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Tag Archives: Kanye West

Friendly Reminder: Don’t Get Caught

Hello, thREADERS! Just wanted to give y’all a friendly reminder that, whenever you KNOW all eyes are on you, or even when you think no one is watching you… always buckle up and be careful not to get caught with your pants down.

You don’t want to be this guy. Okay, well, maybe you do, but not like this.

"... Till I get flashed by the paparazzi/ Damn, these niggas got me!" - Flashing Lights

 

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Thirteen Thursday Thoughts

“To making it count…”

Movies

Just as I finished digesting the news of Whitney Houston’s toxicology reports, TriStar released the trailer for Sparkle (1), starring Whitney Houston, Mike Epps, Derek Luke, Cee-Lo (2) (more on him later), and Jordin Sparks. I realize that this is a remake, but I’m really excited about it, and I have high hopes for it. I’m going to see it, if for no other reason than to see Whitney and hear her angelic voice one more time. 

Music

I finally got to see The Hunger Games, and I loved it! It wasn’t as good as the book, but what movie is ever as good as the book that precedes it? I felt that the movie did it justice, and I’m excited to start reading Catching Fire. Since I’m on the topic, Lenny Kravitz (2) as Cinna just might have been my favorite character outside of Katniss. I loved Rue, too. I won’t spoil the plot for those who have yet to read the book or see the movie, but I will say that he added a serenity to the movie, and he nailed his role. I’m glad to see that Helen, I mean Roxie Roker (3) passed some acting skills down to her son. Movin’ on up…here’s a list of my 5 favorite Lenny Kravitz songs.

  1. “Little Girl’s Eyes” (duh…)
  2. “Fly Away”
  3. “Again”
  4. “I Belong to You”
  5. “I’ll Be Waiting”

Kanye West (4) made the news again this week for his song, “Theraflu”, where he admits to falling in love with Kim Kardashian, throws his respect for Wiz Khalifa, and well…here:

“And I’ll admit, I fell in love with Kim, ’round the same time she had fell in love with him, well, that’s cool, baby girl, do ya thing, lucky I ain’t have Jay drop him from the team,”

I think Kanye is disturbed in all honesty. I’ve thought something was off ever since 808’s & Heartbreak. His “Runaway” video was the icing on the cake for me (even though I loved it). Fellow Threader, Terry the Trainer, eloquently nails my sentiments with this gem:

“Kanye’s new song reminds me of how badly I do NOT. WANT. FAME. Ever. Falling in love with Kim K while she falls in love with the dude she marries on your watch, just to dump him two months later, and leave you feeling empty…Now one ex is with an inferior rap guy (Wiz) and another ex is over you, overpaid, and thanks to your own big mouth, over-publicized as you openly admit defeat to an NBA guy who is as famous as he has recently become…Because of your ex. At a certain point, you are so celebrated, you just chase what (and who) is celebrated. You forget what you once were and what type of company you once pursued. I feel sorry for that in a way at the same time. You CAN’T be normal anymore.”

I couldn’t have said it better myself. “The Queen of Hip-Hop Soul” (5) found her way into my “Thirteen Thoughts”…again. By now, you’ve probably seen, heard, or heard about the now infamous Burger King commercial that has her looking like Catwoman on a table singing about crispy chicken, fresh lettuce, an assortment of cheeses, and ranch dressing. I suppose her days of drama, real love, goin’ down, and breaking through are over. utpipeline gave us a classic post yesterday, so I’ll just leave this subject with that. *walks away* *looks back* *shakes head* *continues walking* Mary, Mary, Mary, Mary, Mary… *sigh*

Cee-Lo (6) is quickly becoming another all-star on my Thoughts, but I’m not happy with him at the moment. A few weeks ago, Cee-Lo performed the unedited version of his hit single, “F*** You” at a fundraiser for President Obama, which was hosted by Tyler Perry (6) (more on him in a second). Dammit, Cee-Lo, you can’t do that!!! My people, my people…while I’m sure this is a popular sentiment directed at several of Obama’s opponents, it will certainly not help get the President reelected. *slightly head-bops*

Radio Show

Thread Radio is off and rolling now, and we’ll keep it chugging next as we talk about Tyler Perry (7). He has been the subject of several debates over on the Thread, so we figured we’d bring it to the public. So many people love him; so many people hate him. Is he good for black entertainment or is he bad for it? However, you feel, be sure to tune in Monday night at 10 Central at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/threadradio. Here are our first and second shows in case you missed them.

Sports

The Masters started today, and Tiger Woods (8) seems to be an early favorite. Timeout. You mean to tell me that it only took one win after 2 years for people to hop back on Tiger’s bandwagon? That’s it? I’ve watched so many “experts” and “analysts” say that they believe he’ll end up with the green jacket on Sunday. Color me skeptical. Oh, congratulations to Baylor for winning the title in women’s basketball! I got my wish of getting to see Skylar and Brittney Griner (9) square off, but I knew Baylor would prevail. Griner is simply unstoppable. I suppose Baylor Law School (10) was too excited about the win, and pushed some of the wrong buttons. Congratulations to the new class…I suppose.

