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Helping parents and kids Learning Community Literacy Center opens in South Omaha

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BY PETE FEY

magine trying to communicate with your child’s teacher in a foreign language, or trying to help your child with homework in a foreign language. Those scenarios are reality for hundreds of immigrant Omaha families with children in Learning Community schools, and a reality that the Learning Community Center of South Omaha, which just opened this past September on 23rd and M Streets, is working to make more manageable. Ted Stillwell, C.E.O. of the Learning Community as well as a former teacher, illustrated one of the problems that arise when such a language gap exists: “When I taught I had kids that understood English very well and parents that didn’t...the kids then had a pretty big advantage if they could tell you [the parents] what was going on in school and the parents couldn’t talk to the school nurse or principal and they had to get everything through the student.” “Imagine if you are in middle school and it’s up to you to convey what’s going on in school,” Stillwell deadpanned. And thus the reason the crux of the Center’s focus is concerned with teaching what the Learning Community calls “Family Literacy,” a broad term which encompasses English lessons, computer knowledge, parenting skills such as reading to children at night, and strategies for communicating with school teachers and administrators. The Center’s origins stem from the same 2007 Unicameral bill that established the Learning Community, which also mandated the creation of elementary learning centers that would provide parents with the resources needed to help their children’s scholastic achievement -- on what exact resources to provide at said learning centers, however, the bill remained quite ambiguous. The bill “is very broad about what you can do at an elementary learning center,” Stillwell said. “You could run computer classes, you could run G.E.D. classes, you could do after-school math... there was a list of seventeen or eighteen suggestions from the legislature.” After a study by the Learning Community Coordinating Council -- the eighteen-member governing body of the Learning Community -- it was determined that what was most needed was a South

Omaha center that would empower immigrant parents to become more involved with their child’s education. “The idea is if you can better help the parents and the adults who are working with these very young children it’s going to affect the children’s reading and literacy skills,” Stillwell explained. On April 24, 2012, the Center began operating out of the Juan Diego Center on South 31st Street with eighteen families drawn from Indian Hills and Gomez Heritage Elementary Schools. The progress of those families was evaluated by the MunroeMeyer Institute at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and although their official results won’t be published until late October or November of this year, Anne O’Hara, Program Director of the South Omaha Community Learning Center, points to a 100 percent Parent-Teacher Conference participation rate among those eighteen families as signs that the Center’s efforts are working. Another indication of the program’s success is its growth from 80 families at the Juan Diego Center to 170 families drawn from eleven elementary schools at the new building, which used to house the South Omaha Branch Library and was renovated this past summer. In order to qualify for enrollment a family must reside in the Learning Community’s Subdistrict 5 and have a child aged four to seven. “We have walk-ins everyday,” O’Hara said. “We haven’t had to do much recruitment. We did some this summer, but we kind of stopped. I think we could easily find 500 families if we looked for them...I know that very soon we are going to have to start turning families away. But we have for the most part stopped recruitment because people have been bringing their families and friends in. By the middle of this month [October] we’ll be full. We’ll max out at about 180 families in this building.” “Once they’re in the door they get excited, they want to stay,” she concluded. Which brings about the question -- what next? Already in the works is a North Omaha Center, which will focus less on English lessons but will retain a large portion of the “Family Literacy” curriculum, and Stillwell hopes that eventually there will be “satellite” centers all around the city that can function as “smaller versions” of the program. Still, it was clear from my visit to the South Omaha Center that the families who the program is benefitting now are grateful. Said Sylvia Dorres as she walked out, kid in tow, “I like talking in English...it’s for my children.”,

VISIONS FROM FIVE MINUTES INTO THE FUTURE • OCTOBER 3, 2013 • The greatest growth industry in America for the next decade will be haunted houses. Some will be the traditional spook house, with rooms filled with horrors that attendees must pass through, one after another. Some will be theatrical, with patrons following

news

characters about on farms or old theaters, learning their terrifying stories. Some will be games and must be solved to escape. Many will be open year-round, and there will be a few in every small town and dozens in large cities.

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heartlandhealing N E W A G E H E A LT H A N D W E L L N E S S B Y M I C H A E L B R AU N S T E I N

Lecture Tour on Healing Visits Omaha

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pending most of my adult life in Los Angeles, I became accustomed to unique opportunities to learn about healing, metaphysics, mind/ body medicine and spirituality. Practitioners commonly mounted workshops, seminars, lectures, presentations and conferences in L.A., the nexus of New Age. Upon moving back to Omaha, I was happily surprised by the number of opportunities in the Heartland. There are more than enough gatherings to keep any seeker busy, offering wisdom and healing to all comers. Omaha is no mere oasis along the Oregon Trail. The grass isn’t really greener on either of the Coasts or in the Big City. In fact, roots grow a little deeper on the prairie. This weekend bears witness as members of the Bruno Gröning Circle of Friends will present a lecture about the healing practice and techniques taught by the late 20th century German visionary, Bruno Gröning. The Circle of Friends follows the teachings of Gröning, a German faith healer who died in 1959. Once a household name throughout most of post-war Europe, Gröning’s teachings are finding a broad audience in America some fifty years after his death. It reminds us once again that healing is a natural force not limited to modern science, Obamacare or drugs and surgery. Worldwide recognition: On May 23, 2013, the Bruno Gröning Circle of Friends was awarded the prestigious Peace Pole Award at the United Nations for its work around the world. Organization leader Dieter Häusler accepted the award, noting, “This award signifies the recognition of the life work of Bruno Gröning, and at the same time all of the Bruno Gröning friends worldwide who carry the message of peace, love, and harmony, as well as the possibility of healing on the spiritual path.” That includes a strong group here in Omaha. Just another carpenter: Gröning was born in Danzig, Germany in 1906 and worked as a trade laborer most of his life. Notes about his life on the Circle of Friends website [www.bruno-groening.org/] describe a childhood in which his parents learned early on that their son was extraordinary. As a young man, he was drafted into service, was captured and interned by Russia until 1945. Shortly after World War II he began delivering lectures on faith healing throughout Germany. According to his biographers, he never promised cures and took no credit for healing, recognizing that healing is due to everyone by spiritual intercession. In a German-produced docudrama about his life, Gröning says, “People who receive healing should thank God for it. I am nothing.

