Mychal Denzel Smith


What Generation Overshare Can Learn From Biggie

My generation has come of age with hip hop, and we’ve borrowed the language of illegal hustlers to describe our legal hustles.

In our weekly Hustlin' series, we go beyond the pitying articles about recession-era youth and illuminate ways our generation is coping. The last few years may have been a rude awakening, but we're surviving. Here's how.

I’ve listened to The Notorious B.I.G.’s “Ten Crack Commandments” hundreds of times, and I always envision him delivering the lines to a group of fresh-faced young hustlers in a smoke-filled room where everyone speaks in hushed tones. “I’ve been in this game for years, it made me an animal, its rules to the shit, I wrote me a manual,” he opens, with the huskiness of experience, then proceeds to break down the game for all those in earshot. You have to listen closely, because he isn’t one to repeat himself, and if you don’t catch the science he’s dropping there’s no doubt you’ll find yourself in serious shit.

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