Everyone wants to pick a lyrical fight in hip-hop these days. With so many rookie rappers trying to measure up to MCs twice their size, you've got to applaud Rick Ross' self-proclaimed beef with Eminem. Though Ross has taken repeated jabs at the Detroit rapper, Slim Shady, who clearly doesn't respond well to provocation -- just ask Mariah Carey -- has failed to respond to any of his attacks. "He's smart," Ross told MTV about Em not retaliating with a dis track, "That's what I'm waiting for. That'll be a gift -- a great Christmas present for me."

Ross acknowledged -- and sounded a bit jealous even -- that Mariah was able to strike a chord with Shady that he has yet to, and the Miami rapper entertained the idea of a collaborative effort with the pop diva. "Shout-out to Mariah Carey, she needs to reach out to me," he said. "We could eradicate some things." Despite all of his valiant efforts to ignite a battle with Em, Ross did give Shady props for his stellar work on the recent collaborative single 'Forever.' "On a better note, I wanna shout-out Eminem. I heard a record he did with Cash Money's own Lil Wayne and Drake and Kanye West. Eminem, you're smart. I understand ... we all know what you doing now. You're moving on to better things," Ross said. "Like I said, he might wanna do a record with me. We here. Triple Cs."

Rick Ross may have had that last part backwards. He might want to consider begging Em for a guest appearance or two. With all said and done, it might do Ross well to give 'Forever' one more spin on his iPod and realize that enlisting the wrath of Shady could mean homicide for his rapping career -- or at least his pride.

Ross and his crew will release their new mixtape, 'Maybach Music Part III: White Sand,' this fall.