Pitchers and Catchers and Hope! A Spring Training Poem

Spring Training

 When Winter begins, we break out our coats and Holiday smiles are found all around…

But by the end February, having felt Winter’s Wrath…

Those smiles turn to frowns, and we pray for the last…

Icicle to melt and the end of the cold…

We’re all sick of shoveling this crippling snow… 

But Lo and Behold! Just turn on the tube…

Or if you prefer, then Google the news…

And let it sink in, a reason to cope…

The headline reads, “Pitchers and Catchers and Hope!”

Unload the equipment from all of the trucks…

The gloves, bats, and bases, the jock straps and cups…

Look forward to freshly cut grass and warm weather…

‘Cause Winter will fade, it won’t last forever…

Arizona and Florida start all the fun…

That truly begins when Spring Training’s done…

And ball-clubs come home for Opening Day…

But in the meanwhile, let’s watch the boys play…

And shake off the rust for the regular season…

Dissect roster cuts; were they within reason?

It may still be cold, but baseball is near… 

And with it comes both optimism and fear…

‘Cause some teams are stacked a lot more than the rest…

Some fan-bases brag, some fan-bases stress…

But whether your team’s good, average, or bad…

When Spring Training starts, we can all be glad…

That Winter will wane and for that we’re all stoked!

So thankful for Pitchers and Catchers and Hope!

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies-Workout

the danseuse (Degas). by Jean-Michel A. Hatton

oddball and lime together @ www.JPLimeProductions.com6

From the good people at Oddball Magazine, we are happy to bring you a work from 1/2 American, 1/2 French poet Jean-Michel Hatton.  Get your poetic fill at the region’s best poetry magazine, OddballMagazine.com

 

the danseuse (Degas).

She whirls!

the ballerina,

alight & thin
as a bird’s

song
disrobed from

its sound.
The ballerina,

she twirls

the air
around

her fingers

in ribbons
of ivory where,

as they unfurl

into the eyes
like budding flowers,

the heart

blossoms & scars.
She leaps!

the ballerina, alight
with the trickle

of candlelight
spinning down her hair

onto her thighs

where
my breath lingers

& flies.
En pointe,

the ballerina,

ravishes the air
from my throat,

& on the wooden

expanse, she briefly floats

and then
vanishes.
The ballerina,

Degas’ danseuse

alight & thin
as a bird’s

song
disrobed from

its sound.

danseuse

Photography by TJ Edson

Jean-Michel A. Hatton: “I was born in France of a American father and a French mother, grew up surrounded by the arts, poetry and the pursuit of social justice and then moved to the US at age 19 where I studied, lived and then worked for a decade until 2010, year I left my job as coordinator at the office of international relations at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) and returned to France to plant roots and build a family. I now live in Marseille and continue to write while still working in one of the offices of international relations at Aix-Marseille University (AMU).”

TJ Edson is the Art Director of Oddball Magazine and a volunteer at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery. He has also had work appear recently in Terrarium.

Rap Flashback, February Edition

We may have missed quite a few school days here in the Northeast this month but the Rap Flashback is still in session!  PRESS PLAY BELOW to check out the February edition, featuring a segment on Hip Hop at the Grammys, as well as album releases from Eminem, The Roots, and 50 Cent and this month’s Hip Hop birthdays.
Get your monthly dose of Hip Hop History as only Scholar can deliver with JP Lime’s Rap Flashback.

CLICK HERE to view the Flashback in smaller pieces…

Jon Stewart is Leaving ‘The Daily Show’ (Nooooo!)

