Sunday, April 1, 2012

In Defense of Justin Bieber: An Open Letter to Non-Beliebers Everywhere

Chivalry aint's just knowing when to flip off the
motherfuckers trynna take pictures of your girlfriend
For anyone who knows me, or was facebook friends with me when his Otis rap hit the net, or made the unfortunate decision to ever follow me on twitter, it should come as no surprise: I think Justin Bieber is the shit. With the recent media blitz that accompanied his latest release, this became painstakingly apparent to anyone within a 200 follower radius of @beateasy. I've been on a twitter frenzy, posting every teaser, preview and hacked JB tweet I could find, eventually leading me to his personal twitter account (seriously, check out JB's unfiltered thoughts...they're the best) but also leading one of my best friends to inevitably ask me the question:

"Why do you love Justin Bieber so much?"

Just for context, let's call this the equivalent of someone asking Mitt Romney why he loves Obama-bashing so much...or asking Snooki why she loves "Gym-Tanning-Laundry" so much. The simple answer would be that it's a lifestyle. I'll be the first to admit that 'Boyfriend' wasn't even the best music to come out on March 26, but being a Belieber is about more than that. Making that fateful typo is about refusing to let society brush off my full-blown affection for stuff like the Biebs, Carly Rae and Gaga as mere "guilty pleasures" and allows me to look past the BS to appreciate it all for the brilliantly constructed art that it really is. The fact of the matter is that these are going to be the classics in 10 years, so you can either tell your kids you were listening to it before it was cool, or tell them that you were commenting on YouTube calling a 17 year-old kid a faggot. Your choice.
"I would know he's gay because I
get with so many hot babes"

Now, my buddy left the room before I could fully answer his question, but it got me thinking; why do I love Justin Bieber so much? I'm obviously pretty fired up about the subject, and maybe it might just be that as an aspiring popular musician myself, I really like the story of a Canadian boy's rapid ascent to fame catalyzed by the guy who was the soundtrack to my middle school dances. When I actually reflected upon my reasoning though, I found myself with too many reasons to just to toss into the ambivalence of twitter. So without further ado, I present to the World the 5 biggest reasons why I am a Belieber. 

so say hello to falsetto in 3...2...

1. Talent

This kid has it. I don't care what anyone says about the sparse amounts of auto-tune that are occaisionally peppered over his voice, or that he sounded like he was castrated before he hit puberty - that shit's irrelevant to me. He plays multiple instruments, writes his own songs, has a voice sweeter than an angel singing in the key of 'honey' and has even started producing his own tracks. Name me any other current pop-superstar that can do all this and then tell me Justin Bieber isn't in their league.

If you don't believe me, I will let the talent speak for itself (with a more than ringing endorsement from Carlos Santana):

he goes a little cornball at the beginning, but keeps it classy by throwing in a nice "Que sera sera" reference in there, which brings me to my next point:

2. Self awareness

Justin Bieber has never tried to be anything he isn't. What's that you say? He tried to be a rapper? Yes, he did and I can honestly say that he has single-handedly come out with more good raps by the age of 18 than Vanilla Ice, Soulja Boy and RiFF RaFF combined, let alone anything that anyone who is reading this has ever come up with. Sure, his "Buzz Lightyear" line in Boyfriend may not have been the best way to introduce himself to the rap game, but I would like to take this opportunity to mention the fact that Lil' Wayne has compared himself to a toilet so many times that I'm beginning to think being 'the shit' isn't all it's cracked up to be. Plus, it's hard to pretend you're not jealous that he's fuckin' Selena Gomez when he first laid down the lines; "I get it done abundantly // she wanna get up under me".

Also, he's been quoted as saying that he's going after "the beats that are in the clubs" and that was before he was even legally allowed into one. If that isn't relevance coming out the wazoo, then I dare you not to put this song on next time you're getting drunk:

He's even been working on a track for his latest album with Diplo aka the guy you didn't even know makes all your favourite songs aka that guy in the blackberry commercial aka the guy who single-handedly made Usher relevant again
which leads me to my next point...

