The Difference Between Being a Role Model and An Example of Success

Jay is apparently doing the skirt thing now. Clearly, he is not a role model.

Jay is apparently doing the skirt thing now. Clearly, he is not a role model.

Last week I ended up in a back-and-forth debate about Beyonce and whether or not she was a role model. Somehow, Beysus manages to be everything to everybody and nothing to everybody at the same damn time. It’s amazing how polarizing she is and it’s mostly her own fault. She wants to be all things to all people. She wants to be able to make albums that are personal and talk about gettin’ nutted on in a car via her husband and still be able to be apart of campaigns to not be bossy. Which TO BE CLEAR, I’m not saying that one negates the other people. RE-READ THAT LAST SENTENCE. Just pointing out the extremes here.

I had to have a convo with a womanfriend about this “Ban Bossy” campaign. I honestly didn’t realize that women were outchea being called “bossy” in such negative fashion. But rock rock on. Take back the words. I guess. What it really sounds like is “Ban B*tch” but as was pointed out, it’s hard to make that work on a commercial and universal level. Somewhere, Kelis is kickin’ tires and lightin’ fires, big daddy #bawse

Anyway, the convo stemmed from an article written by LZ Granderson for CNN that specifically talks about the “Partition” video and lyrics and makes mention of the fact that Beyonce – the role model – was on shaky ground.

Beyonce the artist is above reproach. With 17 wins, she has only one less Grammy than Aretha Franklin. She has more than 13 million Twitter followers despite only tweeting eight times. And she famously crashed iTunes by releasing a full CD without any promotion.

However, Beyonce the role model is questionable as hell.

I’m all for handcuffs, hot wax, stripper poles, whips — whatever it is two consenting adults want to do in the privacy of their bedroom to keep the relationship fresh. But increasingly, Beyonce has chosen not to keep such things private.

Those lines spawned a convo that wove its way into Dr. Dre (not a role model) and Jay-Z (also not a role model) to Michelle Obama (role model), etc. But it ultimately comes down to what makes somebody a role model. To be clear, I do think that looking for people to be role models is a bit of a tired art, but nevertheless, this is our society (and every society). People become reluctant role models, outrightly deny being one, or seek the title (as I think Beyonce does).  Truly, your parents (or parent-like people) should be your role models seeing as they are the people with the most interaction and guidance in your life. But we all look up to people we don’t know and will never meet. It’s human nature.

So here’s my take: Jay, while a very clear example of success despite the odds is not really a role model. I tend to view role models as people who strive to show you the way to achieve and succeed in as positive a light as possible. Sure, Jay success is positive. And I’m a huge Jay fan. But you can’t divorce the person from the art that got him there. You just can’t. Same with somebody like Dr. Dre who is remarkably successful and rich who  has made the majority of his fortune weaving tales of rape and murder. I’m an NWA fan but I can’t defend nearly any of the music they ever released on wax. I appreciate from an artistic rebellion rapper standpoint.

But again, they’re great examples of starting from the bottom and now there there. Beyonce is on that line. While she’s clearly the greatest entertainer on the planet right now (FIGHT ME!) she really does want to be a role model as well. She wants to stand for something and show somebody some light. Which I’m all for. Especially after so many years of folks thinking she was a vapid soul just put here to look into the camera with a blank smile and say “I like good things because good things are great!” Personality was great. And she took it to a whole new level with this last album. It felt like her most personal outing yet. Which is also where I think she starts to tow that line too closely.

Granted, all of the sexual agency she’s exhibiting and sharing blah blah blah is coming from a space of a married woman who did everything “right”. She got married, had her kid, and her and her husband are sharing their lives with us…explicitly. And I’m not sure if that’ s role modelesque. Granted, she can make any music she wants (and does). And I get the argument of owning your sexuality as a woman. It’s just that the folks usually looking for role models are younger and I’m not sure I need 12-year-olds listening. Which they shouldn’t be.

I’m also not going to run the lines about the fact that lawyers and doctors, etc are all our role models. They are but they’re not perfect. But role models don’t have to be perfect. They just need to know what to keep to themselves and what to share, pretty much only bringing something to the table worth noticing. Which is why you get so many entertainers not wanting to be role models because they want to speak freely and shoot up strip clubs and be ignorant without worrying about destroying the minds of some impressionable youth. Though, saying you’re not a role model doesn’t stop people from placing you in that role. That’s the gotcha gotcha. I feel like most folks who are actual role models leave little in the way of having to actually debate it. There’s usually no question about it.

For that reason I think most of these folks (entertainers and athletes) are fine examples of making it. But role models? I don’t know. But what do I know, I’m lightskinneded.

What do you y’all think? What makes somebody a role model? Who gets to be one?

Talk to me.

