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Gwen Stefani’s break onto the music scene would forever be intertwined with her first love, Tony Kanal. From their successes in No Doubt to their break-up which led to the pop star finding her voice. Eric Stefani, Gwen’s brother, formed No Doubt in 1986 along with Adrian Young, Tom Dumont, and the bassist Tony Kanal. Gwen Stefani and partner Blake Shelton spend time apart due to busy work schedules. The No Doubt singer is spending time away from her beau Blake as they both work on their musical careers - with ... Gwen Stefani & Blake Shelton with her kids. Credit: MEGA Gavin recently spoke up about his split from Gwen in a new interview where he didn’t exactly have the greatest things to say about the ... Hollywood’s famous ex-partners Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton are under the spotlight after the former got pregnant with twins. Allegations on Stefani are of the news that she broke up with Blake just before she got pregnant with twin boys. The split took place months before the pregnancy announcement. Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton are all smiles during a date night at the 2019 premiere of Bennett’s War in Los Angeles. “Blake & Gwen are happy to finally be in their new home and all settled ... Gwen Renée Stefani, 48, was born October 3, 1969 and is an American singer, songwriter, fashion designer, actress, and television personality. She is co-founder and lead singer of the band No Doubt. Gwen Stefani left fans in hysterics as she photoshopped Blake Shelton into an old picture with her ex-husband. Taking to Instagram on Wednesday, the singer uploaded a sweet shot with her new man ... Gwen Stefani announces final dates for Las Vegas residency. Read More. Target Celebrates 20 Years of Designer Partnerships - Harajuku Mini. Read More. All News . Featured Video. Gwen Stefani Just a Girl Vegas - Planet Hollywood Las Vegas. CuZoEFrIM9OJpq_j. All Videos . Store. THE SWEET ESCAPE HOODIE. Buy Now. Buy Now. Gwen Stefani is a great American public figure who is known for her songs, portrayals and movies too. She has sold over 30 million albums till date. She has sold over 30 million albums till date. Gwen Stefani is an American singer, songwriter, actress, television personality, and fashion designer. Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton's relationship. Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton first met on the set of The Voice in 2014. At the time, Stefani was still married to Rossdale, and Shelton was married to fellow country singer Miranda Lambert.
Specifically a producewriting partner, but also people that'd record for or play live for me like pedal steel players, fiddlists, etc. Linked is my most recent video, a cover of Gwen Stefani's Cool, which I produced myself. I make pop music with an 80s/90s country vibe but I have a wide variety of interests & influences. Message me here or on my Instagram (@jsigna) if you're interested https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=trEhE7wweKM
2020.07.21 12:46 carterwyatt1HOW TO GET THE 1990’S STYLE
90’S FASHION (HOW TO GET THE 1990’S STYLE) The saying “what is going round comes round” can be supposed to explain karma however it additionally works flawlessly to give an explanation for the cycle of style. Trends and patterns that had been as soon as taken into consideration current and bold turn out to be antique and ugly, simplest to be reborn and re-worn a long time later. And that cycle appears to be turning faster than ever. Less than twenty years later, style that changed into taken into consideration cool within side the ’90s is cool as soon as again. Whether it’s at the catwalk, on the road or within side the stores, ’90s tendencies are acting anywhere. So, include the ones crop tops, chokers, and Doc Martens, and we’ll display you the current manner to rock them. Here is our manual to ’90s style and the way to put on it nowadays. Fashion withinside the Nineties Fashion withinside the Nineties introduced forth a youngsters motion and presented carefree patterns that dabbled in rebellion. Grunge and minimalism had been the principle tendencies of the last decade with hip-hop and “horny schoolgirl” patterns additionally 90s trending. Designers inclusive of Marc Jacobs and Alexander McQueen pioneered grunge and took thought from the gritty streets. Supermodels had been traded in for a brand new breed of waif fashions with Kate Moss, and her “heroin elegant” appearance, main the pack. Everyone desired to emulate Moss’s “too cool to care” ’90s fashion, and style featured this mind-set. Music and style additionally went collectively as fanatics copied the precise varieties of their musical idols. 90s Outfits Long earlier than thin denims had been everyone’s go-to denim fashion, flared and wide-leg designs reigned supreme. Thanks to a desire for outsized and unfastened silhouettes, those pants had been rather desired at some stage in the ’90s outfits. Their informal aesthetic made them ideal for daywear, however those must-have pants had been additionally on display at night time with crop tops. To rock flared denims nowadays, take into account deciding on a cropped fashion to offer this appearance a current update Chokers When it got here to add-ons withinside the ’90s, chokers had been “it”. These collar-like necklaces sat tightly across the neck and introduced an edgy detail to clothes. While many had been fabricated from stretchy plastic and designed to resemble a tattoo, others boasted a material creation and featured charms and jewels. In 2020, chokers are nicely and definitely again in style and may offer quite a number clothes with a elegant ’90s touch. Hoop Earrings Chokers weren’t the simplest object of jewellery to attain top recognition withinside the ’90s fashion. Hoop jewelry additionally had a primary second at some stage in the last decade. Worn through girls anywhere, those ring-fashioned jewelry introduced mind-set to lots of clothes. The simplest rule at the same time as sporting this sassy earrings object changed into to lead them to as massive as possible. After all, what’s the factor in sporting earrings, if it doesn’t make a statement? Crop Tops To put on the ’90s appearance in 2020, a crop pinnacle is a must-have. These midriff-baring tops had been an vital style object for girls residing withinside the ’90s and are on-fashion as soon as again. Today, you may relive the pleasant style from the last decade through pairing a crop pinnacle with a couple of mother denims. This elegant aggregate is a favourite of celebrities and avenue fashion stars alike. To make the appearance current, simply change cropped camisoles for quick t-shirts, sweaters and tank tops. Overalls If you lived via the ’90s, the probabilities are which you wore overalls. These sleeveless denim jumpsuits had been an vital style object for the last decade and worn through each girls and gentlemen anywhere. No longer only for farmers, the ’90s made overalls a informal and snug cloth cabinet staple. To rock this appearance in pure ’90s fashion, strive partnering a couple of conventional blue overalls with a crop pinnacle and sneakers. Scrunchies If you had been getting dressed within side the ’90s, your outfit didn’t give up together along with your clothes. It ended together along with your hair. Far from boring, ’90s hair featured add-ons and, of course, scrunchies . Scrunchies had been a favourite style object of the last decade and finished many clothes. From easy satin patterns to glamorous velvet designs, scrunchies had been to be had in quite a number alternatives and may be worn with a ponytail, bun or pigtails. 90s Shoes Like the clothing, the footwear of the ’90s fell into the equal fashion categories. The grunge motion created an navy of women and men alike sporting heavy-duty, fight boots. They had been tough, gritty and coupled with the whole lot from slip clothes and florals to flannel shirts and frayed denims. The minimalist fashion additionally had its staple shoe withinside the manner of Birkenstocks. Simplistic and snug, Birkenstocks got here in a whole lot of patterns and hues however nonetheless had that uniform experience. Platforms had been popularised through the pop song scene, in particular, the Spice Girls. Converse’s Chuck Taylors, Manolo Blahnik’s Mary Jane fashion footwear, and conventional pool slides had been additionally on excessive rotation. https://coastalcoziness.com/90s-fashion-how-to-style-90s-trends-in-2019/ 90s Hip Hop Fashion If you weren’t rocking a grunge or minimalistic fashion withinside the ’90s, you had been probable wearing a hip-hop outfit. Popular in city areas, hip-hop style changed into represented through overside, unfastened silhouettes, informal fabrics, and sports activities details. Like grunge, the fashion corresponded with the song style of the equal name. As such, hip-hop stars had been icons of this fashion and furnished the pleasant outfit thought. 90s Grunge Fashion The ’90s anti-style mind-set culminated in grunge fashion. One of the maximum desired seems of the last decade, grunge gave style an edgy and mind-set-stuffed makeover. In current seasons, the go back of grunge fashion to recognition has been obtrusive at the streets and the runway. From ripped denim and saggy tees to plaid shirts and layered slip clothes, vital grunge gadgets are on-fashion as soon as again. 90s grunge fashion 90s Celebrity Fashi Celebrities had been the fashion icons of the ’90s. Musicians, actors and the strange version stimulated the sartorial alternatives of a generation. Outfits had been copied and patterns recreated, all at the same time as by no means failing to rejoice individuality. Everyone desired to appear like their favored musician, be it Britney Spears, Madonna, Gwen Stefani or one of the Spice Girls. Britney presented the schoolgirl appearance at the same time as Gwen Stefani promoted grunge, and Madonna had her unforgettable Jean Paul Gaultier cone bra. The Spice Girls celebrated originality with every boasting a one-of-a-kind persona. And every ’90s female knew which Spice Girl she changed into, whether or not it changed into Posh, Baby, Scary, Sporty or Ginger. Kate Moss changed into the remaining fashion queen at the same time as Drew Barrymore and Winona Ryder had been simply as fashionable off the display as they had been on. 90s Fashion Trend To put on the ’90s style fashion nowadays you want to remodel patterns in order that they may be applicable in nowadays’s culture. Instead of copying seems precisely as they had been withinside the ’90s, recreate them in a current and up to date manner. The trick is to seize that “too cool to care” mind-set of the ’90s at the same time as searching sparkling and on-fashion. To do so, mixture conventional ’90s portions like crop tops or chokers into your regular cloth cabinet with thin denims and heeled boots. Alternatively, pair your favored new get dressed with a ’90s half-up coiffure or upload layers through sporting a t-blouse underneath. Either manner, have a laugh together along with your fashion and include the carefree, younger experience of the ’90s. here
2020.07.16 22:36 AustralianChronoVirtual Drag Race Season 9- Episode 5: The Rich Ball
All four Queens deliver different styles. Leilani has the dance moves and a flawless lip sync; Gianna serves legendary lip sync status; fierce, fun and powerful. She delivers the ROCK. Exo gives a frantic, energetic performance... but it ends up being... perhaps too much. And in all the fuss, Grey gets a little lost. I've made my decision. Leilani... wow. Shantay you stay! Leilani Blu: "I feel satisfied. To be the first one to be called safe... it's validating." ...Gianna Vers Chachi, Shantay you stay. Gianna: "Another lip sync so soon... I need to step it up... and quickly." Exo Dust and Grey.... Sashay Away. "A double elimination..." Priya whisper to Dixie. "All the better for us..." "True..." Dixie shrugs. "...Thank you for this opportunity." Grey smiles. Exo is silent. She nods. Grey and Exo Dust: "Well, it's over!" Grey sighs. "I'm upset to have gone so early... but at least I have a partner along my side." Exo looks upset. "I had a lot more to give. So for it to end so soon... is a shame." ~ https://preview.redd.it/9tdlxdbv87b51.png?width=900&format=png&auto=webp&s=c4f5aa4064643348911dd56d5dd4bbd2207e7c83 "Wow...." Miserie sighs when she enters the werkroom. "That... was one insane lip sync." "Two big losses." Leilani sighs. "But Exo just got... far too in her head. And Grey... bless her, but she just didn't step up enough." "So, what are you going to do about your performance then, Leilani?" Priya laughs playfully. "The SHADE!" Fracker yells. "Nasty Queen." Leilani winks at Priya. "So rude, you are, Priya." Saint rolls her eyes. "God, do you not understand a joke?" Priya looks at Saint. "Seriously. Did you not realise that we were playing?" "It doesn't seem that way." Saint crosses her arms. "First of all. You have no idea, because you don't have a comedic bone in your bod-" Priya is interrupted. "This is totally untrue." Saint sighs. "I just..." Leilani walks off to de-drag. Leilani: "Let's be real, I don't need to listen in that nonsense. But... Priya is right. I have one high placement, but now... I have a bottom placement. So compared to a lot of the other Monarch's... i'm not in the best place. I need to kick it up... and quickly." ~ The Monarch's enter the werkroom the next day. Gianna sits with Leilani. "Do you get the vibe that... cliques have formed overnight?" Gianna Vers Chachi: "It's weird. There's this vibe in the air... and right now, I'm certainly feeling a little bit... vulnerable." "I do..." Leilani raises her hands in the air. "I don't even know what to do.." "Gianna, come sit with us!" Saint gestures over Gianna. "Join them?" Gianna laughs. "YO LEILANI!" Iris smiles at Leilani, now sitting alone. "Come!" "Am I going to regret this?" Leilani looks dead into the camera. "Hey guys..." Lelani smiles. YOU'VE GOT RU-MAIL! Gems. Diamonds. GOLD! If I was a Rich Man... Yubby dibby dibby dibby dibby dibby dibby dum. "A Musical Reference!" Saint grins. Saint St Frostfur: "As a Musical Theatre Professor... I have an inherent need to prove any references to musical theatre." "I thought it was a Gwen Stefani song?" Gianna looks confused. "It actually sampled the original musical song, from the musical 'The Fiddler on the Roof' from 1964." Emma responds. "You're a musical theatre Queen Emma? I had no idea..." Saint looks at Emma. "I'm an everything Queen." Emma grins. HELLO HELLO HELLO! My Monarch's... This week, we're getting straight into it. For this week's maxi challenge... it time for a BALL! Miserie Mistress: "I made it to the BALL! Yay!!! This is a challenge I know I can do really well in. I have a team of friends who I can go to for feedback. And I definitely have the skillset to do this really well, I think." Miserie looks excited. This time around... It is The RICH BALL. Dedicated to... what else, but Opulence and Money? You will be putting together 3 looks. Sugar Baby Realness, Dripping in Diamonds, And... using GOLD (Materials)... 'I Love GOLD!' Eleganza Extravaganza! The Aspect of Wealth's eyes light up. The Aspect of Wealth: "I'm... I'm me. Come on. This challenge is perfect for my aesthetic. I can prove myself and make some fantastic social commentary at the same time." ~ As they're getting ready, Dixie is listening to the lip sync whilst preparing her outfit. "What are you listening to?" Leilani looks at Dixie. "The Lip Sync song. I'm not the most confident for this challenge... but I think I can do this lip sync well at least. Because let's be honest. I'm a fashion Queen in some ways, but I am definitely not a sewing Queen..." Leilani looks at Dixie. "Let me help you sew..." "Are you sure? Do you have time?" Dixie looks at Leilani. "Of course, for a sister." Leilani smiles. "I love you, you skinny little bitch." Dixie laughs. As they're getting ready for the challenge, Wealth, Iris and Priya are chatting. "So, Wealth if you don't mind me asking..." Priya smiles. "When did you realise you were Agender?" "From a young age." Wealth says, putting in gold coloured contacts. "It was interesting, as someone who grew up poor... black... and not a hetrosexual cisgendered person... just existing in the space I was in. I faced.. a lot of discrimination." "That's upsetting to hear." Priya looks at Wealth. "I'm sorry." "No need to apologize. It taught me to be the person I am today. I guess that's why I ended up presenting my drag as... Wealth. Class Warfare is something I faced from my youth. And then, it was me against the... Cisgendered White Gay Community, typically, as controversial as it is sometimes to say. I am just lucky to have found my Haus." "You are all legends." Priya smiles. Iris looks slightly uncomfortable. "Hey Iris, you got pretty quiet there. Is everything okay?" Wealth looks at Iris. "Yeah... I'm fine. Just not like... the biggest fan of that lovey-dovey stuff sometimes." Iris shrugs. "I'm going to uhm... go put on my dress." Wealth and Priya look at each other. "Well, that was a bit strange." Priya turns to Wealth. "Did we... say something?" "Nothing I thought was bad..." Wealth looks confused. ~ Who wins this week? Spreadsheet
2020.05.17 22:22 TheRoyalGodfrey[DISCUSSION] Snoop Dogg - BUSH (5 Years Later)
Bush (stylized in all caps) is the thirteenth studio album by American rapper Snoop Dogg. It was released on May 12, 2015, through Doggy Style Records and I Am Other, and distributed by Columbia Records. The album was produced by Pharrell Williams with additional production by Chad Hugo. It features guest appearances from Kendrick Lamar, Stevie Wonder, Charlie Wilson, Gwen Stefani, T.I. and Rick Ross. Bush was the first album by the rapper after his return to the hip hop moniker Snoop Dogg. Bush was supported by three singles; "Peaches N Cream", "So Many Pros" and "California Roll". The album received generally positive reviews from critics, debuting at number 14 on the US Billboard 200, and number one on the US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums. It serves as the follow-up to Snoop's twelfth studio album Reincarnated (2013).
Background and title
On August 28, 2014, a video was released of what would be a preview on one of the songs working together between Snoop Dogg and Pharrell Williams. In September 2014, Snoop announced on his Instagram account, his new work together with Pharrell. The LP is the first studio album entirely of hip hop released by Snoop since Doggumentary (2011). Since then, Snoop alongside his good friend and rapper Wiz Khalifa, released the soundtrack Mac & Devin Go to High School. This collaborative album contains the hit single "Young, Wild & Free" (top ten in the Billboard Hot 100). The song was nominated for a Grammy under the category of Best Rap Song. In 2013, Snoop then used his new moniker Snoop Lion, and released his first reggae and twelfth overall album Reincarnated. This album was nominated at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards in the category Best Reggae Album. At the end of 2013, he then used another moniker Snoopzilla, in reference to Bootzilla, and joined with music producer Dâm-Funk to launch the entirely of funk collaborative album 7 Days of Funk. In January 2015, Snoop revealed the album's title at the Convention Consumer Electronics Show that occurred in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States. The track "So Many Pros" was originally a track recorded by Timbaland and featured Pharrell Williams and Justin Timberlake, called "Been It", however, due to Timbaland's album being cancelled Pharrell re-worked the final track, in which Chad Hugo, Charlie Wilson, Pharrell and Rhea Dummett featuring as backing vocals. The video was also shot for "Been It", with amateur footage showing Timberlake recording his portion of the music video whilst on The 20/20 Experience World Tour and Timbaland recording his portion on a beach with skantly clad models. The lyrics to the song seem to have remained unchanged, however the lyric "...so many hoes" has been changed to "...so many pros" which is the title of the track itself.
The album was produced by Pharrell Williams, with additional production by Williams' Neptunes partner Chad Hugo. The duo had worked in partnership with the rapper on Paid tha Cost to Be da Boss (2002), R&G (Rhythm & Gangsta): The Masterpiece (2004) and Tha Blue Carpet Treatment (2006). The partnership between these two artists has earned several singles of successes for both Snoop Dogg and for Pharrell, including "From tha Chuuuch to da Palace", "Beautiful" and "Drop It Like It's Hot", among others.
"Peaches N Cream" was released on March 10, 2015, as the first single from the album. The song features guest vocals from Snoop's longtime collaborator Charlie Wilson. The lyric video was released on the same day. The song peaked at number 16 on the US Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles. The album's second single, "So Many Pros", was released on April 14, 2015. The music video won an MTV Video Music Award for Best Art Direction, during the ceremony on August 30, 2015. The album's third single, "California Roll", was released on May 5, 2015. The song featuring vocals from American R&B singer Stevie Wonder. The single peaking at number 15 on the US R&B Songs.
