Phife Dawg’s mother believes it is important to open with a story that illuminates the cleverness and wit that her son carried through most of his life.
“Malik started playing piano at age eight,” the poet Cheryl Boyce-Taylor says. “He stuck with it for about three years, and then finally one day he came home very agitated. He and his teacher had had a huge fight. Malik told me that he was not returning to piano lessons and that he didn’t want to work with his teacher anymore because her breath stunk.”
Then comes the punchline: “I knew that her breath did stink, but I could not believe this brazen little boy was bold enough to say it out loud.”