YouTube

YouTube has done what it always does and provided some great entertainment for people this week.Here’s the 5-year-old comedian who calls out lazy parents (11)

On a Personal Note

I’m not Catholic, but I am a Christian, and I’ve been taking part in a fast in observance of Lent (12). I usually give up all liquids except water, which is also a tribute to my grandmother as she used to do the same thing. I also gave up fast food. Let me just say that this was probably the most challenging fast to get through. It’s not over until Easter, but goodness. I’ve been the awkward guy at the social outing at a bar who asks for water far too many times this past several weeks. All for good reason, but I’m glad it’s almost over. To God be the glory. Finally, it’s been a tough few days for me as tragedy (13) struck entirely too close to home. This guy that I grew up with and went to church with murdered his mother, who also went to church with me. There really isn’t much I can say because it’s such a tragic and heart-wrenching situation, but my thoughts and prayers are with the immediately family and close friends. I wish there was something we could’ve done. We knew the young man was on the wrong path. Maybe we didn’t pray hard enough. Maybe we didn’t reach out to him enough. Maybe we didn’t keep him close enough to us. I don’t know, but my heart is heavy. Let’s take care of each other.

-23

 

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Is College Really Worth It?

I’ve taken the liberty of providing you with a cynical soundtrack while you read.

“…And your mother’s sayin ‘go to college’, so you finish college and it’s wonderful. You feel so good, and after all the partying and crazing and don’t forget about that drug habit you picked up at school being around your peers, hey, now you’ll get that 25 thou job a year…”

First off, congratulations to the recent graduates!  I’ve been putting off writing about this topic because frankly, it depresses me.  For those of you who don’t know me or haven’t quite figured out my identity, I graduated from Texas 3 years ago, worked for 2 years, and am now in grad school pursuing dual-master’s degrees.  As you can imagine, I’m not looking forward to repaying the loans that stand right behind the light at the end of my academic tunnel.  Here at the ThreadBlog, all of us have degrees, advanced degrees, and/or college experience.  Before you congratulate us and marvel at our academic prowess, realize that most of us have mountains of debt we’re either paying or soon will be when we leave the “safe haven” of academia.  If that’s not sobering enough for you, most of us aren’t where we want to be professionally, either.  The fact of the matter is that it’s a new game out here.  The “real world” isn’t our parents’ “real world” anymore.  I’ve had this discussion with my parents on quite a few occasions, and I tell them that their high school diploma is essentially equivalent to my bachelor’s degree.  You know how they say you can’t do much with a high school diploma these days?  That same thing can be said about a bachelor’s degree.  I didn’t have offers waiting for me to sift through after I crossed the stage like my parents did. I had to scratch, claw, and bite my way to a post-undergraduate internship. Of course, a lot of that has to do with one’s field of study and career path, but overall, the job market is so cut-throat these days, and so many people have discovered that they have to keep going educationally to get a leg up on the competition and move further along on their career paths.

“You’ll come in at an entry level position and when you do that, if you kiss enough ass, you’ll move up to the next level, which is being the secretary’s secretary!”

Here are some statistics that I managed to procure for your reading pleasure:
-In July of 2010, the unemployment rate for college graduates was 4.7%, up from 2.8% a year earlier, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
-This is much lower than the 9.4% rate for workers with only a high school diploma
-Two-thirds of bachelor’s degree recipients last year graduated with an average debt of about $23,000, according to Finaid.org
-Total debt for borrowers with graduate or professional degrees ranges from $30,000 to $120,000
-The average salary for recent graduates in 2009 and 2010 was $27,000, down 10 percent from the previous year
-Student debt has topped credit card debt (likely to top $1 trillion this year or about $24,000 a person)
-57% of Americans say that college education is not a good value for the money
-A four year degree costs on average $140,000

That’s enough bad news.  I just wanted to show the facts (college taught me that).  By now, you’re probably thinking that the answer to my initial question is no.  College sucks, is a total waste of an investment, and not worth the mountain of debt that you will surely incur.  Actually, that can’t be any further from the truth.  The thing that many surveys and articles on the topic fail to acknowledge is that college offers a lot that you can’t possibly put a price tag on.  While I admit that I hardly remember a thing from my freshman philosophy class, sophomore economics course, junior management seminar, or senior finance class, the lessons outside of the classroom, experiences, and people I added to my network have helped mold me into the person that I am now.  College is just as much about getting the tools you need to be successful in your career as it is about sharpening the tools you already have to be successful in life.  I met some of my best friends in college.  I met people and experienced things that I never would have if I didn’t undertake that debt and go off to school.  I’ve seen so many places, learned about so many cultures, and opened my mind to so many new things because of college.  There’s no way I can price these because I wouldn’t trade them for the world.  College is the time to try new things (for better or for worse), fall on your face, pick yourself up, build a supporting cast around you, learn something, and enjoy the ride.  Sure, it’s expensive and tiresome, but it makes for 4, 5, or 6 years of the best years in life.

