Afroman‘s seminal 2000 confessional Because I Got High is a remarkably introspective mea culpa from a man in gripped by personal turmoil because he simply hoovered far too many bongs. Far less a novelty song of, and only of, its own time, the lyrics paint a picture of a man in a downward spiral because he’s ruined more joints than a rookie cabinet maker.
But what’s saddest of all, perhaps, is that the vast majority of Afroman’s misfortunes, missteps, and misappropriations are entirely avoidable through pure common sense.
Though it may be 19 years too late for him, I’ve decided to meticulously pick apart Afroman’s confessions – one by one – until I’ve identified the solutions that would have saved him from ruining his life. Consider this your cautionary Weed Day tale. A series of simple fixes that would have prevented every problem Afroman encountered… because he got high.
“I Was Gonna Clean My Room”
Afroman should have cleaned his room.
“I Was Gonna Get Up And Find The Broom”
In any organised house, a broom is likely to be found in either the laundry or a garage. Why Afroman required a broom to clean his room poses a whole set of other questions, but I’m not here to tell anyone how to live.
“My Room Is Still Messed Up”
At this point, after acknowledging the fact that yes, you did just inhale a third of Nimbin’s yearly yield, the best course of action is to simply accept that your room is a tip and make plans to rectify it when your brain resumes normal non-pile of goo form. A mistake today can always be fixed tomorrow!
“I Was Gonna Go To Class”
Afroman should have gone to class.
“I Coulda Cheated And I Coulda Passed”
To solve this issue, Afroman should have resisted the urge to cheat. Instead, he should have studied the course material and passed on his own merit.
“I’m Taking It Next Semester”
Here, Afroman exhibits one of the few pro-active self-corrections present in the song: He acknowledges that his own missteps have caused his academics to lag, and he endeavours to make up for it by repeating the course in the forthcoming term. This is a solved problem, there is no need for additional comment.
“I Was Gonna Go To Work”
Afroman should have, and I cannot stress this enough, gone to work.
“I Just Got A New Promotion”
The timeline of events in this scenario intrigues me. The “just” implies it happened mere seconds ago, meaning the promotion was awarded, he went away and got high, and instead of going back to work as required he continued to get more high. The only conclusion I can draw here is that he ripped bongs on his lunch break immediately after receiving said promotion, and gotten so high he forgot to go back. And if so, he should not have done that.
“Now I’m Selling Dope”
Selling dope was illegal in the year 2000, and it remains a crime in Australia to this very day. Entrepreneurship and small business is to be encouraged at every opportunity, but perhaps Afroman should have opened an Etsy store instead.
“I Was Gonna Go To Court”
Afroman should have, and let me be very clear about this, gone to court.
“I Was Gonna Pay My Child Support”
A child is a responsibility; a lifelong commitment regardless of whether or not the procreating relationship remains on-going. In the event of its breakdown, contributing financial support for the health, education, and upbringing of the child is not a choice that can be forgotten on a whim due to the inhalation of wobby weed. It is a non-negotiable.
“They Took My Whole Paycheque”
Whatever back alley-ass pizza box lawyer that managed to get 100% of the wages Afroman doesn’t even have anymore garnished should have been fired, and additional court challenges should have been initiated as soon as humanly possible. Old mate got absolutely rorted by the legal system on this one.
“I Wasn’t Gonna Run From The Cops”
Afroman should not have… actually this one is a hell of a lot more complicated than just “not doing the thing” so I’m gonna leave it alone.
“I Was Gonna Pull Right Over And Stop”
Seriously, there’s a whole range of racial and civil rights issues at play here. It’s not my experience at all and I’d be foolish to issue comment.
“Now I’m A Paraplegic”
This whole verse is just… it’s a real can of worms. I refuse to go anywhere near it. It’s not my place.
“I Was Gonna Pay My Car Note”
Afroman should have paid his car note. I cannot possibly overstate this.
“I Wasn’t Gonna Gamble On The Boat”
I don’t even know what the fuck this one is supposed to mean but my instinct tells me Afroman should have at least attempted to keep all his gambling endeavours on dry land.
“Now The Tow Truck Is Pulling Away”
Chasing a tow truck is absolutely ill-advised in almost any situation, but if you’re reasonably confident your car has more torque than the truck and you’re still in possession of the keys I am utterly powerless to stop you.
“I Was Gonna Make Love To You”
Afroman, hear me out on this, should have made love to you.
“I Was Gonna Eat Your Pussy Too”
This is a weak excuse. Even if a few servings of the old Jamaican Breakfast have rendered him utterly incapacitated, having the recipient ride his face like a damned mechanical bull is always a viable option. Afroman should not make promises he can’t keep, and he shouldn’t brag about head he wasn’t willing to deliver. Put the bong down and eat her out, coward.
“Now I’m Jackin’ Off”
As per above: If Afroman was not too high to crank his terrible hog then he certainly wasn’t too high to go down on you. Boo.
“I Messed Up My Entire Life”
Afroman should have, at all costs and by any means necessary, not messed up his entire life.
“I Lost My Kids And Wife”
Not even a skerrick of this song up until this point paints a picture of a married father. This is a truly shocking development to learn three minutes into a novelty song about tooting the Gatorade Saxophone.
“Now I’m Sleeping On The Sidewalk”
I’ve lived with a plethora of burnout housemates that managed to keep a compost pile of weed on them at all times while still somehow making rent. If I were Afroman, in this scenario, I would have ensured I kept a roof over my head by paying rent on time, as normal.
“I’m Gonna Stop Singing This Song”
Afroman should, and please stay with me here, stop singing this song.
“I’m Singing This Whole Thing Wrong”
This calls the entire song into question. Is he singing it wrong in the sense that he believes he’s been off-key? Or is he singing it wrong in that his recollection of events is completely askew, making him an unreliable narrator? Throwing that kind of plot-thickener in this late in the game is flat-out rude.
“And If I Don’t Sell One Copy”
This song peaked at number one in ten countries and sold somewhere in the vicinity of 2.5 million copies globally. Despite the turmoil he suffered throughout the song, it’s fairly safe to say he recovered from it fairly well. Regardless of whether or not he, in fact, got high.
Really makes you think, folks.