February 28, 2019
By A.C. Flowers
As it is the last day in February, our Black History month series has no other option but to unfortunately come to a close. Conducting these interviews has been somewhat of a bittersweet experience for me, as I only wish now that I had ample amounts of time to dedicate to bringing the EAW Universe and Fight Grid fans more from our Black stars. I’d like to thank all of my earlier guests–Serena Bennett, Visual Prophet, SOSA Henderson, and Chris Elite–for joining me and contributing to the series and sharing so much of themselves with me. I wish I had all the resources in the world just to make sure these folks get the spotlight they deserve. Hell, we even ran out of Fridays in February! So to make sure that I was able to squeeze in as many interviews as I possibly can, I met with our last candidate a day early, bringing my interview with Malcolm Jones to you on a beautiful Thursday afternoon, as opposed to our usual Friday afternoon post.
We will end our series with some insights from the 2019 King of Elite, Malcolm Jones. Malcolm is credited by some as the foundation of the modern day Black power movement in EAW, stemming from his earlier days working with Mr. DEDEDE in the Gawd Complex. The chairman saw something very early on from Jones that the EAW Universe eventually came to a full understanding of–that Malcolm Jones is everything EAW Elitists should aspire to be in terms of charisma, athletic ability, confidence, principles, values, and more.
Stick around and take a peak at what Malcolm Jones has to offer us. Watch as we settle the debate once and for all: is a chopped cheese really just a cheesesteak rip off?
Anna C. Flowers: Hey, Malcolm! Thank you for joining me today! I know you got a lot going on right now, and I appreciate you taking the time. I couldn’t think of a better person to finish off our series with, it only makes sense to end things with you.
Malcolm Jones: Not a problem, Anna. I’m happy to be here. And I’m flattered to know you think so highly of me. Where should we get started?
ACF: I supposed where everyone else started up! Talk to me about growing up. Your family. Your experiences as a child.
MJ: Growing up, I learned to embrace the concept of “make do with what you got.” I ain’t have much, was on welfare, section 8, food stamps, moms was working tirelessly just to keep the lights on. And in the midst of all of that, she had always kept the most positive attitude and outlook on life. That kinda rubbed off on me, because as you can see, I’m a pretty upbeat and charismatic person despite the hardships and traumatic experiences I’ve faced in life. She didn’t have much but the little she did have she tried her best to keep me in the best situation possible.
ACF: I definitely agree with you. Do you think there’s anyone else you can contribute that positive attitude to?
MJ: Yeah. My older cousin was my biggest inspiration. He would be the one to come over to watch me while my mom was off working. That’s who got me into sports and wrestling. He’s the one who kept me out of the streets and guided me on a path to not make the same mistakes he saw our cousins and uncles make that landed them in a prison cell or an early coffin. He pretty much taught me everything, from fashion, to girls, to sports, to music, and life in general, so I owe a lot to him.
ACF: You mention your cousins and uncles falling victim to some of their negative experiences. But what were your experiences like, how hard was it to stay away from that type of lifestyle? Did you have any positive experiences that stood out?
MJ: As far as specific experiences go, man, I could go on all day. There was a lot of good and bad experiences so, if it’s alright with you, I’ll just stick with the good.
ACF: Fair enough. Go on.
MJ: Aight, so, every Fourth of July is usually the national holiday for Americans to barbeque and cookout and all that good stuff, right? But my family was different. Juneteenth was our Fourth of July, because that is an important day for Black history, the day slavery ended–well at least legal slavery. So, every year on June 19th we would throw a huge block party and cookout in celebration of it. Then there was the Rucker Park games that really made me fall in love with one of the sports that I would eventually get a scholarship for. The who’s who of Black excellence would always pull up to watch, from the Diddys to the Hovs, some even had their own teams.
ACF: Rucker Park? Is that in Harlem?
MJ: That’s correct.
ACF: Tell me about Harlem. Do you think it’s what makes Manhattan the best borough, compared to the other four?
MJ: The culture is just different. We set all of the trends from slang to fashion to music. Grown ass men were still uncomfortable with their sexuality to the point where they couldn’t be caught dead wearing pink…until Harlem made it cool to wear pink. Dudes was walking around in baggy ass clothes looking like they just jumped out of a Kriss Kross video….until Harlem made it cool to wear fitted clothing. All them designer brands you see dudes bragging about being able to afford, guess who put them shits on the map? You guessed it–Harlem. We also get the most money, you watched Paid in Full? That was Harlem. I don’t see a Paid in Full for Brooklyn or the Bronx or Queens, you know why? ‘Cause they don’t have that clout. It’s also the Black mecca with so many different attractions and landmarks. Let’s talk about it. The Apollo Theater, BB Kings, Sylvias, not to mention the countless historic places that has history dating back to the Harlem Renaissance. Oh, y’all ain’t think I was gonna bring that up, did you? Do your fuckin googles on the Harlem Renaissance and the impact it had on black culture and the civil rights movement. Oh and shout out to the greatest civil rights activist of all time, a Harlemite, Malcolm X.
ACF: All this loyalty for your hood, but can you say you still get your sandwiches from the local bodega?
MJ: Hell yeah.
ACF: Prove it. Where do you get your bacon egg and cheeses from, then?
MJ: Harlem Gourmet Deli on Malcolm X Blvd.
ACF: And a chopped cheese?
MJ: The same place and it’s the greatest thing in the world.
