Today is Kanye West’s 40th birthday — officially proving that he is really toeing the line by calling himself a millennial. But that has not stopped the rapper, producer, fashion designer, husband to thee Kim Kardashian, and father to two of the cutest celebrity kids, ever, from influencing a generation of people much younger than him. Needless to say, the producer from Chicago — who recorded his debut single with his jaw wired shut after a near-fatal car accident — has quite a bit to smile about.
But as we all know, he rarely does. To catch Kanye smiling is like spotting Beyoncé at the BET Awards. It might happen every once in awhile, but it’s not likely. Unlike other celebrities who inspire us with infectious positivity, like John Legend and Chrissy Teigen, West is known for his passionate rants against a closed-minded society that doesn’t believe enough in art or in its youth. When he gets going, it’s no laughing matter.
Yeezy’s absent smile is just as iconic as his Adidas kicks, and has become a pop culture legend in its own right. According to his now-defunct Twitter, not smiling makes Kanye smile. And his wife insists that showing off your pearly whites causes wrinkles. But they’re both human, and sometimes you just can’t help yourself.
I’ve rounded up a few of those random outbursts of joy to celebrate another year in Kanye's life. Even though we probably won’t see it, I hope he smiles a lot today.