Warning: If you are humor deficient, the respectability police, cannot recognize a high top taper haircut or never had the urge to swerve on someone, then this is not the post for you. If you expect legal analysis or a premature prognosis for rap/pop culture/ black people, then this also isn’t the post. Also, I like to think that when my time is done, the Big Homie will judge my deeds and compassion more than appreciation of storytelling, which sometimes includes ratchet rap.
So, Torrence Hatch, aka Lil Boosie, almost broke the Internet, and simultaneously my phone Wednesday night. Media reports reappeared. Screenshots, hashtags, photos and lyrics crossed social media. Someone tweeted ellipsis from his official Twitter page. Lil Boosie was being tweeted about with the likes of sponsored content and Ukrainian unrest.
Closet Boosie-heads, longtime Boosie fans and folks who like some songs, but can’t spit all of his albums, mix tapes or comrades from memory, buzzed.
This was another example of when it’s fun to be part of the Internet, social media and see how folks respond. It is also an occasion to ignore and unfollow folks who used Boosie’s release from prison as their moment to give e-ultimatums or slap vapid labels on people who found his Mr. Hatch’s release newsworthy–or gasp– exciting.
Here’s the thing. The Internet and social media rock because we can galvanize in instances of necessary resistance, raise money, counter stereotypes, and support indie content curators. We can also be academic/enlightened/conscious/whatever-else while admitting that entertainment news is … entertaining.
I’m no less “down” for flashing back to Greek stroll-offs blaring “Wipe Me Down” in undergrad, although I spent all of today briefing cases and distinguishing doctrines. People are dynamic. It’s ok to breathe.
Some of y’all love Jesus and like Boosie a heckuva lot. Y’all thought I was gonna say love. No predictable parallelism here, bruh.
If nothing else, I appreciate that any time I have tried to engage my mother in a rap conversation in which Boosie is included, we have to hop the “No, not Bootsy Collins” hurdle. My older cousin responded the same way. Maybe it’s generational.
My favorite Boosie song is “Devils.” Yes, he takes shots at the same justice system that imprisoned him and others. But, for me, we all encounter “devils.” Negative energy. Unnecessary drama. Covetous spirits. Unfairness. Disloyalty. All of that can “get up off me” or zoom right by me, posthaste.
Whether loved, hated or rendering folks indifferent, Boosie inspires discussions. Fans argue the politics of Boosie and savage life the way others argue normative politics. And sometimes they are the same people. As. In. Boosie. Fans. Can. Have. Nuanced. Discussions. Then, there’s his autocorrect rap, spelling the word “independent” on a track about a desirable woman. So many options.
In college, I saw a guy swell at his roommate, get thisclossse to Roomie’s face, and realize that arguing over a man who didn’t know they existed, was dumb. He took a seat. I want people to flock to bookstores (some day), my articles and blog with that same enthusiasm. I want my craft to get people involved. No almost violence, though. Vigorous debates!
Admittedly, Boosie fans are super Stans. It’s partially because of his raps’ transparency and the relatable way he’s marketed. Boosie makes some dudes feel him. He makes others feel like they ARE him. It’s wild.
So, yeah. The struggle will continue. You might be surprised at who has “some ratchet in” them. The world keeps spinning. Just now, a man who means a lot to a lot of people (and irks a lot of nerves) gets to be in real life, not prison.
Wipe him down?