Senior Year Chat – February 8, 2002
Unity, Jean & Maria Chat
What's up, welcome to this week's Senior Year chat. Our guests are Unity, Jean & Maria. We'll get started in about 5 minutes, so send us your questions now. Also, check out the Senior Year Web site at www.pbs.org/senioryear!
Moderator: OK everyone. Here we go. Thanks for joining us tonight Unity, Jean & Maria!
Unity: What's crackin'?
Maria: what's up!?
Mike: Unity, hows it going? What have you been up to since graduation?
Unity: Oh, doing the school thing, doing the art thing, doing the music thing, being productive!
sabyne: i just wanna say wassup to Unity, Maria, and Jean!! i am very pleased to meet you guys.
Christina: What I want to know is what you all are up to? Are you working, in college? I think that the show is great...I watch it every Friday.
Jean: To the one who watches every friday. I'm working full time and a part time student and painting all the time.
Maria: I am a full time student, "wife" to Jean. And I am working on my photography.
Yemi: Maria, how long have you and Jean been going out.
Maria: Three years and four months. Our anniversary is October 1, 2002.
MrT: You're married????????
Jean: I'm working on it...
Christina: Where are you going to school Unity?
Unity: California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland.
Yemi: How did you get your name, Unity?
Unity: My father didn't know it if I was going to be a boy or a girl but they figured that Unity was a beautiful name, boy or girl.
victoria: Unity, your name is tight! and I just admire the way you think I just finished watching episode 6.
mom: Jean, are you and Maria at home right now?
Jean: No, mom... our DSL is down... We're chillin' at KCET, eatin pizza.
Christina: did you volunteer to do the show or did they approach you to do it?
Maria: We volunteered, but they wanted us.
Jean: They wanted us because we were too controversial.
Sarah: Was it hard for you guys to be totally honest and open all the time, and to really express yourself and your emotions in front of a camera?
Maria: No. they were our friends. It didn't feel like the camera was there.
Yemi: Were they into what you are into--the whole uniting people thing, Unity?
Mike: Unity, I think its cool how you tried to Unite everyone.
Oscar: Unity, the knowledge you dropped was good on the show today.
Yemi: Unity, do you think you made any progress at Fairfax, and were things so bad there that you had to do that?
Unity: There's always progress as long as we keep living by example. Now we have black artists and designers at the school which was established in 2000. I also meet with kids at fairfax High and the Black male's group every now and then.
Unity: I didn't feel like things were so bad that I had to do it. I had a duty to do it as a responsible young black male.
Sarah: Once you guys saw the final shows, was it hard for you to believe that it was you, and that your entire senior year was documented? I can't even begin to imagine what all of this would have been like...
Jean: sarah - at first I didn't think it would effect my everyday life. I wasn't ready to have people recognize me... come up to me and know my life... it's a little invading, but it's cool... no regrets...
Maria: Sarah- Yes, it was difficult at first. There were a few things we wanted to change after. After all you go through ups and downs. You can't always pick and choose your battles.
sabyne: Jean, your art is really good. you've got a lot of talent, are you still continuing your artistry.
Jean: Yes - I continue with my art everyday... painting drawing...
Jean: The inspiration for my art has been lately coming from observing my community... from where I live now, not high school anbymore... East La has been a great source of ideas...
MrT: Jean and Maria, Do you know who this is?
Maria: Hi, Mr. Tritsch. We love you!
MrT: Hi Maria, I love you two, too.
victoria: unity, so what changes have you seen so far with all the things that you are doing?
Unity: Well, everybody I was around with has taken themselves higher. Me and all of my friends and the kids i was connected with, we've all elevated to a higher plateau..
Unity: and we are still rising.
Tony: is there anything you would change if you could go back?
Maria: I would abstain from premarital sex - ha, ha!
Jean: I would have been as serious in school as I was with my graffitti... and I would have liked to have been a minor, longer, cuz its tougher out there now...
Sarah: In retrospect, what was high school to you guys and how did it affect your lives? What was that chapter of your lives like?
Maria: Tune in Friday nights at 10pm. You'll see.
Unity: It was a vital part of my growth and devwelopment into the person I am now.
robin: Unity, do you have an album out?
Unity: Yes, yes, look for my album on street scholars records. www.ssrecords.ent.com
Unity: I believe that's it. 510-997-9075 is the street scholars hotline.
hector: i remember 1 time i saw u at school last year and i saw u, and u showed me ur CD.
sabyne: unity, what inspires your music?
Unity: life. death.
Unity: the balance.
Unity: the universe.
Mike: Unity, you inspire me to be a better person.
sabyne: me too
mom: I love you guys, gotta go. I love the show!!!!!!!!! :)
Maria: I love you too, mom! I'll see you on Sunday.
Tony: What did your families have to say after they saw the series?
Jean: My family was surprised by what they say, especially about the things that were asked of me... I bet they found out alot about me that they didn't know...
robin: Unity, how has the show affected your music career?
Unity: Um, it's definitely put me in your view... with everyone I'm trying to reach...
Unity: which is all of you.
Amoeba: Jean...how's your dad now?
Jean: We're doing a lot better... we're talking now, although he did mess up my sociology book ... I talked him into taking a claass with me...
Yemi: What do you want to be, Unity?
Unity: I wanna be ME!!!!
victoria: I like the way you tried to put all minority together me personaly I am in the MECHA at my high school and I want to be a civil rights attorney.
Jean: La raza unida nunca sera vencida
Sarah: You all inspire me with your honesty and insight...it is absolutely amazing.
Moderator: We're half way through the chat. Keep sending those great questions!
DJ1: How did you know it was the right time to "go all the way" with Jean?
Maria: Jean was my first. I knew when I met him that he was special. Even if we don't stay together, I won't regret it because he respected me as a woman and a person. And he loved me. And he rocks well!
