“War is hell.”
William Tecumseh Sherman
“But the hushing of the criticism of honest opponents is a dangerous thing.”
W.E.B. Du Bois
Hot damn hoe, here we go again…
In a move straight out of the Vladimir Lenin playbook of power, avarice, and insanity, Vladimir Putin, President of Russia, began a war with Ukraine on 2.24. Ukraine is a neighboring country to Russia and a former member of the Soviet Union during the “glory days.” Putin, butt hurt over the current state of the world, has chosen the oft-used Russian bully tactic of invading nearby sovereign nations, last seen eight years ago with the invasion and annexation of the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine. Before that it was the Second Chechen War of 1999-2000, in which Chechnya’s loyalist government was restored and Chechnya was reincorporated into Russia. Now, you’ll hear others talk about the natural resources that Ukraine has to offer, resources that Russia desires. You’ll hear talk about Ukraine’s ambitions to align itself with Western countries and its interest in joining NATO. There’s even talk about “de-Nazifying” Ukraine. Blah, blah, blah. The true reason for the war is Putin and Putin alone. He's been slow cooking since the fall of Communism (a decade before he came into power), growing to hate democracy and those who believe in its basic tenets. Of course, that primarily includes the United States. It also includes the European nations who believe in freedom and free thinking. He’s not too fond of Germany or the United Kingdom either. He hates NATO altogether. So…what’s the outcome gonna be? I’m not clairvoyant; I have no clue. What I do know is that even if Russia does reclaim Ukraine, it will come at a price Russia is in no way prepared to pay. The ruble (their basic unit of currency) has already crashed. Several sanctions have already been placed on Russia, primarily economic. SWIFT, the system that connects banks around the world, has begun to shun Russia. The assets Putin and Russian oligarchs have in banks on this side of the world have been frozen. Russian planes are no longer welcome to fly through many European air zones. You see where this is going. The most efficient way to break a country down is to paralyze it economically. Russia will soon be tantamount to a criminal at-large who has run into a building and barricaded himself. SWAT has the building surrounded. It’s only a matter of time until Russia will be forced to relent. Unless…
Putin has one card to play in the event of personal calamity, but this card is the endgame. Yes, I’m referring to nuclear warfare. He has already not only threatened to use nuclear power, but he’s also informed his people to get the nukes ready. This has naturally set social media afire with all types of bullshit, with some in fear of the possibility of nuclear warfare. I don’t claim to be any type of expert, but if I’ve learned anything from arrogant, self-serving autocrat wannabes like Putin, tRump, and fat boy in North Korea, it’s that they love themselves, their riches, and their lives way too much to push the red button. Pushing the red button all but assures the end of the world. They don’t have the nut sack to do it. At the end of the day, y’all MF better hope and pray I’m correct.
ONE MORE THING
IF (and that’s a big IF) the reports of Ukrainian officials barring African students from boarding trains and buses out of the war zone into Poland and safety are correct…
I won’t even finish the thought.
Syke, I lied.
If it’s true…[REDACTED].
If you know me, you can fill the redacted part in with my two-word response.
I stand with my African brothers and sisters. I’m most concerned about their safety.
From Wack 100 on Clubhouse to Tsu Surf on Twitter Spaces, I’ve never been able to grasp the concept of listening to another man talk – for hours at a time. I’ve mentioned it before, but I’ll mention it again. I had access to Clubhouse when it first came out, back when it was ultra-exclusive, back when you had to receive an invite to join. I jumped on a time or three. I met a couple of good people, one of which I still have a Twitter rapport with to this day. But it quickly became apparent to me that I’d likely never fully embrace Clubhouse. I’m not knocking the concept. I always thought (and still do) think it’s brilliant in its own way. I just realized that I’m rarely ever in the mood to sit back and listen to a MF I don’t know [personally] speak, outside of a seminar or sermon (not too big on those these days, either). A few months ago, Twitter copied the format and introduced Spaces to its users. It quickly became a favorite go-to in the battle rap community, with top-tier battler Tsu Surf and others hosting and speaking in Spaces for hours on end. I immediately saw its allure amongst battle rap fans; it gave them the opportunity to become better acquainted with battle rappers on a day-to-day basis. It tore down the facade of mystery, making battlers more “accessible” to their fans. Previously, the only time fans of the culture could get any type of glimpse into the everyday lives of battle rappers was when one of the battle rap media outlets like 15 Minutes of Fame, Hip Hop is Real (HHIR), or Champion gave exclusive interviews. But, like almost everything in this world, too much access isn’t always the best thing. On Clubhouse, Wack 