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Good Morning Nanty Glo!
Saturday, April 14 2001


If music is, as biblically defined, a joyful noise, what is whining, complaining, vengeful, violent and venom-filled noise? If it's set to a beat and other instrumental accompaniment and made to rhyme even if its most common trait is obscene or pornographic utterance, I'd call it antimusic. Antimusic is antilife, antijoy, antifaith, -hope, and -charity.

Though I'd seen teens and 20-somethings often with boom boxes blaring out obscene rap and hiphop on the streets of San Francisco during trips to "the City" over the past two decades, my attention to the phenomon of hiphop and rap was elevated to a new level when, in a visit to Nanty Glo last summer, after parking my car in the Fire Hall lot and starting to walk away, I heard the same filthy lyrics at a volume that could be heard all over downtown. My immediate reaction was a defensive stiffening of posture...I'd been conditioned to fear when those sounds were heard...to assume the survival posture appropriate to the urban jungle.

But the source in the Nanty Glo Fire Hall parking lot was a $25,000 customized oversized pickup truck occupied by a clean-cut fair-haired youth, the type I've even longer been conditioned not to fear but to smile at and nod hello to. He didn't even look surly or angry, in contrast to most of the youth on the streets of San Francisco, so why would he be directing an assault on beautiful downtown Nanty Glo? At the time, I had no clues, leaving my questions with the guess that this was just the "popular music" of his time.

I still think that's the case, but lately I've thought more about "his time." How different it would be to be growing up in an era when baseball heroes are routinely busted for hard drug use, and NFL football players get charged with murder. When no one even talks positively about chastity and saving anything for anything but assumes that whoring is the norm...no wonder all the rappers consider women generally "hos" and themselves ho-mongers and pimps. When "Porn Star" is a badge of glorification worn proudly on car bumpers, pickup back windows, and T-shirts. When high school and even elementary school teachers are almost routinely charged with having sex with students....

Maybe the antimusic is not so much angry and violent, as I'd thought, as it is (and often sounds, especially in the vocals by Eminem, who seems to be "the flavor of the month" right now) a plaintive plea for an idealism formerly considered a right of youth, but that now, more realistically, such innocence is withheld even from prepubescent children.

Will the pendumlum ever swing back? Or are these the last of the last days? Lord have mercy.

Webmaster Jon Kennedy

Interesting defense

A lawyer defending a man accused of burglary tried a creative defense: "My client merely inserted his arm into the window and removed a few trifling articles. His arm is not himself, and I fail to see how you can punish the whole individual for an offense committed by his limb."

"Well put," the judge replied. "Using your logic, I sentence the defendant's arm to one year's imprisonment. He can accompany it or not, as he chooses." The defendant smiled. With his lawyer's assistance, he detached his artificial limb, laid it on the bench, and walked out.

Sent by Mike Harrison

Holy Week reading

Now when the centurion, and those with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, "Truly this was the Son of God.

And many women who had followed Jesus from Galilee and ministering to him were there, watching from a distance, Among them was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee's children.

When evening came, a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus' disciple, arrived. He went to Pilate, and requested the body of Jesus. Then Pilate ordered the body to be delivered.

And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre and departed. And there was Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, sitting over against the sepulchre.

The next day, following the day of the preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together to Pilate, asking, "Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, 'After three days I will rise again.' Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night and steal him away and say to the people, that He is risen from the dead, so the last error would be worse than the first."

Pilate said to them, "You have a watch; go your way, make it as sure as you can."

So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.

Gospel of St. Matthew, 27:54-66

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