In The Good Place, a combination of endless bickering and horrible clown portraits tips a character off that she’s in hell. In No Exit, the characters know where they are from the beginning, but it’s a dreadful Barbedienne bronze on the mantelpiece that pushes one of Satre’s doomed souls to realize the nature of his punishment, hell being other people and bad furniture and so on. Virgil just up and tells Dante where they’re going, then takes him there—plus there’s plenty of signage. But for you, dear reader, gentle reader, the moment of dread realization is probably still on its way. Maybe you’ll figure it out seconds after reading the headline at the top of this page. Maybe it’ll take you days, or even years. But in every cosmology humans have ever dreamed up, there’s only one place where anyone would be expected to read, hear, utter, or even think the words “Elon Musk Releases a Surprise Rap Song About Harambe the Cincinnati Zoo Gorilla,” and that place is not heaven. Musk announced the news on Twitter, the official website of eternal torment:
You can listen to Musk’s song, “RIP Harambe,” right here, if that’s something you want to do for some reason:
At the Getty Museum in Los Angeles hangs James Ensor’s extraordinary painting “Christ’s Entry Into Brussels in 1889.” It’s a chaotic sea of horrible people in carnival masks marching straight toward the viewer, all bulging eyes, ghastly smiles, and colors so garish the mind recoils. Ensor’s canvas is enormous—eight by 14 feet—and in person it can be completely overwhelming. I bring this up not because there’s any connection between James Ensor and Elon Musk’s Harambe song, and definitely not because I think anyone will find solace or peace in the painting: it’s a horrorshow. But sometimes—particularly when Elon Musk has just released a surprise rap song about Harambe the Cincinnati Zoo gorilla—it can be reassuring to know that other people in history have come to the same realization about exactly where we are in the universe. RIP Harambe—you’re in a better place now.