I’m sure that many of you assume that because I, Bradley Bailey, write for the Yale Daily News that I live a life of superstardom and glamour. Well, my friends, contrary to popular belief, every day after seminar I do not cruise the streets on New Haven in my Hummer filled with video bitches and Cristal. The truth is, I barely have the money to keep my room stocked with Diet Coke. My life is in shambles. All I want is a Cadillac, some dubs, and a couple dozen furs. Is this so much to ask? Apparently Rebecca Dana, editor-in-chief thought so.
“Bradley, I don’t think that’s going to happen, but how about some free pizza?”
“Free pizza does not a hardcore gangsta rap supastar make, Rebecca. Holla!”
“I’m sorry, what did you just say to me?”
Needless to say, the YDN wasn’t coming through for me. I’d have to make other plans. Later that evening I was watching one of those fake news shows on VH1 where they interview Lionel Richie and some celebrity hairstylists on what it’s like to be a rap star. As it turns out, many of today’s most popular rap artists are all image! They rent those houses! They don’t own those cars! They actually pay those women to back their thangs up!
So now, the question becomes, how does one get all that money? The answer is painfully simple: You whore yourself out in the name of capitalism and entrepreneurialism. Done and done! So, when you see my rollin’ on dubs and down High street, you’ll know why. It’s because I no longer own my soul or bodily fluids!
My first thought was an action figure. There’s a Barbie for every season, every race, every income tax bracket, even every conceivable surgical amputation. Why is there not yet a Bradley Barbie? Well, I have an airtight oral contract (oh my!) with the folks at Mattel, and they’ve assured me that by October there will be a loudmouthed, drunken, self-absorbed Bradley Barbie, complete with accessories and a dream house! And yes, it will have genitals.
The second step was an obvious one: a duet with Ashanti. This one didn’t pan out as well as the action figure idea. I was arrested in the lobby of Arista records, but I managed to chuck my demo tape into the elevator right before the rent-a-cops shot me with their tasers, but hey, 50 Cent was shot nine times, so this was nothing. Besides, I called local musician Michelle Shaprow and she agreed to do a disco-remix cover of “Tell Him,” the duet between Celine and Barbra, with me for Battle of the Bands.
Trouble arose however, on opening night when she kicked open the door to my dressing room and starting screaming and throwing furniture talking about how she wanted to sing Barbra’s part! You can imagine my rage. Nothing, and I repeat, NOTHING, comes between me and Barbra. Two hours and fourteen feet of uprooted hair extensions later, she informed me that she was going to do the whole song by herself and that, if I apologized, I’d be allowed to back her up as her “fly girl.” I swayed slowly in the background, holding back my tears and dodging the half-empty bottles of beer being hurled in our direction. Oh Bradley, always a bridesmaid, never a bride.
My final attempt at merchandising came with my own fashion line, “Bailey.” Don’t forget to say it as though you are being celestially edified each time the word leaves your mouth, sort of like you’re whispering it to your lover across a post-apocalyptic black and white landscape. The collection never materialized. There was some customs dispute when we tried to ship my velour tracksuits from Colombia. Also, I wanted fur collars, and those squirrels on Old Campus are too damn fast.
Well, I guess that’s it. I shall never achieve the superstardom of Queen Latifah or J. Lo, at least not before this semester’s up.
Luckily, though, I managed to find a posse at the very least. They’re not much fun on Friday nights, but on Saturdays, they really throw down. So, if you’re around Slifka during the week, drop in on me and my crew. Rep your hood, peeps! Slifka in the house, CHALLAH!!!
Bradley Bailey is a registered trademark of the Yale Bailey News.