Featured, Pop Culture

Beyonce Derangement Hyperbole Syndrome

beyonce

I met a dozen or so people for brunch Sunday afternoon, a meet-up that was the brainchild of my wife and one of her friends to combine our collective love of bacon and bottomlessness to a need to do something about the disconnect in the Black professional population here instead of just talking about it. The goal is to do this each month at a different location, have the group expand, and possibly even incorporate some organic civic good besides the itis.

So, what did this diverse group of Pittsburghers — a collection of writers, engineers, and politicians and shit transplanted from Orlando and Brooklyn and Denver and Philadelphia and Boston (many of whom were meeting for the first time) — spend the first half hour of brunch bonding over?

Beyonce.

Beyonce gave me my whole entire life last night” said the woman who was recently elected regional president of a national organization — proof that she was, in fact, alive before watching Beyonce on HBO Saturday night.

After I saw her show this summer, I left thinking I could accomplish anything” said the woman who, by her 29th birthday, already had a masters degree from one of the best schools in the country, a business, and a day officially dedicated to her by the mayor of Pittsburgh. This woman has also expressed she’d leave her husband for Beyonce. Coincidentally, I am this woman’s husband.

Those of you on any type of social media Saturday night probably witnessed something similar, where a taped performance of a woman everyone has seen before performing a bunch of songs everyone has heard before caused everyone to, for lack of a better term, lose their fucking minds.

All I need is God, Febreeze and Beyonce” one oddly-worded status message claimed.

This concert is everything I’ve ever needed in my life” said the least ambitious person ever.

Beyonce is an alien, and we are her conquered masses” said someone who I made sure to immediately defriend.

Some even uploaded pictures of the concert on their televisions. Not still images from the concert. But pictures of their actual televisions while Beyonce was on screen.  

This abnormal behavior has become expected, even synonymous with Beyonce events, which makes her historically unique in one regard.

Maybe Michael Jackson was more universal and transcendent. Maybe Madonna was more influential. And maybe Prince made more people ponder questions like “If Prince is the only man I’d sleep with, does that make me gay?” But no one — at least no one in my lifetime — has made people exaggerate the way Beyonce does. She is not just a singer. Her “voice lapdances on souls.” She is not just an entertainer. Her concerts make people “lose their religion and get it back before intermission.” She does not perform. She “snatches wigs and edges and wayward teeth.” She is not just pretty. She is “so fucking flawless it makes me want to leap inside my own mouth in shame.” She is not just a wife and a mother. She is “the reason I started believing in Black love again.

Perhaps this Beyonce Derangement Hyperbole Syndrome is just a byproduct of how social media influences our communication. If everyone is talking about how great Beyonce is, the only way your words will stand out is if you go above and beyond with your description of her greatness. Maybe her work ethic and inability to find a seat has an osmosis effect on her fans. She goes the extra mile with entertaining them, and they go the extra mile with describing her. And maybe she’s just in the Illuminati, and her performances are subliminal instructions to release all earthly possessions and start worshipping Zylot, the groundhog warlord.

And maybe all of this exaggeration aint exactly exaggeration. Maybe Beyonce really does give people the gift of life. Maybe she actually does lapdance on souls. Maybe she will literally snatch your edges.

I don’t know. I do know though, that, if true, she needs to stay the hell away from my wife.

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Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a columnist for GQ.com and EBONY Magazine. And a founding editor for 1839. And he's working on a book of essays to be published by Ecco (HarperCollins). Damon is busy. He lives in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes. Reach him at damon@verysmartbrothas.com. Or don't. Whatever.

  • I’m waiting for Ruby to come get this verbal beatdown after my boys SPANKED the Panthers AND it turned to Heinz Field South like I told her it was…….In regards to the Beyonce complex, I totally get why females are so enamored with her. She is currently wearing the crown of “Best Entertainer Alive” and its not even close. It’s like Obama with black people circa 2008.

    • Jay

      Yonce 2016-Yass B*tch We Can

      • The scary thing is I could see her polling well, and maybe f*cking around and winning a few primaries. LOL

        • Tish Harris

          Easily.

          • Jacqueline Brougher

            Campaign slogan: Be flawless

        • Sigma_Since 93

          Dem people would bring up Jay’s past as a smear campaign.

          • And her pops….

            • Jay

              And Solange

              • Sigma_Since 93

                Pops was just humping around so that’s not a big deal.

                Jay’s spouting off about his ties with Cuba = not a good look come primary time.

          • I’m waiting for the ads Keri Helson would cut in support of the competition. Her and RihRih would become political kingmakers in the US. LOL

            • Sigma_Since 93

              Keri and RihRih would be like the Koch Sisters of music *spewing Beyonce hate* LOL

          • PhlyyPhree

            I mean, the Kennedy’s got away with it. As long as she can prove that she only used HER money to fund her campaign, I don’t see why it would matter

            • Sigma_Since 93

              The bottom line is would be would folks want a known BLACK drug dealer (if he/she’s white it’s alright) in the White House??? Even if dude has no power.

