By Baby-Boy and Heresy.
How is a family built? It is built by marriage, and birth. A family is united by unity, love, and respect. They share a bond that runs deeper than blood. The Diamond Dogs were created as a celebration of friendship between two amazing but very different people: Baby-Boy, and Lord Zepp. This union became not just a union of two people as brothers, but also as a union of ideas. What was born was The Diamond Dogs. Both Baby-Boy and Zepp came from very different backgrounds but the thing that united them was their love for art. The house this family grew up in was Pokez Mexican Restaurant. The establishment, since its inception, has been a locus for the humanities of the San Diego community through art, music, poetry, and other forms of multimedia. The restaurant’s walls are adorned with art from all over the community, and pictures of bands performing at Pokez. The restaurant itself surrounded by tattoo shops, clothing stores, recording studios, and music venues. The soil of this community was so rich in the arts, it provided the budding Diamond Dogs ample nutrition to grow, flourish, and spread.
And it has spread…Since it’s beginning the Diamond Dogs family has grown exponentially, and has spread to other cities across America.
But what is the meaning of Diamond Dogs? Every name has a meaning, and in this meaning conclusions can be drawn about not just the personality created by the name, but also the story and it’s history. When we separate the two parts of the name we are looking at a dichotomy united by friendship. A Diamond is often referred to as a “girl’s best friend,” and a Dog as “man’s best friend.” A Diamond takes a long time to form. It is made from organic and inorganic materials that fuse through eons of pressure. This analogy can be extended to what makes us who we are; the pressures of the world around us forms us into Diamonds. As we mature, this pressure has made us hard and strong. Upon the discovery of a Diamond, potential is immediately seen. We see this potential in each other. We all have the potential for greatness, and our lives of struggle and pain have made us strong. These Rough Diamonds are taken in, shaped and polished, until the true nature of it’s beauty is revealed. When an individual enters the Diamond Dogs, they are viewed the same way, as a “Rough Diamond.” Upon the discovery of this potential, it is our purpose to form and polish the Rough Diamond and reveal it’s beauty.
The second part of the name reveals another side to it’s personality. The dog is man’s best friend. It is a loyal companion. Through thick and thin, you can count on it being by your side. It’s this celebration of friendship, bound by loyalty and love, which makes the symbol of the Dog equally important. Another facet is that a dog’s parents don’t necessarily have to be the same breed. This corresponds to the mixture of individuals in the Diamond Dogs; few of us are the same breed. We are an eclectic mix of individuals from all walks of life. We represent the true vision of America’s foundation, as a melting pot of cultures. The Diamond Dogs break this down on an even further level to create a melting pot of sub-cultures. These sub-cultures range from everything including (but definitely not limited to): graffiti artists, tattoo artists, students, teachers, poets, DJs, musicians, producers, clothing designers, piercers, and business owners/entrepreneurs.
We are bound under the family name of Diamond Dogs, and in this family is a culture of its own. Everything from the way we greet each other, to the way we show ourselves in public is a constructed ritual. Diamonds always shine, and we shine by our actions and how we carry ourselves. We can be spotted in public easily. Regardless of our particular style, we have Diamond Dogs emblazoned upon the clothes we wear. These clothes are custom created by designer Leafar Seyer, who uses symbols not just of Diamonds and Dogs, but also different images of religious and spiritual iconography. The way we greet one another is known as the “Diamond Blast.” This pounding of fists and blasting open of the hands is symbolic in the notion that, “only a Diamond can break a Diamond.” This is exclusive only to the way we greet each other. The colors of the flag we stand under are expressed in black and gold. This is symbolic of the nature of our souls, which through infinite darkness, always shine through. We are Always Gold. The symbol of the Diamond we create with both hands symbolizes the necessity of two parts coming together to create what we are, this is our unity. These rituals not only show who we are, but they also provide a cultural unity that is lacking in our society today. The Diamond Dogs is also a celebration and embracing masculinity. However, in our society, the rites of passage to becoming men have been lost. Allow me to present an example of the ritual of becoming a man in a barazilian tribe:
“One day a young Brazilian Indian is playing in the river with a beautiful girl, the chief has noticed the boy is interest in the girl for some time now. This awakening of sexual interest in the boy is a signal to the wise chief. So the chief appears on the bank of the river with his wife and some of the tribal elders. They surprise the boy at play with the young girl. The chief then yells out loud, “Boy, your time has come to die.” Everyone seems profoundly shaken. The chief’s wife, playing the part of all good women who become great mothers asks, “Must he die?” The chief threateningly replies, “Yes, the boy must die!” We then see a fire lit nighttime scene in which the older men in the tribe seemingly tortures the boy, and forces him into the forest vines. He is being eaten alive by jungle ants. He moves in agony, his body mutilated by the jaws of the hungry ants. He fears the worst. The night comes to an end, and finally the sun comes up. And the boy is still alive and breathing. He is then taken down to the river by the older men in his tribe and bathed. The clinging ants are washed away from his body. The chief then raises his voice, and says with a proud heart, “The boy is dead, and the man is born…the sleeper has awakened!” He is them celebrated, and allowed to marry, for he is man now. As he takes on a man’s responsibilities and identity, he is moved first into the position of a brave in the tribe, then, into the position of a chief.”
