A White Winter


I've enjoyed hip hop music for a very long time. I'm not sure exactly what attracts me to it. It could be the clever wordplay, the ego, or the beats. They're all good. I love the verbal theatrics by the likes of Aesop Rock, Busdriver and Blackalicious just as much as I like hearing Rick Ross owning three dozen cars and Lil' Jon yell about skeeting in everything that rhymes with "skeet skeet".

I like working out to rap, although I try and keep that on the down-low at the gym that I'm trying to motivate my next leg press by listening to Dr. Dre rhyme about growing weed and being a real O.G. I also like writing perl scripts to rap, the other day I automated the generation of several control scripts listening to the new Wacka Flocka Flame.... It was very white... Oh God. I really don't know how to listen to hip-hop. But despite its regularly questionable lyrical content I still keep listening to it.

This Winter now gone I discovered two great sources of entertainment. One was The Wire, one of the greatest television shows ever made. The other was The Rub's History of Hip Hop free mixtapes. One mix for each year of hip hop the past few decades. And all of a sudden, as I consumed the two, some hip hop tracks started making a lot more sense. Like, that's what a re-up is. And what the Five-Oh are. It was quite enlightening. I really felt started feeling as immersed into the culture as a white Australian guy who experienced the culture almost solely through television could feel. I started referring to hats as "crowns", and said "you feel me" a bit more than usual.

If you have any like of hip hop, I highly recommend The Rub mixtapes. If you like television I suggest you watch The Wire. Binge on it for a week, if you have a chance. And see if you come out speaking Ebonics.

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