late 2 the rap show: mercury retrograde [#StarsAndSymbols]

prompted by my coworker’s reminder, i purchased last minute tickets to the kanye west show. when new dates were added to the yeezus tour, i suggested we buy tickets for the night of february 22nd, at atlantic city‘s boardwalk hall. we left it at that, or least i did. “seeing papa north west in the flesh would be cool and all,” i thought, but i wasn’t pressed and he didn’t seem to be either. fast forward a month or 2, and we are interested again. so, i invited my dear friend from college, and we bought tickets the night before.

after being surrounded by increasing hostility all week at work, balancing as best as possible in the midst of other people’s feuds, i was relieved to clock out on saturday and get my evening started. my coworker couldn’t find the discounted tickets he was looking for and lost interest again, but my friend from school arrived right after my shift ended. we grabbed a bite to eat at a restaurant called lugo, situated across from my job, on the revel casino floor. we took our time catching up over dinner, since we had not seen each other since right before the new year, trusting that divo-turned-daddy would be late to hit the stage.

turns out we were the late ones. by the time i stopped making wrong turns in my own city and found free parking as an alternative to the $20 casino garage, we made our way to the venue. i swore i heard his voice blaring from the stage as we passed by the concession stands and overpriced paraphernalia, but we concluded it was studio version of his song playing to get the crowd warm and whetted, and so we took the opportunity to empty our bladders. as i walked out of the bathroom, i was encountered by my cousin, an employee of boardwalk hall, and he informed me that the show had already begun. surprised, my friend and i rushed to section 111 row bb to claim our seats, wondering how much of the show we had missed, much to the chagrin of the height-challenged hypebeasts seated behind us.


although a part of my experience felt incomplete, i enjoyed the show for what it was; a reflection of an artistic visionary’s polarizing state of mind. knowing the concept of the album that was being promoted, i didn’t expect the show to be an easy swallow, so i didn’t too much mind the monologues and melodramatic emotional moments that seemed frustrate some of the other audience members. the couple seated in front of us gave us frequent commentary, expressing their disappointment in the performance for which they paid. as the set progressed, and mr. west began to bust out the hits of albums past, the couple, along with other like-minded patrons, had no choice but to change their tune. the show was a slow build that culminated in bound 2, the song that birthed the infamously ill-interpreted video featuring a distractingly bouncy kim kardashian (whom we may or may not have spotted exiting the general admission section).

conversing with that same couple as the show came to a close, we discovered they were visiting atlantic city for the first time from washington, dc. they were looking for an after party just as much as we were, so i invited them out to the tropicana and offered them a ride. we grabbed drinks at wet willie’s in the ever-crowded french quarter section of the casino and ran into the older sisters of my good friend from high school. together with my random band of buddies, new and old, i made my way to a latin-themed lounge by the name of tango’s. i did not plan in advance for this unexpectedly fun night, it just came out of nowhere like a rabbit being pulled from a magic hat.


if it seems as though your mind is playing tricks on you, it probably is. mercury [what we think and say based on the information we receive from our various sources] has been retrograde for a couple of weeks now. the messages that are being transmitted as we move about our environments are being processed more irregularly than usual, which can be troubling and tiresome as we travel from point a to point b. mental energy is rewired so that our minds become introverted. intuitive introspection is a possibility, as well as major miscommunication. for better or worse, what we think is going to happen… doesn’t. with mercury apparently traveling backward from pisces to aquarius, this period provides us the possibility to revisit our wildest dreams and goals, as it is all too easy to get lost in sudden fits of fantasy.

once we left the lounge and dropped off our foreign friends at their hotel, my collegiate confidant and i headed back to my house where we immediately began booking a flight to new orleans. for the longest time we had dreamt of taking on the big easy, and when it was announced last month that my favorite childhood songstress christina aguilera was headlining jazzfest, my dream recurred. although i dismissed it as too short notice for my savings account, my aforementioned coworker, fresh off the plane from the all-star game, convinced me to invest in the trip. thankfully, my undergrad comrade was just as open to idea as i was, and now we are looking forward to our springtime stay in new orleans.


as hesitant as i was to make any sudden moves with mercury in retrograde motion, i decided to temper my caution with faith in a favorable future. most of what i accomplished during the last 2 weeks was rooted in a time when the planet was transiting direct, so this process was just what i needed to arrive at the right destination. despite all the twists and turns, the journey is going great and best of all it’s just beginning.

we are free to re-read the fine print if we feel the need to avoid mistakes of the mind kind, but it is imperative that we endeavor to enjoy the rest of mercury retrograde before it stations and resumes direct motion. the most stimulating connections are made when we are stuck on the wrong side of a riddle. sometimes being caught off guard and incorrect is the only way to find the answer we thought we already knew.

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