Bush received generally positive reviews from critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream publications, the album received an average score of 69 based on 20 reviews. David Jeffries of AllMusic said, "Accept Bush is a delayed dank disco triumph, and then drop it like it's hot, one more time." Brian Josephs of Consequence of Sound said, "Although it's well-intentioned, you're very aware that the only reason you're at this party is because Snoop invited you." August Brown of the Los Angeles Times said, "There aren't many '90s rappers who could credibly settle into a sound like this, but Snoop is an excellent student of his formative musical era." Kate Hutchinson of The Guardian said, "Bush is a high five of an album, made for hydraulic cars and throbbing dancefloors, delivered, in typical Snoop style, as if from a fur-lined throne overlooking a pool party." Kellan Miller of HipHopDX said, "Snoop and Charlie Wilson play off each other's energy, and the instantly catchy nature of the track justifies the notion that the diminished returns of Bush are the result of an excellent dream deferred by poor execution." Phil Hebblethwaite of NME said, "Snoop takes a surprising back seat, singing low in the mix and seldom rapping--an odd decision, but it works and when Bush is good, it's an absolute joy." Jonathan Frahm of PopMatters said, "All in all, Bush is another consistent release from Snoop to add to his portfolio, with enough freshness to still be spinning his name in the clubs." Roger Krastz of XXL said, "Overall, Bush is a fun and enjoyable listen from start to finish with the album's retro imagery brought to life by Snoop Dogg and his slick persona." Julian Kimble of Pitchfork said, "While Bush is strong enough musically, you can't help but wonder what would've happened if this crew had followed R&G with a full-length a decade ago, when everyone involved was still in his prime." Brittany Spanos of Rolling Stone said, "From the moment opening track "California Roll" hits its "Drop It Like It's Hot"-ish bass line, Bush is a pleasant stroll down memory lane." Kris Ex of Billboard said, "It's a quick listen, clocking in at less than 45 minutes, and the 10 tracks are laid-back--perhaps too much."
In the United States, Bush debuted at number 14 on the US Billboard 200 with 32,000 album-equivalent units, which included 27,000 pure album sales, marking the third highest debut of the week and the eighth best-selling album of the week. The album was also streamed 2.8 million times in the first week. It serves as Snoop's sixth solo album to debut at number one on the US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums. Bush dropped to the number 44 in its second week, earning an additional 12,000 album-equivalent units, which included 9,000 pure album sales. In the United Kingdom, the album debuted at number 25 on the UK Albums Chart. Bush was Snoop's tenth solo album to debut at top-ten on the UK R&B Chart, reached at number two. As of May 2016, the album has sold 250,000 copies worldwide.
2020.04.29 01:34 CyrusWaugh(Almost) Every Pop star collaboration ranked
Pop stars in country songs, that has become the biggest trend these days, 2018, it was making wedding songs, 2019 was talking about how country somebody was, and 2020 is making sure you have a major label pop artist on your song, literally go through the years and the number of these collaborations just get bigger and bigger, I’m sure it was noble early on to have a pop star on a country song, and it had more meaning back then as it was a rare occurrence, nowadays it honestly lost its meaning, oh wow, this artist is on this song, nowadays, I’m not shocked they are and I’m not excited that they are. Florida Georgia Line started this downwards spiral of collaborations and this trend is far from evaporating, so I’m going to rank all these collabs and stars making “country music”. However Old Town Road is not on this list, because people know at this point it isn’t country and realize it was never intended to be released as a country song, it’s it’s own entity and we should leave it that way, so let’s get through this as I say which ones work and which ones don’t. There are some I may forget, these songs are just off the top of my head.
I was considering whether or not it deserved its own spot, as this dude isn’t signed to a Nashville label, and I don’t want to give this song any buzz, the more buzz you give a song like this whether you’re saying its good or bad makes it trend, and this a song I don’t want to trend whatsoever, its getting ready to drop off the chart as they are releasing a version with Sam Hunt all of a sudden hoping it gives it a shred of streams. I don’t like trap music whatsoever. However I know when a song is doing something right, even trap. This isn’t the case in the slightest, the song is boring, its trap beat is extremely weak. And I’d honestly call it a snap track rather than a trap song. The song’s structure doesn’t make sense, and the lyrics are just drab, and trap lyrics are drab but this takes it to another level. I think its is going to be forgotten once hormonal teens stop using it on tik tok. And hopefully this will send country trap into the forgotten abyss along with bro country.
Back Porch Bottle Service-AJ McLean
I feel like this would’ve been a successful hit in the late 90’s but releasing in the late 2010’s was a mistake. This is forgettable in almost every aspect. The melody in stupid, lyrics just scream desperate. And the production is extremely terrible. I don’t have much to say about, I can’t find anything profound, or interesting to talk about it, it is a blank slate of a song, which explains why it is stuck at the bottom with My Truck.
Coming Home-Keith Urban ft. Julia Michaels
The opening piano chords make it seem like a reflective mature song, and then you get the insult that is the bastardzation (is that even a word) of the chord of Mama Tried by Merle Haggard, one of the most beloved country songs of all time, they literally copy and paste that chord and tear it to shreds. They do the same thing with the chorus, it isn’t that bad of a song, it is just bland, but its that chord that infuriates me, there are some lines you don’t cross, that is one of them. Julia Michaels sounds like she’s grasping for breath when she comes, but when we get to the chorus she sounds fine. It’s just a mess, a mess I don’t really feel that invested in.
This Is Us-Jimmie Allan ft. Noah Cyrus
I know songs from Phineas & Ferb with this narrative that sound way better, and I’m not joking, there are a lot of Phineas & Ferb songs that are really good. Basically what I’m saying is: go watch Phineas & Ferb, its not just for kids and also watching that is better than listening to this pile of vanilla. There is nothing truly wrong, it just is an overproduced song that does nothing. The lyrics don’t feel relatable. The lyrics are incredibly simplistic as well as the melody. If you’re gonna do straight up pop music then at least make it sound good, the top 40 has a bunch of songs teeming with life like Circles or Blinding Lights. If you want to bastardize a genre at least put in the effort.
Lost In The Middle Of Nowhere-Kane Brown ft. Becky G
I don’t really know much about this one, I think it is bland, I think it has interesting words and is pretty catchy, but I don’t really understand what this song is about, I think it has the same narrative of Lose It. That’s it, it’s bland. It likes to repeat lyrics several times, and if I don’t have much to say in terms of a song from here on out, I’m implying there is nothing to take from listening to it whether that is good or bad.
The Champion-Carrie Underwood ft. Ludacris
Cry Pretty was a really bad album, I’ll even say it is the worst album in Carrie Underwood’s catalog and possibly the worst mainstream album of 2018, and its because of songs like this. It wants to be this big workout song, I’ve seen better attempts at this like God’s Country, or Loud & Heavy (I use them as workout songs don’t judge me) I will say Ludacris does a pretty good job. I like how they use Champion as an acronym, but Carrie just doesn’t bring it at all, one of the weakest vocal performances from her. One of the best voices in music overall went to making some of the most drab music.
Take Back Home Girl-Chris Lane ft. Tori Kelly
This is a really cheesy song. Everything about this song is extremely cringey. This feels like a song that has the same narrative as a stereotypical small-town boy & girl hallmark film. It follows the standard checklist of boyfriend/bro lyrics. I’m not emotionally invested in the story, and Chris Lane just doesn’t sound good and nor does Tori Kelly which is honestly shocking.
The Bones-Maren Morris ft. Hozier
Out of all the artists available you got Hozier. Look I don’t like that The Bones is number one on the country charts, but I think The Bones is a solid pop song, similar to my opinion of Body Like A Back Road. Maren Morris definitely has an earworm with this song, its become the biggest hit of her career since My Church. I just do not like Hozier on this, his voice is so annoying on this track, everything works with this song, I admit I slightly enjoy this song. But I hate the version with Hozier. I think he doesn’t harmonize with Maren Morris at all. I’m glad this was the first number one for a woman since 2015, I would’ve preferred More Hearts Than Mine or I Hope You’re Happy Now but what are you gonna do.
The Other Girl-Kelsea Ballerini ft. Halsey
I’m infuriated they made this the next single rather than Half Of My Hometown, Halsey is going to get the most buzz, so I get why. This is bad vocally, and production wise it is nothing special, however lyrically it is interesting. I’m actually impressed in terms of lyrics. What I really enjoy is lines like whose the diamond whose the pearl. If they changed the melody and production I would enjoy this way more, but I can only take it as the overall package which is why it isn’t in the top 10.
Cool Anymore-Jordan Davis ft. Julia Michaels
Jordan Davis normally does a good job in terms of crossover songs. This isn’t really the case, I like how they say you don’t have to be cool anymore, but they repeat that so many times, take a shot every time they say that, you will be wasted. It is way too repetitive for my taste. I’m not keen with the production here either, whereas on other songs like Single You Up or Take It From Me, it is really fun. Here it is just too forgetful.
Nobody But You-Blake Shelton ft. Gwen Stefani
I’m surprised this song is succeeding as well as it is. It is a mess all over the place, but it is a decent mess. I hate when people bring up roads nowadays, that is the one thing no matter where this genre goes will stay, whether its bro pop or boyfriend country, that one aspect stays no matter what. I don’t really like Gwen Stefani in the song. He’s written way better songs for his partner like God Gave Me You, a far better song than this. This can only dream to be as good as it. I think this song is pretty catchy but I’ve never imagined people would enjoy this song as much as God’s Country. So kudos to Blake Shelton, he’s back in a very big way, I wish I could say the same for Miranda Lambert.
Last Time I Say Sorry-Kane Brown ft. John Legend
Eh I like it to a degree, It is way too simplistic for my taste. I would love for them to say what actually happened but if you can’t, why create this song in the first place? What are you sorry about, I need to know these things in order to relate to this song. I think John Legend sounds pretty good, his voice is amazing, can’t really say the same thing for Kane Brown, he rarely uses his bass voice anymore, which is where Kane Brown shines, it is a good pop song, but why not put this on the pop chart, this would succeed way more there, its not me complaining that its on the country chart, it isn’t insulting enough for me to hate it, you’re losing money putting this primarily on country radio. I don’t get labels sometimes. I thought their number one goal was to make money not lose it.
10,000 Hours-Dan + Shay ft. Justin Bieber
This isn’t as bad as many people say, and its not as good as many people say. It’s a song that plays it safe, if this was released in 2010, this would’ve succeeded as much as it does now, there is nothing outlandish about this song but nothing profound either, its an earworm sure, but it’s a cheap love song. I scratch my head when I think about this song, cause its not a 5/10 or worse nor a 8/10, I am all over the place when talking about this song. It has banjo sure, its not a snap track so I’m not gonna complain, I say let it be .
You Should Be Sad-Halsey
This is a diss track. This feels more like a rock song more than anything, I like this song quite a bit, I like the lyrics a lot. They are really hurtful and full of pain sadness, and especially bitterness. I think it is a bit simplistic melodically. I get what’s going on with her and G-Eazy so I can empathize as well. This makes Gaslighter look like a fit compared to this song.
One Thing Right-Marshmello ft. Kane Brown
The further we go, the more bombastic the songs. Its not “I Got Away With You” but it is solid, I like the guitar throughout. Lyrically its okay, it’s not a simplistic song like a lot of this list. But my favorite thing in a song is lyrics and I usually am never satisfied with these pop crossovers. I don’t like Kane Brown’s voice in a majority of his new releases, he tries to sing like a pretty boy, instead of the rugged bass voice he is.
Women-Florida Georgia Line ft. Jason Derulo
I’ve gone on record saying that Women is in fact a good song, but it came out at the worse time, where for the very first time there was no women in the top 20 radio, and you release a song about loving and appreciating women. That was a major mistake. I think out of all the songs about loving women, this was the best. I wasn’t the biggest fan of Women Amen and I really didn’t like Female by Keith Urban. However I like this song a lot because it sounds like a legit R&B song, not a defective clone, not a poor copy, just a solid R&B song. I like the lyrics Jason Derulo brought to the table. This is one of the rare occurrences where a snap track works, I like the vocal power they bring, so this song gets a thumbs up from me. Just they shouldn’t have released it when they did, because it backfired.
Setting The World On Fire-Kenny Chesney ft. P!nk
I’m not he biggest fan of the intro, the drum loop feels so cheap, however the first few lyrics make up for that. Chesney doesn’t do the best job vocally but P!nk makes up for that, she sounds great. Pretty much make this a P!nk song and get rid of Kenny. I’m sorry but he doesn’t sound good on this track. Kenny’s too old to reach those high notes so I get why its happening. It’s a nice middle lane song that I can get behind
Meant To Be-Bebe Rexha ft. Florida Georgia Line
To follow up u/Notwith10000men just because I don’t like a song, doesn’t mean its not good. This is in fact a good song, but it is ridiculous that this song is considered country, I get why it was number one for 50 weeks, look at the streams and sales, and I understand why it was as successful as it was, it is a jam, and sure it is the poster boy for every pop crossover, having a snap track, talking about how they love a girl and wanting to get her on a road in 2 minutes and 45 seconds. Pardon my French but the song just slaps. I’m not just primarily invested in country and I know a good pop song when I see one. I enjoy it a lot, because it does pop right unlike so many other rejects on the country chart trying to achieve the same exact thing. Florida Georgia Line don’t really offer much, that’s why it is credited to Bebe Rexha. I wish the duo could do more, because they are capable of doing it, I just hate that it denied so many good songs in 2018 a number one spot.
Heartless-Diplo ft. Morgan Wallen
Diplo doesn’t have a place in country music, but nonetheless, this is pretty fire. I can’t believe I’m using all these unprofessional words, but I have no other way of describing this. Everything just works, it moves fluidly, Morgan Wallen brings it with his raspy vocals, the second verse is just insanely catchy. Sure it is a standard break up song with nothing truly unique, but the way they move the words is done so well, mostly because Diplo is a pop artist who actually knows what he’s doing (except on do si do which is hideous) I don’t see it as country, but similar to Women by FGL I see this a pop song not a cheap knock off.
Cruise (Remix)-Florida Georgia Line ft. Nelly
I’m probably over ranking this but I don’t care. I know the original is far better, but there is just something that brings me back to the remix, I was not a fan of a lot of the songs being put out overall in 2013. So the remix was a nice thing to hear on the radio, everything non country just didn’t click for me but this did. Nelly does a good job with this song, because he’s a professional rapper, Tyler Hubbard needs to stay away from rap, after 3 tracks of him doing it, he is just so bad at it. Out of all the remixes of country songs like Tequila and Dirt Road Anthem, this is by far the best.
Keeping Score-Dan + Shay ft. Kelly Clarkson
This is a bit overlooked with all the hits these two have. It isn’t an overproduced boyfriend song, or a wedding song. This is more in every aspect, it has Dan + Shay’s vocal power, nice lyrics, it has a simple message of living life to the fullest, Kelly Clarkson and the duo blend amazingly. Kelly Clarkson is probably my favorite out of all the female features. This reminds of a song by Rascal Flatts, back in the day they were known for creating power ballads. The bridge is pretty repetitive so that docks it down a bit. But this is one of the best songs in Dan + Shay’s catalog as 90% of their stuff is so vanilla. Check it out, you won’t regret it. And my favorite pop collab is:
Say Something-Justin Timberlake ft. Chris Stapleton
In order to make a good collab you need two people who understand the genre and are truly passionate about it. These two are those type of artists, Justin and Chris care deeply and that care created this song, it is a rootsy smash. It isn’t an overproduced vanilla track nor a laid-back reflective song. Both blend to create a beautiful harmony. I still don’t know what this song is about, but I truly don’t care. The music video version adds another layer of praise, as it is more grounded in terms of instruments and production. Its ironic how the one guy who refused to go with the norm, created a traditional masterpiece went on to have the number one country album of the decade, and got to collaborate with some of the biggest names in music. While everyone else scrambled to be just like these pop stars and got nowhere.
Blake Shelton is a diagram besting blue grass music star likewise known for showing up on TV's 'The Voice.' Who Is Blake Shelton? Conceived in Ada, Oklahoma, in 1976, Blake Shelton moved to Nashville when he was 17 to turn into a blue grass music musician, and by 2001, he was a star in his own privilege with the No. 1 hit "Austin." Success followed Shelton for the following quite a long while, right onto the training/making a decision about board of TV's The Voice in 2011. A beneficiary of various honors, Shelton discharged his eleventh studio collection, Texoma Shore, in 2017. Early Years Blake Tollison Shelton was conceived in Ada, Oklahoma, on June 18, 1976. By the age of 16, Shelton visited the bar circuit, gathering statewide consideration and winning the Denbo Diamond Award, the top honor for youthful performers in Oklahoma. Two weeks in the wake of moving on from secondary school, in 1994, he moved to Nashville to dispatch a songwriting vocation. Collections and Songs 'Austin,' 'All Over Me,' 'Ol' Red' When he hit Nashville, Shelton sold melodies he had kept in touch with a few melodic distributing houses and handled a performance recording contract with Giant Records. His style was a customary blend of manual stone melodies and nation numbers, and he before long beat the blue grass music outlines with the tune "Austin," which held the No. 1 spot for five weeks. In 2002 he hit the outlines with his self-titled introduction collection — discharged by Warner Bros. when Giant Records broke up — and the singles "All Over Me" and "Ol' Red" helped the collection accomplish gold status. The Dreamer,' 'Unadulterated BS' In February 2003, Shelton discharged The Dreamer, and its first single, "The Baby," came to No. 1 on the down home music graphs, holding tight for three weeks. The second and third singles from the collection, "Overwhelming Liftin'" and "Playboys of the Southwestern World," each broke the best 50, and The Dreamer went gold. In 2004 Blake Shelton started discharging a string of hit collections, starting with Blake Shelton's Barn and Grill. The second single from the collection, "Some Beach," turned into his third No. 1 hit, and the singles "Farewell Time" and "No one however Me" arrived at top 10, sending the collection to gold status. Alongside the collection, Shelton discharged a going with video assortment, Blake Shelton's Barn and Grill: A Video Collection. Unadulterated BS was discharged in mid 2007, and its initial two singles, "Don't Make Me" and "The More I Drink," were both top 20 hits on the nation graphs. That equivalent year, Shelton made his unscripted television debut, showing up first as an adjudicator on Nashville Star and afterward on Clash of the Choirs. 'Startin' Fires,' 'Stacked' Red River Blue' and Becoming a Judge on 'The Voice' In 2011 Shelton turned into an appointed authority on the TV singing rivalry The Voice and appeared his new collection, Red River Blue, which turned into his first Billboard 200 No. 1 collection, appearing in the top spot. The collection additionally brought forth three No. 1 singles, "Bumble bee," "God Gave Me You" and "Drink on It." In 2012 Shelton marked on for season 3 of The Voice. He likewise discharged an occasion collection, Cheers, It's Christmas, in October 2012. 'In view of a True Story' In 2013 Shelton discharged his eighth studio collection, Based on a True Story..., and entered his fourth season as an appointed authority/mentor on the hit unscripted tv arrangement The Voice. Individual Life Shelton wedded Kaynette Williams in 2003, however their association didn't keep going long. The pair separated in 2006. In 2011 Shelton wedded long-term sweetheart and blue grass music star Miranda Lambert. In 2012 Shelton and Miranda performed together at Super Bowl XLVI. In July 2015, Shelton and Lambert declared they were getting separated following four years of marriage. "This isn't the future we imagined," the couple said in an announcement. "What's more, it is with crushing sadness that we push ahead independently. We are genuine individuals, with genuine lives, with genuine families, companions and partners. Consequently, we mercifully request protection and empathy concerning this exceptionally close to home issue." Shelton before long rediscovered sentiment with individual artist and The Voice judge Gwen Stefani. In late 2017, the nation star added another honor to his assortment as People magazine's "Hottest Man Alive." Reflecting his comical inclination, just as his amiable contention with Levine on The Voice, he reacted to the news with the jest, "I can hardly wait to push this up Adam's a**."
