Kanye West is known first most for his ego, and second for his music. Whether or not you enjoyed Late Registration or thought that his second Grammy debacle this year where he interrupted Beck was warranted, we can all agree on one thing: Kanye loves talking about himself.
And you know what? Good for him. If I could get paid thousands of dollars an hour just to stand around and blurt out whatever popped into my head then I totally would. Who wouldn’t? You could stand in the front of a giant lecture hall filled with Oxford students and talk about how The Matrix is like the Bible, or how Steve Jobs is a selfish for dying without passing on whatever remaining ideas he had for Apple. For blurting out these random thoughts you would get paid handsomely and get the extra reward of a standing ovation at the end, although I have a feeling if you or I did this we’d have rotting vegetables thrown at us because who the fuck connects The Matrix to the Bible?
Kanye West, that’s who!
This past Monday Kanye gave a 20 minute speech/stream of consciousness/tirade to a lecture hall full of Oxford University students, and because Kanye is Kanye he made sure to tell everyone to shut up beforehand, stating “I can literally hear a whisper, and it’ll throw off my stream of consciousness, and when I get my stream of consciousness going that’s when I give the best, illest quotes.”
Yup, the illest.
Here are the “highlights,” beginning with how The Matrix is like the Bible of 2015:
“There’s a Bible saying, ‘No weapon formed against me shall prosper’. Recently I’ve been doing interviews and I’ve had to go back to this verse because I don’t think there’s a living celebrity with more weapons formed against them, but I also don’t think there’s one more prosperous. So what weapons have prospered? The smoke and mirrors of other opinions.
What I said [to McQueen] was The Matrix is like the Bible of the post-information age… I compared it like when the hundred guys come at Neo, those are opinions, that’s perception, that’s tradition. Attacking people from every which angle possible. If you have a focus wide and master senseis like Laurence Fishburne and you have a squad behind you, you literally can put the world in slow motion.”
Steve Jobs is selfish, you guys:
“I love Steve Jobs, he’s my favorite person, but there’s one thing that disappoints me. When Steve passed he didn’t give the ideas up. That’s kinda selfish. You know that Elon’s like ‘yeah, take these ideas’. Maybe there are companies outside of Apple that could work on them and push humanity forward. Maybe the stock brokers won’t like that, the stock holders wouldn’t like that idea, but ideas are free and you can’t be selfish with them.”
Plastic kid shit is the devil:
“I’d see toys that some people would buy for my daughter and I’d say this toy isn’t quality. I don’t want my daughter playing with this. There’s not enough love put into this, this is just manufactured with the will to sell, and not the will of inspiration.
[Vanessa Beecroft] bought my daughter these three wolves, knowing the whole collection, that it’d play with the song Wolves, and based on this concept. And when my daughter saw these wolves, I’ve never seen her so happy. She was going so crazy, she was grabbing one, she was riding on top of one… I’ve never seen her happier than this moment. That level of happiness seems to be the thing that we’re fighting for every day, that we’re trying to buy back, trying to work for, especially in America…
We’ve been sold a concept of joy through advertising, through car advertising, through fashion branding. It’s not the concept of time, time with your family, time with your friends, the little time that we do have on earth and what we do with that. It was somehow sold to us through a Gucci bag or something.
Time is the only luxury. It’s the only thing you can’t get back. If you lose your luggage – I’m not gonna say the obvious brand of luggage that I’d normally say because I’ve got a meeting with them soon – if you lose your expensive luggage at the airport, you can get that back. You can’t get the time back.”
It feels like people do everything in life to get this BMW, this Benz, to get this townhome, to get 2.5 kids exactly. One of them has to be small, y’know! And you’re looking for this moment where you sit in your BMW after all the work you’ve done and all the accolades you get, and you somehow think you’re gonna get that level of joy that my daughter had when she received those wolves. And when you’re sitting in traffic in your BMW, it’s something that feels empty. To everyone who reaches that point. This concept of the selfish human, this idea of separation by race, or gender, or religion, or age, or my favorite thing to hate, class.”
Nicki Minaj beat the shit out of Kanye once:
“One of the most memorable things about MBDTF was Nicki Minaj, and the fact that she kicked my ass, on my own song, on one of the best albums…the best album – I’m just saying what the critics said – of the last 25 years. The best album of the past 25 years that I spent a year and a half making, out there. I was exiled from my country, it was a personal exile, but exile. To come back and deliver my magnum opus of a work, and to be outshined… to be beat by a girl, basically. This was necessary. I think it was one of the most important points of working on that album, was to not stop her from her moment because of how good she is.”
And as a succinct little ending that maybe ties stuff together but also maybe not because, y’know, rambling Kanye:
“People say to me ‘you’re successful, what are you crying about?’. I’m crying about the people. I’m crying about their daughters. Our daughters, as one family. What good is it. What good is anything that everyone can’t have. Every ism. They think we’re done with racism. What about elitism, what about separatism, what about classism? That’s all.”