Dear Azealia: You’re a hypocritical bitch, BUT YOUR MUSIC THO.

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There is no other feeling quite like the euphoria of blocking out the noise of world. Car horns, a work call on my day off, a burning slur spewed by a passerby on the street — these things are inevitable (the latter more-so for flamboyant folks.) No matter where I am located, what I am doing, or how I feel emotionally, hearing a favorite song — regardless of its tone or mood — entices me with a memory…a particular moment in time.

My first introduction to Azealia Banks was in September of 2012. My good friend in college, whose R&B fever I embraced and to which I related (my white mother blared Prince, Aaliyah, Janet, Whitney, Brandy, Luther, and more throughout my adolescence), one day asked me, “Have you seen the 1991 video yet??” I hadn’t, nor did I know who Azealia was. After watching the video the first time, my initial thought was, “…so unique…so talented and unapologetic.” Later, I thought, “That gay backup dancer should have had more time on camera…” Later that night as I lie in bed, I watched the video well over a dozen or two times, learning all the words to the song. “Who are you, nigga? Ha ha ha!” I was hooked.

A few months later, tragedy struck. Azealia remixed Baauer’s smash (but only tolerable for thirty seconds) hit, “Harlem Shake”, adding her own flare that (now) makes the entire song worth listening to over and over again. Soon after the remix’s release, Baauer removed the song from SoundCloud, telling the Harlem rapper on Twitter, “…it’s not ur song lol”.



A few days later, Diplo (who signed Baauer to his Mad Decent label in 2012) emailed Azealia explaining why she couldn’t use the track…


The drama continued at an upward trajectory as time passed. At the end of 2014, Azealia renamed Iggy Azalea, “Igloo Australia…”, calling her out for thinking “Black Culture is cool” but not speaking up on “black issues”. Azealia also called T.I. a “coon” for associating with Iggy, whom she thinks is appropriating black culture. (For the sake of time and relevancy, I’ll save my thoughts on little Igloo for another time.) Banks has since called out Kendrick Lamar, Eminem, the BET Awards, black media and more for their own individual “wrongdoings”.

For the first time in my life, I am torn between an artist and her music. Azealia’s music is unique and innovative — her accent and quick tongue, combined with her lyrics and the production, make her music a contender for the best, ever. Then you have Azealia herself. The artist. The “angry bitch”. The drama queen. The woman — no, the whiny little girl — who would rather call someone out publicly (for publicity) than confront them directly.

For the record, I don’t think Azealia is actually a “bitch”. She is angry. She is passionate. She thinks black culture is being taken away and exploited and capitalized by white people who couldn’t care less about black people or black issues. Babe, I FEEL YOU. Cops kill innocent black children without even blinking. Money-hungry lawyers trick mentally-ill, dying black women into selling them her lawsuit winnings for 11% of their value. Racism is alive and well in this country, and it’s fucked up.

The thing is, Azealia, using discrimination to fight discrimination doesn’t help progress the human race. It merely makes your anger hypocritical and your passion a lie. I’m referring to her recent scene on an airplane, when she got angry at a couple for (allegedly) compiling their bags and not allowing her to pass. When a flight attendant got involved, she called him a “fucking faggot”.  Azealia also called Perez Hilton a “faggot” in 2014, justifying the slur by positioning her definition of the word as a “…coward, liar, backstabber…….”  NO, DEAR. THE DEFINITION OF THOSE WORDS — coward, liar, backstabber — ARE THOSE WORDS.

I recently wrote a piece about gay, white men being inherently racist. Confusingly, they certainly wouldn’t want Azealia or anyone calling them a faggot (despite their Grindr profiles basically reading “whites only”.) Similarly, Ms. Banks, you expect reparations for the mistreatment of blacks as slaves, yet you continue to use words with demeaning connotations – “faggot” or “pussy” or “coon” – in a hateful manner to promote your own confused agenda. I use the word “faggot” — hell, my handle on Instagram is “callmefag”. But I don’t use this or any other word to promote anger or hatred against another person.

