My sister has a 4-year-old son called, Feranmi. From time to time, and more frequently when the house is full of our extended family, Feranmi gets too excited, too playful, and simply starts having too much fun. It is at this point, at the height of his joy, and when he thinks he has the power to do anything – like fly from sofa to sofa simply by shouting “vooooom” – that my sister steps in and stops him. More on the flip side.
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When she does so, she is often met with resistance from us, his biggest fans, because we want to keep playing with our nephew. She then proceeds to explain that when he is having too much fun, and no longer in control of his emotions, it will inevitably lead to him running into a wall, and hurting himself; and when it is time for the now regular trip to A&E, we won’t be the ones going with him. I immediately agree, as I am just not about that life. So Feranmi, bemused by why his mother would stop him at his prime, and when he knows he is at the peak of his powers, is sent off for a nap to calm down; and the rest of us must wait like disciples for his return. When he wakes up from his daily nap he is like a new man, with a refreshment, and a focus that puts us un-rested adults to shame.
Based on last weeks interview with the New York Times, it is clear that Kanye West is having too much fun. His level of fame and success has caused him to lose control of his emotions, and any semblance of focus; and a basic understanding of reality. When a grown man believes it is okay to say this, then it’s time for someone to step in:
“Yeah, respect my trendsetting abilities. Once that happens, everyone wins. The world wins; fresh kids win; creatives win; the company wins. I think what Kanye West is going to mean is something similar to what Steve Jobs means. I am undoubtedly, you know, Steve of Internet, downtown, fashion, culture. Period. By a long jump. I honestly feel that because Steve has passed, you know, it’s like when Biggie passed and Jay-Z was allowed to become Jay-Z.
I’ve been connected to the most culturally important albums of the past four years, the most influential artists of the past ten years. You have like, Steve Jobs, Walt Disney, Henry Ford, Howard Hughes, Nicolas Ghesquière, Anna Wintour, David Stern.
I think that’s a responsibility that I have, to push possibilities, to show people: “This is the level that things could be at.” So when you get something that has the name Kanye West on it, it’s supposed to be pushing the furthest possibilities. I will be the leader of a company that ends up being worth billions of dollars, because I got the answers. I understand culture. I am the nucleus.”
Greatness is the last thing one should self proclaim. This reminds me of a line from his hit All Falls Down, when he said “I’m trying to right my wrongs, but its funny them same wrongs helped me write this song”. I believe he has reached the point where to him, right and wrong are the same concept as long as he is having fun, and to some extent he is still famous. He believes he can go through the rest of his career flying from hit to hit, simply by shouting “everybody look at me”, and we will love him no matter what he does. It is a shame, because this post should instead be a review of yet another brilliant album, and not another bizarre moment of expression: like the time he decided to wear a skirt, or impregnate a Kardashian.
Don’t get me wrong, I love Kanye West. “College Dropout”; “Late Registration”; and “Graduation” are some of my favourite albums of all time; and I have no doubt Yeezus will follow. Kanye West’s lyrics and beats have made me drop it like it’s extra hot on dance floors and packed tubes. And that is why, like with my nephew, I understand that their comes a time in the day when it’s time to calm down, because when Kanye eventually runs into a wall, and it’s time to drive him to A&E (rehab), I won’t be the one taking him. So please, speak to your cousin Kanye, grab him gently by the shoulder, and slowly sooth him into a deep nap, before he does irreparable damage to himself, and he is no longer driven to “complete awesomeness at all times, awesome truth and awesomeness. Beauty, truth, awesomeness”