By Brenna Lilly
12:45pm: Lil Wayne is brought in upon a waterbed, carried sedan-style like a painting of god. He is fully clothed. His face is skyward, but his eyes are closed in contemplation.
1:05pm: A woman in a replica Princess Leia bikini brings Wayne a kiwi seltzer and fellates him.
1:17pm: Wayne basks.
1:48pm: A delivery driver from UberEats comes backstage to McJoin us, three Oreo McFlurries in hand. One of Wayne’s posse stirs promethazine cough syrup into the first McFlurry, and feeds it to Lil Wayne with a small plastic spoon.
2:15pm: Wayne is on the move! I repeat, Wayne is on the move! He’s pacing now, back and forth. His eyes have now opened and he looks at us all with wonder. What has he learned?
2:37pm: He is holding a picture of Drake’s bicep, emblazoned with his own visage, muttering, “Don’t dream it, be it. Don’t dream it, be it. Don’t dream it, be it.”
3:00pm: Promethazine McFlurry #2, this time with a McStraw.
3:05pm: Wayne accepts a Skype call from a young girl, who I later find out is his niece. “I can’t wait to see you succeed, baby girl. You are strong and wise. I’m proud of you.” He stays on the call with her for 2 hours, talking about her education.
5:08pm: Going down a line of everyone backstage, including tech crew, Wayne holds up one unique dread to each of their noses, offering a sniff. Each person in line expresses their gratitude. “Thank you, Tunechi,” they speak, bowing gently, hands clasped as if in prayer. Tunechi mutters in affirmation, nodding.
5:26pm: I am offered a sacred, melted, bright-purple spoonful of prometha-Flurry. I graciously decline.
5:27pm: I indulge.
5:38pm: Lil Wayne gives a smooch to each and every youngster back here.
5:45pm: Wayne teaches us How To Love. I can’t feel my legs.
6:13pm: It must be noted, Wayne has changed his socks at least seven times; this is the eighth. Not one of us is allowed to see his toes.
6:33pm: Lil Wayne is SCREAMING now. About what? No one can tell. His is inconsolable. He heaves sobs, seemingly interminably, until a new character, someone who had accompanied neither Wayne’s posse nor stage crew to the campus, comes over and hums the Banana Boat Song (Day-O) into Wayne’s extremely small ear.
6:35pm: Wayne’s silence holds all of us hostage.
6:49pm: It is almost time for Wayne to emerge anew. He utters guttural, almost occult mouth-sounds, which I soon realize are only lyrics to his smash hit “A Milli,” specifically the bridge, “A MILLI A MILLI MILLI A MILLI A MILLI MILLI A MILLI A MILLI MILLI A
6:59pm: Wayne is doing jumping jacks. He falls down, but picks himself back up again. “Every time, like clockwork.” mutters a personal stagehand of Wayne’s. His hypeman is already on stage, getting Wayne ready for what he does best. But before he goes on to wow all of Hofstra’s Intramural Fields, he stops and shakes my hand, kissing me on the forehead and looking me in the eyes.
His face is three inches from mine. “I appreciate you, kid.”
7:00pm: Wayne breaks his way through the curtain. I can feel that he was telling the truth. He leaves behind a trail of slime, which I later slip in.
I cannot feel my legs.