God is everything.” A fascinating 12-minute trailer for the film is available at www.gh-film.de/. Gröning continued with his healing sessions, reaching out to thousands across Europe. By the 1950s, he had become somewhat of a cause célèbre in the media. Controversy began to dog Gröning, especially after managers promised to establish healing centers through Europe but instead tried to capitalize on him as a phenomenon. A series of legal issues arose and Gröning was aptly exonerated. He always insisted that he did not promote himself as the source of healing. Gröning died in Paris in 1959, leaving a number of people who had attended his healing sessions. Grete Häusler met Gröning in 1950. She had been healed of three chronic illnesses. In 1979, Häusler committed herself to preserving the teachings of Bruno Gröning. She formed the Circle of Friends of Bruno Gröning. There are now over 3,000 affiliated groups in over 110 countries. The group is not affiliated with any religion or church. There are no financial obligations. There is never a charge for any of the work they perform, which is as Gröning stipulated. All of the work is paid for by voluntary donations. A physician gets involved: In 1984, a doctor from Hamburg, Matthias Kamp, learned of Gröning’s work. Kamp, a man of science, was skeptical at first. After looking at some of the case histories of healings associated with Gröning, Kamp recognized a need to scientifically document the events. He formed a group of physicians and scientists who recorded facts surrounding the methods taught by Gröning’s followers. Impressed, this group, the Medical Scientific Group (MWF) began lecturing and teaching about Gröning’s method. Now the group travels around the world giving free lectures and demonstrating the technique. Kamp’s group has documented hundreds of spontaneous healings. These spontaneous healings include animals as well. At 2 p.m. Saturday, October 5, members of the Bruno Gröning Circle of Friends will lecture in Omaha at the John D. Wear Building at 7602 Pacific. Admission is free and donations are accepted. Visitors should use the east entrance. For more information, interested parties can call a local member at 402-891-0121. The purpose of the lectures is simply to share the potential of this spiritual healing. Past attendees have had an opportunity to practice the technique and experience the healing force. The lectures adhere to Gröning’s teachings. Gröning believed that the healing force, which he called Heilstrom or healing stream, was available to all. No one has a corner on healing and it is free to all. Be well. ,

HEARTLAND HEALING is a New Age polemic describing alternatives to conventional methods of healing the body, mind and planet. It is provided as information and entertainment, certainly not medical advice. It is not an endorsement of any particular therapy, either by the writer or The Reader. Visit HeartlandHealing.com for more information.

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heartland healing

FREE

INFLUENTIAL SPEAKERS. SPEAKING INFLUENCE. On October 26, we’ll have 14 remarkable speakers and performers sharing their perspectives on influences. Be inspired. Be enlightened. Be influenced. Meet Four of Our Speakers: Ben Sasse At 37, Ben became president of the 130-year-old Midland University in 2009, making him one of the youngest chief executives in American higher education. At the time, Midland was on the verge of closing. Today, Ben’s hometown college has been Nebraska’s fastest-growing school four years in a row. Ben will be asking the question: If you were 18 all over again today, with a $100,000 guaranteed loan and FOUR years of free time, what would you do to secure success in life?

Chris Hughes Founder of Artifact Bag Co., Chris designs and manufactures canvas and leather goods using the artisanal method and the finest materials. His designs have been featured in New York Times, Esquire, GQ, Garden Design, Gizmodo, Uncrate, Popular Mechanics, and Inc. Chris will be asking the question: Do you plan for luck?

Laurie Smith Camp Laurie is the Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Nebraska. She was appointed to the bench in 2001, and her nomination was confirmed by all 100 United States Senators. Laurie will be asking the question: Under your personal code of ethics, to whom do you owe a duty?

Susan Ann Koenig As an attorney turned executive coach, speaker, and writer, Susan inspires and empowers successful executives, professionals and leaders to make their greatest contribution. Susan will be asking the question: What will you focus on today, so that at the end of your life you can say, ‘I see I made a difference’?

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“We’re all better off when we’re all better off.” Call for your free reserved seats today: 402-345-0606 In his book, The Gardens of Democracy: A New American Story of Citizenship, the Economy, and the Role of Government, Eric Liu asks us to think of government not as a machine that needs regular service and repair, but as a garden to be nurtured. Successful gardens follow natural rules but require goals, regular tending, and an understanding of connected ecosystems. While he wants us to have a bigger share of the harvest (we’re all better off when we’re all better off), Liu also asks us to be more involved as citizen gardeners. Liu, a former White House deputy domestic policy advisor and a regular contributor to TIME.com and TheAtlantic.com, also says: • “Society becomes how we behave. Positive behavior begets positive behavior.” • “Government should be about the big what and the little how.” • “Freedom is responsibility. Freedom costs a little freedom.” Join us as Eric Liu makes his case.

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 9 7:30 PM

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| THE READER |

OCT. 3 -9, 2013

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had no problem getting opinions from folks when it came to asking people about cupcakes. I dare say that the topic of cupcakes is one that nearly everyone has an opinion on, and boy do people get mad at you if you don’t agree with them. I asked a variety of people to tell me where the best place for cupcakes is within the Omaha area, and everyone had a different opinion. I can’t say I’m surprised – after all, you really have to work hard to mess up cupcakes, so there are a bunch of places you can go and get a really good cupcake in town.

Jones Bros.

2121 South 67th St. www.jonesbroscupcakes.com

It’s no shock that this place is on the list. It’s one of the most popular cupcake places in the area. It’s so good that all the Zumba instructors from the Sunday classes in Stinson Park throw caloric caution to the wind and go there after their set. Amy Riehle is a big believer in the Sweet & Salty cupcake. “Just have one and you will be a believer in the combination!” she says.

Cupcake Island

1314 S. 119th St. www.cupcakeisland.com

I’d honestly never heard of this place until I started researching cupcakes, and frankly, I’m shocked I hadn’t visited this place sooner. It’s amazing. I was in awe of the cupcake I tried (it was a carrot cake cupcake) and then was thrilled to discover a sample plate at the counter and was able to try tastes of three more varieties. All of them were delicious, and thankfully nobody behind the counter told me to stop hogging the samples. Amber Tyler agrees. “That place is awesome,” she says. “So yummy.”

