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.
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.
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 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.
I was staggered to hear that today is the 20th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing.
I remember it so vividly, well most of it. Not sure if I flew in from Washington on the night of the bombing or the night after.
As I drove into town I was caught in the wake of the entourage of President Clinton so I just stopped at a welcoming restaurant. That I do remember. The waiter was surprised I had come so far and he wondered, “Does the rest of the world care about us?” I assured him they did.
Once at the hotel I shared an elevator ride with CNN’s (not the playwright) Bernard Shaw. He introduced himself. Of course I said, “I know who you are.” He said, “Well I don’t ever assume.” He was a serious newsman to be sure.
When I got to my room there was a bank of phones left behind. from the president’s entourage, I assumed. Housekeeping can’t do everything. But they did move me to a new room. Downstairs, at media central, a local had gone to the trouble to write a list of recommended restaurants. I thought it was really sweet. I did hear a well-known newsman make fun of it. I didn’t get it.
My assignment was to do a story about the victims. I begged off and requested to do a story about the investigation and ended up interviewing the Governor Frank Keating and the trooper who stopped Timothy McVeigh. Why my request to change stories? Well, I didn’t want to cry. Non-stop.
On the way home all I could think about was home.
But I did go back the next year. I am pictured above with the crew and a rescue dog.
This past weekend the story about Walter Scott in the Post Courier read:
An officer’s gunfire disrupted a hazy Saturday morning and left a man dead on a North Charleston street.
Police in a matter of hours declared the occurrence at the corner of Remount and Craig roads a traffic stop gone wrong, alleging the dead man fought with an officer over his Taser before deadly force was employed.
The headline three days later was:
North Charleston officer faces murder charge after video shows him shooting man in back
What a difference a video makes. Even so, some privacy activists want to push the pause button when it comes to putting cameras on police officers.
Lorelei Plotczyk, founder of the grassroots organization Truth or Drought says “The idea that someone could be fined for watering their lawn on the wrong day, but could then go inside and serve their family a pound of beef at dinner which uses enough water for a year of showers by some estimates is completely and totally insane.”
A 2012 study by the Pacific Institute on California’s water footprint found meat and dairy production accounts for almost half of the water use in the state. They report that household use accounts for only four percent. Find more of my radio reporting here.
More than once my mother has referenced tending to chickens when she was a young girl growing up in Malawi, Africa. I have been lucky enough to go back to Africa to see the coops there myself, and we are talking about truly free range chickens. In my imagination that was the way all chickens were raised.
But then I started looking into the new California law that mandates bigger quarters for all the chickens that lay the eggs that are sold in California.
That is what prompted my visit to the backyard chicken coop of Roe and Trish Sie. It is where I discovered just how little I knew about the chicken and the egg.
Learn more in my report for Deutsche Welle.
Listen to more of my stories on my Reporting page.