              • Jay

                Zero convictions. Zero proof.

                • Sigma_Since 93

                  Would that make Jay a fraud a la Rick Ross?????

                  • I refuse to believe “92 bricks”, he’d get killed twice

            • Jay

              Speaking of which, anyone see the introduction of Joseph Kennedy on Boardwalk Empire last night. B.E., even in it’s final season is mad underrated. Perfect blend of historical and fictional characters/events.

              • PhlyyPhree

                Didn’t. Was gonna get my OnDemand on during lunch today. Boardwalk Empire has really changed my life. I was late to the party, but I’m still surprised that it’s fandom isn’t larger

                • Jay

                  Did it really change or life or did you just post the most meta comment ever??

                  • PhlyyPhree

                    I was staying consistent with the theme of the day. WHY WON”T YOU LET ME BE GREAT?! All these haters.

                    *Actually, it kind of has changed my life. I watch it during lunch while I workout, so it’s made it a lot easier for me to finish the cardio portions of my workout. I can’t necessarily attribute that entirely to BE because I rotate three shows during cardio, but it has played a significant portion in altering my workouts, which have in turn, changed my life..

          • Or Jay could be used as All-American Story, “a young Black
            youth turns from a life of crime to become a successful business, man (not to be confused with businessman) and musician.”

            • Jay

              aka the truth.

            • Sigma_Since 93

              *goes into the review booth for review*

              Despite the clever lyrical reference, the rebuttal is overturned according to the Chris Rock rulebook.

              • I’ll give you their trip to Cuba, but even that can be
                turned into “a cultural exploration to personally examine the failings of a communist government” Are you referring to the Chris Rock rule about rappers and demo tapes?

                • Sigma_Since 93

                  I was referring to the Chris Rock book of Black’s don’t get a pass for conducting the same illegal activity White’s do.

      • Wild Cougar

        I can not

    • Funny u mention the steelers, I had made a point on twitter that Steelers fans trend to ride out for their fellow fans and against rivals more than the team itself. The biggest Bey stans online aren’t at shows they are on YouTube going ham at naysayers

      • To be honest, I find a lot of our fans as obnoxious as other people do. Try listening to talk radio around here. Its HORRIBLE. But I will go IN on fans of teams I hate, so you got me there. The question I have is, who do Bey fans really hate?

        • That’s the thing Bey has no real rivals that’s why they attack otherwise irrelevant singers like Keri Hilson and Keyshia Cole

    • You rang?

      • What happened to yall??? LOL

        • A slew of injuries. Bad play calling. Even worse execution. Idk what else to say. The Steelers capitalized off of our fkuc ups.

          • Neptunes presents The Clones

            Or the team is just a bad team,shrug

            • I don’t even know of you well enough for you to be making some wild azz statement about my squad to me like that.

              • Neptunes presents The Clones

                The defense failed to protect Cam. They were run out of the stadium and that fumble on a punt was just sad.

                • The defense’s job isn’t to protect Cam though. Anything football related coming from you is hence forth considered null and void.

                  • Neptunes presents The Clones

                    You are going to have a long season ducky

                    • When you can run down the duties of the defense vs offense come back and let me know.

                    • Neptunes presents The Clones

                      Sure,i won’t mind coming back to you

                  • Val

                    If my team hadn’t just got its first win yesterday I’d be giving you a lot of ish about your loss last night. But, right now I’m just so happy not to have to deal with being 0 and 3 that I’m not going to say a word.

                    • I’m glad you’ve decided to stay in you lane :-) Who’d y’all play?

                    • Val

                      Don’t push it, lady. Lol We beat the Texans. Which is a good sign. They have a decent team this year.

                    • Ehhh I guess. But honestly, everyone who we thought would be dominant in their respective divisions has lost at this point. It’s going to be an interesting season.

                    • Val

                      We who? I knew the Niners were going to suck this season. The previous three seasons they were still playing and behaving the way Mike Singletary trained them. Now MIke has worn off and this is totally Harbaugh’s Niners. No discipline what-so-ever.

                    • Singletary wasn’t a good coach. His act got old and they tuned him out. Harbaugh came in and things were okay and now they are tuning him out. Coaches with abrasive personalities lose teams. It happened Gruden in Tampa too.

                    • Val

                      I don’t get how you can say Singletary wasn’t a good coach? The evidence says otherwise. He changed the culture of the team and they had success.

                      Harbough came in on a strike shortened pre-season. They barely even worked with him before the season started and yet they had a great season. That was Mike Singletary’s influence even though Harbaugh got the credit.