Bliss Old Market Bakery at Aromas Coffeehouse 1031 Jones St. www.blissbakery.com

It was while I was having coffee with my friend Kaitlin Heavin that I discovered the cupcakes at Bliss Old Market Bakery located at Aromas Coffeehouse. We were sipping on coffee and I glanced over at the front counter and said, “Hey, do they have cupcakes here?” Kaitlin’s eyes widened and she replied breathlessly, “Oh, you have to try the red velvet. I’m not even kidding, Tamsen. Try it now.” Luckily, I don’t mind being intimidated when it comes to eating cupcakes, and as usual, Kaitlin was right.

Ragazzi’s Pizza

5170 S. 72nd St. www.ragazzi-pizza.com

It may seem weird to head to a pizza place with the main intention of getting your hands on some tasty cupcakes, but I have to tell you that it’s worth the trip. My husband is generally not a fan of cupcakes at all, but he’ll chomp down some cupcakes at Ragazzi’s. His favorite is the salted cupcake, which works well because my favorite is the vanilla bean cupcake. It’s a lot easier to maintain marital bliss when we’re not fighting over who gets to eat the last bite of a cupcake.

Drizzles Olde Towne Bakery

411 West Mission Avenue, Bellevue www.drizzlesoldetownebakery.com

The only reason I don’t typically order cupcakes from Drizzles Olde Towne Bakery is because I freak out over how good their donuts are. On the other hand, their cupcakes are indeed amazing. Not only do they make tasty cupcakes, but they usually decorate them so beautifully that it’s almost a shame to take a bite…almost. If you don’t agree with me, that’s fine. We can meet up and try cupcakes at your favorite place. It’s all in the name of research, right? ,

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dish

Including Taste of Ireland Oct. 5 | 10 a.m. | $35 Aerosol Painting with Gerard Pefung Oct. 5 | 2 p.m. | $10 Genealogy with Kathy Buhrman Oct. 8 | 7 p.m. | $50 Irish Whiskey Tasting Oct. 12 | 10 a.m. | $20 Intro To Gaelic Language with Mary Kate Glied Oct. 13 | 5:30 p.m. | $50 Omaha Sister City Association: Patron Party Oct. 13 | 7 p.m. | $10 Omaha Sister City Association Film Screening: Waking Ned Devine

For Information and Registration omahacreativeinstitute.org rebecca@omahacreativeinstitute.org 785-218-3061

LEGACY The Emily Fisher Landau Collection NOW TH R O U G H J A NU A RY 5, 2014

This exhibition is organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York

Open Tuesday through Sunday • FREE Admission Exhibition Sponsors: Presenting Sponsor: Omaha Steaks; Major Sponsors: Douglas County, Annette and Paul Smith; Contributing Sponsor: Eve and Fred Simon,; Supporting Sponsors: Joan Gibson and Don Wurster, Lincoln Financial Foundation, Inc.; Additional support provided by KPMG, LLP; Nebraska Arts Council and Nebraska Cultural Endowment James Rosenquist (b. 1933), House of Fire II, 1982, oil on canvas, 78 x 198in., Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; promised gift of Emily Fisher Landau P.2010.241a-c. Art, ©James Rosenquist / Licensed by VAGA, New York, photograph by Tim Nighswander/Imaging4Art

2200 Dodge St. | Omaha, NE | (402) 342-3300 | www.joslyn.org

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wo years since the U.S. pulled troops out of Iraq Americans still slog it out in Afghanistan -- a full 12 years since its start. The dual wars for which so many paid a heavy price will forever be analyzed by the likes of Omaha native John Nagl, managing editor of the official U.S. Army-Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Manual. The retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel was not only a military wonk under General David Petraeus but a warrior for whom the wars the U.S., waged in the wake of 9/11 were both object lessons and hard realities. Millions of people have been touched directly or indirectly by the conflicts. Thousands of combatants and hundreds of thousands of noncombatants have died, many more have suffered physical damage and emotional trauma. The material costs run into the trillions. The intangible costs are incalculable. Nagl is well aware that America and the world is sharply divided on the question of whether the wars were just or unjust, necessary or unnecessary, moral or immoral. Weighing such questions is nothing new for Nagl, who is steeped in Jesuit values gleaned from his education at Omaha Creighton Prep. He was a Golden Boy who graduated West Point, became a Rhodes Scholar and studied at Oxford. He served in both the first Gulf War, where he led a tank platoon, and the Iraqi Freedom campaign, where he led armor regiments. Like some Templar Knight on a crusade this warrior-scholar has been imbued with a sense of nationalistic duty to defend his country from all enemies and with a faithful devotion to do God’s will as he sees it. Nagl found no contradiction serving his fellow man and doing combat. He’s comfortable too squaring his humanist ideals and Christian faith with having influenced the Army’s adoption of controversial counterinsurgency (COIN) techniques. “The sense of being a man for others, your life being a gift and it being your responsibility to invest that gift wisely for the greater glory of God, for the furthermost of his purposes here on Earth, that’s part of what certainly drove me to West Point and to a career in the military,” says Nagl, who was near the top of his 1988 West Point class. Long on a rising star track in the military industrial complex – he received the George C. Marshall Award as the top graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College – he seemingly went “rogue” when he advanced the use of COIN strategies in his master’s dissertation. He borrowed his work’s title, Learning to Eat Soup with a Knife, from a T.S. Lawrence observation about the difficulties of responding to insurgencies. “I read that and I thought, man, that captures it, I now understand how hard this kind of war is. And then I went to Al Anbar (Iraq) and tried it and it was a whole lot harder than I thought it was.” The impetus for his infatuation with COIN was the U.S. military’s dominance of Iraqi forces in the Gulf War and his conviction that future enemies would avoid direct confrontations.

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OCT. 3 -9, 2013

“I became convinced the military might of the United States which had cut through the Iraqi army, the fourth largest in the world, like a hot knife through butter, was so overwhelming that future enemies wouldn’t confront us conventionally in force on force, tank on tank battles, they’d fight us as irregular warriors, as insurgents and terrorists.” Nagl was a voice in the wilderness, due in no small part to the fact that “after Vietnam,” he says, “we consciously turned away from counterinsurgency as a nation and as an army, and pretty much literally burned the books and decided we weren’t going to do that anymore.” Yet there was Nagl calling on the ghosts of wars’ past.

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cover story

“I was very lonely in the mid-1990s doing that. Everybody else was studying the revolution in military affairs and Shock and Awe and the idea that the U.S. military would triumph rapidly using precision weaponry. I was convinced that wasn’t the case. “It was a discouraging time. Nobody was interested in counterinsurgency until after the attacks of September 11th (2001), when suddenly everybody was interested in counterinsurgency.” Nagl’s dissertation found a publisher and his advocacy of COIN that before fell on deaf ears got the attention of a well-placed general, David Petraeus, who embraced Nagl’s writings. Petraeus, who’d been a professor of Nagl’s at West Point, eventually

became the lead commander prosecuting the war in Iraq, where he changed the rules of engagement, partly through the use of COIN tactics in the field. “It was the first time I felt I’d found someone in a position of authority who really understood the need. He was the right guy in the right place at the right times,” Nagl says of Petraeus. Nagl, who was twice posted to the 24th Infantry Division at Fort Riley, Kansas, contributed to a new counterinsurgency field manual and tested out his theories in combat. “I was sent to Iraq to do the research and to conduct counterinsurgency in Al Anbar in 2003 and 2004. We were rediscovering lessons consigned continued on page 10 y

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SEPT. 26 - OCT. 2, 2013

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to very dusty bookshelves and I was just the guy who’d blown the dust off of those books. And then having read the books I tried to implement it in a particularly challenging place and quite frankly failed pretty miserably, so that when I came back from Al Anbar I wrote a short piece about how I thought I’d done, calling it, ‘Spilling Soup on Myself.’ That became the preface to the paperback version of my dissertation. “One of the criticisms I make of myself in that preface is that there’s sort of a blithe sense in my book that once you understand the principles it’s comparatively easy to apply them and, boom, everything will

On Charlie Rose he took part in a roundtable discussion about Vietnam, Iraq and counterinsurgency that he says “was intellectually stimulating and engaging and I hope helpful to the American public.” “The Daily Show was a different experience entirely,” he notes. “The field manual had been published by the University of Chicago. I was back at Fort Riley, Kansas and was literally running a machine gun range when I got a phone call from someone purporting to be from the show asking if I could come on later that week. I didn’t believe it really was them. Well, it really was, and I said yes. Then I had to convince the Army to

work out. Yeah not so much, not so much…Conventional combat is hard enough but counterinsurgency is conventional combat cubed. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever tried to do in my life.” During Nagl’s 2003-2004 deployment he became an Army celebrity. “A journalist named Peter Maas embedded with my unit wrote a very substantial New York Times Magazine piece called ‘Professor Nagl’s War’ that popularized some of my ideas to a pretty big audience.” He says his profile was also enhanced “being at the center of the storm” as military assistant for then deputy secretary of defense Paul Wolfowitz in the Pentagon “as the Iraq war was going rapidly downhill in 2005 and 2006.” As COIN became in vogue as a new approach his reputation as a counterinsurgency guru got him invited on the Charlie Rose Show and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Nagl’s a natural for the media to glom onto. He’s handsome, articulate, passionate. He can banter with the best. He cuts a dashing figure in or out of uniform and embodies the whole “be all you can be” slogan with aplomb and panache.

let me go. The Army actually cut orders, it was official business, so I wore my uniform.” Nagl’s sure what proceeded was “the funniest discussion Jon Stewart has ever had on camera about an army field manual.” This hawk’s appearance on a show synonymous with cool, anti-establishment satire, he says, makes his “credibility go way up” when talking to student audiences. “They don’t care I’ve been shot at in a couple of wars, but trading words with Jon Stewart, that is an honor right there.” COIN strategy came under sharp criticism within and outside senior military command beginning in 2008. He retired from the Army that same year. In his immediate post-Army life he served as president of the Center for a New American Security from 2009 to 2012. This summer he assumed the headmaster role at the exclusive all-boys Haverford School in Penn., where his son Jack started the 6th grade. After his Army retirement there was speculation he’d left because he found his path for advancement blocked due to his close association with counterinsurgency. He denies it. “My retirement had nothing to do with having been passed over. I hadn’t been. If I had been, I

| THE READER |

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wouldn’t have been positioned to continue rising up the ranks,” he says. He adds that his retirement also had nothing to do “with counterinsurgency strategy falling out of favor,” adding, “It hadn’t when my retirement was announced in January 2008 or when I retired in October 2008.” In fact, he argues, counterinsurgency “was still ascendant in 2009 when the President twice increased force levels in Afghanistan to conduct COIN.” No, it turns out Nagl walked away from the service he loves for, well, love. He and his wife Susi Varga, whom he met at Oxford, have a young son together and she wasn’t so keen on being an Army bride. In an email, he wrote, “The decision was a personal one that was perhaps inevitable when I fell in love with a Hungarian Oxford student of literature and the arts and brought her on repeated tours to Kansas. The Army life had relatively little appeal for her and never really let her find her footing and spread her wings. I’m hoping that our new life together at the Haverford School will provide soil in which she flowers.” That doesn’t mean he’s made a complete break with the military world, which after all was all he knew for more than two decades. “I miss the Army every day. I loved being in the Army, being part of an organization that has global reach, that is composed of talented, dedicated young professionals, that boasts such a proud history, that makes history. I like to think that I’m still helping my army and my nation as a civilian – writing, educating, serving on the Defense Policy Board and the Reserve Forces Policy Board. But I still miss strapping on my tanker boots every morning.” During his time in the military he did his best to both live the Jesuit motto “for the greater glory of God” and to train for and wage war. He says the two things never posed a moral conflict for him. “I never saw any conflict between being a product of a Jesuit education and serving in the U.S. military. The Jesuits taught me the difference between jus ad bellum and jus in bello; the first, whether a war is fought for a just cause, is the business of politicians. How that war is fought, or jus in bello, is the business of soldiers. The first Gulf War, Operation Desert Storm, was clearly a just and necessary war, fought to free a conquered people and restore international order, and it was fought in a just manner. “My second war, Iraqi Freedom, I did not then and do not now believe was necessary. However, it was fought according to the laws of war on our side, and we punished violations of those laws that did occur. I also worked to help the Army fight it more wisely and cause less harm to the Iraqi people through the writing of the U.S. Army-Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual. The Jesuits must have thought that on balance, I worked Ad majorem Dei gloriam (For the greater glory of God) as they named me Alumnus of the Year for 2012 and included my rank on the award.” Though the haze of war is full of tragedies and atrocities, Nagl holds to the classical warrior’s view that duty to country and God are the same. This fervent patriot and devout Christian swears allegiance to both.

“Military service is completely compatible with the values I learned at Prep. Some of the finest men for others I have ever known were those who laid down their lives for their friends that we could all live in peace and freedom. We must build a country that is worthy of their sacrifice.” As a military academy product and teacher (he taught at West Point and the Strategic Studies Institute at the United States Army War College), Nagl knows Army history and thus takes a long view of things when it comes to COIN. “Counterinsurgency is always going to be messy and slow, but if you’re trying to defeat an insurgency, it’s the least bad option. I’ve always said counterinsurgency is hard, that it’s not guaranteed to work by any means. What I always ask the skeptics is, ‘What do you recommend instead?’ “And the fact is with the American withdrawal from Iraq, the pending continuing drawdown in Afghanistan, the United States has decided not to engage itself in what we call big footprints –, tens or hundreds of thousands of American troops counterinsurgency-camping. But we’re still engaged in supporting insurgencies in places like Syria and supporting countries fighting against insurgencies not just in Afghanistan and Pakistan but also in the Philippines, Somalia, Yemen, the list goes on. “So it isn’t that insurgency and counterinsurgency have gone away but America’s not convinced you get what you pay for, and that I think is a fair question.” In many ways, the beat goes on in the places where Nagl and his fellow soldiers saw action. “Big footprint counterinsurgency continues in Iraq but it’s Iraqi troops rather than American troops who are conducting that campaign. We were able to build up the Iraqi forces and tamp down the fires of sectarian conflict sufficiently to pass that one off to Iraq and say, ‘Good luck guys,. over to you.’ “The campaign in Afghanistan is more complicated. Afghanistan has never been as important a country for U.S. interests as Iraq was and the real epicenter of this struggle is not Afghanistan at all, but Pakistan, which is the current home of Al Qaeda central, what remains of it, and I believe still today is the most dangerous country in the world for the United States. The biggest global threat we face comes from Pakistan.” When it comes to military affairs these days Nagl is an interested and well-informed bystander. As closely as he still observes what’s happening in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere, he’s more concerned today with leading a school and preparing its students than with war analysis and strategy. At Haverford he feels he’s found a real home.

“In a lot of ways it’s a secular version of Creighton Prep. It’s a K-12 with about a thousand boys, with a great history. It started in 1884, a hundred years before I graduated from Prep. When I visited the school there were two things engraved in the fabric of the school that really sang to me. One was over the gymnasium and it said a sound mind and a sound body in Latin and those are principles I believe in pretty strongly.” He says engraved just over the entrance of the upper school building is Teddy Roosevelt’s Man in the Arena quotation, whose credo of service and action is one that Nagl’s lived by.

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errors, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” “To fight the world’s fight, I believe in that responsibility,” says Nagl. “The Jesuits taught me that, my mom and dad taught me that. So it really seemed like this was a place after my own heart.” , Read more of Leo Adam Biga’s work at leoadambiga.wordpress.com.

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| THE READER |

OCT. 3 - 9, 2013

11

8 DAYS

TOPTV

“Welcome to the Family Thursdays, 8 p.m. (NBC)

The parents of Molly (Ella Rae Peck), an underachieving white girl, are overjoyed at her high school graduation. “Suck it, doubters!” her dad exclaims. “She’s Arizona State’s problem now!” Meanwhile, the parents of Junior (Joseph Haro), an overachieving Latino, are overjoyed for a different reason. He’s giving his valedictorian’s speech and preparing for a college career at Stanford. As he reads the speech from his laptop, he gets a message from Molly: “I’m pregnant.” Thus begins an excellent culture-clash sitcom. “Welcome to the Family” throws two unlikely families together and forces them to get along. Mostly they don’t, and the comedians work wonders with resentment and misunderstanding. Mike O’Malley and Mary McCormack are particularly good as Molly’s parents, trading mordant wisecracks about her limitations. To everybody’s dismay, Molly and Junior decide to get married. It’s a terrible decision that, as a viewer, I fully support. The worse things go for these two, the angrier their parents will get, and the funnier “Welcome to the Family” will be. — Dean Robbins

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THURSDAY3 Oct. 3

FINE ART LIVE AUCTION

Gallery 72 Bancroft Street Market at 10th and Bancroft The auction held by Gallery 72 allows consumers to purchase secondary market art within a range of prices, appealing to both new collectors and experienced ones. Some pieces to expect include “Mississippi Night Light” which is a rich lithograph by Yvonne Jacquette. “Return to Goya’s Caprichos” is a portfolio of eight prints embossed in etching and rubber stamps by artist Enrique Chagoya. “Muto” is another etching and aquatint luxuriously accented with seal fur by Mimmo Paladino. “Escape Volontaire” is a mix of James Coignard’s best talents. There are two chances to preview the art. The first is Wednesday, Oct. 2 from 12 to 7 p.m. and the second is Oct. 3 from 4 to 7 p.m.. –Paul Heft

FRIDAY4 Oct. 4

ART BAR featuring Clark & Company House of Loom, 1012 S. 10th St. No cover; 6 to 9 p.m. www.styleloud.com

The ART BAR series returns in October with another collection of young local artists showing off their talents in the casual and inviting Loom atmosphere. This time the amazing art will be accompanied by a performance of the awesome acoustic trio Clark & Company. These triplets (yes, they are triplet brothers Cooper and Simon and sister Sophie) and Omaha School of Rock kids put on a very eclectic and memorable show. The perfect afterwork, have a craft cocktail kind of can’t miss Friday entertaiment. See you there. —ES

| THE READER |

CLARK & COMPANY

picks

FRANK TURNER

SATURDAY7 Oct. 7

Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls w/ The Smith Street Band & Koo Koo Kanga Roo Waiting Room 6212 Maple St. 8 p.m.; $15 ADV / $17 DOS www.waitingroomlounge.com

