You would be hard-pressed to find people who are more heavily stereotyped in this world than people who live in New York. Okay, maybe Middle Easterners. But other than that, New Yorkers.
To the outside eye, New Yorkers are rude, obnoxious, loud and arrogant. We’re always in a rush, we talk with an annoying accent, and we always expect our sports teams to win everything.
Of course, those of us who live in Long Island or in the northern or western parts of New York know that we do not apply to these stereotypes. But that doesn’t really matter. Once you tell people that you live in New York, they immediately think awful things about you.
And you know what? I don’t really blame them that much. There are plenty of people out there who give New Yorkers a bad name. But that’s the case for any place. Every city has its fair share of douchebags.
But I also believe this — they say that everything is bigger in Texas, right? Well, ask any New Yorker, and they’ll tell you that everything is better in New York.
Case and point: last night’s 12/12/12 Hurricane Sandy benefit concert.
Even when New York gets the ever-loving shit kicked out of us, we still do it better. Even when New York is ravaged and beaten down, we still manage to get the biggest stars in the world to come and perform for six straight hours.
Hurricane Katrina was a million times worse than Hurricane Sandy. But aside from Kanye West being a moron, can somebody tell me one single highlight from their benefit concert? Just one?
If a state like Oregon was punished with a severe hurricane, would anybody even bother arranging a concert? Paul McCartney and Billy Joel would probably start laughing hysterically at the mere thought of performing in Oregon under any circumstances.
Meanwhile, New York gets destroyed, and we respond by assembling Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, The Who, The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, Bon Jovi, Roger Waters and Eric Clapton in one stadium?
I mean, freaking Nirvana played together. Nirvana! They’ve been nonexistence for almost 20 years. Even Michael Skype of REM came out of retirement for this concert. I’d honestly be genuinely surprised if there was one musician in the world who wouldn’t have dropped everything and headed to New York to get a chance to play at this concert.
I mean, just look at that last picture. Pete Townshend is 67 and isn’t even physically capable of performing an athletic jump like that. But put him in Madison Square Garden in front of 20,000 New Yorkers, and he suddenly reverts back to his 20s.
Townshend proved that just the act of being in New York gives you superhuman abilities.
Seriously though, those images are impressive.
And I’m going to be honest — I missed a good chunk of the concert since I was not home (thus why I did not blog yesterday), and I missed a bunch of the performances. I’m looking at the setlist right now, and did Kanye West really perform 13 songs? Are you shitting me?
That would give him the longest set than anyone else on the bill — six more than Billy Joel and five more than Paul McCartney. What an absolute disgrace.
The fact that Kanye West was even allowed to perform among such great musical acts was atrocious as it was, but how did he get to perform 13 freaking songs?
And what the hell was he wearing?
One more time. A skirt. I just don’t know what else to say. He was performing on one of the grandest stages that he ever will be on, among some of the greatest living musicians we have, and yet he worse a skirt.
But you know what, just typing that last sentence actually made a little sense to me. Perhaps Kanye knew he didn’t belong. Maybe he was aware of the fact that he was by far the worst person performing last night. So, being the natural attention whore that he is (“George Bush doesn’t care about black people/Taylor I’mma let you finish…”), he had to grab the headlines in some way. And that’s what he did.
Also, how can you not love Adam Sandler? The man may not be as young and kooky as he used to be back during his SNL and Billy Madison days, but he is still a comedic genius.
His rendition of Leonard Cohen’s — and made more famous by Jeff Buckley — “Hallelujah” while substituting in his own New York-themed lyrics was nothing short of genius. Genius.
Check it out:
So good. Well done, Adam.
To sum up — New York just does it better. And also, I was amused when every other artist would talk about how we’re going to rebuild New York, and then as an afterthought, they’d throw in New Jersey and Long Island. Their hesitation in listing the other two areas was evidence that they, and no one else, really gives a shit about New Jersey or Long Island, because we’re not New York.
I live in Long Island, and even I know that. Besides, I don’t even give a shit about Long Island.
But at the end of the day, it really was a show to remember. I recorded it on my DVR, and I think I’m going to let it sit there for a while.
That is, until I have to record an episode of The Voice and need to clear space.
Hey, at least I won’t have to see Kanye’s skirt again.