Action Bronson and Diving, A Love Story

I knew from the moment I heard him rap for the first time on Asher Roth’s “Choices” that I was going to like Action Bronson. Because he grew up in the same neighborhood as my father his accent immediately reminded me of someone my mom would introduce me to at a wedding or a funeral and tell me were somehow related, likely via marriage to some cousin she grew up with and then grew distant from. Action is well noted for his passion for food, both being a former chef, manning his own cooking show Fuck That’s Delicious, and penning a book that shares the name of his show. However, it was a lesser known passion of Action’s that solidified me as a fan, his passion for the sport of diving. I was among the huskiest divers in the NCAA during my time in college and Action is likely the only man in the world who is as passionate about diving as I am who also has more body mass than I do. I thought the advent of his new album and book releases was the perfect time to commemorate our mutual passion. Here is a comprehensive list of every time Action rapped about diving.

 

Larry Czonka — Dr. Lecter

I’m diving in like Louganis
I’m aiming right for that anus

You’ll notice Action often uses diving as a metaphor for sex, almost definitely to illustrate his love and passion for the sport. He employs the classic Louganis/anus rhyme which has become the bottles/models of the 2010s. Greg Louganis is a legend of the sport likely the most famous Olympic diver of all time, and Action was sensitive to his homosexuality with this line aiming for an anus rather than any other orifice. Smart on his part referencing diving’s elderstatesman early on to earn the diving community’s trust as quickly as possible.

Bag of Money — Dr. Lecter

Light stubble, rock the muzzle like Hannibal

Jump off the top of the boat into a cannonball

Here Action acknowledges that while he may be an enthusiast he still knows his place in the sport, opting for cannonballs over a reverse two and a half two twists. However, he gets more and more garish with time, lord knows 2016 Bronson would not be making the concessions that 2011 Bronson did.

Cirque Du Solei — Well Done

Dive in the muff break the pussy like an Asian cookie

Action here is clearly tipping his cap to the legends of the sport hailing from the east like Shi Tingmao and Lin Yue. China has been a dominant force in the diving community for seemingly as long as man has been springing itself into the air and falling into the water, and clearly Bronson took notice. After all its hard not to with athletes like Guo Jingjing coming out of China. Very tasteful on Action’s part extending an olive branch to this oft maligned part of the diving community.

The Symbol — Rare Chandeliers

Jump out the car into the river
No splash on the dive

This was the line that made me forever an Action Bronson fan. He is ready and willing to participate in the sport regardless of his environment or current situation and not only does he dive but NO SPLASH, the man excels!! I loved everything about it, I used to listen to The Symbol before every diving meet and wished for an opportunity to have a walk-up song. The music video, while lacking diving, is also worth a watch.

Gateway to Wizardry — Rare Chandeliers

Huh, yo Tommy Lasorda
Dodge bullets, dive into the water

True Lies

We have a multifaceted line here from Action. A line which may just look like a random assortment of phrases to the untrained ear but proves to be so much more when you look the song up on Rap Genius. Tommy Lasorda/Dodge bullets is straight forward enough. Tommy played for and managed the Dodgers. However, Bronson gets spicy on the back end, throwing his favorite sport into a Schwarzenegger reference. Arnold’s 1994 movie True Lies opens (apparently, again according to Rap Genius) with Arny diving into a lake to sneak into a private mansion party. Action being willing to dive regardless of the circumstances is not only ready to take on the Governors workload but is ready to take on bullets during! Lot going on in a dozen words there.

Drug & Cheese On a Roll Mix — Rare Chandeliers

Dive in, get my cock wet, Dive out, for a hot sec
Do a spinning back flip off the top step (Yea, we doing wild gymnastics)

Action, ever knowledgeable about the world of diving, is clued in to how many a diver first came from gymnastics shifting over to the pool to avoid the injuries associated with gymnastics. He shows here that you can be a diver (diving in and out) and still do the wild acrobatic stunts that draws athletes to gymnastics. I however want to address the genius description for this line which is insulting to both Action and plus sized divers everywhere. The author states “Because Bronson is a fat individual, it’s comical to hear him talk about wild moves he would never be able to do because it defies the laws of physics.” Um excuse me???? You wanna talk defying physics watch the tape of my performance at the 2015 Worcester City Championships and come talk. This is textbook size discrimination. I have no doubts Action could do a spinning backflip off the top step, and likely could do as many spins as he damn well pleased. The vision is without a doubt humorous, but impossible? I reject that wholesale, and have both reported and downvoted the post in question.

