Across The Aisle #5: Exploration, Conquest and Sonic Colonization

WARNING: Across the Aisle features a weekly helping of extraordinary, yet exploratory, writing, gratuitous pop culture abuse, and complimentary Funyons. Due to our conscious decision to explore familiar themes in an inimitable, though inherently divisive, manner, such brilliance is solely intended for mature reading audiences. This is Hive Mind 101. That glorious moment when Wonder Twin powers activate. Jay Connor. Alex Hardy. The triumphant return of Voltron. These ain’t no studio tricks. Enjoy.

Episode 05

Exploration, Conquest and Sonic Colonization

Jay Connor: Academics and adolescence. One I cherish, the other was only good for wet dreams and my driver’s license. But as if the grave, fascist injustice known as detention wasn’t enough, four times a year my teachers were endowed with the mutant power of free reign to shit on my pubescent parade. In time, the alphabet became my mortal enemy. All it took was one too many D’s or F’s and my TV, VCR and CD’s would be MIA ASAP. It was checks and balances, consequences and repercussions. The Day of Atonement, crammed into my Trapper Keeper and sent home for express delivery. But in hindsight, Judgment Day wasn’t just a youth laden with growth spurts and Scarlet Letters, but a catalyst for growth. Change: the same verb Obama was bloviating about. So in a world in which “Thrift Shop” has been christened the greatest Rap song of all-time (Oh, you missed the memo?), clearly something is awry. And by “awry” I mean, fuck this shit. So White rappers, Biebers, and practitioners of siphoned Soul, this will be the last time you defile the Soul Train line with your malignant hand dancing, because your report cards hath arrived. And now a word from our sponsor, Vitriol.
Alex Hardy: I laughed the heartiest laugh that had ever been laughed when I read about how Macklemorefish enslaved them charts and solidified his place in hell history with that song that makes my armpits and eyeballs itch, ensuring that we’ll be hearing his name for many years and herpes outbreaks to come. Anyhow, I feel that it is our responsibility and right as Keepers of the Cool to judge those who borrow, jack, bastardize, imitate, profit from and destroy that which Chocolate Wonders before us worked tirelessly--likely with the aid of that booger sugar because that was the thing, mind you-- to orchestrate. I don’t know who deserves to be brought before the tribunal first, but I feel like all trespasses should be punished by extended viewings of Black ass concert footage. And waterboarding, right? Seatbelts, please.
JC: If you’re gonna slay a dragon, you go for the head first, right? Well, if that’s the case, you’re up, Mr. Mathers. The execution will commence after you put on your blindfold.
Rap Hands – A+
Catalog – D
Abuse of White Privilege – B
Cultural Appropriation – D
Fashion Sense – F
Urinalysis – D
JC: First and foremost, I don’t give a good gotdamn what Benzino says, Em is one of the most disgustingly talented individuals to ever touch a microphone. Period. Now that we got that out the way, his catalog is equally as grandiose an embarrassment. What’s the 8th Wonder of the World, you ask? How White people keep buying this fuck shit. How do you go from this to this? That said, though painfully reluctant to accept this unconditional approval, Em has always been very vocal about The Man concealing his ensemble of faux paus behind American Music Awards and platinum plaques. So at least there’s that. Also, I give dude props for being authentic in who he is, and imbuing the trailer park contingent with hope for a stolen lottery ticket that final B&O Railroad piece. But since he’s a first ballot Rap Hands Hall of Famer, with movements so majestic that even Drake and Lupe Fiasco’s wrists must bow in reverence, I’ll forgive him for that whole du-rag shtick. Because who doesn’t want waves?
AH: Look. Waves are serious currency in the treacherous Land of Rhyme Spitting White Supremacy Beneficiaries. Being melanin-free with that ill swirl in your head is like finding a secret world on Super Mario Brothers on Super Nintendo. It’s approaching Teena Marie Affirmative Action Soul Brother/Sister status. A backdoor to Blackness, if you will. Just ask this kid:
So I can’t fault Mr. Mathers for his Wave Wishes and Coon Coif Dreams. His D for Catalog, though, is unfortunate, as any boosts he had to his legacy in the start of his career were bound and gagged, placed in the back of a ‘76 Cutlass and banished to the bottom of Lake Erie so that his new alter-ego, Ringmaster of Em’s Angryman Wackstravaganza, could flourish. I give him credit for sticking with his Unimpressive White Dude In A Hoodie aesthetic and not letting fame change him. That boy’s OG Pill-Popping Slacker swag is on 100 kazillion dozen hundred. The only modification I’d make to your scoring is as follows:
Abuse of White Privilege – A+
...because his performance as the Voice of Angry White American Male Angst is admirable. That bitch has committed to this role. He knows there will forever be an audience for Sometimes-Druggy Formerly Abusive White Dude Jingles. That is privilege if I’ve ever seen the shit.
JC: Sorry, Marshall. If you hated your mother before, I’m sure she can’t wait to return the favor after you bring home these grades. Who’s next on the menu?
AH: Miley Virus. The devil at my doorstep. Her masterful magic carpet ride from wholesome honky tonk pop tart to Diluted Ethnic Behavior Performance Specialist Numero Uno was motherfucking phenomenal. How she managed to at once piss off We Who Respect Ourselves and crown herself the current Monarch of Privileged Mindlessness is nothing short of legendary. I initially paid attention to her because a close friend danced on her tours for years. Plus, I have two nieces who were into that and have since seen the light. Basically, I know more French Hannah Montana lyrics than a grownup should. But once she happened upon Convenient WhiteBlackness, I could no longer stay on board the Porcelain Coonery Express. For the sake of everyone onboard, help me gather my things, for this is my stop.