3. Cultural Relevance

@justinbieber has 19 million twitter followers. 19 million. Only Lady Gaga has more than that (but that's a topic for another day). In the twitter world, Justin's word is gospel. He wants something to be the most popular topic in the world? One tap of his phone and it's done. You can literally see how soon his next single is coming out just by checking in the Worldwide trending topics. Hell, even when his phone got hacked, #biebermyballs (as well as 'Twitter HELP JUSTIN') were both trending within minutes. Lady Gaga's 'little monsters' and Selena Gomez's 'Selenators' have been known to do this, but to nowhere NEAR the crazed extent of Beliebers. This kid has a monopoly on the horny female pre-teen demographic, and anybody who doesn't realize the advantages that comes with that is either ridiculously jealous or just doesn't understand one of the most basic principles of economics: Sex sells.

which brings me to my next point...

Justin Bieber is like real
boobs: would you really
rather the alternative?
4. He's Gorgeous

I would identify myself as a straight male, but if you can't admit that this kid is one of the best looking male pop stars to grace the lame-stream since that kid from nsync, you're either a horrible judge of looks, or grossly trying to overcompensate your heterosexuality. I would much rather see this guy plastered over Wal-Mart than the eyesores that are the Jonas brothers or any of the Backstreet-Grandpas. It's not a huge stretch of the imagination to think that a lot of his haters are either subconsciously jealous, or freaked out by the fact that they #totally wanna bang him. Take a minute to reflect...could these possibly be #the feelings that you're feeling?

It's easy to sell sex to guys and thus is sold very frequently to men in the form of everything ever, always. This is not so true for the ladies. Ever since the Twilight saga ended (thank God) and the JoBros got chastity rings (seriously, wtf is even the point of being a rockstar?) the supply for female sexy-time fantasies has been seriously lacking, while demand has remained as consistent as ever. With Ryan Gosling and Justin Timberlake firmly entrenched in film, and a large portion of music becoming misogynistic as fuck, the ladies of today are just lookin for a nice guy that wants to sit by the fire eating fondue with them....oh wait...

and finally...

5. He's only eight-fucking-teen.

How old are you? How much have you accomplished in your life? How much of that had you accomplished by your eighteenth birthday? If you answered any of these questions with a moment of silence followed by a single tear, you are not alone. Personally, I spent the bulk of the 18th year of my life sitting in a residence hall, getting high, pretending I was gonna be the lead singer of a famous rock band one day (which has since been replaced by the much more realistic goal of becoming a world famous DJ)

What did you want when you were 16? To have every 16 year old member of the opposite sex in the world swooning over you? Thought so. This guy has had multiple chart-topping albums, has written a memoir AND starred in his own biopic even before he was allowed to (be) bang(ed by..?) all the beliebing cougars on the loose. I don't know about the rest of you, but all that stuff (in addition to meeting Justin Bieber) pretty much is my bucket list. Who knows, maybe it really is time for me to quit smoking weed...

In Conclusion:

Justin Bieber: The whole world's punching bag
and he's still cooler than you
I don't really expect you to run out go buy his album, or even react beyond neutrally to his music. What I'm really trying to get at is that much like Rhianna or Kanye West, this kid isn't going anywhere, and hating on him is only going to be a bigger waste of your time and energy than putting off your homework to write an article defending a multi-millionaire celebrity. If you're hating him just to fit in? Go right ahead, but just know that in 5 years you'll be flip-flopping on that position harder than Mitt Romney pretending he didn't invent American health care (or Snooki pretending she ever wanted to have a kid if you preferred that metaphor).

Selena Gomez? Unfortunately probably headed the route of Britney. At best she's gonna 'Hillary Duff' it. The Jonas Brothers? Already Jesse-McCartney-ed the shark (seriously, does anyone even remember that guy?). JB is the new JT so get with the program, stop pretending you're not jealous and start realizing he's quickly turning into one of the coolest white guys on the planet.

Don't believe me? Check out this remix with his vocals laid over something a little more legit and believe me that this shit went OFF when we dropped it at the club on Friday night...

Still not convinced? Fine. Here are some clips of the Biebs getting physically abused. Happy? You suck.

