Hip Hop

‘Broke Rappers.’ I Don’t Do Free Shoots. Period.

No if’s. No and’s. No but’s.

Oh boy. The relationship between ‘broke rappers’ and actual broke video producers.

Or producers of any kind. Graphic designers. Web designers. Engineers. We’ve all had a run-in with a selectively cheap artist that brags about their lavish lives in their music. Then turns around and low-balls you for your services. ‘Broke rappers’ are usually not broke at all. Just dudes with f*cked up priorities and no respect for artistry. And an over-inflated sense of self.

Tell them to kick rocks. They probably won’t do it while they wear their new Balenciaga’s.

Sure there are genuinely starving artists that will actually barter some of their services for yours. And there’s nothing wrong with respectfully admitting, “this isn’t something I can afford right now. Hope to work with you in the future!” and keep it moving.

But.

See what we’re not going to tolerate is someone devaluing our work and saying “can you lower the price” just because. A friend-of-a-friend discount.

I can’t walk into Best Buy and use an Instagram shout-out as a form of currency to buy a camera. So what makes you think you can pay someone in exposure for a skill that took a lot of time and money to develop?

Let’s take a step back. There are actual broke rappers.

Working video in Hip Hop is an interesting beast different from weddings, commercial, or film work. Probably the most fun you’ll have as a creator. Oftentimes gigs that are most fun tend to pay less. Especially in a genre that is literally the voice of the underprivileged. Artists turn to Hip Hop to express socio-economic hardship. They will make music by any means necessary. And sometimes being resourceful means hustling others into doing free work for them. I come from a place where my friends would pool money together from their 9-5 jobs and invest in an entry-level DSLR camera. Then just shoot it themselves. We didn’t even know what ISO was. We were just dedicated to learning by experience and doing what we could. But we definitely weren’t contacting professional-level producers that we knew had high rates to try to lower their prices… especially not offering to pay them in “exposure.”

Producers aren’t charging you these prices because they want to scam you. They do it because its how they keep the lights on. It’s how they’re able to afford to maintain their equipment and keep doing what they do. Video is especially important in boosting a music career. No one will take you seriously if you invest thousands in looking good or even on hours of studio time but won’t invest in the visuals. If you really can’t afford to pay a professional, study the craft and do it yourself. Don’t burn bridges by disrespecting the value of other artists.

How We Made a Film in 7 Days

Watch how we made a “The Initiate” in 7 days.

Join Almonte, Tim Hann, Jinzo & Blaze in a discussion on making a film with an extremely short deadline.

This was mostly for the sake of an experimental challenge to test our passion for the arts. You should definitely spend more than 7 days on any piece. As with any painting, some films will take years to just write. Some written in 10 minutes. Time spent doesn’t equate to the quality of the work. The passion and how connected you feel to the piece is what determines the impact of the film. Think of this like a speed painting you see a starving artist performing in the streets. That’s right. Performing. There’s two stories happening.

  • The fabricated one that is being shot from a script.
  • The struggle of the creators on the journey to create a film.

The Beginning

I was conflicted on whether I should make a CreepyPasta about how I got robbed in East Harlem or making a hood, gang initiation film. But a third idea emerged in my mind spontaneously on the 24th of October.

What the hell is a Creepypasta?

‘CreepyPasta’ is a style of horror storytelling that usually revolves around urban legends you can find online that people narrate in Youtube mini audio-books. It derives from “Copypasta” which are viral text walls people copy-and-paste everywhere to avoid misfortune. The earliest form of this was chain letters–which precedes the internet. People would get anonymous letters in the mail saying, “Send this to 5 addresses or [insert bad thing] will happen to you.” Here’s an example of an online version:

What if these actually came true for people that did harm to others? Oftentimes we see horror films placed in suburban or rural countrysides. So I stuck to what I know best: the hood. A horror story revolving around inner city kids where the stalking robber– the one who was the initial source of the horror in ACT I and ACT II– was now victimized by a personification of his own guilt.

Jaquan the Hood Lantern.

Spoiler Alert: Jaquan turns Jojo the slasher’s brains into a chopped cheese in the end credits. And the film is punctuated by a voice-over of a Valley-Girl accented Becky saying “Wow only 4 dollars? That’s a steal.” Followed by Chad’s “I know right; I love this neighborhood.” A cute nod to the open-endedness that the horror of gentrification that Almonte has spoken about in his viral chopped cheese video.


