The Top Five Catch Phrases From the 90’s

This post was born out my desire to do a post about the 90’s and my intention to have this week be a top five week.

Without further ado, here are the top five catch phrases from the 90’s:

Honorable Mentions:

“It’s on like Donkey Kong”

  • I am not sure of this phrase’s origin or how it made it into my lexicon, but it did. What exactly was Donkey Kong “on” that warranted this simile? Not all questions have answers, but I’m leaning toward the phrase’s sing song like melody as to way it was so popular. And sadly, I have one friend who uses this phrase for anything. “You ready to go to the movies?” “Yeah man. It’s on like Donkey Kong.” Why? Let it go.

 

“Sike”

  • Now this word right here was powerful, especially on the school playground. “Can I play basketball with you? “Sure…sike.” Talk about crushed feelings. This was the ultimate okie doke. I must have made a mistake not including it in the top five. Sike!

“Da Bomb”

  • This phrase is one that everyone and their grandparents were saying…about everything. “Girl, you da bomb” was a lame pickup line but somehow worked. “Dude, that show/those shoes/my jumper/those McDonalds’ fries was/were da bomb.” You can place any object, event, or even person in that sentence and it would make total, complete sense…in the 90’s. Utter those words, especially in a airport, and yeah…just don’t do it.

5. “It’s all about the Benjamins”

  • Puff Daddy, his 90’s moniker, and his crew made sure that everyone understood that it, dangling modifier that can represent anything, was about the paper, scrilla, chesse, greenbacks, duckets, and the CREAM. Everyone clearly agreed because this became a huge catchphrase in the 90’s.

4. “Who let the dogs out?”

  • Woof! Sorry I couldn’t help myself. While the Baha Men, where are they now, made this phrase popular, many people forget that their song was on the soundtrack to…wait for it…Rugrats in Paris. Google it, if you don’t believe me. This track blared from car sound systems to stadium speakers. You know you made it when Regis uses your phrase on his show, and that he did with this one.

3. “You go, girl”

  • Martin Lawerence is responsible for this catch phrase. He constantly encouraged his love interest on the show, Martin, with the phrase. A true phrase of endearment and support. Oddly, when people tried to support their male counterparts the opposite saying of “You go, boy” did not carry the same heft.

2. “Raise the roof”

  • Even though congress and others tried to ban Uncle Luke and his 2Live Crew from recording and performing Miami bass music due to their vulgar language and raucous booty shaking that accompanied it, Uncle Luke taught America how to raise the roof. EVERYONE did, at some point in their life, the pantomime of literally raising the roof. Look at you doing it now. Classic. Thanks Uncle Luke for this catch phrase and party rocking anthem.

1. “Talk to the hand.”

  • Martin makes a second appearance in the top five; this time he grabs the number one spot with the obnoxious and sarcastic gesture and phrase. This combined movement and saying was the ultimate way to convey “Shut up!” The phrase was so widely popular that it spawned numerous variations, including but not limited to: Jamie Foxx’s screeching gesture that he put in Braxton’s snooty face, “talk to the elbow cause it’s not worth the extension,” and “talk to the hand cause the face ain’t listening” (the latter two said with all the attitude and neck bobbing you could muster).

As always, what do you think? Please share any catch phrases from the 90’s that you think should have made the list.

Top Five Hip Hop Songs Played in a Predominantly White Parties

The other night, while down in the Lower East Side (LES), I went to a predominantly White bar to meet up with a few college friends. Upon entering said establishment, I quickly noticed drunk people dancing (with glow sticks), smelled a cheap beer aroma, and felt every degree of my personal space invaded. I had been here before, my mind screamed. No, I had never been to this particular bar, but it had all the symptoms of a White college frat party. While I won’t embarrass myself or offend any fraternity by pretending to remember its name or Greek letters, I do remember those college nights in some large room filled with drunk people, inebriated by cheap beer and cheaper alcohol (we all bought that $12 handle of Popov vodka), preparing to make poor decisions as the night grew old and their inhibitions plummeted. I can still feel the stickiness of the beer soaked floor on my sneakers as I tried to pry my foot loose and take another step. I also remember the music! It always fascinated which hip hop/rap songs dominated the airwaves during the collective drunken stupor. I was reminded of those musical selections the other night. Here are the top five hip hop songs played in a predominantly white setting:

