Monthly Archives: November 2011

Pet Names Are A Persistant Remnant of Childhood

Jhumpa Lahiri

“Pet names are a persistant remnant of childhood, a reminder that life is not always so serious, so formal, so complicated. They are a reminder, too, that one is not all things to all people.”
Jhumpa Lahiri, The Namesake

Number one, author Jhumpa Lahiri is fine. Okay, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way …

I introduce myself to damn near everyone as “Jay Fingers.” It’s a college nickname that stuck, and it’s actually served to help me stand out in . While some people do ask if it’s my real name, most realize right away that it’s just a cute little sobriquet and are generally unperturbed by it. There is a small contingent of people, however, who will scoff upon hearing me addressed as “Fingers.” I’ll never forget the young woman who, after I’d be introduced to her by my nickname, sucked her teeth and said, “Well, if that’s what you want to be called.”

She was then immediately scolded by her friends. You see, I was promoting a party and actually hooking them up; they were afraid I would take the insult to heart and leave them standing outside the velvet rope. Luckily, I am not that thin-skinned.

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Read My Review of Drake’s Take Care at

Drake - Take Care

Featuring an impressive roster of guest artists, including Stevie Wonder, Andre 3000, Rihanna, Rick Ross, The Weeknd, and labelmates Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj, and boasting production from Just Blaze, Boi-1da, and long-time collaborator Noah “40” Shebib for production, Take Care is Drake’s attempt at giving listeners the classic album they’d expected with his debut.

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Happy Vodka and Turkey Bacon, It’s Thanksgiving!

A little bit of vodka in my life ...

Earlier today, as I ventured into the kitchen to whip up a small holiday breakfast of eggs, grits, and bacon, I discovered I had a small bit of vodka on hand. It was just enough to make a morning cocktail and get my day started right.

Today, as you should know, is Thanksgiving. It’s when we’re supposed to show gratitude for all the blessings we’ve received, and for all the people in our lives. Some, however, are not content to let the day be. They’d rather beat their chest and proclaim the day as evil, and criticize the rest of us who choose to celebrate it. To all of those armchair historians, I’d like to quote my homeboy Varyus Waise, who posted this earlier on Facebook:

To all the “revolutionaries” saying “Happy Colonizer’s Day”, “I don’t celebrate a day of genocide”, etc… Dead it. You act like a [social media] status is going to bring back all who were murdered and bring the pilgrims who did the killing to justice. Be thankful you’re alive to even think such a thing and thankful for the family who want to spend the day with you. Peace.


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The Young White Male Author’s First Novel

Young White Male Author First Novel

Includes fascinating portrayals of casual drug use at house parties, how the author/protagonist had conversations about post-punk while seeing his mate’s band perform at some shitty small venue, internal monologues about consumerism while observing people in a mall and that time when the protagonist had an epiphany about living in the moment while walking in the rain.

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Mago x E.R. – “Best of Both Worlds” Music Video

This actually dropped a couple of weeks ago but I wasn’t blogging at the time so I missed the opportunity to let y’all know about the latest collaboration between my buddy E.R. (of The Vagabonds) and Dominican MC Mago.

“Best of Both Worlds” showcases the rhyme skills of the two Miami-based lyricists, the concept being that Mago (who also produced the track) spits in Spanish while E.R. raps in English. The song has no hook—it’s just the two MCs going back and forth, tag team-style. “Although Latinos have been well represented in hip-hop in the past,” E.R. writes on the VMG blog, “it’s rare to see both sides of the spectrum being showcased alongside each other.”

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Am I Really A Writer?

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Friendships Fluctuate

Rapper Wale heads back to his tour bus outside of Magic City, an Atlanta strip club, October 12, 2011.

I’ll be very, very honest: I’m not the biggest Wale fan. I mean, I dug a couple songs off his Mixtape About Nothing (which I can recognize is classic despite not really liking the whole project), and I certainly recognize the man’s talent. I just don’t feel him like that. Add to the fact that he linked with Rick Ross’s MMG camp and Wale continues to get the side-eye from me.

Having said that, a recent interview Wale did with The FADER has only made my respect for the man grow. Check out what he said about working with Lady Gaga, who, if you didn’t know, was featured on Wale’s first single “Chillin’.” It’s some real shit:

Niggas ain’t your friend. Lady Gaga ain’t my friend. We at the “Chillin'” video shoot talking like we friends, then we at the awards and she walked right past. She got seven, eight, nine number one records and the record we made never worked. “Why should I still care about Wale? His record sold 28,000.” But in the studio we was homies. That was my first lesson. Not that I thought I’d be taking fucking shots of Ciroc with Lady Gaga on a Friday night watching SVU, but put it this way: friendships fluctuate with how hot you are or how cold you are in the industry.

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