It’s been an interesting 24 hours, to say the least.
On Wednesday evening while on tour, I got a few tweets linking me to an episode of Jeopardy!
I not only learned that day that the show was still on the air, but that Alex Trebek had taken a really small poke at the genre of music in which I make my living: Nerdcore Hip-Hop.
“Losers, in other words,” was the response from Trebek after talking to contestant Susan Cole about her interest in Nerdcore.
I got so excited and happy when I heard her mention Nerdcore, then when Trebek took a dump on her, I felt all the air go out of my chest, like a punch from a bully on Freshman’s Day.
Trebek said “oh, I’m just teasing” after it was done, and to most of America, that was enough to allow a pass.
You see, I’m not going to say I was “triggered” or anything like that by Trebek’s comments, but I was totally offended. And when someone says something offensive to you, the easiest next sentence is usually “I’m sorry,” or “I was just joking.”
That doesn’t take the sting out of his words, which I found ignorant and unnecessary. No one says, “oh those bus drivers are losers,” or “trash men? They’re terrible people.”
Nerdcore has been around as a term for over 10 years. In that time, countless artists have identified with the term, many have released Billboard-charting albums, and toured the world. It’s currently my full time line of work. I’m on one of the biggest Nerdcore tours to date, with over 50 US and UK stops.
So no, the fact that a 76 year old man called me a loser didn’t bother me, but it sure didn’t make me feel great.
I wrote a very small, very short response to Trebek and put it online that night before bed, and woke up with it being broadcast on TMZ, Entertainment Weekly, Billboard, and more.
What’s my endgame? Do I expect retaliation bars from Alex Trebek? An apology?
But I just want him to think twice before making unfounded statements about something that is a line of work for many people.
mc chris said it best to Billboard:
“It’s a small corner of the hip-hop world but it’s a real and true respite to hundreds of thousands of people that are tired of being called losers, and would rather celebrate their nerdiness instead of trying to conform to society’s mandates.”
We chose a more succinct, and more aggressive response.
“Suck It, Trebek.”
And in Jacksonville.
Thank you, Susan Cole.