Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Rap It Up

Have you ever noticed that there is an elite group of celebrities that are off limits as far as the media (or anyone else, for that matter) finding fault with anything they do or say.  Yes, there are those that are so revered for their talent when they occasionally say something stupid or rude, we pretend we were struck with total deafness and didn't hear a word of it. OR...if it was heard and repeated there is the thought, "They earned the right to say whatever they want".  (but then...does anyone really earn the right to be rude?)

Spoiler Alert: Yes, I am going to say something negative about Hollywood royalty.  If it helps.... I am somewhat conflicted about calling someone out for
something, when usually this person is a class act. 

Thought Number One: Was It the Right Time or the Right Place?

I was more than a tad ( tad is a limited quantity that is more than a smidgen but less than a bucket-full) when I heard the speech that Meryl Streep gave at the National Board of Review dinner in New York City a couple of weeks ago.

Streep was at the event to honor Emma Thompson for her portrayal of Mary Poppins’ creator, PL Travers in the Disney film, Saving Mr Banks.  The speech started off well enough with some kind remarks about her friend.

 She said of her good chum: ‘Not only is she not irascible, she’s practically a saint. There’s something so consoling about that old trope, but Emma makes you want to kill yourself, because she’s a beautiful artist, she’s a writer, she’s a thinker, she’s a living, acting conscience.’

You have to admit...that is some serious praise she is bestowing....although...I am going out on a limb here that the actual  number of people wanting to kill themselves over Emma's talents might be lower that Meryl implied. (I for one, am pretty secure in my mediocrity.)

Anyway....after a couple more  platitudes were tossed Emma's way, the subject took a U-turn. She then went off on a scathing synopses of what a jerk Walt Disney was.  Her tirade called him a "hideous anti-Semite and gender bigot.  She felt the need to read a letter Walt wrote in 1938 to an aspiring female animator, that pretty much said the woman had no chance to be an animator for the Disney organization,  as she was the wrong gender to work in such a creative endeavor.

She reinforced her point by reading a statement from one of  Disney's associates, animator Ward Kimbal who reported that Walt Disney didn’t really like women, Quoting the  esteemed animator regarding his old boss: ‘He didn’t trust women or cats.’  (BTW..there are a number of articles that came out to both support her claims and others that disputed her claims.  One of the most interesting articles was Fact Checking Meryl Streep's Disney Bashing Speech.)

He didn't trust cats???

My beef about her speech had less to do with her comments about Disney and more about the inappropriate place and timing of her remarks such as:

1.  Why use Emma Thompsons big night as an anti-Disney forum?  The movie in which Emma was being honored for  is a Disney production.  Shouldn't this be more about Emma and less about the production company or the movie's subject. 

2.  While the facts may be correct,...perhaps Disney was the worst example of a woman-hating, bigot, (I haven't a clue to the inner thoughts of the man) but that was 30 years ago and he isn't around to tell his side of the story.

3. Even if we go with the premise that Walt was a misogynist and bigot...even then... does it seem right to use that forum to bash him at an award ceremony honoring an actor that appeared in  a movie produced by Disney company about the man, Walt Disney?

4. AND lastly, if she really has a HUGE issue with the man and his company, I would think Meryl wouldn't be working for him.   I bet she cashes the paychecks coming in  for Into the Woods.  Her latest project is a Walt Disney Production. 

Of course that wasn't the end of her little speech.... NO...she went one step further...by adding....

 ‘there is a piece of received wisdom that says that the most creative people are often odd, or irritating,   eccentric, damaged, difficult. That along with enormous creativity come certain deficits in humanity or decency. We are familiar with this trope in our business: Mozart, Van Gogh, Tarantino, Eminem,’

OK...I have questions...Did she mean "perceived wisdom?"

Why does she keep using the word "trope"?  It it a favorite word of hers?

What makes Mozart, Van Gogh, Tarantino, and Eminem deficient in decency or in humanity?  I am not an expert on any of those men but I think I am safe in saying they were decent enough not to trash Meryl Streep at a dinner in her honor. I am not sure people with problems of any kind can be deemed lacking decency or humanity.   Plus, I find it interesting that she is only picking on men. Does that make her a gender bigot?

So...Thought Number Two:   Crabby Pants and I have decided to do a parody. 

As you might imagine, rap music isn't exactly my #1 choice as far as music genres go...so there are  no expectations here at TAOBC,  that the rap duo of Ceeinpee and Cher-hanna achieving super-stardom.

