This is still funnie!
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Beach Cities Scooter Club President Melanie Cooper
This past weekend, Mrs. Jaycee and I, were out shopping and ended up having a really cool adventure. I was busy teaching this Double cheese burger a lesson, when we noticed a whole bunch of folks on scooters. Now, I've seen bike clubs, car clubs and motorcycle clubs but never a scooter club. Luckily, Mrs. Jaycee, had her trusty digital camera with her and my mouth was in good working order.
I approached the group which numbered over a hundred people and introduced myself. It was sunny, the air was mostly smog free and hell ,I'd never seen over a hundred folks on Vespas before. This ish was coooooooooooool! Anyone remember the Honda Elites back around 1986 and how big a fad they became? Even dudes were riding those.
So I first met a young dude wearing shorts and Doc Martins and I asked him about all the folks and what they were doing. Well, this is the Beach Cities Scooter Club and we are meeting up for a ride. He was kind enough to introduce me to the President of the Beach Cities Scooter Club, his Mom! So, I spoke with Melanie Cooper, the founder and President of the club.
Mista Jaycee: So, how did this come about?
Melanie Cooper: Well, I went to Meet Up.com and typed in scooters and well I started a club. Soon, there were others who contacted me and joined.
Mista Jaycee: Now, why a scooter and not a Harley or a Schwinn?
Melanie Cooper: I own a motorcycle, but this is Southern California, and nothing looks better than Southern California on a scooter.
Mista Jaycee: All these people belong to Beach Cities Scooter Club?
Melanie Cooper: No, there are several other clubs that have found us and joined us for today's ride.
Mista Jaycee: Cool! Who knew there were scooter clubs and all these people would get together? It just proves what me and Mrs. Jaycee say to our daughter. Get in where you fit in!
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Monday, May 25, 2009
What the Heck is going on with all these TECHS! I predict that this new TECH policy and all these B/S Flagrants will lead to the NBA being a counterpart of the NFL, the NO FUN LEAGUE!
Let these MEN play Basketball!
I reserve my overall judgement, in this case but if the facts, prove that this was a bad shoot, then I want the officers arrested, and charged with manslaughter, and negligent homicide. Not that Bull Ish, Civil Rights Violations in Federal Court. No, the City and State needs to send that message, then the Federal needs to put the icing on it.
BE Careful! BE Mindful! BE Prayerful!
Here's the link to the story!
Friday, May 22, 2009
Go Lakers! Win Game 3
Thursday, May 21, 2009
As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all the impurities.
The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
I saw the new Star Trek. Now when the homeboy Serious Black said the Zoe Saldana was gonna be the new Uhura, I was like %&%()$$+##! She's beautiful but she's a Honey baby and Uhura was a super Soul Chocolate Sista! They gonna try to re-write the Trek!
This is Funnie! Warning! Some Curse Words!
Friday, May 15, 2009
I loved him as a NBA Player and loved his first Album which I will be listening to tonight. He was one Smoove Jazz Player that didn't gross me out! He will be missed greatly!
BE Mindful! BE Prayeful! BE Careful!
I guess becoming the first Black editor of the HARVARD LAW REVIEW is not that big a deal. HARVARD's (must be a little commuter school) been around what...over 100 years. No Big Deal! Becoming an Illinois State Senator, and winning the United States Presidency by a huge margin to become the First (Declared) Black President of the United States of America which is what over 200 years old. That's not a big enough achievement!
Taking on the Presidency in the midst of Two wars and the worst economic situation in the history of the country since well the GREAT DEPRESSION! Yeah, well.....
But "Bam Bam" has style and class. Real style, real class! He's got Billy D. Williams, Duke Ellington, Roscoe Browne, James Earl Jones kinda class! Instead of calling ASU on the snub and the absolute Horse Ish that it is, the President instead used their own bull ish, to call again, for everyone to make a contribution to society not resting on our achievements but continuing to strive.
ASU has been so blessed! They may not know it, they may not even care but they have stood in the presence of greatness.
BE Mindful! BE Prayerful! BE Careful!
Thursday, May 14, 2009
Well, here it is Y'all! I re-edited it the interview and I hope that it does Miss Coleman justice.
