I consider myself an ambitious guy. I see myself in a certain place and then I try to get myself to that place. I strive hard to accomplish my goals and then I set my sights on the next goals. Rinse and repeat. Sometimes I won’t accomplish them, but dammit I go for it.
I’m finding that sometimes that same ambition that makes me who I am is what can be off-putting about me. A lot of people think that successful people must have left a slew of back-stabbed competitors and associates in their wake. I refuse to believe that’s the case. There are good people on top. Right? My mission is to get where I want to be without screwing anybody over. Sounds political as shit, but I really don’t wanna be that guy. I respect and understand the hustle and the coldness that is sometimes used, but that just ain’t me.
Sometimes I get a suspicious look from people when I talk about shit I’m trying to accomplish. They hit me with that Larry David look like they’re trying to see through my bullshit. But there is no bullshit. I really want everybody to prosper. There’s room for everybody out here in these entertainment streets. Especially nowadays with all of the different avenues to get your product out there. Who has time to be trying to hold somebody back?
I really like the movie “Paid In Full” (check it out if you haven’t seen it). It’s a Roc-A-Fella film based on the true story of a drug gang’s rise to the top of the game in 1980’s Harlem. A lot of fanfare is made about Mekhi Phifer and Cam’ron’s turn in the film but it was Wood Harris’ Ace Boogie that resonated with me. He was a big picture thinker. He didn’t try to hog all of the limelight. He wanted everybody to be alright.
- Everybody eats.
That was his slogan and he made it to the top. I mean, it’s still the drug game so he got shot in the face, but still. Ace Boogie was trying to look out for more than just himself and it paid off with him getting to where he wanted to be. I’m on my Ace Boogie in this comedy game. I stepped in not knowing shit and tried to learn the landscape while building my act. I saw/see the undeniable talent around me and I use it to motivate myself to stay sharp. I started hosting with the focus being on the show. If the crowd has a good time, the comics will have a good time. I’m the host so I’ll be getting my time to shine regardless. Focus on the show and everybody eats. It’s working. Comics like performing when I’m host. I’m gonna do my best to get that room rockin’.
The festival I was trying to put on was another “everybody eats” moment. Of course a successful festival would bring some positive notoriety my way. However every performer would have a chance to flex their comedic muscles with their own projects. Everybody eats and we rise together.
In this field you still have to be funny though. It’s also very competitive so I understand the Larry David looks.
- Why would he be looking out for me?
I blame my high level of confidence. I really believe that I’m good at what I do, so talent doesn’t threaten me. In my opinion it makes me better. Bring it. Go out and rip that audience up and I’ll go right after you and try my best to rip it up even more (and I probably will). With that, everybody can eat. Shit, let’s win together. It won’t make me any worse at what I do. If you’re good it will make me want to be better. It only helps. We’ll rise together. Look out for more “everybody eats” moments soon. I’m still ambitious. Until next time…