In a review for his last album, NME magazine described British singer-songwriter Frank Turner as “the people’s prince of punk poetry.” But Turner’s lyrics can be quite personal as well. His lastest album, Tape Deck Heart — and the lead single, “Recovery” — is about as confessional as they come. “I write autobiographically,” Turner admitted in a recent NPR interview. “I’ve tried writing fiction in

songs and I’m rubbish at it; I find it very difficult to find anything meaningful to say if I’m making it up. [‘Recovery’ is] a song about being at the bottom of the barrel and trying to kind of get out of there, somehow.” The English folk/punk singer-songwriter from Meonstoke, Hampshire, was initially the vocalist of post-hardcore band Million Dead. Turner embarked on a primarily acoustic-based solo career following the band’s split in 2005. Both in the studio and during live performances, Turner is accompanied by his backing band, The Sleeping Souls, which consists of Ben Lloyd (guitar, mandolin), Tarrant Anderson (bass), Matt Nasir (piano) and Nigel Powell (drums). To date, Turner has released five solo albums, two rarities compilation albums, one split album and five EPs. Turner’s fifth studio album, Tape Deck Heart was released in April. For an up close and personal interview with Turner, go to www.thereader.com. ­—Jesica Hill

H

o, ho, ho! What’s that you say?Can’t we enjoy fall first? If you’ve been in a store recently, you know as well as anyone else that retailers and other businesses have been knee-deep in holiday planning for several months now. And their next step? It’s probably hiring extra help for the crush that businesses feel around the holiday season. Which means -you guessed it- a ton of jobs will be opening up in Omaha shortly and it’s our job to tell you who’s planning for extra help to spread holiday cheer this year.

The Numbers There isn’t much mystery in the types of businesses who typically create jobs in Omaha for the holiday season. According to average employment information by industry provided by Phil Baker, labor market information director for the Nebraska Department of Labor, general merchandise stores have created the largest number of jobs: more than 8,500 in the fourth quarter since 2007. Clothing and accessory stores closely follow with more than 8,300 people employed during the same timeframe. The true narrative, though, comes in the comparison of job orders in Douglas, Sarpy and Washington counties, as compiled by the department of labor. This data covers the fourth quarter for 2011 and 2012 and shows a sharp contrast in the number of jobs created during the holiday season. Of the nearly two dozen industries listed, the four with the highest job creation were accomodation and food services; arts, entertainment and recreation; retail trade; and transportation and warehousing. By far, retail trade had the highest average employment over both fourth quarter periods with 851, followed by accommodation and food service with 209. The month with the highest job orders was October 2012 with 429 compared with October 2011, in which just 52 jobs were created. So why the big difference from one year to the next? Baker says it’s a direct correlation to economic confidence. “I believe that in 2011 employers were still a little skeptical of whether consumers would have the money to spend as we were just starting to come out of the recession,” he said. “I think what is reflected in 2012 job orders placed by Omaha employers is more reflective of the normal ebbs and flows of the economy.”

jobs for the holiday season, and that is true this year as well, says Employment Supervisor, Wylene Woodard. “We have a lot of positions where people can earn up to $2,500 or much more during the holidays and get our employee discount for a full year,” she said. “In September and October we typically hire about 3,500 temporary employees to work in our call center and distribution center during November and December.” If you’re looking for a job during the holidays this year, don’t limit your search to the typical opportunities. Omaha’s Hayneedle, the 27th largest Internet-only retailer in the country, is looking to fill 175 jobs alone in its Customer Care Center located in the Chalco Valley Business Park, says Donna Faust, the company’s director of brand marketing and media relations. “We are hiring across the organization to support our growth initiatives,” Faust says. “The biggest area of need currently is for seasonal associates to help us serve our customers through the holiday season.” Hayneedle, which has more than 400 employees in Omaha before the holiday hires, also has fulfillment centers in Ohio and California, both of which will also be nearly doubling their employee population during the holiday season. Hayneedle will be hiring new employees for its phone service, sales and e-mail service teams, including customer advocates, internet retail associates and seasonal e-mail service specialists. Faust describes the successful candidates for these positions being people who are happy and work hard to provide information and insight as well as people who are keen to offer advice on finding just the right product to fit the customer’s needs. “These positions tend to last about 90 days with potential for full time employment after the season has ended,” Faust said. “We actually fill many of our corporate openings from the Customer Care Center. In fact, a third of my team has worked there.” If you’re looking to earn some extra cash this holiday season, and if last year’s holiday hiring statistics hold true this year, you will be able to choose from some of Omaha’s best and brightest companies.

Omaha Steaks will be hosting two jobs fairs in early October: 1. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., October 7 and 8, 109th Street and John Galt Blvd. Hiring for direct sales, local truck drivers, inbound customer care, data entry, maintenance and Omaha area retail stores.

So, Who’s Hiring Anyway? If you’ve lived in Omaha for any length of time, you probably know that Omaha Steaks creates hundreds of

2. 9 a.m.-2 p.m., October 9, 48th and G streets. Hiring for packing and shipping. 3. 5-7 p.m., October 10, 48th and G streets. Hiring for local truck drivers.

Hayneedle will be hosting job fairs throughout the month of October: 4. 2-6 p.m., October 3, 10, 17 and 24, Chalco Valley Customer Care Center, 13831 Chalco Valley Parkway. On-site assessments and on-the-spot interviews.

omaha job fair

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OCTOBER 3 - 9, 2013

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Have you ever been diagnosed as having Major Depressive Disorder? If so, you might be able to participate in a research study! YOU MUST: • Have tried 1-2 different treatments that have been unsuccessful • Be male or female between the ages of 19-65 • Currently meet criteria for moderate to severe major depression OMAHA WORLD HERALD • Be able to attend scheduled visits every 1-2 weeks WE OFFER: • $25 per visit for time and travel 2.4 x 2.4” • Physical exams, study medication and laboratory work up at no cost to you If you are interested in participating in this study please contact rv/rv/rv Kim at 402-345-8828 x22

