Sway was out when Omar (Epps) came by the show so I had to interview him by myself. FYI> It’s WEIRD interviewing your friends.
I met Omar way back in 1992 while I was taping THE REAL WORLD because we had the same manager. His movie “JUICE” was the talk of the (hip hop) industry so our manager thought it would good if he came by the (REAL WORLD) house for a taping. The executive producers had no idea who he was, but they filmed us talking anyway, however they NEVER aired it.
Omar and I remained friends, and ironically he ended up moving down the block from me so we hung out alot. Back then I kept a steady fish fry going on the weekends and all my homies would be over playing video games while arguing whose albums were better. Folks would be surprised how much Omar KNOWS about music, how opinionated he is about it, and how he helped me with my “ALL GLOCKS DOWN” video: He stayed on set ALL DAY&NIGHT for FREE!!!
When it was time for me to do another video, Omar wanted to direct it (his directorial debut) and literally told me…”YO! You need to change how you dress in your videos!” “Dress like you dress when we hang out.” I never knew WHAT a big difference that would make, but dudes paid less attention to the song and “the hit” became my skin, tight, Ralph Lauren jumpsuit that I wore. Haha!
Our manager ended up being a shady character which envitably forced us to make some changes. Omar moved to L.A. I stayed in N.J. Worked on music, did shows, traveled, etc. When I did go to L.A. though, sometimes we would catch up…other times our schedules were crazy and eventually time ended up winning: It had been over 10 YEARS since we’ve actually had a chance to sit down and talk.
Now, Omar has seen me cry, fight, write rhymes, fry chicken, the whole nine; But there is NO WAY you can imagine that the next time you are gonna “see” your friend is via interview. It was CRAZY!!! We both just laughed, yet one of the first things we simultaneously said was…”I am SOOOO HAPPY FOR YOU.” It almost made me cry.
The tears wouldn’t rolled because of the words, but more so because of “the place” where I KNOW it came from. He continued with, “YO…I was home, jumped in my car one day, cut the radio on, and was like YO…It’s HEATHER!!!” All I had to say to him was, “Dawg…You already KNOW how many times I was home screaming when I saw you on “HOUSE” and ALL the award shows, KILLIN HOLLYWOOD!> And the hook is..He’s MARRIED, with kids, with NO SCANDALS and NO SLOPPINESS.
After the interview was over, I couldn’t stop thinking about the difference between someone being geniunely happy for you and the fake happy. I could not stop thinking about the number of people that were happy when I was bartending and doing radio for FREE: They had time to come, sit, sample drinks and shut the bar down. BUT, Do you know I can count on ONE HAND the number of people, including “friends” (once I moved to radio regularly) that said to me, “I’m HAPPY for you.”
THANK GOD I’ve come to learn that most of the time when people aren’t happy for you, it’s because they aren’t happy with themselves. Mind you, they have NO IDEA how many times you cried, prayed, the hours you put in working&dreaming, or the demons you fought. All they “see” is…You got ahead of me.
I also understand that happiness is a spirit and a choice: You can literally choose to embrace the spirit of happiness; Embrace it, then spread it. I was talking to Mike Tyson on Tuesday, (who ironically I first met with Omar back in 1996) and Mike said to me, “You have good energy. You seem happy.” After my brain registered that MIKE TYSON was literally sitting next to me and we were sharing his grapes, yes grapes (I was STARVING; So I asked for some) I said, “I am happy.” He asked why and I told him because GOD is allowing me to do what I love.
Oddly enough he KEPT inquiring, then asked…”What about your problems?” I said, “We all got ’em.” “I just decided not to allow mine to make me miserable anymore.” Thinking I’d finally explained my happiness to him, MIKE TYSON still had ONE more question for me. Looking me dead in the face, he goes….”Do you have any kids?” I wasn’t sure where he was going, but I answered truthfully and replied “Naw.” It was as if a bright light came on in a pitch black room. His eyes lit up and that big grin came on his face as he said…”NO KIDS???>>>THAT”S WHY YOU”RE SO HAPPY!” LOL!!!