2020.02.29 05:04 pupicles[REVIEW] 🦖🦖 SLG’s GALORE 🦖🦖Celine Medium Strap Wallet, Gucci Men’s Leather Bi-Fold Signature Wallet, and Fendi Baguette Belt from my BFF5L TS Anna
HI FRIENDS. So first let me say that the first haul binge is fucking REAL folks. This whole new world of luxx has cracked wide open— RIPE for the taking. So just call me a farmer ladies, because I am READY TO HARVEST. Here I am again to review the second package I’ve received, and perhaps to everyone’s delight or dismay, THIS REVIEW SHANT BE MY LAST. I grouped all three into one review for a more entertaining reading experience, you’re most welcome.
Seller’s name: TS Anna (our friendship is truly blossoming as I manage to keep contacting her about new purchases almost on the daily now…)
Price of Celine Medium Strap Wallet: 630CNY - 63 - 158 RL 10% discount
Price of Gucci Men’s Leather Bi-Fold Signature Wallet (what a fucking mouthful): 360CNY - 36 RL 10% discount
Price of shipping: so I originally paid for EMS (311CNY) for these three items and the delicious YSL bag I reviewed previously, but Anna switched it to DHL for me for no cost when I changed my mind later, bless her. Order timeline: for more context about the order timeline, see my previous review! Placed order 1/22; received PSP’s for Celine and Gucci wallets 2/7; Fendi belt PSP came 2/10, I GL all immediately; all three items shipped 2/22; DHL SORCERY ~~~ package arrived 2/26!!
Seller Communication and Service - 10/10
Anna is just the absolute best. My friendship (however one-way it is), is absolutely riding high right now. I shit you not I have texted her at least once a day ever since she started up and shipping again LOL. She’s always working when I’m maybe having a glass of wine (or two… or three) and decide to make some impulse purchases and it’s truly like working with a personal shopper via text. She’s just amazing and I could not recommend her more. My bff5ever.
So u/preoccupiedwithlove JUST reviewed this exact wallet from Anna (omg Anna’s cheating on me) see here and for the most part it seems like they’re basically the same, which is good for consistency. Mine didn’t smell like fufu at all though, just leather. Perpetually on a straight up leather high these days, BUT MY JUDGMENT IS SOUND I SWEAR. I am a creature of touch (my boyfriend’s a lucky guy amirite 😉) but in all seriousness, in my opinion the most important thing a rep must have is quality. Because a lot of what makes some of our reps so amazing and accurate is that they use same level of quality materials as the auths do. This wallet is no different— I am straight up feeling up this wallet in my bag all day. It is SO soft and it’s got a good weight to it like the auth does and it looks really well made. The sides of it are nice and smooth, well glazed like a fucking Krispy Creme. I’m deducting 0.2 because there is a lil thread raised on the inside of the strap, which is nearly impossible to photograph and therefore, nearly impossible to notice really and care about beyond this obviously very serious quality assessment.
Accuracy - 8.5/10
I will start this by saying that I fucking love this wallet and will use it until it dies because it’s a WALLET and no one’s going to be IN my bag like that. If they are, I got some pepper spray in there as well for you THIEF. For the sake of research, however, I’ll be tough. I’m a researcher of much more boring things by day; YSL HOE BY NIGHT. So this is a pretty good rep in terms of quality (which you now know I care passionately about) and the logo looks correct, really clean, and properly placed. But some things when comparing to the auth aren’t quite there. -1.0: The biggest issue for 1:1 is the strap. It is just glaringly not the same LOL but that’s how it is in the factory photos so I knew this going into it that it wasn’t going to be perfect. But in person, it is even more noticeable than expected lmao. Strap should be more shiny and pointed. Given that this is a big part of the wallet, I deducted a full point. -0.50: The corners of the wallet are super pointed when they should be more rounded like in the auth. I think they should blunt over time but for now, they’re pointed like nipples out on a cold ass winter night.
*GUCCI MEN’S WALLET *
Quality - 10/10
I’ll keep this one short (I know my audience 💅), but this wallet is titstastic. If you’re looking for a gift for your partner, or if you enjoy a lil bifold action yourself, LOOK NO FURTHER. This wallet in my eyes is pretty 1:1. Quality is just like the auth (at least for now, no telling about longevity yet) but we felt the real one up extensively and this leather is exactly the same. Stitching is good and wallet is sturdy. BF says the leather is a bit tight around the cards right now, but should loosen over time as the leather softens up. I already got another one for my dad (gotta share the love 🥰🥰).
Accuracy - 9.8/10
As I stated previously, the wallet is exactly the same as the authentic. As far as luxury items go, the authentic goes for around $350, which is not that much at all relative to the auths we’re usually working with that are chilling in the thousands. So it’s not surprising that the auth is just not an impressive piece in general. So having it be perfectly repped is not surprising if it’s just a matter of making a standard cowhide leather wallet and getting the embossing pattern correctly (which it is). Logo stamp inside also looks right on. The -0.2 deduction comes from the fact that when there aren’t any cards in the wallet, the inside left pockets of the wallet look slightly slanted, but once the cards are in, completely not noticeable and look rightly aligned???! It’s some kind of sorcery that I’m just not going to think too much about and did not photograph in detail because I could be leather-high and I’m not even sure if I’m correct about it because my bf doesn’t see it LOL.
*FENDI BAGUETTE BELT *
Quality - 10/10
It’s a sick ass belt guys. ** Imagine me holding the belt like a large meatball sandwich and just sniffing it from one end to the other *. *aaaaaahhhhhhhh The belt fits perfectly (when in doubt about size let Jesus/ Anna take the wheel), and both the hardware and leather feel sturdy/ not cheap. Stitching is clean everywhere, it’s amazing.
Accuracy - 9.6/10
It looks ON POINT to the auth. I’m deducting 0.2 because the “made in italy” stamping is a toooouuch messy/ not clear but the inside of the belt is literally against my body while being worn. You already know my thoughts on anyone who be up in my grill like that to look at it. HEY, I HAVE A BOYFREN OK. The leather is a tooouch stiffer than the auth as well but I’m going to condition it (bc WHY THE FUCK NOT) and I’m sure it’ll soften up with use.
Satisfaction - 10/10
I am definitely, definitely satisfied. Even with inaccuracies, you just can’t beat the price for the quality we’re getting. It’s truly BANANAS. * cue gwen stefani * I’ve only ordered black somewhat simple designed reps thus far, since I thought that it’d be best to get my feet wet with items/colors I knew would be easier to rep. Also I’ve been pretty safe in ordering stuff that has been reviewed A LOT (u know I love my research). But now, I’m going balls to the wall friends. For the sake of science, and for the sake of my newly minted YSL HOE religion (shoutout to u/gracefullyrach for coining this), I will suffer whatever beautiful consequences may come from my adventures into the rep world. AMEN. 🙏🏽🙏🏽 XOXO PUPICLES
2019.12.17 20:14 jayjaysortagayWINNERS SEASON 2020 - Week 9
Back in the werkroom, the girls are gagged that three queens returned and two were eliminated. Alaska, Violet and Aquaria are not happy that Sharon was eliminated. They think Sasha stole her spot. Monet suggests that The Vivienne was saved. Trixie says she actually thinks Monet was lucky and The Vivienne should have won. The atmosphere is tense. WEEK NINE - DRAG ME TO THE MOVIES! The queens pair up to create their own fake movie trailers based on their adventures in drag. The returning queens get to pick their partners. Monet X Change picks Bob the Drag Queen. Sasha Velour picks Alaska. Tyra Sanchez picks The Vivienne. Jinkx Moonsoon pairs up with Aquaria.
Trixie Mattel pairs up with Violet Chachki.
RUNWAY THEME - RED CARPET GLAMOUR The girls emerge for critiques after walking the runway. Ladies, tonight you will be judged as pairs. Monet X Change andBob the Drag Queen, You slayed the challenge but your runways were better suited for radio. You're safe. Alaska and Sasha Velour, Your movie trailer had us dancing in the aisles. Condragulations, you are the top two of the week. Jinkx Monsoon and Aquaria. You're safe. Now to the bottoms. Trixie Mattel and Violet Chachki, Your runways may have been fierce but when it comes to your comedy, you slipped on a banana peel and fell flat on your face. Tyra Sanchez and The Vivienne... You had some clever one liners but your onscreen chemistry was nonexistent. Tyra Sanchez and The Vivienne, you're safe. You may step to the back of the stage. That means Trixie Mattel and Violet Chachki, you are up for elimination. Oh, and one more thing... I'm ready to see you girls fight for your place in this competition. From now on, I will be deciding who is eliminated from the competition after seeing you lipsync for your LIFE. Sasha Velour, you are the winner of this challenge. You win a cash tip of $25,000 Trixie Mattel, Violet Chachki, prior to tonight you were asked to prepare a lipsync to "Hollaback Girl" by Gwen Stefani. Good luck... and don't fuck it up. TBC Poll: http://www.polljunkie.com/poll/pfyxmo/winners-season-2020-week-9 Spreadsheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1EQpenLI7pYmhxoE663xrgnPelsW0NZZJuSvDvysIwLA/edit?usp=drivesdk LIPSYNC PLAYLIST: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/6AAqk4HhLECeODudu6lY61?si=A7r8-DNuRIKIAxJPuSfIVA
2019.12.08 03:47 ThrowAwayMyDressI Want To Make This Easier For Us ~~Both~~ All
Hello, Potential Partners!
Firstly, I'd like to apologize to everyone I ever left hanging. I hate how it feels, and I'll try to always let interested parties know when I can't reply. That said...
I'm a friendly, flexible writer. When I say "prefer" or "preference", those aren't euphemisms; I will sometimes go against my usual habits if I think it makes for more fun or interesting scenarios.
I have passion and talent, but I often lack time. This is at odds with my preference for a more thoughtful style. I guess the silver lining is that it forces me to practice balancing being succinct with my preference for aiming for a visually evocative style.
I'm hard on myself and very easy on my partners. At the end of the day, I feel that it's really all about the flow of emotions--sharing and achieving intent. I don't need perfection, just a good enough understanding of what you mean to keep us rolling in the same direction.
Everybody's got their own opinion about my gender identity. I'll hear you out, but I'm in not much of a mood to argue or justify anymore. For your purposes here, I'm genderfluid with a preference for feminine roles.
Role-wise, I'm a switch who tends to like playing dominant women and submissive men. But, again, I'm flexible.
I used to play cis-women more, but lately I prefer retaining male genitalia because it's easier and people remain surprisingly fixated on having your meatspace physical attributes carry over to fantasy.
I have no personal attachment to any particular tense or POV. First person? Third person? Past? Present? What do you want? What will keep you from ghosting me? Let me know!
I'm even willing to play multiple characters when time allows. I'm a bit more writer than roleplayer
Kinks and prefs in no particular order:
Playing aggressive women
Playing bratty subs
Playing eager subs that take initiative to please their dominant
Being a dominant dickgirl
Costumes and uniforms and partners who don't mind me getting self-indulgent with the details.
Lingerie and clothed fucking.
Lapdances, belly dances, strip teases descriptions of dancing in general
Hold the moan, Orgasm Control, tease and denial, milking, and endurance games in general
Struggling to speak calmly during orgasm or while on the verge
Sex while multitasking(not quite bored and ignored)
Bound sex, whether riding the roper or being ridden while bound
Superpowers (I'm especially fond of playing variations of "horny dominant superheroine forces herself on a helpless civilian or enemy while trying not to accidentally harm them")
Conversations while fucking
Saying questionably inappropriate things while fucking
Playing people possessed by horny non-human entities or playing said entities wrestling with my partner's character for control.
Body control without mind control
Cuckold/cuckquean scenarios(I could be in any role; I'm a bit curious about playing out scenes watching a non-white lover with a white bull)
Public play/Risky scenarios
Chikan and reveese chikan scenarios
Playing as harems or reverse gangbangs
Rule 34 Characters I Like to Play: Hela(MCU), Overwatch(All of the female characters, either of the Shimadas, Junkrat or Bastion if I feel like being silly), Satsuki Kiryuin, Mako Mankanshoku(KLK), Enchantress(DCEU).
Limits: I don't like scat or gore. My feelings toward snuff scenes are complex. I don't like overly visceral takes on it; those just disturb me, as does the concept in general. But I have sometimes felt stirred by scenes that emphasize risk, punishment, futility, and the assassin's domination--more like the "feel" of more conventional takes on succubus/incubus dynamics, even in non-supernatural scenarios. Rimming isn't my favorite. No underage stuff. I might entertain some piss scenarios for the right person or prompt. I tend to dislike my primary character being completely naked for the entire scene though it's negotiable.
Celebrities: I will borrow appearances, but I don't feel comfortable trying to actually play most celebrities. I do, however, have an incomplete list of certain ones I like the idea of my character resembling.
Lisa and Jisoo from BlackPink
Oh, and apologies to anyone who's offended by this, but we're talking about what I want here. Feel free to fetishize the fuck out of me while we're playing together. Want me, fear me, do both and a little more while we're here on DPP. :)
2019.10.26 23:17 KorvarHalloween Week! My thoughts!
Week 4Week 5Halloween Week! Good fun Group Dance there. ...Is Bruno’s Halloween costume just his normal clothes? Terrifying. Also, two injuries! This show can be tough… Emma and Anton: Tango to Toccata and Fugue in D Minor by Bach Classy music choice. Should be interesting to see how they Tango-ify this. My initial thoughts are she looks a little wooden – but I don’t know if that’s the story they’re going for? Hard to tell what’s deliberate and what’s not. But it looks snappy and fast for all that. Not as firey as I’d like from a Tango, which I think they could do, even with this music. Scores: 5 (!) 7 8 8 Total: 28 Will and Janette: Jive to Casper by Little Richard Sadly, Will was injured in Studio, and couldn’t dance :( Get well soon, Will! Emma and Aljaz: Charleston to* A Little Party Never Killed Nobody* by Fergie feat. Q-Tip and GoonRock This is a lot of fun :) Emma’s certainly enjoying herself – must be nice to have a dance she where can smile all the way through :) Great choreography, clever lifts. Full on Charleston, great to watch. Maybe some might see it as slightly elegant for a Charleston, but that just suits this choreography. Scores: 6 8 8 8 Total: 30 Chris and Karen: Samba to Everybody (Backstreet’s Back) by Backstreet Boys Another odd music/dance combo. Chris doesn’t have the confidence and gusto you need for these dances – he really looks like he’s just stepping through the moves, except for the occasional section. Having said that the side-by-side section was actually pretty good. And the ending was a big of a car crash :D I’ll not count that bit as the music had ended by that point! Scores: 5 6 6 6 Total: 23 Saffron and AJ: Jive to Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic by The Police Oooh, she’s really sharp with her kicks and flicks! This really suits her! It’s a really fast routine as well, and she’s keeping up with AJ. Very, very good. Liked the bit with Craig and the skeleton hand too :) Scores: 8 8 8 9 Total: 33 Mike and Katya: Tango to What You Waiting For by Gwen Stefani I’m still waiting for him really drop the dad-dance look, and unfortunately, it’s not today. But his frame looked pretty solid. Craig’s going to have things to say about his free hand, I suspect. You’re definitely not getting the fire and passion that you need for a Tango. He’s improving, but still pretty stiff. Lots of content, though. Scores: 6 6 7 7 Total: 26 Karim and Amy: Paso Doble to Smalltown by Boy Bronski Beat Weird music/theme/dance combo. Hard to see Karim as a strong matador in that wig. He looks about twelve! But wow, he’s really going for it. Shaping looks pretty good, and he’s giving it a tonne of attitude. I think he should get an extra point just for projecting that much machismo through his costume… That was really good. Some of the criticisms could be directed at the choreography rather than Karim’s performance, I feel. Scores: 7 7 7 8 Total: 29 This is where couples can be in trouble – very high scores, and now he’s down in the middle. Catherine and Johannes: Cha ChaCha to Scared Of The Dark by Steps I really love watching these two. They’re clearly having the best time out there! No idea of the technicalities, but her personality is shining through. Not sure of the footwork, but so much fun to watch. Lots of energy! Scores: 6 6 5 7 Total: 24 Michelle and Giovanni: Foxtrot to the Addams Family theme by Vic Mizzy Slightly sad it’s not a Tango. However, I shall forgive them this once. It’s beautifully smooth, as you’d expect from Giovanni. Michelle really brings the elegance, too. Lots of content, and it all looks amazing. So stylish. Scores: 9 10 10 10 Total: 39 Kelvin and Oti: Tango to Bad Guy by Billie Eilish Ooh, this is stylish and gothic. Very sharp and loads of snap. Passion and attitude. Great speed, and amazingly theatrical. Gosh. Very good. Scores: 9 9 9 9 Total: 36 Alex and Neil Kevin: dance a Couple's Choice (Street/Commercial) to Ghostbusters by Ray Parker Jr. Kevin is subbing for the injured Neil, apparently at very short notice. Oh, man, she’s looking good here. This sort of thing really suits her down to the ground. Fast and frenetic, lots of tricks and attitude. Her personality really shines through. Love the ending! Amazing! You could see Kevin struggling to keep up! Scores: 7 9 9 9 Total: 34 Favourite has to be Alex and Kevin. Astounding, given how she had to swap partners at the last moment and still smashed it. Close behind would be Kelvin and Oti, just for the style factor. My choice for Dance Off: Mike and Katya / Chris and Karen. Even given how both of them are improving week on week, someone's going to get left behind and I feel it’s these two right now. So, what did you think? Agree with me? Disagree? Let me know!