Racism, misogyny, homophobia…all are a result of bigotry and confusion — a hatred that typically isn’t actually understood by the offender. I don’t know if Azealia understands her bigotry or anger, or if all of this is an act for attention. Whatever it is, I’ve ignored it up to this point to focus on the way her music makes me feel. When Broke with Expensive Taste came out last year, I watched the Chasing Time video dozens of times. At one point, I became super emotional watching it, pondering why such a talented person did not receive the type of media attention or praise as other, less talented artists. But now, in a turn of events I never expected, her shitty attitude is finally beginning to overshadow her musical talent. As much as I hate it, The Ice Princess may soon lose the Luxury of my Heavy Metal and Reflective coins. She Fuck(ed) Up the Fun, y’all!

In a 2012 interview with Hypetrak, Azealia stated, “I would eventually like to stop rappingThat’s just the honest truth. Like one day I don’t wanna rap anymore just because it’s easy you know what I mean, but it’s kind of tacky and I think it’s very unladylike. I like it, but I think I’m going to get tired of it. I would like to get two albums out. Like get all of the urban stuff like rap music out. Whatever ideas I have in me out and into fruition the maybe go back to school. Take voice lessons again and do like contemporary jazz. I definitely don’t see myself being a rapper forever.” Is clambering out of the rap industry by flying an airplane of controversy into Twin Toppers the right venture? Does she want the low-hanging shade of “that bitch” for the rest of her career? Whether me or you or Igloo ever support this Bitch With Questionable Taste, I’m sure we’ll continue hearing about her in the press. For the sake of great music – her music – I hope she keeps rapping, and breaks news headlines titled, “Azealia Banks Volunteers at Local School, Proves How Easy It Is to Help Move the World Forward.” instead of, “Azealia Banks Calls Someone Else a Faggot”, or, “Coons! Azealia Banks Finds Another One”.

Courtesy of Vevo

Courtesy of Vevo


9 Tips for Millennial Car-Buyers


Buying a car is fucking terrifying. Especially if you’re a twenty-something retail employee who, instead of building a savings account, spent $500 this month on beer, cigarettes, brunch, and some molly (hey, it was your birthday!) There are countless stress-inducing factors that require your attention before (and, usually during) car ownership — including, but not limited to: down-payment, enduring the stereotypical pushy salesman, vehicular body-repair (because let’s face it…living in a big city like ice-princess Chicago or hilly-ass San Francisco entitles you to dings and dents no matter how careful you are), and so on.

While we cannot control outside elements, we can control ourselves by racing ahead of and popping the zits of car ownership before they produce a nasty bubble…of anxiety! Here are nine tips to get you ghost-riding the whip in no time:

1• Get loan approval from a bank before going to the dealership

Salesman know how to fuck you. They know you’re “just looking”. They know they can coerce you into buying if they try hard enough. If you don’t say “I’m pre-approved for a loan”, they will try even harder to win you over so you finance within the dealership — which typically yields a much higher interest rate than your bank. My current interest rate is 4.64% — which isn’t horrible, but it sure isn’t flawless. For perspective, if I had done some research and applied for a loan through Capital One and taken that offer to the dealership, I would be saving about $500 a year on interest (a month’s worth of molly and alcohol!)

2• Consider hybrid, diesel, or conventional gas powertrains based on your lifestyle

I’ve always been intrigued by diesel engines. They offer more torque (from-a-stop power) than similar-sized conventional gas engines, and tend to beat the EPA fuel-economy ratings. For example, my car is rated at 31-city/43-highway miles per gallon (which is fucking amaze-balls). If I’m in a suburb or non-urban area, I can easily reach or surpass the city rating. On the highway, even at speeds of 80mph with the windows and sunroof open, I can still average 45mpg — even higher when I slow down and keep steady at 65mph. In Chicago, however, with so much traffic and stop and go, my city number lives anywhere from 22-26mpg.

If you live in a highly-populated city with a lot of stop-and-go traffic, hybrids tend to be a lot more efficient because their engines cease at low speeds, letting the battery-pack take over and power the vehicle for sporadic moments. For example, the average mileage of a 2015 Toyota Prius, per crowd-sourced website, is 47mpg. To be fair, Priis and Golfs are very different automobiles — one is the poster child for economic-minded folks, while one is a German sports hatchback. As tough as it is to go against Ms. Vida Boheme’s wishes of style vs. substance, try to mix the two (and add in some “value”).