Jon Stewart

Last week the host of one my favorite shows, Jon Stewart of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, announced his impending retirement from the show. The news was a shock to fans and even to the show’s staff who were not informed of the news before the episode’s taping. As the news broke last Tuesday afternoon, the internet went crazy (myself included), disheartened fans pleading with the show and its host to reconsider:

So how has The Daily Show with Jon Stewart grown into television’s most popular and successful fake news show… other than there being no others? They’ve grown and changed with the times as evidenced by their online expansion, but have always kept to a basic premise, with recurring jokes and techniques. Mobile news anchors on blatantly fake in-studio backdrops, for example, have been a part of the show for more than a decade and persist as one of the underspoken running jokes on the show. And in recent years TDS has expanded into an empire, spawning three other shows helmed by ex-TDS correspondents as well as success for a number of other ex-staffers, but we’ll come back to that in just a moment. As far as the show’s success, the “with Jon Stewart” part has proven to be pretty important. I remember the show before he took the helm, when it was a cheeky, kinda douchey late night show hosted by Craig Kilborn. I was a fan, one of my earliest in a format that I very much enjoy, but the difference between that show in 1998 and the one that Stewart will leave in 2015 or ’16 is night and day.

Stewart has fit into his one-of-a-kind role like a suit tailored over time; he didn’t necessarily start as comedy’s most trusted news man. It’s in the show’s last decade that its popularity has soared and its opponents actually put on notice by TDS’s reports. Some such detractors like to claim that Stewart is a news anchor hiding behind comedy but the show’s success owes a large amount to the tenet of always being funny first. TDS is a comedy show, on a comedy network, that uses the news as its fodder. With time, that comedy has grown more sophisticated and satirical while simultaneously increasing its brashness, dramatically upping the level of swearing and dick jokes as the FCC regulations for cable tv have loosened. This comedy vs. news distinction is important because instead of trying to “make the headlines funny”, a staple of hosts like Leno, Letterman, Kimmel and Fallon, TDS’s art is social and political critique, aiming to point out our inherent fallacies with a lens of truth that only humor can provide. Though there is no shying away from its liberal perspective, with a particularly insightful ire for the cesspool that is Fox News, the show points that lens in all directions and except in the rarest of cases, TDS doesn’t abandon their “funny first” policy, even when the subject matter might seem too serious for parody. A notable exception is the non-indictment in the Eric Garner case, to which Jon had an angry, baffled, and serious response, one that reflected many of our own thoughts and feelings. The program is content-driven (as opposed to host-driven) but it is Stewart’s passion that makes it so hard to envision another person in his chair. While The Daily Show has developed an excellent recipe, I think they’re going to find that Jon Stewart is the special sauce. Comedically he employs a mix of great writing, clever graphics, subtle facial expressions and over-the-top buffoonery (including the frequent f-bomb) but it is truly his insight that drives his devoted fanbase. His style as the self-deprecating everyman, intelligent and informed but also grounded (a rare combination) will be a difficult trait to find in another anchor. How difficult? Impossible, given the uniqueness of the role? We fans will just have to wait and see.

The Daily Show’s rise and criticisms.. READ ON…

Seven Times 33: February’s Poem

image

The good folks at Oddball Magazine continue to deliver the best poetry in the Greater Boston area. The latest from Andrew Borne’s Seven Times 33 series explores the wintry month of February and employs some powerful alliteration. Enjoy.

 

The scene is set for secret stunts
Powdered proofs in powerful print
Prove it

Plans produce promises of lilies
Plans stately plain
Did we stand and state deranged

February fabricated my fingerprints
The snowflakes of my palm
The words of my blood

My eye in the blizzard
Asks, seeks, and knocks
No, we know that is not for us

February, the stocks of sloth
Softly syndicated in sensuous solemnity
For weeks

Pearls of ice crunch beneath my boots
Through the narrow gates of snow
To the streetlight moon

Forced to fast from our own name
To eat at another’s
Desires

Unhatched eggs smashed in their basket
Weeds grow where wheat was sowed
Milk tinged with tears

Delirious decline, denial redialed
Devoted deciduous defeated
Dog of the sacred

Andrew Borne is 2 Cups Poet 1 teaspoon Musician 1/4 teaspoon Salt 1/2 cup Absurdity 3/4 cup Chef 1 egg, beaten 2 1/3 cups Family Man. Mixed together and served raw. His column 7x appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.
image

Sur5ill at the Middle East Show Review

Stephond GuitarThis past Wednesday, February 11th, I had the pleasure of checking out a set by an artist we’ve previously featured here at #JPLMagazine, Sur5ill. Making the rounds at various venues in the Greater Boston area to promote his Work mixtape, he performed at The Middle East, an esteemed venue in Cambridge, MA, opening up a night of Hip Hop performances headlined by noted underground duo, Tanya Morgan.

