Growing up in Detroit, Michigan in the 1960s and 1970s, my Uncle Stan called me Les the Best, or sometimes Swee’ Pea (after the character in the Popeye The Sailor Man cartoon). If I wasn’t getting on my mother’s nerves she sometimes called me Sugar Lump; while Dad called me Shawty. Grandma Essie often shook her head at me and said I was too big for my britches. When I showed Uncle Colvin I knew how to do “The Temptation Walk,” he told Aunt Joni (whose nickname was Twink and pronounced Twank) that I sure could cut a rug! Raise cain was something my mother threatened to do in a department store or restaurant if a supervisor or manager had to be summoned; while a five-star compliment on someone’s delicious home-cooking required her to proclaim: “you really put your foot in it!” Grandma Mary Elizabeth always excused herself to go to the bathroom by saying that she was going to see a man about a dog. On the school playground, me and my classmates gave each other five on the black hand side, and taught each other a dance called “The Watergate,” while Stevie Wonder’s “You Haven’t Done Nothin’” played in the background. I had been introduced to the public library early on, and few things rivaled my greedy desire to borrow stacks of books and escape into their worlds built of words. Teachers scolded me for daydreaming or talking too much in class. I decided to become a writer. folklore & literacy is the 21st-century online incarnation of those early seeds. Thanks for stopping by!