Reporting from Caribana

As we grow old, we tend to accumulate responsibilities and thus have to pick and chose what we can and cannot do. Hence, those that are married, have kids, are in committed relationships or are incarcerated in prison rarely have the opportunity to get away. And that’s why I decided to write this post; because well, although some of you might not have the opportunity to enjoy Caribana weekend for whatever reason; you can still live it vicariously through me.

Please try to contain yourselves and avoid clapping all in unison to signal your gratitude. Although it is appreciated, it is not necessary.

How can you tell when Caribana Friday has started?

There are multiple signs that one can point to, but the most obvious one involves the police. Anytime you see police officers on their bicycles pulling over a dude that’s driving while indulging himself in the finest ganja Canadian money can buy; you know things are about to get interesting for the remainder of the weekend.

Indeed, that’s when you start noticing all the guys walking around in size extra small wife beaters, to make sure you notice their muscles and tattoos. As far as I’m concerned, if you are going to play it like that, go all out: rub your body with oil. I mean, more often than not, these guys already look ridiculous anyhow right?

Women on the other hand play the same card, but do it differently. They get themselves a top that’s probably two sizes smaller than my boxers and rock it just to make sure you notice their cleavage jumping out and literally talking to you.

What makes this interesting though, is the sheer amount of good looking people that surround you as you walk down Yonge street. Seriously, I took a quick walk and saw a plethora of pretty women that gave me what I call the “half-eye”. It consists of giving someone a quick glance and letting them know you spotted them but then you keep walking and hope they come seek you out. If used properly, the half-eye can be a powerful tool that lures in the bait. And that’s why women are the ones that can get away with using it on the regular.

Needless to say, the streets of downtown Toronto are full of people and every restaurant, pub and bar seemed to be full as I casually walked by them.

This weekend, people from various parts of North America will have several interactions and will also try to extract a little something from the people whose attention they are able to get. I was almost “hustled” in that sense when three women came knocking at my door because they were looking for a bottle opener. Instead of giving me the half-eye, they gave me their full attention and one of them actually said “Thank God” when I opened the door to see what they required.

I advised them I didn’t have their bottle opener and they went on their merry way.

If anyone could have properly previewed this weekend so far it would have been Trey Songz:
“I want the money,
Money and cars,
Cars and the clothes
And the hoes
I just wanna be
I just wanna be successful”

Stay tuned …

Questions or comments? Feel free to leave them in the comments section or you can contact me by email at can also find me on Twitter with the handle name @ShyneIV.

What’s It Like to Lose Your Pimp Game? Drake knows….

Imagine this scenario: it’s 1:00 AM, your girlfriend recently broke things off with you, and you decided to drink a little bit of alcohol while home alone. Consequently, all the emotions that have been lying beneath the surface slowly take over and you no longer recognize yourself in the mirror.

 Society has dictated that as man, you have to be strong, tough and emotionally stable. Thus, it is not permissible to display any sign of perceived emotional weakness for fear that others will pounce on the occasion.

But in this rare occurrence, the emotions are too raw and the pain too deep. This is where most men go when they hit rock bottom as a result of a woman.

The self-doubt, the loss of what once seemed like a confidence that could never be shattered, the inability to trust and the attempt to fix one’s self by overcompensating in other facets of life such as sex, alcohol, drugs, dancing and flirting to name a few.

One of my closest friends once had a huge meltdown a few years ago specifically because he went through that process. This seemingly perfectly sane and normal individual was up in the club feeling sorry for himself and then decided that he was going to stab the man that he thought caused his misfortune (luckily I helped him cool off).

In short, my friend was living the life Drake appears to be living right now; albeit without the money, cars, clothes and hoes.

If anyone’s been paying attention, Drake’s been telling us for the better part of the last two years or so that not having the girl you want can at times put a strain on your life. On Missing You, Drizzy raps:
“I’m scared that every girl I cared for,
Will find a better man
And end up happier
In the long run…”

As much as men hate to admit these things, at times we do wonder where we will be viewed in someone’s life ladder; whether at the bottom, the middle, or at the top. And once those thoughts set in, it’s almost as if inner conflict becomes inevitable. The good memories overshadow the bad ones and almost like an orphan; the feeling of being left behind arises.