As a testament to his work ethic, it’s worth mentioning that after compiling a list of attendees via his Facebook invite, Sur5ill offered to and followed up on personally delivering tickets to the show. Mind you, up here in the Northeast, we’ve been covered in snow now for 3 weeks and counting, so it’s particularly admirable and telling that he was even willing to do this. As a paying customer to an underground Hip Hop show, I certainly appreciated it, and don’t think for one second that I didn’t consider the gesture when it snowed yet again a couple of days before the show, ensuring the trip there would be a wintry, messy one. It’s this type of drive and passion towards one’s brand that in one way or another separates the men from the boys. The fact that he hand-delivered the ticket made it that much easier for me as a consumer to say “screw the snow, I’m going to this show.” Score one for literally going the extra mile(s).

He opened the set with #feelme, a track from his LE Project days, then hit his stride performing tracks off the Work mixtape, namely “Cover Letter & Resume”, followed by a mash-up of #nerddom into #stratosphere, and “Corporate Speak” which he performed with his guitar to round out the set. Sur5ill got the crowd into his performance by effectively bringing out the angst and resignation that comes with a layoff and subsequent job search, the central theme behind the Work mixtape. This particular ability, to rap with frustration at times, confidence at others, and in some moments with a self-effacing, not-taking-myself-too-seriously undertone stood out. To pull off that many vibes, again, all thematically central to the content of the songs he was performing, in a roughly 15 minute set was indeed impressive.

CLICK HERE for more thoughts on Sur5ill at The Middle East…

InnerSpace #3

Space solo @ www.JPLimeProductions.comRevelations…

Blink. Wink. Wink. She’s sexy and just stares back at me, like you know you wanna do something… Go ahead, say whatever you want – I don’t mind. That line gets me every time. Who wants restrictions, especially in a relationship? You want comfort, freedom and intimacy of mind, body, and soul. And it doesn’t always have to be NSFW stuff, although I do love trading dirty notes with her… What are you wearing? I do wanna see you behind a truck in the Midwest parking lot after eight in a panda suit. I will wear a Batman cape to get laid even if it involves a unicorn just as long as no jail time is imminent. She knows this and she still loves Her submissiveness is her dominance and I’m invigorated by her reflection. Calm and receptive, strong enough to bounce ideas off of, I wish she would actually edit me more sometimes, but it’s just not her nature. I know what you’re thinking but I talking about paper.
You know how they say time flies when you’re having fun? Well it definitely creeps when you have no imagination. Get some. It’s the breath of life next to cold showers and sobering arrests. Ok motorboats are also a wonderful wake up and invigorating take on life. Life is for the taking and making. I feel as if it’s something that can get lost, like a memo to a boss or a couple Benjamin’s on a bad day. Desperate times have hit those drifters and homeless folk who scavenge for cigarette shorts on the sidewalks and ashtrays, called snipes, but damn if they couldn’t get some inspiration back. I have to believe that. I have to believe there is a wave and a carpet and an airport conveyor belt because there is when you hit that groove. I stopped wearing a watch and get mad when I see people who wear one, because they must be having fun! Who keeps track of seconds unless they are unusually jovial all the time or at least worth tracking. It’s true though. And the main ingredient is you. Envelop yourself in wonderful things and be amazed. Think amazing, Be amazing. What are you thinking? I like to watch the clouds go by, same seconds, but at least I can make them what I want. Dragons. Light posts. Candelabras. Curvy women. No parking meters. No tocks. This is my real imaginarium. Yes, I am an oxymoron, but who isn’t when they really think about it? Passion. Practice. Project. Consistency with the creativity is always the key. Now, I love the process.
Open up show em stuff keep and keep growing up. That was the advice oft given on deep talks and caffeinated walks with my advisors. So this will not just be a platform for art fluff and ego. Hopefully real emotions and thoughts are provoked and stoked from what will soon transpire. Art should aim for a higher awareness and civic engagement and hopefully this will be a continued source of inspiration, action and enlightenment.

