🧵My step daughter, Mia, graduated from college and I offered her a long weekend wherever she wanted to go. She picked San Diego, which was a short flight to maximize the time on the ground adventuring. I researched hotels, sites and restaurants for our trip.
3:01 PM · Apr 6, 2021
I upgraded us to first class. We had two aisle seats adjacent to each other not actually beside each other. As the crew started to prepare for departure the seat beside me was open so Mia was about to move over and sit next to me when three more people boarded.
It was obvious one person, I didn’t recognize, was famous with his entourage in tow. He settled beside me and I smiled. I continued to talk to Mia while she text me asking who he was. The flight attendant swooned asking if he wanted a drink before take off. He declined.
Suddenly, he became animated asking for a “double jack w/ ice”. Looking over I realized he had eaten an airborne pill, the kind meant to be dissolved in water, 😂 He threw it away, I pretended not to notice. (Politely) Mia wanted me to solve this mystery but i was not intruding
I introduced myself in return. He added his real name was Earl. His music was present during many fun nights in college. I text Mia and sent a link to his profile and she began her research. We continued the flight quietly. I was reading Twitter, I am always reading Twitter...
He asked me what i was reading. We got into a discussion about social media, he preferred Instagram, he had more engagement there. I looked him up and saw the cross post from Instagram to Twitter as a link. Pro tip: post native or with an image to increase engagement
I explained the correlation between an image and engagement and he excused himself to get “his social phone” from his handler somewhere else on the plane. When he returned he asked me to show him. I asked for an image that he liked. I commented it looked like a constellation.
He explained how he loved when people held up their phone flashlights during performances. It reminded me of a photo I had just seen of Lin Manual Miranda in an article about Hamilton. DMX wasn’t familiar w Hamilton so I shared the soundtrack and we talked about the casting.
We discussed race and his incarceration. He was so authentic and candid. He went to get something else from his handler. He returned with another phone and played a song about his grandmother who raised him. It wasn’t yet released but it was recorded with John Legend.
He talked about his kids, he has a lot of kids. He worried about them and told me how much he enjoyed being a father returning again to stories of his grandmother and her influence in his life and as a parent. He talked about her illness, cancer. He talked about his faith.
The flight was short and made shorter by an engaging conversation. DMX was well read and religious. As we stood to retrieve our bags overhead he asked for my phone number and asked if we would come to his performance as his guests. I froze, I was w Mia, was this a good idea?
Mia’s eyes were big with excitement. I realized he was being polite and of course he wouldn’t call so I smiled and gave him my number and he gave me his... We took Uber to our hotel. I had dinner reservations at the best place downtown from NYT 36 hours in San Diego review.
We returned to the hotel at 9 pm. As we walked to our room from the lobby my phone rang. It was DMX, he asked us to meet him at his hotel in 45 minutes, he was downtown. I looked at Mia and she begged and i said yes... As I hung up she said, “you aren’t wearing that.” 😂
Mia dressed me in her college clothes and off we went to meet DMX, I had lost my damn mind. At the hotel, a party bus was outside w motorcycles and inside a group in leather jackets adorned w “Rough Ryders” I asked if DMX was there? Lol, they ignored me Earl then? Nothing...
DMX appeared and welcomed us, thanking us for coming. We walked outside to the bus and he called Mia and I away to a SUV waiting in the alley. The bus was for the entourage😂 We arrived at the venue and entered through the service area DMX greeted back of house staff politely.