(Explanation...Given that Marshall Mathers turns into the name Eminem....you can appreciate that Crabby Pants would be Ceeinpee....right?)

Am I safe in assuming, that Chris Brown and Rihanna are offended?

I think you have monsters alive in your head,
Telling you to say stuff that’s better unsaid,
You may think you’re special, but keep it under your breath
It just sounds so crazy, yeah it just sounds so crazy...

I may not be a rapper or rich or secure
But I don’t stand on platforms and make you endure
My opinions and comments that cut to the quick,
Besides being rude, they are making us sick,
We get you’re  a diva, and a great actress too,
But no one’s a fan... like you are of you.
Mozart is spinning in his grave at the news
That he’s odd and deficient, at least in your view
I guess Tarantino will have to do a movie that’s dark
And full of expletives to prove your remark
That he’s  tormented and anguished and humanity’s blight,
Eminem admits that he’s crazy so, you won’t get a fight.
Maybe Van Gogh didn’t hear, there's a chance that might be,
But really, can't you...Do unto others as you want done to thee. 

Repeat Chorus

I think you have monsters alive in your head,
Telling you to say stuff that’s better unsaid,
You may think you’re special, but keep it under your breath
It just sounds so crazy, yeah it just sounds so crazy...

Just for the sake of giving you the appropriate tune...I picked out one of the other parodies of this song.

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lisleman said...

I'm impressed. Of course you know I love parodies. Thanks for including a parody of the rap song because I needed to hear the rap song. Now I can say I've listened to "Monster". It does have a catchy "hook" chorus. The crazy/insane idea reminds me of Billy Joel's song "You May Be Right". (ok I like these older songs more than rap)
It just may be a lunatic Meryl is looking for. Meryl probably just needs to lighten up.
Oh BTW what is this National Board of Review dinner? Rich people getting free food?

Cheryl P. said...

I can't imagine anyone needs to listen to rap (haha) but if one is forced to...at least this one has the catchy hook. I absolutely like the older stuff as well. It just seemed fitting to use Eminem's song with him being reduced to being deficit of humanity and all.

I hadn't thought of the similarity to Billy Joel's song. I love that song!!! I think I still have the "Glass Houses" vinyl album around here somewhere.

"You may may be right, I may be crazy"
But it just may be a lunatic you're looking for.
Turn out the light, don't try to save me.
You may be wrong, for all I know
but you may be right."

As far as the National Board of Review: They are, according to their web site, a non-profit group that supports art and entertainment through film. Yep...an excuse to for rich people to meet and eat free food.

babs (beetle) said...

I'm interested to know what response she received. I can't find any excuse for a person attacking somebody that isn't around to defend themselves and even less excuse for using someone else's night to do it. It doesn't come from a very gracious personality, I feel. Loved the parody :)

Cheryl P. said...

You and I so often view things in the same light, Babs. That was my point as well. When she is supposedly there to celebrate someone else's success, why turn it into a forum on her "issues"?

A number of articles said the audience was smiling and laughing. On one interview I heard, they said that perhaps the crowd thought she was kidding (for whatever reason) and that it was some type of spoof. I don't think that anyone really knew what the heck she was doing?

Debra She Who Seeks said...

This is what happens when celebrities unwisely write their own speeches and don't have their publicists edit them.

Cheryl P. said...

I think that is a great point. Someone on the payroll should of weighed in on what not to say and how not to say it. What is interesting about this though, it that she isn't taking much backlash from it. I think she is well liked and enough of a star that everyone is turning a blind eye to it. Had some random young actress without Meryl's star power said something along those lines about Tarintino or Eminem, there would be a host of articles asking "was she drunk or high?"

Chubby Chatterbox said...

Meryl Streep is probably the best actress alive but that doesn't alter the fact that she has a big mouth. This instance show just how dependent these folks are on writers to put the right words in their mouths. So Walt didn't hire women at his studio in 1938? How unusual. The other studios only hired women when necessary, a sad fact of the times. Attitudes have changed since then and it's hardly fair to criticize someone for being in touch with their time. From what I understand, animation is still a male-driven occupation.

lisleman said...

I find many older songs relating to blogging. This one does too.

Lady Jewels Diva said...

I remember a few years back the Golden Globes, Emmys, Oscars etc told all the winners to stop bringing their political bullshit into their speeches. They've clearly chosen to do it in other places. Seriously, she comes off as a bitch and they all use the wrong place to spout their garbage. God help her if the Disney corp decides to sack her. But then I guess she won't care.