                    • Didn’t Samurai Mike have a .45% winning percentage?

                    • Val

                      He might have, Wu, but you know that it takes 3 or 4 years to turn an NFL team around. Remember Tony Dungy’s Bucs.

                • Val

                  They show live NFL games in London? Interesting.

                  • Neptunes presents The Clones

                    You can watch the games live online. And i am not in London

                    • Val

                      Sorry, Brixton then. No need to be all technical about your location tough.

                    • Neptunes presents The Clones

                      You are an odd sort of bird ey,but i like you

                    • Val

                      This spy routine is getting old, Sahel.

                    • Neptunes presents The Clones

                      Lady,i’m not a spy. Infact i’m not even active anymore

                    • Val

                      Fine then. Where do you live?

                    • Neptunes presents The Clones

                      How about them Jets this year

                    • Val

                      It’s about 8:30pm in London, right. So you have a good evening.

          • Hopefully, yall can shake off this beatdown in time to take out the ratbirds…

            • I’m hoping so. I’d rather take a tough loss in the beginning of the season to a non-division team than in week 10-15 when things are down to the wire. Everyone needs to get healthy and for those who are #NextManUp

              • That schedule yall got aint no joke! Better get healthy in a hurry…

            • Epsilonicus

              Dont you ever speak so ill of the Ravens again, especially after that Ray Rice treatment you all got from us.

              • Ya’ll still gotta come see us up here so we will have our revenge!!

                • Epsilonicus

                  Keep yakking Squeelers.

  • I have to concur. I don’t want to snitch on myself too much, but the party I was at Saturday night was…um, how do I put this? Eyes Wide Shut, the Real Life Edition, featuring a DJ who knows their techno and EDM? I mean this was crunk by my standards. Anyway, there were still sisters there talmbout how they wanted to catch Beyonce on DVR or the repeats.

    I was shocked off of my a$$. Like wait…you’re surrounded by enough stuff that if Jesus came back that moment, we’d be on the express line to H3ll, and you have the presence of mind to mention Beyonce?

    Yeah…she da truth. LOL

    • Wild Cougar

      Those parties are not that much different from regular life. The only difference is men say what’s on their minds. Way more thrilling for the men.

      • Perhaps men should say what’s on their minds more often. Reducing BS is a worthwhile goal, and I support any means in that direction.

        • Wild Cougar

          That would lead to women becoming lesbians and getting in vitro to have kids.

          • Neptunes presents The Clones

            Still a win

        • Freebird

          fcuk men. whats best about these parties (now that i can speak on it) is that women get to say what is on their minds. it’s simply beautiful and makes one hopeful.

          • trollsohard

            “now that i can speak on it”

            When couldn’t you speak on it?

  • Tish Harris

    Beyonce is snatching wives and miraculously changing lives.

    • Damon Young

      if she comes at my wife, i’ll just have to seduce tina

      • Tish Harris

        The Gay Reindeer won’t mind…she’ll be scoring touchdowns on runways and living it up on a yacht with Bey & Blue. I’m sure she’ll send you a post card…she loves you.

  • kayleb

    Inquiring minds want to know: Are you in witness protection after writing this?

    • PhlyyPhree

      Look. I’m not even sure I should be writing anything in response to this article right now. I KNOW my IP address is public….

    • Damon Young

      …and why would I share that information? you’re not working for them, are you?

  • Jacqueline Brougher

    All facts! I, too, tweeted song lyrics and “Werk/yaaaas bitches” in my living, but miss me with the “Giving me life” and “snatching edges.” Social media takes EVERYTHING to another-other level.

  • Jay

    Yeah, it’s social media. Nobody knows how to enjoy anything alone anymore. We have to let the world know i.e. IGing your sushi roll or your martini, only everyone is sharing the same martini so it becomes a competition to see who can enjoy( or appear to enjoy) it the most.

    • Its fascinating to watch, really. Fapping, alcoholism, bacon, people really just wanna be seen

    • PhlyyPhree

      But you know what? Part of what made it so enjoyable for me was being able to “watch” it with a larger group of my “friends”. When I attended the concert, I was only able to go with two friends and that was cool, however, collectively being able to attend it with my folk via twitter made it that much better. The sharing provided by social media was a bonus to me at that point

  • Val

    I think in the age of everyone has an opinion that they’re going to share on social media, hyperbole is the way people try to standout from the crowd. So, no, it’s not Bey, hyperbolic speech is just the norm now. And, it is now how we speak to each other even when we’re face-to-face, sadly.

    • CrayolaGirl

      Yes, people do it for d@mn near everything on line.

    • exactly.
      every album dropped is a classic and the best or worst ever in the history of recorded music.
      orrrrr.. it was just good. smh.

