Inside story profile for The Commercial Appeal
May 31, 2010
To sit across from Mark Yancy, you wouldn’t realize he is in pain. Chances are good, however, that he is.
“I try not to think about it, but I’m in pain every day in some type of way,” he said. “You just get used to it and you deal with it.”
And to sit and talk with him, you might not realize that the 32-year-old is not a medical professional trained in the debilitating effects of sickle cell disease on the human body. Yet having been diagnosed with the disease at 11 months old, Yancy understands it all too clearly.
“Education is paramount,” he said. “There’s not a gizmo or piece of surgical equipment that does wonders for sickle cell, it’s simply having that knowledge of how to effect this disease.” … (read more)
Three feature stories for the Winter 2010 issue of Memphis Crossroads Magazine.
“Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal
Film synopses for the 2009 Indie Memphis Film Festival program
“God’s Architects” by Zachary Godshall
Through the works of five visionary individuals, filmmaker Zachary Godshall tells the story of people’s inspirations. There is Leonard Knight, building the “God is Love Mountain,” a Seussian landscape in the California desert; Shelby Ravellette, a self-professed master mason and Knight Templar; Mississippi preacher H.D. Dennis and his wife, Margaret; Floyd Banks Jr., who builds with bricks, rocks and his own tooth; and the works of sculptor Kenny Hill as presented by Julius Neil … (read more)
“St. Nick” by David Lowery
Two runaway children take refuge in an old clapboard house, their youthful curiosity and mischievousness succumbing to focused movement and the necessity of survival. The story is one not so much of innocence lost as of independence gained as the brother and sister forage and scrape to get by, setting up housekeeping — including building a fort of sheets in the abandoned house — as kids will do to feel safe … (read more)
Read more about Indie Memphis and the 2009 film festival (Oct. 8-15) at indiememphis.com.
“Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal
January 22, 2009
In an effort to save some cash in this economic recession, I’ve recently begun keeping my 2-year-old daughter, Genevieve, at home two days a week instead of sending her to daycare. So far it’s going well.
The time together gives us a chance to bond, to watch “Dora,” to argue over whether a ham-and-cheese sandwich should be cut into rectangles or triangles.
And to nap, while she’s making my sandwich … (read more)
Story for edible Memphis magazine
The essence of tradition can be found as much in smell, taste and muscle memory as it can in any written history. At the age of 13, amid learning of algebra and girls, I was taught my family’s recipe for ravioli.
The Zanone family has been making ravioli from scratch since further back than anyone recalls. However, we know that around the late 1930s, Charles Francis and Rosalie Cerisola Zanone were making the dish for family in their tiny home in north Memphis. They made small batches for special occasions because the work was labor-intensive and refrigeration was poor.
In the late 1960s, my great-grandparents Charlie and Catherine Zanone, along with their daughter and her husband, Jean and Bill Hollahan, opened Zanone’s Restaurant in Frayser, selling ravioli, both hot and frozen, by the pound for a take-out meal …
These are links to pieces I’ve written as a freelance writer.
Team Alley dreams of gold in 2024 – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. August 21, 2008.
Five events my kids would excel in if they were actual Olympic events:
- Sofa jumping
- Spilling things
- Bath procrastination
- Falling down
Downtown on the farm, planting time – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. August 7, 2008.
Even as temperatures hover near triple digits, summer is coming to a close. Not the summer of the Gregorians, mind you, but that of Memphis City Schools.
It’s too hot to think of school, textbooks and uniforms, though, isn’t it? … (read more)
Vacation exhaustion — it’s a great feeling – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. July 24, 2008.
I just returned from a week on lower Alabama’s Gulf Coast with my own family and three others.
Seven adults and 10 children all together … (read more)
Currently, kids’ time on Web is harmless – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. July 10, 2008.
I had a high school teacher in 1988 who implored me to go into something mysteriously called “mass communications,” much as Benjamin Braddock’s trusted adviser made the enigmatic suggestion of “plastics” in “The Graduate” back in 1967 … (read more)
Experience is no match for mind of 5-year-old – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. June 26, 2008.
My great-grandmother, Catherine Zanone, taught many of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren to gamble with a card game called Blitz.
I come from a competitive family, and some of that cutthroat spirit has seeped through the generations to my own children … (read more)
Jules Wade cited as leader – My Profession for The Commercial Appeal. June 25, 2008.
As the modest leader of the Memphis Area Association of Realtors, Jules Wade didn’t even tell his wife about his recent induction into the exclusive Dr. Almon R. “Bud” Smith Association Executives Leadership Society.
“I had to tell her,” said Wade’s longtime friend and president of the MAAR board, John Snyder … (read more)
Guide to being a dad clears on Father’s Day – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. June 12, 2008.
I am giddy with anticipation at the arrival of the most wonderful time of the year.
My calendar, my tingling Daddy Sense and my sense of self-importance in my own house all tell me that Father’s Day is just around the corner.
This Sunday, in fact … (read more)
Family man suited to life of ill-fitting inner spaces – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. May 29, 2008
The other day I was cleaning my daughters’ room and came across the suit I was married in.
Why was this still-stylish wool suit hanging in my daughters’ closet?
Because the six of us live in 1,200 square feet, so I either store it in whatever space is available or I have to wear it whenever I’m in the house … (read more)
The Madison’s Stacey Jackson ‘born to serve’ – My Profession for The Commercial Appeal. May 21, 2008
As concierge for the Madison Hotel in Downtown Memphis, Stacey Jackson has the veritable keys to the city that unlock any requests her guests might have.
Those have included a real Southern watermelon, pet boarding arrangements, a doctor willing to make a house call, nanny services and a priest willing to say Mass after hours for an NBA star.
And you can mark each one of those needs as having been satisfied … (read more)
No tsk-tsk for tots with tats — if temporary – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. May 15, 2008
I arrived home from work the other evening to hear my daughter Somerset say, “I got a tattoo!”
My kids have a penchant for the temporary tattoos — the type found in vending machines, birthday party goody bags and, oddly enough, boxes of Pop-Tarts.
So this wasn’t as frightening as it may one day be … (read more)
Burger joint gets fine-tuned – My Profession for The Commercial Appeal. May 7, 2008
It may be that the cheeseburger you’re eating at Elliott’s Restaurant in Downtown Memphis had its origins in Athens, Greece.
That’s where owner Helario “Harry” Reyna’s father, a Taos Pueblo Indian and member of the U.S. Air Force, wandered into a coffee shop owned by the family of Reyna’s mother to ask for directions … (read more)
Summer vacation big relief for dad – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. May 1, 2008
Is summer vacation here, yet?
As a child, I don’t think I looked for
ward to the end of the school year as much as I do now as the father of four.
Since my wife leaves early, it’s my job during the year to get The Quartet up, fed, dressed, lunches made, kids out the door and to school … (read more)
Building total health: New clinic helps moms, dads, children – My Profession for The Commercial Appeal. April 23, 2008
Dr. Ann Payne-Johnson is, in her words, “the new face of family medicine.”
With childhood obesity, alcohol consumption and tobacco use common in Memphis, she has dedicated her clinic, myM.D. North Family Medicine, to total wellness for the entire family … (read more)
Real kids shrink notions of big family – “Because I Said So” column for The Commercial Appeal. April 17, 2008
My grandparents, Bob and Shirley Fachini, raised seven children, a respectable number by anyone’s standards.
It was the 1950s and ’60s, a much simpler era, I’m told. Families were larger then because this country needed as many citizens as possible to fight communism, go to Saturday movie matinees for a nickel and colonize the moon … (read more)