Once I excerpted the following from a New Yorker article and flagged it in a tweet:
“The Odd Future charge has been led by…Tyler Okonma, known as Tyler, the Creator… Hodgy Beats, a diminutive, quick-tempered rapper,… is half of the duo Mellow-Hype, along with [a] producer who calls himself Left Brain. Two more rappers, Domo Genesis and Mike G, are known… Matt Martians makes spaced-out funk. Travis Bennett, known as Taco, and Jasper Dolphin, are members… Taco’s sister, Syd (the Kyd) Bennett,… Christopher (Lonnie) Breaux, known as Frank Ocean… Tyler and the others sometimes referred to Earl Sweatshirt as Thebe — pronounced “TEH-beh… Before Thebe was Earl Sweatshirt, he called himself Sly, short for Sly Tendencies… One of his friends… was Solomon Allison, who produces hip-hop under the name Loofy….” (Kelefa Sanneh, “Where’s Earl?”, The New Yorker, May 23, 2011)
I followed up with a pastiche which I can’t summon the effrontery to reproduce verbatim. In it my rap persona declares he riffs under the name ‘Pokehole,’ but “when rilly freestylin'” becomes ‘High Plains Vaquero’ and has a “high-fivin’ posse.” He’s ‘Milknickel’ when drafting, and ‘Doctor Skull’ when “the PHuDs get funky.” It doesn’t get better.
By inserting pidgin Spanish into the mix — “ricacho,” “macho muchacho,” “no manches,” “chiste,” “comprendiste” — as well as a smidgin of hackerese — “grok my kludges” — I invited in one swell foop disgust and mockery from at least three constituencies.
Sure enough, another Twitterer sent me an “Oh dear” message: I was getting nasty blowback. Who knew? I had zilch followers. I closed my two-month-old Twitter account and took a powder.
(Copyright 2018 James Mansfield Nichols. All rights reserved.)