2019.10.24 07:43 DerrylliusKlyneTales from the man with cold hands: Afternoon Drive
Oct 23 2019 Family and I went for a drive today. Out to farm country. Decent little jaunt, sun setting, nice weather if not a bit cold. Winter is coming, all the grass is brown now. And then the feeling. The sensation, and I can feel the pull. Becoming familiar. My imp cowers but for a moment - silent to witness my own other demise. The imp is aware of what is about to happen in some way, but has to witness it regardless as I do. After all, I am driving and cannot take my eyes off the road, regardless of what is happening around me. Seconds pulled into moments of searing memory. Reality: travelling 100km (65miles~) p/h on a single lane highway with long harvested canola fields on either side of us, the sparse treeline sporadically visible. There is a line of traffic following a large red semi in the opposing lane about 1km/1/2m away. The next turnoff is in 8~km/5mi away. Overlap: Same location, same scenario, but just slightly up and to the left. Enough to give a blur effect, but easy enough to ignore. However, the Large red semi blows a tire on the passenger side. Truck immediately bites the asphalt, tearing in and causing the truck to pull into the ditch. The semi driver is reacting too hard, pulling the one remaining wheel into oncoming traffic (ie: me). I can see the sparks from the large metal bumper, cockeyed and careening in a drift, tearing up the road with a nasty scar. The drivers face beholds panic and horror as his overcompensation combines with the jack-knife effect, beginning the roll. Reality: Ricki Martin is blasting out Livin la Vida Loca. My child is in the carseat happily shaking the water bottle and bouncing along to the rythm. My partner is singing along with a smile on their face. It's a goofy song and usually I am belting it out with them in a variety of voices (because I cannot sing). I am silent, however, as I maintain reality at the forefront and the visions of demise on the side. I cannot help but bear witness. I am thankful at this moment for cruise control and a steady grip. Overlap: (me) attempts to react to the situation happening in front of me. Hard, short pull left to break the momentum with a stun on the breaks to maintain control. Change direction due to Semi driver over-compensation, Short pull right to stabilize and set course to the ditch. Fail to have noticed the Jack Knife effect. Fail to have noticed Semi is carrying a tanker of what I can assume is explosive liquid. Attempt to change course again further into ditch. Fail to notice all the intricacies of said ditch at the moment, hit something hard with drivers side tire. Begin sequence flipthatbitch.gif. Reality: A single tear rolls down my left cheek. I cannot blink or move my head, grateful that our route is mostly straight lines. Almost in paralysis, my personal thoughts pushing forth all my focus on the road ahead and perseverance to protect my family. My partner has noticed my odd behavior, and began playing "What you waiting for" by Gwen Stefani. I love singing this song while pretending I'm Tim Curry. I do not do it well, but I love doing it. I remain silent. Overlap: The minivan containing my family flips over a few times very quickly, before coming to an abrupt shift in direction due to impact with the tail end of the semi tanker. The roof above the drivers side and most of the door and (middle wall panel/frame between driver and middle of van) are removed with due haste. Rather than flipping, we switch to doing aerial 360's. Through the wreckage I can see bits of windshield moving like water droplets through the van. Half of the sky turns orange while the other half remains bluish. Reality: Gwen Stefani called me a stupid hoe. Overlap: The van hits the dirt and rolls over again before stopping on its 'tires'. Substantial damage has reduced the undercarriage to just... undercarriage. The semi has rolled over behind me and detonated in a way that only pressurized fuel can attain. The flames are spreading and following a trail that extends past the ditch. Somehow, I manage to survive the ordeal, and fall out of the vehicle gasping for air. I can tell there are some serious injuries in my left arm and left ribcage. My legs hurt pretty bad, but still work. I can't breathe through my nose, and am sitting on the grass stupefied - poking my broken nose with a finger bent at a grotesque angle. The moment snaps back and I remember my family. Attempting to stand, I nearly double over but manage to catch myself. As I right up once more, my peripherals notice the wildfire has gotten close. In my non-peripherals, I can see the van is smoking. My mind snaps to attention and begins to process information as rapidly as possible. I move forward, hustling my battered body to move faster than it can, throwing me off balance. But it doesn't matter, just get to the doors and get my family out. Around the front of the radiator and I have to move away from the steam. Cinder enters my nostrils, and I assess again as quickly as I can. Passenger door: Crumpled and bent. Baby side door behind passenger: Might be openable. Best option. I take a step and see my partner - face down, unmoving. I cannot deny that it is definitely blood and not transmission fluid. It unnerves me a moment and I stumble, falling away from the van. One misstep and I am in the dirt again. Reality: My partner just asked our child to stop kicking the seat when rocking out. We have travelled far past the point of the overlap, but part of my mind is still there. Still holding. My ribs hurt and my left arm has fallen asleep. I can tell that the overlap is almost finished. Lines of the other reality begin to blur. Gwen Stefani is eagerly anticipating what I am waiting for. Overlap: The stumble down hurt more than I would of considered. I may have a collapsed lung. But it doesn't matter - parental instincts kick in and I force myself to my feet, gasping like a fish. I reach out for the handle with several realizations: The ringing in my ears is being replaced by a child screaming The smell of cinder and petroleum is very strong My vision is becoming dark near the edges with little yellow dots There is alot of smoke in the air. I can't make sense of the realizations due to panic and actions of survival. I grab the doorhandle and throw it open with all the strength I can muster, and the door gives way sliding open. I have to step forward with the door due to injuries and the angle of approach, lest I fall over again. But it doesn't matter. Not anymore. When the door opens, before I could see my childs face, the fuels ignite and the inferno of demise bursts forth from all angles. I don't even hear a scream; just a muted and deafening roar as my vision fades to shades of radiation and nothingness. Reality: We are past the entire line of traffic. probably 2km/1.5 miles away now. My partner looks at me with concern in their eyes and a smile on their face. My child is giggling happily. Gwen Stefani wants lots of brand new things. I pray for the me I witnessed, and (my) family. I am sorry for your (my) loss. Thank you for letting me (you) be a part of it. Nobody wants to die alone.
2019.10.09 04:49 NotWith10000MenFive country and country-adjacent albums made Pitchfork's 200 Best Albums of the 2010s
...and I did all the scrolling so you don't have to. 196: Miranda Lambert, The Weight of These Wings.
For the first half of the decade, Miranda Lambert was a country superstar with a string of radio hits, a recurring spot on The Voice, and a picture-perfect marriage to fellow singer Blake Shelton. But when they divorced in 2015, the breakup encouraged her to go down a darker, more existential path. Her ambitious double album The Weight of These Wings carries on in a grand tradition of messy relationship statements: It has the grit of Tom Petty’s Wildflowers and the uncertainty of Bruce Springsteen’s Tunnel of Love, wrapped up in Lambert’s fiery, down-home charm. Its songs are torch ballads and highway anthems with a live band that feels borne of late night jam sessions, raw and unglamorous. For Lambert, redemption comes from buying a cheap pair of plastic sunglasses, by spending late nights alone at the bar, in knowing that she alone controls her destiny. Legend has it, she hung up on the first interviewer she spoke to about the record—the question was about Shelton’s new partner, Gwen Stefani—and decided that she would do no press surrounding the album, letting the music speak for itself. “All you had to do was listen,” she said. And the music says it all.
177: Margo Price, All American Made
Margo Price toiled for years to become an overnight sensation: Her acclaimed debut Midwest Farmer's Daughter, released in 2016 on Jack White's Third Man Records, came out after she had spent more than a decade in the Nashville trenches. But that album was a Trojan horse for the thornier sentiments she would smuggle onto the airwaves and stages with her follow-up, All American Made. Price mingles the political and the personal until they're indistinguishable on songs like “Heart of America” and the barnstormer “Cocaine Cowboys,” leading a band that draws on old-school honky tonk rhythms without coming across the least bit revivalist. “Pay Gap” couches its income disparity blues in flourishes of accordion and Lone Star guitar, while the Dylanesque title track wanders a desolate America as Price wonders if her pain—all our pain, actually—might be specific to this place.
173: Hurray For The Riff Raff, Small Town Heroes
Alynda Lee Segarra had been releasing albums under the name Hurray for the Riff Raff for years before her ATO Records debut, Small Town Heroes, introduced the Bronx-born, Louisiana-based singer-songwriter to the world at large. A former freight train jumper and street busker, Segarra collects sounds and melodies like postcards from across America, mixing rhythmically lurching New Orleans R&B, rural blues, and Appalachian stomps into a new form of roots music. Small Town Heroes consists mostly of traveling songs—reflections on life as a touring musician—but also the thoughts of a woman who has spent most of her adult existence in transit. She's seen jubilation, tribulation, and cold-blooded murder, but Segarra keeps wandering, as though she can't wait to see what's over the next hill or around the next corner. “We might not be here when next year comes,” she sings on “Small Town Heroes.” “You better live it like you’re on the run.”
162: Sturgill Simpson, Metamodern Sounds in Country Music
Sturgill Simpson’s music is rooted in modern country, but he’s also part of the proud heritage of “cosmic country,” a spacey descendant of Rhodes scholar Kris Kristofferson and Kahlil Gibran-quoting Willie Nelson. On his breakout album, Metamodern Sounds in Country Music, Simpson braided together no less than Jesus, Buddha, and “reptile aliens made of light” in the very first song. From there, the Kentucky native managed to dig deeper into his earthy roots of while also wandering even further into galaxy-brain thought. Simpson still refuses to be penned in and Metamodern Sounds in Country Music is when he started to elevate.
23: Kacey Musgraves, Golden Hour
With Golden Hour, Kacey Musgraves burst the country music bubble, welcoming a rainbow of humanity to join her rousing chorus of “when I say yee, you saw haw.” Her third record draws on pop and country sensibilities to document falling in love—and staying there—with remarkable clarity and a lingering sense of wonder. A noted fan of story songs, Musgraves knows that sometimes, the story is as simple as how flowers look on the walk to the bar. On an album accessorized with disco beats and vocoder trills, even vibe-harshing characters like the know-it-all boor of “High Horse” get the glitterbomb treatment. There are pangs of anxiety, too—fear that the glow will fade, or that faraway family will slip out of reach—but they only make Musgraves’ bliss more believable, and the satisfaction sweeter.
https://pitchfork.com/features/lists-and-guides/the-200-best-albums-of-the-2010s/ I haven't listened to Hurray For The Riff Raff's album and I didn't recognize the artist, but I listened to a few songs and they sounded country-adjacent enough for me to inlude. If I missed any other country-ish albums, feel free to include them in a comment. Taylor Swift's Red album was also included at number 59, but I think I felt it was more pop than country the last time I listened to it so I left it off this post. So how do you feel about these five albums being on this list? Have you listened to them? Were they ranked fairly? Did Pitchfork snub any of your darlings?
Think this would be such a good episode hope you enjoy :) AS Winners Season - Episode 7 - Roast Battles: Alaska - AS2 (Safe, Win, Win, High, Win, Bottom) Trixie - AS3 (Safe, Safe, High, Win, Low, Win) Trinity - AS4 (Safe, Safe, Win, Bottom, Win, Win) Cracker - AS5 (Win, Low, Safe, Safe, High, High) Asia - AS6 (Win, Safe, Safe, Low, Bottom, High) 6) Monet - AS4 (Safe, Win, Bottom, Win, Safe, Elim) 7) Brooke - AS8 (Safe, Safe, Low, High, Elim) 8) Chad - AS1 (Safe, Bottom, Safe, Elim) 9) Peppermint - AS7 (Safe, High, Elim) 10) Jaymes - AS9 (Safe, Elim) The queens enter the work room where Trixie reveals she also chose to send Monet home, saying there was no way she could possibly send home Alaska with her track record. Trinity is emotional, saying that having a shared win with her means she feels some type of loyalty towards her but ultimately it is a competition. Cracker has a confessional saying “I feel like me and Asia are starting to fall behind and be overshadowed. This is the week I’m personally gunna make sure I bounce back”. Ru enters and says “Oh my top 5 Winners, I’m sorry to say....it’s battle time”. The eliminated winners then enter the workroom with the remaining queens looking gagged. Asia has a confessional saying “As winners I did not expect any bitches to be coming back again this season”. Ru announces that for this weeks challenge the girls will have to perform Roast Battles against each other in pairs with the recently eliminated girl choosing their partner first. The two best battle duos who do an amazing job of roasting each other will then win the challenge. The eliminated winners will then fight to return and choose who to eliminate. Monet & Trixie - Monet and Trixie do an incredible job together, roasting each other to filth. Trixie starts the roast by saying “Ladies and gentleman welcome to the stage, the only drag queen who could make Bob The Drag Queen seem like a good winner. It’s Monet X Change”. It starts off really funny and it proceeds to Monet saying “Trixie Mattel it’s so good to see you. No really, it’s good to actually see you away from Katya’s shadow”. It’s a really hilarious roast and they continue to go really ‘in’ with their jokes making the judges erupt in laughter. They have one moment where Trixie asks “So what’s it like to be part of the only double crowning?”. She responds saying “I don’t really know what’s it like to be the ugliest bitch in this joint?”. It makes the judges laugh a lot and they’re incredible together. Brooke & Alaska - This is also actually a really good roast, but it’s mainly because of Alaska. Alaska starts by saying “Brooke Lynne Hytes, the only heights you’ll be reaching tonight are to the top of those stairs to exit”. It’s really funny and Brooke responds saying “Alaska Thunderfuck, I’ve always wondered, why the last name when nobody could give a fuck about you?”. Alaska’s response is funny, playing on her AS2 roast saying “Burrrrn ouch. It’s really funny from Alaska, unfortunately she completely overshadows Brooke though and the judges are mainly only laughing at Alaska’s roasts. Chad & Cracker - Cracker actually does a decent job opening the show by saying “Chad Michaels is a legend in the making. And when I say in the making it’s because she’ll only shine once Cher drops dead”. It’s a really funny opening with Chad responding “Oh Cracker, if only somebody could crack your sense of humour. Where is she?”. It’s actually really funny at parts. However, after a while it starts to fizzle and the jokes between them seem to lose their focus and the audience begins to not laugh as much. Cracker stumbles at one point as well forgetting the joke she was about to tell. It started off great so it’s sad that it fizzled out towards the end. Peppermint & Asia - These two actually do a really good roast between them. Asia comes on the stage and starts pretending to choke. She then says “Sorry about that I was just choking on a mint. Just like Miss PepperMINT over here gunna be doing when I roast the fuck out of her” where she then does a hilarious expression. Peppermint responds saying “Girl I wish it was more than a mint you were choking on, this competition seems to have choked you already”. The panel find this absolutely hilarious and they really capture the comedy between them. Asia furthers it by taking her ear rings out and shouting “I will fight you hoe” which makes the judges laugh. At one point Peppermint walks over to Asia and puts her hand on her shoulder saying “Girl, you may have roasted me this week, but at least I ain’t been roasting no butterflies”. It’s really funny between them and they have great teamwork. Jaymes & Trinity - This is a complete flop of a roast battle that doesn’t go very well at all. Trinity starts the roast by saying “Well I was looking for a winner but all I saw was a first out” and glares at Jaymes. It’s not really that funny and the classic crickets noise is inserted in the background. Jaymes responds by saying “I may have been first out, I may have won, but at least I can say that crown was just mine” where she looks over at Monet. It’s really not that funny and the rest of the queens look a little bit confused about where they’re going with this. It continues like this with their roasts of each other not really landing. At one point Jaymes starts a joke as well and Trinity speaks over her a bit. It’s a bit of a flip between them both. Win - Trixie (Monet) and Asia (Peppermint) High - Alaska (Brooke) Bottom - Trinity (Jaymes) and Cracker (Chad) Monet and Peppermint speak to both Trinity and Cracker. Trinity is devastated, saying how she knows she absolutely flopped this challenge. She shows a fight though, saying that whilst this is her 2nd time in the bottom and Crackers first, she has won 3 challenges whilst Cracker hasn’t won a challenge since the very first week. She says to Monet that whilst she knows she sent her home the week before, it was only because she was against Alaska and any other time she wouldn’t have eliminated her saying that they share a bond as joint winners. Cracker is also really emotional, saying how bad she wants this to prove her Win was justified. She says that whilst Trinity has won more challenges, she doesn’t think that makes up for how much she flopped this challenge compared to her. She argues that she wants this so bad and is willing to prove herself in the future. Peppermint says it’s hard because she’s not seen the full competition, but she knows one queen has been performing better throughout and may have just had a bad day. Monet says it’s hard because she does want revenge for her elimination, but she also sees the fair side of things as well as having a connection with one queen. She says she’s undecided until she reaches the stand. Song - Hollaback Girl (Gwen Stefani) Ru reveals that they both smashed it out the park and for that reason will both be returning to the competition. If they both pick different queens then they will both be going home. Return - Monet and Peppermint Eliminated - Cracker
For each year in our tournament, I took the top 16 songs from Billboard’s Year-End Hot 100 chart (which measures a song’s overall popularity over the course of the year), and seeded them appropriately (so that the more popular songs have a slight advantage). Then, I took the output of the 16 years, and ran a tournament to find the best song of the 90s, the best song of the 00s, then pitted those two winners in the grand final. Note: In the filled-out bracket, we were mostly in agreement. When we absolutely couldn’t agree, we had to split. Splits are denoted by slashes; the song on top is d8uv’s choice, and the song on bottom is antarris’s choice.
Notes from the tournament
1992—Winner: “Under The Bridge”
End of the Road - Boyz II Men vs. I'll Be There - Mariah Carey
Under the Bridge - Red Hot Chili Peppers vs. All 4 Love - Color Me Badd
Baby-Baby-Baby - TLC vs. To Be with You - Mr. Big
Save the Best for Last - Vanessa Williams vs. I'm Too Sexy - Right Said Fred
Tears in Heaven - Eric Clapton vs. I Love Your Smile - Shanice
Jump - Kris Kross vs. Black or White - Michael Jackson
My Lovin' (You're Never Gonna Get It) - En Vogue vs. Just Another Day - Jon Secada
Baby Got Back - Sir Mix-a-Lot vs. Achy Breaky Heart - Billy Ray Cyrus
d8uv: Note: “Smells Like Teen Spirit”–you know, the song that changed the entire rock genre—only got up to 32. And yet, “Just Another Day”, a song that you have never heard of, was the 10th most popular song. What the hell was wrong with the people of 1992? antarris: Not everyone was an angsty white suburban teenager, you know.
1993—Winner: “Nuthin’ But A ‘G’ Thang”
I Will Always Love You - Whitney Houston vs. Dazzey Duks - Duice
Dreamlover - Mariah Carey vs. Rump Shaker - Wreckx-n-Effect
Freak Me - Silk vs. In the Still of the Nite - Boyz II Men
That's the Way Love Goes - Janet Jackson vs. Don't Walk Away - Jade
Weak - SWV vs. Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang - Dr. Dre
Can't Help Falling in Love - UB40 vs. Knockin' da Boots - H-Town
If I Ever Fall in Love - Shai vs. Informer - Snow
Whoomp! (There It Is) - Tag Team vs. Lately - Jodeci
antarris: I don’t even know who like a third of these people even are. “I Will Always Love You” nearly won my bracket.
The Sign - Ace of Base vs. Without You / Never Forget You - Mariah Carey
All for Love - Bryan Adams, Rod Stewart and Sting vs. All That She Wants - Ace of Base
Hero - Mariah Carey vs. Again - Janet Jackson
The Power of Love - Céline Dion vs. I'll Remember - Madonna
Stay (I Missed You) - Lisa Loeb and Nine Stories vs. Bump n' Grind - R. Kelly
I'll Make Love to You - Boyz II Men vs. Whatta Man - Salt-n-Pepa and En Vogue
Breathe Again - Toni Braxton vs. Don't Turn Around - Ace of Base
I Swear - All-4-One vs. Wild Night - John Mellencamp feat. Meshell Ndegeocello
antarris: The Sign was the first album I ever owned. I sang “Don’t Turn Around” in the shower through my mid-twenties. Sorry-not-sorry. d8uv: This was the year of Ace of Base, and as much as I love my trashy eurodance, the sound hasn’t aged particularly well. antarris: I live for my trashy eurodance. Fight me.
Gangsta's Paradise - Coolio feat. L.V. vs. Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman? - Bryan Adams
Take a Bow - Madonna vs. Don't Take It Personal (Just One of Dem Days) - Monica
On Bended Knee - Boyz II Men vs. Water Runs Dry - Boyz II Men
Kiss from a Rose - Seal vs. Freak Like Me - Adina Howard
Another Night - Real McCoy vs. I Know - Dionne Farris
Creep - TLC vs. Run-Around - Blues Traveler
Fantasy - Mariah Carey vs. This Is How We Do It - Montell Jordan
Waterfalls - TLC vs. I Can Love You Like That - All-4-One
antarris: “Waterfalls” is just a touch behind for me, probably because my little sister played it incessantly. She was seven. d8uv: Antarris called “Gangsta’s Paradise” out as “the only rap song every white person knows”. This was meant as a compliment, but I know better.
1996—Winner: d8uv: “Tha Crossroads”, antarris: “C’mon N’ Ride It (The Train)”
Macarena (Bayside Boys Mix) - Los del Río vs. Sittin' Up in My Room - Brandy
I Love You Always Forever - Donna Lewis vs. You're Makin' Me High / Let It Flow - Toni Braxton
Always Be My Baby - Mariah Carey vs. Missing - Everything but the Girl
Nobody Knows - The Tony Rich Project vs. Ironic - Alanis Morissette
Give Me One Reason - Tracy Chapman vs. C'mon N' Ride It (The Train) - Quad City DJ's
Because You Loved Me - Celine Dion vs. Exhale (Shoop Shoop) - Whitney Houston
Tha Crossroads - Bone Thugs-n-Harmony vs. Twisted - Keith Sweat
One Sweet Day - Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men vs. Follow You Down / Til I Hear It from You - Gin Blossoms
d8uv: When pressed for comment, all antarris said was “... it’s a choo-choo train.” antarris: Pure fucking lyrical genius. “Tha Crossroads” is my second favorite, though. d8uv: Still, I found myself honestly surprised at how much I liked “Tha Crossroads”.
