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February 5 - 11, 2014




o doubt, many of you have been out and about in Jackson some Saturday afternoon and witnessed one of the strangest pieces of mobile art on four wheels: a Toyota Camry covered with a variety of stickers. That would be none other than “Stella.” Stella has a rich and interesting history that includes country music royalty, rebellion and generally bringing happiness to anyone who sees her, including current owner Justin Watson. Watson, 24, attended Florence High School and Hinds Community College. He recently started working for Railroads Controls Limited, a company that sets up signals and ground wires at railroad crossings. Stella’s impact on the Jackson area is obvious to Watson. “People see the car and put a sticker on her. With the summer heat here, (the stickers) eventually melt, and there’s no way to remove them,” he says. He knew that Stella was a fixture on Jackson’s landscape, so when the opportunity came for him to purchase the car, he did—for a whopping $300. But Stella’s own history is priceless. Her beginnings were auspicious enough. She began as a pristine, white 1998 Toyota Camry. Country music stars Tim McGraw and Faith Hill purchased the car here in Jackson for Hill’s nephew and niece, Jeff and Katie Perry. Jeff drove the car first. As an act of teenage rebellion, he began to adorn the vehicle with various stickers. In addition to those stickers,


he encouraged friends and strangers to place stickers on the car, which he named Stella. Jeff’s father, Wesley, who is a schoolteacher, initially wasn’t thrilled with the new additions to the car. Of course, by this time, a tradition had begun, and it was too late to stop people from randomly placing stickers on the car’s body. When Jeff left home for college at Ole Miss, he left Stella behind. Wesley Perry, who had not approved of Stella’s embellishments at first, was now driving her around town, and Jeff’s little sister Katie even piloted the now-famous car. More stickers kept showing up. Jeff married his high school sweetheart Melissa in 2011. He sold Stella to Justin, who continues the tradition of adding stickers to Stella’s body. “I have no idea how many stickers are on Stella. It would take all day to count, but I’m willing to bet there at least 300 to 400,” Watson says. “I put some Justin Bieber duct tape on her that I got for Christmas, which is cool. My favorite sticker has got to be my ‘Wonder Years’ sticker because it’s so rare.” Is anything off limits for Stella? “I think she’s down for anything. She’s even got Ron Paul and Barack Obama stickers,” Watson says. And what does Stella’s original buyer think of the upgrades? “I’m not sure, but I know Faith Hill has (ridden) in it! As far as I know, she likes it,” Watson says with a laugh. “I don’t know about Tim, though.” Visit to see more photos of Stella the Sticker Car. —Tommy Burton

Cover illustration by Jesse Flowers

8 Art Lofts on Hold

The Capitol Art Lofts, meant for empty buildings across from the historic King Edward Hotel, are on pause while developers figure out funding.

32 Poll Loser

The Netflix documentary “Mitt” takes the viewer inside the world of Mitt Romney during his run for presidency from 2006-2012.

34 Not Just Comedy

“(Donald Glover, aka Childish Gambino) consistently inserts sound clips of everything from white noise to phone calls and sirens to add a flourish to his beats. While these elements are often low in the mix (certainly less noticeable than Glover’s rapping), it’s a clutter that isn’t often heard in rap music. Some rap songs scarcely feature a single note, let alone a fully written composition of violin, harp and a soloing electric guitar, as is the case in the explosive ending of Childish Gambino’s ‘The Worst Guys.’” —Micah Smith, “‘Because the Internet’ Boasts Quality and Quantity”

4 ............................. EDITOR’S NOTE 6 ................................................ YOU 8 ............................................ TALKS 14 ................................ EDITORIAL 15 .................................... OPINION 16 ............................ COVER STORY 26 ......................................... FOOD 29 .............................. DIVERSIONS 30 .......................................... ARTS 31 ....................................... 8 DAYS 32 .......................................... FILM 32 ...................................... EVENTS 34 ....................................... MUSIC 36 ....................... MUSIC LISTINGS 37 ..................................... SPORTS 39 .................................... PUZZLES 41 ....................................... ASTRO


FEBRUARY 5 - 11, 2014 | VOL. 12 NO. 22



by Amber Helsel, Editorial Assistant

Absence and Fondness


f course you’ve heard the old saying, “absence makes the heart grow fonder.” That’s what people kept telling me when I’d get anxious about my boyfriend, Jon, leaving to go to school at Mississippi University for Women (in case you don’t know, it’s co-ed now). I hated how easy it was for someone to roll that phrase off his or her tongue, as if it actually helped me feel better about the situation. Four and a half years ago, we began a long-distance relationship, just two weeks before I went off to my first year at Ole Miss. The timing was terrible, to say the least. We saw each other as much as possible, but days together were limited when he came to see me. Since my dorm had a 2 a.m. curfew, and he hated driving late at night, we had to settle with a few hours on a Saturday, and he’d leave well before midnight—hardly enough time together for a budding relationship, and since I didn’t have a job, coming home wasn’t always easy. We talked all the time and tried to spend as much time together as possible, but something was off about our relationship, and I ended up breaking up with him the day after his birthday in 2010. Save the shocked looks for later—I know how bad my timing was, but at that point, it seemed like the only option. Ultimately, we got back together after we both moved to Oxford, Miss., for school, but those hard few months were hard to get out of my head. It took a long time, but eventually, I was able to let myself relax and enjoy my relationship. Jon going to culinary school at MUW threw me for a loop. I was a college graduate, ready to start life. He was a college dropout, ready to finish his education.

Truthfully, I spent most of the time before he left hoping that maybe he wouldn’t get in. It’s not that I didn’t want him to go. I was proud of him for finding something he loved to do and wanted to learn more about. But I didn’t want to be left behind. I spent a lot of time in the months

I’ve learned the truth in the phrase about absence making the heart grow fonder. before he left feeling angry and sad and that maybe this would be the end of us. It wasn’t, though. He’s been gone a year, and while sometimes I’m still angry or just miss him a lot, I’ve learned the truth in the phrase about absence making the heart grow fonder. We love each other more now than we ever did, and we’ve learned ways to keep our longdistance relationship alive and thriving. For example, whenever we can visit each other’s homes, we normally end up

cooking or baking something. Before I met Jon, cooking was the last thing on my mind. He’s always had a great love for it, but I was raised on cereal and boxed foods. When my weight started going downhill (or uphill, depending on the way you look at it), he helped me learn to like cooking. Sometimes we cook instead of going out to eat because it’s cheaper and way more fun. And we make a really good baking team. Even though we’re in a long-distance relationship, it’s still easy to get into dating ruts, and even easier after dating for four and half years (with a four-month hiatus in 2010). Our worst tendency is to go on the same date over and over again. So while our favorite activity to do together is still eating, we try to mix it up a little bit by going to some kind of festival or a museum. Our favorite place to go is the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science (2148 Riverside Drive, 601-354-7303). Our first trip to that museum helped us discover our mutual love for learning, history, animals and the natural world. I also love writing letters. The act seems old and outdated with the advent of cell phones and other technology, but nothing is more personal, to me, than seeing my own handwriting on a sheet of paper. Letters are more personal than text messages or email, sometimes even talking on the phone. I don’t send Jon letters as often as I should—and he always forgets to send me one—but it’s romantic to me. I can tell him about my day or how my life has been or how much I miss him. Occasionally, I’ll do something like draw him a picture. On his refrigerator, he still has a picture I colored for him of a jack-o’-lantern. In a long-distance relationship, it’s

important to see each other as often as possible, even if we’re not physically seeing each other. We try to video chat or FaceTime a lot, though we should try more. It’s not the same as seeing him in person, but actually seeing him is more comforting to me sometimes than just hearing his voice. I find that, even if you spend a hefty amount of time with someone, it’s easy to forget faces. My biggest obstacle, though, is learning to appreciate whatever time we have together. Jon is an easygoing person. He doesn’t let something such as the imminence of one of us going to home deter him from enjoying whatever time we spend together. I always remind myself that I need to take a page from his book and enjoy what we’re doing instead of obsess over the gap of time before we see each other next. But the hardest lesson for me to learn was being OK with the distance. After we got back together, we weren’t apart for longer than a week for at least two years. I got used to seeing him every day, having him around whenever I wanted. When he left, I had to re-adjust to him being gone. In the beginning, I spent a lot of time alone, but I’ve learned that being around people, whether it’s coworkers, friends or family, and getting involved in different activities help the time go by. What I’ve learned, though, is that sometimes you just have to be okay with being by yourself. If you’re looking for Valentine’s Day gift ideas in a long-distance relationship, see page 19. Amber Helsel is the editorial assistant of the Jackson Free Press and BOOM Jackson magazine. She is always looking for Jacksonians (see page 3) or Persons of the Day to feature ( Email her ideas to amber@

February 5 - 11, 2014



Jesse Flowers

Tommy Burton

R.L. Nave

Ronni Mott

Casey Purvis

Ingrid Cruz

Briana Robinson

Gina Haug

Graphic design intern Jesse is a Delta State University grad with degrees in graphic design and painting. In his free time, he paints, travels and attends electronic music festivals. He designed the cover and the art for the cover package.

Music Listings Editor Tommy Burton is keeping the dream alive one record at a time. He can usually be seen with a pair of headphones on. He wrote the Jacksonian.

R.L. Nave, native Missourian and news editor, roots for St. Louis (and the Mizzou Tigers)—and for Jackson. Send him news tips at rlnave@ or call him at 601-362-6121 x12. He wrote for the talk section.

Freelance journalist Ronni Mott has been a Mississippian since 1997. She’s an award-winning writer and a yoga teacher, just stumbling and fumbling toward bliss like everyone else. She wrote for the cover package and the talk section.

Casey Purvis is a proud Fondrenite and a freelance writer. She loves cooking, eating, planting things, and practicing yoga. She is a consignmentstore junkie who loves decorating. She wrote for the cover package.

Freelance writer Ingrid Cruz was born in El Salvador, raised in California and moved to Mississippi in 2010. She is temporarily in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She wrote for the cover package.

Music Editor Briana Robinson wants to become an expert on all things music. Her other passions include dance and photography. Send her the music scoop at briana@ She wrote a music feature.

Account Manager Gina Haug is a self-professed information collector who has a love for all things fun. She is a huge Ole Miss and Saints fan, and her birthday is her favorite holiday.



[YOU & JFP] Name: Joey Larson Age: 24 Occupation: Cleaning and Safety Ambassador Lives: Clinton, Miss., for 16 years Favorite part of Jackson: The Coffee Roastery Favorite movie: “Safe House� or The “13th Warrior� Favorite quote: “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in Me.� —John 14:1 Secret to Life: “Living for God�

Write us: Tweet us: @JxnFreePress Facebook: Jackson Free Press

READER CHATTER Continuing Conversation on “JSU: Domed Stadium is Not Dead,�

SpaceMountain80 Part of the reason that it won’t happen, besides the cost of the stadium and the need for state money to make it happen, is that some people in the city want a standalone arena for concerts and events. They don’t want to give control to JSU and have to go through JSU to book concerts and events. ... I think the other thing that comes into play here are taxes. I know that colleges and universities are tax-exempt from a federal standpoint. Are they exempt from city property taxes as well? I would guess so. That would be another reason itself why the city would want a standalone arena—it would bring more taxes into the city than having a multipurpose stadium on university property.

tomhead1978 We need to remember that it was only a few years ago that the lawmakers who run the current legislature wanted to abolish all but one of the state’s public HBCUs. They’re still upset over the Ayers judgment, and are unlikely to put any more funds into JSU than absolutely necessary. January 2016 will, I hope, bring about some changes in the current legislative committee structure that will make economic development proposals like this possible again. bubbat Jackson State doesn’t need a domed stadium. None of the colleges in Mississippi need a domed stadium. If JSU wants a new stadium, let them and their alumni raise the money for it, just like the rest of the major colleges in Mississippi have done. justjess @Tomhead1978 You are right on point. Far too many legislators remain P’Oed about the Ayers case and until they are unseated and replaced with forward and positive thinkers, we will be at a stand still as it relates to progress. @Bubbat, why do you throw out all of this crazy stuff? You know that the stadiums at Ole Miss, Mississippi State or USM were not built from alumni money alone. These stadiums were financed through the

legislature. So, please stop asking JSU to do what others have not done. Get over it! bubbat Jess—What’s crazy about the truth? Vaught Hemingway Stadium was built in 1915 with a federal grant. USM’s “The Rock� was built in 1932 (known as Faulkner Field then) and was financed by local businessman L.E. Faulkner and used unemployed labor during the Depression. Can’t find any info on Hardy Field, the original MSU football field that was built before 1914, or Scott Field, the stadium that replaced, but I highly doubt the state paid for it either. The state might have financed a little of the expansions ... but no, they did not finance the original stadiums. But JSU isn’t talking about expansion or even repairs to a stadium, they talking about a dome to seat 50K that they don’t need at all. They already have a stadium that will seat 60K in Veterans Stadium. If they want their own stadium, let JSU or the alumni or a supporter fund it just like the major colleges did. Editor’s note: The above reflects commenters’ personal research and has not been factchecked. We welcome any documentation readers may have on this story. The debate continues in earnest online. Read the story and add your comments at


Knowledge06 Yes, the domed stadium IS dead. It just hasn’t been pronounced yet. This is a pointless conversation. ... And this is from a realistic JSU alum. There is no fiscal pathway to passage for the bill, nor can the stadium size be justified. We averaged a little over 17,000 per game this past 2013 season, and that’s before we hired 00 Soul as the new head coach. The people that want this stadium don’t buy season tickets. They pay to tailgate, buy T-shirts, hats and jackets, but they don’t go into the game. ...

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Wednesday, Jan. 29 Director of National Intelligence James Clapper announces that North Korea has expanded the size of its uranium enrichment facility and restarted a plutonium reactor that was shut down in 2007. ‌ The Federal Reserve reduces its stimulus for the U.S. economy by paring its monthly bond purchases from $85 billion to $75 billion.

Friday, Jan. 31 CEOs from top companies deliver commitments to President Obama to help put the long-term unemployed back to work. ‌ The long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline clears a major hurdle as the State Department raises no major environmental objections to the controversial pipeline from Canada through the heart of the U.S. Saturday, Feb. 1 Punter Ray Guy, defensive end Michael Strahan, receiver Andre Reed, defensive back Aeneas Williams, defensive end Claude Humphrey, linebacker Derrick Brooks and offensive tackle Walter Jones are inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Sunday, Feb. 2 Actor Philip Seymour Hoffman is found dead in his Greenwich Village apartment from an apparent overdose. ‌ The Seattle Seahawks crush the Denver Broncos 43-8 in Super Bowl XLVIII.

