Nicki and NyQuil

In 1992, Sir Mix-A-Lot dropped “Baby Got Back” and dominated MTV (when the station was still playing music video). Both the song and the video put big booty on the map as we are obsessed with it today. Twenty-two years later Nicki Manaj not only pays homage to the man that paved the path for fat asses, but she also makes it her own. “Anaconda” is an imaginative rework in which Manaj plays her her flow and pushes her rhymes. Her lyrics are both nastier and funnier: “Dick bigger than a tower, I ain’t talking about Eiffel’s / Real country-ass nigga, let me play with his rifle / Pussy puts his ass to sleep, now he’s calling me NyQuil.” Now every time I see a bottle of NyQuil, I am thinking of Manaj.

The song also brings back so much nostalgia. “Baby Got Back” released a year after I settled in the States. I still remember catching this song everyday before I go to school. It was on MTV for a few months. As a guy who was still in the discovering phase of sexuality, the song gave me a taste of the American pop culture. One time I was standing with a diverse group of guys (black and Puerto Rican) in the hallway. Two white girls walked by and one black guy in our group started to rap: “I like big butts and I can not lie.” I was kind of embarrassed, but to my amazement, the two girls laughed and giggled their asses. The guys whistled and laughed. At the point, I realized the power of hip hop. It was more than just music. It was a changing culture.