Something About the Way You Look Tonight / Candle in the Wind 1997 - Elton John vs. Nobody - Keith Sweat feat. Athena Cage
Return of the Mack - Mark Morrison vs. How Do I Live - LeAnn Rimes
Can't Nobody Hold Me Down - Puff Daddy feat. Mase vs. MMMBop - Hanson
Un-Break My Heart - Toni Braxton vs. For You I Will - Monica
I Believe I Can Fly - R. Kelly vs. Quit Playing Games (With My Heart) - Backstreet Boys
I'll Be Missing You - Puff Daddy feat. Faith Evans and 112 vs. You Make Me Wanna... - Usher
Don't Let Go (Love) - En Vogue vs. Wannabe - Spice Girls
Foolish Games / You Were Meant for Me - Jewel vs. Bitch - Meredith Brooks
d8uv: This—like 1994—was a surprisingly weak year. Every matchup other than the final was super easy, and even the final wasn’t that hard. antarris: “Semi-Charmed Life” was #17. It would have won my bracket. I probably should’ve bought it instead of recording the video off MTV.
1998—Winner: “How’s It Going To Be”
Too Close - Next vs. My Way - Usher
Candle in the Wind 1997 - Elton John vs. Nice & Slow - Usher
How Do I Live - LeAnn Rimes vs. No, No, No - Destiny's Child
Truly Madly Deeply - Savage Garden vs. My Heart Will Go On - Celine Dion
Together Again - Janet vs. How's It Going to Be - Third Eye Blind
You're Still the One - Shania Twain vs. Gettin' Jiggy wit It - Will Smith
All My Life - K-Ci & JoJo vs. I Don't Want to Wait - Paula Cole
The Boy Is Mine - Brandy and Monica vs. You Make Me Wanna... - Usher
antarris: This year was also surprisingly weak. Lots of “this is my third favorite song from this artist.” d8uv: Elton John cheated with a mediocre song that made into two years of this tournament.
1999—Winner: “Livin’ la Vida Loca”
Believe - Cher vs. I'm Your Angel - R. Kelly and Celine Dion
Every Morning - Sugar Ray vs. Nobody's Supposed to Be Here - Deborah Cox
...Baby One More Time - Britney Spears vs. If You Had My Love - Jennifer Lopez
Heartbreak Hotel - Whitney Houston feat. Faith Evans and Kelly Price vs. Slide - Goo Goo Dolls
Kiss Me - Sixpence None the Richer vs. Where My Girls At? - 702
Angel of Mine - Monica vs. Have You Ever? - Brandy
Genie in a Bottle - Christina Aguilera vs. Livin' la Vida Loca - Ricky Martin
No Scrubs - TLC vs. I Want It That Way - Backstreet Boys
d8uv: This had the hardest matchup in the entire tournament. The seeding was unkind, and forced two songs that would have won the year if they didn’t have to clash. “No Scrubs” vs. “Livin’ la Vida Loca”. But, in the end, Ricky Martin just barely beat TLC. I’m still not sure if this was the right choice. antarris: If “No Scrubs” had won, it would have made it just as far as “Livin’ La Vida Loca” did. It’s that good. My mom thinks we made the wrong choice, though.
Breathe - Faith Hill vs. There You Go - Pink
Amazed - Lonestar vs. Bent - Matchbox Twenty
Everything You Want - Vertical Horizon vs. Try Again - Aaliyah
I Wanna Know - Joe vs. Jumpin', Jumpin' - Destiny's Child
Say My Name - Destiny's Child vs. Higher - Creed
Maria Maria - Santana feat. The Product G&B vs. Thong Song - Sisqó
I Knew I Loved You - Savage Garden vs. He Wasn't Man Enough - Toni Braxton
Smooth - Santana feat. Rob Thomas vs. Kryptonite - 3 Doors Down
antarris: I honestly thought d8uv would fight me on this one. I remembered him saying he absolutely hated “Smooth”. d8uv: My dad only listens to Classic Rock. So, when Santana came out with new music, of course he had to Limewire it, and he loved those singles. I heard “Smooth” so many times my teeth fell right out of my head. Turns out, it’s actually a great song. Who knew?
Hanging by a Moment - Lifehouse vs. Where the Party At - Jagged Edge feat. Nelly
Thank You - Dido vs. Again - Lenny Kravitz
I'm Real (Murder Remix) - Jennifer Lopez feat. Ja Rule vs. It Wasn't Me - Shaggy feat. Rikrok
Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me) - Train vs. Stutter - Joe feat. Mystikal
If You're Gone - Matchbox Twenty vs. Hit 'Em Up Style (Oops!) - Blu Cantrell
All for You - Janet Jackson vs. It's Been Awhile - Staind
Let Me Blow Ya Mind - Eve feat. Gwen Stefani vs. Independent Women - Destiny's Child
Fallin' - Alicia Keys vs. U Remind Me - Usher
antarris: A garbage-ass year. I’m pretty sure I rounded third base listening to that Staind song, though. d8uv: I thought Dido would win, since I love that song and still play it. antarris: I think you mean “Stan”.
2002—Winner: “In The End”
How You Remind Me - Nickelback vs. U Don't Have to Call - Usher
What's Luv? - Fat Joe feat. Ashanti vs. U Got It Bad - Usher
Wherever You Will Go - The Calling vs. Always on Time - Ja Rule feat. Ashanti
Dilemma - Nelly feat. Kelly Rowland vs. Ain't It Funny - Jennifer Lopez feat. Ja Rule
A Thousand Miles - Vanessa Carlton vs. Complicated - Avril Lavigne
Hot in Herre - Nelly vs. The Middle - Jimmy Eat World
In the End - Linkin Park vs. Blurry - Puddle of Mudd
Foolish - Ashanti vs. I Need a Girl (Part One) - P. Diddy feat. Usher and Loon
d8uv: Hybrid Theory is the rare album that became better over time. antarris: Seriously. I hated this in 2002. Love it now.
2003—Winner: “Crazy in Love”
In Da Club - 50 Cent vs. Beautiful - Christina Aguilera
Miss You - Aaliyah vs. Picture - Kid Rock feat. Sheryl Crow
When I'm Gone - 3 Doors Down vs. Baby Boy - Beyoncé feat. Sean Paul
Crazy in Love - Beyoncé feat. Jay-Z vs. Shake Ya Tailfeather - Nelly, P. Diddy and Murphy Lee
Unwell - Matchbox Twenty vs. Get Low - Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz feat. Ying Yang Twins
Get Busy - Sean Paul vs. 21 Questions - 50 Cent feat. Nate Dogg
Right Thurr - Chingy vs. Bring Me to Life - Evanescence feat. Paul McCoy
Ignition (Remix) - R. Kelly vs. All I Have - Jennifer Lopez feat. LL Cool J
antarris: I had somehow never even heard “Crazy in Love” before. Wow. d8uv: This did not win because it was novel. Lord knows, these pop charts are filled with random songs that we’ve forgotten. Almost every single one was forgotten for a reason. antarris: To be fair, I think 2001 made me give up on pop music for like a decade.
2004—Winner: “Hey Ya!”
Yeah! - Usher feat. Lil Jon and Ludacris vs. Slow Jamz - Twista feat. Kanye West and Jamie Foxx
Hey Ya! - Outkast vs. Goodies - Ciara feat. Petey Pablo
The Way You Move - Outkast feat. Sleepy Brown vs. Confessions Part II - Usher
This Love - Maroon 5 vs. Slow Motion - Juvenile feat. Soulja Slim
The Reason - Hoobastank vs. Tipsy - J-Kwon
If I Ain't Got You - Alicia Keys vs. Freek-a-Leek - Petey Pablo
I Don't Wanna Know - Mario Winans feat. Enya and P. Diddy vs. Lean Back - Terror Squad
Burn - Usher vs. Here Without You - 3 Doors Down
d8uv: Outkast was as popular as they deserve, for once. antarris: I was promised Enya. I got baby Adam Levine instead. What the actual fuck.
2005—Winner: “Gold Digger”
We Belong Together - Mariah Carey vs. Mr. Brightside - The Killers
Candy Shop - 50 Cent feat. Olivia vs. Don't Cha - The Pussycat Dolls feat. Busta Rhymes
1, 2 Step - Ciara feat. Missy Elliott vs. You and Me - Lifehouse
Since U Been Gone - Kelly Clarkson vs. Don't Phunk with My Heart - The Black Eyed Peas
Gold Digger - Kanye West feat. Jamie Foxx vs. Disco Inferno - 50 Cent
Let Me Love You - Mario vs. Lose Control - Missy Elliott feat. Ciara and Fatman Scoop
Boulevard of Broken Dreams - Green Day vs. Behind These Hazel Eyes - Kelly Clarkson
Hollaback Girl - Gwen Stefani vs. Shake It Off - Mariah Carey
antarris: That’s not even the best song named “Shake It Off.” d8uv: Kanye can be very VERY good when he tries.
Bad Day - Daniel Powter vs. Run It! - Chris Brown feat. Juelz Santana
Ridin' - Chamillionaire feat. Krayzie Bone vs. SexyBack - Justin Timberlake feat. Timbaland
Hips Don't Lie - Shakira feat. Wyclef Jean vs. Grillz - Nelly, Paul Wall and Ali & Gipp
You're Beautiful - James Blunt vs. Over My Head (Cable Car) - The Fray
Unwritten - Natasha Bedingfield vs. Be Without You - Mary J. Blige
Promiscuous - Nelly Furtado feat. Timbaland vs. Me & U - Cassie
Crazy - Gnarls Barkley vs. Check on It - Beyoncé feat. Slim Thug
Temperature - Sean Paul vs. Buttons - Pussycat Dolls feat. Snoop Dogg
antarris: “Crazy” vs. “Ridin’” was hard for me. I’m still not sure if I made the right call. d8uv: Are you sure you weren’t thinking of the Weird Al version? antarris: Yes. Fuck off.
Irreplaceable - Beyoncé vs. This Is Why I'm Hot - Mims
I Wanna Love You - Akon feat. Snoop Dogg vs. Say It Right - Nelly Furtado
Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin') - T-Pain feat. Yung Joc vs. Girlfriend - Avril Lavigne
Big Girls Don't Cry - Fergie vs. Makes Me Wonder - Maroon 5
Before He Cheats - Carrie Underwood vs. Don't Matter - Akon
The Sweet Escape - Gwen Stefani feat. Akon vs. Party Like a Rockstar - Shop Boyz
Hey There Delilah - Plain White T's vs. Glamorous - Fergie feat. Ludacris
Umbrella - Rihanna feat. Jay-Z vs. Smack That - Akon feat. Eminem
d8uv: Here it is, the weakest year of the tournament. There’s like one, maybe two good songs in this list.
90s Grand Tournament—Winner: “Under The Bridge”
d8uv: This was harder than the individual years, because we love every single one of these songs. “Under The Bridge” vs. “Nuthin’ but A ‘G’ Thang” was particularly brutal for me. antarris: We started listening to high-quality versions of the songs here instead of just streaming YouTube. Coolio going over Ace of Base in my bracket surprised me.
00s Grand Tournament—Winner: “In The End”
antarris: “Umbrella” over “Crazy” and “Gold Digger”? Really? It’s like I don’t even know you! d8uv: Should I pack up and leave? Maybe head to the train station? antarris: I picked the song about choo-choo tr--oh, I see what you did there. Not cool. d8uv: This song was always great, it just took a few years for people to forget the stank of nu-metal.
The Grand Final—Winner: “Under The Bridge”
d8uv: They tried so hard, and got so far. But, in the end, it didn’t even matter. antarris: Afterwards, I looked up some of the history on “Under the Bridge”, and this makes sense. A funk-rock band wrote a song based on a poem and had it produced by Rick Rubin. It’s like catnip to both of us for completely different reasons. d8uv: The thing that clinched it for me was the realization that this song builds so beautifully. It’s dynamic in a way most pop songs are, but maintains being interesting even during the subdued opening. antarris: Yeah, I used an orgasm metaphor when I advocated for it. d8uv: Most of the songs on this list were pop songs that became art. This song felt like art that became a pop song. That’s pretentious to say, so just remember—I almost went with “Umbrella”.
I chose these years because I needed to cut 4 years to get 20 years down to 16. Because of this, I excluded the two lowest-revenue (according to the RIAA, adj. for inflation) years from the 90s (1990 and 1991), and the two lowest-revenue years for the 00s (2008 and 2009). It might have been better to include them, but I didn’t want to. Because the Billboard year ends in November, if a song is released during the winter, it’s likely that it won’t show up as a smash hit for one year; instead, it will show up as a mediocre hit across two years. Some songs can pull off charting highly in consecutive years, but that’s really rare. It’s important to remember the wise words of Binary Star: Everything that glitters ain’t gold, and every gold record don’t glitter—that’s for damn sure. The Hot 100 measures popularity, not cultural relevance or quality. A lot of very good, very important songs didn’t make the cut for this tournament, while a lot of long-forgotten dross did. Ultimately, I’m fine with this. Most of the fun of filling out the bracket was running into songs I don’t remember and going “What the fuck are YOU, song?” For singles with an A-side and a B-Side (ex: “Follow You Down / Til I Hear It from You - Gin Blossoms”) I chose the first song. This is a little arbitrary, but a line has to be drawn somewhere. Some additional caveats (because antarris is an academic pedant): this obviously has too small and homogenous a viewing audience to be objective truth. While both of us have pretty broad taste in music, there are some genres—mainstream country and slow R&B in particular—that neither of us is super into. This probably skews our results significantly, especially in the 90s bracket. Also, a better way to determine our sample of songs would be to take a page from Good Mythical Morning’s cereal tournament and set up a poll for each year. However, getting a survey sample that’s representative of the population at large would be extremely challenging with an internet poll and, let’s face it, we’re not getting grant money for this shit.
If you disagree, you should fill out your own bracket:
2019.02.11 00:07 donotholdyourbreathPeople over 40 having kids are just as bad as people under 20
I know there are a lot of celebrities having kids well over 35, like Gwen Stefani, Celine Dion, etc. First off, I love Celine Dion's songs and stuff, but what she did was still rather bad, just like people under 18 having kids. Yeah, life expectancy has increased, but there are still people dying in their 60's. When you hit sixty, and your kid is 20, barely out of highschool, probably in college, it's fucking shitty for them if you drop dead at 60 when they are only 20. People over 40 are just as bad as people under 20 having kids. 20 year olds lack maturity to handle kids, 40 years olds lack the experience. i don't care how much they claim to be 'young' and 'fit', so far, we haven't evolved or have science advance enough to keep 40 years olds to be filled with vitality. If both partners are over 40, don't do it. I'm sort of okay if its like a 25 year old and a 40 year old, but that's still really shitty. Why make your kids cry because you died at 60 or something?
2018.09.11 17:16 Chriscftb97Canadian rapper, Kardinal Offishall reflects on working with Rihanna, Clipse, Dr. Dre, Akon, etc, becoming the first Canadian rapper to hit top 10 on Billboard, and the ten year anniversary of his album "Not 4 Sale"
This past Sunday marked the 10th anniversary of my album, “Not For Sale”. This needs a documentary, more than a post tbh. I was going to war and my integrity, my culture-everything I loved wouldn’t be compromised and was #NOTFORSALE. Some of the highlights of this: partnered with Konvict and Akon helped amplify my global potential, was able to give a platform to Boi-1da and Alex da Kid who went on to become MEGA producers and MEGA stars, (TEMPORARILY) inspired Dr. Dre to come out of retirement (he dropped a verse on “Set It Off” with the Clipse that he rapped over the phone to me at Caribana😳 (that video had a young Melanie Fiona in it), I got to work with Rihanna , Nicole Scherzinger AND Keri Hilson on one song titled “Numba 1” (produced by MEGA producer and close friend Supa dups), (quiet as kept) I had one of my favourite producers of all time (Just Blaze) tell me he was inspired by the beat I produced for “Go Home With You”, I got to work with Jake Uno Tricky Stewart The Dream, Nottz, T-Pain, DJ Kemo, Estelle, Glenn Lewis, J*Davey, Lindo P, No Malice, Pusha T... and my first International hit “Dangerous” sold millions and allowed me to be the first rapper from Canada to penetrate the top 10 of Billboard HOT 100. I cant explain how super blessed I was to even have that opportunity, but I can tell you that that album and that music has enhanced the lives of myself and so many others forever. My body is sore as I type this, because I’m still touring the world and performing some of the songs off that album. One day a movie will be made about everything that happened during the time of this album (me being on Gaga’s first rhythmic hit at radio, YouTube and social media beginning to influence the industry, touring with Akon and Gwen Stefani and recording Dangeorus in the back of Timbaland’s tour bus, being on the road almost 300 days a year and so much more). Big up to every person who supported and copped this album or one of the singles and to every person in front and behind the scenes that contributed to its success. Coming where I came from, it was a success, just being made-chuss me. 🙏🏿🙏🏿🙏 https://www.instagram.com/p/BnlYCEHgINv/?taken-by=kardinalo
2018.03.06 10:55 VulpesOculus33/F/USA-CA Looking for someone to send Lisa Frank stationary to!
And not just Lisa Frank! I have Hello Kitty, some random anime, and some Gwen Stefani Orange County Girl stationary that I can mail out! But that's not all! You'll get pretty words on the stationary written in beautiful gel pens! It's like a 90's girls dream in your mail box! At this point I probably should mention that I'm only looking for snail mail partners. I know, e-mail is fab and all but I'm more likely to respond if I don't have to type it out. Anywho, a little about me: I am a life-long Southern California girl but I'm hoping to move to Japan in the next 5ish years (need to work a little more on learning the language first). I love to travel, dabble a little bit in photography (mostly anime toy photos, ask for more details!) and loveloveLOVE to read!! I will read almost anything put into my hand! At the moment, lying right next to me is "Wicked Gentleman" by Ginn Hale, "Wires and Nerve" by Marissa Meyer, "Showa: A History of Japan 1939-1944" by Shigeru Mizuki, and "Rain in the Doorway" by Thorne Smith, the last of which I'm not so sure I'm down with. I'm going to give it another chapter and see if it sparks my interest. If not, back to the wonderful place known as the Los Angeles Public Library with you! By the way, I love the LAPL! It's not my closest library but I love the architecture and the art installations and will spend hours just wanders around its shelves when I have a chance. Going back to my interests, I love to bake (made some of Katharine Hepburn's brownies last night and they are amazing!) and really cook in general. I don't eat seafood but I'm going to start branching out into that area in hopes to find something I like. I mean, I can't dislike an entire category of food, right? I'm not so big into movies but I do have a few favorites, most of which tend to be animated. I have a love/hate relationship with Disney which is a super long story I won't post here. I am child-free but do have a spoiled cat who I take way too many pictures of. My interests seem to change with the direction of the wind, though. Tonight I've been reading up on hand painted silk and ways to paint watercolor on fabric without having it wash out. Last week I was looking into how to derive opium from poppies (not for use, by the way, but it's interesting nonetheless). I should probably stop or I won't have anything to write to anyone about. If any of this strikes your fancy, feel free to hit me up! If we click we'll exchange addresses and move on from that point! :-) EDIT: Oh my goodness, so many people! I did not expect to get so many PMs with this post! Everyone who's already responded, thank you! I'll be getting back in touch with you today after work! Everyone else, I'm sorry but I'll have to stop accepting offers for now. Thanks for your consideration, though!