Love your pics as usual!

Liggybee said...

I dunno...I think celebrities are always saying a lot of things sometimes just to stir up controversy. Or just to make people talk...or to get people to think about things. And yes, sometimes they do say the worst things. But who knows if they really mean it or if they somehow forget when they are in reality and not in a movie? Just saying.

BTW, love those pics! I think the leather jacket-clad one actually looks like Kris Jenner (even though that outfit is hardly her style - LOL!) Rock on, Cheryl! :)

Cheryl P. said...

Thanks to the Award Show Powers-that-be, that they have tried to reign some of that in. I quit watching award shows for the most part as I couldn't stand all the political agendas.

No other industry does that. I have worked for a number of corporations and not once was anyone given an award at a corporate function and spent the time telling the audience some political point of view. The winner was too busy bragging about why they deserved to win and the rest of us poor slobs were a bunch of losers.

I think the interview that I saw that said, Disney has too much riding on the new movie to mess with upsetting anyone. Streep plays the Wicked Witch and supposedly she is awesome in the part.

Thanks..I have the most fun with the pictures!

Cheryl P. said...

I think you are right in some instances especially on awards shows. Although sometimes, I think perhaps alcohol and drugs play a role as well. I am thinking on this one Streep was making a point about sexism to a group that she thought has a voice in how films are produced. (the group issues grants for movies to be made)

OH..God...please say it isn't so!!!! I was shooting for that to look like Rihanna. I try never EVAH, EVAH to come within spitting distance of a Kar-trashian or even an ex-Kar-trashian.

Riot Kitty said...

I love your poetry! ;) I agree with you, what a shitty and inappropriate time to spout off. And she's clearly bitching all the way to the bank.

Interesting side note: my stepmom's dad worked in Disney's office while he was in college. Sadly, when he took out the trash it was always full of bottles of booze. Apparently Disney never talked to him though.

Cassandra Russell said...

I have heard, or rather read those things about Walt Disney before, but sheesh! Time and place, you're so right about that.

This is my first visit to your blog, I will be back! :-)

Cheryl P. said...

I think it is somewhat hypocritical of her to be so invested in spouting off about Disney being anti-woman when she gets a huge paycheck from them.

That's really interesting about the booze bottles. Too bad her dad didn't pick out early sketches of some of the characters. He'd be getting rich from collectors. That really would prove that "one person's trash is another person's treasure."

Cheryl P. said...

Hi Cassandra!!! So nice to see a new face here...welcome.

Yeah, I had heard some of that as well. I am a huge fan of his animation, so I always have taken the good with the bad. He probably had his flaws as humans tend to do but then he created such imaginative, wonderful animation as well. I find it super hypocritical of Streep to bring up a letter from 1938 to hash over at an event celebrating an actresses part in a Disney production.

Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

L.C. Griffith said...

Oh Cheryl, I enjoyed reading every bit of this. You're so even tempered and wise...and sarcastic and funny...:) You hit every nail evenly on the head my dear. Well done.
Is that a tat on your leg?

Cheryl P. said...

Leah, you are always so kind. I put some removable tattoos on Crabby Pants because I might be dressing her up in some other way next time. One never knows about what topic might enter my brain. Thank goodness, cartoon characters can be so easily changed. If only it were that easy to add and erase things onto and off of real people.

Pickleope said...

This was great. You're completely right. Maybe it was because it wasn't said on television so we weren't treated to an endless loop of cable and radio pundits beating it to death.
If I was Emma, (we're on a first name basis) I would politely ask her not to "honor" me again.
Context is huge. The fact that she decided to give tribute by crapping on a human popsicle while also throwing shrapnel at a painter, composer, director and rapper, none of whom she has probably met, is just bizarre. I wonder if it has to do with her hanging out with 50 Cent.

Katherine Murray said...

You know who I think is beyond any bad press? Well not completely, but in a way, Taylor Swift. I tell you what... she is talented but she is so full of herself. Did you see her at the grammy's after the "throwing head back piano song?" Yes, it was amazing (other than the head tosses)... but when everyone was applauding she didn't smile, didn't say thank you... she just smirked at the audience as if saying, "Yea, you BETTER applaud. I am ALL that!"

Beverly Steeves said...

well that cheered me. i must admit to being a huge marshal fan. i know, what business does a 50 year old woman have rapping and swearing while driving her kia. this was just a brilliant post!!

