What’s Your Religion?

jesusFor the record, and before we begin, “Jerry, let the record refleck…” that I’m not using the term religion in the Bible/Torah/Talmud/Qu’ran, Holy Trinity and you’re out, type of way.

Naw, we’re going to use it in a different way. Allow me to explain.

Can I kick it?

Yes you can.

Can I kick it?

Yes you can.

Can I kick it?

Yes you can.

Well I’m gone.

For years and years, eons even, religion has been the source of more conflict than a Chris Brown interview. It’s gotten to the point where people have to write articles about the difficulty of interfaith relationships. On Love & Hip-Hop: NY we see how Consequence, his teeth, and Jen the Pen can’t seem to live happily ever after because he has turned his religion into an immovable object. She is not a Muslim. He is. He refuses to allow their mixtie son to even observe non-Muslim holidays, etc. Like Christmas. Because that’s his word.

See it’s not enough that two people have religion. Religion has to be shared. For the record, I understand this. I get why folks wouldn’t want to cross their God-sabers. Different faiths come with different rules and guidelines. Shucks, one religion says don’t eat that swine, one says don’t eat that lamb, one says don’t eat that monkey. I’m paraphrasing. In fact, it seems we only all agree on chicken. And I’m pretty sure I’m making that up. Eat mor chikin.

I’m losing my religion here. Back to the lecture at hand. The point is, two folks can have that old timmmmmme religion, but if it doesn’t match, well, you get chaos. I think at times its almost better (should this interfaith or faith-and-not situation arise) that one person has it and the other doesn’t give a flying f*ck. But people always give f*cks. It’s what people do.

So as Jesus said to the guy he was asking, “what’s your religion?” (that doesn’t have to be religion)??

Well for me, it’s music. Music is my religion. You know, when I’m not being religious. How does this work? Or what brought this to my attention?

Have you ever, ever, ever in your long legged life seen a long legged sailor with a long legged wife? No? Me neither.

But in the midst of a conversation recently with a person who is a music head/snob like I can be at times, I discovered that while we both were extremely fond of music as a whole, our tastes varied so widely that it was eye opening. For one, I discovered that this friend is one of those mainstream-rap-is-not-hip-hop people, a camp I’m staunchly not in. Then came the kicker. In the midst of a convo about Kid Cudi and my assertion that he is the best accessory rapper (you know makes everything sound better by virtue of his presence) in hip-hop and citing Kanye West’s beautiful masterpiece, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, she posited that she wasn’t even familiar with it or his work for real.

Sccccccrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

Say heffa say wha?

Say heffa say wha?

Oh no she didn’t.

Oh no she didn’t.

It was totally amazing to me to think that somebody could be unfamiliar with one of the biggest artists in hip-hop critically lauded albums…as a fan of the artform. Even hip-hop heads respect Kanye’s artistry. Not this one. Nope. She gave no f*cks. And for me, it seems like willful ignorance. It’s like people who buy Zune’s (do they still exist?) because they don’t want to purchase Apple products. It’s impossible to not be familiar with Jay-Z. It just is. But to specifically not pay attention to Kanyeeevel. I ain’t even say you had to like him, but to not pay attention or even know songs on one of the most lauded albums in years, hate it or love it?

#cmonson

While that’s all well and good, it made me realize that music could be just as divisive a force as regular religion for me. I’m the kind of person who can appreciate and love pop music. Cobra Starship “You Make Me Feel” is just as dope as any underground song. Same with Rihanna’s “We Found Love”. I siiiiiiiiiiiiiiing, because I’m haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaappy. But I can’t discriminate because I’ll miss out on too much.

But…but…I have to respect other people’s views and means for listening. And try not to judge. Lord knows when it comes to music there isn’t an argument I’m not willing to have. And girl I’ll house you. And judge your tastes. I’m like a Dilla Donut, workinonit. It’s hard though. You can’t send me some crap that’s hot because its not mainstream. Ya bish. Just because 12 people know it doesn’t make it exclusive. It probably makes it trash.

Hashtag gospel.

Hashtag yeah I said it.

That was harsh. I apologize. See what music made me do? Plant a flag. Iron Flag. Two people with vastly different tastes in the same thing can get along. Clearly. If Mary Matalin and James Carville can get along and be married then its possible. But it also helps if you just agree to never discuss those things at home over dinner. Or in a boat. On a moat. In a chair. Over there. But people who are passionate need to outlet their passion. It ain’t passion if you ain’t passionate.

Message. Knowledge my brother, use it or lose it.

So music is my religion. Clearly. It’s uplifting and encouraging and can be as divisive as North Korea making the quadratic formula the official language of Mongolia.

What?

Also notice I never said anybody was wrong or right. It’s religion, we’ll all find out when we’re dead. Word to Father Abraham.

It’s Friday. Good morning. Good afternoon. Good night.

What’s your religion?

Talk to me.

