Ladies and gentlemen, stop whatever it is you're doing and give a warm round of applause to Tallman Trask for rolling up his sleeves, pulling a post-Rihanna Chris Brown and getting back into the music business. The Executive Vice President of Duke has stormed back from rap retirement to grace us with a mixtape that has left critics speechless.
For all you boys and girls too young to remember the name Tallman Trask, he’s the reason the Duke Community Standard now includes an asterisk:
- I will not lie*, cheat, or steal in my endeavors;
Back in 2016, Trask launched his career with his award-winning album, “Game Day Parking” which featured hit tracks like:
Critics heaped praise on the album, with a professor in Duke’s Nobel Prize-winning Department of Music raving, “I mean the flow in that four-line chorus of “Under the Hood” where he rhymes ‘trigger,’ ‘rigour,’ ‘digger’ and—you know what, I won’t spoil it for you but it’s so good it should it be illegal.”
Needless to say, hype levels were at fever pitch as Plumpton Sheeple —a.k.a. DJ Plumpy Sheep (Trask’s manager at Small Town Records)—convened a press conference on the steps of the Duke Chapel to announce “IBBAATWTRWB” (the conveniently abbreviated title for Trask’s new album).
Sheeple announced that the album’s content and timing was a calculated move to retain relevance. “Let’s be honest,” he explained, “We’ve got a pretty forgetful student body with at best a four-year institutional memory. They’ll clap their hands together for basketball like seals on crack, but when it comes to rap or, say, institutional issues, things usually die down in a few weeks and it all blows over.”
He added, “That’s really at the core of why we wanted to put this album together; to remind the world that Tallman’s still here, he’s somehow still your Vice President and he’s still spitting bars.”
As its tracklist was unveiled it became clear that “IBBAATWTRWB” was by no means a solo achievement; in fact it took an administration-wide effort, with several other officials featuring in the 45-minute rap rollercoaster.
Larry Moneta lived up to his job title of Vice President of Student Affairs by collaborating with students in Tri Delta and ADPhi to make his hit track “Snow Day,” already tapped for a Grammy. Meanwhile, President Emeritus Brodhead contributed “Dick in a Box”, the music video for which features the 70-year-old marching around West Union slapping food out of peoples’ hands, shouting “You best be calling it ‘The Richard Brodhead Center for Campus Life’ or be ready for a motherf**king knife fight.”
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However, just as Plumpton Sheeple was bringing the press conference to an end, he was interrupted by a group of protesters. The students, who had entirely forgotten about the existence of Trask until the announcement of the comeback album, were appalled to hear that they still shared a campus with a rapper so morally abhorrent. Within seconds, they had filled the stage brandishing a stupidly long sign bearing the hashtag #WeKindaThinkTraskIsADisgraceAndShouldLeaveTheRapGameForGood.
Following a brief shouting match, the protesters allowed Sheeple to respond:
“Ok, first off—awful hashtag. It’s way too long, it’s clunky, and it’s not even fun to chant. Seriously, have any of you even used Twitter? Take some free advice from a music producer: keep it catchy and short, like #TraskMustFall. Honestly, I don’t even know why I’m helping you.”
“But finally, let me just put this whole controversy to bed; when we released ‘Game Day Parking’ it was during an entirely different era in the rap game. What you pesky kids are trying to do is apply the standards of today to a situation that happened a full two years ago when felonious hit-and-runs, the silencing of protests, and institutionalized racism were the norm—in fact they were seen as things we admired in our leaders at Duke. Calling for Trask’s resignation from rap is like demanding that we take down a statue of Robert E. Lee for the goofy racist shenanigans he got up to back in his day—you wouldn’t do that, right?”
Monday Monday has since learned that Duke President Vincent E. Price is also entering the rap game, although rumors are still swirling as to whether he will be titling his debut album “More Platitudes” or “Putting My Money Where My Mouth Is On My New Vision For Duke”.
History is watching him.
Correction: Monday Monday earlier stated mistakenly that Duke’s Department of Music was “Nobel Prize-winning”; as of yet the department has been awarded no such title but Monday Monday is optimistic that if they keep slathering that thick, jazz-flavoured sauce all over their Christian rock jam sessions something will definitely come along soon.
This is now the third time Monday Monday has made such an error; Monday Monday feels nothing but endless shame and vows that this will be the last time such an instance occurs.