Are You Planking?

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Planking is blowing up the news and photo galleries these days. What is Planking? Older people would say it’s another instance of why the youth is screwed up. Kids would fire back that it’s the most fun you can have being still. Who’s right?

Planking is the act of lying face down for a photograph. The term planking originated from Australia but is actually just another name for ‘the lying down game’ (I’m not kidding). The specific instructions: to put your body face down to the ground (or table, or object, or anything) with your arms to the side.

It may be the latest craze that’s taking over the internet, but does it really mean what people think it means?

Rapper Xzibit is leading a new charge against “planking”, claiming the practice has racist roots. Xzibit recently Tweeted, “Planking is THE dumbest shit ever. Planking was a way to transport slaves on ships during the slave trade, its not funny. Educate yourselves.” The rapper continues with, “Don’t get twisted. I care less where your dumb asses lay face down and take pictures of the shit, I’m just telling you where it came from.”

Although Xzibit is sharing his thoughts on planking, some celebrities, such as Katy Perry, Demi Moore, Rosario Dawson, Chris Brown, and Justin Bieber, seem to care less and have taken part in “planking” and have posted the pictures online.

So yes, “planking” has roots in slavery. If you look at the picture to the right, it shows how slaves captured in Africa were stowed away on ships during the “Middle Passage” journey during the late 16th Century. Slaves used the planks as beds. Rumors have it that “planking” came from kids in Australia, but actual planking began at the start of the slave trade as captured Africans were transported by ships to the New World during the “Middle Passage”.

What do you think?

Ice Cube Recalls Falling In Love With Hip Hop

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Ice Cube has been a cornerstone of Hip Hop since beginning his career in the mid-‘80s. In a sneak preview of his upcoming VH1 episode of “Behind the Music,” the former N.W.A. member recalls falling in love with the culture, explaining that his DJ uncle and Sugarhill Gang were to blame.

“It clicked with me in elementary. I discovered hip-hop at 10 years old, since 1979. My uncle Jerry was taking me to the dentist. He used to be a DJ and would throw parties, deejaying,” he says. “So he had a lot of records and he had this big radio about this big in the backseat. He was into Confunction and Earth, Wind & Fire and Ohio Players and stuff like that. But this one song came on, which was ‘Rapper’s Delight,’ and it mesmerized me. One thing in rap, a song that’s 11 or 12 minutes, they rapping the whole way through. And that just turned me on.”

That planted the seed for Cube’s passion for Hip Hop, encouraging him to soak up the culture in every regard.

“From then on, I had a thirst for the music. I could see anything Hip Hop. Back then, it wasn’t everywhere. You had to find specials on breakdancing and anything on hip-hop, you damn near had to have a treasure map to find it. I was looking. I used to look in TV Guide for anything that had everything that had to do with graffiti, breakdancing, rapping, scratching – anything that had to do with anything being a B-Boy.”

Ice Cube’s “Behind the Music” episode airs tomorrow night (July 6th) at 10 p.m. on VH1.

Nicki Minaj’s Relatives Believe Mistaken Identity Led to Cousin’s Murder

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Relatives of rap superstar Nicki Minaj have told RadarOnline.com that they believe the brutal shooting of her cousin Nicholas Telemaque was a case of mistaken identity.

The slaying of Telemaque, 27, during the early hours of Monday morning has left Minaj, 26, and her relatives reeling. According to RadarOnline, he was shot close to his home in East Flatbush, Brooklyn, around 2.40 a.m. after leaving the C-PAC nightclub with a group of friends.

His cousin Carol Clarke told the website: “He was shot in the chest as he walked towards his car close to his home. Nicki is absolutely devastated as are all our family – she was very close to her cousin but now he has gone.

“She has reached-out to Nicholas’ mom Victoria to offer her words of comfort but she is too distraught. Nicholas was a quiet person but he could be the life and soul of the party too – he did not run with gangs or anything like that.

“His friends have told us there wasn’t any trouble that night and we believe it could have been a case of mistaken identity but the police are still investigating the case.

“We are still trying to make arrangements for his funeral but I will really miss him because he was a good person.”

As previously reported, Minaj (real name Onika Tanya Maraj) has taken to her Twitter to pay tribute to her cousin and post photographs of him.

She wrote: “My cousin Nicholas. Also goes by Juse, or @brolicalcohilic. Murdered. Last nite. Near his home. Brooklyn, NY.”

Nicholas Telemaque was rushed to Kings County Hospital but he died as a result of gunshots to his torso.

He had prior arrests for possession of marijuana and driving on a suspended license – police are still investigating the case and looking for more witnesses to come forward.

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DMX Has No Plans To Say I Do

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A lot of rumors having been floating around about DMX and his post-prison release plans, where the rapper would sign and even whom he might marry.

In an interview with VIBE, X clears the record about the personal matter of his love life. DMX tells the magazine that he in fact in not engaged to model Yadira Borrego.

“No! We absolutely were living together, and at one time we were engaged,” X told the publication. “But um, no. I’m recalling that she wants to work it out, but I really don’t see that happening. I’m not going say it won’t work, but this last time in jail, with me focusing on the mental, allowed me to see who’s there for me and who’s not. It’s easy to say, ‘I got your back. I’m there for you.’ But when it comes down to it, like I said, I’m not even talking about money and things like that. I’m good. I got fans sending me money. I’m good with that.”

X’s most recent prison stint has drastically altered his perspective on life and has him wanting to make changes.

“In a way, yeah. I realized that [change] is something that I want do this time,” X answered when asked if he’s learned his lesson following his latest stint in prison. “Like the last few times I couldn’t wait to get out and go have a drink. Like all my focus was on going to the club or things of that nature. Now, I’m in a frame of mind where I’m like ‘right into the studio and get my grind on.’”

DMX is currently scheduled to be released from jail on July 13.

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