“I need both in my life. A professional legitimate hustler.”
The other day I did a question of the day on my Facebook page and in a couple of Facebook groups. I asked if you preferred your mate to be a professional or be a hustler. Immediately, I saw the difference between the younger generation and those of us that are thirty-five and older. The younger generation started pelting me with questions like “Is his hustle legal?” “Is he slinging drugs?” “How illegal is his hustle?” My mind was blown! When I asked the question the thought of drugs or the law had never entered my mind. Silly me was still thinking that a hustler was somebody who legally did whatever they had to provide for their family.
When we were really young, my father used to pour concrete and work construction jobs to provide for us. He eventually used his skills and street knowledge to build his own business, Covington Construction Company. He would bid on government issued jobs to remodel private homes in low income areas. Most of the time his business flourished, but when things slowed down and no real money was coming in, our stomachs never knew it. He would do whatever he had to in order to provide for us. We didn’t know what it was like to be hungry because he was a hustler. He found jobs, legitimate jobs that paid him enough to get through until business picked back up. He was such a hustler that when my mother found a bigger more beautiful home that she wanted, he bought it for her with a bad check. But by the time the check bounced, he had money in hand to make it good. That’s what a hustler does, he finds ways, legal ways to make things happen and take care of his family.
Now if you were to see my husband, you’d think he was anything but a hustler. He is a VP for a large bank, has been for over twenty years. He is a professional’s professional. He a financial guys and wheels and deals in that arena all day every day. But make no mistake, if something came up and God forbid hard times hit, I have no doubt in my mind that he would pick up a shovel and dig ditches if it meant providing for his family. Would he like it, HELL NO, but would he do it, HELL YES! We are by no means well off, but there is very little that he’s ever denied me. He finds ways, creates opportunities to get everything we need and the majority of what we want. That’s what a hustler does.
One of the responses to my Facebook question was “I need both in my life. A professional legitimate hustler.” That my friends is the perfect description of a an old school hustler. He’s a professional man, one who either runs his own company or is making major moves for another company, but he has enough street knowledge and strength of character to do whatever is necessary to provide for his family. He works within the confines of the law and teaches his children what it is to be responsible. The words “hustler” and “hustle” are thrown around so loosely these days, but I wonder if those that are using it to describe themselves are using it correctly. If you’re begrudgingly doing your 9 to 5, you are not a hustler. If you are slinging drugs, you are not a hustler, you my dear are a criminal. But if you are working your 9 to 5 while trying to create something for you and your family, if you are creating a legacy for your children, If you are a business owner who isn’t double dealing or cheating your employees/contractors, if you are willing to dig ditches to provide until your next legitimate things comes through then YOU ARE A HUSTLER. We need more of you, we need a resurgence of the old school hustler. Not men who sit back and wait for their women to provide, not women who refuse to be a help meet. We need strong men and women to rise up and change the path of our youth, to be the example of what it means to be a leader, a provider, a responsible, law abiding adult. We need the old school hustlers to stand up and step out.