“You keep it going, man; you keep those books rolling. You pick up those books you’re going to read and not remember and you roll, man. You get that associate’s degree, okay. Then you get your bachelor’s.  Then you get your master’s. Then you get your master’s master’s. Then you get your doctrine [sic]. You go, man, then when everybody says quit, you show them those degrees, man.”

The more expensive college gets, the bigger the gap between the educated and uneducated gets.  College was never an option for me because both of my parents are college educated, which I count as a blessing.  I had to go to college.  I realize that not everyone comes from that background.  With that in mind, I always applaud those who are the first in their family to go to college and/or graduate.  It’s a huge investment and a leap of faith, but one that is so rewarding.  Unlike a lot of things in life that we pay for, no one can ever take a college degree away from you once you earn it.  You can outgrow clothes, wreck a car, or lose a house, but a degree is yours and yours forever.  With that said, is college really worth it? Absolutely and without a doubt, yes.

-23

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Posted by on May 27, 2011 in Education

 

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Top 10 of ’10 (1-5)

I know its already 2011, but if Skillz can put out the  2010 Rap-up days after the year ended and call fans spoiled for asking for it earlier, I think we can get away with putting this out a few days late. With that said,  take a second to reflect on the year in music that was by checking out the Top 10 hip-hop albums of 2010! Be sure to comment!

Need a refresher? Albums 6-10 (and honorable mentions) can be found here.

#5: K.R.I.T. Wuz Here (Big K.R.I.T.)

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Posted by on January 4, 2011 in Music

 

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The Future of Music: Part II

Dear Readers… as you all are aware, your favorite writer Typo-Critical has recently embarked upon a campaign to assess and project where Rap and R&B music appears to be going as we head into 2011-2020. To get a feel for where I’m going with these predictions, peep the first edition of “The Future of Music.” Now, on to my next one –

Prediction 2: “conscious” rap briefly re-emerges.


“I’m one of the few who’s been accused and abused/of the crime of poisonin’ young minds/but you don’t know shit ’til you been in my shoes!” – Dr. Dre, “100 Miles N Runnin'”

The last decade of the twentieth century (the 90s) witnessed a slight building upon what has been popularly referred to as “conscious rap.” Channeling oratorical masterpieces of poets of the 60s and 70s like Gil Scott-Heron and Amiri Baraka, conscious rap music was classified as any music that incited thought, discussion, or dissection of issues prevalent in a given community. The most distinctive difference between these past poets and conscious rappers of the 90s, is that the former often wrote pieces geared towards Black pride and challenging “the Man”; while the latter talked about the harsh realities that came with being a part of an underclass or underrepresented community.

Following groups such Eric B & Rakim and Public Enemy (when Flavor Flav was a rebel in his own mind instead of about chicken and chickenheads), arguably gangsta rap in its earliest forms could be considered the emergence of conscious rap in the 90s. I could literally dedicate a book to gangsta rap – indeed, it’s already been done – but just for a reference point, the rap group N.W.A. (Niggaz Wit’ Attitudes) was one of the earliest and most well-known gangsta rap groups. *Note: I say this with no disrespect to Boogie Down Productions, whose Criminal Minded album back in the 80s is credited with birthing “gangsta rap” before the group went conscious*. N.W.A. was largely credited with bringing in a very raw, uncut sound to rap music and hence starting a trend that continues to this day (although it has focused less on violence and more so especially on the drug-dealing/”trapping” aspect in the modern). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 19, 2010 in Music

 

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Illuminati Me

A young man is born of poor circumstances, albeit in a privileged nation. He does well in school but decides that instead of applying himself in the classroom his time is better spent participating in illicit activities. While beginning a criminal lifestyle at a young age he matures enough to realize that the illegal lifestyle isn’t the one for him and he begins to nurture what is seemingly his most marketable skill for a man in his position. He works hard but is denied entry into his chosen field by the established powers thus without options for an institutional approval he starts his own. Through hard work and business savvy over  several years he finds himself not only thriving in his chosen profession but is an institution within the field himself.

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Welcome Back Weezy

Birdman x Lil Wayne – Fire Flame (Remix)

 

I promise I write about more than music. Anyway Welcome Back Weezy dropped his first post Riker‘s verse today on his adopted pops Fire Flame track. Lil Wayne does his thing as usual, grip tight flow – check, off the wall punchlines – check, attention grabbing delivery – check, personality asserting ad-libs – check, he’s acting like he never left. With Kanye really gunning for that number one spot Lil Wayne comes back with the formula that put him there in the first place, a consistent ability to make people wonder what he’ll say next on tracks. Hopefully his time in the belly of the beast (we really do need prison reform but that’s another post) only sharpened his skills.

 
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Posted by on November 15, 2010 in Music

 

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