IT was an exquisite comfort to gaze at the building occupied by Asian Journal Publications, Inc. – upright and permanent, yawning with the rest, in a block of prime real estate on Brand Boulevard in Glendale Boulevard.
Somewhere in the heart of the mammoth structure, with a luxurious parking space, are men and women who chronicle the daily whirlwind of the news as they ferret out the real stories, bearing the torch of truth into the darkness of ignorance.
The little big magazine inside a broadsheet: This may not be the right words, but it has a faintly anachronistic resonance because the mood, the tone, and literary coloration were intended as a sanctuary away from one’s thoughts.
Today, magazine reading is a part of our lives, one of the predictable pleasures. The MDWK Magazine inside the LA Midweek edition was conceived to reflect the timeless values of what it means to be wholesome. Our Big Bosses, Mrs. O and Boss RLO deeply care for a beautifully produced paper, and who with their own hands turned out a pleasing, sewn folio. While the contents of MDWK are magazine stories, they are at the same time art objects of high dedication with an implied contract with the readers to provide a general interest magazine, whose goal is to effect change and bring out voices. It was a collective desire for organized unity, a wider culture of acceptance, improved civic and social influences; all these though, may not seem significant, but when you add all the pebbles, it is a boulder.
The profiles we have written though, as we look at people and their thoughts are not designed to unearth previously unknown facts or statements, but our intention is to make a different point in the life of each of them, as it lived and demonstrated one overriding human quality, be it virtue or achievement. We won’t claim that talent was born here, but it could and usually flowers here. When the Gods of creativity were with our intrepid reporters, they could be extravagantly ebullient and could make a simple coverage sing like a Russian novel… not discounting the fact that news coverage here in Los Angeles is relatively tame…exclamation point!
The fluid collaboration of our formidable pool of photographers, including Mr. Andy Tecson and Ding Carreon, emphasizes the fact that while print reporters work side by side with press photographers, their differences are deeper in rhetorics, skin shade or liver sports; you read and weep, but a picture is worth a thousand words, going beyond boundaries as their craft rolls up graphic details in me coherent whole. The camera is more vicious than the pen—it can turn blood into a stone when it ignores conventions.
As the terminal screen lights up, our editor, Christina Oriel, leans over her keyboard and as news items go through the editorial process, leads are changed, paragraphs are moved around to give the stories more substantial impact.
In every story we file goes the dream of becoming good reporters, of doing good with their lives, of changing the world, or at least small corners of it. They imagine that a hundred years from now, their stories and photographs would be remembered with the true pictures of how men and women at the AJP, Inc. thought, felt and reacted in response to circumstances prevailing at their time.
Today we’re more aware that all tenets of media are circling the wagon, each vulnerable to falling circulation, downslide advertising, ageing demographics. Yet, we’re undaunted.
In this City of Angeles where there are millions of peoples’ race and creed, when you wake up on any given day, much of the news of these people are unhappy–corporate greed, murders and abusive cops, elder people gyped and dried up to their last cents and just gaze into a police blotter.
But in this callous world, ever constant, our sturdy Publisher and Chairman of the Board, Boss RLO, continues to surprise, delight, instruct because he is good at what he does and says. Big time elegant!