Shooting a Film in 7 Days is nerve wrecking.

In fact I wouldn’t recommend anyone do this to their mental health.

I finally wrote an idea that I connected with on a very personal level. But Halloween was in 7 days. Day of the Dead was in 8 days. How the hell was I going to get the cast and crew to pull this off? The same way I pulled off my guerrilla style of shooting My Way. My first attempt at filmmaking with no experience in fight choreography or serious camera work. Except now I’m exponentially more skilled than I was when I was 16. There was no way I was going to let this idea taunt me for another year while I waited for Halloween of 2018 to come back around. By then I would have built even more film ideas and just abandoned the Initiate. I was tired of waiting and planning and not executing all these ideas that kept coming to mind.

There’s only one way to shoot a film in 7 days: Just do it.

Call your folks. Even if they’re not “real” actors. A great director and editor can make anyone look good. I wrote, directed/shot, & edited this. And for the first time, I produced video content that didn’t involve the marketing of my face.

Though I did play the Jaquan the Lantern. Shhh.

I was essentially a one-man crew. The support and patience I got from my cast was imperative. Including emotional support when I wanted to give up on this and try next year.  You are your own worst critic. Finding countless mistakes in audio, continuity errors, and etc. can be disheartening if you don’t have anyone to get you out of your artistic anxiety. Being a perfectionist doesn’t get anything finished.

 

Jinzo Hits Every Beat

Watch how Jinzo kills this remix to this famous Hip Hop Tutorial Video that became a meme.

Jinzo kills it–per usual. But he makes sure to take it back to his popping roots to show you he never misses a beat.

A Real Life Water Bender (Blaze Yentruoc – Told You Dance Video)

Watch the Blaze Yentruoc Dance Video from Jojo– the star of Almonte’s “The Initiate.”

Almonte recently teamed up with the multi-faceted star of his short film, The Initiate to shoot a freestyle dance video to MELLDU’s “Told You.” The song paints a picture of a modern cowboy walking in a cold food-desert of Harlem to confront all that ever doubted him. The climactic face-off is with his biggest competitor. Himself.

The nature of how this video was shot embodies the vibe of this song. In every take of the Blaze Yentruoc Dance Video, he attempted to best himself after watching the footage over and over. And Over. In the freezing cold. His movements more dynamic with every fleeting minute. Physically fighting to abstain the heat from leaving his body. Blaze’s freeform movements are like something out of a Mortal Kombat Kata sequence. Even finger tuts that looked like waterbending.

Blaze takes the song where his heart wants to take it. The raw passion accentuates every beat of the song’s pulse. As if the beat was dancing to Blaze’s body, as opposed to the converse.

Follow him at @sain0ne

 

 

Rise — Boy to King — A Short Story

A King’s conquest for power is interrupted by a boy who looks oddly familiar in this hood creepypasta.

Almonte’s short narrative comes to life with this online audio book. A prequel to “Wack Nikkkas.”

Here’s the transcript:

Hood Creepypasta 1

1      Aight bussit… Per usual, I casually wait for some wealthy settler to pull up off the Metro lackin. A concert at Ward’s Island finished days ago. The hood is a pitstop these ravers gotta take to get to their little events there. So unless there’s some type of event goin on, aint no 12 around here to give them white hipsters and bourgeois niggas somethin to hide behind when them crackheads askin for change… so traffic is type slow. This the perfect time for a come-up since the block aint hot. Any new nigga pull up? It’s gon be just me and him. Lit. So why I see this lil nigga in a fuckin onesie by himself across the platform? First of all, obviously ya pops aint in ya life. My pops never had me wearin some faggot ass onesie. This lil nigga was not no 3 years old. This was a big ass kid. I aint even know they make onesie’s that size. I gotta get rid of this nigga cause he fuckin up my flow and I’m trynna get this comeup. I aint trynna have no extra eyes on my work.
~

2      An hour passes with no trains passin by and this pink panther lookin ass nigga aint gettin on none of these shits. You don’t wanna make a nigga uncomfortable. Promise you. As I cross over, what I thought was a teddy bear in his hand is actually some ugly ass gremlin lookin shit up close. That shit look type softer than a teddy bear though, not even gonna hold you.

“Yerr…” He don’t turn around. Smart lil nigga must be from around here.

