Stir It Up
Mulenga Harangua builds a shrine to Richard Pryor
Published: November 24, 2010
"Well, to be true to the experience shouldn't you have some freebase rocks in there?"
Mulenga paused for a few seconds and looked around. "Do you really think I should? There's a guy 'round the corner I could get some from."
'No, no, no. I think this is just fine. Burning up was a learning experience for him. What's that Mudbone used to say? 'Don't get old being no fool, lot of young wise men deader than a motherfucker.'"
"Yeah, I was never quite sure what that means."
"I always took it to mean there is a difference between being book smart and street smart. Sometimes book smart doesn't help you in situations when common sense is needed. So what are those other pictures up there? That looks like Louis Armstrong, Pablo Picasso, Redd Foxx, Moms Mabley. Is that Lenny Bruce? And who's that white lady dancer?"
"That's Martha Graham. Those are the santos, saints, in his stratosphere, the great artists that he was among, the difference-makers who stand out as the best. That's the thing. I listen to this stuff and it's still funny 30 years later."
"OK, well, I've got to go." I headed for the door and turned back for a moment. "And be careful with those candles. You don't want to get lit up like Richard."'
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