Honorable Mention:

Jay-Z, “New York”

Jay-Z definitely hit the lottery with this track. It was so popular, especially in New York City. How popular? Fifth graders sang this song at their graduation. Yep, Jay-Z made it to the graduation playlist. Only reason why it is not a top five is because it has yet to stand the test of time. Will the wild frat party-goers want to hear this in 2020? Not sure. The only knock against it is that one cannot party and dance wildly to it.

5. Nelly, “Hot in Herre” and 50 Cent, “In da club”

50 Cent had everyone, grandparents included, chanting, “Go Shorty, it’s your birthday!” Meanwhile, Nelly had everyone, grandparents included, pondering, “Girl, I think my butt getting big.” Shout out to both artists for pinpointing every night in the club or bar; it is always hot and it is always someone’s birthday. Oh and let’s not talk about the misspelled words in the title; it added that much needed street cred or something like that.

4. Young MC, “Bust a Move”

Yep, Young MC is living somewhere chillin’ off this one record. I am always shocked at how many people, White guys, know the words to this ugh..classic…record.One time this dude seemed disappointed in my blackness because I did not know the words.

3. Naughty by Nature, “Hip Hop Hooray”

Treach, Vin Rock, and their DJ will forever be remembered because their joint causes random, infectious arm raising and subsequent arm swaying. Definitely a song that gets the party moving. The verses are not as easy to remember, but once that chorus comes on, put in your earplugs because everyone, and their grannies, knows that refrain.

2. Sir Mix A Lot, “Baby Got Back”

“Oh my god, Becky! Look at her butt.” Although skinny models are praised and idolized, Sir Mix A Lot tapped (no pun intended) into the man’s psyche and brought forward this classic tune about the male infatuation with a plump, rotund bottoms. And remember this song is ringing off at the White spots. Ladies, do them lunges. Please and thank you.

1. House of Pain, “Jump Around”

Was there any doubt that this would be number one? Irish rappers, infectious hip hop/rock beat, and the simplest of easy dance moves ever. The stereotype that White people cannot dance does not count with this song. Jump around!

Do you agree? What song did I leave off the list? Let me know in the comments section.

Kobe’s New Commercial with Kanye

Below is my running commentary of the new Kobe Bryant sneaker commercial co-starring Kanye West.

0:03–Kanye: amazing artist, who has had various public spats because of his mouth. Speaking of which, terrible bottom gold grill. Terrible. Win some, lose some. Oh, and that’s a valid question, “How much more do you want from [him].”

0:04–Kobe: amazing basketball player who could end up with the best career statistically since…wait for it…Michael Jordan. He recently had a semi-public divorce with his wife, Vanessa. Oh, and his response, “More,” suits his personality because he demands more of himself and his teammates.

0:05-0:08–same exchange, a question by Kanye and a “More” response from Kobe,  about being successful

0:08-0:12–same exchange about more records to break

0:15-18–Kobe responds to Kanye’s argument that Kanye is the best with a vague line about a different animal and same beast.

Wait, what?

I’m Confused. So is Kobe a different animal, like a raccoon, but the same beast, his traditional Mamba persona. Not sure.

0:20–Kanye shares my confuses. With the straightest of straight faces filled with honesty, sincerity, and a WTF attitude, Kanye strongly questions Kobe question/comment.

0:22-0:24–the stare down. Building drama, for which both are known.

0:25–More ambiguity from Kobe with “You’re welcome.”

0:26–Kanye now even more confused with Kobe’s final comment.