2017.11.15 13:09 moresourdoughThe resurrection of the West
I am a socialist and have been a socialist for years, but this is something not a lot of people comprehend or would expect. The problem with the word socialism is that it is a catch-all phrase for a lot of different intellectual tendencies that have diverged so far over the centuries that they end up having relatively little in common with one another. Hitler and Bernie Sanders are both socialists, but I don't feel a lot of sympathy for either of them. What makes me a socialist is that I believe that humans are free to form whatever kind of society we wish to form, for the betterment of our own lives. We're not genuinely subordinated by deities, by powerful people, or even by human nature. If we want to make a better world for ourselves, we're capable of doing so. In fact, the past 200 years show that we have been capable of accomplishing such a thing. Our lives are better today than they used to be, due to social progress. We live longer and healthier lives, that can be devoted to more interesting objectives. Of course there are different forms of social progress, some of which are still taboo. Consider for example, eugenics. Margaret Sanger and most other early socialists considered it more than obvious that there are wide segments of human society that carry hereditary burdens and should be discouraged from bringing more misery into the world. The early 20th century socialists recognized a simple principle that is as taboo for Bernie Sanders as it is for Donald Trump. Consider the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas, where the son of a bank robber committed a massacre against innocent people. It's quite self-evident that this family carries a hereditary burden that should not be perpetuated. Similarly, consider the many cases where three of more generations in one family depend on disability payments to survive. If we want to maintain a social safety net, the government has a responsibility to ensure that there is no unsustainable growth in the demographic categories that depend upon the safety net. Extrapolate this to a wider sense as we look at the society we live in. I am aware of families where children are sexually abused by step-fathers and the mothers choose to side with the abusers, thus forcing the government to take away the children and have them raised by foster-parents. Similarly, we know that there are families where parents mutilate their children's genitals, where four women are married to one man, or where girls are driven towards suicide by the expectation that they should marry adult men. I want to minimize the number of births of children under conditions that are not conducive to a happy meaningful life. When I look at societies like Africa, the Middle East and religious fundamentalist communities in the United States, I see societies where the number of births should be minimized. On the other hand, when I look at societies like Scandinavia, I see societies where the number of births should be maximized. This is self-evident to me. Parents who read their children bed-time stories and go out to feed crumbs of bread to the ducks with them are parents who should have more children, if need be through IVF when their natural fertility begins to decline. Parents who treat their children as cheap labor or sexy meat for the local village elder are parents whose fertility should be kept to an absolute minimum. If I heard tomorrow that there were no children born in Somalia or Yemen that day, I would propose a toast to that. Something every theodicy struggles to deal with is the observation that our world seems to have an abundance of cruel and pointless suffering. I regularly encounter suffering in my environment that seems to serve a purpose, in the sense that it is an outgrowth of an accumulation of wrong decisions in life, a form of suffering that people can learn and grow from. On the other hand when we step outside of our Western bubble, we encounter suffering that seemingly serves no purpose. Consider children, who beg on the streets of Bangladesh, their limbs amputated by gangs that understand mutilated children earn them more money. In Africa we find children who are so deprived of nutrition that their faces begin to rot and their jawbones start to peek through their cheeks. In Somalia, children who are raped end up suffering the penalty of being stoned to death. I am fundamentally of the opinion that what we know as the third world should not exist, in an ontological sense of the word. It is a cosmological error. Meaning isn't intrinsic to existence. To have a meaningful life is not a self-evident fact, there are many lives that can only be understood as meaningless. I am not of the opinion that suffering is inherently virtuous, that we should tolerate its presence, that we should come up with rationalizations for it. A deformed child born without legs is not brave or inspirational, but a child whose potential was stunted before birth. For every HIV positive child who can be dragged up on stage to tell inspirational TED talks to middle-class white people suffering existential ennui, a thousand die in shanty towns, their names lost to history. There is one good thing that came forth out of the Holocaust: The idea that we should not make peace with God, that there can be no justifiable explanation for the suffering we witness and that we should live in a state of perpetual protest against the fundamental nature of reality. It is proposed that we exist in something far more complex than a universe of dead matter that came into existence by coincidence. We live within a fundamental paradox: Born into a congenital state of subservience to a God who can not be forgiven. I do not dare to go this far, as this leads in practice to suicidal nihilism. Rather, I believe in the Irenaean theodicy, that evil and suffering exist because it is necessary for us to fully develop into the beings we have the potential to be. We want our children to be free and to grow up as mature responsible adults, even if they end up making mistakes along the way. Similarly, humanity as a whole goes through a process of philosophical maturation. The idea of progress takes on theological forms, because it is a secularized theodicy. What Marquis the Condorcet effectively proposed was that evil exists as a transitory state for us to eradicate, he just did so in strictly secular terms. So, when we see suffering that seems pointless, or acts of cruelty that boggle the mind, we have to remember that it exists primarily because in its absence, we would not have the ability to become mature at a collective level. Western civilization exists in an immature stage, until it has the self-confidence to assertively export its accomplishments to the non-Western world. What do I mean with this? Effectively, I am referring here to the traditional neoconservative position, that is deeply unpopular because it has been corrupted by corporate greed and incompetently executed. Consider this. I am born into a society where I have a chance to accomplish whatever my innate potential allows me to. I'm not genuinely handicapped by having poor parents, if I'm sick or hungry I'm guaranteed not to live the rest of my life stunted as a consequence. I'm treated with basic dignity, not born into a hereditary caste that is publicly humiliated, not forced into an arranged marriage, not punished for being raped, free to publicly voice my opinion and to challenge and reject the theological foundations on which Western civilization has functioned for the past two millennia. I want these Western accomplishments to be imposed upon the rest of the world, whether this is popular or not. If we don't aggressively impose our success on the rest of the world, the rest of the world will aggressively impose its failure upon us. Where I disagree with the Neoconservatives is in the manner in which we should export Western civilization. Rather than killing Gadaffi or invading Iraq, I would like to see millions of Western youth migrate to Africa and the Middle East and bring their culture with them. I think Islamic fundamentalism is more effectively dismantled by sending Lady Gaga to Jakarta than by sending unmanned drones to rural Syria. I think packages of psychedelics and abortion pills sent anonymously through mail are cheaper and more effective at accomplishing our pursued objectives than bullets are. I don't simply base these beliefs of mine on my own unfounded speculation. I have scientific evidence readily available to me to back up my assertions. People who have gone through the process of ego death under the influence of large amounts of psychedelics have their political perspective changed and become less authoritarian as a consequence. What we have before us, are the means through which we are able to completely transform non-Western cultures. We do not have to live in the manner in which we have lived for thousands of years, because we now have the autonomy to transform our own state of mind. This belief of mine ties into an underlying notion I endorse, that what we refer to as Western civilization is an inherently superior way of life and thus inevitably desirable to the entire world. The reason we have succeeded at assimilating almost everything is because what we have to offer is simply better for the vast majority of non-Western populations. The oil sheikhs benefit from the Bedouin Arab culture they were born into. Arab women and non-wealthy Arab men don't benefit from the culture they were born into. It's fundamentally a happier and more meaningful existence, to live like us. Life is enriched when you are able to play sports, to drink alcohol, to own pets, to choose your own partner, to dance and sing and create art. As a result, the culture of the Arab peninsula ultimately can't survive contact with Western culture: Our way of life is too desirable. Those who see their established thought system die tend to lash out in anger. So, when we have established that we have a way of life that is superior and deserves to be exported to others, we are required to ask ourselves on what basis it came into existence. This is a question that has been asked a thousand times over, with a thousand different theories proposed. Fundamentally, it seems to me that what we do right is that we create an environment that allows innovative and creative people to reach their full potential. Critics are not thrown in jail, eccentrics are celebrated and we encourage people to pursue their ideas and creative visions to their natural extent. We don't do this as much as we could do it, so we are not as succesful as we have the potential to be, but we do this better than any other culture on Earth. The Chinese have a standard of living similar to ours now, but have failed to produce a cultural climate conducive to genuine creativity. As a result, they will not lead the world, at least not for the forseeable future. This issue ties into another question we're forced to ponder, which is whether we are innately different from non-Western people. It seems to me that to some degree, we are of course innately different, but the question we're skipping over is how we wish to define innate traits. The Jews were transformed into a race of intellectuals over a couple of centuries. In a similar manner, psychological trauma can be inherited from one generation to another. Finally, there are a variety of ways in which Western people are different from non-Western people that we generally fail to take into consideration. Consider the fact that we have children at a much later age than non-Western people generally do. After a father's age of 45, the risk of bipolar disorder increases dramatically, as do the risk of autism, ADHD and other ailments. A man's mutations in his sperm are non-random: Selfish spermatogenia mutations lead those cells to thrive at the cost of non-selfish spermatogenia. As a result, a man with a 45 year old father differs in predictable ways from a man with a 25 year old father. He is more likely to be mentally ill, but mental illness is a problem that tends to underly the creative outbursts we witness within Western civilization. Consider the large number of suicides we witness among our favourite painters, musicians and poets, like Sylvia Plath, whose father was 47 when she was born. We live in the kind of society where people's lives can be preserved and produce cognitive states that would have been impossible for us in preceding eras. What we have to understand is that we are a product of multiple factors, most of which we can export to non-Western cultures. We grow up with healthy diets, we do not suffer parasite infections, we are born to older parents, we are free to consume alcohol and caffeinated beverages to elevate our mood and grow up as children with pets who lead us to develop increased empathy. We are genetically different from non-Western people, the evidence overwhelmingly backs up this assertion, but those genetic differences are not all-decisive. In fact, by exporting our Western culture, we will create the kind of conditions under which people similar to us will thrive. We are the love-children of muses, rather than the sire of patriarchs. By exporting Western culture to the Middle East and dismantling the polygamous societal structure in which poor men are brainwashed by aristocracies to fight wars to seize Yazidi girls and eradicate competing tribes, we encourage Middle Eastern men who are similar to us to pass on their genes, at the cost of Middle Eastern men whose influence on society is fundamentally toxic. So, to conclude this statement, we have to understand what we are and have the confidence and arrogance needed to exported the niche that could lead us to come into existence in the first place. Just as trees create soil so that more trees can grow, we should create more of the soil that allowed us to come into existence in the first place. I feel no affinity to protestant fundamentalists who lived a few centuries ago, just because I might be descended from them. To me Mormon fundamentalists in New Mexico who practice polygamy have more in common with tribes in the Arab peninsula, than with me. Rather, I feel affinity to people who fundamentally think and feel in a similar manner to me. Finally, we have to understand what's causing us to die out. It's important to avoid cynicism in this. What prohibits the Western man from having children is ultimately the fact that we are free to pursue interests in life that are more appealing to us and want to raise our children under conditions conducive to their long-term wellbeing. Most people do want children, but fail to have them as a consequence of these issues. There are a number of different solutions to this that will need to be implemented. To start with, our society needs to pursue wealth distribution, from those unable or unwilling to reproduce, towards those willing and able to. The babyboomer generation spends wealth on bed and breakfast hotels, vacation homes in the mediterranean, yachts, cruise vacations and assorted nonsense, that could have been used to allow the younger generations a chance to start a family. Our society needs a universal basic income. Rather than being awarded on an annual basis, the money needs to be saved until a person reaches adulthood, at which point the money from the eighteen preceeding years is handed to them as a lump sum. This would be sufficient to allow most of them to start a family at a younger age. Finally, we need ambitious programs to expand the feminine period of fertility. The period of fertility is about thirty years long, but due to legal and cultural factors, a third of this fertility window goes effectively unused, thus leaving us with a period ranging from around 23 to around 43. We manage to expand the period for a few years through IVF, but this comes with great costs, labor and negative health effects for mother and child. If Western women remained fertile for another ten years, birth rates would rise dramatically, while quality of life would increase for everyone. Consider Gwen Stefani, who became pregnant at 47 through IVF. This is the new cultural model. Western women wait long, but waiting is better than abstaining. What if youth could be extended, at the cost of old age? The consequences would be fantastic for everyone involved. If a fifty year old woman could have the body of a forty year old woman, while a forty year old woman has the body of a thirty year old woman, fertility rates would rise, relationship stability would increase, happiness would increase and intelligent people would increase their fertility more than less intelligent people would. We make peace with old age, only because we can not stop it. Our psychological immune system allows us to make peace with aging in the same manner as it allows us to go on living when we lose limbs or become paralyzed from the waist down. I have no intention to accept that what I can do with my mind and my body will gradually decline until I end up spending the last years of my life as a burden on society. To me it is apparent that we are capable of addressing this problem. Just as we would have considered it unimaginable a century ago that a fifty year old woman could give birth, today we have the technology to enable such a thing. Similarly, we have the technology available to us to keep women fertile for a longer period of time. We can inject stem cells into the hypothalamus, treat women with platalet-rich plasma, administer DHEA, selectively kill the senescent cells that cause us to age or administer chemotherapy drugs that increase a woman's egg count. The simple fact of the matter remains that this research is still in its infancy, as this was simply never a major human priority. In the coming years however, you will come to recognize that the fertile period can be naturally extended for many years. Births rates will increase again as a consequence, while the Western demographic winter will come to an end. The resurrection of the West is now upon us.
First of all, sorry for the HUGE delay! I’ve had a lack of creative juices the last few days but I’m so getting back to this now…. ENERGY! Last Time… After the Time Travelling Queens acting challenge, Latrice was the third queen to sashay away from the RuDemption Zone. We left the queens as Sharon and Tatianna, as the winners of the challenge, began their lip sync to “One Last Time” by Ariana Grande. . . . The lip sync was very sensual from Tatianna. She hit all the right notes and embodied Ariana’s vocals as if they were her own. Sharon managed to keep some pace but did not have the right sexuality about the song and failed to match Tati’s rhythm. “Ladies,” Ru bellowed as the song faded out and Ongina and Jujubee applauded from the back of the stage, “I have made my decision.” Looking between the two queens, Ru knew the decision was an easy one. “Tatianna, you’re a winner baby. Condragulations, you may return to the main competition.” Tati bowed, and gave Sharon a hug. “Thank yew!” Tati shouted as she left the stage to prepare for the next main challenge. THE NEXT MORNING: IN THE WERKROOM The seven queens – Alyssa, Bianca, Bob, DeLa, Katya, Manila and Shea – bundled into the workroom in an explosion of spins and high kicks. “I’m not doing that shit I’ll break a hip,” moaned Bianca as the other queens laughed. “I’m just concerned that we were told to do stretching exercises this morning,” Manila added, “If they flip out another cheerleading challenge that’ll be Bianca out cos of her wooden leg.” The queens laughed as with a “HELLO, HELLO, HELLO”, Ru entered the workroom stairs. “Now ladies,” he began, in a dashing turquoise suit, “This week you’ll be channelling your inner STAR! In the spirit of Dancing with the Stars, we present to you… Dancing with the Queens!” The girls screamed with joy, broadly speaking. Bianca and Manila looked somewhat less than pleased, while Alyssa and Shea looked fit to burst. “Dancing is what I do,” Alyssa said in her confessional, “Dancing is what I know I can do. And that means I should be safe from the bottom this week. For a change.” “Katya once said, I’m not a dancer, but I’m not, not a dancer,” Bianca added in her own confessional, “But in all honesty I’m just not a dancer. This is gonna be rough. We’ve all seen the Sissy That Walk video, and it ain’t that pretty.” “Now you’ll be working in pairs,” Ru continued as the queens quietened down, “But you’ll need your eighth queen for that…please welcome back to the race…Tatianna!” The workroom doors open and Tati floated into the workroom, met by cheers. “Now, I’ll be pairing you up based on your performance so far in the competition. So… “Bianca Del Rio and Shea Couleé… “Bob the Drag Queen and Tatianna… “BenDeLaCreme and Katya… “and Alyssa Edwards and Manila Luzon!” The queens all grabbed their new partners by the hand. Bob, Tatianna, DeLa and Katya seemed pleased with their pairings. Shea tried not to make it seem as if she was disappointed to have been paired with Bianca, but was afraid she would be a hindrance during the challenge. Alyssa was determined to make Manila work hard and achieve the win she so desired. “Now, I have four difference dance styles which you will have to pick between and choreograph a routine to, which have been randomly selected for each team.” Ru handed out four envelopes to the pairs of queens and left them to it with a “may the best woman win”. The girls split off and opened their envelopes. Bianca and Shea got Tap dance to “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” by Bette Midler, much to Shea’s dismay. Despite being a successful dancer, Tap wasn’t her strong suit. Bob and Tatianna got Latin to “Kiss Kiss” by Holly Valance. They managed to find matching Mexican-style outfits and began their choreography with glee. DeLa and Katya got Contemporary to “Natural Woman” by Aretha Franklin. They donned simple black leotards and began to choreograph a sultry number with some undertones of camp. Alyssa and Manila got Hip-hop to “Hollaback Girl” by Gwen Stefani. Alyssa was pleased with the selection and began to whip Manila into shape for a funky hip-hop number. Later that day, the queens left pair by pair to work on refining their choreography with Todrick Hall. How will the queens perform in the challenge? You decide here The spreadsheet of the season can be found here
2017.06.19 21:08 feedredditCrazy in Love: A Comprehensive Timeline of Jay Z and Beyoncé’s Relationship