100 flounders somewhere in between being a seemingly almost omniscient OG in rap culture (with roots dating back to Suge Knight and the early days of Death Row) and a loquacious asshole, all too ready to expose others for all types of shit, whether true or false. He’s got an opinion AND insight on almost every damn thing. His opinions and “testimonies” have gotten him into all types of drama, the latest coming from his accusations of Memphis rapper Pooh Shiesty being a snitch, cooperating as a federal informant. Shiesty’s attorney called Wack’s claim an outright lie. The attorney asserts that Shiesty took a plea on one count of possession of a weapon during a drug crime, the same as the other two defendants in the case. Last I heard, Wack was backtracking, claiming that he didn’t actually call Shiesty a snitch. Sure... As for Tsunami and other battle rappers, Spaces has shown that dick eating is at an all-time high in the culture. Tsu has created an almost zombie-like following of boot lickers, agreeing with EVERYTHING Surf says at all times (battle rappers, media, and fans alike). Naysayers are ganged up on, made fun of, muted, and humiliated on Spaces and on the Twitter TL. Surf is the new #45 on Spaces; he can do no wrong amongst his people. He has also put his emotions on full display, often contradicting himself from argument to argument. Hey, more power to him. I’m just saying I don’t eat dick – ever. I’ve never in my life agreed with EVERYTHING a MF has to say. So, in addition to not being the type to listen hours consecutively, I’m not a card carrying, flag waving fan club member either. All that shit is weird to me.
While we’re on the topic of battle rap, I want to show all types of love to my baby Remy Ma. Chrome 23 (her all female battle league) hosted its inaugural event and was amazing in most aspects, from the aesthetics to the battles. Remy secured a midtown Manhattan nightclub as the location. She also secured diverse sponsors, including Hot 97, who live streamed the event. A who’s who of guests attended, from the battle rap community to major label rap artists. She provided hair styling and wardrobe for all the participants. She also guaranteed EVERY battler a five-digit purse for the event, a first in the female battle rap culture. Big ups to the rookie of the year (male or female) Pristavia in her win over Yoshi G. Yoshi fought hard, but her arms were too short to box with the goddess. In a battle of the Bardashians, O’fficial defeated her sister in rhyme Casey J. Both ladies delivered, but O came a bit harder. In the ultimate grudge match (and the most disrespectful battle I’ve ever seen), 40 B.A.R.R.S. 30’d QB Black Diamond. Words cannot truly convey the disrespect; you have to watch for yourself. In the main event, Couture scored an upset victory over my girl Ms. Hustle. It was probably the best back-and-forth of the night. Couture prospered from winning the coin toss and electing to go second. The results were determined by fan votes on the Hot 97 website, and I agreed with every fan result. I’m looking forward to the next event. My only gripe: hire JB or Avocado for the camera work next time. My rating: 7.5/10.
The day prior, the URL held its event Resolution 2 at the Caffeine studio in Cali. Originally a five-battle card, there were only three battles, with two being rescheduled. In the first battle, Charron beat T-Top. I had Top edging the first and Charron winning the second and third. The battle was ultra-competitive, with Charron’s superior freestyle rebuttal ability being the difference. In a top tier versus god tier matchup, Eazy the Block Captain beat battle rap legend A-Verb. I had Verb taking the first and Eazy taking the second and third. It was a very solid battle. In the main event, quickly approaching god tier battler DNA 30’d god tier legend Hollow Da Don in the “Battle of [the borough] Queens.” I don’t know what the fuck was up with Hollow (he didn’t bother to get a hairline and had the Garfield eyeballs – he may have taken a 2-on-2 to the face before the battle), but he got smoked. Vada Fly already mailed him the wooden “L.” It was nasty work. Overall, the event was lackluster. The rescheduling of the Charlie Clips/Lu Castro and Real Name Brandon/Kyd Slade battles was deflating, but the choppy stream was even worse. Caffeine must do better. I rate the event a 5/10. I may be a bit generous in my rating.
Along with Pac’s legendary All Eyez on Me double album, my other favorite straight out the penitentiary album from an artist of any genre is easily Chico DeBarge’s late 1997 release Long Time No See. No one saw Chico coming. He bum rushed the industry and dropped a classic album that I still rock to this day. The album had four singles: lead single “Iggin’ Me,” my favorite track on the album “Love Still Good” (deeply sensual and outright amazing), the 1998 summer anthem “No Guarantee” featuring my first cousin Joe, and “Virgin.” Even though he was a part of the final DeBarge project in the ‘80s and dropped his solo debut and sophomore project back when, I only knew Chico for moving heavy yay with his big brother Bobby (RIP). Y’all pray for Chico. He lost his oldest boy to homicide a couple of years ago and is still battling drug addiction. I’m praying for you, my guy. Keep on keeping on. Love, infinite. You’re MY nigga.
I wanted to hit you good people with a nice, fruitful blog today. I was on top of my business and didn’t have to pull a rabbit out of my ass this week. In other words, I was well prepared. It’s about time to drop a special edition on y’all, so be on the lookout. Salute to my CEO and the entire Crew UnB collective. Ain’t nothing changed but the drawz. Big ups to my bro-in-law Branden, one of the realest MF I’ve ever known. Love you baby boy. That’s all for now. Catch me next week, same Bat time, same Bat channel. One love.
tymonday.com: @tymonday on Twitter & IG
crewunb.com: @crewunB on Twitter & @theunbearablescrew on IG
#MNR: Points of View
“Hold up, wait a minute. Y’all thought I was finished?”
I’m pleased to report that I feel good all over, sorta like Stephanie Mills in 1987. Not only am I free of the pain which has kept me in perpetual discomfort (literally, no hyperbole) for the past two weeks, but I am also going on three weeks sober. I no longer have the desire to twist up green trees in succession [on the daily]. Sobriety has never felt this organic; my other attempts to shake the tree were forced and at times felt torturous. And trust, I’ve got PLENTY on deck (IYKYK). It doesn’t matter. For the first time since I was fifteen-and-three-quarter, my high is all natural, and I love the feeling. This is the part where I’d usually issue a disclaimer to shield the element of hypocrisy should I fall off the wagon at some point, but I meant what I said. I love being sober. It feels great. I’m a MF king. I don’t need stimulation to enjoy life…anymore.
I’m not about to become anyone’s local D.A.R.E. resource officer. If you still love the feeling of getting higher than Keith Richards on the Stones’ 1975 Tour of the Americas, do your MF thing. I’m neither judge nor jury. Just respect my sobriety and don’t attempt to pass me a J on some immature high school shit. I just may smack your lips off your goofy ass face. Respect mine and I’ll respect yours.
Crime in NYC subways is spiraling out of control. There are reports of one or more subway assaults EVERY single day on the news. Stabbings have increased by 35% in a year. Mayor Eric Adams has deployed 1,000 cops to network in an attempt to curtail the soaring crime rate on MTA platforms and trains. The Subway Safety Plan calls on officers to step up enforcement of subway rules and empty trains at the end of line routes. The officers will be accompanied by health workers who will assist the mentally ill and point them to the city’s support services. Governor Kathy Hochul said the state will provide 1,100 beds for psychiatric and homeless shelter use as part of a $39.5M statewide initiative. 600 of the beds will be placed in the city. The state will also invest $9M a year to recruit mental health workers. Even though the mental health crisis and homelessness have been issues within the city for a while now, they were certainly exacerbated by the COVID pandemic. And although the statistics are nowhere near the dreadful 1980s, the sentiment is quickly mirroring the dismay of the long-gone era. I sincerely hope the mayor and others can mitigate the subway issues efficiently. I still use the MTA to commute when I’m home. I’m a certified outsider now, and a keen eye can discern. I’d hate to catch a buck-fifty and/or have to beat the living shit out of a deranged MF thinking I’m food when I’m riding MTA. But I ain’t been scared since 1996, so it is what it is. Y’all be safe on those trains. Stay well behind the yellow line on the platform. Keep one ear free of pods/headphones. Make sure your head stays on swivel, especially in the late night.
Juwan Howard – come take this walk with me…
IDGAF what that pilgrim assistant coach from Wisconsin said in the post-game handshake line. IDGAF about a timeout being called with 0.000002 seconds left. None of that matters. You CANNOT do what you did yesterday, slapping that man and damn near inciting a riot. Race doesn’t matter. Emotion doesn’t matter. Professionalism is a must when you’re one of the state’s highest paid public employees. In comparison, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer makes $159,300 annually. You signed a five-year extension last November worth $17M. Few state employees earn more than you are annually. That list includes fellow alum Jim Harbaugh, coach of the Michigan football team, MSU head basketball coach Tom Izzo, and MSU head football coach Mel Tucker. You’ve always been a standup individual. This is a pretty serious blemish on your legacy. I’d expect this from others, but not you. And no, I’m not giving you some ignorant ass pass because you’re a brother and you put hands on a pilgrim. You were completely out of line. Your team is on the bubble and now they are without your leadership for the rest of the regular season. I pray the university doesn’t decide to cut you that $5M severance check and tell you to get the fuck out of Ann Arbor when the season concludes.
For those of you without a firestick or too cheap to pay the damn $5.32 monthly after taxes, Peacock’s Bel Air is one helluva show. I don’t care about the 60% Rotten Tomatoes rating. The latest Saved by the Bell reboot is hovering near 90%. It’s a decent show, but ain’t no damn way it deserves its RT score. I’m almost certain that the lukewarm rating is from pilgrims who were TOTALLY into the original Fresh Prince of Bel Air and tuned in hoping for a revival of the almost slapstick routine of yesteryear. Sorry. Will doesn’t crack on Uncle Phil (for one because he’s ripped), Jazz doesn’t get thrown out on his neck by Uncle Phil, and so on. Bel Air took a dark and dramatic approach for the reboot and is almost the polar opposite of its predecessor. I love it. The first four episodes have been must-see TV IMO. My guy Eazy da Block Captain from battle rap fame was given the role of Rashad Denton, better known as the man who ran Will out of West Philadelphia, and as a battle rap fanatic, I’m damn proud. I don’t want to give anything away. All I can say is find a way to put eyes on the new product. The casting is spot-on, and the visuals are stupendous. I’m hooked like a crackhead junkie. But don’t take my word; see for yourself. Drop a comment in my inbox or when you see me in the streets.
Big ups to New Jerusalem’s own Karl-Anthony Towns for winning the 3-point contest this past All-Star weekend. You spoke confidently throughout the process and backed your words up with a W. I’m impressed, young fella. Big ups x 2 to my guy Obi Toppin for winning the slam dunk contest. Yeah, the contest was pretty mid, but Obi got the only victory that I can be proud of in this tremendous disappointment of a Knicks season. And while I’m on the topic of disappointing seasons and as much as I hate to say it, Coach Thibs, it may be time for you to step the fuck off. Defense is your calling card, yet we couldn’t stick gorilla glue to a Velcro wall. You were never the offensive savant, and it shows. We are a trash team, and aside from Julius Randall, I place the blame on you. You’ve been a shitty head coach in 2021-2022, and it may be time to part ways. I deserve waaaaaay better than this as a loyal, lifelong fan. Fuck y’all.
DISCLAIMER: As much as I’d like to go on for like two more pages, I’m tied (tired). I need my beauty rest. I’ll holla.
tymonday.com: @tymonday on Twitter & IG
crewunb.com: @crewunB on Twitter & @theunbearablescrew on IG
“Let me explain how I maintain thresholds for pain/and walk across the sun barefoot looking for shade.”
(This is how last week’s blog began. It was never completed.)
Man, I’ve got a damn stone doing the electric slide through my right kidney. I literally just got out of the bed today, having been incapacitated since Thursday afternoon. I can’t begin to describe the pain involved. Luckily, I believe I’m through with the worst part because I can sit still for more than twenty minutes without having to contort like Harry Houdini. I know that my lil sis from Huntley Fam and my bro from high school (NFL Clique for life) have them worse than I, so I will not complain. Thankfully, sis put me onto Chancapiedra tea, a kidney stone support supplement. Evil Bezos is sending it through the pony express tomorrow. I needed it Thursday. But God is still undefeated. I didn’t have to go to the emergency room this time. Health is truly wealth. Stay on top of your game so you can stay in the game. That was a note to self; don’t mind me.
(I was wrong on having endured the worst part; all of it was the worst part and fucked me up ALL last week.)
CORRECTION: NAS BLIXKY IS NOT DEAD. HE IS GOING TO SURVIVE. I PRAY IT STAYS THAT WAY.
“There’s a war going on outside no man is safe from.”
Since last week’s blog, two more NYC drill artists have been murdered. Woo member TDot Woo, friends with the late Pop Smoke and artist Fivio Foreign, was shot and killed in Brooklyn, hours after signing a record deal. TDot became famous for his Woo Walk dance, often stealing the show in his friends’ videos. He was 22 years old.
Eight days ago, SevSide affiliate CHii Wvttz was shot and killed in his home borough #BXNYC. He was somewhat famous on the Bronx drill scene, appearing in songs with Dougie B. and running with the clique made famous by Kay Flock and B. Lovee. CHii was 18 years old.
No arrests have been made in either case.
God bless the families of the victims. Two more dreams have been deferred.
I really wish I had the solution to the epidemic facing these rappers, but I understand the dynamics. There’s no simple solution.
Apparently, NYC Mayor Eric Adams had an epiphany after being “educated” on NYC Drill Music the other day, having watched a few videos that his son sent him. Now, he’s waging war on drill music, although I don’t quite know what that means. The last I checked, free speech was protected under Amendment 1. My guess is that he’ll send his goon squad into the areas where drill artists are known to inhabit and…Yeah, I’m still pretty lost on this one. The whole fucking thing makes no sense to me. Are you gonna lock all drill artists up just ‘cause? Is this communist China? Look, I get it. Something should be done because young men are dropping at an alarming rate. But I’m an NYC native who happens to live [just] on the other side of the Hudson. I’m about 20 minutes from SevSide, 45 minutes outside the heart of Medina. I watch the news daily (duh – I’m a journalist). Young niggas don’t need drill music to kill each other. It’s happening daily all over the city. I’m certain that if no other drill song is ever made, these kids will continue to move how they move. Why? Because the problem is systemic, and not birthed by the music. Gang culture has been rampant in NYC the entire millennium. It didn’t happen overnight. Now let’s discuss the socio economic aspect. I don’t need to delve into the data to tell you that the education numbers in the city are horrible. They’ve been that way for a long time. I’m lying. Y’all already know I did my research. The dropout rate in #BXNYC is 11.7%. 15.2% didn’t finish ninth grade, which is the number that should be most scrutinized. Damn near one of every six kids in the X DO NOT MAKE IT PAST NINTH GRADE. That’s craaaaaazy. Let’s dive deeper. The poverty rate of #BXNYC residents under 18 years old is 37.1%. That number is beyond ridiculous. I don’t even know how to quantify any type of mental health data because there’s no way to quantify any data. You can count stats on those who receive some type of service, but there are so many who are undiagnosed that looking at raw data wouldn’t matter. If you don’t see where I’m headed, I’ll spoil the cliffhanger. Children in the city, especially #BXNYC, are failed from birth. Drill music is a product of the cumulative failure of the city in protecting our most precious resource. Mayor, banning drill music is the dumbest shit I’ve heard this year. Address the socio economic issues. That’s where you should start.
In my decade and a half as a one-to-one, I’ve always tried to avoid stepping on a teacher’s toes. Trust, I’ve been amidst some spineless, weak, pitiful MF in my day. But ultimately, they are the teachers and it’s their show. But one thing I can’t stomach is an educator who’s scared to step to a kid who’s out of pocket. The fuck? In these instances, the teacher is either scared of the student(s) or desires to be their friend. THE FUCK? I let my young men know all the time that I love them dearly. I’m here for them. I’ve got their backs – always. But one thing I’m not is their friend. Now, after they graduate and become men? Perhaps. But I’m not on my job to dick eat. I could give a fuck about being liked if it means biting my tongue when a student acts like he/she runs the show. That’s non-cipher x 10. Unfortunately, I am in one period a day with a teacher who would rather befriend than chastise. I don’t know if this person is afraid of her/his students or if they just wanna be down. Either thought is disgusting. So, I have to be the strong arm of justice in the class. I’m the default enemy of these juvenile fucks because I have the temerity to talk to them like an adult should talk to a kid. I should be in the back of the room with my student, chillin like Kahlúa in milk. But some things I can’t let slide. It is what it is.
I would like to send the best vibes to all the lovers out there on this special day (allegedly). I’m not a hater of Valentine’s Day. I merely feel that it’s a bullshit corporate holiday. I love my lady every day of the year. I don’t need a day on the calendar to turn into Cupid. But that’s my sentiment. I realize that others (including my lady) are a bit sentimental when it comes to this day. The Tyrone X act won’t quite work today. All jokes aside, regardless of whether you bought your lover a Tesla today or could barely afford a five-cent gum, it’s the thought that counts. Let your significant other know just how special they are to you on this Valentine’s Day, and if you get the chance to splash waterfall, do your thiznahee. Peace to all lovers worldwide.
My apologies for not delivering last week. But I was more hurt than a real nigga when he reads the affidavit and realizes it was his best man who ratted on him. Thankfully, I feel much better. Business as usual is the mantra. Much love to all y’all. I’ll catch up witcha next week.
RIP MARY WALDECK. LOVE YOU FOREVER PLUS A DAY. TELL SHAREON I MISS HER.
tymonday.com: @tymonday on Twitter & IG
crewunb.com: @crewunB on Twitter & @theunbearablescrew on IG