Taking a piss at the library in Chicago.
I hear a guy in one of the stalls rapping about wiping his ass.
I don’t think he was a very good rapper. There was a lot of mumbling as he struggled to rhyme “ass” with “cash”. I wondered if he could pull it off. I don’t think he did.
I finished my piss and glanced over at the stall.
The door was wide open with the rapper standing inside, facing the toilet. He was still mumbling in different voices to some rhythm or beat about wiping his ass and staying clean.
I was surprised to find him standing there. I don’t think he was ever taking a shit during his rap.
I felt a bit embarrassed. I’d made an assumption, and I was wrong.
Maybe he’d have been able to rhyme “ass” with “cash” if he’d been taking a dump. Maybe he could have turned that rap into a huge hit.
But I dont image it turned out that way. Sometimes the inspiration’s got to be real.
Maybe it’s easier – more authentic – maybe the words or rhymes flow smoother when what you’re rapping about is real in the moment. Maybe it’s easier writing or rapping about hunger on an empty stomach instead of one that’s full. Maybe that way the words are more real. And, being more real, they just work.
Maybe I should have offered the rapper that advice.
Then again, what do I know about art?