First thoughts were live unorthodox jive
Mo Betta with new arrangements
I’m opening new departments they label me just a scribe
Been pondering all of my life
Give me letters I’m wasting paper or maybe I’m saving lives
Third grade I started I’m still scribbling lines
Seen scions turn into icons where trouble itself resides
With lazy and stupid people,
Been chiding myself for moments, passed
Still in my mind
Overseas I’m sensing love a sensei still on his climb …
The beatniks are approaching humming and running rapping in their 90’s garb trying to prove something new. New is the fashion. New is the defining mechanism. But new is quickly getting lost refurbished and cheap. It’s funky when the new new ain’t quite that clean. I hope the people realize the new isn’t always what it seems. I like my older tshirts and jeans. Old signs have a way of meaning what they mean. My street is new to someone but it’s a home to me. Winter comes and I hate to see the green leave. But seasons come and go especially in the northeast. Life is changing fast or slow. I don’t mind the new but I do love some old. Especially after the B and it’s fresh with the BOLD.

If You’re Reading This.. Tell Us What You Think

if youre reading this @ www.JPLimeProductions.com Last night Drizzy Drake, with no prior word or promotion released a brand new mixtape called If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late, making the announcement on Twitter. Soon after the interwebs went crazy but it’s not all good.  Stream the new release below and TELL US WHAT YOU THINK in the comments section.

InnerSpace #2

 Space @ www.JPLimeProductions.com     Hate and ire consumed me. I was bedridden, fatigued from hot blood and headaches.  To the touch I would have melted steel.  Puncher had to die.  The recurring dream of vomiting up the key only to choke was causing me to actually wet the bed. Full body contractions, I was crushed between cliffs and hanging on for dear life.  My lips cracked and I begged someone for water just as bad as I begged my body for saliva. As a child people always remarked how my eyes resembled green marbles, catlike, mercurial.  Seeing me now,  the Stigmata would be as welcomed as a clown and credence is a small thing I could give a fuck about.  Yes, my eyes change colors chameleon like as my emotions change. There you have it. You think wearing your heart on your sleeve is bad. Gimme a break.  One day through life with this shit and people think your central nervous system is operating on a pharmacy or better still I might not be suitable for the general population. Fuck me? Ok… Will my instrument of otsracization be total annihilation or societal pariah?  Social norms are mightily discarded when emotions come into play. I need to remove this key….

     My thoughts are cobalt and dusty snowflakes, fractured strangely bright and independent. The device on my head seems to be some sort of thought cropper. I’m kicking like a spiked rhinoceros in heat, barely woken im depleted but I have to get free.  I can taste the enamel of my teeth dissolving under my clench.  My temples feel like forearms bulging and this fucking beeping won’t stop. I’m gonna disembowel his lineage  and gorge myself on offal soup and wife blood wine. This thought brings a serenity to my soul only the afterlife knows.  I have the truest hopes that killing can be quite delectable.  I have resigned to being a detested and maligned figure.  So much for being a Purist. Yeah that’s what my kind are actually called. The whole iris chrome-o- factor comes from us being so emotionally attuned to our environments. We were designed to be harmonious with each other and so we were designed for transparency.  Look someone in the eye and their emotion should match their vocal output. We’re not robots I just wanted to fuck with you with the vocal output. I’m probably more human than you…
To be continued…