Tanya Ballard Brown

Tanya Ballard Brown appears in the following:

People Be Triflin', From 'Bills, Bills, Bills' To The Bible

Sunday, September 28, 2014

In our semi-regular Word Watch feature, we take a look at a word or phrase that's caught our attention, whether for its history, usage, etymology, or just because it has an interesting story.

When I was growing up in N.C., I knew that, along with shiftless and lazy, one ...


How 'Sassy' Came To Mean Something Both Sweet And Sour

Sunday, August 31, 2014

In our semi-regular Word Watch feature, we take a look at a word or phrase that's caught our attention, whether for its history, usage, etymology, or just because it has an interesting story.

I'm sometimes described as "sassy," and when that happens I choose to take it as ...


Michael Jackson, We Barely Knew You

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Just as there are those who seek to drag Mr. Jackson's name through the mud, there are those who insist that he was a saint, an angelic figure to be put on a pedestal. He was neither. Michael Jackson was, like all of us, a complicated human being. -- "Remember ...


Beyonce, Jay Z And Solange Walk Into An Elevator ...

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Our lives are recorded all the time, and what we're seeing behind the curtain makes us wonder whether or not we should be looking back there in the first place.

The most recent example of this is the video of Solange Knowles — Beyonce's younger sister — allegedly attacking ...


The Origin (And Hot Stank) Of The 'Chitlin' Circuit'

Sunday, February 16, 2014

For many people, chitlins (or chitterlings) are a tasty (or, for some, nasty) soul food dish made out of pig intestines. If you can get past what they are (or how badly they stank when cleaned and cooked), then you can shake some hot sauce or sprinkle some cha-cha ...


Hey Hey Hey! Historian Draws Attention To '70s Black Animation Art

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

As a kid growing up during the 1970s and '80s, I would often spend the night at my cousin Chris' house. On Friday nights after my aunt sent us to bed and turned off the light, we would lay in our respective bunk beds whispering to each other — not ...


Dear Internet, It's Christmas. Please Stop Fighting About 'Love Actually'

Friday, December 20, 2013

In the past few weeks, a debate has been raging online over the merits of Love Actually. The British movie, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, follows 10 interwoven stories of love — unrequited, adulterous, pre-adolescent, etc. — and for a ...


The Case For — And Against — Loving 'Love Actually'

Saturday, December 14, 2013

The 10-year anniversary of the movie Love Actually seems to have pulled back a scab for some folks. These past few weeks, a battle over why you should love or hate the film has bubbled up on the Internet, starting with The Atlantic's Chris Orr, in which he declared ...


Why Didn't The Store Just Let Oprah Buy The $38,000 Handbag?

Saturday, August 10, 2013

On the list of things to be outraged about at the moment, I'll admit this isn't at the top: The Swiss tourism office apologized to Oprah on Friday because she wasn't allowed to buy a $38,000 designer handbag while recently shopping in Switzerland. Poor lil' Oprah. *sad face*

It does ...


Awkwardly Awaiting The Zimmerman Trial's Outcome

Friday, July 12, 2013

With the verdict looming in the trial of George Zimmerman, who's charged in the 2012 shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, suddenly speculation has turned to this: the possibility of angry protesters turning to violence if the outcome isn't the one they envisioned.

For more than a year, the ...


Stuff You Might Have Missed In The Paula Deen Brouhaha

Thursday, June 20, 2013

UPDATE 5:15 p.m.: Paula Deen apologizes to Matt Lauer, of NBC's Today show.

UPDATE 4:44 p.m.: "Food Network will not renew Paula Deen's contract when it expires at the end of this month." — Food Network spokeswoman

UPDATE 4:30 p.m.: Paula Deen posted another video ...


If This Cute Cheerios Ad Causes Drama, What Won't?

Saturday, June 01, 2013

On Thursday, blogger Monica Mingo posted about a new Cheerios commercial featuring an interracial family, noting that it was causing a stir and asking readers if it bothered them.

I watched and couldn't understand what about the video might be bothersome. As commenter Roslyn Holcomb wrote: "Cute. Causing ...


Easy Rawlins Is Alive, Or Is He?

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

I've been following Easy Rawlins since reading Devil in a Blue Dress in the '90s. That's a lot of time to give to a character. And as I read Little Green, I realized that I hadn't been following Easy, the character, all these years. In the past I was more ...


American Tribe Fights To Halt Artifact Auction In Paris

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

An auction of sacred Native American artifacts scheduled for Friday in Paris is stirring up controversy on both sides of the Atlantic

Seventy Hopi "visages and headdresses" — some more than 100 years old — will go on the block at the Neret-Minet Tessier & Sarrou auction house, which ...