Both stars displayed their personality and why America both loves and abhors them. Kobe’s stoic demeanor lends nothing new–he still seems vague and distant. Dude, you recently lost 75 million dollars and three mansions, yet no emotional response. Ok. That’s you, I get it. Kanye’s braggadocios, untamed personality shines. The two seemingly contrasting styles of openness from two of the best in their respective fields result in pure comedic gold. Dope video.

My Caribbean’s Mother Cure All

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Chris Rock in one of his critically acclaimed stand up routine discusses how his father solved all problems with…wait for it…Robitussin

Yep, that purple medicine according to Chris Rock’s father was the cure all for any pain, ache, or problem

I have a cold. Get some Robitussin.
I have a broken leg. Rub some Robitussin in the crack.
I can’t read. Drink some Robitussin with a book open.

Robitussin works magic.

Similarly, my mother has a cure all as well, except hers was a phrase she would say whenever any of her three children complained about anything…wait for it…”It’s in your head.”

I don’t feel well. It’s in your head.
I don’t understand chemistry. It’s in your head.
I’m having a tough time dealing with procrastination. It’s in you head.

My mother’s “It in your head,” though annoying and borderline frustrating when predictably heard as the response, is actually correct. We are governed by our thoughts, and the issues that we experience can be changed when we change our thoughts, which my Caribbean mother aptly reduced to the seemingly simple phrase, “It’s in your head.”

The following mini book explains the power of one’s thought. This idea was the basis of the widely popular book, “The Secret.”

What negative thought(s) about yourself or your life do you need to change?
How can you use positive thoughts to change your current situation?
When will you realize that the majority of your problems and conversely their solutions are as my mother would advice, “It’s in your head?”

The Importance of Collections

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“I collected MASH episodes on VHS,” my colleague proudly states. He notices my bewildered look, so he begins to explain. “I recorded each MASH episode from the television…” He shares how he organized the tapes and documented when the different episodes started and ended. He also explains that he used the MASH collection book as a reference to know which episodes he had already taped and which ones he still needed to get. His face, lit with enthusiasm, conveys how much he enjoyed the collecting process. I can only imagine the kind of joy he felt when he completed his collection.

“I threw it out all out though, when they became available on dvd.”

“What? Why did you do that?” another teacher interjects, “It would have been interesting to see your handwriting on the various notes you created to organize your tapes. I’m sure your handwriting and those tapes say a lot about you are and who you were.”

“It seems to be part of human nature to want to collect,” someone contributes.

“Yeah, but there is a difference between collecting and hoarding.”

We all nod in agreement.

I add that I collected X-Men cards. I got my first few cards because my best friend at the time gave me the multiples from his collection. In the beginning, I was stuck with the worst cards. As a result, I haphazardly kept them in my pockets and loosely throughout my Jansport bookbag. Then, the cards started to have value for me; when I bought my first pack, all the cards, regardless of worth or popularity, belonged to me. Also, the cards were numbered in the back, and I suddenly wanted to have the entire collection. I began to trade with others, and buy packs of cards incessantly until I had all of the cards.

Unfortunately, I did not finish the collection, falling a few exclusive cards short of the goal. I lost interest in the seeming fad, and later focused my attention on other things.

What did/do you collect? What do/did your collections say about you, now or at that time? What passions does/did your collection highlight?

Where I Learned About Sex

“Did you father teach you about these things?” the voice on the other end of the receiver questions.

“No,” I respond. My dad wasn’t around and as a result did not teach me anything, I pensively utter to myself in the silos of my brain.

This year, I am teaching health and I am preparing to teach my all male class about the male body. The part of the class that excites me but also causes reoccurring apprehension is the anonymous questions that the students will write and I will answer. Here is a wonderful opportunity for the young men to ask another man questions that they undoubtedly have about the changes in their bodies, hormones, and thoughts. I am honored that I will be able to help them understand their current or soon-to-be-currrent experience. This fact also worries me.