Jaycee: Hey Y'all, welcome to another installment of the Kongo Square Chat. I am honored to finally answer this month's burning question. Who in the Hell is Wanda Coleman?
Audience: Yeah! Yeah! Who in the hell is she?
Jaycee: Wanda Coleman, The LA Blueswoman, is a spoken word Artist, a novelist, the unofficial Poet Laurette of Los Angeles, A Watts Writers Workshop Veteran, a daytime drama writer, a poet and the 1st Afrikan American Female Editor of the Black Adult Men's Magazine "Players". That's who Wanda Coleman is and so much more. So with all that I would like to get into the interview.
Hello Miss Coleman!
Wanda Coleman: And hello Jaycee, and hello to all of you.
Jaycee: Miss Coleman, let me start by asking you, what writer or writers turned you on and hooked you to the idea of writing?
Wanda Coleman: I was raised in the post-WWII America of the 1950s, a time in our history when literature by African-Americans was still largely considered “contraband” and confiscated when brought onto the school grounds in Southern California . I learned about Dunbar, Langston, and James Weldon Johnson from my parents, their friends and family, and the folks at the AME Church.
When I read those poems, I understood them immediately and their process, which I thought was magical. It was a magic I wanted to be able to perform. That perception got me hooked!
By the early 1970s it was Jeffers, Elliot, Plath, Neruda, Bukowski, Vallejo and anyone else I could scarf on—including Camus, Didion, Nathanael West and the French existentialists.
Jaycee: What about Poetry? Would you share a piece with our readers?
Wanda Coleman: I'd be glad to share.
American Sonnet (10)
Published in the book Hand Dance 1993by Wanda Coleman
our mothers wrung hell and hardtack from row
and boll. fenced others'
gardens with bones of lovers. embarking
from Africa in chains
reluctant pilgrims stolen by Jehovah's light
planted here the bitter
seed of blight and here eternal torches mark
the shame of Moloch's mansions
built in slavery's name. our hungered eyes
do see/refuse the dark
illuminate the blood-soaked steps of each
historic gain. a yearning
yearning to avenge the raping of the womb
from which we spring
Wanda Coleman: Other than the above, the first poems I read by African-American authors were found in old magazines, like The Crisis. At age 13, Mrs. Clark, one of my English teachers, took me to my first poetry reading. She belonged to Our Authors Study Club. The dark-skinned gentleman poet was a fantastic reader, with a wonderfully Robeson-esque voice similar to my father’s. He read from his recently published book of poems and I watched the audience response carefully—how much everyone enjoyed his “tongue of men and angels.”
Jaycee: Some poets have been able to enjoy great exposure through vehicles such as blogs and television shows such as the Lyric Cafe and Def Poetry Jam where do you think the art will go next?
Wanda Coleman: The art you find on television and in movies is largely the art of performance, and very little fine poetry (although they certainly go well together, and factor in music). Performance will always take care of itself, from the street to the tower. Poetry—the writing alone, especially when taken seriously—resides largely in today’s colleges and universities. It has become institutionalized out of necessity, to survive. Poetry does seem to be thriving on the blogs and online zines that have taken over the underground small press world that began when Ed Sanders started “Fuck You” magazine in 1962.
Jaycee: Do you have a style or a particular form that you specialize in? Or do you just focus more on subject matter?
Note: A Choice of Weapons recieved a PDF file of the Premier Players issue featuring an interview with Dr. Huey P. Newton, a short story by Odie Hawkins, articles by Earl Ofari Hutchinson and great photos but sadly I could not translate the file to this medium. (sad face)
JW: What writers were you able to publish?
Wanda Coleman: Frankly, other than Odie Hawkins, Michelle Kidd and Earl Ofari Hutchinson, I don’t recall all their names. Anyone was allowed to play, as long as they could tap into the Black vibe. Therefore, not all of my writers, photographers or illustrators and cartoonists were African-American. I worked with people—many of African-American origin or African origin, from all over the western world including Italians, the British and French. At that time dominant culture publications did not want black material—and that included photo sets of nude Black women. You have no idea how much hatred there is out there for the black female. In fact, many whites do not even consider us human. I was told many times that THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A BEAUTIFUL BLACK WOMAN! That was difficult to cope with when I encountered it—and I surely did.