Robyn Engel said...

I couldn't agree more about all of it, Cheryl. My goodness, I had no idea Meryl Streep said those stupid, callous, out-of-place things. Another point about her comment regarding people "killing themselves" - so many of us deal with the loss of loved ones to suicide, and Hollywood is certainly not exempt from this trauma. She's completely insensitive. Thank you for bringing this to our attention.

The lyrics and video song are really silly, and a great ending to this post.

Be well.

Cheryl P. said...

Meryl (yes, we are also on a first name basis) was lucky that the NBOR isn't exactly a hot ticket event, so she was a bit under the radar but i suspect if she said this in a more prominent venue, she would of still gotten a pass because of those 18 academy award nominations she has had.

Haha, I love how you phrased that. Crap on human popsicle, yep...that sums it up nicely. I had to Google Mozart as I didn't even know why he made the cut for being thrown under Meryl's bus. I hate it when someone feels justified to publicly trash people others especially when one of those people's companies is paying her more than $12 Million to play a witch.

Surely 50 Cent wouldn't want to hang out with her. She might label him as odd, eccentric, damaged or difficult.

Cheryl P. said...

I noticed that too, Katherine. She seems to have developed a real attitude as of late on everything she appears on. She strikes me as being really immature. I have listened to a couple of her interviews and I am amazed by how self-absorbed she is.

I am losing my patience with a lot of the elitist attitude out of Hollywood. Does being a celebrity give anyone the right to toss out being a decent human being?

Cheryl P. said...

I love that you are a fan. I am older than you and I am all for driving down the road singing and swearing. Although to be accurate..in my case, the swearing is usually aimed at the idiot drivers that just pissed me off.

I think any artist would especially appreciate fans that might not be stereotypical. I don't typically listen to rap but I do like the Monster song. I think the imagery of "monsters under the bed" is pretty inspired. Actually, even though I'm not into rap, I think Eminem's story is a really interesting one and his talent for lyrics is amazing.

Cheryl P. said...

All and all, most of her speech ticked me off. Yes...I too, took offense at the "killing themselves" comment. You and I have talked about this before but I don't like people taking the subject of suicide lightly.

Of course, once I got riled, I Googled at least a dozen articles to get other people's takes on this and some tried to spin it as a big joke. I wasn't laughing. But others looked at it as I did and found her remarks hypocritical and horribly insensitive.

L.C. Griffith said...

Cheryl, my dog is a bit "odd, irritating, eccentric, damaged, and difficult" hmmm, I see the resemblance;)

Cheryl P. said...

Seriously, your dog is WWWAAAAYYYY cuter. How adorable is he/she? There is a similarity in the hair color though.

L.C. Griffith said...

She is cute isn't she. LOL!

oldereyes said...

So, this morning, the comments are back on my browser (Firefox).

Meryl Streep is absolutely my favorite actress. No one comes close. But I have absolutely no desire to hear what she says off the screen, which is why I don't watch award or entertainment shows. There's probably a study out there about what celebrity does to the brain ... or certainly to the ego. So, nothing a celebrity says or does ever surprises me. I enjoyed your parody of Eminem's Monster ... it would be outside my range because I couldn't listen long enough to parody it. Eminem and most stuff like it is off my musical charts. That makes me sound really old but I am. Great post ... you are on a roll, Cheryl.

Lady Jewels Diva said...

bahahahaha LOVE.IT!

AletaObrien said...

I like Meryl Streep, can't remember the name of the last movie "August" something, that she was just in - did a fantastic job. But... ughhh, nasty of her to go off on Walt. As you said, it's long ago in the past and he isn't here to justify or deny or defend himself. That was a low blow.

Cheryl P. said...

H Aleta, I agree that she is a wonderful actress and she becomes the parts she plays. I just found it interesting how she handled herself at an awards dinner. I thought it was in bad form especially given the fact she has a major holiday movie coming out that is a Disney product. Low blow for sure.

Jayne said...

I didn't read all of her statement, but I heard about it and thought it was wildly bizarre behavior. I don't get it at all. Love your take on it, though, and especially the "crabby pants" rap.

Cheryl P. said...

