Shaliek Jenkins is a Los Angeles-based content creator, standup comedian, writer, and DJ hailing from New York. Jenkins is currently navigating the landscape of pitching an original series to some networks and platforms and trying to “belong” while carrying an air of avoidance at the same time. You can catch him DJ’ing at Brandon Wardell’s Teen Party on March 24th. This week, Jenkins talked to me about three of his favorite tweets, plus emotions, his history with social media, and the instant connection felt through being online.
when you’re happy for a moment but then the existential depression kicks unexpectedly pic.twitter.com/Ys8y09u0EL— lionel nietzsche (@hateshaliek) December 18, 2016
Jenkins: I do this thing where I record dogs without their owners consent and I really felt like this dog mirrored how I’m usually feeling. I might just be projecting but I’m sure dogs can get existential too.
What are the emotions that you find most lead to you tweeting?
Whenever I’m in a distant, neurotic state of mind is when I’ll most likely put something out on Twitter. I like looking at things through a magnifying glass so I always try to write or make something that deconstructs the rapidly moving and ambivalent climate of original content on social media.
What are your favorite subjects to tweet about?
Mostly introspective, existential thoughts, ideas I need get out of my head and general shenanigans. I try to keep it multifaceted cause I have an issue connecting with people on a more visceral level so I try to explore the different ways I can invoke any type of feeling with the things I post. It’s always based on how I’m feeling though. I don’t like the facade of forcing yourself to talk, write, tweet or make content just because it’s relatable or cause you’d like to appeal to a certain audience. So I try to keep it varied and honest in the hopes that folks on the internet find some type of interest beyond the tweets and content they usually ingest.
if a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, it becomes a Tidal exclusive — lionel nietzsche (@hateshaliek) February 20, 2017
We live in an age where people pledge allegiance to streaming services, which is so odd cause these hard working artists still get paid in pennies from it. At least that drunk kid aux cord DJ’ing through Spotify is loving it.
What would you say are the best and worst things about being online?
Anything feels possible through the instant connection with others. It can get addicting knowing that you’re never truly alone, especially if you have folks out there willing to listen to you and basically keep tabs on your personal life. People get lost though and tend to forget about the things that make this thing very special. Remember when going to the internet felt like an event? The omnipresence of the internet now gives it this ominous feel, you know? We do manage to find the great things in it though. I’ve made amazing friendships and connections through just keeping up appearances all over the internet. However, I can’t wait to log off and call it day.
Do you use other social media as much as you use Twitter? Do you have a favorite ~platform~?
Twitter is actually the newest platform I just hopped on, I’ve been around for a while! Some folks know me from the old days of editing videos called ‘YouTube Poops.’ Most folks know me from Tumblr, Soundcloud and Facebook though, that’s where I truly thrived. I used to run a fairly popular blog under the moniker badgoku14 on Tumblr, and most of the folks that knew me on there somehow end up finding me wherever I go. There’s nothing on there though so it’s hard to find the remnants of my ‘internet legacy’ because I end up nuking everything when keeping up appearances and posting content becomes a chore. I just throw up the peace sign and start all over again. You can find some things from 2006 to current day if you try hard enough though!
i started singing ‘chemtrails’ in the tune to the ducktales theme a half hour ago so i just had to make this real quick: pic.twitter.com/Gmf83VpsyA— lionel nietzsche (@hateshaliek) February 7, 2017
Sometimes I just sing certain words to songs that really shouldn’t be put together and I felt like I had to make this just to get it out of my head. Sometimes I regret it. It can be fun though.
How long does it usually take you to make a mashup like this one? What’s the longest and shortest you’ve spent on a video for Twitter?
I’ve been editing videos for over a decade now. It was a hobby that served as the foundation to where I am now. It surprisingly doesn’t take long at all! Most of them take about twenty to thirty minutes. I often beat out video ideas quickly because they run my thoughts if I just ignore them! The longest I’ve spent was an entire day. It was this silly concept for a rhythm RPG.
Do you ever scrap an idea for a video while you’re already making it?
All the damn time. I put out things regularly out of my own volition, so I make around four to six short form videos a day, and sometimes things just don’t work. The ones that do work though…oh man, it feels great for something so useless. I’m having fun though. Isn’t that what this is all about? However, I do get commissioned by certain companies to make videos for them so it’s also about cashing these checks. Having fun and money, yeah.
Jenny Nelson lives, writes, and perform is Brooklyn.