The book begins with promise. That would be the hand of editors. His philosophical flourishes at the beginning and end descend into and emerge from a profanity laden, morally blind, street world of Queens, NYC. If you've never read a book in a different vernacular or full of profanity, then you'll have a hard time reading this one. However, sometimes you are able to self-edit the language. You're eyes become skipping-stones, jumping around the f*bombs to the pertinent subjects and verbs. As the rate of 'F's increases, the pertinent subjects and verbs decrease. Thus, I was able to plow through the book in about 3-4 hours. A more sensitive reader would probably have come to a log jam midway through. But then they would not be reading 50 Cent's biography either.
Remarkable circumstances can produce two sorts of remarkable people. Those who succumb to their circumstances in remarkable waste and lethargy and those who overcome their circumstances through remarkable industry. 50 Cent grew up in remarkable circumstances and hustled with remarkable industry. His mother was a drug dealer. He lived with his aunts and uncles, all of whom were drug users. The only working folks he knew growing up were dealers. When he was eleven one of those friendly dealers gave him some pieces of crack to sell for him. He was eleven when he started pushing. It was the only thing he knew and the only thing he would know for some time. The story follows Curtis from Pieces to Weight, which are larger blocks of drugs, such as kilos.
Dominant Themes: Hustle, Feel
Hustling defines Curtis's life. This was how he moved from pieces to weight and how he went from unknown to world renowned in the music industry. "Burning the candle at both ends" is a common phrase in the book. He tells of times he slept on the bench and sold drugs late into the evening and early the next morning, never leaving. Just hustling. 50 draws parallels from his own definition of hustle to that great Puritan work ethic upon which this nation was built. In effect, he's right. He only knew dealing, so he dealt drugs with all his might. Far from admirable, it nonetheless ought to put before us Christians a reminder of Jesus who "burnt the candle at both ends" for the love of His Father and His flock. Too few of us, myself included, appreciate this sort of work-ethic. If we had pastors willing to work as hard as drug dealers,...hmmm.
"Feel" describes how 50 makes decisions. "I'm not feeling it"; or, "I'm feeling that." 50 claims to be a God-fearing man who appreciates church stuff and believes in right and wrong. But the bottom line moral compass in that young man's life is and has been his feelings. Sometimes you have to do the
That's the bottom line question the world has for the Church: Do you feel me, church-people? Do you feel us?
Well, do you?