-VSB P aka THE ARSONIST aka MR. GET YO SH*T AND GET OUT BUT LEAVE MY D’ANGELO VOODOO ALBUM aka GIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIRL HE A 3

 

The Rapture

What? You say this is the wrong Rapture? Well, in my house every time my mama says Rapture she's talking about Anita. You tell Jesus to get a different name for it. This is classic.

Well, assuming that Harold Camping is right, this may very well be the last VSB post for a long time. At least until somebody else comes and restarts civilization. Just so you all know, it’s been the best of times, it’s been the worst of times. Call me Ishmael. Oh, and danger Will Robinson. Deuces.

Now for those unfamiliar with what I’m talking about or who just had a heart attack, according to Mr. Camping, May 21, 2011 at 6pm has been prophesied as the date and approximate time of the Rapture. I’ll assume that most of us here know that this signifies the return of Jesus to gather his saints while chaos then ensues. We’re mostly Black here, you’ve been to church.

So what does this mean for VSB? Well, since the world is also predicted to end five months from then, those of us who don’t get chose will be getting our I Am Legend on dodging chaos, 2 dollar hoes, and Bishop Eddie Long. Obviously, we’ll be too busy to post anything…ya know, assuming Jesus decides to get rollin’ in his ’64.

Serious question time: If Jesus had a car, what do you think he’d listen to on long drives across the nation?

UPDATE: It must be actually happening, the Centers for Disease Control…yes, that one, the gov’t funded research arm of reason has prepared a Zombie Apocolypse Survival Guide. Kill me. Hmm, pun.

Well all this talk about the Rapture got me thinking of two things: 1) the KRS-One song “Step Into The World (Rapture)” because it contains one of my favorites lines of all time, “I’m not saying I”m number one, oh, I’m sorry, I lied/I’m number one, two, three, four, and five…” And seeing as that’s how I live my life, how else could I approach livin’ in these last days of time, check yourself, and what you feed your mind, since ya know, you can’t be blind living in the future. No boogiemonster. 2) It also got me to thinking about what I’d like to accomplish between now and the potential Zombie Apocolypse which I suppose would technically begin at 601pm? Not sure if that’s Eastern, Pacific or what, but given the NY media news bias, I’m gonna assume that God is on that East Coast Sh*t too. I kind of wonder how long it would take for Jesus to gather his saints. With the advent of Twitter it would probably be much easier…he could just DM everybody or @reply everybody on his list of “saved – #leggo”. These are the things that keep me up at night.

Point is, it’s possible that we’ve all got under 36 hours to get done what you need to get done. For some of you that might involve getting saved, for others it might involve getting some for the first and last times. But since we’re all family, here’s my Rapture Bucket List…assuming I have two days left:

1. Do my laundry

Word.life. I refuse to be the dude who doesn’t have clean clothes in his old domicile when the new civilization comes looking for artifacts. Like what if I get remembered for something dope…then the scandal breaks: Panama Jackson aka Mr. Uno Tres not only cured Cancer at the last minute, but we found a pile of dirty unmentionables in his apartment that will be donated to new science. Rumor has it, the words KD were uttered by the people who made this discovery and we’re working now to find out what that means.

2. Make it rain

I have a confession to make. Despite the ATLienness of my soul, I’ve never actually thrown a wad of money at a stripper. Mostly because that seems like the dumbest pasttime ever. But people who do it always seem to be having more fun than everybody else. Seriously, everybody seems happy when it’s raining one dollar bills. Been in a hailstorm? Nobody’s happy then. So I figure that since I probably won’t need much money while running from zombies, Republicans, and Cornel West’s hair (his hair has to be alien) I might as well give it to charity. And since I support the performing arts, what better way to spend my last two nights of unevil and anarchy? Here’s a real question, do strip clubs still exist amidst chaos? I’m open to debate on this one.

3. Meet Mr. Ghetto

I really just want to ask him “why?” Nothing more, nothing less. That’s worth the trip to New Orleans.

4. Sing “Chasing Pavements” at an open mic

Few have been privy to my renditions of Adele’s classic song, but I think it needs a much wider audience. I’m ready too. I’ll see if I can sneak this into a jazz brunch. Interesting, that could be the theme song for the…hm…Days After Rapture? <—- Somebody commission a commission to get this task force going pronto. I’m sure there’s an official Biblical name for what happens between the day Jesus shows up and the day the world ends but we might need something more modern like The Liberation of Kat Stacks or something.

5. Feed some ducks

I like ducks. I also like getting my duck sicked but that’s another talk show. BAZINGA!

So kiddies, assuming that this is the end – and it’s been real, I assure you – what would be on your Rapture Bucket List?

I guess see you…or not…on the other side.

-VSB P aka THE ARSONIST aka MR. MAKE IT RAIN WITH PENNIES aka GIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIRL HE A 3, NOT FOR LONG THOUGH, WE GON’ DAH

If you haven’t purchased the paperback or the $9.99 Kindle version of “Your Degrees Wont Keep You Warm at Night: The Very Smart Brothas Guide to Dating, Mating, andFighting Crime” yet, this could be your very last chance and all. I suggest the Kindle since delivery might take a while.

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