorry, this is going to get ridiculous) I think Yoda and Qui-Gon would tell me to listen to my feelings to do what's next, and not go searching for something I crave that may or may not exist. I know there's some quote about the Force and your feelings, but I am too lazy to find it and I've done enough quoting for the night. I'll figure out what's next, somehow. I hope.

So anyway, what did I do for my 21st? I was sick, so I stayed in. But today...

Blam. These suckers are comfy. And incredibly simple. But mine have green soles. Hopefully I'll be here on Saturday, exercising my age to catch up on the many concerts I've missed. There better not be a lot of hipsters there, or heads will roll. All right, one. Oh, and Jason, feel free to contribute any time.

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