When I think back to my schooling of sexual knowledge, I can only remember one memory. In my middle school, we had sex education classes, I believe, every year. I am sure I cannot remember because I was not overly active in these discussions. In fact, I shied from most conversations about sex at that time because I was embarrassed and uncomfortable with it. I only remember the eighth grade sex-ed class. Mr. Woody, the drama teacher, explained and showed us, a small group of pubescent males with varying levels of sexual knowledge and experience, that putting on a condom was similar to the proper way of putting on a sock; one had to roll it down. Thus, when I think about putting on condoms, his pale white foot and that black church sock (slang for the thin socks worn with dress shoes) that he diligently rolled until his foot was covered dominates my memory.

Outside of that, most of my knowledge about sex came from some not so trustworthy sources: older male friends or acquaintances, rap lyrics, and myths about what sex “should be” heard and shared in various conversations held by different aged people with different experiences. My mom did have the “talk” with me once and we also had a moment about condoms while watching a sitcom while I was a senior in high school. Other than that, no real formal sexual education.

Where did you learn about sex education? Who taught you? Are you satisfied with the lessons that you learned then?

Terrell Owen’s GQ Article

I received an email from a few friends, encouraging me to read Terrell Owen’s recent interview with GQ Magazine.

I decided to write down my thoughts as I were reading it. I included the lines that provoked those thoughts:

“As you’re planning your Super Bowl party this year, give a thought to future Hall of Famer Terrell Ownes. He’s out of work, out of money, and currentlyy in court with all four of his baby mamas.”

  • Four baby mamas. Court. This isn’t going to end well for T.O.

“‘People get busy, you know'” [Terrell explains] when none of his friends return his texts to go bowling.

  • Umm…Terrell, they know you’re financially dried up and they don’t want to pay for your shoe rental. Damn, homie.

“It’s not his knee that’s the problem; it’s his attitude,” says an executive at one of the better teams, who didn’t want to be named.

  • It is do difficult to change one’s reputation and unfortunately he burned bridges in every city he touched…as well as impregnate women in those cities.  I think his attitude has changed though.

“Around each wrist are two-inch-wide rubber bracelets embossed with words in black and white: LOVE ME HATE ME.”

  • Yeah so I take back me last comment. Give me something to work with Terrell.

“I’M IN HELL. That’s what he texts back to people who ask where he is.”

  • Really? All caps, bruh? That morbid response might be why no one wants to go bowling with you…just saying.

“Could he actually be on the verge of admitting he made an error? ‘Well, I probably should have done…,’ he begins, rubbing his hand along the contours of his massive shaved dome. Then he stops himself.”

  • Admit your wrongs, Terrell. Be accountable for your actions. You blame others and want others to acknowledge the wrong that they did to you. At the same time, you have to do the same. More than anything, people want to see that you are sorry for your past wrongs…it’s a sick obsession America has, they want to see your contrition.

“Is he sorry he never got the message that Jerry Rice tried to impart to him back in San Francisco, during the years the two had what is probably the closest Owens has ever known to a father-son relationship (it soured, of course)…”

  • The “of course” stings. Here the bias of the author seeps through and perpetuates a negative image of T.O. and his relationships. No bueno!

“He had a feature role in a small-budget rom-com shot this past spring (he co-stars with Stacey Dash and George Clooney’s current companion, former pro wrestler Stacy Keibler), which will have a limited release in New York and L.A. in February.”

  • Stacy Dash. Has she made any impact on any screen, big or small, since her appearance in Clueless or in Kanye West’s “All Falls Down” video. Nope. And the other co-star, a former pro-wrestler, who is famous for dating George Clooney. Yep. Bad choice for making your featured starring role with those two. I really hope some team gives you a call…but we both know that is not going to happen.

“They may not be ready for me, but me, I’m ready.”

  • Unfortunately Terrell, it may be time to start to look for other jobs. I think you would be a wonderful color commenter; you have to be better than Shaq. Get that steady paycheck in your pocket so that you can afford to pay that back child support. Lastly, see your youngest son; I know you hate his mother, but that young boy did nothing to you and deserves to at least see the face of his father. Be responsible for actions.