Brown Bag Wrap — Rare Chandeliers

Half a lion on my feet, well now you see me down under diving by the reef

People all too often when I told them I dove in college (and believe me I find a way to work it into conversations) they would go “oh… like scuba diving” and I’d go “no, the only thing I’m scuba diving into is your mother’s cooter.” It never got good laughs but I feel like Action would appreciate it.

Triple Backflip — Saaab Stories

Do a triple back flip into the red coupe
Skrrrt, we out

Despite what you’d probably think off of the name of the song, this one is light on diving references. I was hoping for a verse getting into technique on a perfect 206C (diving term, Action will get this) but it’s mostly about dicks, both other people’s being ripped off and his being held. C’est la vie. Saaab Stories is among Bronson’s least celebrated output and there’s no doubt that the complete lack of his famous diving lines plays a part in that.

Twin Peugots — Blue Chips 2

Front flips off the roof like a stunt double
My shorty doing kegels for her cunt muscle

This is a tough one. We’re not given any context as to what surface Action is jumping onto from the aforementioned roof. Assuming he’s talking about the roof of a home not a car it is entirely possible that he would be jumping into a pool, we just unfortunately cannot know for certain. Hopefully Action would be willing to provide a canonical annotation on this line so we can put the mystery to rest.

Midget Cough — Blue Chips 2

Dive out the chopper in the water, uh
No splash, Olympic shit

Here Bronson is getting back to his roots, taking immense pride in his technical diving prowess regardless of the circumstances. While Olympic stars like Tom Daley just have to jump off a steady unmoving platform Bronson is not so fortunate having to take his dives where he can get them, including out of a moving helicopter. Now that I mention it I feel like Bronson and Tom Daley might make a good synchro team in Tokyo if they’d let you mix countries. I’m sure there’s a bribe to be made that can make that happen.

A Light in the Addict — Mr. Wonderful

Sittin’ first class, feelin’ like shit though
Starin’ out the window with the mind of a schizo
Thinkin’ if I jump, will I feel it when I hit the ground?

Action here tackles the dark underbelly of the sport he is so clearly passionate about. Diving at its core is lifting yourself into the air and trusting the water underneath you to keep you alive. I always used to have nightmares the nights before meets where I would go to do a dive, untuck to look for the water, and see an abyss and wake up in a cold sweat (I kno really lame nightmare but whatever man). He’s coming to terms with life not sure if he likes what he sees, and what more sensible a way for a diver to go than to let gravity take you down to earth like it took you to water so many times before. However, there is light at the end of the proverbial tunnel (or water underneath the bridge if we wanna keep going with the theme)

Fuck that, I want the crown off anybody head

And the crown is yours for the taking Action.

Bonzai — Blue Chips 7000

Perfect 10 on the swan dive, uh (Uh)
I could never do no wrong in my mom’s eyes

I think its underrated exactly how difficult it is to get a perfect 10 on a dive, even one as straightforward as a 101A (known as a swan dive in layman’s terms). You have somewhere between three to seven judges sitting looking for absolutely anything to deduct points over. If you’re a little too close to the board or a little too far away from the board you’re getting points deducted. If you’re toes aren’t perfectly pointed say goodbye to half a point. If you’re as much as a degree into the pike position you’re getting points taken off. To accomplish such a feat Bronson would have to repeat the efforts of none other than Greg Louganis himself, who is no stranger to getting tens on 101A’s. . No wonder he can’t do any wrong in his mother’s eyes.

TANK — Blue Chips 7000

Uh, jump in the pool with the tool on me, shredded 240
Who gon’ stop me? You and whose army?

Love this line, really embodies the diver’s ethos. Here Action is talking about diving in a meet with his “tool” on him, his tool obviously being the repertoire of dives that he keeps on his “tool belt”.

While I will obviously have to continue to add the countless diving references that Bronson will be making in his future albums and mixtapes, this is all for now. In the meantime, if you need me I’ll be chartering a helicopter to see if I can get a perfect ten on a swan dive just like my idol.

 

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