~

3      I pull up where he can see me.

“What’s good, bro? Lemme holla at you real quick.” His eyes gaze up without pullin away. Ha. Nigga sad. His eyes tell a story. Not them fearful puppy eyes. It was them eyes from the same dog four years later after his owners hit the lotto and abandoned him in the hood. Sad– yeah — but no fear where there’s nothin to lose.

“You good?”

“Yeah I’m good. You good?” he gettin smart.

“You aint gotta be defensive, I aint trynna press you or nothin. I just see you out here by yaself lookin frantic and shit. ”

“I’m waitin for the train.”
“Don’t you think if ya train was comin it woulda been here by now? You been out here for an hour and a half. ”

“How you know I been out here for an hour and a half?”

“Cause I’m waitin for a train too. I got business to do.”

“We just might be waitin for the same train sir. It’s comin”

“My train comin. But I heard trains on this side aint runnin today.”
“I gotta get home.”
“You sound like you from here.”
“I am, but this aint my home.”

“Haha. Once you from Harlem, this don’t stop bein ya home. Don’t get Hollywood lil nigga. You might as well cop a Telly or some shit. Aint no trains on this side, B. I’m tellin you. You familiar wit the area anyway. You should be aware that lurkin out a lil too late for a lil nigga like you could be lethal. For all you know I coulda been some goon trynna snatch ya pockets and you out here all comfortable and shit.”

~

4      “Aint nothin to get snatched. And you don’t look like a goon to me. I aint scared.”

“That’s what make niggas like me dangerous. Tourists come out here and love an eccentric lightskin nigga like me. They don’t see shit comin. All these darkskin niggas dyin and gettin locked up cause they worried about lookin hard. You lucky I aint one of them goons or I woulda popped on ya pussy ass. I know you aint got shit in ya pockets. You from here. You a popped nigga just like me. You either make this shit ya home–no– make yourself King, or you make yourself the doormat. Aint no in between Heaven and Hell. And you And what’s Hell to Satan if he got his throne? See you? You the product of your environment. You just a bitch ass fallen angel that’s scared to call himself a demon.
~


5      “This the Hood, nigga. So you a hood nigga. And that’s that. I could say all this smart shit, keep it classy, stayin calm and collected with you. But at the end of the day, I’m a hood nigga. And that’s all you ever be even if you do just so happen to be able to catch a train out of here. Leave all you want. The Hood aint ever leavin you. Now, scram nigga. Aint no trains on this side. I’ma keep it one hunnit wit you. I’m waitin for a come up.”

He won’t budge.

~

6     “Nah I’m good. I’ma keep on waitin for this train. I’ma be tight if I leave right now and 5 minutes later I’m down the block hearin the train passin by. Good things come to those who wait. You do you, and I’ma do me. I aint no snitch. But you gon have to kill me before you take me off this strip.”  Niggas go hard for the most unrewardin shit. Some little niggas just never learn. Fuck it.

~

7      Lo and behold just 10 minutes later I feel a gust of wind crescendo across my face. The bats finally shriek for the first time in decades. Their voices drown in the blinding roars of the headlights. He still got them eyes. A dog lost in a cave finally seein his way out.

“Looks like ya ride out the cave is here fam.”

This hour and a half felt like my whole life waitin to eat. Cause it was.

The train stops. The few-second delay between the train stoppin and the doors slidin open seem like forever. Cause it is.

~


8      “The train is out of service.” He holds back tears. The doors never open

“Sorry kid. This train aint meant for you.”

Watchin the sun set against the train’s reflective canvas was like watchin a drop of blood fade on a cube of ice.

“You such a goon. Let’s hijack this train,” he challengin me.

“Haha a King knows how to pick his battles. Like I said. This train aint for you. And even if it was, you get off that train the same nigga you was when you got on.”

~


9      “Be safe, young blood. Welcome Home. You a bold nigga. Don’t lose sight of the light… But you gotta survive before you revolutionize.”

 

Photography by @Call_Me_CJ (Craig Steely Jr.)

Let’s Talk About Lil Uzi Gay Mannerisms…

What exactly makes Lil Uzi gay to so many Black men?

As the group that dominates Hip Hop, we need to self-critique our perspective of these new rappers. Not just whether we are right or wrong. We need to ask; where is this judgement coming from? What are the subjective biases we grow up with that make us look at someone and say, “na man. That looks sus. Lil Uzi gay.”