Jaycee: Both Odie Hawkins and Earl Ofari Hutchinson went on to have long careers that endure to the present. WOW! What writers have you met during the Watts Writers Workshop period that we should know but don't and who should we know that we never will?
Wanda Coleman: Hmmm. I’m sorry. I could have answered your question in a snap a couple of decades ago, but it’s dim in memory now. The only person I’m still in touch with from that period is novelist Odie Hawkins. Two years ago, in order to answer your question intelligently, I would’ve gotten on the horn to ex-New Yorker Marilene Murphy, who did Telepoetics, and would’ve asked her to run the names past me. She was fascinated by WWW. But she’s passed on. Oh—Quincy Troupe was around during that time, and one of my old school mates—Alvin Saxon aka Ojinki (I hope I spelled that correctly). And there was a writer named Cleveland (I mention him in a poem), and Emory Evans—who is now a professor at one of the southern universities somewhere. Native American writer Simon Ortiz was hanging around Watts at that time.
Jaycee: What about the Panthers and the Freedom Movements, did that affect your writing? How so? If not then, then at what time did you notice that it was beginning to?
Wanda Coleman: My first marriage in 1964 was to a white Freedom Rider, and itinerant folk singer and Baptist minister, who used to baby-sit the children of Coretta and Martin Luther King, Jr. Jerry Coleman had come to L.A. with Vernon Jordon, Stokely Carmichael and Jesse Jackson to trouble shoot and raise funds for SNCC.
They where all young men in their early 20s at that time.
Remember, the civil rights movement did not come this far west; however, it had supporters such as “the friends of SNCC”—but they were underground organizations and people were extremely hush-hush about their activities. Being terribly brash, I was fairly vocal about wanting to “write for the revolution,” but it didn’t take long for me to see that that was a delusion. (I was in Frank Greenwood’s Black Playwrights workshop at the time, at age 18.)
Wanda Coleman: After that, I decided to put my energies into pursuing my original dream of being a creative writer.
Jaycee: How about the fact that Bud Schulberg was considered to be Red? Didn't that scare you?
Wanda Coleman: Hahaha. I didn’t know about it, and if I had, I wouldn’t have been scared. You’re talking to the kid who used to sit up in Dorothy Healy’s living room and argue the problems of race and politics. She was an activist in the communist party and headed the L.A. branch at one time. What bothered me about Bud Schulberg was his bloody ego and his Moses complex.
Jaycee: What other Watts/LA Women writers were writing at that time and since then what LA female writers would you say are from the same school of thought?Wanda Coleman: As for my ego, I like to think that I’m unique. Circa 1967-69, when a militant group of young Black Writers organized the Black Writers Committee in order to fight the discriminatory practices of the Writers Guild west, I was among them. There was only one other woman in the group and I’ve long
Forgotten her name. We were sold out by our leadership and made members of the Guild through what was then called The Open Door Program.
I went through it as the 8th minority member of the guild. In order to make sure we minorities knew how to write, there were several workshops we were invited to attend. In one of those workshops, I met a fledgling writer named Octavia Butler. We would kind-of-be friends for a few years—then go our separate ways.
The Late Mrs. Bebe Moore-Campbell
Jaycee: Some Afrikan Women Writers have made a good living writing from place of ANGER! Specifically, Anger at the Black Man, is that a fair assessment? I would say that it's dressed like its Women’s empowerment but its not real empowerment at all just Men Bashing. Would that be a fair statement? "Loaded Question!" I know but let's have some fun.
Wanda Coleman: Well, I’ve certainly been accused of that. But usually, the person doing the accusing hasn’t read very much of my work. Look—I used to work as a bartender. And I’ve heard “the bruthas” talk their women talk as if I were invisible. So I’ve gotten it all—in stereo. As far as I’m concerned, my primary anger is at the forces of poverty that have kept the majority of my people disenfranchised and has murdered many of those I love--men and women. I am a wellspring of anger behind racist bullshit and will forever be. I’ve been spending my anger on these forces—you know, the ones that create the Madoffs—for over 40 years, now. And I intend to go out kicking and screaming about the Hitlers who have perpetrated this economic holocaust. Got it?
Jaycee: Is it wrong in your opinion for an artist to say hey I'm just an entertainer?
