But I feel worthless cause my shirts wasn't matching my gear
Now I'm just scratching the surface cause what's buried under there
Was a kid torn apart once his pop disappeared

from Jay Z – December 4th Lyrics on Rap Genius

Meaning

Jay didn’t have the money to properly coordinate his outfits since his family was broke, so he dealt drugs to earn extra money and buy more stuff.

After growing older though he understood that it wasn’t the fact that he didn’t have matching clothes but rather the fact that his father disappeared when he was 11 that bothered him. The expensive outfits were just a cover for how it felt inside, worthless.

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