Monday, January 30, 2012

M.I.A. and the arms aloft quandary

One of these days, rappers will discover that putting your hands up in the air isn't as difficult or amazing as they think. Look, I just did it now. And again. My hands go up and down at will. And I'm not alone. I was in a school classroom recently (18 years ago) and the kids were putting their hands up all the time. In the supermarket this weekend, I even saw a woman of very advanced years put her hand up, in order to reach a packet of Bourbon biscuits that had been placed on a high shelf.

Eventually, I went onto Wikipedia and checked up on this phenomenon. Apparently, the ability to raise your hand above shoulder height is common to all primates. It's no big deal. Chimps can do it less than half an hour after they're born.

So come on, rappers, let's have some REAL challenges in your music. I have some suggestions:

  • Fold your legs over your shoulders like you just don't care
  • Pat your head and rub your stomach at the same time for Detroit
  • Throw your hands up (having previously cooked them into a warming casserole, then tried to swallow them prompting an involuntary gag reflex) in the air

While this message filters through to the hip-hop community, here is M.I.A., whose supremely slinky new single Bad Girls contains several "hands up" moments.

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