However, rites such as these have been abandoned. Instead, men are left with pseudo-rituals like the military for example; the fantasy or idea is that the humiliation and forced non-identity of boot camp will make a man out of you. The gangs of our major cities are another manifestation of pseudo-initiation. And so is the prison system, which is, in large, run by gangs. In city gangs, more often than not, the initiate gets jumped in or a murder is required of the would-be initiate. This offers a form of masculinity that is skewed, stunted, and false. We feel by our carefully constructed rituals that we are providing another rite of passage to manhood, and a positive output for our masculine energy. By channeling this energy into our strengths, we can create true beauty within ourselves, and all around us. It creates a better environment for expression, and is strengthened by our group mentality.
People through out time, look to identify themselves through groups. This is because humans function well in groups, i.e. The Masons, religious groups, athletic and competitive teams, and governments, and so on. But, that’s also why you see race-specific gangs. And that’s why we, the Diamond Dogs are different. It’s because we offer an outlet for our masculinity through music, art, friendship, and family, all in a positive way. We also have women who embrace their masculinity, which is not just a male force. Masculinity and femininity are two balancing forces that exist within all of us, and the Diamond Dogs isn’t just a boy’s club.
We need to be good fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, friends, and neighbors to each other. We should help our communities. This is the best way we know how. We will build a safe haven for how we express ourselves, and allow a place for the community to do the same. That is our long-term goal. We want to open a large facility that offers the space for multimedia events like art shows and large concerts. By pooling together our efforts, and with support from our community, we think this is a very attainable goal. The art shows and concerts to be put on will use artists and bands approved by the Diamond Dogs. With painters like Troy Boy, Silent, Baby-Boy, Surge, Terror, and Lord Zepp we can put on massive shows that cover the walls with art. We can fill a space with music of all sorts with Velvet (hip-hop artist), Terror (band: The Widows), DJ Heresy (band: Building Better Monsters, UCSD student), DJ Blexia (band: Starline Theorie), DJ E3 (producer and hip-hop artist) DJ Strange (band: The Locust), Hectic (band: Transfer), T-Bird (band: Starline Theorie), DJ Palace (producer and hip-hop artist), Shine (band: In Perfect Agony), DJ Manners, and Suga Bear (producer and hip-hop artist). We could fill the tables with food from Pokez (owned by the Reyes family), The Malt Shop (owned by Galaxy), and Sushi (made by sushi chef Jaws). We can have fashion shows by Leafar Seyer, Credence (of Waffo), and Baby Rey (of Love Destroyers). We have computer and graphic designers like Spider (who operates DiamondDogsCFC.org) and Vegas (graphic designer). We have DJ Dead Boy (music producer), and J-Storm and Empire (film production). We also have Crow (of DUB magazine) in LA and Cairo (head of Diamond Dogs New Orleans and band member of Tori Cobras), and last but not least, master-craftsman Metallica. Plus, with the plethora of other Diamond Dogs and supporters we can have all the promotions handled. This is a small sample of what we can provide, and with more support, we can make this into something even bigger.
We also understand that in changing the community, we need to look forward to the future. This is why Diamonds like Bliss, RJ, and T-Bird have been so important. Bliss is a SDSU graduate who is currently a schoolteacher and is entering graduate school. T-Bird is a martial arts instructor who is passing knowledge of a most sacred art, and discipline (both mental and physical). Also, RJ is a teacher in one of the things we love most: music, which we Diamonds feel is an integral part of a child’s development.
We are a large family, and in seeing not just the potential in each other, but also the potential of our group, we want to take Diamond Dogs as high as it can go. I guess it can be said that life’s perhaps most fundamental dynamic is the attempt to move from a lower form of existence and consciousness, to a higher and deeper level. We, the Diamond Dogs, have potential for greatness, and as the scholar William Arthur Ward once said, “Greatness is not found in possessions, power, position, or prestige. It is discovered in goodness, humility, service, and character.”With respect, and love -The Diamond Dogs