IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: The previous ‘chapters to “The Spring Break That Never Should Have Happened” are here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3   The bail bondsman isn’t there when Margaret, the officer and I arrive at the jail. I heed my mother’s advice to take care of Margaret and plead with the officer not to ...

Who makes fun of Harriet Tubman? Russell Simmons. That’s who.   Yesterday evening, a curious hashtag began to appear on Twitter, #harriettubmansextape. It was a video spoof, billed as “an off-record account of how Harriet Tubman blackmailed her master into letting her run the Underground Railroad!”   No. I’m not making this up.  I couldn’t if I ...

Part 1  Part 2  My Mom calls me back as I’m following the police car with Margaret in it. The officer said the station was 10 minutes away and we’re driving straight down a two-lane road with no street lights. We should be there shortly. Mum’s update is that she managed to track down my ...

The Spring Break That Shouldn’t Have Happened, Part 1 is here I’d been thinking of what to do with the money I’d saved that week, since Lonnie’s boyfriend, his roommate and his friends picked up the tab for everything the whole time. The only money I’d spent was splitting the cost of gas with Lonnie on the ...

More than a decade ago, my father made an unusual decision. I’d asked to drive to Atlanta (10 hour drive) with my best friend for Spring Break my senior year of college. I usually skipped SB all together. The drinking age, obviously, was 21, and I was 20 when I graduated in college, so in ...

I have a writer idol, actually several, but one in particular has always stood out as the be all and end all of how I’ve wanted my skillls as a writer to be perceived. She’s got this unique and amazing way of stating things simply, but capturing the complexities of whatever she’s writing about. And ...

“Who is Rachel Jeantel?”   I was clueless about this name that suddenly took over my social media timelines on Wednesday. I would have known immediately, if I hadn’t stopped following the Trayvon Martin case. It’s been over a year since Trayvon died, and in that time I feel that the character of that 17-year-old ...

Last week, I got a call from a producer at Life + Times aka Jay-Z’s website. It was an invite to sit on a panel with two industry vets—Datwon Thomas and Shaheem Reid. (If you don’t know who they are, Google, especially if you’re an aspiring writer.) I would have said “yes!” no matter who was on ...

Last week, I was contacted on Twitter by a man who recently stumbled across an article I’d once written about street harassment, the bane of existence for every black woman walking, well, the street. My piece mused on the best way to engage the sorts of men who yell at women to “smile,” tell them ...

It all started– for me– when my father won a family trip to Senegal when I was around 10. I’d been out the country before, of course. But I was little so I didn’t need a passport. This time, I would.   So one day my mother picks me up from school and we go ...