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Obit: MF Doom (1971-2020)

Internets, The passing of the legendary MF Doom was a tragic way to end 2020, a year that already saw

Life in a Shanty Town

January 1 · Issue #265 · View online
The hip-hop newsletter that's not afraid to ask the tough questions

The passing of the legendary MF Doom was a tragic way to end 2020, a year that already saw more than its fair share of disappointments including, this week alone, the deaths of Adolfo “Shabba Doo” Quinones and Ecstasy from Whodini, two early influences on my fashion sense.
It was especially tragic for me, since I started listening to Doom’s music before anyone else did. I actually prefer some of his more obscure works to the albums he’s most famous for. When I hear people say that Madvillainy is their favorite MF Doom album, I look down on them. But I don’t say anything, because I know this is a difficult time for everyone. I’m considerate like that.
No but really.
Doom actually died on Halloween, and I guess left instructions not to announce his passing until late in the afternoon on New Year’s Eve, as one does, in an intentional effort to put a damper on what already would have been a solemn, somber evening of watching the last few episodes of The Queen’s Gambit (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, magical negro issues aside) and debating whether to rub one out before I got too wasted on Double Dog Dare Cabernet.
I won’t reveal my decision, out of respect for the late, great masked villain, other than to say the following:
1) The girl who played Beth is smokin’, in a neurologically atypical female chess expert sort of way (which might be my thing now).
2) I don’t think it was a mistake, or a coincidence, that every 15 minutes or so there’s a scene where she strips down to her underwear and changes outfits.
3) Nevertheless, her character is an excellent role model for women, even though this was obviously a work of fiction. Arguably, it should be filed under science fiction. I might email Netflix as soon as I get done typing this.
4) Even the lady who played the perpetually drunken, ill-fated adoptive mother, under the right set of circumstances, could be of some use.
5) For those of you unwilling to fork over the $5, probably because I’m black, I’ll point out that I’m also into the lady who accused the black kid of stealing her iPhone. In fact, if she’s reading this, let me just state that I think she’s being treated unfairly, and I can be contacted at the address from which I send these emails.
Anyway, I’m not sure how I feel about this New Year’s Eve surprise. On the one hand, if Doom had waited until tomorrow, if not six months from now, since apparently he was a bit of a recluse (but not a rapist), an entire year would have gone by, in a sense, without us knowing he was dead, and it would have had the effect of not ruining my NYE festivities. But on the other hand, if they’d announced that he’d died on Halloween, people would have thought it was a hoax, possibly to avoid paying money to the many record labels and concert promoters he’s ripped off over the years, and it would have made for an amusing afternoon on social media.
Really, either of those options would have been better than what ended up happening—and that’s something for us to think about in 2021. Statistically, there’s a strong likelihood that not all of us will be here this time next year. 1 in every 1,000 Americans died in 2020, and Corona is not over yet. I heard they’re having a hard time giving out the vaccine to people who already work at the hospital (so it’s not like they don’t know where it is). Hopefully, nothing bad happens to any of my paid subscribers. Regardless, let’s try to be considerate of other people’s entertainment needs.
Take it easy on yourself,

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