Why do certain things turn us off? You could just say “well I prefer my favorite rappers to look masculine” and leave it at that. But we have been taught to like half of what we like. Not everything we think is “natural” is truly organic. Our preferences are socialized. Men are taught since birth to “man up” at any remote sign of emotion by family. The news gives us a hyper-representation of Black criminality. Mainstream music & film glorifies a lifestyle of promiscuity, violence, and aggression as defining traits of Black masculinity. It’s ironic that there are so many men with a hand in the media yet masculine-presenting men have such a one-dimensional TV presence. No one wants to break the cycle. The moment a man goes against what we normally see, us men get naturally insecure in the box we’ve been comfortably living in.

That’s sus.

That looks gay.

That’s fruity.

Let’s define gayness for a second. Attraction to the same gender. Sexuality doesn’t have a look. Cool. We know this. Yet that all goes out the window in everyday practice. A lot of things go out the window in practice. Like knowing that cheating is bad. Stealing is wrong. That you should floss after every single meal.

But here’s the thing. There is a gay look. A straight look. There shouldn’t be. But there is.

There’s a reason why straight men get called “f*ggots” for doing “unmanly” things as we previously mentioned. Anything outside of a man being dominant and a woman being submissive pretty much gets thrown in the gay box. 

The capitalist protection of the monogamous white family has us conflating gender identity with expression and with sexuality. Yet so many white male models get away with expressing femininity without feeling like their manhood is threatened. Even openly speaking about being straight and being attracted to trans women.

I’ll give you a hint.

White men have nothing to be insecure about when they have solid, objective government power. Many ankh-right, hoteps, Black capitalists & nationalists… do not seek equality justice even among their own people. They seek power. They seek to replace white patriarchy with Black patriarchy. This hierarchy is expressed in more overt homophobia, transphobia, misogyny, classism, and every -ism outside of racism. When you are oppressed in one way, it is easy to latch onto the other -isms for a leverage of power in your own community.

Low-income whites blame those filthy immigrants for stealing all their jobs.

Black men blame the ‘gay agenda’ and Black feminists for ruining their progression.

Hip Hop is the cultural expression of the hood. Thus, the fight for power using masculine dominance is emphasized. The hierarchy straight Black men control is less secure and more violent. Being simultaneous victims and oppressors of their own people. White patriarchy is much more institutional. Social bigotry doesn’t need to be as blatant to maintain its power.

So who cares if it looks gay anyway?

The fact that a lot of ‘new age rappers’ are coming about wear tight jeans, chokers, makeup and come out of their shell to speak about “soft sh*t” is a GOOD thing. It expands hip hop’s masculine spirit to leave the one-dimensional definitions behind.

The commercialization of Black aggression has made Hip Hop a branded cash cow spitting out the same “look” for ages. Perpetuating the same dangerous hierarchy we already have in urban culture. It’s about time we see new steps in fashion and gender expression and still recognize artists as a man simply expressing themselves differently.

Rappers Drinking Pepto Bismol At The Club is Now a Thing

It was only a matter of time before rappers drinking Pepto Bismol in music videos became a thing.
Why tho?

I guess shitting on niggas gets tiring after a while.

Sometimes you realize you’ve been flexing entirely too much. So you have to get your hands on that pink drink to stop yourself from indulging in consumerist behavior and shitting on everyone less iced out than you are I suppose. Rappers drinking Pepto Bismol at the club is the new wave.

@TimHannRivera really killed it. It even got nominated Best Sketch Comedy at the Official Latino Film Festival. 

Here’s the Lyrics:

Sippin on that pink drink,
Got my stomach moving slow,
Sip it with a gingy,
Mix it with that combo,
Finish till it’s empty,
Think I might need one more,
Got me feeling sweaty,
Hope I make it to my show
Sippin on that pink drink,
Hope my shit don’t stink,
Popped a pill and it’s pink
Too late to rethink
Cus now I gotta go gotta go gotta go gotta go
Niggas see me with the hoes
can’t feel me toes
now I’m froze can’t move
got shit on my shoe
got Shawty saying what are those
I suppose fucked up my clothes
that’s how it goes when you
order out and get a three topping pizza at dominoes,
Gotta pop another pill,
cus mothafuckas is too trill,
drink a bit of gingerale,
boutta get that peptobismol refill
Sippin on that pink drink,
Got my stomach moving slow,
Sip it with a gingy,
Mix it with that combo,
Finish till it’s empty,
Think I might need one more,
Got me feeling sweaty,
Hope I make it to my show
12:28 I’m tryna get this drank,
Haven’t ate nothing but a fuckin frank,
Debit card not working gotta run to the bank,
Sharted in my pants shits about to stank,
Ima street nigga fuck you talking bout,
wanna order wings but I’m having doubts,
Ayo Bandage don’t do it man you’re butthole gonna feel like a drout,
Nigga fuck all that other shit I’m ready to check out,
I just got me two piece chicken wings,
Ima street nigga I can do these things,
once I took a bite my fuckin stomach dropped,
these mothafuckin wings made my heart stop,
gotta find me a drug store,
anything that sells that peptobismol,
Ima street nigga y’all already know,
but these wings boutta make my stomach blow…
Sippin on that pink drink,
Got my stomach moving slow,
Sip it with a gingy,
Mix it with that combo,
Finish till it’s empty,
Think I might need one more,
Got me feeling sweaty,
Hope I make it to my show