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You deliver the packages. We deliver the funds. Seasonal Drivers Needed! Who doesn’t love working in a dynamic environment while earning extra money? We’ve got both waiting for you in one great opportunity with an industry-leading company. Kelly Services® is hiring temporary drivers for FedEx Ground®, a small-package ground delivery company serving business and residential customers across North America. You could be hired immediately if you meet these requirements: • 21 years or older • Strong customer service skills • Minimum of six months experience driving like-sized commercial vehicle within the last three years • One year commercial driving experience preferred though CDL not required As a Kelly® employee, you’ll receive weekly electronic pay, a service bonus plan, benefit options, and more. If you’ve got the drive, we want to hear from you. Don’t miss out. Inquire Now! Call (712) 352-5917 to schedule a time to complete the application or Inquire in person Monday-Friday, 9am-2pm at 4406 South 19th Street Council Bluffs, IA 51501 (South Building) An Equal Opportunity Employer

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1-866-200-1898 | vatterott.edu 11818 I Street, Omaha, NE 68137

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OCTOBER 3 - 9, 2013

| THE READER |

omaha job fair

n Flyover Country, a locally produced independent film, will celebrate its premiere with a show Thursday, Nov. 7, at the Waiting Room Lounge, 6212 Maple St. The show will feature performances by film composer Dereck Higgins, as well as artists featured on the movie’s soundtrack including Snake Island, Blue Bird, Rock Paper Dynamite and the Lonely Estates. The $7 show takes place a day before the Objectif49 Films production premeirs for two nights at the Omaha Community Playhouse, 6915 Cass St. For more information, visit flyovermovie.com. n Local label Unread Records and Tapes will host the 19th installment of its Junkfest label showcase Saturday, Nov. 9, at the Sweatshop Gallery, 2727 N. 62nd St. The event will feature performances from both local and national acts that have released music on the label. Among those scheduled to play are Simon Joyner, David Nance, Church of Gravitron, Places We Slept’s Nathan Ma, California’s Furniture Huschle and Charlie McAlister from South Carolina. McAlister, Unread honcho Christopher Fischer and Wes Hess will also display art at the show. Tickets will be $7 at the door. n Renowned horn player Thomas Bacon will lead local musicians in a performance of the Saint Hubert Mass, a traditional ceremony for hunters, Tuesday, Oct. 1, at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, 109 N. 18th St. The arrangement will feature a 24-horn choir featuring Omaha Symphony musicians, University of Nebraska at Omaha students and other local talent. The 7 p.m. show is $20 and $10 for students. n California tape-centric label Burger Records presented a rolling revue showcase of bands affiliated with its label Thursday, Sept. 26, at The Slowdown, 729 N. 14th St. The event rewarded those who got there early with performances by buzz-worthy indie acts like Gap Dream and Colleen Green. The first full set I caught was that by garage slop-poppers Pangea or Together Pangea, as the band’s merch billed them as both. They were just what you’d expect from an energetic band of post-Black Lips/Wavves era lo-fi rockers. They may play upbeat, messy songs but the emphasis is on pop hooks, not punk aggression. Cosmonauts came on next with a slacker-rock vibe that painted in droning, psych-rock shades favored by acts like the Brian Jonestown Massacre or Thee Oh Sees. Cosmonauts are still finding their own unique identity between those two demarcations of sound. The Growlers headlined with the biggest dose of hippie culture on the tour. The sway in a world somewhere between Grateful Dead’s psych-pop side and contemporary touchstones like Dr. Dog. The band has its fans, but the stage show is a laid-back groove that stretches on to the unfamiliar listener. — Chris Aponick The Reader’s Backbeat column seeks to cover the local music scene from all corners of the sound spectrum. Whether it’s news of new bands, farewell shows, album releases or special events, the Reader’s music team wants to hear from you. Got a tip? Email it to backbeat@thereader.com.

T

here’s a lot of death on Tim Kasher’s new album, Adult Film. On the record’s first single, “Truly Freaking Out,” Kasher wrestles with the idea that his friends and family will all die some day, and he isn’t too happy about it. He bleakly points out over rolling keyboards: “I know, I know, I know the end is near / I know, I know it’s all downhill from here. / We’re all cascading to our graves / Tugging back at gravity’s reigns.” At age 39, has Kasher, a staunch atheist, finally come to the realization that dead means dead, and there’s no coming back? “I touch on it a lot it seems throughout the record,” Kasher said via cell while walking to Logan Square in his newly adopted hometown of Chicago. “There’s this kind of sobering that comes with age that anyone of us experiences who has gotten older and on the other side.” One of Kasher’s dreams in his youth was to be a jazz drummer when he retires. “I wanted to be the cool guy that

plays at a bar down the street,” he said. “Now that I’m turning 40 next year, I’m putting that aside. You start having sober realizations of how much time you have left. I also know that so much time has been nicked off, trimmed, shorn from our existence. I don’t feel like I’ve wasted time. I want to keep having more time, if anything.” He may never become the next Buddy Rich or Joe Voda, but if the clock quits ticking for Kasher, he would leave behind an impressive list of other musical accomplishments that his loved ones would be proud of. Kasher is arguably one of the best personal songwriters to come out of Omaha in the past 20 years, alongside his old pal Conor Oberst and local folk legend Simon Joyner. Since ’97 he’s written and produced 12 fulllength albums both as a solo artist and with his bands Cursive and The Good Life, almost all of them released on indie label Saddle Creek Records. An entire generation of Nebraska singer/songwriters credits Kasher both as an influence and a survivor.

music

In a time when musicians are being strangled by the economics of a financially crippled music industry, Kasher has continued to make a living doing nothing but music, though he’s beginning to diversify. Last year he became partners in one of Omaha’s most notorious bars — O’Leaver’s on South Saddle Creek Road. Kasher is a co-owner along with Cursive bandmates Ted Stevens and Matt Maginn, and long-time O’Leaver’s manager Chris Machmuller, lead singer of Saddle Creek band Ladyfinger. “It’s hard to consider it my bar,” Kasher said. “It’s really their bar, but I’m glad to be able to contribute monetarily.” While portfolio diversification was the main reason for joining the partnership, “the first reason was because Matt was interested in buying it,” Kasher said. “We’ve been working together forever and he’s always

