Tuesday, October 17, 2006

I Believe I Owe the Beastie Boys an Apology

I've been on a Beastie Boys kick for a couple of... years now. On and off. As my friend Corey can tell you, I've been annoyingly fixated on Licensed to Ill for a while, especially the track Paul Revere.

I think I've mentioned a few times how I avoided the album through early adulthood, mostly due to an extreme dislike of Fight for Your Right to Party (because of overexposure in high school).

But it's a really good album.

I finally bought it in September.

Anyway, Jeffro over at Last Second Comeback posted an item that hit the feed about a Beastie Boys Annotated site, so I checked it out.

One thing that always made me feel a little funny (and that's "uncomfortable"-funny, not "climbing the rope in gym class"-funny) was this bit from Paul Revere:
I said, "I'll ride with you if you can get me to the border
The sheriff's after me for what I did to his daughter
I did it like this - I did it like that
I did it with a whiffleball bat"
Now, see, all this time, I've thought this was an unpleasant reference to the Glen Ridge Rape Case, where three upper-middle-class NJ teenagers were convicted of sexually assaulting a mentally-retarded 17-year-old girl, including with a bat of some sort (I remember reading it described as a fungo bat -- I still don't know what a fungo bat is.)

It's only now, that I realize I forgot one simple, obvious thing:

The Glen Ridge rape case was in 1989.

Licensed to Ill came out in 1986.

Of course the whiffleball bat lyric couldn't be a reference to Glen Ridge.

I just figured this out today.

It's kind of like how I first thought the big shootout in Michael Mann's 1995 Heat was based on the North Hollywood bank robbery shootout of 1997 (when it quite possibly was the other way around).

Could it have been life imitating art? Hard to say.

Anyway, I owe the Beastie Boys an apology for maligning them psychically via the thoughts in my head.


Anonymous said...

Mmmm. Beastles.

Anonymous said...

The first song my oldest son learned to sing? Not Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star or ABC... It was No Sleep Till Brooklyn. From the back of the car... "No weep till... BWOOKWYN!!!"

Anonymous said...

Welcome back to civilization :)

Joelogon said...

Cabbie -- I wasn't aware I'd left. -- Joe

Anonymous said...

Back when that crime occurred, the talk was that it was, in fact, inspired by the Beasties song.

Fun fact: The original pre-LP 12" inch single has different writing credits than the later LP or CD. The song was only really penned by Ad Rock and producer Rick Rubin; when the LP came out later, they gave the group credit for whatever reason (politics?).

Anonymous said...

I've posted this in my weblog somewhere before, but I was about third or fourth grade when I had a dubbed copy of "Purple Rain" made for me by my aunt who was probably late in HS by that time.

It was years before I realised that the line in "Darling Nikki" wasn't "Master bedroom in a magazine". For a long time I thought she was sitting there in the hotel lobby reading a guest copy of Better Homes and Gardens or something.

Of course, I late grew up. Not sure what excuse you can use.

Joelogon said...

I think you have my entry, which is about anachronism, corn-fuzed with some sort of entry about Mondegreens. -- Joe