Oh and who would be a role model? Yo mama. No…seriously.

-VSB P aka MR. I’M NOT A ROLE MODEL aka GIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIRL HE A 3

Another Question About Cheating.

I’ve always felt like the wives and girlfriends of athletes and politicians, and well, men in power really got a raw lot in life. I think that they are almost guaranteed to date and/or marry a man who is going to step out on them at some point. Of course, not all athletes, politicians, etc are going to cheat. I know this.

Conversely, they are also privy to many riches and to a status that most people will never know or achieve. And I’m sure that there’s a certain long-term cost-benefit analysis that goes into marrying certain men anyway.

This might be a good place to mention this, I’ve spent time trying to decide if a man who married a politician woman or whatever really felt any type of way about their woman stepping out on them and my guess is that most of us just wouldn’t sweat it. Not that women can’t cheat, obviously they can, I just think that the male mentality of being a woman’s end all be all makes us all think that we’re immune to being cheated on…which is why we totally lose our sh*t when we find out that our woman has cheated on us. Men…we so dumb sometimes. Patriarchy, you’ve got to love it.

Anyway, the point of those few paragraphs above is this: I get the impression that in nearly all of those relationships, the woman says at some point: “do not embarass me.” Basically, wear condoms and be discreet. Remember your family and don’t bring anything home that you didn’t leave with. Nobody wants to be the last person to find out something. In fact, I’m willing to bet all of your paychecks that the main reason a woman won’t stand next to her husband after some scandal breaks is because she found out about it via newspaper or somebody else telling her as opposed to her husband. Nobody likes to be the last to know, but especially if you get questioned about something and have no clue what the asker is talking about.

Don’t embarass me.

Which leads to my main question here: is it worse to be cheated on, or to be the last one to know you got cheated on?

Perhaps this is an easy answer since if you know before everybody else, you can control the release of information better or at least be able to get ahead of the situation. You can make sure that you’re taking care of home and attempt to close out everybody else from speaking on your situation. But that also assumes that cheating is a forgivable offense to begin with, right?

But I don’t know, I mean it definitely makes the act worse if you’re the last to know, but shouldn’t the infidelity by itself be enough of a transgression? Does it even matter how you found out that you got cheated on assuming that its both true and verifiable?

How did this all come up? Believe it or not, I was watching the movie Rio and somehow, during the course of that movie, THAT idea came to my head. For those who haven’t seen Rio, it’s a movie about two blue macaw’s who have to smang in order to preserve the species, except one can’t fly and Jamie Foxx is a yellow bird with a bottle cap hat. Oh, and And I became curious. Is there any connection? Not really. Total non-sequitur? Absolutely. Point is, don’t question my authority.

So, anyway, to the peanut gallery: what’s worse – being cheated on or being the last to know you got cheated on?

Inquiring minds would like to know.

-VSB P aka THE ARSONIST aka MR. NO NO NO aka GIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIRL HE A 3

Shaq Got a #doctorit And All I Got Was This T-Shirt

The Big Ph.D.

So why for come ain’t nobody not tell me that Shaquille O’Neal got a Ph.D. in some Ph.D. sh*t from Barry University?

By the way, that last sentence was brought to you by publicly funded education.

So the homey Cheekie sends me an email talking about Shaq getting his Ph.D. last weekend and I immediately hit her with the virtual Chris from Family Guy, “Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa?”

Let me tell you something. That made me smile. Big and wide. Kind of how I like my white women. With there being so much drama in the LBC, you rarely hear stories about athletes making vast educational achievements. Turns out, the Big Aristotle also has an MBA. Sure its from the University of Phoenix-Online, but hell, do YOU have an MBA…from anywhere? (If you do just shut up and sit there silently as to not destroy my point. Thanks. — Management)

I feel like its very to easy to read article after article about low graduation rates from college for athletes. Especially basketball playing (read ninja-like) athletes. But I’m fairly certain that if it wasn’t for Twitter, I wouldn’t know about Shaq getting a Ph.D. (from Barry University in Miami) in leadership and education with a concentration on human resource development. What does that mean? I don’t know. But I’ll bet the other folks with Ph.D.s in that know.

I feel like stories such as this one should be well reported everywhere. I remember some years ago when Vince Carter decided to possibly miss a playoff game to go to his graduation from UNC. People were in an uproar. How could he not be devoted to his teammates at such a pivotal time. Vince Carter was like, “dude, this is my life. You go to college to walk across the stage and graduate, and that’s what I’m going to do.” I couldn’t be mad at him or blame him. The NBA, is his job. Getting an education is a life goal that so many of us have and that achievement gets acknowledge by walking across the stage so that friends and family can witness what was such a lofty goal for so many of our ancestors.

