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Patti Smith: The Paula Deen of Punk?

"If I wanna say 'n****r,' I'll say 'n****r.' It's all part of being American."

by
Kathy Shaidle

Bio

January 10, 2014 - 7:00 am
Page 1 of 4  Next ->   View as Single Page

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My high school dropout mother taught me to read when I was three.

I soon acquired what I presumed would be a lifelong habit/talent: the ability to read with almost complete attention and retention for hours at a stretch.

Then I sidled up to middle age, and noticed to my horror how long it took me to get to the bottom of a book’s first page.

And when I did make it, realizing I didn’t remember what I’d just (supposedly) read.

That was when I wasn’t dozing off or daydreaming after three sentences.

This means I can still recall large sections of a TIME cover story on Woody Allen just after Manhattan came out, but don’t recall a single word of Liberal Fascism.

I’ll confess something else: I still barely know the difference between Shia and Sunni, or the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists.

Sometimes I think Paul Krugman and Thomas Friedman are the same guy.

This year I’m turning fifty.

And I’ve decided I just don’t care.

So what to buy with my Christmas Amazon gift card?

Comments are closed.

All Comments   (29)
All Comments   (29)
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Your reading problem Kathy, may not be your age. It could be the internet. I use to laugh at that stuff too. It fragments the mind, they say. It's made for skimming, not reading. My dad is eighty years old, and reads books all the time. Like always. And does not own a computer. Refuses to get one. My sister reads all the time too. And she is older than you, or me. She does have a computer, but rarely uses it. I use to love reading, but hardly do anymore. I have vowed in the past, to surf the internet less, but have yet to do so. I believe John Hawkins has gone into this a bit. And think he has recommended a book or two about to how to counteract the internet effect. What do you think? How about the rest of you? Is there really an internet effect, that affects ones reading?
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Your reading problem Kathy, may not be your age. It could be the internet. I use to laugh at that stuff too. It fragments the mind, they say. It's made for skimming, not reading. My dad is eighty years old, and reads books all the time. Like always. And does not own a computer. He refuses to get one. He says, he's afraid he'll get into trouble, because he'd be too tempted to post questionable comments. My sister reads books all the time too. And she is older than you, or me. She does have a computer, but rarely uses it. I use to love reading, but hardly do anymore. I have vowed in the past, to surf the internet less, but have yet to do so. I believe John Hawkins has gone into this a bit. And has recommended a book or two about how to counteract the internet effect. What do you think? How about the rest of you? Is there really an internet effect, that affects ones reading?
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Wow, so now PJM has decided not only can you not write FF U ck in a comment, but if Patty Smith says Niiigger, they'll cover that up too.
PJM, read the First Amendment. Niiiiiigger and Fcucck are both words covered by freedom of speech and of the press. What the hell is up with this wave of censorship?
You have my email. Write back and tell me why a 50 year old man cannot handle reading those words. Censors.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
I don't know why the double standard unless it's the usual "artists" double standard.

But just because I feel like it, I"ll tell you that I am the straightest-living devout Christian traditional American person on the planet. And I love to listen to Patti moan and use un-PC words to say very PC things ... because the music grabs me somehow I can't explain. Does it change my philosophy/faith/life? No. I can't explain that, either.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
I may be accused of being off topic, but this is in relation to your page two, Kathy. I am an amateur singer and do a couple of Jerry Lee songs. I was interested in Tosches' selection of Lewis's version of 'Wine Spo Dee O Dee" as being Lewis's best cut.
The first version of 'Wine' I ever heard was by Lightnin' Hopkins. I assumed Lewis must have heard it, but Lewis's version is almost a different song. Here we go:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuRPqThr3uQ
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
An earlier less ambitious Lewis version, complete with reverb:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEwAgUvp36g
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'd burn my Patti Smith records if I was stupid enough to ever buy one. Figures, Shaidle would like her, parading her predictably horrible musical taste every chance she gets. Oh! The point of the story? Is it Tosche, Smith or political correctness in a time machine?
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Heck, for that matter, what about Yoko Ono's 1980s cut, "Woman is the N****r of the World," which she puked out in her own, inimitable way.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
I don't recall hearing many complaints on her rendition of "Rock and Roll N*gger" on the Easter Album. And there was no doubt about what she was singing, either.

I like her music tho, I usually get her CD's used at Half-Price Books.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Gilda Radner used to do a Patti Smith character named Candy Slice.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Sorry, wasn't able to open the rest of the essay until now.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Why don’t the same people who cheered the Paula Deen witch hunt — who called her a crazy old lady and a racist — burn their Patti Smith records, too?"

While not one to ever defend the hypocrisy of the left, even if one burned all their Patti Smith albums, it is very hard to avoid her because her songwriting is all over many rock albums. I don't own any Patti Smith albums, but I own all of Blue Oyster Cult's albums & her songwriting appears on most of their early albums, especially their highest charting album "Agents Of Fortune". She even moans (Patti Smith doesn't sing, she moans) on "The Revenge Of Vera Gemini" on the album. To de-liberalize one's record album collection would mean burning most of one's collection. Blue Oyster Cult, while hardly being a band to turn on leftists the way bozo leftists like Bruce Springscream, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Coldplay, & their all time faves The Velvet Underground do/did, Blue Oyster Cult utilized her songwriting skills to good effect on their early records especially. I am by no means a leftist or a Patti Smith fan, but will not burn all my Blue Oyster Cult records because she is a whacko leftist & wrote songs for them. I'll leave record burning to leftists. There's a lot of Southern rockers out there with albums that will offend their stupid sensibilities. As for Paula Deen, her recipes are still utilized in this household. Let those who are without sin cast the first stone at her. Only a fool would without looking at their own life's failings first.

49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
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