ACF: I’m curious now because SOSA put me on the cheesesteak wave. I’ve never had a chopped cheese myself, so I’m not so sure what the difference is between them. Could you tell me what separates a chopped cheese from a Philly cheesesteak?
MJ: I think the main difference between the two issssss…..(Malcolm takes a long, extended pause.) One tastes like shit and the other one tastes like heaven.
Malcolm Jones cutting a promo in 2019.
ACF: You’re a character, Malcolm. Tell me more about your personal life. What do you do for fun? How does he live his life outside of EAW?
MJ: Contrary to a lot of people’s beliefs, despite the fact that I do get money–a whole lot of it–I don’t live some superficial lifestyle where I spend 24 hours of my day spending it on a bunch of materialistic shit while surrounded by 100 bad bitches while I’m free. I’m actually a really family orientated dude. Whenever I can, I spend time with my family. I spend time with my homies and just have fun like the good ol’ days, I mentor the youth back home and try to give them the necessary tools to succeed in life and empower them. I think of more ways to get some money while also giving back. Lately that been looking like me purchasing property from impoverished neighborhoods and fixing them up and renting them out at an affordable price for my people because fuck gentrification. On the days off of that, I bust my ass in that gym to continue being the greatest wrestler EAW has ever seen. And THEN once all of that is done, I treat myself to a little fun.
ACF: Fun like what?
MJ: Usually between spending a couple racks at my favorite store, or getting with the baddest women imaginable.
ACF: You mention becoming the greatest wrestler EAW has ever seen. While I don’t disagree necessarily, tell me about why you think you were so successful early on?
MJ: I think I was successful early on because…. I’m black. I’m better because I’m black, it’s a scientific fact. I’m melanated and y’all hate it. Even DEDEDE wanted my drip to rub off on him, pause, but nahhh brothaman it’s just not in your DNA.
ACF: And past your early career? What about today? What are your goals for 2019?
MJ: Easy. Win a world championship and hold both that world championship alongside the Interwire championship, defend both successfully till y’all get sick of me, and then win Elitist of the Year. Sounds pretty reasonable.
ACF: Let’s hope you put that Crown to good use then. What did winning the 2019 King of Elite tournament mean for you?
MJ: Winning King of Elite was a vindicating moment for me because I constantly heard the bullshit, “you only won because Ryan Wilson jumped in blah blah blah” or my favorite, “you didn’t earn your spot because you bypassed the tournament.” (Malcolm chuckles.) Yeah, by beating three other motherfuckers who were notorious for either winning a tournament or a multiman match situation with big implications. So, it felt good to be able to tell those detractors to suck my dick while I put that crown on my head. It also only felt right for that to have been done in Africa considering the royal history of my people.
ACF: You think you can capitalize on that victory?
MJ: I don’t think I can capitalize, I KNOW I can capitalize and I WILL capitalize. It’s just a matter of when. Same as every other King of Elite, I’ma cash that bitch in and win a world title.
ACF: What do you want your EAW legacy to be? What do you think you have the capacity to achieve, beyond grabbing titles and collecting victories?
MJ: I wanna go down as the greatest to ever lace the boots up. When it’s all said and done my name will be up there with the all time greats, nah fuck that my name will be above them all. I’ll be remembered as the guy who made it cool to be himself and not have to compromise anything or try to fit in and still succeeded. Somebody who didn’t have to switch their style up from an edgy wannabe cac to hood overnight and then try to take credit for every successful black wrestler like some people. Somebody who was genuinely who he said he was and backed up every word he said. Most importantly, somebody who inspired a generation of black wrestlers to follow him.
ACF: Something tells me you’re already on your way to achieving all of that and more. What do you have to say to the generation of black wrestlers who will eventually try and follow your footsteps?
MJ: The most important thing is this: be yourself. Know your self worth and never compromise to make others happy, especially if it ain’t making you happy. You don’t gotta enter this industry being something you not, the black experience has several different facets to it. You could be hood, you can be a nerd, you can be a regular everyday person from the suburbs, you know what I mean? There isn’t on particular way to be black and the more we embrace who we are deep down the more we show just how versatile and dynamic we are as a people. Just don’t coon it up like some former EAW members. (Malcolm winks.) Last but not least…BELIEVE. Believe that it is possible, we all know there’s gonna be obstacles on the road and we gonna have to work four times harder than contemporaries of a different race just for half as much, and it’s fucked up–but if anybody is built for it, it’s us. Know what you’re getting into before you get into it and understand what it takes to get there, and then change the world and make it a better place for those who come after you.
ACF: Some inspirational words from the Interwire Champ! Thanks a bunch, Malcolm. That’s about all I have for you! Anything else you’d like to say to wrap up our series until next year?
MJ: I wanna give a shoutout to EAW for the dope series. It’s an honor to be the one anchoring this series and taking it home for the black superstars of EAW, they made the right choice seeing as how I am clearly the most prominent black star in EAW today. On another note tho, it’s a fucking shame that we only get 28 days of a month to celebrate this shit. Ol’ butter biscuit of a fucking tribute. Then as soon as March hits it’s back to not caring about us. We need more than just black history month where people post out of context MLK quotes to support a bullshit agenda. If they really about it then give us reparations, give us equal pay, end gentrification, and make me world champ while you’re at it. Also fuck Jussie Smollett and R Kelly for almost ruining this month for us.
ACF: Thank you, Malco–
MJ: Free Max B.