Crazy in Love: A Comprehensive Timeline of Jay Z and Beyoncé’s Relationship by Cady Lang via TIME URL: http://ift.tt/2rJrj8I Beyoncé and Jay Z’s relationship is the stuff of pop culture legend. Over the course of almost two decades, the ultimate power couple has done everything from collaborate on music to tour together. And while their relationship hasn’t always been drama-free, there’s no doubt that Jay and Bey are committed. In honor of the birth of their twins, here’s a comprehensive primer on Beyoncé and Jay Z’s relationship. 1997 – 2000: Sometime during this three-year period, Jay Z and Beyoncé meet for the first time. Exactly when depends on the interview. In a 2007 interview with Charlie Rose, Jay Z said he met Beyoncé “10 years ago,” which would place their first meeting around 1997. However, in a 2008 interview with Seventeen, Beyoncé says that she first met the rap mogul when she was 18 (around 1999 or 2000) and that they began dating when she was 19. November 2001: The pair appear on the cover of _Vanity Fair_‘s music issue alongside David Bowie, Gwen Stefani and others. According to an interview with _Vanity Fair_in 2013, Jay Z says that during this shoot, they were “just beginning to try to date each other,” and that at the time, he was still trying to “wine and dine” her. October 2002: In her first post-Destiny’s Child work, Beyoncé is featured on Jay Z’s 2002 track “’03 Bonnie & Clyde;” she also appears as the ride-or-die Bonnie to Jay Z’s Clyde in the accompanying video. Jay Z’s use of the term “girlfriend” only heightened the romantic narrative of the song, sending tongues wagging about a potential romance between Beyoncé and Jay Z. In a 2016 interview with BET, Roc-A-Fella founder Kareem “Biggs” Burke said that this song signaled to him and Damon Dash that Jay Z was really in love with Beyoncé. “There was a time in Paris when they sent us ‘Bonnie & Clyde,’” he said. “When we heard that song, Dame looked at me and said ‘Yo, he’s in love.’ So if y’all know Jay, a lot of times everything comes out in music. When he does interviews he’s a little more reluctant to speak about certain things. But it always comes out in his albums; so at that time when ‘Bonnie & Clyde’ came out we knew he was in love with Beyoncé.” November 2002: Although Bey and Jay are keeping mum about a relationship, they show up in matching denim ensembles (and Bey rocks Jay’s signature Yankees cap, natch) to promote “’03 Bonnie & Clyde” on MTV’s _Total Request Live._During this appearance, Beyoncé also says that they “met a long time ago.” February 2003: Jay Z and Beyoncé are photographed together at the NBA All-Star Game Weekend, one of a number of outings that year. April 2003: Lest anyone get the wrong idea about their chummy relationship, however, Jay Z sets the record straight in an interview with Playboy: “We’re just cool. We’re just friends.” May 2003: Beyoncé releases “Crazy in Love,” as the lead single off her first solo album, _Dangerously in Love._Jay Z contributes a rap verse and features prominently as her love interest in the accompanying music video. Needless to say, their respective fans and most of the world assume that the two are more than just friends. June 2003: _Dangerously in Love_officially drops. The album features another duet with Jay Z, “That’s How You Like It,” and perhaps more interesting, a reference to her love for a Sagittarius on the song “Signs” with Missy Elliott; Jay Z, born on Dec. 4, is a Sagittarius. August 2003: The dynamic duo perform “Crazy in Love” at the MTV Video Music Awards. November 2003: Jay Z releases The Black Album; on his song “Public Service Announcement,” he makes the declaration that he’s got the “hottest chick in the game wearing my chain,” which is widely believed to be about Beyoncé. Later that month, Jay holds a “retirement” concert at Madison Square Garden where he and Beyoncé perform “Crazy in Love” together. December 2003: In an interview with The Guardian, Jay Z is referred to as Beyoncé’s boyfriend. August 2004: Bey and Jay make their first red carpet appearance at the 2004 MTV Video Music Awards together in some very memorable matching ensembles. Frank Micelotta—Getty Images2005: Rumors that Jay Z is having a relationship with then up-and-coming singer Rihanna surface. The author of an unauthorized Beyoncé biography, J. Randy Taraborrelli, told _Entertainment Tonight_in a 2015 interview that the unsubstantiated affair was fabricated for the tabloids to “boost Rihanna’s career.” Bey’s father and manager Matthew Knowles does not address the rumors until the following year in a lengthy press release that it’s a “consistent plan by some to create chaos around Beyoncé’s _B’Day_release.” January 2006: Trouble rumors swap out for rumors of wedding bells after an interview with Cosmopolitan when Beyoncé hints at a possible wedding. “Right now, the tabloids are saying I’m pregnant, and they’re naming the baby,” she said. “It’s hilarious. I don’t know when I’ll want to get married. I never pictured myself as a bride, but after my sister’s wedding, I did start thinking about what kind of wedding I’d want. I don’t think I want a big one.” September 2006: Beyoncé releases her second album _B’Day,_which includes two duet tracks with Jay Z: “Dèjá Vu” and “Upgrade U.” In the “Upgrade U” video, Beyoncé dresses up like Jay Z and lip syncs some of his rap verse. Matthew Knowles releases a statement denying several rumors including the ones about Rihanna, suggesting they are an attempt to sabotage the album’s success following the release of B’Day. The album prominently featured a number of joyful love songs, but “Ring the Alarm” and “Resentment” get the rumor mill going as some fans speculated the lyrics to “Resentment” in particular could have been inspired by an affair. November 2006: Jay Z releases the album Kingdom Come, which includes the song “Lost One.” The song’s introspective lyrics read “I don’t think it’s meant to be, B/But she loves her work more than she does me/And honestly, at 23/I would probably love my work more than I did she.” Later, in 2010, Jay Z addresses the lyrics in his book, _Decoded:_“These lines are about trying to have a real, serious relationship with another ambitious professional. In a lot of ways, this is the flip side of the songs in my catalog like ‘Big Pimpin’, where women exist almost completely as predators or objects. This is about how difficult it is to respect a lover as an autonomous human being, with separate needs and goals and timelines than yours. It’s one of the hardest things about a real relationship of equals. But it’s worth it.” The album also features “Hollywood,” a collaboration with Beyoncé. April 2008: Beyoncé and Jay Z tie the knot in a top-secret ceremony at Jay Z’s penthouse apartment in NYC on April 4, 2008. The date is an homage to the significance of the number 4 in the couple’s life; both Bey and Jay are born on the 4th (Beyoncé’s birthday is Sept. 4 while Jay’s is Dec. 4.) In lieu of wedding rings, Jay and Bey get the Roman numeral “IV” tattooed on their fourth/ring fingers. While the couple kept the wedding under wraps, without releasing photos or video, wedding footage makes its way into the “On the Run” tour visuals and on Beyoncé’s 2016 visual album Lemonade. It’s an uber-private ceremony — in a 2009 interview with Oprah, Jay Z says it was a small affair. 9 years already??? Congratulations to the Carters❤❤on their Anniversary 💐 ( thats my arm fixing the dress lol) Thats my minister Rudy Rasmus who married Solange, Beyonce and me❤ A post shared by Tina Knowles (@mstinalawson) on Apr 4, 2017 at 7:11am PDT October 2008: Beyoncé offers a rare glimpse of what her relationship with Jay Z is really like during an interview with _Essence:_“We decide everything. My word is my word. What Jay and I have is real. It’s not about interviews or getting the right photo op. It’s real.” She also shares that she didn’t want an engagement ring because “people put too much emphasis on that. It’s just material and it’s just silly to me.” During this month, Beyoncé also released “Single Ladies” and “If I Were a Boy” as the first singles off her third studio album I Am…Sasha Fierce. Producer Christopher “Tricky” Stewart commented in a 2014 interview with _Texas Music Magazine_that at the time, the song was “the only public statement [Beyoncé and Jay-Z] ever made about marriage.” January 2009: Jay Z and Beyoncé solidify their status as a power couple by joining forces with President Barack and First Lady Michelle Obama. The Carter-Knowles were vocal supporters of Obama during the 2008 presidential election and made high-profile appearances at both the Inauguration and an inaugural ball. Beyoncé performed “America the Beautiful” at the Obama Inaugural Concert and “At Last” for the first dance at the Neighborhood Ball. April 2010: While Beyoncé is taking a break from her music that many believe is due to pregnancy, she makes a surprise appearance at Jay Z’s Coachella set that year to help him sing “Forever Young.” October 2010: Beyoncé’s mother, Tina Knowles, tells _Access Hollywood_that there’s no truth to the talk of pregnancy. “No, it’s not true right now,” she said. “It’s gonna happen when it’s time, but not right now.” May 2011: In a blog post on his website Life + Times, Jay Z posts a video that he took of Beyoncé rehearsing for an American Idol_performance, captioning it “Sometimes you need perspective. You’ve been right in front of greatness so often that you need to step back and see it again for the first time. This is the dressing room rehearsal for _American Idol. NO MICROPHONE. No effects.” June 2011: Beyoncé releases her fourth studio album, appropriately titled 4, after the couple’s favorite number. This is her first studio album that doesn’t feature Jay Z on any of the songs. Of the many love songs on the album, “Countdown” leads fans to theorize about a future pregnancy. August 2011: Jay Z and Kanye West release joint album Watch the Throne; Beyoncé appears on the track “Lift Off.” Later that month before performing at the MTV Video Music Awards, Beyoncé announces her pregnancy by asking the audience to “feel the love that’s growing inside of me.” At the end of her performance, she unbuttons her sequined tuxedo jacket to reveal her growing baby bump — much to the unbridled delight of the audience, Kanye West and pretty much the entire world. The announcement even sets a Guinness World Record for the most tweets per second recorded for a single event at the overwhelming rate of 8,868 tweets per second. January 2012: Beyoncé gives birth to Blue Ivy Carter on Jan. 7, 2012 in New York City. The couple releases an official joint statement about the heir to the Knowles-Carter legacy: “Her birth was emotional and extremely peaceful – we are in heaven. She was delivered naturally at a healthy 7 lbs. It was the best experience of both of our lives. We are thankful to everyone for all your prayers, well wishes, love and support.” Many see Blue’s middle name Ivy as a homonym for the Roman numeral IV, pointing to the Knowles-Carters’ affinity for the number. About a week later, Jay Z posts the Neptunes-produced song “Glory” on his website, which commemorates the birth of Blue Ivy, most notably by including a clip of her cries at the conclusion of the song and giving her a credit on the song as B.I.C. (Blue Ivy is the youngest person to ever appear on a Billboard chart.) The song is uncharacteristically revealing about the long-awaited joy Blue Ivy has brought them with lyrics like “False alarms and false starts/All made better by the sound of your heart/All the pain of the last time” and “My most greatest creation was you.” Jay also has some touching homages to Bey in the song, including a reference to her past life as a member of Destiny’s Child: “You’re a child of destiny/You’re a child of my destiny/You’re my child with the child from Destiny’s Child/That’s a hell of a recipe.” February 2012: The Knowles-Carters post the first pictures of Blue Ivy on her own, now-defunct Tumblr. The Internet, predictably, loses it. May 2012: Jay Z makes a rare display of public affection on Twitter about his wife. "I'm gonna say this and then I'm gonna end mine." BEYONCE is the best performer in the world. Period. — Mr. Carter (@S_C_) May 26, 2012 August 2012: The Carter-Knowles surpass Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen as _Forbes’_highest-paid celebrity couple at an estimated combined $78 million. January 2013: Beyoncé sings the national anthem at Obama’s second inauguration. That same month, Ora takes to Twitter to vehemently deny the rumor she’s having an affair with her then-Roc Nation mentor Jay Z. February 2013: Beyoncé releases her HBO documentary Life Is But a Dream, which features footage of intimate and romantic moments. Beyoncé also denies rumors that she wasn’t actually pregnant with Blue Ivy. An especially poignant part of the film shows the pair singing Coldplay’s “Yellow” together. Later in 2015, Jay Z will select this song as his pick for her birthday playlist, citing that “This song reminds me of you and I on vacation. ‘Look at the stars, look how they shine for you.’ So many legendary nights. It represents vulnerability; it’s us in our own world, away from work and totally lost in love. ‘For you, I’ll bleed myself dry.'” This month, Beyoncé also reveals to Oprah that she suffered a miscarriage before Blue Ivy; she also sheds light on how her marriage helped shape her self-concept. “I would not be the woman I am if I did not go home to that man,” Beyoncé said. “It gives me such a foundation.” April 2013: The couple celebrate their 5th wedding anniversary in Cuba with their respective mothers. While the trip was drew criticism for possibly violating U.S. sanction laws, it was later officially cleared by the Department of the Treasury. Beyoncé embarks on her Mrs. Carter World Tour; while on tour, Jay Z makes romantic surprise appearances like this one. July 2013: Jay Z releases his album Magna Carta Holy Grail; Beyoncé appears on the track “Part II (On the Run),” a sequel of sorts to “’03 Bonnie & Clyde.” Out of countless lyrics about matters of the heart, “Holy Grail” has a verse that references infidelity, which leads some listeners to jump to conclusions: “Keep cheating on me /What I do / I took her back / Fool me twice / That’s my bad / I can’t even blame her for that.” December 2013: Beyoncé drops her surprise self-titled visual album, _Beyoncé._The album features Jay Z on the sexy track “Drunk in Love,” which introduces the word “surfbort” into the pop culture canon. Jay Z — or representations of him — appears multiple times in the visual components, including Jay watching Beyoncé perform at the Crazy Horse in Paris in “Partition” and dancing with her on the beach for “Drunk in Love.” The album is lauded for Beyoncé’s strong embrace of being an empowered woman, from “Blow” to “***Flawless,” which sampled Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. The theme of betrayal that Bey’s addressed in the past pops up again, especially on the tracks “Mine” and “Jealous.” On “Mine,” lyrics talk about “having conversations about breakups and separations/I’m not feeling like myself since the baby/Are we gonna even make it? Oooh/’Cause if we are, we’re taking this a little too far” while on “Jealous,” she notes “I never broke one promise, and I know when you’re not honest.” January 2014: Beyoncé and Jay Z give a much-praised performance of “Drunk in Love” at the Grammys; while Jay Z was criticized for his references to Ike and Tina Turner in his verse on the song, Beyoncé co-signs the lyric by singing the line with him during the live performance, a move that some pointed to as Bey standing by her man. Later that night, when Jay Z wins a Grammy for _Magna Carta Holy Grail,_Hov pays homage to Queen Bey in his acceptance speech. “I want to thank God, I mean, a little for this award, but mostly for that and all the universes for conspiring and putting that beautiful light of a young woman in my life.” He also calls his Grammy a “sippy cup” for Blue Ivy. April 2014: Jay and Bey announce their first ever joint tour called the “On the Run” tour, which includes a very excellent short film of a trailer. Ora again dispels rumors that she and Jay Z are involved in anything besides a working relationship during an interview on Power 105.1, telling the interviewer, “Don’t you dare disrespect Beyoncé like that ever again in your entire life,” she said. “You should know better than that. That’s just straight-up disrespect.” May 2014: The news of the tour is soon overshadowed after video footage is leaked of Beyoncé’s sister Solange physically attacking her brother-in-law in an elevator at the Standard Hotel in New York City, following a Met Gala after party. Beyoncé stood by without interfering during the incident. The buzz about the footage was enough to prompt the family to make a statement to AP, saying that while there has been “a great deal of speculation about what triggered the unfortunate incident…the most important thing is that our family has worked through it. Jay and Solange each assume their share of responsibility for what has occurred.” The statement stated that Jay and Solange also apologized to each other and that “we have moved forward as a united family.” Some speculated that the elevator episode was prompted by an interaction with Rachel Roy at the after-party. The fashion designer is the ex-wife of Jay’s ex-business partner Damon Dash. A former intern at Jay and Dash’s fashion label Rocawear, she eventually rose in the ranks until she was named the creative director of womenswear at the label. The day after the elevator incident, Beyoncé posts a photo of herself on Instagram wearing a shirt with Aaliyah’s face on it. Some see this action as a slight toward Roy, since Dash had dated the late singer until her untimely death; When Solange appears to delete most of the photos of her sister on her Instagram account, it makes headlines. Meanwhile, Beyoncé posts a prayer and photos of her and her sister together on her own Instagram. 🐝 A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on May 7, 2014 at 12:28pm PDT A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on May 14, 2014 at 3:34am PDT A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on May 6, 2014 at 6:43pm PDT Toward the end of the month, Beyoncé posts a photo of herself to Instagram that shows that she’s not at Kim Kardashian West’s wedding to Kanye West, an interesting development especially given Jay Z’s close collaboration with West. Some on the Internet point to Roy’s close friendship with Kardashian West as to why Bey and Jay skip the wedding. A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on May 24, 2014 at 9:46am PDT June 2014: The On the Run tour starts, with music’s ultimate power couple showing off tons of PDA onstage. During the Cincinnati stop of the On the Run tour, Beyoncé changes the lyrics of “Resentment” from “been ridin’ with you for six years” to “been ridin’ with you for 12 years,” which corresponds to their relationship timeline at that point. She also changes the lyrics to another line from “I’ll always remember feeling like I was no good/Like I couldn’t do it for you like your mistress could” to “I’ll always remember feeling like I was no good/Like I couldn’t do it for you like that wack b—-ch could.” The kicker of lyric changes, however, comes from the line “been ridin’ with you for six years/I gotta look at her in her eyes and see she’s had half of me” becoming “been ridin’ with you for 12 years/I gotta look at her in her eyes and see she’s had half of me. She ain’t even half of me. That b–ch will never be.” Over on Beyoncé’s Instagram, all appears well with the Knowles-Carters. A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on Jul 21, 2014 at 7:57pm PDT August 2014: Beyoncé releases a remix of”Flawless” featuring Nicki Minaj, adding the instantly iconic, self-referential line, “Of course sometimes sh-t go down when it’s a billion dollars on an elevator.” Later that month, Tina Knowles tells a TMZ_reporter that “everything’s perfect.” Matthew Knowles, no longer Beyoncé’s manager, suggests that breakup rumors are a “Jedi mind trick” to ignite ticket sales for the tour in an interview on the _The Roula & Ryan Show. However, at the end of the month, Beyoncé appears and performs a medley of her greatest hits at the MTV Video Music Awards, where Jay Z and Blue Ivy present her with the Video Vanguard Award. In her acceptance speech, Beyoncé tells Jay Z, “My beloved, I love you.” After the VMAs, the pair are spotted being affectionate at Jay’s Made in America festival. September 2014: Jay releases a tribute video to Bey in honor of her birthday. Later that month, HBO releases an “On the Run” concert special. October 2014: Bey and Jay take a trip to Paris. Quelle romantique! A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on Oct 17, 2014 at 6:31am PDT November 2014: Beyoncé releases the track “Ring Off,” which includes a story about turmoil that her mother Tina experienced; she ultimately divorced from Matthew Knowles. Some view this ode as a cautionary tale for Jay Z. February 2015: The pair appear at the Grammys that month. A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on Feb 9, 2015 at 10:57am PST May 2015: One year after the elevator incident, Jay Z and Beyoncé attend the Met Gala together. A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on May 4, 2015 at 8:15pm PDT September 2015: During a trip to Italy, Beyoncé posts a picture of herself on Instagram with a lemon, a photo that will be heavily analyzed after she releases her next album. A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on Sep 20, 2015 at 8:17am PDT April 2016: Beyoncé releases her widely celebrated sixth studio album (and second visual album,) _Lemonade._An overarching theme of the album is infidelity, with many lyrics and entire songs devoted to betrayal in a relationship (at one point in her song “Don’t Hurt Yourself,” she says “If you try this sh-t again/You gon’ lose your wife). However, the album ends with themes of reconciliation and forgiveness. As might be expected, the Internet explodes with memes, hot takes and perhaps more importantly, a manhunt for a certain “Becky with the good hair” who is referenced on the song “Sorry.” “Becky With the Good Hair” is one of two figures: either a fictional character who factors heavily into lyrics about infidelity, or an actual person with whom Jay Z cheated on Beyoncé. Whatever the case, the Bey Hive (the singer’s rabid fanbase) and the media devoted a great deal of energy to seeking out “Becky,” at one time pointing to designer Rachel Roy, who had worked with Jay Z. Celebrity chef Rachael Ray, whose name is similar to Roy’s, and hilariously Ray Romano, were also targets of the Hive’s ire. Roy denied the rumors in an interview with People saying “there is no validity to the idea that the song references me personally,” and advocated against bullying. Beyoncé also begins her Formation tour. At the opening show in Miami, she dedicates the song “Halo” to Jay Z with this sweet tribute: “I want to dedicate this song to my beautiful husband, I love you so much.” May 2016: Beyoncé attends the Met Gala sans Jay Z. At a Met Gala after-party, multiple celebs including Rita Ora are spotted wearing “Not Becky” pins. Ora also Snapchats a selfie of herself with Queen Bee, in what one might assume is an attempt to sedate the Bey Hive. A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on May 2, 2016 at 5:17pm PDT February 2017: Beyoncé breaks the Internet with a simple Instagram post announcing that the Knowles-Carter family would be expecting not one but two new additions to the family. We would like to share our love and happiness. We have been blessed two times over. We are incredibly grateful that our family will be growing by two, and we thank you for your well wishes. – The Carters A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on Feb 1, 2017 at 10:39am PST April 2017: On their ninth wedding anniversary, Beyoncé releases a new Tidal exclusive music video filled with lots of intimate home footage for “Die With You,” a song that she debuted in 2015 also on Tidal for the same occasion. A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on Apr 4, 2017 at 11:59am PDT 💙 4.4.17 💙 A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on Apr 4, 2017 at 12:04pm PDT June 2017: After much speculation and waiting, sources confirm to People that the twins arrived. That means Queen Bey has given birth to the two newest heirs to the Knowles-Carter legacy so the Internet, predictably loses its collective mind.