February 5 - 11, 2014

Monday, Feb. 3 Al-Qaida’s central leadership breaks off ties with one of the most powerful militant groups in Syria, known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.


Tuesday, Feb. 4 A federal judge hears arguments on whether Virginia’s ban on gay marriage should be struck down. ‌ Microsoft founder Bill Gates steps down as CEO for a new role as technology adviser. Microsoft names Satya Nadella the new CEO.



Art Lofts Hit Funding Roadbock by R.L. Nave


lans for a residential development in HRI Properties Inc., who said the company Governor’s Mansion and on the same street, “ruins� across from the King Edward would also reshape the size and scope of the people who have spoken with the governor Hotel are going back to the draw- project, which could mean building some- told the Jackson Free Press. ing board as backers search for new thing smaller—or larger—than envisioned. Leland Speed, chairman of the board of methods of financing. The Internal Revenue Service allows directors for Jackson-based EastGroup PropThe Capitol Art Lofts were announced state housing agencies such as MHC to award erties Inc. and former director the Mississippi last spring and called for Development Authority, said 31 moderately priced loft he talked to Bryant and beapartments that would inlieves the governor’s concerns clude fitness and business have been allayed. centers as well as space for Speed said the storeart galleries and studios. fronts detract from their BlackWhite Developmore aesthetically pleasing ment, a Jackson firm, deneighbors, the King Edward signed the concept along and Standard Life buildings. with New Orleans-based Moreover, Speed says cleanHRI Properties Inc., which ing up the eyesore might also helped renovate the nearby breathe life into other stalled King Edward and Standard projects such as the Farish Life buildings. Street Entertainment District. Plans for the Capitol Art Lofts, on West Capitol, are on hold, but Conceived with the “That is the most imdevelopers hope it’s not for long. starving artist in mind, the portant project we’ve got go$20 million project was to ing on in downtown,� Speed be funded with low-income said of the lofts. housing credits from the Mississippi Home developers up to $750,000 in tax credits per BlackWhite is no longer involved with Corporation, or MHC, a quasi-state agency project based on a scoring system. Investors the development. Collen, of HRI, said the with legislative oversight that helps finance then purchase the credits to use toward their company is still committed to the neighboraffordable-housing projects. The project federal tax bill each year for a decade. hood; it just needs to find the “right recipe� could bring needed affordable housing to In April 2013, MHC allocated two to making the financing work. downtown Jackson, where many young years worth of tax credits all at once to pump Speed points out that other program creatives and professionals cannot afford the cash into developments planned for around such as federal new-market tax credits, hismany of the new upscale residential housing the state. At the time, critics complained that toric tax credits and MDA state grants might units built there in recent years. the move represented a favor for political pals also be available. Speed and Colleen each say But MHC rejected applications from of Gov. Phil Bryant, who does not oversee it’s unlikely that waiting another two years to HRI and more than two dozen other devel- MHC but does appoint six of members of apply for low income tax credits is an option. opers from around the state in late 2013, cit- the agency’s nine-member board of directors. “We’ve got to get with it. We can’t wait,� ing too few credits to hand out. Bryant, a Republican, also had misgiv- Speed said.� “That was a very big blow,� said Josh ings about having a low-income housing Comment at Email R.L. Collen, vice-president for development for development just footsteps away from the Nave at TRIP BURNS

Thursday, Jan. 30 House Republican leaders outline broad immigration principles, including legalization for the 11 million immigrants living here illegally,. ‌ Doctors in the U.K. unveil an experimental therapy for children with peanut allergies that allowed 80 percent of children treated to eat up to a handful of peanuts safely.





BCBS Change Sparks Concerns, Legislation by Ronni Mott

“The patients will have to walk away,� if they can’t afford to pay full price for their medications, he said, even if they have a valid BCBS plan that covers other prescriptions. “They would have to pay out-of-pocket.� The Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that in the United States, roughly half of mental-health patients have access to care. Mississippi actually does better than the U.S. average, meeting 70.5 percent of the states’ needs, Kaiser reports. Perry indicated, however, that restricting patients’ pharmacy benefits could push out-of-network mental-health providers to find positions in states with better options for patients. Perry said she found out about the BCBS prescription coverage change from a patient who called for a reference to an inWill a Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi policy network provider. change make prescription drugs unaffordable for people receiving mental-health services? Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney said his office is in communisaid the change is evidence that BCBS is not cation with BCBS, and the company agreed patient- and provider-friendly anymore. He not to enforce the new provision, yet. To his characterized the insurer as the “800-pound knowledge, no BCBS plan holders have had to gorilla� of health-insurance companies. State- pay out-of-pocket for medications prescribed wide, BCBS insured 81 percent of consum- by out-of-network providers. ers with private health insurance in 2011. “I would be very surprised,� if the provi“They think they can push around the sion was in force, he said, and added that his providers and the patients,� he said. office has not received any complaints about Dozier is concerned that the change the benefit change from health-care providwill force pharmacists to turn away patients ers. Overall, complaints about Blue Cross & with legitimate needs. Blue Shield to the insurance commission are

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low—“fewer than 10,� Chaney said. “Those we’ve looked into have been misunderstandings,� Chaney said, and those complaints were resolved. “We want to be certain that patients get what they need.� While Chaney and providers agree on that point, the Mississippi State Medical Association, similar to MIPA, argues that the change will be harmful to Mississippians. The organizations are pushing for legislation prohibiting BCBS and other insurance companies from denying prescription coverage from out-of-network providers. HB 546, sponsored by Rep. Gary Chism, R-Columbus, seeks to amend state law to invalidate the BCBS health-insurance policy provision that “denies coverage of medically necessary prescription drugs based solely on network distinctions of the licensed health care provider ordering or dispensing the prescription drug.� Blake Bell, MSMA’s director of governmental affairs, said his organization has reached out to other health-insurance companies in Mississippi and in other states to determine if other companies limit prescription coverage to their in-network doctors. Bell said that he has yet to hear of another insurance carrier in the country with a similar restriction. He added that HB 546, which passed out of Chism’s House Insurance Committee Jan. 30, resulted from his organization’s members expressing real concern for their patients. “We want people to get better,� Bell said. “We don’t want insurance coverage to be a barrier.� Comment Email Ronni Mott at

time pending a state insurance commission review. The change, however, appears in a November 2013 BCBS plan summary obtained by the Jackson Free Press. Robert Dozier, executive director of Mississippi Independent Pharmacy Association, a group that represents the interests of independent pharmacists across the state, FLICKR/CHARLES WILLIAMS


r. Elizabeth Perry, a Jackson psychiatrist, recently asked Beemon Drugs for a quote on Abilify, a drug she often prescribes to treat depression and bi-polar disease. The retail cost is between $700 and more than $1,000 (depending on strength), for 30 pills—a one-month supply. She and other health professionals are concerned about a new “benefit� that Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi has added to its plans this year to end prescription coverage for medications prescribed by outof-network doctors. Under that provision, Perry’s patients, and many others who use out-of-network doctors, will be forced to pay retail prices to fill their prescriptions, rather than the insured rates for drugs prescribed by in-network doctors. “The impact of this could be tremendous,� Perry said, leaving vulnerable patients with fewer choices for care, and potentially destabilizing patients who can’t find in-network providers or afford to continue their medications. Those patients will end up in emergency departments, she said, causing family and job disruptions. “It’s mind-boggling.� Meredith Virden, a spokeswoman for BCBS, plays down the fears, saying the provision was added to the its health-insurance plans in January in response to requirements of the federal Affordable Care Act. Virden said the change “encourages use of in-network doctors,� and allows BCBS to manage their customers’ drug use better. It could, for example, prevent situations where different doctors may unknowingly prescribe incompatible or dangerous drugs. She also said that BCBS is not enforcing the change at this



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harlotte Figi was born a normal, healthy child—a fraternal twin to sister, Chase. At around 3 months of age, after her nightly bath, Charlotte’s eyes “started flickering,� her father, Matt, told CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta for a documentary that aired Aug. 7, 2013. Physicians eventually diagnosed Charlotte with a rare, catastrophic form of epilepsy called Dravet Syndrome that often causes patients to die young. The Figis, who live in Colorado, tried a number of treatments, including acupuncture and special diets as well as powerful drugs like Valium and phenobarbital. The only relief has come from small doses of an oil extracted from cannabidiol, also known as CBD, one of the active ingredients in marijuana. Mississippi State Sen. Josh Harkins, R-Flowood, said a constituent whose 20month-old child also suffers from Dravet syndrome and saw the CNN program reached out to him for help. Because Mississippi state law does not yet differentiate between medical and recreational marijuana usage, Harkins agreed to attempt to change the law. Experts say that the main chemical components of marijuana are tetrahydrocannabinol, THC, and cannabidiol. THC is a psychoactive chemical that make marijuana users feel high. By contrast, cannabidiol has no psychoactive properties and curbs the brain’s excessive electrical and chemical activity, which results in seizures. Harkins’ Senate Bill 2745 revises the state’s list of Schedule I controlled substances to exclude low doses of cannabidiol. The measure, which has passed the Senate’s Drug Policy Committee and Judiciary B Committee, excludes from Schedule I list of substances “processed cannabis plant extract, oil or resin that contains more than fifteen percent (15 percent) of cannabidiol

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and no more than one-half of one percent (0.5 percent) of tetrahydrocannabinol if the preparation does not contain recognizable seed or leaf matter.� COURTESY JACKSON STATE UNIVERSITY


Can’t Knock the Hustle

Sen. Derrick Simmons, D-Greenville, questions why the state should create a separate crime strike force given that law enforcement agencies already seem adept at forming multijurisdictional task forces.

Despite a few muffled grumbles from lawmakers, SB 2745 passed unanimously and is headed to the Senate floor for debate. Harkins, who has two children, said he believes putting a child’s face on the legislation has headed off any opposition from lawmakers who might otherwise believe the cannabidiol bill to be a slippery slope toward marijuana legislation. “If my child were suffering like that, I would do what I could to help,� he told Jackson Free Press. Bryant’s Super Troopers One of the keystones of Gov. Phil Bryant’s legislative agenda passed a hurdle as Judiciary B Committee of the Mississippi State Senate approved a bill to create a system of statewide violent-crime strike forces. The House Judiciary B Committee passed its version of the strike-force bill, which committee Chairman Rep. Mark Baker, R-Brandon, sponsored on Jan. 29.

Their Senate counterparts followed on Thursday, but not without several lawmakers raising a few pointed questions. “Why is this even needed?� Sen. Derrick Simmons, D-Greenville, asked of SB 2774. Bryant has said the strike forces would assist local and state law enforcement officials by deploying to high-crime and gang areas. The plan involves spending $1.5 million per year for three teams, broken up into northern, central and southern districts, which would operate under the supervision of the state attorney general. Each district would also have a commander, appointed by Bryant and Attorney General Jim Hood, a Democrat. The teams would have 12 to 15 members each; no member could earn more than $15,000 in overtime pay per year, the legislation states. Sen. Brice Wiggins, R-Pascagoula, had a similar concern about adding another layer of law enforcement. Wiggins offered an amendment so that the strike force could also benefit from seizures., which was successful, and the bill passed by unanimous voice vote out of committee. ‘Are We Talking about Moonshine?’ The Mississippi Department of Revenue wants to pour beer down the drain. More to the point, DOR wants legal authority to dispose of light wine and beer that the agency seizes in dry counties from people selling booze without a license. Kathy Waterbury, a department spokeswoman, told the Senate Finance Committee that DOR has seized so much beer that it’s starting to pile up in their warehouses. If the bill becomes law, DOR would be able to sell the product at auction. Waterbury added that because the expiration dates on much of it has passed, most of the beer is unsalable. Some senators winced at the idea of all that wasted beer, and passed the bill on to the full Senate. Comment at

