Dear Mr. Frank Ocean,
Perhaps we’ll spend our entire lives praying to you. You give us so much, yet prefer to stay as shadowed and inscrutable as the new moon. Blonde is a masterpiece, yet Endless, the tantalizing glimpse that came before, may be your essence in its purest form. Perhaps that’s why you see fit to keep its vinyl release a phantom, a mirage that will never truly be attained. And you know what? I can see the beauty in such methods, Frank. They say life is about the journey, not the destination. In this case, though, the journey sucks ass.
Frank, let me tell you my story. I ordered your stair-building opus on November 27, 2017. An email address credited to your name sent me the wonderful confirmation. That email was like I’d received an ultrasound of my first child and you were the father. But that joy also hid a promise, one that you would do well to remember. I am just one of many angry fans who, appropriately, have been waiting endlessly for Endless. We don’t have a name, but I’d imagine it’d be something cool. Something with the word “Legion” in it. Anyways, we’re very pissed off that, apparently, there is “no estimated time frame” for the vinyl shipment according to Pitchfork. That hurts, Frank, and I’ll show you why.
Do you see that, Frank? 6 to 8 weeks. Let me tell you how long it’s been since then, in case you forgot. In the nearly three whole months after Endless gracefully leeched 54 dollars from my credit card, we had both the Grammys and the Golden Globes. We had an entire Olympic Games. Superhero movies are cool now. We’re ever closer to a very, very hot planet. The world changed, Frank, but your album still isn’t here in my arms. I called, I wrote emails. Nothing. Where are you? Are you even real? Did I just imagine the Endless vinyl? Have I been chasing a dream?
I can’t fathom as to why you’d do this me specifically, let alone why it would happen to the others who also love you. Endless, the Riku to Blonde’s Sora (I assume you’ve played Kingdom Hearts), posits that life is a continuous loop filled with turmoil and expectation. I can only surmise that this is what you want to tell me, Frank. The ongoing artistic trials of Endless have not ended, much like how when Gon Freecss and the rest of the cast of the anime Hunter X Hunter thought that they were finished the Hunter Exam upon receiving their licenses, only to discover that the true exam was still to come thanks to the challenges posed by the Zoldyck family of assassins. Sisyphus rolls his boulder up and down a hill for eternity, correct? I am Sisyphus, and Endless is the boulder. Let me tell you furthermore of Tantalus, who will forever attempt to drink water that swims from his lips and eat grapes that swing out of his grasp. The metaphor there is clear enough, I hope.
Once again: life is about the journey, not the destination, but humans are designed to try to find meaning in the end so whoever said this is kind of dumb. You, Frank, you may be operating on a level higher than any of us can comprehend. Maybe it’s those stairs you built so long ago. Perhaps the Endless vinyl is up there, a place we can only remember but not actually travel to. Did I buy hope that day, Frank? Did I spend my hard-earned money on a mere concept?! I wouldn’t put it past you. ‘“All sales are final. No returns or exchanges.” That’s what you wrote in that email. I wish I could exchange the time I’ve spent waiting for this damned LP. I can wait no longer. From the depths of my broken soul, I beg you, Frank: ship the Endless vinyl and end this misery. I can only show so much support. Love isn’t endless, Frank, and neither are my funds.
Phil is an angry riptide. Follow him on Twitter.
This article originally appeared on Noisey CA.