Posts Tagged ‘Dunk SB’

Down And Out In Dunktown

February 28, 2021

“It was one of the oldest neighborhoods around, but back then, nobody was really trying to live there. Nothing going on, every once in a while somebody would try and hype it up again like, hey, remember this place? Some cool stuff would pop up here and there but it was close to a notorious part of town. Nothing really wrong with the neighborhood itself, but it was more like, outta sight, outta mind.

“Other parts of town got crowded up and too busy, and here and there, people started moving back in. At first it was your typical mix, like young hipsters and sophisticated thirtysomethings. And you could see why, it had that a little bit of a more classic neighborhood vibe, kinda old school feel, for sure simpler than everything going on downtown. So people started moving back, they’d talk about how they’d loved the area all along and all that, and sure enough after a couple years you started to see some high rollers and upper crust types coming in. The vibe was changing no doubt, but you could find a reasonable place if you looked.

“It was still a nice place to be, nothing about the neighborhood itself fundamentally changed, but as the years went by it just started to get really crowded. And the free market did its thing. Rents went up. Bidding wars for coveted spots turned really intense. Different types of rent control programs were tried, some got pretty creative, but people were just getting so crazy with it — hiring programmers to build bots to help them land a spot, offering bribes, assaults, death threats. Kinda funny, since it was the old residents that were supposed to be the riffraff. Some landlords wouldn’t even give out their places’ address, the heat got so intense. But at the end of the day the developers and landlords didn’t turn anybody down, and you know, a lotta business and investment was coming in. Developers would sometimes try and set aside space for the longtime residents, but the same thing would always happen. And it’s starting to happen in other parts of town too.

“People say the bubble’s gonna burst soon, but they’ve said that before, and either way, most of the old locals who made the neighborhood what it was, by now they’re pretty much gone. All the streets, lines and angles are still the same, more or less, and it’s still possible on paper to live there without deep pockets and connects. But hardly anybody sees the point in trying, especially with the kind of money you can get for it if you do somehow land a spot. And there’s plenty of other neighborhoods around, some just as nice, some probably better, some whose roots in the city go even deeper. So this neighborhood’s theirs now, I guess, as long as they can afford it.”

Ohhhhhhhhhh, Ohhhhhhhhhh, Ohhhhhhhhhhhh, Ohhhhhhhhhh

May 5, 2009


“Radio killa”

In the above video for “My Love,” the main single from The-Dream’s critically valued 2009 CD “Love vs. Money” The-Dream attempts to press home the point to a befuddled Mariah Carey that “it takes time to get money,” likely a thankless and futile task given the widely rumored fact that Mariah lost her damn mind back in the Glitter era and could well continue to wander in her own mental wilderness, and you know what else, who fries sausages and eggs in the same pan.

This is one of many themes of control that The-Dream, who seems overweight and may own several houses, explores in “Love vs. Money,” a powerful work that insists upon a man’s place and how he is utlimately powerlessness before the persistence of time when there is money needing to be gotten. Hinting at the two great American eventualities, the fact that The-Dream is willing to lie, cheat, steal and beguile in his pursuit of money probably is beside the point. More critical is the constraints of a mortal life and the limits this inevitably places on money getting and several other activities, including but not limited to Mariah Carey features and R&B beefs with man-about-award-shows Chris Brown, who has vowed to destroy The-Dream’s career at all costs.

Back to the video though, is Mariah Carey’s confusion or refusal to accept The-Dream’s argument intentional? Who can tell — she has suffered from “exhaustion” in the past — but it sure doesn’t make his job any easier. He is a tortured man who is racing against the clock always as he tries to get money and keep Mariah under his thumb. (For the record we all know he is just playing a character, okay)

Nike’s skateboarding division touched similar touchy touchstones in “Nothing But the Truth” a couple years back, in a series of nigh-unwatchable skit segments that rapidly ascended to the top of skateboarding’s most-skipped sections just behind Jordan Richter’s contribution to the Blind video. And rightly so, but I’m not sure Nike got as much credit as they were due for the sheer weirdness (hubris?) involved in that whole effort. Though I have no particular effort to try and wrap my brain around some of those skits ever again when there’s that Landscape video to watch, I do sometimes think about what they were trying to do with that skit where Reese Forbes runs into the fog and returns a different yet still flannelled man entirely.

But as they keep pumping out the internet videos I gotta say I kind of like the way Nike moves, as much as it vaguely saddens me to shuffle into the park and see the swoosh adorning every other kid’s feet. Ten years ago people were coming up to Tony Hawk after the premiere of “The End” and saying they hadn’t seen a video like that since the Bones Brigade era, and I think Nike has the potential to do some similar sort of high-concept thing, provided they rein in whatever ad agency cooks up the theme for their next full-length production.

In the meantime there’s been a slew of sweet clips on their site recently like this “120 minutes”-esque clip with Matt Beach, Al Partenen, Daniel Shimizu and Chet Childress tilting at sketchy warehouse rigs; last week they had this Dan Magee-directed clip from Italy featuring a heap of Euros like the man Luy Pa-Sin, lots of backside flips and interesting angles. The usual complaints about slow-mo HD footage aside, these are alright, but I’ve got higher hopes for their Debacle amateur video, which may or may not be a no-bullshit endeavor with ripping Grant Taylor footage etc. but will be Nike’s first big attempt to redirect their creative ocean-liner after encountering the “NBTT” iceberg. Forecast clear to partly cloudy…