TALK | state


as Told by the Prophets of the Bible

by Ronni Mott

Saturdays at 1:30 p.m. February 1st - March 1st, 2014


Saturday, February 8th


en. Joey Fillingane, R-Sumrall, the same dustbin as Fillingane’s bill. Judges Domestic-Abuse Fund Fight knows his anti-abortion “heart- in Texas and Arizona have ruled laws similar Some legislation primarily affecting beatâ€? bill likely will not survive the to the one proposed in Gipson’s bill as un- women is taking on a less partisan tone. current session of the Mississippi constitutional. Last year, for instance, the Governor’s Legislature, but he introduced it Domestic Violence Task Force disanyway. covered that the state Department “I don’t know if (my) bill will of Health was ineffectively managing survive if there’s pending litigation,â€? funds allocated to the state’s shelFillingane told the Jackson Free Press ters. The task force’s initial findings last week. showed that MSDH did not distribFillingane’s “heartbeatâ€? bill ute some $600,000 in a two-year pewould revoke the licenses of docriod, and a subsequent report from tors who perform abortions after 12 the Joint Legislative Committee on weeks when they detect a fetal heartPerformance Evaluation and Expenbeat. Other states have passed simiditure Review upped that figure to lar laws; however, in North Carolina $1.6 million over four years. and North Dakota judges have ruled “They’re not focused on that such laws unconstitutional. Other fund,â€? said Sandy Middleton, chairCourts in several states have said that proposals to heartbeat laws are under appeal. woman of the governor’s task force limit abortion access are unconstitutional. That has When it comes to laws restrict- not deterried Mississippi lawmakers such as Sen. Joey and executive director of the Cening abortion and other reproductive Fillingane, R-Sumrall, to file several such bills this year. ter for Violence Prevention in Pearl, rights, Mississippi legislators seem about the state health department happy to let the legal process play out elseGipson’s Capitol office telephone went when the PEER report findings became where, Fillingane said—for the most part. unanswered last week. public. “They’re not focused on delivery of The state is still embroiled in a lawsuit over services to victims.â€? a 2012 law with the state’s single surviving GOP on Sex Ed, Drug Testing With considerable bipartisan support abortion clinic. Some Republicans (includLawmakers on both sides of the parti- (including that of Republican Gov. Phil ing Mississippi. Gov. Phil Bryant) have ad- san divide are pushing legislation about sex Bryant), the task force is advocating for an mitted that the law, which requires the clinic’s education. Democrats advocate for allowing independent Commission on Interpersonal doctors to have admitting privileges at a local medically accurate information on contra- Violence to oversee collection and disbursehospital, was specifically designed to end all ception, pregnancy and abortion into school ment of those funds, and to standardize care access to legal abortion in the state. That ad- curricula, while Republican-sponsored bills for victims of violence in the state’s shelters. It mission may play against the bill in court. seek to prohibit any such knowledge to infil- also seeks to strengthen privacy laws to proNo local hospital will grant admitting trate young minds, at least not in the Missis- tect and benefit victims. privileges to doctors at the Jackson Women’s sippi’s public schools. Democrats on board include Sen. DaHealth Organization. So far, JWHO has Republicans have also introduced laws vid Blount of Jackson and Reps. David Barsuccessfully delayed the state from imple- designed to punish pregnant women with ia, of Bay St. Louis, and Kimberly Campbell menting the 2012 law. The law is scheduled substance-abuse problems. of Jackson. Republican lawmakers Sen. Sean for a jury trial in March. Similar bills in Texas One bill advocates testing for drug use J. Tindell, of Gulfport, and Reps. Patricia and Wisconsin also face legal challenges. and charging pregnant women with child Willis and Carolyn Crawford, of DiamondDespite remote chances of their bills abuse if they are arrested for violating drug head and Pass Christian, respectively, also passing, the state’s Republican representa- laws. Another bill seeks to create the offense support establishing the commission. tives and senators continue to push for laws of chemical endangerment of a child or feBut formation of an independent comrestricting women’s reproductive rights, au- tus. Other legislation, primarily introduced mission is seeing some Republican resistance. tomatically refiling bills year after year on the by Democratic lawmakers, seeks to strength- Although he hasn’t publicly come out against chance they might get passed. en and clarify laws against interpersonal vio- the bipartisan bills, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves is A bill from Rep. Andy Gipson, R- lence, bullying and sex trafficking, all areas of reportedly holding the traditional RepubliBraxton, for example, which seeks to outlaw long-standing concern at the state attorney can position of limiting government involveabortions after 20 weeks, seems destined for general’s office. ment and expansion. Rep. Becky Currie, R-Brookhaven, has introduced legislation to keep the funds allocated for domestic-violence shelters under control of an existing department, finance and administration, and to 7KH:RUOG+HDOWK2UJDQL]DWLRQGHÂżQHVLQWHUSHUVRQDOYLROHQFHDVDQ\EHKDYLRUZLWKLQDUH cap how much money shelters can receive. ODWLRQVKLSWKDWFDXVHVSK\VLFDOSV\FKRORJLFDORUVH[XDOKDUPWRWKRVHLQWKHUHODWLRQVKLS ,WJHQHUDOO\GHVFULEHVYLROHQFHZKHUHWKHSHUSHWUDWRUDQGWKHYLFWLPDUHDFTXDLQWHG Middleton is a big supporter of the  $OWKRXJKWKHPDMRULW\RIWKHYLFWLPVRIVXFKYLROHQFHDUHZRPHQLQKHWHURVH[XDO independent commission. “I’m thrilled that UHODWLRQVKLSVPHQDQGWKRVHLQVDPHVH[UHODWLRQVKLSVDUHQRWLPPXQH we’re moving like gangbusters through the  ,QWHUSHUVRQDOYLROHQFHFDQLQFOXGH House,â€? Middleton said, though she sees a  5DSHDQGRWKHUVH[XDODVVDXOW thornier path for the bill in the Senate.  $VVDXOWRIDQLQWLPDWHSDUWQHU “In the Senate, things get complicated.  &KLOGDQGHOGHUDEXVHRUQHJOHFW We’re not sure where the leadership stands,â€?  6WDONLQJ she said, referring to Reeves, whose office did  +XPDQWUDIÂżFNLQJLQFOXGLQJVH[WUDIÂżFNLQJ not return calls for comment.



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Fondren After 5 Gets a Reboot by Ronni Mott and Dustin Cardon

growth from several business people lately. ing to Jackson,” added Synarus Green, the “We have international companies that city’s chief administrative officer. could go anywhere,” he said. “They want to stay in Jackson.” Councilwoman Margaret Barrett-Simon of Ward 7, where the building will be located, echoed the sentiments of her fellow council members. “This project was sought by other cities, and Jackson won,” she said. Duane O’Neill, president and CEO of the Greater Jackson Chamber Partnership, said the projFondren After 5 will re-launch soon, featuring about 27 ect falls under the state’s 2012 vendors along with six to eight musical performances. Health Care Industry Zone Act, which Gov. Phil Bryant and the state Legislature enacted to promote the business of health care “On behalf of the council, we’re sold,” in Mississippi. Jackson will see a number of Tillman said to Joe House, who represented such projects in the future, he said. Urology Healthcare Properties at the meeting. O’Neill expects the city to benefit fiWard 6 Councilman Tony Yarber said nancially in the long run, even with the that locating the new building in Jackson is short-term incentive in place. a smart move. “It shows that the heartbeat of “You can’t beat another business com- this metro area is this city,” he said.



hat do you a call a bunch of urologists gathered in the middle of Mississippi’s capital city? Open for business, thanks to an incentive program the Jackson City Council recently approved. On Feb. 3, council members engaged in a round of congratulatory verbal backslapping Monday night as they welcomed a new health-care facility to the city. The council unanimously approved a tax incentive for Urology Healthcare Properties LLC. The incentive exempts the company from paying property taxes for up to five years on a 46,000-square-foot, threestory building planned to be built near the intersection of Fortification and North State Streets. Baptist Hospital will lease the third floor, and the company expects doctors and other health-care companies to begin occupying the space in July 2015. When it comes to economic development, “we’re becoming the A team for the city,” said Council President Charles Tillman, of Ward 5. Ward 1 Councilman Quentin Whitwell said that he’s heard commitments to the city’s

Fondren After 5’s Relaunch Ron Chane, an unofficial organizer for Fondren After 5 since mid-December last year, recently decided it was time to kick the event up a notch. “My store, Swell-O-Phonic, is going to be at the head of an effort to re-launch Fondren After 5, since it was getting a little slow and weak,” Chane said. “Starting February 6, we’ll be trying to create a megaplatform of traffic for artists, designers and musicians, dreamers and doers, for an event at Fondren Corner.” The Fondren After 5 re-launchwill feature at least 27 vendors. Six to eight musical acts are scheduled to perform. Cups, Sneaky Beans, Que Sera Sera and Fondren Guitars will all bring their own bands in as well. Rainbow Co-op is opening its lobby for artists and vendors, and starting next month, Rainbow will open High Noon Café at night for future Fondren after 5 events. For information, call Ron Chane at 601-720-2426 or email newfondrenafter5@ Send metro business news tips to dustin@


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Gov. Phil Bryantâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Welfare-Queen Rhetoric


y kids often seem to think Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m a magical being. As most children do, they think that I have an easy solution to their problems. Even everyday life can seem like a fairy tale to children. I assure them that I can solve many things for them, but often the way to fix a problem is hard and takes time. Many people want us to believe there are easy answers to complex issues and problems. Diet-pill companies offer weight loss and self-esteem in a bottle. Family-values groups promise a return to â&#x20AC;&#x153;moralityâ&#x20AC;? if we just stop gay marriage. Anti-choice crusaders say abortion will stop if we close every clinic in the country. Simple answers to complex issues. Our governor is selling us a magical, easy solution when it comes to what poor families, mostly single mothers, on TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) need. He says the they need to be profiled as drug users, screened and drug tested. Why? To save the children, of course, because no child should be raised by a drug addict, especially not one getting â&#x20AC;&#x153;taxpayer dollarsâ&#x20AC;? (like lawmakers do, I might add). Simple answer to a complex issue. We all have heard the stereotype of the drug-addicted parents on welfare selling their benefits to use drugs and neglecting their children. I wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t deny those things happen. It is also rare. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s why we have a system to deal with families in need and children who are neglected and abused. Yet, rather than use the money for the drug-testing programâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;that is sure to be legally challenged and fail as it has in Florida and Utahâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;and shore up the child-protective services budget, the governor is wasting it. One might think itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s more politically beneficial to attack poor women and children since he doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have abortion as a wedge gravy-train issue to ride this session. This drug-testing issue gives all the illusion of getting work done, while doing nothing. There are no simple fixes for poverty in our state. Yet, instead of coming up with a multifaceted comprehensive plan to help, Phil Bryant is feeding us bumper-sticker slogans and welfare-queen rhetoric. Unless his poverty-fighting plan is to increase jobs at the lab company, I fail to see how drug-testing TANF recipients creates jobs and moves our state forward. I respect lawmakers who make tough choices, tell us things we sometimes donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t want to hear and make long-term plans. I do not respect lawmakers passing themselves off as magical beings with simple solutions to complex issues. Even children know fairy tales arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t true.


February 5 - 11, 2014



Why it stinks: In several states, heartbeat bills have met legal fights from reproductive-rights advocates who say the bills are designed to trample on womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s legal rights to obtain abortions. More broadly, target-regulation of abortion providers draws lawsuits wherever they are filed, even in conservative strongholds like Texas and Mississippi. So far, the results have been mixed as courts continue sorting it all out. But an all-too-common occurrence in the Mississippi Legislature involves lawmakers, who are often attorneys, and often Republicans, introducing resource-sucking bills when large questions already exist about the constitutionality of the proposals. Of course, thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s nothing wrong with legislators holding their moral convictions, but when those convictions take the form of legislation that has a highâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;and expensiveâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;probability for failure, they should probably be reserved for the campaign stump, not the Capitol.

Embrace All Forms of Downtown Housing


he building at 300 W. Capitol St. is the nicest public housing in the state. Or so its last two occupantsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;currently, Republican Gov. Phil Bryant, and his predecessor, Haley Barbourâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;like to quip about the domicile, better known as the Mississippi Governorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Mansion. The line always draws a laugh. The jokeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s intended humor lies in the idea that while â&#x20AC;&#x153;public housingâ&#x20AC;? is typically reserved for poor people who receive government assistance, the governorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s residence is a mansion occupied by a guy with a sixfigure salary paid out of the state treasury. All around the Governorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Mansion, however, sit properties that are ripe for conversion into actual lower-income, or even public, housing. For example, next week, Oxford-based Chartre Consulting will break ground on 88 townhomes near the historic Mt. Helm Baptist Church. Other developers are eyeing properties in and around downtown for low-income housing as well. While Bryant has given some of these developments his full support, he bristled at the idea of one low-income housing development sitting a couple blocks away from where he rests his boots at night. That development, slated for the 200 block of West Capitol Street, and known as the Capitol Art Lofts, would have also been built using housing tax credits to attract members of an inherently low-income profession: artists. Working artists would be the preferred tenants, creating opportunities for young creatives to inject an exciting, new kind of vibe into downtown. It was a partnership between New Orleansâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;

HRI Properties, which participated in the renovations of the Standard Life buildings and King Edward, and up-and-coming duo of Alan Henderson and Matthew Bolian of BlackWhite Development. Henderson is African American and Bolian, who also interned for a time at the Jackson Free Press, is white. In those ways, the project had potential to be something unique among real-estate developments: collaborative, reflective of diversity and intergenerational. As the Jackson Free Press reports this week (page 8), all that energy is perilously close to being wasted. Developers behind Capitol Art Lofts were unsuccessful in attracting housing tax credits because Mississippi Home Corporation had already given away its full allotment, nearly $70 million, a year in advance. Nor are the enthusiastic entrepreneurs behind BlackWhite involved any longer. The setback is a huge blow for downtown housing, not to mention a needed makeover of a downtown that still shows too little life much of the time. We have long called for downtown leaders and building owners to make it possible for and seek out creative residents and businesses (such as Capital Towers did for our companyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s relocation downtown). You simply canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t just say the words â&#x20AC;&#x153;creative classâ&#x20AC;? and think that downtown can get there without giving access to the young artists and professionals, and their businesses, that make downtown an exciting destination and place to live. Gov. Bryant and other leaders must put aside their fear of anything â&#x20AC;&#x153;low-incomeâ&#x20AC;? and help clear the way for a new downtown, not put up roadblocks to its success.

Email letters and opinion to, fax to 601-510-9019 or mail to 125 South Congress St., Suite 1324, Jackson, Mississippi 39201. Include daytime phone number. Letters may be edited for length and clarity, as well as factchecked.

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Drunk In Love

Jackson 2758 Emerald Dr


am a married woman. I am just entering into my 40s. I have a 20-year-old stepdaughter, an 18-year-old son, a stepson in high school, and a 3-year-old toddler (almost 4). I think my husband is the sexiest man on earth, and I know that my sex appeal isn’t lost on him. Having said that, I dare anyone to tell me that it is without taste to openly flirt with, grind on, kiss or even talk about sex publicly with him. I absolutely would lose it if anyone ever came at me with that outrageous notion. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve heard about the opening performance at the Grammy Awards this year. Husbandand-wife team Jay-Z and Beyoncé took the stage in a steamy, hot-as-hell live performance of the former’s latest hit (and when I say hit, I mean hit— the Internet is sick over the song), “Drunk In Love.” First, let me just take a minute and explain to those who may not be fans of the artists exactly what this song is about. Hold on tight to your chairs. It is about consensual, hot, drunken sex between a man and a woman who are married. Look, now, I hid all the sexy stuff I did when I wasn’t married, and I will be damned if I take it upon myself to hide it now just because some folk get a little uneasy about it. I believe JayZ and Beyoncé would testify to feeling the same way. It was a family show, you say. Really? OK. Well, when you saw Beyoncé twirling sexily in the chair, you should have changed the channel. Some protest that she’s a mom, and that song is not in good taste. Oh yeah? If you happen to have lost all your desire to be sexy because you have children, then that, I’m sorry to say, is your problem. I don’t have that issue, and neither does the hottest female performer in this country. He told her to “eat the cake, Anna Mae,” and that was taken from a movie where Ike was domestically abusing his wife, Tina. Yep. It was. However, the content of the entire song was about the pure chemistry that happens between a man and woman after a night of being at the club and coming home to each other and having a good bit of steamy sex. That may not be your forté. Again,

I apologize that you consider this unsettling. I hope that changes because it can really liven up a sexual experience. He did not mean, eat the cake, or I’m going to beat your ass. If that’s what you took from it, so be it. But you’re wrong. Being a mother and wife does not equal boring. Who told you that? Why does society have to have so much influence on what happens in a person’s personal life? I truly take issue with the fact that every time a person does something that is all them and not influenced by what someone else thinks or writes, here comes the Bible-thumping old-schoolers to tell us why it’s so wrong. Here’s a clue: If you don’t like it, don’t watch it. Don’t want to hear it, turn it off. Don’t want your children influenced, don’t expose them to it. (Side note: It’s no more raunchy than the stuff many of you let your kids watch on television and videos. In fact, one might argue that at least these two are married. Your children are going around reciting lyrics from Nikki Minaj and Drake without pause. Do you have any idea what they are saying? No? You should.) This idea that exciting sex can only happen to single people is twisted in itself. It’s crazy to say the least. If anything, use this song as a resource to say to your children (of adequate age) that once you are married, that’s when the good stuff begins. Until that point, you shouldn’t do it. That might keep people from thinking they must be near their deathbed before they even get married. It might contribute to more marriages and fewer divorces, too. Look, I’m not saying everybody has to be drunk in love. I’m simply saying keep your judgment to yourself. Stop thinking that everything has to be so Scarlet Letter-ish. Goodness! Not everything that breaks the box is wrong. Sometimes it’s needed. So, I say hooray that Bey-Z decided to take a stand at the Grammys for real, good love and real, good sex between a married couple. I’m happy they are unapologetic about it. I sure would be. Funmi “Queen” Franklin is a word lover, poet and advocate for sisterhood. She has a weakness for reality shows and her puppy, Shaka.

Being a mother and wife does not equal boring.

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Love + Technology = Mystery





by Trip Burns

February 5 - 11, 2014



rowing up, I didn’t know very much about my great-grandparents. I have few memories of them. Once, I was visiting my great-grandmother in the hospital when I was very young. I asked why she was sick. My mother responded, “She swallowed too much smoke.” To this day I remember being told that, even at an age when I could not read or write. Oral traditions and stories are still just as powerful as they ever were. Although I’ve looked through old photographs to see astoundingly young versions of my father’s grandparents, I never really knew them. I don’t get a sense of just who they were in their lives. They’re a mystery to me. This mystery extends to my grandparents, who hold great significance and wonder for me. I am curious: What were they like when they my age? What would it be like to meet them? What would we talk about? The difference is that I’ve spent a lot of time with my grandparents (even the ones that are no longer here) compared to my great-grandparents, but I’m still curious. Now all that’s changed. People 100 years from now will not have such mysteries. They’ll have different ones. Imagine a future where, if you are curious about your great-grandmother, you can find all there is to know through social media—her baby pictures posted on her mother’s Facebook page, a Vine of her taking her first steps with a family

pet, the Instagram selfie she posted when she graduated high school or her Pinterest filled with her subtle hopes. If you want to know what she sounded like, you can watch a video she posted of herself goofing around on a random Sunday. Here are her favorite movies and books, here’s what music she listened to on Spotify. Here are her thousands of tweets she accumulated in her life. Through all of this, how can we retain mystery? What are the aspects about us that we don’t post on social media? It turns out, thankfully, that we don’t share everything. It also turns out that what we don’t share is more valuable than what we share. For example, have you ever had the pleasure of meeting someone new, looking at their profile somewhere, going through all their pictures, going through the years of posts and funny quotes, and then meeting them again? You know and have seen all of this information, but what did it really tell you about them? So they like to post pictures of themselves with quotes that require a Google search. What exactly does that tell you about them other than that plain fact? Perhaps it’s not too dissimilar from reading an extensive biography of someone and yet still wondering, what were they like in real life? Technology, in the broadest sense of the word, allows us to interact with our loved ones in astonishing ways. Just

this Christmas, I watched my grandmother FaceTime with my sister in Wyoming (my grandmother initiated it on her iPad). Socially, a great deal of our culture is now infused with different modes of communication. These technological devices are getting cheaper to produce, so it’s easier for more people to participate. This can change not only the way we see each other, but times in history. We now live in a world where soldiers post from the front lines of Afghanistan, where we see the protesters in Egypt and Yemen, thousands of miles away … instantly. Even with all this technology (much like new “technologies”: the written word, books and TV, etc.), love still confounds us. It’s still a mystery why we love whom we love. Sure, we can point to science for evidence—there’s plenty of that, but the answers are unsatisfying. We can be in a “relationship” with every avenue available to “get in touch” with someone, except for the one that’s most valuable these days: hanging out, taking a walk or ride or drive, having a meal, watching “Sherlock” on Netflix, lounging around in bed. Although I’m exhilarated with the multitude of ways I can interact with the people I love, I’m more pleased with the mysteries that plain facts and texts cannot convey—a laugh, the brilliant color of their eyes, the feel of a cool hand, and the warmth of an embrace.

Loosening My Grip by Casey Purvis


goodbye. I was thankful to be there for her exit. Love is an unforgiving emotion. It gives and takes in equal measure. It keeps us up at night, exhilarated, regretting something we said or did, wondering what we could have done differently. It gives us the will to hold on to someone or something. We make sacrifices we would never dream of making in its name. Some people talk about “good love” and “bad love,” as if there is a distinction. To me, love simply is what it is. It is breathtakingly beautiful. It is monstrously ugly. Often, love isn’t about us. Sometimes, it’s about making an excruciating choice between our own relief and someone else’s. Love sometimes forces us to loosen our grip and let go. We love. We grieve. We let go. Then, we allow love to make a space in our hearts for the memories to reside. We can always hold on to those, when all else is gone. E

compressions when the time came. We all camped out in the waiting room that night, and I passed into a fitful sleep. Around 5 a.m.,, I woke to a chill in the air. No one else stirred. I tiptoed down the stairwell to the empty chapel. I knelt and prayed for a different kind of miracle. I whispered it aloud, aware that I was crying. This quiet prayer was all I could do, a prayer for her release from pain. When I stood up to go back to the waiting room, I felt a sense of peace, as if everything was as it should be. When I reached the waiting room, everyone was awake. My uncle saw me. “We’ve been looking for you,” he said. “Her heart rate is dropping. They’re calling for us.” I walked into her room, rested my head on the side of her bed, and took her cool hand, my breath falling into rhythm with the hum of the ventilator. I waited with her, until the heart monitor registered a flat line. She had said



knew she was gone the moment I laid eyes on her. The hands she had once so meticulously maintained were graying from the steady drip of medicine designed to shunt blood only to the most vital organs of her body. A tube the size of a giant Pixy Stix straw jutted from her mouth, connected to a machine that rhythmically breathed for her. Her glazed eyes stared fixedly at nothing. I searched frantically for the vibrant woman who had previously occupied the shell lying in front of me. She didn’t live here anymore. I thought of the grandmother I knew, the queen of coffee and conversation, the creator of the perfect chocolate cake. She had been my confidante, my closest friend. We’d laughed over shared private jokes. She’d given me advice on matters of the heart that I only half heeded, much to my detriment. She was funny. She was smart. She was outspoken and blunt. She was my role model. Now, the woman whose fingers had sported bold rings with sparkling, bulky stones, and whose figure had always been immaculately turned out in the perfect outfit, lay lifeless before me, entreating me, it seemed. Tears stung behind my eyes, threatening to fall. I willed my knees not to buckle. As the day wore on and, with it, any hope of recovery, her children met with her physician to discuss code status. They decided to wean the drip. She would receive no chest


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705 N State St. Jackson 601-957-1951 |










Who Loves Ya, Baby? by Ronni Mott


Make the decision. No one is per-

fect. Everyoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s heart has been broken. You have to decide that you can still love yourself, especially when the evidence is stacked against you. Be kind to yourself. In Corinthians,


y dad favored intellectualizing over warmth. He kept his affections under tight control. A photo of my mother in her 30s, her hair in a lacquered twist, the satiny dress perfectly fitting her curves, reminds me how narcissistic she could be. Old snaps of me show a chubby kid in thick-lensed glasses, usually close to tears. I earned the down-turned corners of my mouth. Nearly everyone has tales of family woe. Feeling unloved and unworthy rakes in money for self-help books and courses, therapists and psychiatrists. Our search for the perfect soul mate to fill the holes in our hearts has spawned a $1.25 billion online-dating industry, where people frequently â&#x20AC;&#x153;stretch the truthâ&#x20AC;? to make themselves appear more desirable. It took time and a lot of soul-searching to discover that no one would ever fill my bottomless need for love. If I couldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t accept myself, no amount of love and nurturing could ever feel authentic. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it,â&#x20AC;? wrote the 13th-century Sufi mystic Rumi. Before we can give love freely, we first have to love ourselves. It doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t begin â&#x20AC;&#x153;out there.â&#x20AC;? I struggle with that. It takes practice. Harsh words can still have me feeling like an imperfect 7-year-old. Luckily, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve learned some things to set myself right.

Learning to love yourself is the best way to learn to love others.

Paul tells us, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Love is kind.â&#x20AC;? Buddhismâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s instructions in loving-kindness directs us to begin with ourselves. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Until we are able to love and take care of ourselves, we cannot be of much help to others,â&#x20AC;? writes Zen monk Thich Nhat Hahn in â&#x20AC;&#x153;Teachings on Love.â&#x20AC;? Directing kindness to yourself can

take many forms: meditation, eating right, getting your nails done, laughs with a buddy or snuggling your puppy. Whatever you choose, true kindness and gentleness toward yourself can bring you back into balance. Affirm your worth and beauty. Stop comparing yourself to everyone elseâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;especially the airbrushed models in glossy magazines. If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re short and wide (like me!), no amount of positive thinking will make you tall and thin. Finding your own beauty may take deep, honest self-evaluation and, perhaps, some counseling. You may find it through journaling or by posting reminders on your mirror. Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re gorgeous just as you are. You can choose to believe it. Get into action. Make a budget. Set a realistic goal. Apologize. Be grateful. Grief and fear are real, so allow yourself the time and space to experience them. But you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to dwell in a pity party all the time, forever. Finding and fixing (or letting go of ) what isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t working opens space for you. Serve someone else. Sometimes, the best therapy is to make a difference in anotherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s life. In â&#x20AC;&#x153;Help, Thanks, Wow,â&#x20AC;? Anne Lamott writes, â&#x20AC;&#x153;My personal belief is that God looks through Her Rolodex when She has a certain kind of desperate person in Her care, and assigns that person to some screwed-up soul like you or me, and makes it hard for us to ignore that personâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s suffering, so we show up even when it is extremely inconvenient or just awful to be there.â&#x20AC;? Try it. Be well. Be loved.

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Middle Easterner and I would look at each other and think: We’re not alone! Yes! I remember the night I was stopped in not one but three checkpoints for my immigration status and saw young, brown men being handcuffed. I remember visiting chain restaurants such as Applebee’s and Olive Garden in Tupelo with my family, only to realize we were sometimes the only Latino family there and that we’d have to eat while being stared at by (mostly) white people.


from Us to You!

with John Weiner


e often think of love between parents, friends or lovers but as someone who has moved around a lot, I believe our relationships with places can be just like relationships with other people. I’ve lived in the United States, Mexico and now Argentina, but I wasn’t born in any of these countries. Each place I’ve lived in has its share of complexities, all of which marked me in some way. Each country has its own temperament. In the U.S., I had to learn about diversity, hard work and rugged individualism, and I had to teach myself to ignore anti-immigrant hatred for my own sanity. Growing up in Los Angeles, I knew I had a community to vent with. We who migrated to Los Angeles didn’t always agree on how to solve or deal with our daily struggles, but we were able to find someone to listen, or we found someone who had it even worse than we did. I think I had a lot of imperfect comfort in southern California. I knew I’d get racially profiled, and I knew I was in a school system meant to steer me toward a life of crime and gangs. I went through the schoolto-prison pipeline and survived, along with many others who did the same. I think the relationship between me and southern California consisted of tough love. Mississippi was even more complex than I imagined. Out of all my relationships with places, it’s the one that was the most unequal. We were incompatible from the beginning. This is a place that scares the hell out of most people of color raised outside the Deep South, the butt of national jokes. For many people of color, Mississippi is a hostile home. It’s a pit of fire for us: The strongest survive and have the scars to prove it. When I think of Mississippi, I think of loneliness. My relationship with this state— one I think many of immigrant descent can relate to—is similar to a one-way relationship between couples, where one tries a lot harder for things to work out, only to watch everything come crashing down. It was like being in a home with parents you can never please. In Mississippi I remember giving other Latinos awkward waves hello and nods of acknowledgement. In situations like this, some random Latino, Asian, Indian or

The places you live represent a different kind of love.

A friend of mine knew I wasn’t exactly happy in Mississippi, and offered me the chance to come work in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I needed more perspective on my troubled relationship with the American South. So I made my plans, and I’m still here today. Buenos Aires has been pleasant, even though adjusting to a new country can be difficult. But since I did this before as a Salvadoran migrant brought to the United States at age 2, I didn’t feel as powerless this time. This city has given me an equal amount of what I’ve given it as well. I don’t feel Buenos Aires pushing me around, trying to demean me because of my skin color or history. No one really bothers me here. Even though Argentina and South America have a lot of social problems, I’ve learned to live with them. If I stay here longer, I can actually love Buenos Aires: it’s the right amount of messy and extremely tolerant about my imperfections. This journey will probably not last forever, as I have a family and obligations to return to in the U.S. But this is probably equivalent to a spring fling that is meant to teach me how to become stronger and love myself regardless of where I’m living at the moment. Those kinds of relationships are necessary and good, too.

fore a female singer. This method will usually keep the mix intriguing as well as draw the listener in. Fill it up. A blank CD usually runs around 80 minutes. That means you can include more than an hour’s worth of music. Don’t skimp and just put five or six songs on your mix.


Pick a theme. This seems simple enough. Since it’s Valentine’s Day, I’m sure the theme will be “love.” Of course, your mix can be whatever you want. However, the best mixes are coherent. Chances are, you’ll be using different songs by different artists, so the music should have a natural flow. Strive for diversity. One of my favorite techniques in compiling a mix is using different genres and styles to keep listeners interested. Try to have a rock song followed by a jazz tune. Try a fast song and then a slower one. Maybe you can have a male singer be-

Mixtapes are a great way to convey your feelings for someone and also give them a little dose of you.

Make it personal. I believe the listener should know something about me by the end of a mix,. I not only try to include songs or music that I think they will like, but also bands and artists that I like. One of my great pleasures is introducing someone to music they may not know, so my mixes will usually contain a song or two by some of my favorite bands. Sometimes making a mixtape or CD can be slightly daunting, but if you put the right amount of thought and time into it, you can make something far more lasting than a card or candy.



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Start strong/end strong. The first song or two should set the tone for the mix. This lets the listener know what this mix is all about. Once you make your statement, then settle in to the flow of music pertaining to your theme. At the end, go for the fireworks. Put a final song that will leave the listener knowing exactly what you are saying. For example, if you’re making a mix for your significant other and you have a “special song,” then it might be appropriate to go at the end. It is almost a reward for taking the time to hear your mix.


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don’t think I’m great at a lot of things, but I am confident I can do one thing well: make a mixtape or CD. I have spent most of my life learning as much as I can about music and different artists. Because of my lifetime of musical study, I can think of a song for just about any occasion. My wife and I recently developed a road-trip game where she asks me to play a song about something particular, and I must dial it up on the iPod. I’m rarely stumped. A mix tape is a great Valentine’s Day gift to your sweetheart because it’s personal. The fact that it’s something you made for them shows how much thought into it. Not to mention, mix tapes and CDs are also pretty affordable. You probably already have all the songs you’re going to use, and you can purchase a pack of blank CDs for less than five bucks. Now, before you go slapping a bunch of tunes on a disc, you should consider a few things. Here are some guidelines I use when choosing what should make up my mix.

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Valentine’s Day Round-up by Dustin Cardon

Nick’s Restaurant

3000 Old Canton Road., 601-981-8017 Nick’s Restaurant is offering a three-course dinner starting with a choice of two soups or salads. The main courses include Chateaubriand for two, salmon, grilled pork tenderloin, chicken piccata and Maine lobster with fettuccine pasta; and a variety of desert choices. The dinner is $50 per person.


February 5 - 11, 2014

Strawberry Cafe


include a Shrimp Amore—jumbo shrimp stuffed with crabmeat stuffing, wrapped in bacon, glazed with a seafood sauce and served with rice pilaf and asparagus.—beef medallions and redfish Cupid. The soups are lobster bisque and tomato bisque, and the desserts include red velvet cake and strawberries Romanoff.

Hal and Mal’s

200 S. Commerce St., 601-948-0888 Swing de Paris will be playing for a special dinner with menu to be determined.

Amerigo Italian Restaurant

6592 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland, 601-977-0563 Amerigo’s Valentine’s Day special is blackened snapper with broccoli and cheese potatoes served with asparagus and hollandaise, strawberry tiramisu, a strawberry version of the restaurant’s classic dessert, and an Italian Kiss, an Italian sparkling wine with pomegranate. No reservations.


1000 Highland Colony Parkway, Ridgeland, 601-898-6468 The week of Valentine’s Day, Mint will offer nightly special dinners starting with a father-daughter dinner Wednesday, an early-bird dinner Thursday, a Valentine’s Day dinner Friday and the last-chance dinner with two-for-one entrees Sunday. Mint is taking requests for flowers and Champagne. Flowers are $25 to $65, and Champagne is $25 to $100. A credit-card number is needed to hold a reservation, with a $50 no-show fee. Regular and special menus are available on all nights. The menus and prices are to be determined.


e celebrate love Feb. 14—and not all of us love cooking dinner. What better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than showing your affection for your loved ones and local Jackson businesses than having dinner at local restaurants? Luckily, some of them want to help you celebrate.

4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562 For its Valentine’s Day special, CHAR will have pan-seared gulf shrimp served over au gratin potatoes and finished with a corn and lobster sweet chili sauce, a jumbo lump crab meat quesadilla topped with tomato relish and avocado cream and drizzled with a chipotle glaze, and a strawberry shortcake with brandy-macerated strawberries and whipped cream. Char is accepting reservations.

Sombra Mexican Kitchen

140 Township Ave., Suite 100, Ridgeland, 107 Depot Drive, Madison, 601-707-7950 601-856-3822 Sombra’s Valentine’s Day special inA special menu and Strawberry’s regucludes grilled redfish topped with a roasted lar menu will be available, including apcorn and crab pico de gallo and served with petizers such as smoked tuna dip, crab and an herbed vegetable medley and jalapValentine’s Day is the perfect day to have a romantic evening out with your loved one. asparagus bisque, and chocolate salad made eno cheese grits, and a shrimp and avocado with mixed greens, red onions, goat cheese, salad. Sombra is not accepting reservations. fresh strawberries and chocolate vinaigrette. Entrees include filet and lobster, grouper on white rice with roasted peppers and lemon butter sauce with capers. Dessert is chocolate Walker’s Drive-In Anjou Restaurant cheesecake with strawberries. Optional wine pairings are 3016 N. State St., 601-982-2633 361 Township Ave., Ridgeland, 601-707-0587 available with the menu. The special menu is $88 per couple, Walker’s will have their regular menu and a special fourAnjou will have Filet Oscar—grilled beef tenderwine pairing $18 a single and $34 for a couple. course menu on Valentine’s Day. Dinner is $65 per person. loin topped with jumbo lump crab meat, béarnaise sauce and shaved asparagus, and served with a root vegetable puree and French onion Brussels sprouts, a pan-seared The Penguin High Noon Café red snapper topped with baby heirloom tomato jam, 1100 J.R. Lynch St., 769-251-5222 2807 Old Canton Road, 601-366-1513 and served with a creamy parmesan risotto and sautéed A special Valentine’s concert, titled “Love Notes: An For Valentine’s Day, High Noon Café will host its vegetable medley, and a mixed berry tiramisu—strawEvening With Larry Johnson and the Beasty Tunes,” begins “My Vegan Valentine” dinner, a four-course vegan dinner berries, raspberries and blueberries between layers of laat 7 p.m. The special menu for the evening includes five with a prix fixe menu. Tickets are $50 and reservations are dyfingers, with a sweet mascarpone cheese, and soaked entrees, three salads, two sups and five desserts. The salads available at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. Visit for in Chambord. include the Penguin salad and a Passion salad. The entrees more information. See and add more events and dinners at




BELHAVEN LOCATION OPEN DURING CONSTRUCTION Mon - Thur: 11am-10pm | Fri - Sat: 11am-11pm | Sun: 11am - 9pm 925 East Fortification Street Jackson, MS 39202 601-352-2001 | NORTH JACKSON LOCATION Mon - Thur: 11am-9pm | Fri - Sat: 11am-10pm | Sun: 11am - 8pm 5046 Parkway Drive Colonial Mart Jackson, MS 39211 Off of Old Canton Road | 601-957-1975


Best Pizza 2009 - 2013 -Best Of Jackson-


If you get a hair in your chicken salad, it’s one of ours... thx, R.S. Paid advertising section. Call 601-362-6121 x11 to list your restaurant

AMERICAN/SOUTHERN CUISINE Primos Cafe (2323 Lakeland 601-936-3398/ 515 Lake Harbour 601-898-3400) A Jackson institution for breakfast, blue-plates, catfish, burgers, prime rib, oysters, po-boys & wraps. Famous bakery! Two Sisters Kitchen (707 N. Congress St. 601-353-1180) Lunch. Mon-Fri, Sun. Koinonia (136 Adams St. 601-960-3008) Coffeehouse plus lunch & more! Broad Street Bakery (4465 Interstate 55 N. 601-362-2900)Hot breakfast, coffee drinks, fresh breads & pastries, gourmet deli sandwiches.

PIZZA 904 Basil’s (904 E. Fortification, 601-352-2002)Creative pizzas, Italian food, burgers & much more. Casual dining in the heart of Belhaven. Sal & Mookie’s (565 Taylor St. 601-368-1919) Pizzas of all kinds plus pasta, eggplant Parmesan, fried ravioli & ice cream for the kids! Mellow Mushroom (275 Dogwood Blvd, Flowood, 601-992-7499) More than just great pizza and beer. Open Monday - Friday 11-10 and Saturday 11-11.

ITALIAN BRAVO! (4500 Interstate 55 N., Jackson, 601-982-8111) Award-winning wine list, Jackson’s see-and-be-seen casual/upscale dining. Cerami’s (5417 Lakeland Drive, Flowood, 601-919-28298) Southern-style Italian cuisine features their signature Shrimp Cerami.


Eslava’s Grille (2481 Lakeland Drive, 601-932-4070) Latin-influenced dishes like ceviche in addition to pastas, steaks, salads and other signature seafood dishes. Huntington Grille (1001 East County Line Road, Jackson Hilton, 601-957-2800) Mississippi fine dining features seafood, crayfish, steaks, fried green tomatoes, shrimp & grits, pizzas and more. The Islander Seafood and Oyster House (1220 E Northside Drive, Suite 100, 601-366-5441) Oyster bar, seafood, gumbo, po’boys, crawfish and plenty of Gulf Coast delights in a laid-back Buffet-style atmosphere. Que Sera Sera (2801 N State Street 601-981-2520) Authentic cajun cuisine, excellent seafood and award winning gumbo; come enjoy it all this summer on the patio. The Penguin (1100 John R Lynch Street, 769.251.5222) Fine dining at its best. Rocky’s (1046 Warrington Road, Vicksburg 601-634-0100) Enjoy choice steaks, fresh seafood, great salads, hearty sandwiches. Sal and Phil’s Seafood (6600 Old Canton Rd, Ridgeland (601) 957-1188) Great Seafood, Poboys, Lunch Specials, Boiled Seafood, Full Bar, Happy Hour Specials Shea’s on Lake Harbour (810 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, MS 39157 (601) 427-5837) Seafood, Steaks and Southern Cuisine! Great Brunch, Full Bar Outdoor and Seating

MEDITERRANEAN/GREEK Aladdin Mediterranean Grill (730 Lakeland Drive 601-366-6033) Delicious authentic dishes including lamb dishes, hummus, falafel, kababs, shwarma. Vasilios Greek Cusine (828 Hwy 51, Madison 601-853-0028) Authentic greek cuisine since 1994, specializing in gyros, greek salads, baklava cheesecake & fresh daily seafood.


Hickory Pit Barbeque (1491 Canton Mart Rd. 601-956-7079) The “Best Butts in Town” features BBQ chicken, beef and pork along with burgers and po’boys. Haute Pig (1856 Main Street, 601-853-8538) A “very high class pig stand,” Haute Pig offers Madison diners BBQ plates, sandwiches, po-boys, salads.

COFFEE HOUSES Cups Espresso Café (Multiple Locations, Jackson’s local group of coffeehouses offer a wide variety of espresso drinks. Wi-fi.


Burgers and Blues (1060 E. County Line Road, Ridgeland 601-899-0038)Best Burger of 2013, plus live music and entertainment! Capitol Grill (5050 I-55 North, Deville Plaza 601-899-8845) Best happy hour & sports bar, kitchen open late, pub food with soul and live entertainment. Cherokee Inn (960 Briarfield Rd. 601-362-6388) Jackson’s “Best Hole in the Wall,” has a great jukebox, great bar and a great burger. City Grille( 1029 Hwy 51, Madison (601) 607-7885) Southern with Blue Plate Specials; Seafood and Steaks, Happy Hour, Kid Friendly Cool Al’s (4654 McWillie, 601-713-3020) Cool Al’s signature stacked, messy, decadent, creative burgers defy adjectives. Don’t forget the fries! Fenian’s Pub (901 E. Fortification St. 601-948-0055)Classic Irish pub featuring a menu of traditional food, pub sandwiches & Irish beers on tap. Hal and Mal’s (200 S. Commerce St. 601-948-0888) Pub favorites meet Gulf Coast and Cajun specialties like red beans and rice, the Oyster Platter or daily specials. Martin’s Restaurant and Lounge (214 South State Street 601-354-9712) Lunch specials, pub appetizers or order from the full menu of po-boys and entrees. Full bar, beer selection. Mc B’s (815 Lake Harbour Dr. Ridgeland (601) 956-8362) Blue plates, amazing burgers, live music, cold beer, reservoir area Mississippi Legends (5352 Lakeland Dr. Flowood (601) 919-1165) American, Burgers, Pub Food, Happy Hour, Kid Friendly, Late Night, Sports Bar, Outdoor Dining Ole Tavern on George Street (416 George St. 601-960-2700) Pub food with a southern flair: beer-battered onion rings, chicken & sausage gumbo, salads, sandwiches. Underground 119 (119 South President St. 601-352-2322) Pan-seared crabcakes, shrimp and grits, filet mignon, vegetarian sliders. Live music. Opens 4 p.m., Wed-Sat Wing Stop (952 North State Street, 601-969-6400) Saucing and tossing in a choice of nine flavors, Wing Stop wings are made with care and served up piping hot.

February 5 - 11, 2014



Crazy Ninja (2560 Lakeland Dr., Flowood 601-420-4058) Rock-n-roll sushi and cook-in-front-of-you hibachi. Lunch specials, bento boxes, fabulous cocktails. Fusion Japanese and Thai Cuisine (1002 Treetop Blvd, Flowood 601-664-7588) Specializing in fresh Japanese and Thai cuisine, an extensive menu features everything from curries to fresh sushi Nagoya Japanese Sushi Bar & Hibachi Grill (6351 I-55 North, Ste. 131, Jackson 601-977-8881) Fresh sushi, delicious noodles, sizzling hibach & refreshing cocktails from one of jackson’s most well-known japanese restaurants. Ruchi India (862 Avery Blvd @ County Line Rd. 601-991-3110) Classic Indian cuisine from multiple regions. Lamb, vegetarian, chicken, shrimp and more.

VEGETARIAN High Noon Café (2807 Old Canton Road in Rainbow Plaza 601-366-1513)Fresh, gourmet, tasty and healthy defines the lunch options at Jackson’s own strict vegetarian (and very-vegan-friendly) restaurant adjacent to Rainbow Whole Foods.

8 DAYS p 31 | FILM p 32 | MUSIC p 34

Eudora Welty: Reading a Murderer’s Mind E by Ronni Mott


“Life Into Fiction:The Murder of Medgar Evers and ‘Where Is the Voice Coming From?’” showcases Welty’s writing process.

Right, from top: 1. Evers’ killer watched for him from these bushes before he shot the civil-rights giant. 2. Evers was killed in his driveway. 3. An investigator finds Byron de la Beckwith’s rifle in the bushes. 4. Eudora Welty’s “Where Is the Voice Coming From?” was published in the New Yorker magazine in 1963.

of the story. The author’s crabbed notes appear between the lines and in the margins of the yellowing paper. She rewrote the title several times and included her editor’s comments. He asked Welty to eliminate details that might prejudice a jury. While Welty did not join marches, her quiet determination made an indelible impact on readers. “She felt very strongly that her fiction was her activism, although she didn’t quite say it that way,” says Bridget Edwards, director of the Eudora Welty House and curator of the exhibit. “That was her contribution.” Welty also took part in Social Science Forums at Tougaloo College and spoke widely in other settings. In 1963, segregation was the rule in Mississippi schools,

but Welty advocated for open admission to her literary festival keynote speech at Millsaps College, for example, and the administration acquiesced. For writers, Welty’s meticulous process is a revelation. To restructure her work, she cut the paragraphs apart and used sewing pins to tack the strips to clean paper, rearranging and rewriting until she was satisfied. Today, when word processors can obliterate writer’s drafts, Welty’s award-winning example sets a high standard for the writer’s craft. See “Life Into Fiction: The Murder of Medgar Evers and ‘Where Is the Voice Coming From?’” through Feb. 13 at the Eudora Welty House Education and Visitors Center (1109 Pinehurst St.). Visit or call 29 601-354-5219 for more info.

udora Welty only wrote one story in anger. She drafted it the day she learned of Medgar Evers’ assassination. “Where is the Voice Coming From?” appeared in The New Yorker magazine about a month later, in July 1963. When she wrote it, Welty didn’t know the name of Evers’ killer. The city of Jackson became Thermopylae, the Grecian gate to Hades. Welty did know bigoted Mississippi whites of the era, 100 years after the end of slavery. She delved deeply into that “alien and repugnant” mindset and wrote her fictional account from the assassin’s point of view. “Whoever the murderer is, I know him: not his identity, but his coming about, in this time and place,” Welty wrote later. “… I felt, through my shock and revolt, I could make no mistake.” Welty’s story proved prescient. In one passage, the killer watches after firing the fatal shot: “Something darker than him, like the wings of a bird, spread on his back and pulled him down. He climbed up once, like a man under bad claws, and like just blood could weigh a ton he walked with it on his back to better light. Didn’t get no further than his door. And fell to stay.” A Eudora Welty House exhibit focuses on the story. Evers and his wife, Myrlie, were leaders in the Civil Rights Movement; Medgar Evers was Mississippi’s first NAACP field secretary. The exhibit features photos and brief bios of Evers and his killer, Byron de la Beckwith, along with a film container from a white Citizens Council forum and campaign buttons for Ross Barnett, whom the assassin mentions in Welty’s story. Barnett, governor from 1960 to 1964, was an avowed segregationist who repeatedly defied efforts to end Jim Crow racial discrimination in Mississippi. Famously, he interrupted the testimony of Evers’ widow, Myrlie Evers, at de la Beckwith’s second trial for murder to shake the killer’s hand. Two all-white juries failed to reach verdicts in 1964. A third trial in 1994 finally secured de la Beckwith’s conviction. Welty eerily captured the machinations of a murderer’s mind. Quotes from “Where is the Voice Coming From?” caption crime-scene photos from the assassination site at the exhibit. The centerpiece, however, is Welty’s original draft



Weekly Lunch Specials

Under the Painting by Julian Rankin


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Wednesday February 5

KARAOKE with DJ STACHE Thursday February 6

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Friday February 7


Saturday February 8

LIVE DJ Monday February 10

PubQuiz with Casey & John 8PM

Tuesday February 11 2 for 1 Highlife & PBR


February 5 - 11, 2014

with Wesley Edwards


FREE WiFi 416 George Street, Jackson Open Mon-Sat Restaurant Open Mon-Fri 11am-10pm & Sat 4-10pm

601-960-2700 Tavern

The Cedars hosts a show featuring four Clinton artists (from left: Sam Biebers, Wyatt Waters, Ron Lindsey and Paul Fayard) and friends.


n the outskirts of Jackson, four Clinton artists meet on Sundays in routine salons, of the renaissance variety, to discuss paintings, process and, more often than not, obscure popular culture. This gathering of Wyatt Waters, Ron Lindsey, Sam Biebers and Paul Fayard, who have carved out their own creative enclave, differs only in that it lacks a Parisian locale and occurs instead in the corner of a Starbucks in western Hinds County. The artwork of these four will be on view under one roof for the first time from Feb. 6 through 21 at The Cedars in Fondren. The exhibition, “The Artists of Clinton,” is the first in the 2014 “Four Seasons of The Cedars Visual and Performing Arts Series,” presented by Fondren Renaissance and curated by Jackson oil painter Jerrod Partridge. These artists, friends as much as colleagues, describe their loose association as everything from the Four Mules (rather than horsemen) to the Brick Street Bastards (on one Sunday after coffee, they recreated a bastardized version of The Beatles’ infamous street-crossing album-cover-shoot and dubbed it, with jocundity, Crabby Road). While they paint very different subjects using varied media and techniques, they are connected by an ethos of humility and their charmingly cynical, yet lighthearted worldview. Each of them has also studied under respected Mississippi College art professor Dr. Sam Gore, deepening further their connections to Clinton. “Being able to know these guys and paint with them really is the art-spirit in action,” Fayard said. “I’ve never had that before. I really do feel like this is a brotherhood.” “It’s a real honor for me,” echoed Biebers, “because I feel like I’m in the show with big brothers—people that I’ve always admired and respected, and from whom I’ve learned a lot.”

In fact, it may be less like a French salon after all and more like a Mississippi deer camp. Less blood and bullets, but the same camaraderie that hunting clubs have long fostered. They substitute shushed tones of midnight conversation for the vibrant cadence of morning coffee, swapping liquor for lattes, cardigans in lieu of camo. Making art is, after all, a hunt for meaning and expression, and each of these four artists has found his own path. Biebers’ inspiration comes from the natural world. He spoke of the memory of walking, as a child, atop the dry leaves of fall and the rich experience of their crackle under foot. One of his paintings in the exhibition is a focused interpretation of a single leaf on canvas, embodied with his own empiricism. Fayard’s newest paintings include a depiction of fellow artist Ron Lindsey at work, surrounded by a backdrop of studio portraits. It is entitled “Headhunter.” Fayard, in addition to being a working artist, is an employee of The Wolfe Studio, the respected and hallowed artist compound created long ago by Jackson artists Karl and Mildred Wolfe. “There’s a great Karl Wolfe quote,” Fayard said, “where he says that what people want from an artist is their soul. You can’t take somebody else’s heart and apply that to your work. It has to come from within. I do work that has a resonance to me, and hopefully that comes through to somebody else, too.” Lindsey himself, beginning as a teenager, was apprentice and friend to Karl and Mildred, and that has greatly shaped his artistic journey. “Mildred said every square inch of the canvas should be interesting,” Lindsey said. “And that’s one of the things that’s stuck with me.” Especially compelling in the show are portraits Lindsey has done of clients at the Mississippi State Hospital, where he teaches art. He has lived in Clinton longer than any

of the four, having moved there in 1962, when, as he said, “the roads were not even paved.” Not longer after, in 1970, Clinton’s resident mascot Wyatt Waters joined him. Waters is coming off a recent exhibition of impressive Italian watercolors, but this show with his friends has special meaning even in the shadow of his most recent body of work. It allows him to paint free of expectation. “I’ve done a lot of themed shows,” Waters said. “This is not going to be like that. This is just going to be about the four of us. I like the freedom it gives me, because I can do things I like that I might not have shown before.” One morning, as he is apt to do, Wyatt Waters pulled forth from his catalogue of references a song by Pierce Pettis and offered it up for conversation. “He wrote this song called ‘Chase the Buffalo,’” Waters said. “It went something like: ‘Indians of long ago / Followed after buffalo / They found a use for every part / Everything except his heart.’” For these artists, every bit of their body of creativity finds purpose. Making art is for sport and enjoyment, sure, but it is also a way of life. And the act of painting is a rite in itself. Clinton being unmistakably a Baptist town, it’s perhaps appropriate to think of the paint smeared on their fingers and across their denim as a baptismal stain of sorts. Through it comes a specific type of artistic communion: watercolors turned into wine, canvasses anointed with oils and acrylics. Ultimately, the source of inspiration for each is the wild and individualized creativity, made tame and encapsulated into finished work, preserved in pigment, a taxidermic trophy of the hunt, mounted on the wall for all to see. “The Artists of Clinton” runs Feb. 6-21 at The Cedars (4145 Old Canton Road, 601366-5552). The free opening reception Thursday, Feb 6., 5-8 p.m.




Curls, Kinks & Fashion: Natural Hair Forum & Fashion Show is at Duling Hall.

Yoga Foundations Series is at Butterfly Yoga.

OFNA Happy Hour is at Fondren Public.

BEST BETS FEB. 5 - 12, 2014

“Platanos and Collard Greens” is at 7 p.m. Feb. 5 at Jackson State University in the McCoy Auditorium. The comedy play is about the relationship between African Americans and Latinos in New York City.

Internationally renowned pianist Asiya Korepanova performs at 11:30 a.m. at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School (370 Old Agency Road, Ridgeland). Free; call harthc@gosaints. org; … “Platanos and Collard Greens” is at 7 p.m. at Jackson State University (1400 John R. Lynch St.), in McCoy Auditorium. $15, $5 JSU students; call 601979-7036;




Jason Turner gives a free concert Feb. 11 at Underground 119.


“M*A*S*H” is at 7:30 p.m. at Black Rose Theatre (103 Black St., Brandon). The play is based on the popular film about an Army medical unit serving during the Korean War. $15, $10 students, military and seniors (cash or check); call 601-825-1293; …… Jars of Clay performs at 9 p.m. at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.). $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Call 601-292-7999;


ing Ave.). Fashion designer A’LiMara is the host. Tickets available at Natural U Salon. $10 in advance, $15 at the door, $25 VIP; call 601-937-5559; … Open-mic Jam Sessions with Cody Smith is from 9 p.m.-2 a.m. at Kemistry Sports Bar and Hookah Lounge (3716 Interstate 55 N., Unit 2). All musicians and singer-songwriters welcome. Free; call 601-713-1500.



Celebration of Light Community Art Project is at 2 p.m. JACKSONFREEPRESS.COM at Arts Center of Mississippi (201 E. Pascagoula St.). ParticiFAX: 601-510-9019 pants create paper mandalas that DAILY UPDATES AT will be used to make a commuJFPEVENTS.COM nity quilt. $10 per family; call 601-832-6901. … Mississippi HeARTS Against AIDS Benefit is from 6-10 p.m. at Hal & Mal’s (200 Commerce St.). $40; call 948-0888; email jane@; … Ignite the Night is from 7-10:30 p.m. at Mississippi Children’s Museum (2145 Highland Drive). $75; call 601-981-5469;


Visiting Artist: Katrina Byrd is from 1:30-4 p.m. at Mississippi Children’s Museum (2145 Highland Drive).

The writer, actress and “boa flouncer” gives workshops on stage presence, acting and self-confidence. $8, children under 12 months and museum members free; call 601-981-5469; … “Home, Sweet Home” is at 2 p.m. at Old Capitol Museum (100 S. State St.). The Mississippi Opera presents the performance based on opera singer Adelina Patti’s life. $25; call 601-960-2300;


OFNA Happy Hour is from 6-7:30 p.m. at Fondren Public (2765 Old Canton Road). The weekly social is for those who live, work or play in Fondren. Free; call 216-2589; … “10 Ways to Say I Love You” Dinner Theater is at 7 p.m. at Char (4500 Interstate 55 N.). Includes a three-course meal. Reservations required. For ages 18 and up. $49. Call 601-937-1752;


Jason Turner performs at 6:30 p.m. at Underground 119 (119 S. President St.). Free; call 601-352-2322.


“Rusalka” is at 6:30 p.m. at Tinseltown (411 Riverwind Drive, Pearl). $20, $18 seniors, $14 children; call 601-9365856; … Tickle Me Wednesdays Comedy Show is at 9 p.m. at The Penguin Restaurant & Bar (1100 John R. Lynch St.). $10 advance, $15 at door; call 769-2515222 or 601-317-0769; email; ... The Carolina Chocolate Drops perform at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.), 8 p.m. Info, p. 35.


“I Dreamed My People Were Calling But I Couldn’t Find My Way Home: A Solo Exhibition” opening reception and book signing is from 6-8 p.m. at Gallery1 (One University Place, 1100 John R. Lynch St., Suite 4). The poetry reading is Feb. 7 at noon. See works from Danny Simmons Jr. through May 3. Free; call 601-960-9250. … Curls, Kinks & Fashion: Natural Hair Forum & Fashion Show is from 6:30-9:30 p.m. at Duling Hall (622 Dul-



The Ins and Outs of ‘Mitt’ by Jordan Sudduth


Romney family is snow sledding. Mitt wears duct-taped ski gloves and his Salt Lake 2002 Olympics ski jacket. We then move inside to

*&0 30/.3/2%$%6%.43

Events at William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Free; call 601-5766998; • History Is Lunch Feb. 5, noon. Author Grace Sweet talks about her book “Church Street: The Sugar Hill of Jackson, Mississippi” (co-written with Benjamin Bradley). • History Is Lunch Feb. 12, noon. Freedom Summer participant Jim Kates talks about his book, “Letters from Mississippi,” recalling that period.

Mississippi HeARTS Against AIDS Benefit Feb. 8, 6-10 p.m., at Hal & Mal’s (200 Commerce St.). The annual benefit includes live and silent auctions, local cuisine and live music. Proceeds go toward Mississippians living with HIV and AIDS. $40; call 948-0888; email jane@; Ignite the Night Feb. 8, 7-10:30 p.m., at Mississippi Children’s Museum (2145 Highland Drive). The theme of the annual adults-only fundraiser is “Jazzin’ It Up, N’awlins Style.” Enjoy New Orleans-style food and music, a silent auction and more. Sponsorships available. $75; call 601-9815469;

February 5 - 11, 2014



Events at Mississippi Coliseum (1207 Mississippi St.). • Dixie National Livestock Show and Rodeo through Feb. 18 The annual event features horse and bull-riding competitions, animal exhibits and concerts. The rodeo is Feb. 6-12, and performers include Thomas Rhett, Corey Smith, Ronnie Milsap, Parmalee and Craig Morgan. Livestock show times vary. Free livestock shows, $16-$25 rodeo; call 601-961-4000 or 800-745-3000. • Ram Rodeo Series Feb. 6-12, 7:30-11:30 p.m. See the 2014 lineup of Dodge pickup trucks, and enter the sweepstakes for a chance to win $45,000 toward any eligible Chrysler Group vehicle. Included with rodeo admission;


fter premiering the film at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, Netflix released its original documentary, “Mitt,” via online streaming Jan. 24. The film’s director, Greg Whiteley, was granted complete access to Mitt Romney, his family and campaign from December 2006 through November 2012. Whiteley’s fly-on-the-wall perspective of Romney allows us to see a different side of the politician. Accepting the fact that documentaries always have a weighted bias, I believe many people—not just card-carrying Republicans—can enjoy and appreciate this one. We open on election night 2012. Surrounded by family, close friends and a few advisors, Romney hopelessly receives word that favorable poll numbers are just not there. After asking the room if someone had a phone number for the president, he reluctantly asks, “What do you think you say in a concession speech?” The video is silent, the camera zooms in, and a tearful Romney searches the room for help. Fading in from black, the next scene is joyful, the first attempt at humanizing the man so many thought couldn’t connect with real Americans. It’s December 2006. The

Meet the man behind the portrait in the Netflix documentary “Mitt.”

their lodge, where the family circles around the living room. Sitting in the middle of the sofa with a notepad, Mitt asks the family the

