Action Bronson’s web series, Fuck, That’s Delicious, became required viewing this past year for fans of both hip-hop and food. The series follows the Queens rapper on his gastronomically inclined adventures around the world, from Noma to NOLA.
While Bam Bam oozes easygoing charisma and good-humor, his burly cousin—and frequent musical partner—Big Body Bes has emerged as the series’ breakout star. The man responsible for some next-level spoken-word street poetry and several intros on Bronson’s projects tagged along for Action’s globe-trotting missions, providing comic relief whenever he emerged. Whether he was poking at heirloom tomato salads in New Orleans or eating halal in Copenhagen, Body never failed to speak his mind.
Realizing that Body needed his own platform, Munchies eventually gave the East New York native a clip of his own:
Spotlighting Body in his local bodega proved powerful: He delivered what essentially amounted to a brief TED Talk on the neighborhood corner store, revealing several hacks every city-dwelling person should take to heart. The episode, unfortunately, was too short, so we took it upon ourselves to give him a call and dig deeper. Here, Big Body Bes drops knowledge on how to optimize your dollar, what foods to avoid, and why you need to defend your bodega at all costs.
Picking the perfect bodega is all about relationships.
“It’s part of your neighborhood. It’s part of your duty to defend it. They’re the people you see every day. It’s someone who takes care of you, regardless if it’s a business or not. They give you a service that you appreciate. If you go out there in the morning to get a dutch or a sandwich, the guy who runs it has to be up, not sleeping. I respect that. To have a 24-hour store open all the time, that’s priceless.”
Risks will always be involved—but embrace them.
“They have the little macaroni salad. The guy working doesn’t know what he’s doing and he refuses to wear gloves. That’s a risk right there. But don’t get me wrong: That shit’s still fire. I gotta live my life the way I wanna live it. I take risks like that.”
But some items you should never f*ck with.
“I’ll eat that Boar’s Head meat that’s been hanging up over there, but I’m not gonna eat no potato salad that’s been sitting in mayonnaise for days.”
Know the deals.
“You can get the pre-made burger in the deli-meat window for $2.50 or $3. You open that burger up, throw it in the microwave, and then you add lettuce and tomatoes, a little ketchup. That shit’s fire right there.”
Make sure they don’t finesse the meat.
“I shouldn’t have to tell you to ‘hook it up’ or ‘make it nice.’ You should know. Me, I don’t play. I get emotional with food when I’m hungry. If you give me a bad meal, give me some skimpy shit, I’m not gonna have that, man. I flip out. I don’t play with hunger. When I wanna eat, I wanna eat. I don’t care what it costs. You could charge me extra, but don’t give me bullshit. Hook my shit the fuck up.”
Hold yourself to a spending threshold.
“Straight up: I’m coming to cop a drink and a sandwich and I’m not trying to spend more than $6 or $7 dollars. This is what it is, man. Or else I would go to a fuckin’ sit-down restaurant.”
One bodega hack tops them all.
“At the end of the day, if you’re not messing with the cold cuts, you can always grab a can of tuna and a roll, and they’ll make that shit for you. They’ll hook that up real quick. And all it costs is $0.50 for the roll, $0.50 for the slice of cheese, and $1 for the can of tuna. Have the dude throw on a scoop of mayo for free and you’ve got a fucking tuna melt for $2.
Then get yourself a nice fuckin’ Arizona Iced Tea—in the can ice-cold—for $1. Come on, man, you kidding me? A $3 meal?! If you really feel like wildin’, get a $0.50 bag of chips and $0.50 loosie. It’s crazy.”
Seriously: Go out there and get acquainted with your local bodega.
“You got some people who move to New York from out of town. They come in these neighborhoods like Bed-Stuy and Bushwick. They seclude themselves. They don’t want to come into the neighborhood and chill, they want to do their own thing. You gotta appreciate your surroundings and appreciate your culture.”