Fried Chicken managed to pull together a decent weave last night for a change. How sad is it that this happens with such infrequency, we almost feel compelled to compliment her when it’s not falling out in clumps at the back of her head?

It’s not just snark. In many ways, the weave, and whether or not she’s able to keep that sh-t clean, is a reflection of our lowered expectations. Did you actually think Britney would take the stage last night and impress you? We watched exactly what we were told we would be watching which was Britney watching the best of herself being honoured by other people, at only 29 years old.

On a night when Lady Gaga opened, when Adele soared, when Jessie J sang almost every song better than the original, what could Britney, the one we know now, possibly bring in juxtaposition? In juxtaposition to the aforementioned artists, yes, but also in juxtaposition to her old self?

You know how they always say in golf that it would have been awesome for Jack Nicklaus at his peak to go head to head with Tiger Woods at his peak? That’s an impossible challenge, obviously. Britney and Beyonce were both born in 1981. Slave 4U dropped 2 years before Crazy In Love. Vocal ability aside, I repeat, VOCAL ABILITY ASIDE, for the benefit of you eager debaters, on stage presence, that would have been quite a showdown. And we don’t need a time machine to make that happen. But we do need Britney to engage.

Britney did not and WILL NOT engage. Britney, instead, has conceded. Which is why her lame ass tribute turned into an introduction to the Throne Watch happening inside Beyonce’s belly. Don’t blame MTV for this. And don’t blame Beyonce for it either. It could never have gone ahead without Britney’s express consent. This was a choice SHE made. Or that they made for her. That’s actually the same thing these days. And I have to believe it was a deliberate decision. To send what’s looking like a rather final message. That she long ago accepted that she cannot keep up. That what was will never be again. And that now, stop looking at the old videos, stop spending hours on YouTube digging up the old clips, stop asking her to be excellent, stop refusing to settle for a weave that isn’t falling out, it’s time for us to accept it too.

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