I'm actually somewhat impressed with the aim on this one ^

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Swag vs. Mojo

Forgive me for not blogging in a while. The whole 'blog makeover' thing didn't pan out as well as I had hoped, thanks to the rising notoriety of Bærs as well as having a life (something I didn't do too much in the summer). What I emerged from my surprisingly forgettable hiatus to discuss with the internets (aka myself) is a philosophical concept. A construct dating back to our forefathers, our ancestors - a concept older than time itself. A school of thought so entrenched in Eastern Philosophy, that the Western world has even already found a way to package it, and sell it back to us in the form of cheaply made trinkets that we're just gonna owe back to China some day anyway.

This is the concept of Swag vs Mojo.

At first you may look upon these two arbitrary indicators of "coolness" as one in the same. Isn't mojo just the word for swag in British? (this is actually a common misconception - swag in British is actually "class" me, I know a guy)

I'll get into it in a lot more depth once I finish my masters in hippie philosophy and write my thesis on the topic, but the fact of the matter is that neither swag nor mojo can exist without the other. They are codependant entities that can exist in isolated situations, but can never be referred to without conjuring up the other for context. A kind of philosophical Peanut Butter & Jelly, if you will.
Either the most zen way to
carry your notes to class,
or the most awkwardly appropriate
porn storage device on the market

So what does this mean?

It means that everyone has within them their own version of swag vs. mojo. It could be your yin vs. yang, your form vs. function, your style vs. substance...hell, it could even be the voice inside of your head vs. the body that lives around it that tells it not to kill everyone all the time - I don't really care. I intentionally made the system overly vague so that it could apply to a multitude of situations. Even my own father has gone so far as to abstractly adopt this belief system into his poker strategy, and anyone that knows my dad knows that he does not fuck around with his poker strategy.

Here's what it comes down to:

Swag is a condition of the body. It has to do solely with appearance and outward demeanour. Until recently, not much was known about this condition, but in this 'prescription age' we're living in, doctors have started the mass-diagnoses. Check out the preview for the documentary below:

Sean Combs: No Swag
What is important to note is that Swag Syndrome is an external condition that does not affect the mind, so much as exhibit uncontrollable audible as well as physical outbursts which can temporarily and permanently disable the patient. This is important remember as we move on to mojo.

As arbitrary as swag can be, it is recognizably quantifiable (for example, "Swagger on a hundred/thousand etc." can be used to denote a variety of levels of Swag). Mojo is not this way at all. Mojo's like the opposite, dude. You can't count mojo, nor can you pin mojo down - that's the beauty of it. Mojo is something that every person has that no one can take away from them. Described as, "a certain 'I don't know what'" by the only scientist to have ever successfully stolen a man's "mojo" (Phd in Evil Science 'Dr. Evil') this condition is more concerned with the intrinsic qualities within one's personality rather than the outward effects they exhibit within society. Watch exclusive footage of the world renowned Evil's keynote speech below:

If you look like this,
you're probably
trying too hard.
So why the hell does any of this matter?

With great swagger comes great responsibility. Any human being living with this condition known as 'Swagmojosis' (aka everyone in the world) should learn that neither swag nor mojo should be employed without the balancing force of its counterpart. A lotta swag and no mojo is like a lot of bark and no bite...a lot of talk with no walk...a lot of preach with no practice - everyone's going to be able to tell that you're trying too hard.

Consequently, if you have mojo, you are doing a disservice to the world by not sharing it with everybody. Mojo is depth, and if the deep don't turn the swag jets on every once in a while, the rest of us are forced to wade around in the metaphorical piss of the shallow end that's filled with people that think it's a good idea to look like the cast of Jersey Shore.

So don't preach if you haven't practiced, and if you're practiced hard and taken your notes, go ahead and do some preaching. 100$ says there's someone out there who wants to read your twitter feed. As we enter Movember, there are men all over the world who are grappling with rapid and unexpected changes in swag and mojo that inevitably accompany facial hair. I like to serve as a Public Service Announcement to let you know that you are not alone. We're all facing this shit-storm of swag and mojo every day, so I say it's time to man up and stop giving a shit about how a couple hairs on top of your lip make you look. If you ain't got no mojo, yo mo ain't got no swag yo..y'know?