2017.06.14 18:14 Chained_IcarusWhy Persona 4 is Better Than You Think (Or, "How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Teddie")
Disclaimer: I had been working on this for a long time and due to recent events was planning to fully disengage. But I put a lot of work into this so I figured I'd still post it. This was written and tweaked over the course of the last month so the tongue-in-cheek tone doesn't really reflect my current mental state. I hope you enjoy THE TL;DR:
This post will be absolutely riddled with unmarked spoilers for Persona 4 due to its very nature. I will occasionally compare and contrast to Personas 3 and 5 but I'll try to keep that spoiler free as possible. Still, I would ask you exercise caution if you have not completed these games yet. The views expressed below are solely mine and mine alone. They are not to be taken as objective fact. This post is intended for entertainment and to spark debate and analysis. Allow me to preface this by saying I will only be using material from the original Persona 4 unless specifically noted otherwise. While I personally feel Golden is the superior product and fixes a lot of problems, I feel the original stands on its own very well and has less flaws than people realize. As such, I will not be going over things such as Adachi's social link, or anything to do with Marie in this. Before we get into the meat (fsteak) of this, I'd like to address what I perceive as the biggest and most frequent complaints about the game in no particular order. 1. Adachi's Motivation I've heard this one a lot. Adachi only commits his crimes "for the lulz" and "because he's bored." And that's not wrong. The error is in assuming this is somehow a bad or weak motivation. We'll need to touch on three major components to really address this - I'll go into detail further detail on both later in - but they are Adachi's Personality, The Gang's Motivation and The Town of Inaba. With an understanding of those three factors, Adachi's motivation not only make sense - it is a very compelling and terrifying motivation and truly brings him to life as the antagonist. 2. The Gang Screws Around Too Much / Spends No Time Investigating Persona 4 stands out from both its close relatives P3 and P5 in this regard for sure - The Investigation Team (referred to herein as The Gang) spends a lot of time doing things not directly related to the core plot. That is a fact. However it is not "filler" as many have claimed nor does it lack a point other than character / personality building. To understand why these scenes are so integral to the story (but not the main plot point) of Persona 4 we need to fully understand two concepts: The Duality of Yu and Adachi as well as The Nature of the Mystery. Again, I'll go into these more in depth as we move along. 3. Teddie Anyone who knows me knows I adore Teddie. He serves as the game's Navigator 1 (to be replaced by Rise) and this particular title's "Cute Animal Mascot." Many people find him annoying or even useless or a distraction from the plot. In fact, I believe he is immensely important to the plot. Fither has an entertaining video on a theory that Teddie might be Lucifer. While I don't particularly buy into this theory I do think it is a strong one. I have another theory as to Teddie's origins and place within the story. Now let's reach out to the truth, shall we? gunshot The Setting (Or, "Why Small Towns are Great for Murder") We need to quickly compare the settings of Personas 3, 4, and 5 and the circumstances of your being there.
Small Rural Town
Staying with Uncle
Two key differences stand out in Persona 4 from its sisters - The environment you are in is much smaller and disconnected from the rest of the world, and you are immediately placed in a friendly warm environment instead of an indifferent or even hostile one. Let me stress this in simpler terms.
Inaba is a small town isolated from the rest of the world
Yu is immediately given a support system in this town
I'm stressing this because it's very important. Persona 3 puts you as an orphaned student coming back to his original hometown to live with a bunch of strangers and gets IMMEDIATELY pulled into the hostile Dark Hour conspiracy. Persona 5 puts you as a young man on criminal probation staying with a cold and distant family friend in a major city and is quickly caught up in the conspiracies and dangers of that world. In contrast, Yu is taken from his familiar home city (I can't find where it explicitly says Tokyo, but given his dialogue with Yosuke and Adachi that does seem to be the case) and placed in this warm, rural friendly small town with family. Whereas no-one is there to meet you upon arrival in Persona 3 and 5, Yu is immediately greeted by Dojima and Nanako in a warm manner. Dojima even tries to (awkwardly) put you at ease by commenting you look better in person than in the photos. This isn't just to set a lighter tone for the game - this moment is key to Yu's story. 1. Inaba is explicitly a small town If you've ever lived in a small rural town you'll know things happen and work very differently in them compared to cities. Especially when it comes to public services like fire departments and law enforcement. Small towns often have a bare bones police force with practically shoestring budgets. This is important to note - Inaba's police force is NOT equipped to handle the serial murders that begin to afflict the town. They don't even seem to have cameras in their police station (not uncommon for extremely small towns). Even after the murders begin you don't see lockdowns or police roaming the streets or canvasing areas because they simply can't - They don't have the manpower. This is partially why - despite being loose lipped with the information - Adachi is tolerated by Dojima and the rest of the force: They simply can't afford to go without him. It's also why the rest of the force never really suspects him: there is no Internal Affairs branch in Inaba and with such a small force they likely feel like they know him well. Dojima himself spends time with Adachi as a drinking buddy. Cops have generally very tight bonds - especially in small districts - and it takes a lot for them to suspect each other: especially their own partners. The departments extreme lack of resources - and no reason to believe anything supernatural is going on - pretty much guarantees Adachi will never be caught by conventional means: especially since he is on the force himself and able to manipulate things. 2. Small towns lack a variety of things to do Unlike the city where there's always a club open or a movie to go see or a thing to do, small towns often have very little to do besides one or two local attractions. Adachi - like Yu and Yosuke - is originally from a large city (Again, likely Tokyo). He was transferred to Inaba and hates it there. He's extremely bored all the time. He has nothing to do when not working besides watch TV. It is because he's in this environment that he becomes addicted to the TV and a certain TV Announcer in particular. His setting was drastically different from Yu's - He had no one to greet him when he arrived. He had no family. No friends. He spent much of his time alone with nothing to do. This leads into his fixation with his first victim and his willingness to do anything to break the monotony of what he feels is his prison. 3. Small towns rarely get state resources Calling for backup from Tokyo or another large city when the murders begin is rarely an option for small towns. They're considered low priority and it's rare for resources to be diverted to help them out. It would take a high death toll or the death of a very prominent figure to get attention. Until one of these things happen, Inaba is effectively on its own. Conclusions: Inaba is an isolated, small town with very little to do without the resources to properly address the problems that besiege the town - even before you consider the supernatural elements. Adachi (Or "How To Kill Boredom in Three Easy Steps") Adachi's first murder was an accident This is extremely important to remember in his personality and arc. He did not just decide to start killing all of a sudden because "eh, fuck it." He confronts the adulterous TV reporter in the lobby of the Amagi Inn and demands to know if she really was being "unclean." In his obsession he could not fathom his essential "waifu" being a scandalous mistress. When his delusion is shattered and she responds with hostility he angrily shoves her towards the big screen TV of the Inn. He is genuinely surprised and shocked when she falls in. It is not entirely clear how he feels about it initially: Maybe he thought he was crazy, or it was a dream, or she'd just come back out later and no one would believe her. ...And then she turns up dead. Now Adachi isn't an idiot. But he is obsessive, hates to be bored and impulsive. He also is a solid detective. He decides to try and repeat the events of the murder to see if that is actually the cause. He targets another girl he sees as someone with an "unclean" rep - Saki. After all, he had easy access with her at the station and if she turned up dead it could be passed off as the killer wanting to silence a "witness." He approaches her with sexual aggression (again, he believes she is "unclean" like his previous obsession) and after being struck his anger builds and he goes through with throwing her into the TV. In the anime he even mocks her at this point, saying he might come after her before laughing and dismissing the Shadow World as a "death trap" he would never enter. Saki now turns up dead and he has confirmed the method works. And like all serial killers he now has a type: Women he sees as "unclean" or "sluts." The police are still investigating events at the Amagi Inn and good ol' Yukiko Amagi has a reputation for being a prude on the outside - but a secret slut. He targets her next. Note: It may have been Namatame who threw Yukiko in, instead of Adachi, which just means he chose to use a proxy earlier than speculated below. And that's when his plan goes sideways. In this instance The Gang intervenes and Yukiko is not killed. Adachi is now aware there's another force at play that may be derailing his plans but he's excited by this prospect. It is at this time he manipulates Namatame into 'saving' the next few victims so he can attempt to puzzle it out in relative safety. He (as seen in the fog) becomes frustrated as they continue to be saved: not because they're being saved specifically but because he can't figure out HOW they are being saved or WHO is doing it. This changes when he finally discovers Yu and the Gang are the ones behind derailing his plans. This genuinely excites him: His misison now is a game. He has an opponent. He sends the threatening letters to Yu not in an attempt to get Yu to stop - he knows better - but to essentially say "I see you" and egg him on. This is extremely consistent with the behavior of most serial killers: they like to leave clues and taunt those chasing them. And Adachi has been unknowingly doing this to The Gang all along. The reason Adachi openly talks about the murders in front of The Gang is because Serial Killers need their work to be recognized. He doesn't specifically know The Gang is the ones stopping him, but he figures taunting the nephew of head detective Dojima with some details - kids at that - can't really get him in much trouble while letting him backhand brag about his crimes. Adachi has cultivated a persona (ha!) of somewhat bumbling idiot so people don't really think twice about it.
His motivation for continuing is his boredom - but that motivation is a mirror.
The Gang begins their counter-ops FOR THE SAME REASONS. This is explicitly brought up when fighting Yosuke's Shadow. Yosuke didn't convince Yu to go back into the shadow realm to "find out" what happened to Saki (And subsequently save others), but because he was bored and wanted something to do to break it up. Yu - despite being mostly a blank slate - is shown to also be immensely curious and not fond of down time either. He is constantly trying to find new things to do and ways to pass his time in Inaba. The Gang forms and begins their missions because of the same reason Adachi did - boredom. The major difference between Yu and Adach is their reception into Inaba: Yu immediately had connections and friends and bonds to move him forward on a brighter path. Adachi did not. Yu and Adachi were two sides of the same coin - This is further enforced by the Persona Adachi uses (and even given a slight nod in the US dub, with Yu and Adachi sharing the same voice actor). This motivation is also what ultimately makes Adachi redeemable - unlike P5's traitor. Not only does Adachi have a much lower body count but he is able to relate to and sympathize with Yu - and Yu does the same. Adachi ultimately owns up to his crimes and takes full responsibility. While not in the core game, Adachi's motivation for getting involved in Persona 5 Arena Ultimax is SPECIFICALLY to stop Sho from killing more people within the Shadow World, suspecting it will make bodies appear from attenaes again and shift guilt AWAY from Adachi. Adachi does not want anyone else blamed for his crimes (partly because of his change of heart, partly because he is still a serial killer and wants the credit). Adachi is not to be forgiven, but he can be understood. There is a reason he remains popular amongst fans (and is a hoot to play in Ultimax). Adachi is truly the "Nega-Yu." P5 Spoiler. The Gang's Antics (Or "The King's Game is Best Game") The obvious lead in is, again, there isn't much to do in Inaba. To combat the boredom the Gang chooses to spend time together in various activities they can find to combat this boredom. "But Icarus!" I hear someone, likely u/jarinjove, calling out from behind a veritable wall of "Akechi is Bae" posters - "They need to spend more time investigating instead of screwing around!!!" I'll concede they named their team poorly (The Investigation Team does... practically none of it), but it makes sense - They can't.
1. Again, Inaba is a small town
They have no way of going around and collecting any real murder information without IMMEDIATELY drawing attention to themselves. This is a very bad thing because
2. Yu and Yosuke are already on Dojima's radar
Both were already arrested - very early on - for carrying weapons in public. Dojima becomes increasingly suspicious of Yu as the game goes on. It also doesn't help that you start hanging out with known delinquent Kanji.
3. The Murderer is in Inaba
The team knows the murderer is someone in the town and most of them have already been targeted once. They don't want to draw attention to themselves (unfortunately, they are bad at it and Adachi definitely figures it out).
4. The Murders are Supernatural
There's already insanely little physical real-world evidence of what is going on. As far as they can tell it is just someone shoving people into a TV and almost everyone owns a TV. They have nothing to really go on in the real world TO investigate so they're relegated to a reactive role. Persona 4 at its core is not really a murder mystery - It's a Super Hero game. Superman can't save people BEFORE they're in danger - but he can sure as hell beat that locomotive to shit before it runs over Lois. The team reacts to those in danger and slowly pieces together clues from what the victims remember. That's legitimately the best they can do with the resources they have.
5. They are genuinely friends with a strong bond
This I feel is the biggest contrast of P4 from P3 and P5. In P3 you basically have co-workers in SEES who you can choose to bond with if you choose to do so but they remain primarily politely distant otherwise. In P5 it's similar - they're your cohorts and compatriots but they aren't really friends in the traditional sense. You're partners in an endeavor. The two standouts are Ann and Ryuji - especially Ryuji - because they got in before the Phantom Thieves really became a thing and Ryuji wanted to be your friend even before then (and Ann shared a vulnerable moment and hung out with you before then as well). None of the team's time together is really spent doing anything OTHER than talking about WORK. In P4, you actively SAVE every single party member - and actively see the ugly sides of them they didn't want you to see in the process. You really get to know what makes that person tic and you see them at their most vulnerable... and then literally save their lives. It establishes a pretty close bond and the Gang seems to genuinely enjoy each other's company. While not in the core game, in the Persona 4: Anime we do get to briefly see Yu's shadow. It confirms what the game only hinted at: Yu's fear is being alone and leaving his friends. Their bond is important because they don't have a "grand mission" - There is no world threatening shadow invasion in the Dark Hour. There is no national conspiracy to take over Tokyo and murder hundreds of people. There is one villain in a small isolated town that they happen to be in - a villain they have - so far - been highly successful in stopping. To use another Super Hero analogy - Spider-Man fights the Green Lantern and still finds time to go to school, hit on Gwen Stefani and play some video games with Markiplier. They save the day then go pretend to get drunk and play darts. Teddie (Or "The True Onii-Chan") Oh Teddie "HELLO LADIES" Ruckspinlastnamespeculative. Probably one of the biggest dividing factors of Persona 4. But he's amazing and by the the time I'm done explaining why you'll probably still disagree with me. I'm gonna risk it. Teddie is the "facilitator" of the game. He provides the Gang with the glasses to see in the fog (although Yu doesn't explicitly need them), gives them the initial info on the workings of the Shadows and Shadow world and despite his goofy nature and constant hound-dogging he's a source of comfort for most of the cast. He's explicitly a Shadow (which causes him some existential crisis) but he acts nothing like the others, manages to simply go into the real world and grow himself a body. He is also able to enter the Velvet Room (with, surprisingly, neither Igor or Margaret present). He's a mystery and there's been a few theories on what or who he actually is.
The previously mentioned Lucifer
Yu's original shadow
Just a fun goofy mascot
But I'm here to posit another theory. First we need to establish what a Shadow is.
They are born from humans, and carry with them human emotions, which are mostly negative. Strong-willed Shadows attract lesser Shadows, which later create stronger Shadows.
Now we know that while they are mostly negative, they are not ALL negative. Purged of their negative side, shadows in P4 turn into the creator's Persona, after expressing things like relief and happiness. So here begs the question: If Shadows are born of human desire, what if a human had a desire so intensely strong it created a particularly strong willed shadow. What if that desire was pure in its intentions? What if the person was dead? I posit this theory on Teddie's origins: he is the final, pure desire of a now deceased character. We need only figure out whose desire and what that desire was. And why he's a bear. And I think the game answers that.
1. The desire was one of protection and guidance
Our mysterious Teddie-maker brought the bear to life with a pure and burning desire to offer guidance and protection to her loved ones: her family. Her doubt and fear of being unable to do so herself are a part of Teddie: he struggles heavily with self doubt and identity crisis. His creator would have done the same: who is she if she cannot be there for her family. This person deeply cared for her family and likely felt regret in being unable to continue in that role which she devoted herself to.
2. But there's a second desire: one for answers.
Teddie is immensely driven (despite being non-chalant about it) about discovering his origins and what happened to him to make him this way. He plays it off when amongst friends but expresses it candidly when alone with Yu or in a more vulnerable moment. It keeps him up at night. It bothers him. It eats away at him. In the end of his Social Link, he comes to terms with the fact he'll probably never know where he came from or what he truly is - but he knows what he is now. He's your friend. He has people in his life he cares about and wants to protect. He has a family. And family is everything to Teddie.
3. He's a bear because of who he was made FOR
He's drawn to Yu because of who he was made for. He was imagined and designed to be friendly. Comforting. Non threatening. Kind of goofy and silly looking. Like a child's toy they might sleep with for comfort or hug tight in a storm. Teddie was made for Nanako - and took to Yu quickly because - even if Teddie didn't know it at the time - Yu was Nanako's family. So Teddie was born of a final wish to provide guidance and protection and comfort to Nanako Dojima. Teddie is the dying desire of Chisato Dojima... mixed with the fears of Ryotaro Dojima. Ryotaro's entire S-Link is about him coming to terms with never finding out who killed his wife or how exactly things went down. We're only told it was a hit and run. Dojima accepts that some mysteries cannot be solved nor do they need to be - to let go of the past and focus on the future. What's important: His family. Nanako. You. Teddie has a very similar arc and experience. Teddie guides Yu through the shadow world without exactly knowing why: He's instantly drawn to you. He provides the means to see through the fog and kickstarts your desire to "reach out to the truth." He goes SUPER RAGE MODE and acts like a - dare I say it - MAMA BEAR during the Rise fight when his family is backed into a corner. The only other time we see him genuinely lose his cool and turn grim and dark is when Nanako is in danger... And boy is he ever fond of and protective of Nanako.
"BUT WHAT ABOUT TEDDIE'S PERVERT NATURE?!" - u/weirderbean. Probably.
He's a misguided attempt at a "Prince Charming." He's flirtatious but never really crude about it. He tries to treat all the girls like princesses (and awkwardly takes it too far). He's like a badly written "gary sue" fanfic prince character. He does not possess the exact personality or memories of the Dojima family and is likely heavily influenced by the TV world he lived in - He quotes a lot of TV and pop culture references and his flirtatious acts heavily mirror the eye rolling over the top stuff that we see on TV. His human form is very princely (complete with frilled shirt and rose) and he's very charming yet still effeminate and sensitive. I conclude Teddie is the fragmented Shadow of Chisato Dojima. A loving, dying mother's will to see her family safe and cared for in her absence. It ties back heavily into the theme of bonds, family and the fear of being alone that runs throughout the entire game. The rest of the game I feel stands on its own without my needing to really elaborate. It is a strong game with strong themes of small town problems, family bonds and the effects of isolation and media on the mind. That last one is particularly interesting in light of Persona 5 being released. Consider this for a moment... The Gang in P4 meets up in person a lot. They spend a lot of time in actual close, physical proximity to each other. There is very little communication over phones and other means. You see them constantly together, doing things, bonding, fighting, etc. The Phantom Thieves primarily communicate and interact over text messages in a group chat. They're not seen together very often at all - the occasional 1 on 1 with Joker is requested but almost never any group outings and they don't seem to spend any time with each other when you're not around (contrast to P4, where we know Teddie lives with Yosuke, Chie and Yukiko are very close friends, Kanji seems to hit it off really well with Naoto and Rise is thirsty as all hell for Yu). They seem to spend time together even if you're not actively around. There is a sense of their lives continuing on without you where everyone else seems to be on permanent "standby" in P5 for Joker. IN CONCLUSION (Or, "Icarus Plz, Stahp") Persona 4 is not a game about a bunch of goofy kids stumbling their way through a murder mystery to stop a bored sociopath with the help of their inner demons and weird bear friend. Persona 4 is a game about the bonds of family, the unique problems of small town living, the dangers of isolation and the oversaturation of media. It is about a mother's love that never truly dies. It is about accepting and making vulnerable the worst parts of ourselves in order to grow closer with others. It is the ultimate story of community. The human spirit. The meaning of life. Thank you for your time. (PS - the meaning of life is Teddie. Just wanted to clear that up) Edit: Thanks for the gold, anonymous!
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