Smoking up MARY JANE

In Communication, Griot, News, Self Improvement, TV Shows on February 13, 2015 at 5:24 am

mary-jane-1-ladyI just inhaled Episode 1 of Season 2 [Being Mary Jane]: “People in Glass Houses Shouldn’t throw Fish” and my goodness it has got me high. From 2:00 – 9:00 into the broadcast there was nothing but fire. Literal fire, no bones were being thrown, and could have easily been the softer choice of weapon in the conversation between Mary Jane and her little brother . Shortly after the broadcast began and after a stressed out Mary Jane had thrown Starsky (her goldfish) and his tailored home through the wall sized glass window, we move into the dinner party scene. MJ’s guest list consists of a handful of elite family and friends. By elite I mean “of a certain class” – certainly degreed and all happen to be tan-brown in melanin, though not necessarily African American in race. None of that really matters as much as the content and context of their conversation. Let’s drop in at the 2-minute mark:

MJ: Shhh! I am about to read Walter Mosely’s prose:

“Many of seek to make our own lives better, we succeed often enough when we have America behind us, but even if we make a good living and buy a big house how can our lives be seen as good when so many are starving, suffering, ailing and disinherited?”

Being Mary Jane

Dr. Lisa Hudson: We had a context – our own. Before desegregation we had to do it all, skilled laborers, professionals, entrepreneurs.

Mark Bradley: I’m tired of people making it feel like it was some kind of utopia. There were still lynchings, there were still Jim Crow laws…

[conversation progression – living room]
Paul Patterson, Jr: What about it?
MJ: Bill Cosby was right, we failed ourselves when we gave up on education. We just don’t want to talk about it.
Valerie Warren:I think we’re misusing religion to our own detriment. I mean actively waiting on Jesus to save us.
Dr. Lisa: I am so tired of people attacking the church. The church has been the cornerstone of our surviving success for all of these years. That’s our context.
Kara Lynch: You know what? They’re not thinking about you and that’s the problem with you people. Be black at home and when you step out that door be American and go get your money.
MJ:  Somebody take her drink and her buck and her black business pass.
Kara: Un-Un, don’t even play me like that. You can look at this ba-donky-donk right here and see Africa.
MJ: I see your ganza!
Kara: Black people are not doing all that bad now. Come on, honestly listen. Would you rather be working class in America or in Africa.
(the ladies break out in a spoof chorus)

“America, America, God shed his lies on thee”

Chris Warren: Forget about our context in America. We are America. Everything in this country and I’m not just talking about the simple fact that we built the infrastructure that the country sits on, I’m talking about Jazz – we did that. Hip Hop – we did that. Soul food? Okay, I’ll give them the apple pie, but everything else — we did that. Soul food is actually the only genuine American cuisine.

[conversation progression – living room; Paul Jr., Mary Jane and Valerie are in the house sipping wine looking out onto the patio where the other guests are sitting semi-circle passing an e-pen]
MJ: I wish you would just stop. At least with the pen it looks a little more sophisticated.
Paul: It’s funny Letta, how you have a dinner party to free yourself from the shackled thoughts and you can’t see that what you’re drinking and eating is doing more damage than what their smoking. Sugar is the biggest drug trade going. Investigate that and get it out to the people.
MJ: I need to pour another drink just to deal with what the hell you just said.
Paul: You’ve got problems.

[conversation progression — kitchen island]
MJ: Okay, take our brother for example, he made one mistake – one, one mistake
Chris: One for us is one too many.
Paul: Oh, ok, well look here madam, our father was Advantage Airlines first black CEO, the first Patterson to go to college, the first Patterson to move on the boojie block. I’m talking those are leaps and bounds superman can’t make but as great as father is he still lived back in a day when America was on a come up. What we fail to realize is that America had room to grow back then and when you have room to grow you have a robust economy and anybody with an education and a will can get a piece of the pie. We’re all tapped out now – no new frontiers and while we are having these “dinner parties” hoping that these degrees will help us figure out what oppression has really done to us, everybody else is snatching up what’s left of Americas economy.
Chris: Times up. What’s your point?
Paul: I say we put a group of investors together. Okay? Fund a lobbyist group to legalize marijuana in the state of Georgia, buy up some dispensaries and sit back and count our cash.
MJ: Wow, okay look — Our father achieved everything he had because he wanted it. He wanted more for his family, he wanted more for himself. That’s the same kind of spirit that changed the laws in this country. We used to have a spirit about us and we need that spirit back because we have a brother who also went to Morehouse who baby sits movie trailers for a living. And I can’t enjoy any of this, I can’t stop and smell the roses knowing his ass is sitting out there.
Paul: Well see sis, that says more about you than it does about him.
MJ: Is that you keeping it real?
Paul: Does it not?
MJ: Okay, let me be really, really real.
MJ: I would use your ass as an example but you’re sitting here. Yeah, you sling your penis to every MILF in Virginia Highlands to push off a dime bag.
Paul:  Oh, ok…
MJ: You whack off in your parents house…
Paul: I’m ‘a let you have that one because you’re in front of your peoples, but you might want to…
MJ: You’re going to let me have it because “I’m in front of my peoples,” — how about you let me have it because I’m in my own damn house?
Paul: Huh? Now I see why David doesn’t want you. Now I see why he’s with that white chick.

You gotta know when to hold ’em,
know when to fold ’em,
know when to walk away,
know when to run.

divider blk_south
 That’s when the yolk of a rotten egg appeared on Mary Jane’s face. The pain of losing David to the woman who is carrying his child has really been unbearable for her.  Suddenly her dinner party went from being elite and boojie to real and uncomfortable. I was digging the transference of energy from screen to audience. It was intense.

MJ’s controlling ways have failed to deliver her what she wants the most – David. She has also admitted openly to him that she wishes she were carrying his child, (instead of the white chick). Thing is, Mary was pregnant with David’s child once in the past, but she chose to abort it because she was focused on her career.

The scene transcript clearly shows that MJ should have run away from the entrance ramp of that conversation, but instead she ran straight too it and got smoked! Paul Jr. let her have it and I got high off of the writers relatable hand. It was so strong – I coughed, twice. 🙂


I digested episode 1 and episode 2 did not disappoint.
Who needs seedy verge when there’s that BMJ joint.

I like it quite a lot. Good writing feels better than committing a sin.
I like it because I can relate… I’ve comparable family and friends.

Sure I know people who feel exactly like Mary Jane without stall,
and there’s always a counter conversation boomeranging from a friend like Paul.
I love ’em all.

It’s shows like this that make me listen – life is not all about a chase or explosion,
I’m Qui
Enjoying BET
for bringing life back to the channel and foregoing irrelative corrosion.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: