Iowa: Pigs, Corn and Caucuses

There must be something special about Iowa for me to have bought a snow globe there. Outta visits to 45 different states, it’s the only state snow globe in my collection–which does not make it much of a collection I suppose. I worked on a memorable feature story that meant a couple of visits and interaction with some impressive people who were part of a child abuse SWAT team.

On my way out after my first trip to Iowa I remember writing postcards at the Drake Diner. Postcards that really annoyed my waitress because they all had photos of pigs or corn stalks. She schooled me that there was more to Iowa than that. Of course my snow globe features pigs and corn.

But my waitress was right. She gave me a good tip. I’m not trying to get a vote, but I do like Iowa and I will watching the caucuses closely tonight. If I happen to see an ear of corn or a snorting pig, well, that will just be a bonus.

iowaglobe

Remembering My [Sexual] Revolutionary Interview with Paul Kantner

The setting: Paul Kantner’s San Francisco crib which had a stunning view of the the Bay Bridge. I was there with a cameraman, the talented Scott Hall, to conduct an interview with the co-founder of Jefferson Airplane for a television news series about the 1960s. One of my questions included asking him about the sexual revolution.

Paul: It was wild.
Me: How wild?
Paul: Come upstairs and I will show you

Paul and Me: *Laughter*

Note: I did not go upstairs, but walked away from the interview thinking that Paul Kantner was brilliant and funny.

RIP

On Assignment: My favorite stories of 2015

DACA. Same Sex Marriage. Sandra Bland. Skid Row Karaoke. PrEP. The end of Rentboy.com
I have had the opportunity to report on quite a variety of news and feature stories in 2015 and it is hard to chose the most significant.
But you kind of have to at year’s end.

So here goes, in no particular order, the most memorable features.

The Psychological Impact of Being Undocumented

Skid Row Karaoke

PrEP

Same Sex Marriage

Happy Chickens

americangothicsmile800
http://www.dw.com/en/happy-chickens/av-18387150

For The Win: Saturday Night Bingo with Miss Rosie Film Wins Award

 

Delighted to hear that the trailer for my film, “Saturday Night Bingo with Miss Rosie,” won second place in the Individuality category of the My Hero International Film Festival.

 

Last year “A Father to Dye For” was a finalist in the festival, which is held in Santa Monica. I got to walk the red carpet with the star of the film. If you have not seen it yet, you can watch it here.

 

The film also came in second in the ALFA Short Film Competition 2014 and it made for a wonderful premiere.

 

“#Thugs”: From Ferguson to L.A.coming December 2015

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Photograph copyright Lena Nozizwe 2013

 

For more than a year I have been documenting post-Ferguson  protests in Los Angeles, including the shot above from a die-in at the Third Promenade in Santa Monica.

For my upcoming e-book “#Thugs”: From Ferguson to L.A 2014-2015,  I have compiled photographs and interviews with everyone from local leaders of Black Lives Matters to LAPD Chief Charlie Beck.

I use the word thug in the title because I see that word just about every time I review tweets or comments about police accountability protesters.  It seems the word “thugs” and other pejoratives end  many conversations about the demonstrators and police too. My hope is that by acknowledging those words we can all begin a much-needed conversation.

 

 

Coming December 6, 2015

“#Thugs”: From Ferguson to L.A 2014-2015.”

 

 

On Assignment: The Drought Means California Is Getting a Makeover

copyright Lena Nozizwe 2015

Photograph copyright Lena Nozizwe 2015

 

Virtually every day that I go for a walk in Southern California, I see sprinklers watering the cement and the streets. It makes you wonder how seriously my fellow Californians are taking the news of a historic drought.

Update: They seem to be taking it more seriously than ever.

My assignment for Deutsche Welle’s Living Planet gave me the opportunity to get some answers.

You’ll find my words and pictures and radio report here.

 

On Assignment: How Her Passion For Hello Kitty Turned into Her Career

My book, “Starring in Your Own Life,” is all about finding a role in life that makes you shine. The proprietor of a shop on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles has managed to turn her love of Hello Kitty into a career. How purrfect.

My story for AJPlus takes you inside her store and inside the Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty, exhibition that she helped curate.

Shine on.

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