– Page 2 – writer & journalist, essays & latest updates

California Ethnic Media Awards-WINNER!

June 7th, 2021

Look Ma!! I made it to the finalists—actually, I am a winner! So utterly grateful to have been awarded this Special Commendation by a jury of distinguished academia and veteran journalists. Thank you to Ethnic Media Services and California Black Media. I am honored. And thank you eternally to Terria Smith, editor extraordinaire at News From Native California. And thank you to Marina Drummer, champion of civil liberties, formerly of the Advocates for Indigenous California Language Survival and to Carly Tex, language whisperer.

The path of truth is not linear and the pen serves as a razor sharp machete for hacking the overgrown branches of falsehoods out of the way. May we all continue to write with courage and uphold the human race to accountability when the need rises.

Blessings and peace to all the Indigenous children, women, and men who suffered tremendous trauma and cruelty from forced removal from their families and punishment for speaking their Native language and practicing their tribal culture. And to all the Japanese Americans who were imprisoned at the concentration camps ironically built on tribal lands which, includes Manzanar National Historic Site in Owens Valley.


WOW! We made it to 2021!

March 23rd, 2021

Hallelujah! Praise the Lord. Pass the butter.

Masks are still on, people are running for the COVID-19 vaccines. Moderna or Pfizer? That is the hot question right now…a new contender is on the horizon: Johnson & Johnson. One shot stop. Prefer that because I HATE needles. Won’t even watch it on movies and they love filming close-ups of it going into skin. WHY?

Where can I go so that I can stand in yet another long, long, long line? Trader Joe’s line is longer than the DMV’s.

Thinking about embracing my wisdom highlights (grey hair)—just thinking about it….don’t go all crazy on me. Ain’t ready to be a grandma!!

I have lost all three of my sweet, sweet pets in the last two years. The last to walk on the Rainbow Bridge was Oliver (Ollie) at 13 years old with diabetes – Friday the 13, 2020. Rest in peace, my furry friend. xoxoxo

Stay safe out there in the big wide world friends! To quote Diana Ross: “Reach out and touch someone’s hand”—-from six feet apart if you can. Love, j

An Ode to Shasta Daisy

November 3rd, 2020
Three months old

My valiant shield maiden,

I never feared the darkness with you by my side

Your throaty 200 lb. growl threatened most demons and kept them at bay

Manners so proper, a true lady

you were something to behold.

For 12 years, you hid your business so

that I was spared with a bag in my hand.

Your spirit and muzzle so gentle and kind,

That the parakeet lived long after his escapade

in your mouth.

The butterflies were spared

because you only chased shadows.

But the murder of crows that descended

Soon discovered a caramel tornado with a powerful yell

Never mind you were only defending an empty dinner bowl.

The swaying palm fronds, the kites in the sky, the wind

and the hot air balloons—all shared your deep dislike.

How funny you were when it came to costumes, parties, and people,

Tactile was never close enough and your kisses were atypical. The cat licked me more than you.

How psychic you were when you were a pup,

to come my lap and place your oversized paw on my knee.

You made me look into your guileless brown eyes to see your quiet plea and rescue you from the cacophony.

How psychic you were as a maven to know when we suffered, so respectful you were…

I miss your intuitive, intelligent companionship,

your unconditional love

and your big brave heart.

See you at the gates of heaven, my canine love.


Six months old
A young juvenile

Shield maiden


Shasta Daisy Ferris 

October 31, 2020

Happy Birthday, Lorna!

July 12th, 2020

July 12, 1941  ~ September 14, 2018

Dear Mom,

I hope where-ever you are, you’re in your favorite color, red, dancing to your favorite music: reggae. May your feet be young and your heart care-free. May you be light as a feather with the weight of pure gold and sparkling diamonds on your wrists, fingers and around your neck.

Afterward, your favorite dish: fresh jasmine rice (2 x a day)and a big, juicy steak. Salted, peppered, sliced red, ripe tomatoes on the side and of course, vinegar with chopped garlic soaking in it. You always loved a cold mango, over the sink with juice running down your chin and the flesh in your teeth. I will never forget your primal enjoyment at so simple a pleasure that it never made it to a plate. When everyone ordered chocolate, you preferred vanilla.