Wanda Coleman: No, not if that’s how a particular artist sees him- or herself. There’s nothing wrong with making money; how one makes it is nobody else’s business. Each artist or entertainer has to live with themselves according to their dreams and beliefs. In my case, I chose to walk away from the heavy duty money. I thought it was the right decision at the time, and I still think it was the right decision. But choosing poverty over wealth in this society, at times, feels like insanity—and I have had my share of second thoughts. Walking the straight American-style, if not the narrow, is a bitch and a half.
Jaycee: What's your opinion on formula writers? You know those writers who write novels using a cookie cutter formula? (Please use your own examples)
Jaycee: Would you say it was lazy writing to use a formula? Is that fair?
Wanda Coleman: I wouldn’t say it, because for excellent writers it is a challenge to renew the formula and make it interesting. The best “hack” writers do that. So, no, it isn’t fair to call their writing lazy unless it actually is—and there are plenty of criteria to determine that. Plus, sometimes it’s hard work even to be mediocre.
Jaycee: What about the so called ghettoizing of novels? Do you think a publisher has the right to say I’m gonna market and promote your novel like a street fiction love story, for instance?
Wanda Coleman: Do you mean ghetto-ization? Like the popularity of writers like Zane? Kicked off by Donald Goines and Iceberg Slim? Those kind of urban street novels that seem to get every chump’s blood racing? (Hahaha.)
You know, I managed to live to see the day America would elect a Black man (of any origin) President. But I do not think I will live to see the day when a Charles Burnett (Killer of Sheep) will make more money than a Tyler Perry (Medea’s Family Reunion).
Jaycee: Is it any different from what Pigeon, Sig let and Holloway House have done in the past?
Wanda Coleman: Holloway House was a glorified racket or exploitation house. Any editor or writer—regardless of who they were—who came through their doors was ripped off, used and discarded. Bently Morris (if that’s his real name), and his shills, had been running game for 20 years before I showed up with the idea for Players. For example, Iceberg Slim only made a flat fee of $750 on his ground-breaking novel Pimp. It made his publisher-pimps at Holloway over 6 million dollars. Compared to the original Holloway House, Pigeon and Sig are angels, and at least their writers can afford new wardrobes, the snazziest shorts (rides), and an entourage.
Jaycee: What's your favorite piece or novel? Which one is your favorite and maybe it didn't sell as well? Which one is your least favorite but it sold better than you ever thought? Is there a such thing?
Wanda Coleman: No such thing. My favorite books, of 19, are Heavy Daughter Blues: Poems & Stories, The Riot Inside Me: More Trials and Tremors, and my new collection of short stories Jazz and Twelve O’clock Tales (my favorite tales are “Butterfly Meat” and “Jazz at Twelve”).
That’s as close as I can come to picking favorites, because what I like of my own work changes over time and circumstances. I enjoy rereading sections of my tragic-comic novel Mambo Hips and Make Believe. I think some of my stories will absolutely stand the tests of time—like “Back City Transit by Day” which is from Jazz and Twelve and currently appears in Ishmael Reed’s POW WOW anthology, or “Eyes and Teeth” (from A War of Eyes and Other Stories). I’m a literary writer outside the mainstream. I want the reader to be “affected by” my writing, not necessarily “like” my writing in the usual fashion. My books sell better in academe and among serious readers. Sometimes feeling uncomfortable is the proper response to my work.
Jaycee: Miss Coleman, once again, I am honored to have been able to share some time with you. A Choice of Weapons and our readers thank you as well.
Wanda Coleman: And Thank You for allowing me to share.
Jaycee: Well, folks I hope that you enjoyed this installment of the Kongo Square Chat. Be sure to peep all the previous installments as well.
BE Prayerful! BE Mindful!BE Careful!
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
I live in Long Beach and I enjoy the city alot. It ain't a superior, steller city like Compton (Hub City) but being fair, what city is?
I stopped to grab a couple of items at the local market near my home, the area has been gentrified recently and the market is less than five years old but it's already run down. Now, I like Albertson's. I have been an East Arts Village resident for over 15 years, that's Downtown to anyone who lived there before 1995, so I ain't trying to bash the local chain per se, but I hate the fact that both Albertson's have super long lines, only a few checkers, and the deli counter food is not the fresh. There are three major grocery chains in Los Angeles County Albertsons/Kroger, Ralphs and Safeway/Vons. Now, in the stores nearest to me, all three smell bad, the produce and can goods are not steller and there are usually no more than, three to four checkers serving upwards of 10 people per lines. So it's always crowded! The Deli counter is terrible! Pre-cooked food is heated under hot lamps, new foods piled on top of the old food.
Now, I've been to the stores in middle class Long Beach and they have a full staff of checkers, the store is clean, the deli counter food is fresh and hot and the people are friendly. This has been my experience with Ralphs, Vons and Albertson's in those areas which lead me to conclude that it's because the area is more affluent that those stores have not descended into the crappy conditions of the East side Long Beach Stores and The Downtown area stores.
What do y'all think?
The picture of Vons is from the Naples area of Long Beach. It's like a lil gourmet version of the regular Vons. Again, specialty items, hot, fresh foods, small lines with lots of checkers and it's clean and well lit.
I don't know if this will work but I want to start a campaign against the crappy treatment that working class people get from these chain stores! Yes! I say working class (Poor Folks) cause you can visibility see and smell the difference. The big 3 charge high prices for everyone but the quality of service and goods is where the real imbalance lies.
BE Prayerful! BE Mindful! BE Careful!
Friday, May 8, 2009
Note: He's got a Nintendo 64 Wrestling game where he's a character! He's lived the fast, high life but now he's older and worse he's alone. He's trying to make time with a Gentleman's Entertainment Professional (Stripper) played by A Different World's Oscar winning Marissa Tomei who plays "Cassidy" a single Mom with a great body but fighting time and gravity.
Seeing Marrissa Tomei strip was a lil disturbing but hell, I lived through Showgirls and Spike Lee's musical "School Daze" not to mention Bruce Willis singing in Hudson Hawk, and Patrick Swaze, Wesley Snipes and Ving Rhames in drag. So hell, I can survive anything! (Smile) See both films!
BE Careful! BE Mindful! BE Prayerful!
I thought I could control it! Addicts say that all the time. Well, I poured a Thomas Keppner Vanilla Creme soda over some ice. The amber liquid looked frosty against the octagon shaped ice cubes. The perspiration slowly coming down the glass and my face.
Ummm! This was gonna taste goooood! Sooooo goood! Come to me Baby, you know you got what I neeeeeeeed! (Addict talk)
Then, I took a sip. Blllllllllach! I felt Sick! SICK! Soda never made me feel sick before. It had always been my friend. I know, I've gotta take my medicine I'll just wash it down with a little more. Blacccccccccccch!
The whole next day I felt like hell, and this is from a dude that once went on a bender and drank 2 seven and sevens, a Gin and Tonic, 2 plates of ATOMIC hot wings with 2 plates of calamari and top it off with some purple slurpee type liquid that you stirred Barcardi 151 into.
I didn't feel as bad when I did that as I felt when I drank the soda. I felt bad allll the next day.
I'm cured! No more Sodas! I'm Freeeeeeeee!
No more No soda challenges y'all just no more soda Dig?
BE Prayerful!BE Mindful! BE Careful!
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Naw, the sad part about that is that there are thousands of Black Men who had more intelligence, drive, ambition and vision that helm corporations, prisons and graveyards all too often. So Barack H. Obama is indeed one of us; Not some Super Universal Space Knukka or Some Supreme Super Knukka or THE ONE but one that has achieved. Is he special, yeah, Bam Bam is special but if you really, truly, honestly look. Yeah, he's special but not sooo special dig?
God Bless Bam, ooops! I mean President Bam Bam!
BE Prayerful! BE Mindful! BE Careful!
Friday, May 1, 2009
I think that Past President Bush Senior is a Huuuuuuge Tool for appointing Clarence Thomas to the bench in Thurgood Marshall's stead. How could you? I can see you appoint a so called conservative but I do not believe that that appointment was coincidence. No! That was a Biiiiiig Eff you to the Warren Court and to then, President Johnson.
I don't know bout y'all but I think that it would be the best ticket in town to see Thomas, Scalia, Roberts and Alito go up against some new legal minds that have yet to be introduced. How bout y'all?
Here's to Change!
BE Careful! BE Mindful! BE Prayerful!