As I grow older, I realize that folk near and dear to me will die. I expect this and as hard as it is to prepare for, I know one day I'll have to deal with the death of my elders. Weird as it may sound, it can be harder for me to deal with the death of those in the media. These artists and pop culture icons remind me of certain time periods in my life and their death makes me look a bit more at my own mortality. A Tribe Called Quest represents the dawning of hip hop (for me) and my coming into my own. When I learned of Phife Dawg's passing, it hit hard. He's only 5 years older than I...I realize he had to deal with the harsh realities of diabetes and kidney disease and now there's no more suffering. That's a blessing. And he left a gift...RIP Phife Dawg.