Tag: Treasurechest’s Blog

Treasurechest’s Blog #10: Don’t Gas Yourself…

RTC and De La Soul

“Don’t Gas Yourself Ack, The Industry’s Just A Better Built Cell-Block…”

Mos Def: “Hip Hop”

[audio: http://rubyhornet.com/media/rh/music/mos_def_hip_hop.mp3|width=180]

I definitely learned some valuable lessons over the last week about how the music industry, and the Chicago “scene” works in particular.  Ups and downs are a normal part of any profession, but for anyone who rides a high too much or lets a down drag them way down, entertainment, fashion, music, can be a tough road.  I’ve learned the hard way about both, and currently don’t get too gassed when something goes right, and have learned to shrug off something going kind of wrong.  Another thing that I’ve seen is appearance substituting for work, and when that happens, and you get caught up in going to all the parties etc…your work, or at least my work, my writing, my interviews, my networking, can and does suffer.  This weekend pretty much put all of that into a microcosm for me, and on the other end of it now, I feel like I’ve regained part of myself, the part that wanted to do all this in the beginning.

Treasurechest’s Blog #9: Sleep When I’m Dead

DJ RTCTeaching

“I was so much older then, I’m younger than that now,” sings Bob Dylan in “My Back Pages”.  In all honesty, I had to look up that song’s name prior to writing this and can’t readily recall any of the other lyrics.  But, for some reason, that one line has stuck with me since I can remember (maybe because it repeats throughout the song), and lately I’ve been thinking about it more and more.  When I was 21 years old I graduated from college, turned 22 a couple days later, and then went directly into the Teach For America program where I taught elementary school for three years on Chicago’s South side.  I didn’t really know what I signed up for.  I knew it involved teaching, that it would require a tremendous amount of work, but I really did not know the full extent until I got to the Summer Institute Training, which I refer to as Teacher’s Boot Camp. I went out to L.A. and taught second grade in Compton, while taking classes and training sessions.  I’m not going to go into the details, or write about my day to day classroom experiences once I got home and started my real job in Chicago’s Englewood (that’s for a forthcoming book).  However, I will say that I was in L.A. when it all hit me, and that Bob Dylan line popped back into my consciousness.  I remember telling my friends at the time, “I can’t wait to be 24, and be young again.”  What hit me, like a ton of bricks, was the fact that there would be no post-college “lounging around” for me.  I didn’t hit one Monday @ Evil Olive (or 2005 equivalent).  I never went out on a Thursday night, and only went to school with a little hangover once, it was extremely painful, and I never let it happen again.  

I think about that period from time to time, and it’s almost shocking to me how different my life is now.  As a teacher, I lived a very disciplined life.  I went to bed early, got up early, and had a focused routine of going to the gym after school, cooking dinner, and planning for the next day.  I squeezed in time for writing, doing interviews, and DJing, but when I started dating another teacher, I realized that something had to be cut and I took about a year off from the turntables.  I wore a tie to work everyday, and regularly had conference calls with parents, adopted character voices for the morning “Read-Aloud”, submitted to performance reviews, and attended workshops…Anyway, my point is not about teaching…Rather, it’s that I’m about to turn 27, and feel much younger than I did at 22, something like the Bob Dylan quote above.  I don’t exactly know what that means yet, or even if it’s a bad thing.  It just is…

Also, since April is National Poetry Month, I thought I’d switch things up a little bit and share a poem that I wrote during my teaching experience, and that I re-read over the weekend.  The piece is called “Sleep When I’m Dead”…Check it out…

RTC: Treasurechest’s Blog #7


I got a pocket full of money…looking all bummy…That’s pretty much my mood right now, and yes that is both my Grover hand puppet and turntable setup.  It’s been raining the past couple of days, and I’ve been rocking rip jeans, a tee shirt, and my Hyde Park hoodie.  That’s also the first time I’ve written about what I’ve been wearing, and, sadly, it will most likely be the last one as well.  I am also listening to Shootenanny!, the 2003 LP by The Eels.  If you’re unfamiliar, it’s a smooth LP full of the right mix of optimism, heartbreak, and sadness. My favorite song on the album is “Lone Wolf”…

