Am I the Only One Who’s Much More Offended by “Achy Breaky Heart”?

Much has been made of twerkgate 2013, the hallowed event the changed the very course of the 2013 MTV Music Video Awards as we know it. Rather look introspectively and getting to the bottom of why we cared so deeply as a nation about a meaningless awards show on a network that hasn’t been relevant since February of 2005, when YouTube launched, the discussion has instead centered around seasoned triple threat Miley Cyrus.

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This is the butt dancing aspect of the triple threat.

Well, because of that ^

Never mind that I’ve been to Bar Mitzvah parties with comparably raunchy performances, I think everybody needs to acknowledge an objective truth: “Achy Breaky Heart” by Billy Ray Cyrus is a much, much more severe transgression against humanity than anything Miley Cyrus has or will ever do to society.

Exhibit A: Song Title

Billy Ray wanted to write a song about how his heart was feeling no good, and he was dead-set on using the word ‘achy.’ Achy, while much more commonly used to describe flu symptoms, is perhaps a passable expression for entertainment uses. But why, oh why, did he decide to follow that up by making up a word and calling it ‘breaky.’ It’s enough to make me wish Dr. Seuss was alive so that he would furiously kick Billy Ray Cyrus’ ass over his weak rhyme game.

Exhibit B:

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Call PETA, there’s a living thing hanging off the back of Mr. Cyrus’ head.

Exhibit B:

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OH SHIT, IT GOT LOOSE!

Exhibit C:

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What the actual fuck?

EXHIBIT D:

Achy Breaky Heart

WHERE IS YOUR GOD NOW?

Exhibit E:

This is an actual verse from the song:

You can tell your ma I moved to Arkansas
You can tell your dog to bite my leg
Or tell your brother Cliff whose fist can can tell my lip
He never really liked me anyway

That reads like the type of insane ramblings you’d probably find scribbled in blood on the back of a Burger King napkin at Penn Station.

Final case:

When I was in 7th grade, I moved from Houston, Texas to Oakville, Ontario, where I was forced to not only take on a new culture and sensibility, but also, a new middle school — a much more daunting task. I definitely wasn’t the most popular kid and was always very desperate to bring some sort of attention to myself because I thought that would be the only way the other kids in my class would realize I existed. This was a pretty sound strategy to establish myself as ‘the shitty American kid’ early on in my esteemed tenure at E.J. James Middle School.

We had a co-ed gym class and one of our units that year was dancing. We did several forms of dance (swing, salsa, other shit I’m sure) and in general — as would be a re-occurring theme in relation to dance as well as many other things in my lifetime, but especially dance — I was fucking terrible.

One day, our gym teacher said we would be learning line dancing. She asked if anybody knew how to line dance, and without thinking it through (at all), my hand shot up in the air. I mean surely my line dancing prowess would win over the class, my stupid, stupid 7th grade mind thought.

I wasn’t sure what I expected to happen next. The truth was I hadn’t line danced once in my life and the most I knew about it was one scene in the movie Cool Runnings when Jamaica’s finest bobsled team went to a two-step bar in Calgary and they had that great scene where Junior announced he had pride and power and I think he really connected with Yul Brynner, which is still the funniest name ever.

This was the basis of everything I knew about line dancing.

“Perfect,” the gym teacher responded. “Why don’t you teach us our first dance.” It’s only now, literally this second, that I realized the reason she did this wasn’t to promote class involvement but because she really didn’t know shit about line dancing either but some weird Ontario Board of Education representative put that on the list of stuff students need to know so she had to go with it. The class giggled a bit but I, filled with fear in my heart, decided to play the faux-confidence card (a big hit with middle schoolers and adults alike) and walked to the front of the class. Then it came on. “You can tell the world you never was my girl,” I start awkwardly shuffling sideways left, “You can burn my clothes when I’m gone,” I forget what sidestepping looks like and abandon the shuffling for a full out walk to my right, “Or you can tell your friends just what a fool I’ve been,” Still walking right, “And laugh and joke about me on the phone,” Um, spin! “You can tell my arms go back to the farm” …Spin again? “You can tell my feet to hit the floor,” with no idea what else to do, I take a bow.

And then I repeated the motions that made no sense again, all by myself, in front of a group of hormone ridden 7th graders that I was desperately trying to impress.
Then I just stood there staring at the class, while that horrible, horrible chorus blared in the background. It was at that point the gym teacher decided to call the fight.
And then she told everyone to get up, started the music again, and 30 some-odd 7th graders were forced to mimic the weird kid from Texas who had no fucking clue what he was doing.
It was among the more horrifying experiences of my life and just recounting it now makes me want to jump through my computer screen and tackle my past self and assure him everything will get better after high school but seriously, you really need to stop doing shit like this because you’re not going to make high school any easier.
Billy Ray Cyrus played the soundtrack of my demise, and for that, I will never forgive him.
ImageBut also, I refuse to forgive him for this.
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