Thugs and Fighting

My favorite reaction to somebody crying over how nobody could ever be interested in what they have to offer is to bring up how big gangster rap had been in the late 90s and early 2000s. Without the music industry's creative portrayal of criminal, violent, drug dealers living in the projects, being a thug would've never admired by masses of Midwestern teenagers.

This image of thug differed from the Italian mobster that had been painted cool decades prior by the film industry. The mob life was portrayed as more of a career choice, as in although the racket was illegal, they still operated with rules and operated under an agreement of rules with civilized society. A mobster could play by these rules and climb the Family ladder to live a lavish, protected lifestyle. That was the American Gangster dream. Then gangster rap arrived. 

Instead of showing the possible outcomes of organized crime, it revealed the chaos of low level disorganized crime. Rather than calculated, chess maneuvers made by forward thinkers, hip hop indulged into the fatalistic decisions made by someone with their back against a cliff in a way they never agreed to.

The Shook's lived on a dirt road in a house built by Craig's own hands. In it were us. Three teenagers talking incessantly about the gangster rappers we adored. Back then It was all about 50 Cent and his crew G-Unit. Songs depicting tales of being hunted down in the ghetto and turning the tables to kill the other guy. Tales of surviving nine bullets and coming back to have the entire opposing crew killed. 

I can't even remember how we spent so much time talking about these people. You would think that we would run out of material, but I guess we kept ourselves busy glorifying them. I think it's similar to how now we can't run out of conversations tied back to the messages of people like Godin, Asprey, Clear, Vee. We might be discussing more concrete things in our lives, but somehow linking it back to the teachings of these prominent thinkers.

I guess as teenagers Kenny, Dan, and I were talking about our lives, then linking it back to what gangster rappers like Lloyd Banks or Fifty would do. How would they fuck the other guy up? How would they be smoking weed before waiting to jump the other guy's crew?

None of us ever got into fights at school but fighting was one of the things we talked most about. Who would win in what what fight? Who might be fighting who soon? Do you remember what happened when Mike fucked that guy up? It made me feel like any day now we would get into some brawl with some other punks. And I couldn't wait to watch Kenny kick their asses.