Thanks, Jayne. I didn't get the need to bring up Disney's inappropriate behaviors and shortcomings that transpired in 1938. The man is long gone and given the fact his legacy is a company that employs both Emma Thompson and Meryl Streep seems to make the venue (i.e. an awards dinner linked to a Disney film) a poor choice for her speech. Since then, evidently, a great-niece of Disney agreed that he had some of these biases and bigotries but again...what is the point to dwell on it now. Times (hopefully) have progressed, at least in some areas.

I thought it was more than a little pompous on Streep's part to pull Tarantino and Eminem into her little tirade.

chickens Consigliere said...

OhMyGod,What the hell is a trope? How bizarre. I wonder if Emma was in on it somehow? I would be bummed if one of my friends did that to me. Your rap is excellent, though. Any chance of a video?

Cheryl P. said...

I had no idea what the word "trope" meant so I looked it up, Chicken. Sadly, I still don't understand Meryl's use of the word. The definition is :

"a figurative or metaphorical use of a word or expression. While Meryl seems particularly fond of the word, I am figuratively screwed up and metaphorically, I seem to be dumber than dirt.

I suspect Emma was confused as well, because when asked about it, she kind of changed the subject and said what a good friend Meryl was. Being so vague lends itself to her trying to deflect the question.

Thanks..as for a video...I suspect any video that Crabby Pants and I would conjure up would be very, very unwatchable.

Agent 54 said...

A Star is born. Your Rap was the bomb. (do not take this blog to an airport)

Though they think they're special, I think most people that are put on a pedestal by other people are just ordinary people who got lucky. Ordinary people are dumb. Dumb people say dumb stuff.

Except for myself. I really am special but, you already knew that.

Margaret said...

I think "trope" is the buzz word of the year because EVERYBODY IS SAYING IT right now.

Cheryl P. said...

hahaha...I suspect that rap would be my path to stardom. In fact, I think my path to stardom might be buried under an avalanche or something.

I agree that celelbrities are still ordinary people that are prone to ordinary mistakes. My problem is that they put themselves above the rules of everyday people and the public finds excuses for them.

Yes..Agent 54...I do know you are special.

Cheryl P. said...

I hadn't heard anyone use it until that speech and now I have heard it a couple of other times on TV talk shows.

A few years ago, the word "tony" popped up and it was in just about every article in People magazine week after week. Turns out that your state has numerous neighborhoods that are "tony".

meleahrebeccah said...

"I am going out on a limb here that the actual number of people wanting to kill themselves over Emma's talents might be lower that Meryl implied" --- you totally crack me up.

"Why use Emma Thompsons big night as an anti-Disney forum?" --- I agree. That was totally the wrong place and the wrong time to make her point. Regardless whether or not her point is even valid.

Cheryl P. said...

I agree with the wrong place, wrong time. There may be merit in her facts, who knows??? But men of Disney's era viewed things quite differently than today. Doesn't make it right but an awards dinner isn't the venue to rehash old behaviors that are scorned today.

heidi said...

In my opinion actors and actresses crave drama in any way shape or form. Meryl just wanted drama added to the night. She should have made the comments at another time.

abeerfortheshower said...

Yeah, Meryl Streep has a pretty big reach. If she wanted to draw attention to this subject, she could have used pretty much any other outlet. Using someone else's dinner was just tasteless.

"Plus, I find it interesting that she is only picking on men. Does that make her a gender bigot?"
Good zing. That made me laugh out loud.
Also, trust me, I'm no rap fan, and I don't like Eminem's music, but is she really taking what he raps about to heart? The guy's a huge troll and used to get his jollies by trying to say the most screwed up things he could in the span of one song. I don't really think that qualifies him as a misogynistic woman hater or a "human deficient."

Cheryl P. said...

Hi Heidi, You are right...they crave the attention, don't they? I thought she was grandstanding the minute I heard her go off on her little tangent. It was less about Emma's award and more about "her". Her choice of venue for spewing her anti-Disney sentiments were in poor taste.

I still find it interesting that everyone pretty much ignored her bad form because of who she is and her enormous talent.

Cheryl P. said...

Tasteless is such a good word for this, I think. The whole incident just confirms my opinion that celebrities can do or say whatever the heck they please, and still their minions will nod in affirmation. The escalation of egos among the "important people" is weighing on my nerves.

No, I am not a fan of rap. Most of it seems overtly mean spirited , if not down right violent...but I have a larger dislike for pompous people that deem they are better than the next guy. I can't imagine ever calling someone else out for being a "human deficient".

I think I am crossing the border into bitchdom as of late. Maybe I should turn around, huh?