I love Cardi B. It’s not an exaggeration to say that my fondness for the hip-hop sensation verges on the obsessive. I was first introduced to Cardi as most millennials are introduced to most things, through the world of Instagram. Ever since I gazed into a tiny Instagram-sized square of Cardi and saw her staring back at me, I was hooked.
When people ask me why I love Cardi B so much, I’m never entirely sure how to answer. And I suppose that’s because I’ve never paused in my adoration to ask myself that question. But as I continue make my love for Cardi abundantly clear to friends, colleagues and those I pass on the street, naturally the question of why I love her is being posed more and more. So, I thought it important to ask myself why I hold such an unwavering love for a woman that I have never met. Particularly in the wake of her Grammy’s success, and because I have a rather quiet afternoon, this seems more important than ever.
Let’s start with the obvious, Cardi B is simply an amazing musician. I love her for the same reason I love all of my favourite musicians. Alas, I accept that people’s music tastes vary, but if you’re not a fan of Cardi B’s kick ass hip-hop tunes (why not?) then there are still myriad reasons why she is the number one woman in my life right now, and probably should be in yours.
A simple Google image search of Ms. B will result in a plethora of quite frankly iconic satirical choices that are impossible not to respect her for. Whether that is the head-to-toe leopard print ensemble (complete with glasses lest we forget) that she sported at Paris fashion week. Or, more recently her revival of a striking archival Mugler look for the Grammy’s, the gal knows how to make a statement with her clothes. Wardrobe lust aside, other reasons for my indefinite membership in the Cardi B fan club include but are not exclusive to her dancing skills, her innate ability to turn noises into words and her love for dogs.
But one factor I kept returning to when exploring my love for the rapper was her honesty. It is rare to see a celebrity as uncensored as Cardi in the Instagram Age, when portrayals of those in the spotlight, and even those who aren’t, are consistently veiled in a Valencia filter.
Representation on social media is a very separate issue, and nobody owes anyone the honesty that Cardi B presents online; God knows my own Instagram is a far cry from Cardi’s journalistic account of life. However, it is this contrast from the masses which makes her so endearing. As, unlike the rest of us, Cardi doesn’t really care what anyone thinks. She very much knows who she is, and owns it. Whether that be her previous work as a stripper for which many have attempted to vilify her, her relationships, lifestyle or mothering choices.
So, whether you turn her off as soon as she comes on the radio, or stayed up all night to get tickets to her tour, I think we could all do with being a little more Cardi. Life can be hard and criticism hard to deal with. But next time you find yourself doubting one of your choices (why did I put jam on my bagel and not Nutella?!) just ask yourself what would Cardi do and own it (and always pick Nutella).