In short, If I want to see people doing Black shit terribly, I’ll watch a Tyler Perry production. Miley steppin’ to the bad side is precisely what happens when her skinfolk and the old White suits who pull the strings figure it’s time to take urban music for a spin as a means to mark a transition from Pure Young White Woman to Worldy Dame. And what better way to intentionally shake off your purty than by cavorting with The Niggers?! See: Britney’s In The Zone, when she trotted out THE FUCKING YING YANG TWINS to inform you, who may or may not have known, that she “got that boom boom.” Also see: Christina Aguilera Xtina’s darkness safari with Dirrrrrrrrrrrrrty” when she called up Redman and rented a few dozen sweaty, shirtless Latinos for the video. Anyhow, back to Miley Virus and her antics:
Use of Black Bodies as Props – A+
Paula Patton’s Ire – A++
Twerking - F+  
Lower Back Vibrations - B+
Advanced Shamelessness - A+
I must, regretfully, concede that her cover of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene” was not terrible. Now, her being dressed as if she’s late to dancer auditions for a TLC video after getting dropped off by her Black boyfriend is a whole different thing altogether.
JC: Some parties in the USA are meant to be crashed. And burned to the ground. Hopefully this is just a phase and she’ll return to her privilege senses after her butt cheeks rid themselves of that nasty case of Parkinson’s. In other news, I’m sure we’ll find that Malaysian airplane before we ever find the rest of her “ass”. But onto bigger fish to fry:
Affability – A+
Public Speaking (a.k.a. But He Speaks So Well)– A
Bitch Choking – C
Improvisation – A+
“What’s Happening!” Cast Familiarity – F
Chicken – F-
Fear not: he knows showtunes.
Well, hello there. Welcome to the enigma that is Wayne Alphonso Brady. Oh sure, he has his flirtations with the Dark Arts, but for the most part he’s the one guy you want in the car when the cops pull your black ass over. Because nothing staves off trumped up charges and police batons like a jovial “Oh hey, Chuck! How are the kids? Is there a problem here?” The physical embodiment of post-racial America, the anti-Kwanza, Wayne Brady might be the only Caucasian male in the history of Western Civilization who doesn’t dance with his hands. That said, don’t mistake his melanin deficiencies for weakness, a lesson Superhead’s boyfriend learned the hard way. But with police profiling and segregated water fountains out of the question, I suppose the only way we’ll ever get concrete evidence of Wayne’s ethnic standing is when his annual credit report comes back. Because numbers never lie, nigga.
AH: I’d give Brady F Baby a few extra points:
No, but you’re not like other Blacks - A+
White Fear-Disarming Knowledge of Showtunes - A++
JC: Aaaaaaaaaaand who’s next contestant on the Summer Jam screen?
AH: I reckon the most shining candidate for euthanasia Experimental Retroactive Adult Abortion and the mascot of the inescapable locust-like plague of porcelain people’s musical fuckshit we’re witnessing slithered on the scene from Canada. No, I’m not talking about Drake’s Jewish half. This is something satanic, self-destructive and dastardly. We are bearing witness to The Niggerization of Justin Bieber. I suppose that because I’m not the target demo and prefer my Blackness fresh from the source, rather than from concentrate, I can’t support what he offers unto the world. His one man fight to the death, as of late, produces more headlines than his music, and I feel like it’s time to whip out that countdown  they used for Britney when she was getting her privileged trainwreck on with the world watching. Since I’m not a post-pubescent girl whose family once likely owned slaves, I’m not the target demo for his antics and so I rarely hear any of what he does unless it’s alongside some rappity rap person  and even then I still can’t seem to care. As he was unleashed unto society cosigned by Uncle Usher, he’s been marinated in the finest Negro-derived extra virgin soul drippings and prepped for relentless Public Assholery. Elaborate stage shows and mucho choreography: check. Bonus-level emoting and ridiculous R&B person fuckery: check. Now, if he could just keep his clothes on and his nose clean, he will live to see 28 blossom into a full-grown Culture Vulture like those who have BlackWhited before him.
Annoying The Fuck Out of Black America - A+
Ancestral Embarrassment - A+
Black Job Creation - A+
JC: Oh, Other Justin. You were so much more tolerable before one too many late night BET Uncut binges magically transformed you into Malibu’s Most Wanted. It was a slippery slope, but thankfully your transparency will always afford you the luxury of a foam pit of entitlement to descend upon.

AH: It can't be easy walking that tightrope betwixt privileged existence and being the one who catches taxis for the homies Darkishly Cool. For every Eminem and Action Bronson there are twelve Pop & B falsetto-loving over-emoters who retreat to their tower of ivory immunity in the face of a scandal, arrest, or onslaught of criticism. The list of siphoned Soul practitioners who pick up and put down cultures as album promo dictates lengthens weekly, and they are far too plentiful to strap into one electric chair cover at once. Let's file this under TO BE CONTINUED and revisit this in the near future. Because as long as Chocolate Wonders keep (effortlessly) supplying Cool by the pound, the market will stay packed with bargain bin beige Blackness.

You're welcome, universe.

Catch up on all Across The Aisle installments, here.
A million thanks to my partner in crime:

Jay Connor is a prized pupil of the esteemed Professor Xavier and a Los Angeles based freelance writer. When he’s not preoccupied with accruing overdraft fees while chasing the dream, he can be found disseminating terrorist threats on Twitter and  on Facebook. Direct all business inquiries, sexual innuendo and Nigerian email scams to

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