I also remember some years ago when Myron Rolle, from Florida State, ended up becoming a Rhodes Scholar and decided to go to Oxford for a year and pasing up the NFL draft to get a Master’s degree first. His coaches, some players, and analysts thought he had lost his damn mind, but he was very focused on his education and getting to his ultimate goal of becoming a doctor. He plays in the NFL now. And is well on his way. Hell his Wikipedia page might be the most interesting athlete page ever.

I did a google search trying to find out how many professional athletes have graduate degrees (or hell degrees period) and couldn’t find anything. But if I wanted to know which school didn’t graduate the most athletes I’m sure that’s available (my guess is Kentucky). And this isn’t a race thing. Athletes, especially, professional athletes get credited as being dumb jocks a lot but the truth is that a lot of them (not all, obviously not all) do value getting an education. And finish those degrees. It’s just some rich white man was willing to pay them millions of dollars to hold a ball. I remember telling my father that if I had a chance to play professionally, I’d finish college first and my father looked at me like I was crazy. He said if somebody’s willing to pay you for that, school isn’t going anywhere. So the incentive to roll out is substantial.

But numbers of these guys go back and finish their degrees. Which is why hearing that Shaq has a Ph.D. is such a great story to me. I don’t even know him and I’m proud of him. He knows the value of an education and kept at it. You go Shaq.

I think I wrote all that to just say, “you go Shaq!”

Yay.

So, happy Friday! Um…isn’t that great?

By the way, I do realize the inherent “low standardism” that I displayed by being excited that an athlete actually got a degree. Maybe that says a lot about me. Maybe that says a lot about how I view athletes. N.E.R.D. has a song called “Maybe”.

*takes ball and goes home*

The floor is yours.

-VSB P aka THE ARSONIST aka MR. TAKES BALL AND GOES HOME aka GIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIRL HE A 3

Also, I feel like I should introduce for those who haven’t been, an interesting webseries that I’m sure all of you cubicle-n*ggas can understand and relate too: The Unwritten Rules. Peep the trailer then go check out the two episodes. It’s worth the watch.

The Killer P: Signs That She’ll Probably Put It On You

"Sure babe. I'll steal that necklace from my aunt. Just show me your high school track highlight tape again"

Problem: Queasiness

You’re grossed out by the human body and freak when a girl has leg hair, you spot menstrual blood, etc. Our girl Andrea, 27, tells us, “the yard shouldn’t have to be perfectly groomed for you to play in it.” If you’re verbally or visibly uneasy with the female body or your own, she senses that you’re probably going to be a pretty sterile, unimaginative lay.

The paragraph above is from “Five Moves That Make You Look Bad in Bed (and How to Avoid Them).” And, although the title is a bit misleading — when I saw “Five Moves…” I thought the article would be about actual bad sexual “moves” like “When she’s about to climax, it’s probably not the best idea to grin and pinch your own nipples” — it does offer some sound advice. I assume most women would agree that an easily queasy man is a big turnoff, and it’s not hard to see how a man possessing a few of the other traits listed — indecisiveness, being too fidgety, etc — might tell a woman that he sucks in the sack.

I was originally tempted to write a response titled “Signs That She’s Bad in Bed,” but since I could only think of two (“Her breath stinks” and “She’s a Delta”) I’ve decided to go in another direction, compiling the decades worth of notes from my own experiences as well as my friend’s, and list a few signs that she just might put it on you.

She really, really, really enjoys food

Women who seem to genuinely enjoy the entire food eating process — and you can usually tell these women because they’ll go through mini-orgasms when eating and even talking about their favorite foods — also seem to enjoy the entire sex having process just as much. I don’t know where the correlation is, but my guess is that some women just really like for things to be in their mouths.

She was/is an athlete

Every guy who’s ever dated a former high school or college athlete is nodding his head in solemn agreement and x-ing out this window to scour Facebook and see exactly what the members of the college track team are doing with their lives right now

Men approach her all of the gotdamn time

Now, I’m not talking about random street catcalls or direct messages on Twitter, but women who always seem to get approached by men are usually so popular because they’re subconsciously putting off an “I will curl your toes like fried shrimp” signal.

She doesn’t really sweat things (or people)…ever

As one of my college teammates once told me, “If she’s anal, she won’t do anal.” Now, does it matter that this is the same teammate who eventually got kicked off the team for stealing shower curtains from TJMaxx? I don’t think so.

She once was the governor of Alaska

Hate if you want, but I think a night with she who shall not be named would have you ready to shoot threes and moose and shit too.

Anyway, people of VSB.com, that’s it for me today. Can you think of any other signs that a woman is the shit in the bedroom? Also, ladies, you don’t get to take the day off. Go ahead and list some signs that a man is good in bed. Y’all need to help us out so we can take notes and start pretending.

—The Champ