      • Jay

        I don’t listen to Chris Brown but I swear that every FB status or tweet or article that I see about his new album is just like this. It’s either amazing or pure garbage.

      • Lea Thrace

        musical hyperbole grinds my gears.

      • Val

        Exactly. So the question is; how much truly great music am I missing since I’ve started to tune out all the hype? Some albums are great but how can I distinguish that talk from all the other over-the-top talk?

        • EXACTLY.

        • LadyIbaka

          There is sooooo much talent out there that goes undiscovered, because well, the artist does not or will not conform to mainstream ‘standards’. It’s up to individuals to unearth these artistes of their own initiative, otherwise if you are waiting for Universal, Def Jam and whoever else to present you with new sounds, you might as well seat tight and wait for Jehovah’s return.

          • I see where you’re coming from, but the mainstream is just that…MAINSTREAM. If you’re an outfit that is trying to appeal to as broad an audience as possible, you’re going to have to fit a mold. Bland is, and always will be, popular. Complaining that Def Jam isn’t checking for an underground artist is like complaining that McDonald’s doesn’t make artisanal burgers with locally sources beef, cheese and vegetables; it’s not their job to feed rarefied tastes.

            • LadyIbaka

              I hear ya.

            • t_99

              IKR! If you hate the mainstream, then you have to look for news, music, etc OUT of the mainstream. It’s why I appreciate the uniqueness that one can find at farmer’s markets, festivals, public/internet radio, and Spotify so much.

    • That’s exactly why I don’t eff with social media very much during sports any more. Everything is overblown.

  • The Beyhive is just an e-sorority for women who didn’t pledge in college.

    • Damon Young

      shots fired?

    • RewindingtonMaximus
    • h.h.h.

      The Beyhive is just an e-sorority for women who didn’t pledge in college.

      http://mrwgifs.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Puss-In-Boots-Oooh-Cat-Reaction-Gif.gif

    • This is probably accurate…

    • Skegeeaces

      If I didn’t know so many AKAs and Deltas who were also her neophytes, I’d be inclined to agree. The love of Beyonce knows no boundaries! LOL

      • I didn’t mean literally, I mean most Beyonce fans just like being a part of something more than they actually like her

        • Skegeeaces

          Ah! I thought you were saying the Beyhive consisted of a certain “type”. Heehee!

          • SororSalsa

            Yes…the type that will irrationally spend way too much time on Twitter devoted to e-thugging on anyone who dares not to worship the Beygency. If I were on Twitter, I’m sure I would’ve been dragged many times by now.

            • Skegeeaces

              Haha, yeah I’ve seen her worshipers pounce before. It’s kind of sad, actually. I’m like, “Is Beyonce paying you bills? Does she know your name- or that you exist even? Did she die for your sins? And yet you’re out here losing your mind for her. LOL”

      • MacMama

        Say That! #AKA #Beygency

    • Epsilonicus
    • MacMama

      I am a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and an equally proud member of the Beyhive. #Flawless

      • The fact you view these as equals does lends credence to my point….just saying lol

        • MacMama

          The fact that you view this as serious proves that you need to go make your life, I mean seriously? Even the author was tongue in cheek, and you’re out here dead azz serious..
          I

          • I was clearly speaking in jest, take the next left out your feelings sweetie.

    • aico

      This is the greatest thing I’ve ever read.

  • panamajackson

    I wasn’t there and I didn’t see it but I’m pretty sure that I was there and saw her walk across Lake Minnetonka. Prince was there too and he gasped. Because he had never seen doves cry, he only had heard it before, but Beyonce made doves cry and Prince saw it and now he’s going to re-write the Purple Rain album to factor in what happened to him when he saw Beyonce.

    I can’t prove any of this but I was there for it all and saw it.

    • LOL

      • trollsohard

        You may wanna use a larger gif next time.

    • Damon Young

      i wasnt there either. but i did wake up more flawless than usual the day after it aired

    • Deanna J

      ^^^ This was damn fantastic.

  • Sigma_Since 93

    I have nothing. I am looking for all those Panther fans that were talking smack last week. *looks for AP and her klan*

    • Was it you I told that ECU was going to blow UNC out?

      • Sigma_Since 93

        Nope.

        It felt good to go 2 for 2; beating to snot out of UNC and the Panthers this weekend.

        • At the moment there are no “great” teams in the NFL. Just a handful of “good” ones.

          • Val

            Free agency makes it hard to create a great team.

    • Guess what? We still at the top of the division. I am STILL going to be flapping my gums about the Panthers. I will say, I knew that we were taking this L after the 3rd quarter got started. I don’t know if I’ve ever cursed more in life.

      G O
      C A T S!!!!!!!!!!

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