Friday, December 16, 2005

Authority Song

I just got reading a little thing about Richard Pryor on Slate. This caught my eye:

"The death of Pryor—a great enemy of ignorance—inspired in me a deep sense of my own ignorance. I knew him only as a distant icon: the guy with the sloping mustache, the shifting face, and the arsenal of voices. As a kid I had seen several of his side project—the famous Saturday Night Live slur-off with Chevy Chase, Superman III, The Toy—but I had never seen his stand-up."

Nothing against the writer, but why should we care at all about what he has to say about Richard Pryor if he is completely ignorant of his standup? The subhead for the article is "The most human comic of our time." If the writer hadn't seen Pryor perform as a comic until this week, how can we trust that claim (not that anyone could prove or disprove it)? I wonder how many people reading this could have written a much more illuminating article about Richard Pryor than this guy at Slate. And I wonder how many people pitched interesting stories to Slate about Richard Pryor but were turned down because they didn't know anyone who worked there. Oh well, I guess that's why we have blogs. Power to the people.

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