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Shuck Fark Week

Always use protection when
playing Shark Week drinking games
Don't get me wrong - Sharks are badass. They swim around in waters too deep for you to navigate, just so that they can scurry over at the slightest hint of a pinprick of blood and devour you with their many rows of teeth in a dramatic fashion. They're natural born killers with a thirst for blood that will always be scary, no matter how cute Pixar makes them look, or how fake Dreamworks makes 'em look. However this does not necessarily mean they deserve their own week on the Discovery Channel. 

Now I love the Discovery Channel as much as the next guy, and I understand their need to attract an audience that isn't trying to fall asleep or my dad, but I'll just let internet sensation Jenna Marbles cover my opinions on Shark Week:

So there you have it. A common sense approach to what Shark Week actually is. Does this mean I think Shark Week should be eradicated? Helllllz nahh. I mean, I don't even watch the damn thing* and I still think it's fun. I just think that the whole event needs to get with the times...evolve, if you will. Such begins the second half of my "constructive criticism":
*saw about 5 minutes last night

Kevin Corrigan - quite
possibly a bear himself
Think about it - They're scary, hairy and even kill regular people who aren't rich enough to go on vacations to exotic locations. The idea's been growing in my mind ever since earlier this week, when I read an article by College Humor's Kevin Corrigan listing 10 Reasons Why Bear Week Would Be Better Than Shark Week. He's got some pretty compelling arguments, and face it - bears are just as badass as sharks.

...or better yet, why not do a week of each? Cap it off with a third week of world class biologists speculating over which of the two was stronger, while you have computer simulations of the two facing off in various depths of the sea. Just saying - instead of one Shark Week in the middle of the summer, August could be an entire Monster Month!!! Dream big people...if anyone can make it happen, it'd be the Discovery Channel.

Which is why I think everyone who has read this far into my insignificant ramblings (and is thus at least somewhat emotionally invested in this topic) should sign Kevin Corrigan's official petition to get Discovery Channel to institue a "Bear Week". He's already almost all the way to his goal of 7,500 signatures - help him get all the way there before he sends the petition along with his article over to Discovery Channel on August 6th. Click here to view the petition.

You might just end up seeing some sh*t like this:

Thursday, July 28, 2011


With so much fcuked up neat stuff going in the World, I thought it'd be kind of cool for me to move away from my usual rants about random bands that you'll never listen to more than once, and do my own version of the evening news. Here are the headlines...MTLivin style:

So if you haven't heard, the U.S.A. owes China a whoooole bunch of money and, to put it simply, the U.S. Government must negotiate a way to deal with it by August 2 (by either raising taxes, cutting spending, or both), or else their credit will 'default' and none of their payments will be processed (i.e. Social Security & whatnot). Experts have speculated that this will turn the entire country will turn into a zombie-infested post-apocalyptic wasteland*.

*may or may not actually happen

This all sounds manageable so far though - Barack's at the helm...he'll crunch the numbers, make some unpopular decisions, and end up saving the country yet again, right? Wrong. Standing in his way are a few very stubborn, very well-funded Republicans who have a knack for speaking in sound-bytes to the small SuperSized portion of the American population that listens to public figures such as Bill O'Reilly and Glenn Beck.

The guy screwing
everyone over would be
named Boehner...
Leading this charge is House Speaker John Boehner, who is not budging from the stance that he will NOT allow Barack Obama's socialist regime to raise taxes at any cost (especially if that cost is to large corporations) despite all evidence stating that you need to make as much money as you are spending.

Verdict: I just get angry every time I hear about what some of these guys are trying to pull, so I've tried to stop paying attention to this one. Most of the Americans I've encountered on the internet are of the same mind, so here's to hoping they contact their local Congressmen and do something about it. Me? I'm just gonna kick it here in Canada and watch the Government take ridiculous chunks out of my paycheck.

Speaking of my tax dollars...

As if having a mustache wasn't enough, he walks wit a limp... #swag
NDP leader not at liberty to disclose full details of mission

A few days ago, a rather spindly lookin' Jack Layton held a surprise press conference to announce that he was taking an Indiana Jones-esque leave from leading Canada's New Democratic Party to once again take on Cancer. The leader of the official opposition never departed from his tone of optimism, vowing to be back, stronger than ever in September to "fight for families" and "replace the Conservative Government in a few short years".