3• Test drive vehicles at more than one dealership

Before arriving to the dealership, I was 90% set on the vehicle I wanted (a 2015 Volkswagen TDI SEL). There were, however, other vehicles by other manufacturers which caught my eye, as well. A Nissan Altima, Acura TLX, and Kia Optima-Hybrid were other contenders. However, after giving control to the salesman by arriving to the dealership unprepared, he knew just what he needed to lower the price enough to get me to sign on the spot. I love (almost) everything about my car, but I surely could have given others a look-over before signing a 72 month contract. Additionally, other dealers could have lower interest rates.

Finance aside, test the cars’ functions. Open/close doors and windows. Lean on the armrests. Test how easily your phone connects via Bluetooth. Check for a power outlet or USB port (After buying my car, I learned Volkswagens typically don’t have USB ports, but instead these unnecessary “MDI” inputs that require a special cable.) A vehicle brand or model that initially catches your eye may not always rub you the right way.

4• A large down payment is not required.

The years prior to buying my first (new) car, I went online to build and configure ones I wanted. A part of this process included calculating how much it would cost over the course of 60 months. The vehicles were nothing fancy — usually priced anywhere from $27,000 to $35,000 (the cost of the average school loan). It seemed that reasonable monthly payments based on my income — around $300/month — were only attainable if I put down $4 to $7-thousand. My monthly payment is significantly higher than that now (about $470 a month), but I only put down $1,500. If you have extra money each month, you can pay that against your premium and lower the amount you pay on interest, saving hundreds of dollars over the coarse of the loan.

5• Tease the salesman for awhile, then offer to leave

Milk that test drive. Take the car all over the city. Get to know your salesman. Then, after at least an hour of chit-chat, driving, and offering how much you’re willing to spend, say you’re going to test drive other vehicles at other dealerships that day. The salesman knows that if you leave the dealership, the likelihood of you coming back drops significantly. Once he or she thinks they have you in their grasp, say, “bitch, biyeeeeee.” Me doing this was by no means a strategic move in some game I was playing. I legitimately wanted to explore other options. However, the salesman did everything in his power to keep me there. This included bringing a “Manager” into the conversation, who lowered the total price of the car over $3,000.

6• Buy near the end of the year

Or the end of the month. Dealerships will do anything to beat their sales forecast or, more commonly, move a certain number of units by a certain date. Because of this, they are willing to give you a great price just to get the car the fuck out of their sight.

7• Plan for dings, dents, and fluctuating insurance costs

Sure, new vehicles come with a number of warranties — paint/rust, powertrain, etc. However, most cosmetic issues, such as a flat tire or dented rim as a result of the poorly attended-to Chicago streets, typically require an additional warranty through the dealer (or paying out of pocket after something bad happens). In the 7 months I’ve owned my car, my OCD-ass visited a body shop numerous times, including once when the repair-facility fucked up the paint after removing a $600 dent. If you can, put money aside for wear-and-tear expenses — driving for Lyft helps a lot (my referral code is right chere).

8• Read blogs to determine if the next model year will sport sexier features

My model-year Golf underwent a major redesign from the previous version. It looks sleeker, more modern, and has more interior room than its predecessor. Despite this, I recently learned the next model, coming out in 2016, has upgraded safety features like blind-spot detection, and CarPlay for iOS devices (STILL CRYING ABOUT THIS). Again, I love my car, but I can’t help but feel a little duped. Cars.comCar and Driver and Autoblog are great resources for acquiring information before (or immediately following) the dealer announcing it publicly.

9• Fucking wash it

The time and money required to wash your car — especially if you live in a rainy or tree-laden city — is worth it in the long run. Tree sap, bird droppings and other liquid devils can eat through the protective-coating on the paint, causing discoloration and/or rust. As I’ve learned, paint and body damage is not cheap. Splurge on a Groupon or LivingSocial car wash package and keep momma clean.

Processed with Rookie

Processed with Rookie