Jean: I still rock well... but she's right about everything else... and I even still do respect her...
sabyne: Maria, i think you are a very insightful person. you're honest, and you're not afraid to say what's on your mind. I like, and respect that.
Amoeba: maria...are you doing anything with your art now?
Maria: I am frustrated at ELAC and it is pushing me to go to the Art Institute of Chicago. I am still taking pictures. I am exploring female nudes. Any takers?
MrT: Maria, your photography was great
Sarah: You all inspire me with your honesty and insight...it is absolutely amazing.
Amoeba: unity...are you still working with latinos?
Unity: Yes. my brothas and my sistas!
victoria: Jean, so what are you going to do with your life who do you want to be?
Jean: I want to be an art teacher here in east la, and continue with my own art in my own way...
Jean: The show affected my art because now beside designing the logo, most of my other work has nothing to do with the series, its just my entrepreneurship.
Maria: Hello, Michelle.
Tara: Just wanted to let you 3 know that I am 24 & I love watching Senior Year...Takes me back to high school :o)
Jean: If you're home on a friday night, at least you're watching us and not the other junk on tv.
Tara: I watched it twice tonight...
Unity: alright!! Yeah!! I like watching it too!
Maria: Keep watching!
robin: Which do you think had the most influence: the show on you or you on the show?
sabyne: good question robin
Unity: that's a funny question. Both. I mean, it's impacted my life.
Maria: The show on me. The filmmakers deeply impacted my life. They became our friends and I wouldn't be who I am today without them. Jerry and Maria - the filmmakers- we love you!
Sarah: Do you think that high school shaped you more than any other period in your life?
Jean: It's real easy to relate to it as the time of your life when you became who you are.
Amoeba: Are any of your guys going to try and get into show biz ...?
Unity: I try to stay limelit.
Jean: I like making music, but I don't want to be anywhere near TV. Maybe independent films...
Maria: I am looking for a talk show - any takers? I was a child actress. I appeared on Full House. I have mad skills!
victoria: 4 reals maria?
DJ1: Why did you transfer to Fairfax High School your Senior Year?
Unity: because I wanted to be back with all the people I grew up with in L.A.
Unity: I'm from los angeles. Met most of those people at a school called Wilshire crest, even before that. I went to Sac town for a little while in my freshmen year.
sabyne: i went to wilshire crest elementry!!
Unity: And then after that, I went to a private school in Burbank for two years, showed me the ropes.
Moderator: 15 minutes left everyone. Keep the questions coming!
DJ1: Maria, your photos are great on the website. How important is photography to you?
Maria: I wish I had more time for my art. But it still plays a major role in my life. Every where I go I have a camera in my hand. Thank you very much.
DJ1: Jean, do you feel more pressure on you and Maria as a "couple" since SENIOR YEAR was shot? Has the series affected you two?
Jean: Pressure? That's not why I'm in the relationship... I do feel pressure, but its not like I use it for anything... just take it with a grain of salt...
Yemi: Maria, when do you think you guys will get married?
Maria: When we get the ring and the dress in the mail.
Jean: For the marriage question, sooner I hope, but there are obstacles.
DJ1: Do you still hang with anyone from Fairfax?
Unity: Stevie Danger!!!
Jean: Yes - all the time... my best friend johnathan, mike, bobby and the rest of the odds crew
Unity: everybody there is my family!
Unity: Umm, I mean, I was down with the whole school, but the napalm click is young orecise, stevie danger... mad bad, brothers since Junior high... Quiet tail and bad' little bro, major, an extended family chief million.
sabyne: unity...i just wanna ask..are you single?
Unity: I'm open.
victoria: hey unity you should come and speak over here in my high? make some people understand!
Unity: Okay, um, yeah...!
Amoeba: tv sucks .. except for senioryear and some others
Jean: I strongly agree, I don't watch TV at all. Maria is the remote monster between us.
Maria: thank you, amoeba, but what about Buffy?
Amoeba: buffy lives!
DJ1: Unity, are you still active politically?
Unity: I'm a revolutionary rhymer that shapes up the foundation of the concrete reality. I bring it back to nature. There is no political "isms" or "schisms."
Amoeba: maria.. maybe she'll pose nude for you
DJ1: Where do you guys think you will be ten years from now?
Unity: Successful!!! Ha!!!
Maria: In 10 years I will be topping ten photo shoots a week. That's the plan. Send me work.
Jean: teaching in east LA... hopefully I'll own property, have a four year old son and a one-year old girl... maybe I'll be working on my book because I do want to write something before I Leave this world...
DJ1: Where will you be ten MINUTES from now?
Maria: 10 minutes closer to 10 photos shoots a week. Watch me!
Amoeba: how important is money to you guys?
Jean: I just need enough to get by...
Unity: Um, I just know that it comes along when you do the work.
Maria: I want success. I want happiness. Money is necessary but I can live without it - I have for so long.
Moderator: 2 more questions...
DJ1: I was a little confused about your dad, what happened to him?
Maria: My father is in Chicago. I will see him in a few weeks. I'll introduce him to Jean. And we'll celebrate his birthday together for the first time.
Jean: I can't wait to meet the man who makes me call him poppa on the phone
victoria: well, I just wish you guys the best I enjoyed the show. and thanks unity for inspiring me even more to help my people. peace1
Sarah: Thank you guys sooooo much!
Unity: thank you! Peace and love!
sabyne: alright ya'll, nice talking to you...goodnite
Moderator: OK everyone. That's it. Thanks so much for joining us tonight Unity, Jean & Maria!
Unity: Learn as much as you can from watching my life. Peace and love!
Maria: Thank you. Stay tuned in.
Jean: Bye everyone! Thanks for watching!
Amoeba: spread the word