When people on the internet equate the words of a writer’s protagonist with the words of said writer, I wonder if they actually do read critically. And it thoroughly depresses me and makes me want to finish this work-in-progress and bind it in leather and hide it because its protagonist is literally a boy who spends five chapters frustrated by the fact that his space tries to convince him that an anti-black hate crime is his business, and that means that, by Tumblr’s twisted logic, I believe that youth of the African diaspora should never be asked to take stock of the racist status quo’s effects on their lives. 

Which is silly. 

I wish Tumblr didn’t so often mistake ‘this person did something wrong on purpose’ and ‘this person tried to have a nuanced conversation about human beings and their arguably mistaken actions in relation to each other’ for the same thing. 

Make Something Worthwhile

So the above - a basic, quickly-scribbled comic script - was on my mind a few hours ago, and I scribbled it out in part because I wanted touyarambles to see it. Not because it’d be great work or anything (although I think it would be, I dare say). But because it’s something that has been on my mind, and I think I’ve ideally captured one of the things I think he’d say. 

Thoughts about this, in brief: 

  1. Once upon a time, if I can share this, Touya and I toyed with the idea of a webcomic. It didn’t work out how he wanted, and as a result never came to fruition, and that was totally my fault. In part, in hindsight, that was because I didn’t know where to start. I had this screwed-up notion in my head that if I just started with a good punchline in the first strip, eventually it would just organically cascade into a well-developed story. Which is not how I write anything else, so why the hell did I make that mistake here? 
  2. So I tried figuring out what it would have had to be about, long after we had already agreed that it probably was never going to happen again no matter how badly we wanted it. And I wanted all the characters we imagined to have some central theme of some sort, some general interpersonal conflict that represented itself in different ways for each of them, that they wrestled with both solo and as a team, and that their attempts brought them closer together and closer to an answer, even if they hadn’t exactly solved all of their problems. 
  3. Randomly, that notion came to mind today: 
    adulthood. Responsibility. Identity. Purpose. Desire. Drive. Combating the fear of failure, staving off debilitating self-doubt, loving oneself wholly and unashamedly. Because adulthood is hard. If we could all just curl up in bed for months without consequence, we probably would. Sometimes we hate the work we make for ourselves, and sometimes we hate the others we make work for. Sometimes we just want to be kids again. Sometimes we don’t know what to do about something people just expect you to be able to figure out once you’re over eighteen. Sometimes you find yourself in a mess you wouldn’t have even imagined in high school. And worst of all, you eventually kind of realize that all you want is the same no matter what age you are - to be appreciated. And you feel like that’s hard work to pull off. There are no ‘do you like me? y/n’ checkboxes for adulthood. 

I like that, I think. Trying to talk about the kinds of fears we have about the responsibilities of adulthood. 

Not like that’s something we can tinker with now. I don’t think we have the time. I wish we did. We have other, just as awesome things in store, though - things I have no intention of screwing up. 

But I guess I’m really sharing this with Touya for two reasons: 

  1. hey Touya I’m sorry I fucked up and I know I’ve probably killed this idea dead but I think I finally figured out what I wanted to do with it; and 
  2. hey. Touya. This thing here - about making something worthwhile, about being proud of what I make, about sharing it with people I love - is something I learned in part from you. And I value that lesson a lot. Thanks. 

Little Dragon | Klapp Klapp (Swindle remix)

Looking at some of the music albums coming out in May for an article I’m writing, and I’m legit up right now at past two in the morning whispering to myself, “I’m so disappointed right now… so disappointed…”

16: when dark-skinned girls have to vape in a video just to think Chris Brown is worth shit enough to stick around in the gotdamn video (These Dawgs Ain’t Loyal)

(Someone tell Lil Wayne 
buy a vowel 
and stop calling me ‘baby’) 

When a rude nigga want ya 
and the rap game can’t do nothin’ for ya 
these dawgs ain’t loyal 
(don’t know) these girls still royal 

Trying to stay the same
I could opt out of the game
I could make a thug nigga tame 
but all these thug niggas lame 

tried to teach a dawg but go figure 
that if you call Chris Brown ‘hitta’ 
he’ll get hype if you say ‘Jigga’ 
shading all circles from ‘thug’ to triggers 

he wanna get love (get love) 
Chris just want a hug (a hug) 
but he done screwed up 
getting stood up at the club

they think they can dance in quick paces 
to get back into queen’s good graces 
but there ain’t no footwork enough 
to forget fists, right? tough… 

come on, come on, man, 
why you frontin’? 
brutha, you ain’t nothin’; 
suit and tie don’t mean you there yet, 
all the lyrics won’t make us forget; 
come on, come on, man, 
why you frontin’? 
brutha, you ain’t nothin’; 
you done tried to hide your wicked 
but you still want a girl to kick it? 

ladies, when a rude nigga want ya 
and the rap game can’t do nothin’ for ya 
these dawgs ain’t loyal 
(can’t see) these girls still royal…