The Khalil Amani Reader

Hip-hop/Spirituality/Freethinking. Speaking for all underdogs!

Midlife Crisis or Born Stunna?

By Khalil Amani

As I’ve become a “man of a certain age” (57) I’ve had the opportunity to reflect on my own mortality—the realization that I’m getting old. Looking around, I see my brothers and cousins and friends of a similar age getting older too.

As I’ve gotten older I hear younger people address me as “Sir” and my mind gets all discombobulated like, “Who’s he talking to? I ain’t no sir!” My mind has not wrapped itself around the concept that, to younger people, I look old! Im my mind I’m somewhere in the neighborhood of 30.

The proof that young people see me as old recently reared its ugly head a few weeks ago. There I was in Orlando for a family funeral. Some of my 20-something year old cousins were talking about hitting up a club and I quickly spoke up and said I was down for the party. They laughed at me as though I was out of my damned mind, but sho’ enough, I rolled with them to the club that night and as far as I could tell, I fit right in—gray beard and all!

I don’t act old and I don’t dress old! I’m like that white dude in the movie, “Malibu’s Most Wanted” who acts black has adopted black aesthetics. White boy rocked the bandana, jewelry, slang, swag and feigned like he was the hardest rapper in Malibu, a rich city in Cali. His dad tried to pay some black actors to “scare the black out of him” for the sake of his political campaign. The son had become an embarrassment to his yuppie parents. But alas! That’s who he really was—a white boy who had ingratiated himself—culture vultured his way into hip-hop/black culture.

Sometimes I feel like I’m a culture vulture—an interloper in hip-hop when I find myself at a rap concert or a hip-hop club and young heads get to looking at me sideways like, “Shouldn’t you be home in bed—or in a rocking chair?”

Young people have never been old, but feel like they know how old people should act and dress and where we should go and what music we should like, but I’m telling you—there’s a paradigm shift in how old people of this generation carry themselves. Jay-Z first said it best; “30 is the new 20,” so what does that make 50—or 60—or even 70? I say 57 is the new 37!

If there be such a thingy as “Midlife Crisis,” I know nothing about that! Yes! I presume that there are middle-aged men who are mired down in the mundane existence of family, children and marriage—and a dead-end job. I’m sure there are guys that envy that single man’s life—a life where he can go out all night, hit the after-hours spots, run up in some stank-box vagina till 5 a.m. and as soon as he drops that nut, look for his shoes & drawhs and hit the door with excuses as to why he can’t stay and cuddle. “‘Cause I’m single bitch! I don’t love those hos!” (In his Snoop voice)

I'm sure women go through midlife crisis too (or is that menopause), but I can't speak on that.

Indeed, I lived that single life and used to have at least 3 or 4 chicks at my beck & call. Different women provide a single man different emotions and feelings and desires. One woman is a great cook, but her sex might be so-so. Another woman can’t cook for shit, but her fuck-game boudoir-game is on fleek (is really good!) Still, another woman might be an emotional lover—the kind of woman a man might need when he’s feeling a little depressed or lonely. And of course, there’s the jump-off aka the slide—a chick who knows you ain’t got nothin’ but "hard dick and bubblegum" and you’re fresh out of bubblegum! She gets nothing but dick.

The man suffering from a midlife crisis may miss these things.

According to this midlife crisis theory, men who suffer from this disease go out and buy sports cars, try to wear clothes that are designed for younger men, try to hold on to that ever-increasing hairline and try to shag have sex with way younger chicks.

But damn these midlife crisis dudes! That’s their problem!

What about dudes like me who have never stopped living like we are in our ’30’s when it comes to swag and having some fashion sense? What about us? We aren’t suffering from some phantom midlife crisis! We are who we are! We never stopped dressing sharp! We never gave up the club! We never stopped pursuing hot chicks—I mean, those of us who are still single (but I’z married!) We keep up with the times—with current trends & events & know the latest songs—even rap songs! Are we an anomaly or have we forgotten that we should “act our age?”

If there truly be something called a “midlife crisis” than we must consider that some of us are “born stunnas" (before Baby coined the phrase). A “born stunner” is a dude who always had it—you know—the “it” factor when it comes to this thing called life. Age has not decreased their stunneration. They may have gotten grayer, balder and fatter, but they still can pull off stuntin’ looking great!

Everybody ain’t a “born stunna.” That shit can’t be taught and if you were not a born stunna in your prime, you can never become a stunner later in life! Even if you hit the lottery and can afford the finest, we can still tell that your swag is manufactured. You will forever be relegated to the cesspool of midlife crisis.

I hear middle-aged people say (as it relates to clubbing), “Been there, done that!” The club has become old and passe’. They are burned out of the nightlife. Scoping out hawt chicks ain’t their thang anymore. They’d rather stay home and get shit-faced drunk. They are one step away from becoming super-religious and turning to da Lawd for weekend entertainment. Indeed! The man who suffers from a midlife crisis will usually go through that stage of his life and join a church and make that his new “crisis.” But a true “born stunna?” Fuck alla dat church shit! He is in-it-to-win-it because, as a hip-hop wordsmith once said, “Stuntin' is a habit!”

So when you see an old-head in da club like me—one who’s clearly swaggered out, stuntin’ and ‘bout-it, ‘bout it—understand that what you are looking at is a born stunna and no mere midlife crisis-having old-head. The discerning eye can tell the difference. I am the consummate Born Stunna! (That’s why ya girlfriend be eye-fucking me and she knows I’m old enough to be her daddy!)

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