AARP Mature Driving Class Feb. 6, 12:30-4 p.m., at St. Dominic Hospital (969 Lakeland Drive). The refresher course is for drivers ages 50 and up. Registration required. $14, $12 AARP members; call 601-200-6698; Precinct 1 COPS Meeting Feb. 6, 6 p.m., at Jackson Police Department, Precinct 1 (810 Cooper Road). These forums are designed to help resolve community issues. Free; call 601-960-0001. “AIDS Is a Civil Rights Issue” Town Hall Discussion Feb. 7, 6-9 p.m., at Tougaloo College (500 W. County Line Road, Tougaloo). At the Bennie G. Thompson Center. Guest speakers include Rev. Al Sharpton, Jackson Mayor Chokwe Lumumba and AIDS activist Hydeia Broadbent. Free; call 601-342-0795. How to Get a Career in Medicine Feb. 8, 10 a.m.-noon, at Millsaps College (1701 N. State St.). Learn how to decide what field to choose and how to develop an education strategy. For high school students. Registration required. $40; call 601-9741130; “The Beauty of Branding” Aspiring Entrepreneurship Seminar Feb. 9, 5:30-8:30 p.m., at ISH Grill and Bar (Executive Building, 333 N. Mart

pros and cons of running for president. This is where we are introduced to Mitt’s wife, Ann, and their five sons. A few minutes of laughter give way to a serious, tearful Tagg Romney: “I think you have a duty to your country—and to God—to see what comes of it.” The uncertainty among the family is an indicator of exactly where Mitt and his presidential aspirations would inevitably fall short. Throughout the documentary we get the sense that the Romney family, and even Mitt himself, were uncertain. As with campaigns, the film jumps around location to location, covering the campaign for the 2008 election. Eventually, though, the Republican spot goes to McCain, and the Romney crew must look forward another four years. After the screen fades to black, dramatic music arises. Clips of Romney’s 2012 primary campaign begin to play one after another. This leads us to Mitt standing in a corridor alone. Staged? That’s for the viewer to decide. He is about to accept the Republican nomination in Tampa. After Whiteley brashly zooms by the whole “47 percent” debacle, we see Mitt absolutely crush President Obama at their first

Plaza). Tambra Cherie of 97.7 FM is the host. Learn what it takes to have longevity and success in the area of entrepreneurship. Includes a Mogul Mixer from 5:30-6:30 p.m., a cash bar and souvenir booklets while they last. Free; call 713-0442; email

7%,,.%33 90 For Life Health Seminars. Dr. Joel Wallach is the speaker. Free; call 601-540-7497; email; • Feb. 8, 1-4 p.m., at Jackson State University, Walter Payton Recreation and Wellness Center (32 Walter Payton Drive). Dr. Wallach talks about the causes of health problems among African-Americans and how to avoid them. • Feb. 10, 6:30-9:30 p.m., at Mississippi Public Broadcasting (3825 Ridgewood Road). Dr. Wallach talks about the therapeutic benefits of vitamins and minerals. Includes a Q&A and door prizes. Seating limited. Registration begins at 6 p.m. Straight to the Heart Feb. 6, 5:30-7 p.m., at Table 100 (100 Ridge Way, Flowood). Cardiovascular specialists from Baptist Health Systems elaborate on ways to keep the heart healthy and symptoms of problems. Refreshments included. Registration required. Limited seating. $7; call 601-948-6262; Heart Day Feb. 8, 7-11 a.m., at Baptist Medical Center (1225 N. State St.). At the Cardiovascular Center. Register by Feb. 3 to receive screenings such as blood pressure, BMI, cholesterol and glucose. For ages 18 and up. 12-hour fast required. $25; call 601-948-6262 or 800-948-6262.

debate. Back in the hotel room, the Romney team cheers over the clear-cut victory. But a cautious and astute Mitt cites the historical trend that sitting presidents tend to lose the first debate. He says the president is a smart debater, and will be much better next time. Many more campaign scenes, mostly in hotel rooms, flash through, showing dialogue, strategies, and emotions among Mitt and his family and advisers. A heart-warming scene, a tangential offshoot, covers Ann and her battle against multiple sclerosis. Finally, Election Day 2012 looms. Romney jets around on last-minute campaign stops. Ultimately, we end up back in Boston—in a hotel room, of course. We pick up where the documentary started. Personal aide Garrett Jackson takes phone calls from Campaign Manager Matt Rhoades and relays them to “Guv.” In their eyes, the campaign hinges on Ohio, but the numbers there are stagnating. A loss is in sight. “Mitt” is a well-constructed film. Again, you have to take documentaries, especially political ones, with a grain of salt. Is there a bias? Of course. Are parts of it staged? Probably. But in the end, the documentary does what it sets out to: humanize Romney.

34!'%!.$3#2%%. “10 Ways to Say I Love You” Dinner Theater. The Detectives Mystery Dinner Theatre presents the interactive comedy. Cocktails at 6 p.m. (separate price); show at 7 p.m. Includes a three-course meal. Reservations required. For ages 18 and up. Call 601-937-1752; • Feb. 10, at Char (4500 Interstate 55 N.). $49. • Feb. 11, at Sombra Mexican Kitchen (140 Township Ave, Suite 100, Ridgeland). $39. • Feb. 12, at Georgia Blue (111 Colony Crossing, Madison). $49. Events at Russell C. Davis Planetarium (201 E. Pascagoula St.) through Feb. 28. $5.50, $4.50 seniors, $3 children (cash or check); call 601-9601552; • “The Planets” Monday-Friday, noon, and Saturdays, 4 p.m. Actress Kate Mulgrew (“Star Trek: Voyager”) is the narrator in the movie about the solar system. • “Solar System Adventure” Monday-Saturday, 2 p.m. The program allows students to become mission specialists while their spaceship takes them on an adventure past the sun, moon and planets of the solar system. • “The Case of the Disappearing Planet” Saturdays, 1 p.m. Explore the solar system with Skye Watcher and discover what happened to the ex-planet, Pluto, as she tracks down clues that stretch back hundreds of years. • “Space Storm” Saturdays, 3 p.m. The film is an investigation of what happens in space as the sun hurls matter and energy towards Earth that produce a wide range of effects from aurora to power blackouts.

Saturday, Feb 8

10:30-11:30 a.m. and 3:30-4:30 p.m. Includes stories, music, movement, crafts and more.

All Heart

“HeARTS was started 20 years ago with the goal in mind of (providing) funding for people with HIV/AIDS in Mississippi because there was no such organization at the time,” said Anthony Cloy, vice president of Mississippi HeARTS Against AIDS. To date, the organization has raised more than $1 million. The Mississippi HeARTS Against AIDS benefit will begin at 6 p.m. and tickets are $40 at the door. For more information about the HeARTS Against AIDS Benefit, call Anthony Cloy at 601259-0092. The JFP is a media sponsor. —Christina Spann

Friends of Music New Year’s Sampler Feb. 7, 6:30 p.m., at Mississippi College (200 S. Capitol St., Clinton), in Anderson Hall. Enjoy dinner, dancing and music from Dudreaux, the MC Jazz Band, Brick Street Trio and more. The concert is a fundraiser for MC’s music department. Sponsorships available. $50, $30 MC employees and students; call 601-925-3440;

Oxford Film Festival Feb. 6-9, at Malco Oxford Commons (206 Commonwealth Blvd., Oxford). The event includes independent film screenings and related celebrations in several locations. Student discounts available. $8-$30 (individual and multi-day passes sold); call 877-560-3456;

Synergy Night Feb. 8, 9 p.m., at Mediterranean Fish and Grill (6550 Old Canton Road). 99.7 FM WJMI DJ Maranda J hosts the open-mic and jazz event featuring live music. $10, $5 open-mic participants; like Synergy Nights on Facebook.

-53)# Carolina Chocolate Drops Feb. 12, 8 p.m., at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.). The string band plays traditional fiddle and banjo music. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. $15 in advance, $20 at the door. Call 601-292-7999; A Night of Worship with All Sons & Daughters Feb. 6, 7 p.m., at Belhaven University Center for the Arts (835 Riverside Drive). The contemporary Christian duo Leslie Jordan and David Leonard performs. $15, $5 Belhaven students with ID; call 601-965-7027;

,)4%2!29!.$3)'.).'3 Events at Lemuria Books (4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 202). Call 601-366-7619; email info@; • “The Kept” Feb. 5, 5 p.m. James Scott signs books. Reading at 5:30 p.m. $25.99 book. • Lemuria Story Time Saturdays, 11 a.m. Children enjoy a story and make a related craft. Call for the book title. Free. Events at Madison Public Library (994 Madison Ave., Madison). Free; call 601-856-2749. • Baby Bookworms (Ages 0-2) Feb. 5 and Feb. 12, 10-10:30 a.m. and 10:45-11:15 a.m. Parents and caregivers interact with the children through a variety of nursery rhymes, action rhymes, songs and stories. • Youth Storytelling Club (Grades 2 and Up) Feb. 6, 3:30-5 p.m. Learn storytelling techniques. • Rising Readers Storytime (Ages 3-5) Feb. 11,

Events at Purple Word Center for Book and Paper Arts (140 Wesley Ave.). For ages 18 and up. $50, $35 members; • Wet Felting: Turning Wool into Books (Part 1) Feb. 8, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Using dyed sheep and alpaca wool, learn the wet felting technique to create small, soft-form books. • Needle Felting: Turning Wool into Books (Part II) Feb. 8, 2-5 p.m. Using dyed sheep and alpaca wool, learn to create one-of-a-kind twoand three-dimensional pieces.

Ladies Night Wednesdays

5pm Until | 2 for 1 Domestic Long Necks and Well

Throwback Thursday

4pm Until | $1.75 Domestic Long Necks 1410 Old Square Road • Jackson • 601.362.6388

Creative Non-Fiction Writing 101 Hurry! Starts Feb. 8 at JFP Classroom (Capitol Towers, 125 S. Congress St., Suite 1324) Donna Ladd’s popular writing class series meets Feb. 8; Feb. 22; March 1; March 22, 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. + evening party/class reading. Any writing level welcome. Learn to write columns, memoir or even family histories. Light breakfast, workbook included. $150. (Seats limited.) Registration required. Call 601-3626121, ext. 15; email

%8()")43!.$/0%.).'3 Mississippi Collegiate Art Exhibit through Feb. 23, at Arts Center of Mississippi (201 E. Pascagoula St.). See works from students throughout Mississippi in the main galleries. Free; call 601-960-1557, ext. 224. “The Murder of Medgar Evers and ‘Where is the Voice Coming From?’” through Feb. 14, at Eudora Welty House and Museum (1119 Pinehurst Place), at the Education and Visitor Center. The exhibit is an examination of how the civil rights leader’s murder impelled author Eudora Welty to write the New Yorker story about the event, and the repercussions she faced. Tours by reservation only. $5, $3 students, children under 6 free, group discounts available; call 601-353-7762 to schedule a tour or 601-5766850; Student Graphic Design Show through Feb. 28, at Jackson State University (1400 John R. Lynch St.). Students display their work in the Liberal Arts Gallery. Free; call 601-979-7036;

"%4(%#(!.'% Help for Hudspeth Charity Celebration Feb. 6, 5:30 p.m., at Table 100 (100 Ridge Way, Flowood). The event includes hors d’oeuvres and music, and silent auction bidding is from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. A portion of proceeds benefits the women at the Hudspeth Rankin County Group Home Program. $20 suggested donation; call 601-420-4202. Bacchus Ball Feb. 8, 7 p.m., at Country Club of Jackson (345 St. Andrews Drive). The masked ball with a Mardi Gras theme includes heavy hors d’oeuvres and music from 14 Karat Gold. Black tie optional. Proceeds benefit the Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi. $125 unseated, $250 seated; call 601-957-7878 or 877-DFM-CURE;

6A0=3E84F A M A LC O T H E AT R E

South of Walmart in Madison

ALL STADIUM SEATING Listings for Fri. 2/7 – Thur. 2/13

The Monuments PG13 Men

The Nut Job (non 3-D) PG

3-D The Lego PG Movie

Lone Survivor R

The Lego Movie (non 3-D) PG Vampire Academy PG13

August: Osage County R The Wolf Of Wall Street R

Labor Day PG13

American Hustle R

That Awkward R Moment

Saving Mr. PG13 Banks

I Frankenstein (non 3-D) PG13

Frozen (non 3-D) PG

Ride Along PG13

Frozen: Sing Along PG

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit PG13

Opens Wednesday, 2/12 Robocop PG13

GIFT CARDS AVAILABLE Check for updates and more listings. To add an event, email all details (phone number, start and end date, time, street address, cost, URL, etc.) to or fax to 601-510-9019. The deadline is noon the Thursday prior to the week of publication. Or add the event online yourself; check out for instructions.

DAILY BARGAINS UNTIL 6PM Online Tickets, Birthday Parties, Group & Corporate Events @

Mississippi HeARTS Against AIDS’ annual benefit will be at Hal & Mal’s Feb. 8.

Blood in My Eye: Readings of Black Radical Writers Feb. 5, 8 p.m., at Powerhouse Community Arts Center (413 S. 14th St., Oxford). The event includes a staged reading directed by Alice Walker and a performance from the Ole Miss African Drum and Dance Ensemble. Doors open at 7 p.m. Free; call 662-236-6429; email;

Tune in to Black History Feb. 6, 6:30 p.m., at B.B. King Museum and Delta Interpretive Center (400 Second St., Indianola). Local choirs and dance groups perform for Black History Month. Free; call 662-887-9539; email;

$5 Cover 9PM



ississippi HeARTS Against AIDS’ 22nd annual benefit is Feb. 8 at Hal & Mal’s in downtown Jackson. Each year, the Valentine’s Day-themed event features amazing art, food and music. This year the event is dedicated to the late cofounder of Hal & Mal’s, Hal White. It is a favorite art auction for many of the state’s well-known artists, while also presenting new talent in the areas of art and music. Mississippi HeARTS Against AIDS volunteers devote time, energy, and resources to help those living with HIV/ AIDS to live healthy lives and also to prevent the spread of HIV. Mississippi ranks seventh in the national in HIV case rates, with a rate of 20.7 cases per 100,000 people. The Mississippi HeARTS Against AIDS nonprofit organization started in 1992 as project of the Mississippi Episcopal AIDS Committee. It held its first benefit Feb. 13, 1993, at Hal & Mal’s. Since then, the event has become the organization’s largest fundraising opportunity. The organization has since expanded its collaborations to reach their goals of helping Mississippians suffering from HIV/AIDS live healthy and lives and preventing the spread of HIV.


