Category Archives: special request

Beysplaining to a Music Critic

I recently read this terribly lazy preview of Beyonce’s Formation tour (which is coming to Pittsburgh in four days and OH MY GOD I AM SO EXCITED) and was inspired to write a letter to the editor. Because, in addition to writing pages-long theses about “Lemonade” in a blog, I am now also compelled to call out music critics who are bitter that their bosses make them cover Beyonce when they’d rather talk about The Avett Brothers. Or Neutral Milk Hotel, or something. I probably don’t know the name of the band he wants to cover, because I’m not that fleek.

Here’s the article.

I crafted the letter carefully, hoping to strike just the right tone of condescending mansplaination. Only, of course, I’m not mansplaining; I’m Beysplaining. Shindancer suggested I post the letter here (I don’t know if it’ll be published or not.)

So at the risk of being as smug and self-aggrandizing as this guy, here’s my best crack at Beysplaining Formation. Let me know how I did.

Scott Mervis’ preview of the Beyonce Formation tour was one of the most depressingly lazy examples of music journalism I’ve read. Not only does he joke in the first three paragraphs that Beyonce herself will take a bat to attendees’ cars–a joke that, at best, is obvious, and at worst, foments ridiculous rumors that she’s personally violent–but he also says she depicts cops as “the enemy.” If anyone with critical thinking skills listens to the album, or watches the film, they’ll understand that’s patently untrue.

Later, he says “Daddy Lessons” includes a gun that “you fear might go off in the third act.” That little dramatic hyperbole unnecessarily feeds the rhetoric about Beyonce, as well. Lastly, “Becky” isn’t slang for “white girl.” It’s slang for a narrow-minded white girl who uses sex to climb the social ladder.

I have no idea whether Mervis likes the album or if he’s seen the tour and can speak to it personally. My suspicion is that he’s annoyed that he has to cover a female pop star’s tour, conducted his research on Buzzfeed, and opted for rabble-rousing over a real review. (Aside from the shoutouts to local Pittsburgh musicians, of course.)

That said: I’d like to see a more in-depth piece about the “local industry insider” who believes that “women don’t want to see other women” at concerts. As a woman who’s attending the Formation tour with three other women (and we’re all also seeing Dolly Parton later this summer), it seems to me that a reason women aren’t seeing other women is because the men in power aren’t actually bringing women here.

Newsflash: Women like music by women. Women have friends who also like music by women. And women have money. In the words of the Queen Bey: “Boy, bye.”


Dissecting the Nerds Montage.

Lerlines, do you remember how I told you that at least once a day, someone stumbles upon this blog by typing “your mother’s old douchebag” into Google and then arriving upon the cleaning-the-house  montage from Revenge of the Nerds I put up on here to cheer Jody on while she was doing some work on her house? Well…it’s true, and I think some of them are actually looking for the Nerds montage. here. Here it is again: 


But not Tim Troiano, he’s different. He did not search for your mother’s old douchbag, or anyone’s old douchebag for that matter. Oh no Not Tim. He arrived on this very silly blog with the very serious intent of analyzing, in great detail for his very serious digital media blog, the montage itself. Check it out. It’s really quite fascinating. Fascinating that anyone could take a scene in Revenge of the Nerds more seriously than us.

Here’ s a sample of the data he compiled:

:14-:20 The nerdy guy from before in a medium long shot is too far from a pole but trying to paint it. His friend walks up and moves him closer so his paint brush is making contact with the house’s support. In this shot everybody is working including the robot. This is the most work we’ve seen done in a shot since the montages start meaning a lot of progress has been made on the house.

He never even mentions douchebags! The restraint is astounding. Seriously, thanks for stopping in,Tim. Let us know if we can help you with anything else. The psychological effects of the scene where Jeannie falls on the ice and can’t get up in Flashdance? A comparing and contrasting of Grease and Grease 2? Hidden  social-economic commentary in Clue? Anything at all, darling. You just let us know.