Hustle and Flow


NickOtani

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Most of us recognize that we are observing a different culture, the Memphis Black scene. Words like “Bitch” and “Ho” are just second nature to them, and the “F” word is spread all over. Nobody gets shocked by it.

I have known Black people from Memphis, but the current culture is different than what it was ten years ago. As soon as we get to the point where we understand the slang, it has to change. It’s an unwritten law.

Still, even if we have to strain, which is good for us, it isn’t hard to recognize that this guy is struggling and has a dream. As different as he is from us, we can identify with him. I can write my own rap song with a hook like “It’s hard out there for a sub, someone students will take advantage of.” I hustle too, in my own way.

And, when I saw that Skinny Black (Ludacris) threw DJay’s tape into the toilet, it reminded me of John Steinbeck’s short story “The Chrysanthemums.” What some of us value with all our might, others consider garbage. It’s a cold truth.

I liked how the White girl took on responsibility and found her skills at marketing the tapes at the radio stations. It was redemption for her. She found she could be more than poor white trash.

Still, I don’t put rap music on the same qualitative level as the music of Mozart. After watching Amadeus, I remarked that his music was a long way from “It’s Hard Out There for a Pimp.” And I still think that is true.

Bis bald,

Nick

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