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12.23 The Cooler

On “A Christmas Story,” Its Lessons For Hip-Hop & Biggie Smalls

By J. Tinsley / 12.22.11

The holidays are here, and for the male delegation, now marks the time when we should probably begin our Christmas shopping. This time of the year represents everything from family to relaxation to, in recent years, an over saturation of marketing and commercial tactics. That said, Christmas is Christmas and certain people, places and things always tends to make things more festive.

And in my own warped world, the holiday season isn’t officially underway until TBS’ airing of the timeless film, A Christmas Story.

The legacy of the “triple dog dare” may be the movie’s most memorable scene, but the lesson it affords remains deep. Peer pressure is a mothaf*cka, and if not careful, can find yourself in a world trouble. You know, like cheating on a final, robbing a liquor store or sleeping with someone with no condom that was bad business from the jump. Life presents us “triple dog dares” all the damn time. It’s a personal decision if we decide to stick our tounges to the pole or not.

Aside from that, ACS was a bench mark for Hip-Hop and most fail to recognize its teachings. I’m (somewhat) serious.

1. “Loose Lips Sink Ships”

What Did Ralphie Do?: The code of snitching was laid down. Remember, in one of his darker moments, Ralphie sold his friend out with the curse word fiasco. Ask him now, he knew he was wrong, but Hip-Hop took this one lesson and never looked back.

Hip-Hop Comparison: Well, it’s all about whoever you believe “snitched.” That’s a can of worms I’ll refrain from opening. However, we can link Ralphie action as a direct inspiration for the “Stop Snitching” movement – long live Cam’ron’s interview with Anderson Cooper – of the mid 2000′s. Still have your t-shirt?

2. “Fighting Back”

What Did Ralphie Do?: The chips were down, the one present he wanted for Christmas seemed to be all but gone and he had bullies hellbent on making his life a living hell to deal with. Ralphie never backed down and even took it to the streets and gave his bully one of the finest back alley ass whoopings ever recorded on camera.

Hip-Hop Comparison: That sounds like the first coming of Maino if there ever was one. Or maybe even Alfamega (before it all went downhill for him).

3. “From Ashy To Classy”

What Did Ralphie Do?: All Ralphie wanted was a Red Ryder Carbine Action Two-Hundred-Shot Range Model Air Rifle and everyone told him he’d shoot his eye out. No one believed in his vision, but he kept the faith, hustled his parents, teacher and Santa and by the end of the movie Ralphie had achieved everything he set out to.

Hip-Hop Comparision: Does this sound familiar?

“Yeah, this album is dedicated to all the teachers that told me I’d never amount to nothing. To all the people that lived above the buildings that I was hustling in front of that called the police on me when I was just trying to make some money to feed my daughter. And all the niggas in the struggle, you know what I’m saying? It’s all good baby, baby.”

Yes, I didn’t recognize it at first either. Ralphie and The Notorious B.I.G. are one in the same. Symbolically speaking, the rifle and becoming a rap megastar are identical when looking at their respective paths to obtaining them.

In a more serious tone though, enjoy the holidays, folks. Drink (responsibly), be merry, eat, pray for my Dallas Cowboys and enjoy the 12 consecutive hours of basketball come Sunday. Somewhere in between all that, however, find time to watch the greatest Christmas movie ever created on Saturday. There’s a chance you’ll take a life lesson away from it, while also learning about rap music in the process.


TAGSA Christmas StorySMOKE BREAKSpotlightThe Notorious B.I.G.TV/Movies

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