When we last left Layton, he had recently defeated prostate cancer before leading his party to a historical finish in the most recent Canadian election. No word on the official villain for the sequel, although some experts are speculating it could be a mutation of the original foe. Whoever it is, we'll be here waiting eagerly on the egde of our seats to see them defeated. (Maybe even complete the trilogy with Stephen Harper as the villain?)

Either way, I wish you have a speedy recovery Mr. Layton. You have my mustache's unwavering support. UPDATE: On Mr. Layton's recommendation, the NDP has chosen a rookie MP to be his interim replacement.

In Other Depressing News:
Right Wing Terrorist kills a bunch of kids; Former pop-star is driven to an early demise by crack-cocaine; Toronto city councillor has no idea who Margaret Atwood is and finally, There's a really big famine going on in Africa killing a lot of people

Ugh, fuck I can't do this anymore...

In Non-Depressing News...
California still appealing to pot-heads

A new bill is being proposed in California to "Regulate Marijuana like Wine". Proponents of the anti-prohibition movement are seeking to "repeal bad laws" and allow adults who were 21 years of age or older to grow, cultivate and sell marijuana in a taxed market similar to wine. All I can say here is that this plan is rooted in so much common sense that it would take the likes of John Boehner to screw this one up.

So there you have it - the only good news that isn't ridiculous fluff pieces is about legalizing it...Typical left-wing, student writer bullshit, right? Peace out world, I'm going to take my anti-depressants.

Monday, July 25, 2011

I got a lotta cool stuff, and not much of an attention span, so here goes my linkstorm:

The Quick Pick:

Lights ft. Holy Fuck & Shad - Everybody Breaks A Glass

The Slick Pick:

OverDoz. - Pasadena

(Love the 90's style music videos for these guys. oh, and they're #dested too)

The Wack Pick:

ELEW - Sweet Home Alabama

Saw this guy opening for Josh Groban last week (but that's another story entirely). I love the "vambrices", the power stance, and the way he's way too intense. Like, all the time.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

...And We're Back!

"At least it was the last day" - Some engineer right before he got fired

What a weekend! After seeing some phenomenal bands at Bluesfest over Saturday (more on that later...) I was headed to the final night (Sunday) with some friends when a big, black storm cloud started gaining rather quickly on the festival. With mixed feelings about the event, the ensuing conversation went something like this:

Jeremy: "Man, I saw this storm coming on the Weather Network... It's bad news, I'm not down. We should turn back, I'm not feeling this at all."

Everyone else: "But we already bought our tickets..."

So, after much deliberation, debate and decision making, we did what any rational students would do and we went. There were a couple cool headliners that night anyway. However, apparently Mother Nature had other plans, because as soon as we walked into the festival, this happened. Needless to say, we GTFO of there back to my place, where upon arrival we encountered a tree cracked in half in the backyard and a candlelit game of Monopoly in the dining room.

Cut to this afternoon (those who are still with me..).

Hydro Ottawa has finally come to cut up the excess tree and get our power working again. It feels good to have internet that can work fast enough for me to make use of it. So here are all my stories from Saturday night....

Saw Death From Above 1979 on their reunion tour. For anyone who's a fan of the duo, it was everything you'd expect it to be: wicked. For anyone unfamiliar with the act, it was two dudes clad in contrasting black and white (one of which is one half of MSTRKRFT) playing dance rock music...couldn't really go wrong here. Nice colour scheme (B&W) stage picture (for just two guys) and band dynamics (when the more obnoxiously, outspoken singer started aimlessly ranting, the bearded bassist pronounced cooly: "Apparently this has turned into a Mitch Hedberg routine"). Full points.

Next for the night was Vancouver's own Mother Mother. A bit more obscure of an act, the band immediately demanded attention. Lead by what seemed to be a European, coked-up version of Neil Patrick-Harris flanked by a blond and brunette on either side of him (with matching synths to boot) this band rocked it. They swayed in and out of a number of medleys comprised of a bunch of their hits, never missing a beat.

While the bass player and drummer held it down flawlessly, and the two lovely ladies were to die for (especially the brunette...), the real star of the show was the singer. His jerky precision combined with his knack for timing and poetic eloquence left the entire crowd in awe of his physically enthralling performance. Check these guys out if they're headed your way.

Anyway thanks for stickin round. I'm off for now. Here's some cool new(ish) music. Cheers