Hence, it’s no surprise that Drake has the voice of someone who appears to have trouble moving on. The complicated relationships that people go through in life can weigh on the mind and even occasionally make one bitter, as seen on Replacement Girl:
“Cuz I do things from he M-town,
To the UK
And from Spain back down to Texas,
This album for my fans
But yo this hook is for my ex..”

Hook by Trey Songz:
“This song is for you girl,
You know who you are girl
You only show your face
Cuz you know that I’m a star girl […]
You had your chance now it’s gone
You had a man,
Now you don’t
Back to basics
I think I made it
Ladies make some noise
If you wanna be my replacement girl”

Once a man’s vulnerabilities have been exposed, a fear arises that others could potentially take advantage of him despite the fact that he willingly opens that door to others. Drake shares his insights on Trust Issues:
“You know what I’m sippin’
I teach you how to mix it,
But you’re the only one
Cuz I don’t trust these bitches,
I don’t, I don’t trust these bitches,
They might catch me slippin’
So you’re the only one
Cuz I don’t trust these bitches…”

Typically, the “quick fix” to these issues would be for one to build back up their self-esteem; and the best way men know how to do that is through multiple conquests. Enter Marvin’s Room:
“After a while girl
They all seem the same
I’ve had sex four times this week
I’ll explain…”

Although these songs come at different points in the rapper’s life, they illustrate that even some of the richest people in the world do in fact get lonely and may have a tough time moving on. Whether it be anger, self-pity, a detachment from people or jealousy; the symptoms are more often than not there for all to see when a playa’s lost his pimp game.

And yet, Drake seems to be perfectly at ease with confronting his mack mortality right before our eyes; it’s almost as if he is giving us the playbook on solving the issue. Perhaps men and women alike should pay close attention…

For this could be happening to you. 

Questions or comments? Feel free to leave them in the comments section or you can contact me by email at You can also find me on Twitter with the handle name @ShyneIV.

Sley's Barbershop Chronicles

Sley is an occasional SBG contributor and he decided to grace with one of his soon to be many Barbershop style posts.

As I sit and wait for my laser line up or a clean cut taper or my favorite: I got to hurry and get fresh to def cut. I seen the vision like a 27" Zenith in Technicolor baby! My first installment of the barbershop chronicles.

50 said it best: I'm the topic in every barbershop and beauty salon. Nothing beats the overall feeling going to get a cut. Whether your 5 or 85, stories and gossip go like rice and beans baby!

Of course the bond between the barber and client is pretty special (pause!) This means the following:
-You and the barber know each other on a 1st name basis. Meaning ya'll got each others phone number or ya'll are FB/BBM/IM or whatever type of  social network type of  friendship.
-He already knows what you wanna do with your hair.
-He makes you pass before other clients, because you got it like that. And he makes it happen so smoothly by saying that you had an appointment like Puff Daddy (circa 1994) and Ciroc.
My brother Qwest getting lined up.

With all these brothers in one place the basic convos revolve around the following:
-What's popping tonight or what did you do last night?
-Sports talk
-Reminisce about the good old days when ya'll were young dumb and full of cum. Even doing some Wu-Tang skit of saying what was their favorite year?...mines was 1996!
-Who'd you mack ?(i.e: approached a girl got her digits and well you know the rest...)

The entertainment centre plays the latest movie or Urban music videos. The system is blasting the latest MMG (Maybach Music Group) self-made LP (Huuuuuunnnnghh-Rick Ross ad lib). I'm telling you boy, no better feeling than being at a barbershop!

The funniest feeling is when a femme fatale comes with her kid for a cut and everybody just keep silence and observe how the heels compliment her Eye Candy of the month in XXL frame! Another one is the guys that just pass and shoot the breeze for a while or the ones that come at the last minute thinking he's gonna get a cut, but no love on this day slacker. Good times most definitely.

Well it's my turn now so ya'll stay tuned for Part II... Relate