The Kanye State Of Mind
or “How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Accept We are All, in Some Small Way, Kanye West”
Inspired, in part, by Kanye’s recent rant on Twitter. Also, written with my tongue firmly placed in my cheek.
I do not hate Kanye West.
I think the man is an obnoxious egomaniac who is so far divorced from the concepts of “reality” and “humility” that it is alternately laughable and frightening.
But I do not hate Kanye West.
Why? Partially because Kanye continues to make good music. Between his own albums and his guest/production work, he really has put out an alarming number of hits. And as much as I might roll my eyes at his antics, his music is still good.
But there’s more than that. You see, I can’t hate Kanye West because of a dark little secret of mine. Something you might actually share with me if you keep reading this.
I’m jealous of Kanye West. Not because he’s got money or that his biggest problems seem to involve finding carpets with cherubs on them. But because Kanye West is Kanye West.
Hear me out.
Kanye West never for a second allows us to see any self-doubt. He is so assured of everything he does and everything he creates that it never enters into his mind that he should stop. His fashion collections may end up panned, he might end up reviled for statements he’s made, but he never doubts any of it. Or at least never lets us see that doubt.
And I wish I knew how to do that. I wish I knew how to find the part of myself that could be Kanye West and allow it out for brief periods of time.
You see, sometimes, when I’m trying to write or create something, I stop. I freeze. I can’t even get started or get past the first paragraph because I am so sure that everything I do is crap. I can’t stop self-editing. I can only think of the bad, of what’s wrong with what I’ve done before I’ve even done it.
This is not a problem for Kanye West, because Kanye West never does anything wrong. Everything he creates is GOLDEN in his own mind. He does not sit at a computer, fingers hovering over the keyboard in horror as he considers that what he’s about to write is derivative, schlock, BAD. Instead, he forges ahead with lines like “What comes next? Alien sex!”
And in those times, I want to be Kanye West. I want to just be able to go, with the state of mind that what I’m writing right now is what I should be writing right now and screw anyone who doesn’t like it. The Kanye State of Mind is one of pure creation. The state where you might be aware of what critics or peers would say, but you honestly don’t care because how could they be right? You’re KANYE WEST.
Of course, there’s the caveat to this that not even Kanye has figured out: at some point, we all have to STOP being Kanye, look over our work critically and decide whether it works or doesn’t work once we’re off the Yeezy High. Yes, you need to come down off of the Kanye State of Mind to edit your work, and it’s best to do this before you show it to anyone else.
They wouldn’t understand.
They’re not Kanye West.