Within 45 minutes on Tuesday, April 20, Derek Chauvin was convicted of the murder of George Floyd, and 700 miles away, a police officer killed a 15 year old named Ma’Khia Bryant.

Just a few weeks ago we celebrated the holiday of Passover, which tells the story of the ancient Jewish peoples’ escape from Egypt and enslavement. It’s the story of exodus, and it’s a story that in my home changes each year to reflect the current forms of oppression we all face, and surely, some face more than others.

Among other prayers, we sing Dayenu. Dayenu translates to “it…

Kehlani’s coming out is a little bit of magic for this Friday of the pandemic. A Friday of losses. A Friday of many Fridays in a year of nameless days. At 25, the artist, activist and mom has also let us know that she’s a lesbian.

In their coming out (such a crude term, I feel), Kehlani said that they were lucky to have gone many years “under the radar” as “straight passing.”

I know what they mean by this. They means that people who ‘look straight’ (read: cisnormative) are less likely to face retaliation in their daily personal and…

Ever so slowly, the people in my life are getting vaccinated. The state of California has set a reopening date of June 15, after which we’ll be able to eat indoors, frolic, and do all of the other things we’ve missed while inside.

Of what I’ve missed from my pre-pandemic, friendship tops the list. Ironically, I’m finding within myself growing twinges of fear at the premise of socializing. One year ago, socializing threatened illness, or death. …

Sometimes things are written, edited, and published. Photo by Dan Counsell on Unsplash

A jumble of similar sounding words with facsimilic tones. Their last days are today, April 7. With their leavings are the dissolution of what they built. How fitting that on the near-anniversary of the pandemic’s beginning in the U.S., after which newsrooms did what they do in times of economic crisis. Layoffs. Cuts to freelance budgets. Email appeals to subscribers. The ending of Medium publications, precipitated by a violent affront to the workers’ unionizing effort, is possibly the only consistent part of media: its endings.

So one year after the pandemic’s rooting in the U.S. (and our government’s dedication to…

Photo by BRUNO EMMANUELLE on Unsplash

Demi Lovato: Dancing with the Devil appeared on YouTube approximately 30 months after its motivating subject matter overdosed on what was likely fentanyl. The documentary traces what really happened the weeks leading up to July 23, 2018, and what the public didn’t know about 25-year-old Demi Lovato’s subsequent hospitalization. Lovato’s close circle — mother and stepfather, two sisters, manager, choreographer, attending doctor, and two close friends — each tell a different part of the story from their perspective. Lovato’s mom, Dianna De La Garza offers insight about Demi’s upbringing and where she might have learned to cope with substance. Dallas…

Photo by Chase Eggenberger on Unsplash

From The New York Times after the murder of eight people in Atlanta, Georgia.

“Whatever the motivation here,” [Biden] said, “I know Asian-Americans are very concerned. Because as you know I have been speaking about the brutality against Asian-Americans for the last couple months, and I think it’s very, very troubling. But I am making no connection at this moment to the motivation of the killer. I’m waiting for an answer from — as the investigation proceeds — from the F.B.I. and from the Justice Department. And I’ll have more to say when the investigation is completed.”

Whatever the motivation…

Photo by sanjoy saha on Unsplash

After breakups, normal people hand their phones over to their friends. Unfollow on social media. Ignore former lovers at parties. In Bachelorland, the ex’s are pushed through a spin cycle of intimate public testimony, the two performing a posthumous investigation of their love. In prior seasons, this contrivance of truncated, albeit ‘real’, love has felt unimaginative, with boy and girl trading lovely epithets about their shared romance. The meeting between Rachael Kirkconnell and Matt James — our most recent eligible bachelor — did not feel like this. The relationship ended just a few months after it really began, encouraged toward…

A well-intentioned social media uproar after Sarah Everard’s murder shows the impossibility of mitigating misogyny

Side view of a young man and woman crossing the street at night.
Side view of a young man and woman crossing the street at night.
Photo: Thomas Northcut/DigitalVision/Getty Images

“I live less than five minutes from where Sarah Everard went missing. Everyone is on high alert,” an apparently feminist man named Stuart Edwards tweeted on March 9. It had been six days since a London Metropolitan Police officer kidnapped 33-year-old marketing executive Sarah Everard while she was walking home, and one day before her remains were discovered in Kent. “Aside from giving as much space as possible on quieter streets and keeping face visible,” Edwards continued, “is there anything else men can reasonably do to reduce the anxiety/spook factor?” …

Photo by Corleone Brown on Unsplash

Ms. June Jordan begins by throwing her hands up: I didn’t know and nobody told me and what / could I do or say, anyway? And she ends with the title of her poem, ‘Apologies to All the People in Lebanon’: I’m sorry. / I really am sorry. In between is the apology itself, details of the 1982 Lebanon war. She repeats the word ‘you’ and ‘your’ 22 times, speaking directly to expelled Palestinians. So too, does she speak directly to her Americanness, implicated in the war.

Today, quarantined American Jews celebrate the holiday of Purim, a kind of Jewish…

American writer Fran Lebowitz, image by Christopher Macsurak

Pretend It’s a City consists of roughly four different settings: Fran Lebowitz walking through Manhattan, Fran Lebowitz talking to Martin Scorsese in the dimly lit Player’s Club, Fran Lebowitz scuttling around Robert Moses’s miniature model of New York City, and Fran Lebowitz pontificating to audiences of New Yorkers. Between these scenes Lebowitz herself appears interchangeable, wearing the same, or similar, outfit of a button down shirt, blazer, blue jeans, and sturdy looking shoes. These scenes follow a call-and-response format: Lebowitz offers a wry, dry opinion and the listener — Scorsese, a famous counterpart, or a faceless audience member — laughs.

Ray Levy Uyeda

Bay Area based writer and poet. Retweets: @raylevyuyeda

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