H-Town Lean: A Look Into The History of Purple Drank

H-Town Lean: A Look Into The History of Purple Drank

What they don't want you to know about H-Town's most notorious drank.
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Call it syrup. Call it sizzurp. Call it the purple. It's that dirty Sprite. Even call it that 'drank.' We all know that's what it is. It has been referenced in every era of hip-hop, starting with DJ Screw in the '90s. This, however, is not where it began.

Lean, a combination of promethazine and codeine, began in the 1960s, as a way for authors to access some part of their imagination that lies deep within. It was originally used by Lance Scott Walker, an author native to Houston. Originally, creative artists in Houston used Robitussin and beer together. As newer forms of alcohol became available to the public, the ingredients of lean were also adapted. With the introduction of wine coolers, the original mix was changed. The blues musicians of the time lived in the third and fifth wards, which we know today to be some of the roughest neighborhoods in Houston. As aspiring rappers assimilated into this fraternity of musicians, the lifestyle was also something they emulated. As hip-hop became the lifeline of the city of Houston from the late '80s to the early '90s, lean became the staple for social gatherings and became an identifying feature of why Houston hip-hop was unique.

One of the things often overlooked about lean — likely because of its presence in the hip-hop scene — is its potentially life-threatening impact on one's health. First of all, let’s talk about what lean usually contains today. From the late '90s to today, the premiere ingredients in the mix are promethazine and codeine. Although these ingredients are available only as prescription medication, obtaining promethazine and codeine is not a challenge for those who seek it. The danger behind promethazine and codeine taken together in larger-than-dose quantities is that they are in fact anti-psychotic drugs and can have the side effect of paranoia. The danger is not just an urban myth or Onion article-type satire — it is real. Many attribute the deaths of Houston legends like DJ Screw and Pimp-C to lean and how it posed serious dangers to their health. Lil Wayne's seizures have also been linked to his heavy use of lean. Lil Wayne has since come out in public and condemned the use of the drug, while also acknowledging the degree of his addiction early in his career. All things considered, although one would think that cough syrup and Sprite are both designed to be ingested, they were never meant to be used together as a recreational narcotic.

The drink has even moved out of the hip-hop circles and made its way into the sports realm. In 2005, JaMarcus Russell, who is the poster child for draft busts, was episodically drowsy and unable to perform. While many speculated that lean was involved, it was confirmed only when he was arrested for possession of codeine-based cough syrup. In 2006, Terrance Kiel of the Chargers was also arrested while sending cough syrup containing codeine to one of his friends. He was cut from the team immediately. Teams and players should understand the severity of this recreational drug and be vigilant in enforcing a zero tolerance policy, as well as encourage individuals addicted to the drug to seek help.

H-Town and drank might go hand in hand, but understanding the risks behind its recreational use is important. While we can still bump to songs like “Drank in My Cup” and albums like Dirty Sprite 2, maybe recreational lean use is better suited to stay in the songs.

Cover Image Credit: Tumblr

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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20 Amazing Songs You Need For Your Travel Music Videos

Planning to make your new travel video? Use one of these songs as your perfect background music!

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Based on the mood you're currently feeling, here are 20 different songs categorized by when you should use them for a traveling music video:


1. For Those Classic Summer Feels

"Harvest Moon" by Poolside

"Gone" by JR JR

"Hold My Hand" by Jess Glynne

"Summer" by Calvin Harris

For all the lake adventures and mission trips, these are the perfect songs to put behind them to share your experience. Using these songs, your video can have a perfect summer vibe to it!

2. For A Good Winter Vacation

"The Days" by Avicii

"Something Just Like This" by The Chainsmokers

"Roses" by The Chainsmokers

"It Ain't Me" by Kygo ft. Selena Gomez

It's hard finding a perfect song for a cold winter day. These songs can work amazingly to any snowy adventurous video you've made for your winter break.

3. For Everyday Adventures

"Shut Up and Dance" by WALK THE MOON

"To Let Myself Go" by The Avener

"All That Matters" by Justin Bieber

"Youth" by Troye Sivan

We all have our daily vlogs filled with school and friends. These songs can put a touch of amusement and thrill to these videos!

4. For The Perfect Spring Break At The Beach

"Steal My Girl" by One Direction

"The Nights" by Avicii

"Runaways" by Galantis

"Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen

Every girl has the perfect week at the beach once a year! These songs can show off how incredible your experience with your friends was.

5. For Those City Nights

"Bullet Train" by Stephen Swartz

"Love You Like A Love Song" by Selena Gomez

"G.O.M.D." by J. Cole

"The Heart Wants What It Wants" by Selena Gomez

We all take visits to the city and never have the right songs to make a video with. These upbeat songs will make your city vlog into a perfect travel video!

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