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11 to 20 of 91 columns
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11. the year of parenting dangerously
amina's daddy states his case
general - lifestyle
8.18.11 : feature column!

It will go so fast. That’s what everyone tells you when you have a child, when you’re about to have a child, when you think you want to have a child, when you even look at a child -- enjoy each moment because they go fast. I didn’t really believe it. I was a child once, and, for me, those years weren’t fast at all. 4th Grade: Crawling. 7th grade: Sluggish. High school? So ponderous, I thought we were moving backwards on some Benjamin Button ish. But I felt that way because I was the ...
12. morning sickness
from the unpublished short story archives, circa 2002
writing - sample
7.18.11 : feature column!

Note: We never, ever run fiction or short stories, but 1) Jason has been a staff member forever and deserves the nod and 2) The story below is just that good. Raymond Harris awoke one morning at the hollow sound of Momma’s face being smacked so hard that she staggered across the kitchen and hit her forehead on the sink. He sat up in his piss-stained bed, then ran to the door and cracked it open just enough to see without being seen. Bobby, Momma’s boyfriend, was manhandling her dutifully -...
13. jason in the middle
making meaning of middle age, mortality and milestones
general - lifestyle
6.16.11 : feature column!

The problem with being middle aged is that no one ever, not even once, takes five minutes out of their life and pictures themselves being middle aged beforehand. Youth is wasted on the young, the famous saying goes, and during my youth, I was too self-absorbed to picture myself as being anything more than young, senile or dead. I could conceive of death (I’m from inner-city Toledo, death surrounded me) and I knew I would grow old someday (I was a church kid, old people surrounded me), but for so...
14. my lunch with tommy
race, cinema and economics, live from beverly hills
film - discussion
5.16.11 : feature column!

Every so often, when I need to remind myself how close I am (physically, at least) to the A-list crowd in Los Angeles, I treat myself to lunch at an expensive restaurant often frequented by celebrities. It was a breezy Wednesday, in the low 70s, and the Beverly Hills hotspot was buzzing. As I was being led to my seat, I passed a table with an Academy-Award winning actor, and another with a blond, bubbly reality TV star. Still, I was there with them, in the middle of a weekday, so my presence was...
15. the girl who had everything
elizabeth taylor 1932-2011
film - appreciation
4.13.11 : feature column!

Even after all that has been written, after she has been rhapsodized and canonized, it is still not redundant to remark that in her youth and deep into middle age, she was a woman of unreal beauty. But Elizabeth Taylor was a great actress, my favorite actress, and, in saying that, I’m aware that she was neither the most talented nor most ambitious actress and had a light, sometimes shrill voice. Most of her work past 1967 is viewable almost only for its campiness, and, as many triumphs as she...
16. an interview with jaimyon parker
renaissance performer tackles faith, friendship, typecasting
film - career
3.14.11 : feature column!

Jaimyon Parker is a Houston-raised, Los Angeles-based actor who also produced, wrote and co-stars in Iris, which recently wrapped a successful four-week run at the Complex Theatre in Hollywood. Iris is a powerful, memorable tale of the damaged title character (played pitch perfectly by Lauren Elliott) who is taken through a review of the missteps of her troubled life by a sarcastic but potent demon named Bastiel (Parker). Over the next 90 minutes, abortion, drug abuse, incest, sisterhood and fai...
17. making tha profound sound's missing you video
the difference between your video treatment and real life
music - process
2.14.11 : feature column!

So, to make a long story short, I'm friends with a group of young guys who have an up and coming rap group called Tha Profound Sound. We had been talking back and forth for awhile about my shooting a music video for them. Finally, on January 1st of this year, it happened. As a means of taking you into my process, I'd like to show you my original treatment for the video, along with my comments regarding what stayed and what didn't. First, the video. Now, the treatment. With my comments in []....
18. 10 things most don't know about martin luther king
news - general
1.14.11 : feature column!

Sometimes, becoming a legend can be the worst thing to happen to your mission. Since his assassination in 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr. has become deified and simplified to the point, that, for several generations, the complexity and depth of his life and commission has been neutered. Yes, okay, he did the "I Have A Dream" speech, and it was a great speech, but if that's all you really know about him, you missed the point. (And if you think that he freed the slaves, as I heard a young black kid ...
19. black swan
a review
film - criticism
12.13.10 : feature column!

A lot has been made of the fact that Darren Aronofsky, brilliant director of our times, has gone from making a movie about a down and out wrestler to making a movie about an up and coming ballerina. This is often presented as though it is a seismic shift, when it is actually the same thing. Most dancers live with a startling urgency, as if they already know that their time is limited and that their body will betray them -- immediately and violently -- the minute they stop dan...
20. an interview with ava duvernay
film - appreciation
11.12.10 : feature column!

Last Friday night, I saw the marvelous I Will Follow, the narrative feature directorial debut of publicity maven Ava DuVernay. I Will Follow stars Salli Richardson-Whitfield as a grieving woman cleaning the house of her recently deceased aunt (Beverly Todd). The film won the Audience Award in its world premiere at the UrbanWorld Film Festival in New York, was showcased at the Chicago Film Festival and played to a sold out crowd at the AFI Fest in Los Angeles. Shot in 15 days on a shoestring budg...
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re: on meeting adam yauch, who had nothing to lose

Awesome is all I can say about the writing, as well as what is being written about.

re: where do broken hearts go

good supporting details. strong voice.

re: where do broken hearts go

Thoughtful and well-written.

re: where do broken hearts go

Beautiful and all about being nothing but human.

re: requiem for a heavyweight

Though my exposure to rap back in those days was minimal, I at least knew Heavy D by name. Your column makes me want to learn about what I was missing. Love how you added your own personal reminiscences as well, bringing it back down to a level we can all relate to, even if we weren't fans.

re: the year of parenting dangerously

Please keep up the Jasonphilia. Loved reading this.

re: the girl who had everything

A beautiful tribute. To the point.

re: 10 things most don't know about martin luther king

Excellent. To the point, well researched (I assume), not preachy, not dishy. Very well done.

re: a tale of two sidneys

Well written, researched, opinioned. And the added visual aids were excellent.
There are also a bunch of movies I now want to see.

re: pacino, attica & dog day afternoon

a great "close reading" of this pivotal scene

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