writer, photographer, artist, actress, keynote speaker

Paying tribute to a friend
who knew you when . . .

Screen Shot 2015-11-27 at 9.36.41 AMSome things require you to take a moment. Learning that a friend had died meant doing just that: giving the news the time it deserved, the time it required, the time to remember and then say goodbye. A single column could never cover all the wonderful things about my friend, the things that made her become a person who helped others, who loved others, who made others laugh.  There aren’t enough words to describe what she meant
to her family and friends. But since words are what I do, and she and I both loved words, I offered some about my friend Rita Long Baker here.

That time you were reminded
to walk your life in faith and joy

I was awakened this morning by best alarm clock, my dog, Desi. When he’s ready to go, his whine sounds almost human. We bundled up and headed out into the snow, and today, he decided he wanted to trot. So we trotted. I was moving with my head down, my eyes on the ground and suddenly, my face and shoulders were filled with snow. I had walked right into a low hanging branch. It was a skinny one that did no harm, and suddenly, I found myself laughing out loud. Screen Shot 2015-11-22 at 8.53.10 AMI was a child again, and I’d just been hit by a very loose snowball. I was overwhelmed with memories of growing up in North Carolina . . . the foot races, the snowball fights, the snow cream my grandmother used to make with a little vanilla extract and milk. I was still laughing when we arrived home. We opened the door to Joel Osteen on the  television. He was giving advice to his congregation, which is the size of the crowd at a basketball game or a prize fight. But suddenly, I realized he was talking to me, reminding me that I should not always ask God for things, but that I should thank Him for the things He already did. I should thank him for the joy. Screen Shot 2015-11-22 at 9.06.38 AM “If you remember the victories,” Osteen said, “the times God healed you, the times He promoted you, the times He stopped the accident, the times He turned the problem around – when you’re remembering the right things, you’re going to move forward in faith. You’ll see more of God’s favor.”

If one more person says slavery had no lasting impact, I’ll scream

The Pittsburgh Black Media Federation Monday denounced as “a blight on journalism” a Sunday column by Jack Kelly in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that included the line, “Slavery was horrible, but no black American living today has suffered from it. Most are better off than if their ancestors had remained in Africa.”

Moses Malone: Time to study life expectancy of former NBAers?

We’ve spent a lot of time analyzing the injuries men suffer on the NFL gridiron, injuries that shouldn’t surprise us considering that men weighing hundreds of pounds are running into each other at full force over and over for months every year, sometimes cracking bones, sometimes cracking heads, always eliciting cheers or groans.

Let’s celebrate Serena Williams’ super, fantastic, winning year!

Screen Shot 2015-09-13 at 9.50.22 AM

What is this great sadness about Serena Williams’ 2015 in tennis?

There is nothing to be sad about. Serena had a fantastic year!

But what did happen in 2015 is that Serena became a victim of expectations. She was so good that we created a new goal for her to reach, a penultimate standard that wasn’t necessary. It wasn’t enough for her to be the best in the world. We wanted a calendar- year slam.