In a very timely case of HBO's "The Wire" imitating life, author Margaret B. Jones has admitted to fabricating her autobiography of life as a white member of the Bloods street gang in LA in today's NY Times. The Times covered Ms. Jones, real name Margaret Seltzer, book and life on Feb 28 here. This season's main story arc on The Wire is a story fabricated by a desperate reporter,Scott Templeton(above) about a serial killer who preys on the homeless in Baltimore.
Schwartz claimed to have grown up in a foster home raised by an older African-American mother with numerous African-American foster siblings. She actually grew up in tony Sherman Oaks,CA with her biological family and attended a private Episcopal school, according to the Times.

I had a gut feel after reading this story it was, at a minimum, far-fetched. Jones/Seltzer referred to her foster mother as "Big Mom" which is just not a correct term of endearment for one's mother or grandmother in black culture. Big Momma, mother dear ,or "mudea" yeah, but Big Mom? no.

She claimed to be able to make her foster mother, "Big Mom's" black-eyed peas and cornbread from memory and was thinking of writing a cookbook. She claimed to be done with gang life but hedged in the interview as to whether she was still considered a member. This photo(right) of her posing with a pit bull on a menacing metal pinch collar in red street gear(Bloods color is red) beside her angelic, well-dressed daughter(also in red) seemed to try too hard. Most former gang members don't still want to dress in anything resembling gang attire for fear of retaliation, let alone let their child do it.

What is most mind blowing to me is, is her editor never met her in the 3 years she was editing the book, and no one checked her unusual story out.

I'd love to hear what David Simon has to say on this.

NYTimes Reader Comments on the Times article here.