Tuesday, November 1, 2011
John Mayer - “Waiting On The World To Change”
We start out with random shots of some city, possibly NYC, with images of buildings and skylines. There’s not a lot of people around, which means that Glenn Beck must be in town, but this is not confirmed. Cut to John walking along the river, heading toward what could be the Brooklyn Bridge or possibly Aretha Franklin’s next hairdo. He doesn’t look very happy, but then this song isn’t exactly about brown paper packages tied up in string.
We begin seeing some folks messing around in what might be an artist’s studio, sketching out draft versions of something and flipping through picture books for inspiration. Some of these books look very, very angry. I’m going to assume that there won’t be any rainbows and unicorns in the final art project. Just a guess.
John keeps walking, because that’s just something you do in New York. (That, and pay too much for everything.) Cut back to the artist colony or whatever, and some of the folks seem to be prepping gas masks for use, which seems a little odd, even for people with the variety of tattoos that some of them have. But most of them seem content with just the sketching and the wearing of unique, confrontational clothing. (What is that one man wearing on his head? I guess we don’t have stores like that where I live.)
Things become a little clearer when the guys start gathering up spray paint cans. Ah, so we’re about to do some serious tagging, are we? I thought people did that out of boredom and/or drunkenness. I didn’t realize you had to make plans and study books and type up an itinerary. And have John Mayer narrate your story while wearing a hoodie and walking glumly next to a dirty river. Seems like a lot of work to me.
The guys finally head outside and split into a few groups, carrying their gas masks and paint cans, an image that will make innocent bystanders feel completely comfortable, right? Some of the guys are climbing over walls and such, but I don’t know if they are actually sneaking around the city or just goofing off in somebody’s backyard.
It takes a while for everyone to get to their destinations, since they first have to do important things like stop for coffee and pose with tourists while wearing the gas masks. (The tourists, like most tourists, are really happy to be having their picture taken even though they have no idea what’s going on. This is how the “American Idol” auditions were born.) Eventually, everyone gets to their locales and out come the spray cans.
It’s actually quite interesting to see how the images take shape, in an “oh, so that’s how they make the overcrowded graffiti I can see while riding the subway” kind of way. Of course, it helps that these guys are obviously actual artists, and not just degenerates unprofessionally spraying lame sentiments such as “Thump Daddy” or “Azz Master” or “U A Bitch!”.
John’s still walking along that damn river, probably wisely avoiding any legal issues that might arise from questionably-attired men spraying things like guns and exploding worlds on the side of a delicatessen. Good move, John, it’s hard to accept a Grammy from your prison cell.
So far, they’ve only let us see bits and pieces of the whole images, mixed in with odd-angle shots of cans shaking, arms spraying and defiant clothing, so there’s a bit of excitement about what the final products will look like. At the same time, this is the part of the song where John tells us about 147 times that he’s waiting on that world change mess. Got it, John, me too. Now, can we look at the pictures?
Nope, not yet, we’ve got to review some scenes of people sitting around all disaffected but hopeful, gazing at the camera with wistful longing for a better place and time. These people must work at the same place that I do.
And, finally, there we go with the big reveal. The artwork really pops, and although there may have been a bit of camera trickery, the placement of the pieces is really impressive. I’m not a fan of defacing public property, but these things look pretty cool, even more so considering they had to sneak around while they were doing this. Then the song ends and we get a disclaimer that “All murals were produced on private property by commissioned artists.”
Well, hell, that sort of sucked the fun out of it. John, dude, a bit on the wimp-out side, eh? Where’s your rebel spirit? Then again, you’ve dated Jennifer Love Hewitt, so that pretty much trumps anything I might have to say. Rock on with your law-abiding self.
Click Here to Watch the Video on YouTube.