You were always the first one to say yes to Scrabble and had absolutely no strategy. You just wanted to keep the game moving which sometimes would take several hours.  Card games were your weakness and you would spend your last cent on those damn machines…you were ruthless when you would take Dad’s last five when you secretly had a Benjamin hidden behind your mother’s photo in your wallet. I can’t remember if I ratted you out or maybe, John…or Laura.

You would rather play solitaire or shop than watch baseball. I’m glad we returned to the Philippines together to visit our ancestral lands. It’s a memory I revisit when I think of a magical place. You taught me never to fear anger. And what happens when you close your broken-heart to forgiveness. You taught me which road is the higher road.

I wish you all the free will in heaven. I wish you all my love. I wish that I had loved you more.

I miss you. 

Happy, happy, happy Birthday! See you on the other side of that thin white veil ~ not ready yet, but someday.

Eternally yours, Jeanne xoxo


Parallel Worlds – A “Zoom” Event

June 19th, 2020

A collaboration between the Advocates for Indigenous California Language Survival, the Owens Valley Paiute Shoshone Cultural Center and the Manzanar National Historic Site, made possible by a grant from the California Civil Liberties Education Program administered by the California State Library.


PLEASE JOIN US!! Blessings, J

Monarchs in the Garden

May 28th, 2020

Hope and renewal is visiting me in the garden. A reminder from nature that life is transformation and time is a season that continues despite human intervention.

With hope and faith, I look forward to the future through the lens of nature.

Be healthy,  be kind to one another, and fly above the discord. xo, j

COVID 19 Pandemic Lockdown

March 24th, 2020

IT’S HERE! One of the four horseman from the Revelations.

Dear Lord,

Help us.



Happy Birthday Dad!

March 5th, 2020

Robert Joseph (mustache)

March 5, 1936 ~ July 25, 2018

You loved the standards sung by Frank Sinatra. Your favorite song was “My Way”. I can still remember waking up to Peggy Lee singing, “Is That All There Is?” And Petula Clark. And Neil Diamond. I think you wanted to be Neil Diamond. Those “Hot August Nights” were replayed over and over. You will be happy to know that John is restoring your beloved stereo cabinet from Okinawa.

Escarole was one of your favorite vegetables. Chocolate was a weakness. Traveling the high seas was a passion. Highly intelligent, kind, and sentimental, you gave 33 years to Howard Hughes. I grew up listening to Vin Scully, the Dodgers, and Farmer John bacon commercials on the radio because you were such a loyal fan when they were a Brooklyn team. You adored your mother and your siblings.

Our funniest memory is when my husband asked for your blessing to propose to me as you were walking together. You asked him, “Are you sure?” His answer to you was, “Is there something I should know, Bob?” We still laugh about it. You taught Tom about Bushmills single malt whiskey and you both drank until the wee small hours. You shared your Churchill cigars with him generously as well. You taught us how to play Hand & Foot and was very strict about the rules. I have never won. You hated Scrabble and would rather watch a crappy movie.

Basil the man to your right—was one of your best friends, as was Uncle Paul the man to your left—your younger brother, and your only son, John is to your far right. Your beloved and youngest. I am not at all jealous. Really.

I remember this fun day after the races at Del Mar so clearly. This was an Italian restaurant at the time–one of its many incarnations now inhabited by a real estate company. Like the mensch you were, you picked up the check and wouldn’t take a single dollar from anyone. Those were the days. Happy times.

I really miss you. I hope you, mom, Uncle Paul, Grandma Fay, and all of your friends are having a great party up there. Well, whenever you see mom. I’m sure even in heaven, she is probably at the casinos. At least now you won’t have to pick her up.

Say hi to Pop Pop (Big Tom). And put in a good word to the Big Guy to continue watching over all of us. He knows more than ever, how much we need His special guidance. That —and/or a giant cattle prod.



Happy 2020! May your visions be crystal clear.

January 15th, 2020


2020 San Diego International Film Festival Ambassadors with Tonya Mantooth, Executive Creative Director & CEO, Stephanie Inscoe, Festival Producer & Eva Maria, Festival Manager

Here’s to another stellar year of films with social impact and powerful perspectives. Please join us at the Film Insider Series, Movies at the Bay, and the super fun Film Festival on October 13-16, 2020.

See you on the Red Carpet! Love, j.

Healing and Positive Good Vibrations to all!

November 27th, 2019