Originally published in The California Aggie
It’s Tuesday night, and the Memorial Union’s Griffin Lounge has been transformed. The chairs are facing a small stage outfitted with three microphones and bright lights. Crowds of students and locals sporting horn-rimmed glasses and sweatshirts rush to find seats as a DJ spins ’90s hip hop music. A voice rises above the din.
“I was baptized in the spit left on floors of abandoned stages/See my holy books rhyme/And five times a day, I lick the ink off their pages/Inject the black ammunition deep into my veins and/Now my tongue is stained with poetic cadence,” recites SickSpits member Mannie Rizvi, hands gesturing to the beat. “Rhymes tight because I’m Abel but they’re sinful like I’m Cain and/I’m bleeding rivers of lyrical drops/Leaving your heavens looking like wastelands.”
As she reaches the breathless finish, the crowd chants back, “Spit sick, po-ET!”