 

Watch This Ridiculous A Boogie Parody ft. Metro Boomin

This A Boogie Parody Lowkey SLAPS.

Probably not as much as an actual Metro Boomin track. But good enough for Almonte playing B Boogie and @CallMeJinzo playing Metro Swipin for A Boogie Parody.

Everyone knows A Boogie wit Da Hoodie can make a catchy cadence. And let’s not forget how relateable his romantic tragedies are for a lot of youth living in the ghetto. But what often goes overlooked is his lyrical capabilities as a writer. For instance, in his melancholic “D.T.B.” he says:

“I know what a ten is, you not Serena.”

Allusion, or referencing, is a literary device used by many Hip Hop artists. Jazz artists have done it by playing melodies from famous or popular songs. They’re not meant to be caught by everyone. But if you’re one of the lucky ones, it’s like finding out your favorite celebrity has the same birthday as you. A Boogie is talking about Serena Williams here– or at least we think he is. For all we know, he could be talking about an Instagram baddie who’s name just so happens to be Serena. Maybe I’m biased because I think Selena Williams defines beauty.  To eliminate this confusion, A boogie plugs another literary device in there– Pun. 

“I know what I ten is…”

Ten is.

Tennis.

Reach?

Maybe.

When people think of A boogie they think someone that’s going to put them in their bag. Someone to make them feel raw, unadulterated emotion. No one really looks for technical rapping skill especially since he goes with a melodic, catchy style of rapping. Yet hearing a song on repeat might make you double-take on some of those multi-syllabic rhyme schemes. And he isn’t afraid of getting too on-the-nose with it in “Timeless”:

“2 seater Bentley and it’s topless
And she’s topless, naked bitch driver”

The melody gives a familiarity when you hear two homophones. Words that sound the same but mean two different things.

“We went from chillin’ in the projects to makin projects.” -Drowning

I felt the same munchies A Boogie felt while he wrote Quiet Storm freestyle. He describes his hunger for success by using hood jargon named after the components of a sandwich:

“So I started flipping onions just so I could get my bread up
But now I’m going ham in the building
Cause they ain’t let us
Saying fuck the mozzarella
Cause nigga I wanted cheddar
My heart colder than a case of beers in the freezer
This is how you niggas made me though.”

Some of these can be kind of hit or miss. Sometimes I find myself saying “Ooo that was hard” but most times it feels like comic relief. It’s fun. It’s relateable. And pretty clever without trying to hard to be. The fact that A Boogie has no issue speaking of emotional vulnerability in his songs doesn’t feel like a lot of hyper-masculine rappers we are used to seeing get big trying to come up with the hardest most off-the-wall line they could possibly create. The melody makes it seemless and not too jarring even if a line may fall flat for many people.

So.

This A Boogie parody pays tribute to how fun and ridiculous you can get with this. Complete with the whole using-“b*tch”-as-a-syllable-filler-to-confetti-your-song-style you see in Timeless.
And the saturated 808’s in this instrumental:

Here’s the lyrics:
Shorties think im autistic
I’m just artistic
Why you think they call me Artis
look what Artis did
They recognize me at Popeyes, yeah I pop eyes.
Ima hit you wit the nightstick
I got a nice dick
We used to smoke in the family Garden
Now I perform at the garden my family got in
Try to crash my VIP Ima let the guards in
Nigga who you think you guardin, I ain’t harden
Bitches need to hold up
But What’s the hold up ?
Niggas walk up in the club
Like this a hold up
Bitches know that Im a god Nigga you angel
get them Lights camera action,
Get them angles
Bitch How can you not see
That That’s a nazi
Man how could you hate Jews
I really hate chu
I be Furrowin my Eyebrows
While I Browse
We tried to eat Lettuce
Niggas won’t let us
How can I be vegan
Where do I begin?
Cheating at the hotel
Don’t let that hoe tell
These Butt hurt niggas gon need some bengay
Stressing me about my nails cause they really been gay
The avatar is angry
Cause I sucked aangs meat.
Yeah we in the drive thru
You know we drive through
Why you think they outchea?
cause they take out chairs.
Used to sleep in the living room
We don’t live in rooms
You know I’m eating Reese’s while I’m at recess
He said meet me at high bridge
Damn that’s a high bridge
What’s my occupation she steady Askin
I’m a lumberjack so I put that axe in
I’m a Harlem nigga
Said she like my accent
Said she like my melody
With staccato accents
I know you be lyin cause you a lion
I knew asked you for some water but you threw some lime in
You said you like the way I rap
When I be rhymin
But you gave me some Udon I asked for Ramen
Bitch You a fuckin omen
Nigga amen
Bitch You look just like a cheetah
Yeah you a cheater
Giving head up on my rooftop
You know that’s roof top
How could you tell me that’s not seed in you
Stupid fat bitch Man i could see it in you
Yeah I Used to work at Payless you know so I Pay less
Now You better have a PayPal or you gonna pay pal
Yeah she call me daddy I’m babysitting
She suck me like a bottle while my baby sittin
Now I’m Listening to my shit
While taking my shit
And if it’s a Sunday I eat a sundae
I be off on the weekends when the week ends
If you hungry with a stomachache, don’t let ya stomach ache
Recorded all my solos but it was so low
SHE SAID SHE WANT A CELL PHONE SO NOW SHE SELL PHONES
Take you to another planet we better plan it
When I need the right aid I go to Rite Aid
If you want the ketchup you better catch up
See a kid napping then kidnap him.
She say she want a hitter til I hit her.
She passed out when I farted that’s what my fart did.
She said she had a good night I told her goodnight
gay niggas drinking fruit punch yeah that fruit punch
Yeah I spank my mans buns
And pull his manbun
Had some chocolate in his latte,that’s chocolate
Niggas often say sometimes I’m Corny
Turn a nigga to a vegetable so he corny
Leave you in the hospital when I see you
Leave you in a coma in ICU.

When a New Yorker Leaves the Hood

Let’s face it. When your friend leaves the hood, it’s a bitter-sweet spectacle.

Many in the hood want to obtain absurd amounts of wealth to buy all the luxury clothing that will juxtapose their habitat. To flaunt the audacity to walk in urban decadence with the new Ghost Whites on their feet and a gold chain pounding no fear on their heart with every step. In the Hood, you look good;  you feel good. The ‘Hood Rich’ mentality is one of consumerism– the idea that you are what you wear. We place value on ourselves based on the things we can afford to buy.
But there’s a catch.
You can’t keep that title if you leave the Hood. Because we simultaneously worship wealth while romanticizing “the struggle.” The struggle of surviving in a dangerous environment… of living paycheck to paycheck… of eating hypertension-inducing instant ramen noodles everyday… of having to sell drugs, sell ass, or both when no one wants to hire you. So when you finally escape this social prison, your childhood friends are bound to feel resentment.

Society has been engineered to keep you poor. So if you’re lucky enough to be granted the right opportunities to leave, chances are your friends are not going with you. Your friends may blame you for not being able to take them with you. Maybe even blame themselves even if they work harder than you. We continue to look at each other and point the finger at everyone. Everyone but the warden and his guards that turn a blind eye to your implosion. The cold truth: the system was designed this way.

How do we cope when the people we love can’t leave the hood?

We celebrate with the hood. Party with the hood. Feed the hood. We treat them like charity cases to cope with the guilt of our success. Because in a way, these are the people that have contributed to who we are and what we’ve become. They deserve more than what you can give them and you know it. But we know damn well everyone can’t fit on the life boat while the titanic sinks. Otherwise, you’ll all drown. And capitalism has taught us that suffering is all worth it as long as one of us makes it. The ones that “make it” become the new-money Gatsby to absolve their guilt. After the entourage, they indulge in their new lavish lifestyle alone while their friends go back to the hood to tell braggadocios stories of their old friend that came back to the Hood to share a taste of his newly found wealth.

And Chopped Cheese.

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