“I’m a rapper,” he told you the day you met him. You distinctly remember rolling your eyes, realizing in that moment that most of your romantic nights would be incredibly minimalist, and on your dime. But after meeting another, more motivated (and, not coincidentally, wealthier) local rapper, he started spending more time in the recording studio than in your studio apartment. Now, that slacker has a Twitter with followers in the triple digits, travels with a camera clad posse, and just paid rent with the first check from his new record deal. Congratulations honey. You’re dating a working rapper.
All of a sudden, your relationship takes a sharp turn. Your boyfriend’s new hip hop duo, $upply and Da Man, begins a tour of the local rap underground and you find yourself backstage at seedy venues, sipping backwash from Hennessy bottles and tapping your foot impatiently to the beats of an overcompensating Korean DJ named Pyong-THANG. You’d like to break up with your newly validated beau, but deep down you know he’s a total sweetheart and that there’s a mansion with a Jacuzzi in your future. But how do you get the attention of a man whose career is grounded in self-absorption and a surprising amount of hard work? Here are some of the obstacles you’ll face and the ways to overcome them.
Obstacle 1. The Ass-inine Rhymes
Given their tendency to fasten their lips more often to a bong than a woman, most rappers have poor short term memory, which they remedy by writing their rhymes down in notebooks. This results in your apartment being littered with dozens of composition books, each containing flashes of poetry such as Bitch, I don’t need no chain/ you won’t stray too far/ I fuck like Kurt Cobain/ make you come as you are and Niggas act like Tiggas/ talkin’ ’bout wonderful things/ but they got as many records/ as Lebron’s got rings. Naturally, these aren’t the kind of lyrics your mother would like to hear when you demonstrate your significant other’s musical prowess. But a rapper needs rhymes, and there’s no way you can sensor his creative flow, especially when it discusses such pertinent topics as weed, money, hoes, and a surplus thereof. How do you keep your boyfriend’s raps under wraps?
Solution: Reach for profundity in your man’s music. While $upply crows about the copious amounts of marijuana he inhales every day, consider him a champion of domestic agriculture and the American farmer. His love letters to nameless voluptuous women can be construed as manifestos of female empowerment and an acknowledgement of post-gender normative social mores. And when your father asks about a song called “I Wipe My Black Ass with Green Paper”, tell him that your man is satirizing the 1% by portraying them ironically as selfish, opulent ignoramuses who act like their twenties never ended. For this to work, you really must stress the “ironically” part.
Obstacle 2. The Entourage
$upply and Da Man are a two rapper package, so naturally their posse packs twice as many mooches, each of whom will make your home their own. These fair weather friends will immerse your boyfriend in a pestilent stoner miasma and treat you as if you are more helpless than they act. But being one slacker’s surrogate mom is difficult enough, how will you handle an entire crew of them?
Solution: In this case, fighting fire with fire is the best strategy. Invite some of your most attractive, straightedge friends for a spontaneous counter-kickback, keeping them occupied with captivating and intelligent conversation. Sober folks, especially hot ones, are a pothead’s kryptonite, so your boyfriend and his gang of ganja-connoisseurs will cower like mice upon introduction. Bonus points for inviting equally attractive men into the mix, which will further intimidate the entourage and save your girlfriends from irresistible pick-up lines like “Check out the new grill $upply got me”.
Obstacle 3. Bitches
The only thing true rappers need more than vocal skill and a sense for lyrical rhythm is at least one kick-ass music video. $upply and Da Man know this well, so it shouldn’t surprise you when your man and his partner head to some trash-ridden beach with a camera and some (fake) gold bling to film the video for their first hit single, “No Chain, No Gain”. Unfortunately, you forgot that the lynchpin of every rap video is a plethora of barely clothed women whose only directional notes will be “Fondle him harder, LaTasha”. You’d like to tell him that if he prefers bubble-assed bimbos over your loving, slightly less rotund booty, he can sleep on the sand and not bother coming home. However, you know that no MC ever made it big with a video featuring women clad in overalls, so you watch reluctantly as $upply drives off in a stretch minivan full of the most fecund girls Craigslist has to offer. How do you ensure that he doesn’t make video a reality?
Solution: Mark your territory. I don’t mean peeing on him, but anything that can make your man seem not only taken but too repulsive to steal will deter these bitches for good. Try dulling his razor before he shaves in the morning, causing him to cut himself and appear as though he has herpes. During the shoot, call him repeatedly to ask for filming updates and make sure that he didn’t forget anything important, like his Propecia or sunblock (speak quietly so he’ll have to put you on speaker). Or, even better, go straight to the source; tell the girls that Da Man is the one who gets the pair into clubs while $upply does all of the real work. Their twisted priorities will lead the entire harem away from your beau’s lap and into the grateful arms of his partner.
Obstacle 4. Your New Marketing Job
Keeping you sane throughout this whole ordeal is the crisp white record contract that guarantees your boyfriend’s future in hip-hop, but he hasn’t made it just yet. $upply and Da Man still needs to make a name for itself, which these days means taking to the Internet and whoring the brand. You happen to have a Facebook full of G-funk philistines and the only Twitter account that $upply has ever actually seen, so he asks you to help him spread the good, profane word. But this doesn’t just entail posting the occasional video or demo track. You’ll be expected to wear t-shirts, name-drop in every conversation, and pass out CD’s at strip malls. But you’ve got your own life to live; that nail salon isn’t going to assistant manage itself, after all. How do you help your boyfriend become a star without putting your priorities on hold?
Solution: According to Mad Men, advertising is the kind of business where all of the satisfaction comes from power, so the best way to approach the pimping process is to make others do your dirty work. Find Communications majors at your local public university and offer them unpaid internships doing copy for an up and coming musician. Then, sit back as they perform task after task with nothing but the promise of “a great referral” or “commission” to incentivize them. As $upply and Da Man’s notoriety increases, your man will notice the new veneer of confidence and authority with which you carry yourself, making you seem infinitely more attractive and tightening your grip on his testicles. Keeping $upply pussy-whipped is especially crucial considering your last big obstacle.
Obstacle 5. The Swag
There’s a reason pride is one of the seven deadly sins: it’s fucking obnoxious. Getting a record deal is the shot of self-esteem in $upply’s tattooed arm that will transcend him to new levels of overconfidence. Soon, he’ll believe that every insipid, chauvinistic thought that spills out of his mouth is part of some divine flow. You’ll see him choreograph supposedly iconic dance moves like “The Cerebral Pussy” and “The L.A. River-dance”, which he plans to include in every single video, and his only response to your fits of laughter at the sight of these performances will be “Baby, it’s swag.” This phrase will quickly become reflexive the more you question his behavior, eventually rendering him deaf to your criticism. But whether you like it or not, hip-hop is war, and swag is Kevlar. $upply and Da Man have an image to maintain. How do you make the thug act tolerable without detracting from it?
Solution: If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. To be the next big thing’s bottom bitch you have to look and act the part. Pierce both nipples. Wear Doc Martens EVERYWHERE. Question all authority, whether clear or dubious, and do so as loudly as possible. Perpetually fondle $upply and compliment him for everything. This may not be the answer you were looking for, but it will produce the Audi you were looking for. You have secretly always wanted to be an actress and now is your chance. Remember, you’re just performing; but then again, so is he. When and where you both stop is entirely up to you.