RTC: Treasurechest’s Blog #6

I just got a copy of the Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack in the mail, so I got that going for me…Other than that, it’s been kind of a low key Monday for me.  I originally wanted to take a day off, but Naledge and Dre both reminded me that the internet does not stop cause there are always people like them that go on RH @ 3AM and wonder why the site’s not been updated in the last couple hours…Anyway, the reason for my slowness today goes back to last week Thursday and the first of what seemed to be like 8 birthday parties for my main man, Virgil Solis, aka Benny Rocs.  We took the party to Empire Liquors where I DJ’ed a small set with Willy Joy and DJ Major Taylor.  The place was packed and our girl Nina was also there celebrating her birthday…Let me just say that I dropped “Birthday Sex” and I believe both of them had a good time…

RTC: Treasurechest’s Blog #5

Clark Kent


This is my Clark Kent blog.  A real good guy, Clark Kent was.  Stand out journalist, dedicated truth seeker, great friend, modest, and really knew how to keep a secret. I have a pair of glasses that I don’t wear that much, that are Clark Kent-ish.  I bought them when I was a freshmen in college. I always resisted glasses before that, but I couldn’t read the overhead in Dr. Weiskopf’s Psych 101 and decided it was time to see clearly.  At the time, I felt like thick black glasses were the way to go because if I was going to wear glasses, I wasn’t going to play around and try to camoflauge or get too cute, just give me the black frames…I’m wearing glasses dammit!

RTC: Treasurechest’s Blog #4

rtc and br

I want begin by saying…shut the f**k up…let me begin my saying…please stop tagging me in facebook pictures and videos that I’m not in.  This is annoying as hell, and I don’t really think it helps your cause.  Not to belittle myself, but you’re got going to get too many extra clicks on your computer camera made freestyle, or party pictures because I’m tagged in them…Now with that out of the way, let’s start blog #4. 

RTC: Treasurechest’s Blog #3


I was going to start this blog on a bad note about how sick I got this week, and how I had to miss our night at Angels and Kings, which many of you went to and sent me texts asking if I could get you in and/or why I wasn’t there…Well, try to tell a fever, chills, and cough that you got to go to Angels and Kings…Anyway, I’m still feeling pretty sick, but just got a press release that Blink 182 is back!  So everything is awesome again.  I mean, Blink 182…All three of them…Making sappy love songs that don’t really rhyme and seem to be about the same breakup just alternating between 6 or so guitar chords and the lead vocals…Can the world get much better?  I can’t front though, Blink 182 got a lot of play at MPA back in the day, and I had an album or two, which brings me to my next point…Anyone want to buy some used CDs? 

RTC: Treasurechest’s Blog #2

RTC and Shala

It’s Sunday night, the Steelers just beat the Cardinals for their record 6th Superbowl win and you can the official tees/hats are eco-friendly…Awesome. Anyway, this is number 2 of the RTC blog…I only got about 6 more months til I catch Naledge…For those wondering, T-Mobile managed to keep me on their network all week, they still have yet to offer me a proper apology though. I watched the Superbowl back in Hyde Park at my parents’ house, ate a lot of good food, and played with the dog for the first time in about 3 weeks. It was definitely a well-needed chance to relax. Last night RubyHornet and Brainiac Society took over Lava Lounge as part of dubFrequency’s Creme De La Creme. I DJ’ed with Willy Joy for the first time. For those unfamiliar, Willy Joy is pretty nice on the 1’s and 2’s and absolutely spazzed out at the Evil Olive on Monday…He’s also the only DJ I’ve seen that keeps a box of blueberries next to his turntables. People are bringing me shots, beer, champagne, and this dude has fruit, I gotta get on that tip (no homo)…Willy did his thing and then I got on in the late night slot. It was a lot of fun, and Lava Lounge filled up quite nicely. Thanks to everyone who came out including Simeon of The Primeridian, Noah Banks, Skyler, Fooch, The Smash Bros. Special thanks to Michelle and definitely Brian who had my back all night, lol…