Saturday, November 27, 2010

My First Kiss

Have you ever heard of 3OH!3? Yes, it’s spelled that way. I know at least one of my readers is out of my generation, so I’ll explain before I get to the main point. 3OH!3 is the stage name for a rapping duo that’s extremely popular. The beats are insanely catchy. That’s one part of their popularity; the second part is some sincerely clever rhyming; the third part is the recurring appearance of sex and swearing.

So why talk about them? They have this song called “My First Kiss” that I want to make a contrast with. Below I've embedded the song's music video. (WARNING: EXPLICIT CONTENT)

Now here's a different clip...

The second video is from The Princess Bride. If you haven't seen the whole film, you are in a critical state of cultural deprivation and you need to watch it immediately after you finish this post.

Think about these two videos for a minute. You see kisses in both them. They way they’re portrayed says something about kissing, and by extension love, and by extension ourselves. 

Which kiss looks happy?

Which kiss looks beautiful?

Which kiss do you want? 


  1. 3OH!3 I'll admit it, I never heard of them. & while they are probably better than a lot that is out there. & while the " the recurring appearance of sex and swearing" is probably part of what makes them popular, that is nothing new in music. The artist formerly known as "The artist formerly known as Prince" made it a huge part of his repotoire. & its roots go back to my era of the late 60s early 70s. Granted a lot was kept off the air back then that would be allowed now. Unfortunately.

    Anyhow on to your question. Clearly 3OH!3 is equating a kiss with sex whereas in the 2nd video it is clearly a couple truly in love.

    I will grant that in an earlier time, much of what is in the 1st video was the mindset of many, it was just kept hidden. Or only hinted at as it was in my parents generation. Maybe the reason is because enough people still saw love as much more than simply sex.

    Then came the 60s & well, you know the rest. Our culture has become a cesspool in some ways.

    PS While The Princess Bride is a good movie, I'd debate your evaluation about being culturally deprived if I didn't respect your right to your opinion on what movies you think are best. :)

  2. That doesn't surprise me much, what you say about the "mindset of many". Eye-opening commentary here and on the Puritan post, by the way. I truly appreciate it. Thank you.

    A big problem now is that this song, and others similar, are the stuff that everyone listens to. I've known several people who are Catholic, go to Mass, are great people, and listen to 3OH!3. They'll sort of... oh... there's various excuses they have.

    I got caught up in it for a while, and I tried to ignore what they were saying and focus on the music. I think many others have that problem, too. Still more, it seems, are just jumping on the bandwagon. Trying to be cool.

    There's this ideal I see in our generation, whether they realize it or not, of this young, hip, Catholic college kid who's just a cheerful, good-looking guy that everyone gets along with. He loves Mass and the other religious things, and how joyful they make him. Not once does he gets caught up in trouble of any kind. And he does all the pop culture stuff, too; he's open-minded.

    I'm been thinking lately, and wondering how dangerous such an ideal is. Especially considering how much a cesspool popular culture is becoming.

    P.S. Don't be afraid to tell me why The Princess Bride is not a cultural necessity.

  3. " this song, and others similar, are the stuff that everyone listens to."

    I am sure that you are aware that isn't just a problem with your generation. There is some great early 70s Rock that is great, except for the subject of the lyrics. For example, there was a song on a local station last night where the guy was singing about how he was cheating on his gal with someone who was cheating on her guy because the sex was so great.

    & the "young, hip, Catholic college kid" sounds like a lot of people from my generation as well.

    The question seems to be how to balance being in "the world" while not letting that "world" set the agenda? At what point does it cross over from eating with sinners as Jesus did to reach out to them, to condoning sin?

    Again Sean, I am sure you realize that this is not limitted to your generation/age group.

    Being open minded is 1 thing, letting anything in that is a part of the cultural cesspool is another. yes, it is dangerous to uncritically do all the pop culture stuff. & it is very hard to not do it all if you want to fit in. While some things in the current culture are OK, obviously other things aren't. & those things aren't always easy to avoid.

    But, living out the Catholic faith means you will have to often be countercultural. Not 60s hippie style, but by truly living out the faith, doing the best you can to avoid the garbage in pop culture. By avoiding, I don't mean going off to a monastery. While some people are called to that life they don't go there to avoid life, but to confront it. (if that makes any sense.) It means making choices, being honest with your friends about doing or not doing certain things.

    As I said, a huge part of living your Catholic faith is that you are countercultural. & if that means not being what people call "hip" then it means, to borrow from Huey Lewis, that you realize it is hip to be square. Real hip or cool doesn't come from fitting in or being "with it". It means following Christ on the narrow path. Following Christ is the real ideal. & I have to be honest, it will come at a cost of not always fitting in with the crowd. Getting along is fine, going along not always.

    I suppose there is a lot more I could say, but for now I'll leave it at the above.

    As for Princess Bride & culturally deprived, mostly I was just trying to give you a friendly hard time. But, I could also take you to a few really solid faithful Catholic monasteries where the women or men there probably have never seen the movie. Given how they are living their life in prayerful service to the Church, would you call them culturally deprived?