There is a vast ocean of shit you people don’t know shit about. Rick knows every grain of said shit and then some.
– Abraham, The Walking Dead
Story of my life, Rick. Story of my life.
PREVIOUSLY ON TRUE MUSIC STORIES:
Longtime friends Bookshelf Q. Battler aka Read N. Plenty and Bernie Plotznik aka MC Plotz travel to Hollywood in search of fame and fortune as a rap duo called “The Funky Hunks.” They sign with Reuben Torkilsen, who, at the time, was considered the worst agent in Hollywood, his only client list being a sub-par magician and a dog.
At Reuben’s behest, they hold auditions for a third member, and pass on an up-and-coming Curtis “50-Cent” Jackson.
REUBEN: Look boys. I get it. I’m new in the biz. I have an office in a strip mall between a Shakey’s Pizza and a discount orthodontist. But I’m one thing the other agents in this town are not. I’m hungry. I want to taste success as much as you two do. I’m willing to work, I’ve got some great ideas, and I think you should listen to me.
BQB: You suck, Reuben.
BERNIE: Big time. We want Dr. Dre.
REUBEN: No offense, but Dr. Dre wouldn’t pee on you if you were on fire. Now, listen, I really feel your group needs a third member. Someone with street cred…someone with style and pizazz, someone with some star power that will rub off on you two…
BQB: We’re lousy with star power.
BERNIE: We’ve got street cred out the wazoo.
BQB: Just the other day my Aunt Gertie told me I have copious amounts of street cred.
REUBEN: You passed on 50-Cent. Passed on that nice young man Busta Rhymes. And what about that about Marshall Mathers guy? He seemed very talented.
BQB: Please, Reuben. We’re already two white guys. The rap game only has so much room for us.
BERNIE: Hell will freeze over before everyone in America pays attention to a song about a guy who calls himself “Slim Shady.”
REUBEN: Alright. Here’s my next idea. You change your name from “Funky Hunks” to “Funky People” and add a female rapper.
BQB: Reub, I think you’re missing out on the cleverness of our name.
BERNIE: “Funk” rhymes with “Hunk.”
BQB: We spent hours on that shit.
(A young Missy Elliot walks into the room)
REUBEN: Boys, this is Missy Elliot.
BQB: Chicks can’t rap.
REUBEN: Ignore them, Missy. Let’s hear what you’ve got.
MISSY ELLIOT 1999 FUNKY HUNK AUDITION
Thank you for seeing me today. I call this ‘Work It.’
Is it worth it? Let me work it.
I put my thing down, flip it, and reverse it…
BQB: Whoa, whoa, whoa!!!!
BERNIE: Time out! Stop the clock!
BQB: “I put my thing down, flip it, and reverse it?”
BQB: So basically, you do nothing?
BQB: Try to follow me on this. If you put your thing down…flip it…then reverse it…you have essentially done nothing. Your thing is back in its original position. You might as well have not moved your thing at all.
MISSY: It’s just a catchy lyric…
(BQB slaps his forehead. Bernie pinches the bridge of his nose as if he is suffering from a tremendous headache).
BERNIE: Alright, let’s do a little experiment here.
(Bernie takes out a piece of paper, writes “X” on one side and “Y” on the other)
BERNIE: We have a paper. We have “Side X” and “Side Y.” In its default position, the paper has Side X facing up. This paper is, by its very definition, “a thing.” I take this thing, I flip it. Side Y is now facing up. I now reverse that action by flipping the paper over so that Side X is once again facing up. In summation, I might as well have done nothing at all. That’s science. Your song is an affront to science.
(Missy turns to Reuben)
MISSY: Are these dudes for real?
REUBEN: Yes, unfortunately.
BQB: I don’t think we’re asking for much for our third member to have a grasp of the basic principles of engineering and aerodynamics, do you?
REUBEN: You’re making a big mistake here fellas…
BQB: Please. This dame won’t make a dime off that song.
ANNOUNCER: By 2002, Missy Elliot became richer than an old timey gold prospector and you couldn’t drive a car five feet without listening to “Work It” on the radio.
BQB: All that proves is that we live in a nation of dunces, people too ignorant to understand science.
BERNIE: It’s basic science! She might as well have said, “I’m going to do nothing at all because to do something only to revert said something to its original state is to essentially do nothing at all!
ANNOUNCER: The duo auditioned every aspiring rapper in the game, passing over one future success after another. Finally, Carl McGillicuddy, the Shakey’s janitor poked his head in the room.
CARL: Reuben, I’m mopping out Shakey’s shitter. Want me to do yours while I’m at it?
REUBEN: Sure. Thanks.
BQB: Whoa! Who’s that?!
REUBEN: He’s the Janitor.
BERNIE: Hey! Janitor! Can you sing?
CARL: Not a note.
BQB: Can you stand in the background, hold a mic, pretend like you’re singing, and take home a paycheck that will be smaller than ours but still more than you make mopping out pizza joint shitters?
CARL: Hell yeah.
BERNIE: You’re hired!
TOMORROW ON TRUE MUSIC STORIES: THE FUNKY HUNKS DEVELOP A BAD BOY IMAGE