Movieline: 355-9311 33


Talking Life with Bass Drum of Death by Mo Wilson



ailing from one of the South’s growing music cities, Bass Drum of Death has been making a name for itself since releasing its first album, “GB City,” in 2011. Bass Drum of Death began as a solo project from guitarist John Barrett, who has lived in Oxford, Miss., since he was 7 years old. He studied at the University of Mississippi for about a year and a half, but dropped out in 2008 when he got more serious about making music. At that point, he had already been making music under the Bass Drum of Death moniker for about a year. Barrett embarked on his first major North American tour as Bass Drum of Death with drummer Colin Sneed in 2011 and found commercial success with his music. The 2012 film “Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance” featured “Velvet Itch,” the video game “Major League Baseball 2K12” features “Get Found,” and the album’s opening track, “Nerve Jamming,” is on an episode of the BBC series “Waterloo.” Last year, Bass Drum of Death released a self-titled LP, its second full-length album. Two songs from that album, “Bad Reputation” and “Crawling After You,” have since been featured on video games. Barrett is working on several projects now, including a 250-press cassette tape compilation for Record Store Day 2014 benefiting MusiCares, a program through the Grammy Foundation that focuses on human-service issues. Barrett is also working in more of a band format than ever before with Bass Drum of Death; drummer Len Clark, previously of Colour Revolt, and guitarist Josh Hunter perform with him. The garage-rock outfit will play in Jackson for the first time in three years this weekend.

Why did you pick this studio?

It’s got a Neve console, which is a pretty big deal. ... We can record drums straight to tape. Plus, it’s a pretty cool spot: It’s a ranch in the middle of California wine country. It’s where Tom Waits did “Bone Machine” and “The Black Rider.” There’s a lot of history there and a lot of great rooms. Do you think this next record will sound more polished and less lo-fi than your past releases, due to the new studio environment?

It’s hard to say right now. I think it’ll definitely be better mixed. I think doing it in the studio it will be more polished, but I still want to keep that element of grit and nastiness that I have with the home recordings. ... I don’t know if polished is the word I would choose. I would choose “bigger”—I just want everything to sound bigger. Oxford-based garage-rocker John Barrett, aka Bass Drum of Death, performs at Martin’s Restaurant and Bar Feb. 8.

I spoke with Barrett by phone about Mississippi life, his new song, “Black Don’t Glow,” and going into a real studio for the next album. Can you share details about the next album?

We’ll be recording all of March. We’ll be doing two weeks out in Sonoma County, California, at this studio called Prairie Sun, and then this guy whose producing the album will be doing a week of mixing in New York. It probably won’t come out until the fall.

Is BDoD still a solo project at this point, or do all these other collaborators make it more of a band?

I never really wanted it to be a solo project, but I think for the last two records it definitely has, because I’ve done all the recording and writing and performing on the record myself. And now, Len’s coming in and helping out with the writing process a little more. ... This record is more of a band thing than it has been in the past, for sure. Bass Drum of Death performs at 10 p.m. Feb. 8 at Martin’s Restaurant and Bar (214 S. State St., 601-354-9712). Spacewolf and Passing Parade also perform. To stream “Black Don’t Glow” and for more information, visit Read a longer version of this story at

music in theory

by Micah Smith

‘Because the Internet’ Boasts Quality and Quantity

February 5 - 11, 2014




t’s difficult to separate the comedic television and movie roles of actor Donald Glover from his unforgiving, guiltlessly pensive persona as rapper Childish Gambino, but his most recent release “Because the Internet” certainly helps cement that divide. While the album has no shortage of humorous moments—Glover is still a comedian at heart—“Because the Internet” is biting, brutal and much less derivative than many rap albums, though its dramatic flair and inventiveness aren’t bound to hit the mark with all listeners. “Because the Internet” runs a lengthy 19 tracks, covering rap music’s most-tread topics. From pride in your past to false friends who only stay if the money does, the typical tropes of hip-hop still rear their heads. However, Glover’s best feature is his endlessly creative lyricism, which can wield pop-culture references and puns with the best of them. Couple that with a smooth and speedy delivery of rhymes and a rare skill for meaningful vocal inflection, and even at its worst, “Because the Internet” never feels

Childish Gambino revitalizes rap tropes with inventive beats and thoughtprovoking yet often humorous lyrics.

repetitive or tedious. Handfuls of sweetly sung R&B refrains and experimental interludes further serve to avoid monotony, and unlike some rappers, Glover’s singing voice is pretty solid. After hearing the single “3005,” I somewhat expected to see “featuring …” next to its title, but it’s Glover who sings skillfully and ear-

nestly, “No matter what you say or what you do, when I’m alone, I’d rather be with you.” In the future, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Childish Gambino make an appearance on another artist’s track for the sole purpose of singing a chorus. “Telegraph Ave. (“Oakland” by Lloyd)” gives us the record’s title and is probably the clearest exemplar of Glover as a multi-tiered vocalist. As for the humor, it’s plentiful and well-placed whenever it’s employed. The song “Sweatpants” features some of the best instances of Glover’s comedy chops coming into play. As he lists off what makes him the best, he mentions he owns a Fisker and adds, “vroom-vroom.” Then he immediately pauses the song to inform the listener, “Fiskers don’t make noise when they start up. Just so you know.” But my personal favorite line is, “More green than my Whole Foods, and I’m too fly; Jeff Goldblum.” Some listeners might take issue with what feels like a breath of fresh air to me. Glover’s songs feature far more layered beats than most rap contains, and the difference

may be too off-putting for the unaccustomed consumer. He consistently inserts sound clips of everything from white noise to phone calls and sirens to add a flourish to his beats. While these elements are often low in the mix (certainly less noticeable than Glover’s rapping), it’s a clutter that isn’t often heard in rap music. Some rap songs scarcely feature a single note, let alone a fully written composition of violin, harp and a soloing electric guitar, as is the case in the explosive ending of Childish Gambino’s “The Worst Guys.” Ultimately, these additional complexities won’t necessarily attract a base of hardcore rap fans, but the added musicianship gives me a greater appreciation for the different talents that Glover delivers as Childish Gambino. His lyrical content is top-notch, his singing voice is effective, and his backing tracks are intricate and imaginative. “Because the Internet” won’t likely change the whole of hip-hop, but it does reinforce Childish Gambino as a strong voice for testing the limitations that we’ve put on rap music.


by Briana Robinson



key philosophy that brings the members of Carolina in Brooklyn, so it was like a big thing for me.” Chocolate Drops together is that the older music— He has also had similar experiences during which the roles particularly that of black string bands—that shaped were reversed. After he performed a blues song from famed musiwhat we hear today should not be forgotten. cian Robert Johnson one night, a man came up to him and said, “When I was asked to join the band, we had a lot of simi- “I’ve never seen a black guy play bluegrass before.” lar philosophies and ideas about music and history,” says multi“It was a big eye-opener for me,” Jenkins says. “I wantinstrumentalist Hubby Jenkins, who joined the group in 2011. ed to learn more about the music and continue playing it “That’s one of the beautiful things about being in this band—be- and, of course, spread it as much as possible.” ing able to tour around Since its formaand teach people these tion, the group has things and show people taken on a larger goal these songs, and getof educating its auditing people’s initial ence about the history reaction of seeing Afof American music in rican Americans playregards to its Afriing the music as well is can American roots. very important.” “There’s this whole The founding rich art form, and it’s members of Carolina a wholly American art Chocolate Drops— form that was created Rhiannon Giddens, by African Americans Dom Flemons and Justhat seems like we’re tin Robinson—formed kind of detached from the group in 2005 as now,” Jenkins says somewhat of a tribute about the blues and to their musical menearlier forms of music tor, Joe Thompson. in the states. The trio would spend “Just learning The string-based band, Carolina Chocolate Drops, seeks to highlight the Thursday nights at about those sorts of important role that African Americans played in creating this nation’s music more than a century ago and keep that old-time music alive. Thompson’s home in things really opened Durham, N.C., learnthe door for me to look ing about old-time at America and Amerimusic. The black fidcan music in a totally dler and songster, who was in his 80s at the time and has since different way,” Jenkins says. “Just imagine: The banjo came from passed away, played using a short bowing style that he passed on Africa, and it was sort of just a black instrument for almost 100 to the musicians. years or something. Then white people started getting into it, Carolina Chocolate Drops, which performs old-time fiddle and there was the creation of the first wholly American music and banjo-based music, released its label debut album, “Genuine that formed out of that.” Negro Jig,” in 2010 on Nonesuch Records, and the album won The commercial success of Carolina Chocolate Drops a Grammy in 2011 for Best Traditional Folk Album. “Genuine shows that the public wants to learn and is learning about Negro Jig” reached No. 1 on the Billboard Bluegrass Chart and American music’s African American roots. Jenkins believes that No. 2 on the Billboard Heatseekers and Folk Charts. people seem more aware of history now than compared to 10 After several line-up changes, the band now consists of Gid- years ago—perhaps due to both the rise bands such as Carolina dens, Jenkins, cellist Malcolm Parson and multi-instrumentalist Chocolate Drops and academic research on music—especially Rowan Corbett. Each member allows Carolina Chocolate Drops in regards to the banjo or African American contributions to the to keep its flexibility due to their range of musical talents and nation’s music. diverse backgrounds. “We have this wealth of amazing music that shouldn’t be While growing up, Jenkins, a Brooklyn native, listened to forgotten, and it’s just as valid and relevant today as when it a range of music. He was a fan of hip-hop and R&B, and his was created,” Jenkins says. “So that’s part of the main mission family exposed him to everything from Motown to The Talk- is to just spread that music and to keep that music alive and ing Heads to traditional Puerto Rican music. “It was after high to educate people about sort of the history of America through school that I got into playing bass and listening to more mu- the music and teaching people about the relevance that African sic from the ’60s,” Jenkins says. During high school, he played Americans had at the beginning of the creation of the American saxophone and cello. “I heard Bob Dylan for the first time and music forms and what that means in the historical context and Captain Beefheart for the first time—two guys who were really what that means in the musical context. Probably the third (goal) influenced by blues music a lot—and that got me into listening is to just enjoy the music and to let it be a part of you.” to older blues guys.” Carolina Chocolate Drops will perform at 8 p.m. Feb. 12 at Jenkins recalls being astonished when he first saw a Carolina Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.). Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are Chocolate Drops performance before he joined the band. “Wow, $15 in advance and $20 at the door, and are available at Babalu a black person playing old-time music,” he thought to himself. “I Tacos and Tapas, Ticketmaster locations, or by visiting ardenland. was sort of amazed. I’d never seen this before because I grew up net or calling 601-292-7999. Visit

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DIVERSIONS | jfp sports the best in sports over the next seven days

THURSDAY, FEB. 6 Olympics (7-10 p.m., NBC): It’s the first day of the Olympics and the day before the opening ceremonies. You can watch taped events in snowboarding, freestyle skiing and team figure skating. FRIDAY, FEB. 7 Olympics (6:30-10:30 p.m., NBC): Check out the Olympics Opening Ceremony, which could end up being very interesting if NBC doesn’t cut any political protests that might happen. SATURDAY, FEB. 8 College basketball (12:30-3 p.m., CBS): Mississippi State will try to get a signature win in the Rick Ray era by toppling the Kentucky Wildcats in Starkville. SUNDAY, FEB. 9 College basketball (1-3 p.m., CBS Sports Network): Southern Miss looks to get a step closer to the number-one seed in the C-USA Men’s Basketball Tournament with a win at home against Charlotte.

MONDAY, FEB. 10 Olympics (4-6 p.m., NBCSN): This week’s hockey fix features the USA women against Switzerland. TUESDAY, FEB. 11 College basketball (8-10 p.m., ESPN U): Ole Miss needs wins to get the NCAA Tournament Selection Committee’s attention, but must avoid a road upset against Alabama. WEDNESDAY, FEB. 12 College basketball (8-10 p.m. FSN): Mississippi State has improved a lot under in year two under Rick Ray, and beating middle-of-the-pack SEC teams like Georgia could help prove that. I bet Disney was jumping for joy when the Jamaicans reached the Olympics again in bobsledding. Now, the Mouse company can dust off that “Cool Runnings 2” script and cast the children of the first movie’s stars. Follow Bryan Flynn at, @jfpsports and at

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to be,” he told me at the time. “Early for some and later for others.” Speaking of great athletes, the Winter Olympics start this week. It will be a time to watch athletes try to reach the mountaintop of their sport after a lifetime of work. It will also be a time for most of the world to bring attention to Russia’s stance on homosexuality. But don’t look for the athletes to make political statements while competing or on the medal stand. The International Olympic Committee frowns upon such statements and normally deals harsh punishments to athletes who make them. One of the most famous statements was at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City. U.S. sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos were expelled after coming to the medal ceremony shoeless and raising a fist while bowing their heads. So look to social media—athletes are unlikely to make a statement on the field or at the medal stand, but nothing bars them from expressing themselves during press conferences. Follow Bryan @jfpsports on Twitter.


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t took way too long, but it finally happened. Southern Miss and Oakland Raider punter Ray Guy is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Guy becomes the first punter ever elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He joins Jan Stenerud as the only kickers in Canton, Ohio. During his time in the NFL, Guy turned punting into a weapon and added the word “hang time” to the American sports lexicon. As a member of the Oakland Raiders, Guy played in all 207 games in his 14-year NFL career. He was a member of three Raiders squads that won the Super Bowls (XI, XV and XVIII). Guy was the first punter ever drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft. He was a seven-time Pro-Bowler, led the NFL in punting three times and was a member of the NFL’s 75th Anniversary team. The award for best college punter is named after Guy. In 2011, Guy talked to me for an article in this paper, and I could tell it really meant a lot to him to enter the Hall of Fame. “If it’s meant to be, it’s meant


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I hope the Jamaican bobsled team is mic’d up during their runs, and that one of them at some point says: “Feel the rhythm! Feel the rhyme! Get on up, its bobsled time. Cool runnings!”



February 5 - 11, 2014




















   0ARENT´S#ONFERENCE FOR#HILDRENWITH $ISABILITIES Mississippiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 6th Parent Conference will be held February 13-14, 2014, at the Jackson Convention Center, located at 105 East Pascagoula Street in Jackson, MS.

0RESENTATIONSWILLINCLUDE â&#x20AC;˘ Identifying Assistive Technology â&#x20AC;˘ Preparing for Third Grade Reading Gateway â&#x20AC;˘ Positive Behavior Interventions & Supports (PBIS) â&#x20AC;˘ Understanding Section 504 â&#x20AC;˘ Encouraging Parent Involvement in the Transition Process â&#x20AC;˘ Whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Involved in Evaluation â&#x20AC;˘ Everything You Need to Know Before Your Child Turns Three Years Old Sponsored by the Mississippi Department of Education, Office of Special Education and the Mississippi Parent Training and Information Center (MSPTI), the conference promises to be educational, enlightening, and informative for all attendees. The cost to attend is $25 per person.

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February 5 - 11, 2014

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v12n22 - The Love Issue  
v12n22 - The Love Issue  

Mississippi Rolling Toward Medical Marijuana? p10 The Four Mules of Clinton: Art at the Cedars p30 Old sound, new Faces: The Carolina Chocol...