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y continued from page 17 wanted to diversify but wanted to do it in a way that seems enjoyable. Who wants to buy a paper company because he hears it’s a good investment?” Kasher said eight or so years ago when Cursive and The Good Life were at a financial peak, people just assumed he was “living high off the hog. I’m basing this on people I run into in other states who have lofty concepts of my success that don’t even remotely match reality,” he said. “When someone writes a book, you figure ‘Well now, they must be loaded. They wrote a book.’ But in reality they’re actually a struggling teacher. These days most people think that I should have another job. I’m pretty much off the radar; nothing I do elicits some kind of suggestion of a lot of success, but I manage to do okay anyway. My career, at this point, has some girth to it.” It also helps that Kasher does more than one musical project at a time. “A lot of why music is still a full-time job is because I tend to do it about twice as much as other musicians in that I release under multiple monikers” he said. “I always knew that (Cursive and The Good Life) kept each other afloat. When I set The Good Life aside it was like I had stopped my bar tending job. The money dwindled.” Not for long. Kasher began releasing solo work with 2010’s The Game of Monogamy and its followup, 2011’s More Songs from the Monogamy Sessions EP. The perennial question with every release is how Kasher decides which material will go toward which project. Cursive music tends to be harder, faster and more acidic than the lighter, more melody-driven tunes heard on Good Life albums. The music for Adult Film falls somewhere in between. Recorded at Steve Albini’s Electrical Audio Studio in Chicago and mixed by John Congleton at Elmwood Recording in Dallas, Adult Film is the most tuneful Kasher project since The Good Life’s Help Wanted Nights in 2007. Songs like failure anthem “A Raincloud Is a Raincloud,” breakup drama “The Willing Cuckold,” and the pounding “A Looping Distress Signal” are as close to straight-up rock songs as Kasher can probably get. Never has keyboards played such a dominant role in one of his productions. From the pounding organ on “Life and Limbo” to the wonky rolling synth on the aforementioned “Truly Freaking Out” that sounds like a Kubrick-ian nightmare to the piano-tightrope walk on “Where Your Heart Lies,” keys are on almost every song.

“We had that in mind from the onset,” Kasher said, pointing to collaborator Patrick Newbery who is credited with organ, keys, synths and horns on the recording. Newbery is joined on the record by Sara Bertuldo (bass, vocals), Dylan Ryan (drums) and a handful of other musicians caught in Kasher’s orbit. So why were the songs on Adult Film used for a solo album? “It’s just what I’m doing right now, and it’s logical,” Kasher said. “I want to get my own name off the ground a bit more. We’re all getting older and if I were to continue to do any of this, it’ll be easier to lean on just myself to put out an album.” That said, there’s little doubt about Cursive’s future. Last year the band released the full-length I Am Gemini on Saddle Creek Records and spent a good part of the year on the road. Saddle Creek

Records said the album had U.S. Soundscans of 10,379 and more than 430,000 track streams on Spotify. Kasher said he was satisfied at how well that record performed. “It gave us (Cursive) a lot of vigor, we had a great time being together and felt good about the finished product,” he said. “We got a chance to play the songs every night to a lot of people who were crazy for it. It was a lot of fun. In the largest sense we’ve become a niche band. We’re kind of a small posse, but a good community.” The future of The Good Life, however, is more in question. “I feel that all the projects are still alive. Some are more dormant than others,” Kasher said. “The Good Life is very dormant now, but we still chat and think about it. I still try to look at

my schedule long-term and think where I might do this or that band. In my head, it’s not dead at all. My impression is that we’ll all get back together in time.” Even if that time is running out. While there is a looming sense of despair on his new record, Kasher said, “We’re still living in a good age. There’s a lot of joy everywhere. Everyone is having babies. We’re on the edge between getting joyful phone calls that someone is in labor and getting calls that someone is in the ICU.” , Tim Kasher plays with Laura Stevenson and The Brigadiers Saturday, Oct. 5, at The Waiting Room, 6212 Maple Street. Showtime is 9 p.m.. Admission is $11. For more information, go to onepercentproductions.com.

GOODWILLOMAHA.ORG 18

OCT. 3 -9, 2013

| THE READER |

music

CALL OR CHECK OUR WEBSITE FOR MOVIE TIMES AND PRICES

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livemusiccalendar

SEND CALENDAR INFORMATION — including addresses, dates, times, costs and phone numbers — to The Reader’s calendar editor. Mail to or drop off information at P.O. Box 7360 Omaha, NE 68107; email to listings@thereader.com; fax to (402) 341.6967. Deadline is 5 p.m. the Thursday prior to issue date.

THURSDAY 3

CANDYE KANE, (Blues) 5:30 pm, 21st Saloon, $12.

READER RECOMMENDS

SHOOTER JENNINGS & REV PEYTON’S BIG DAMN BAND, (Country) 8 pm, Bourbon Theater, $15: Advance $20: Day of Show. NEW MOON SONGWRITERS NIGHT, (Folk/Singer Songwriter) 7 pm, Crescent Moon Coffee, FREE.

READER RECOMMENDS

ELI MARDOCK/CHEYENE MARIE MIZE/BLUE BIRD, (Rock) 9:30 pm, O’Leaver’s Pub, $5. BACK2BACK2BACK SAX, (Jazz) 8 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, $20 at door/$15 presale. MIDWEST SMOOTH JAZZ SOCIETY’S 4TH ANNUAL FUNDRAISER, (Jazz) 6:30 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, $15 ADV/ $20 DOS.

READER RECOMMENDS

BLACK JOE LEWIS, (rock) 8 pm, Bourbon Theater, $12 ADV | $16 DOS LEON JOSEPH LITTLEBIRD & TAG RYAN, (Folk/Singer-Song writer) 7 pm, Pizza Shoppe Collective, Free. CAROLYN MARTIN, (Folk/Singer-Songwriter) 6 pm, Red9, $15. QUASI W/ JEFFERY LEWIS, SEE THROUGH DRESSES, 9 pm, Slowdown, $15. THE RIDE IT OUT TOUR: RADICAL SOMETHING W/ DOWN WITH WEBSTER, (rock) 8 pm, Waiting Room, $13 ADV $30 VIP TWIN FORKS W/ MATRIMONY, SKYPIPER, (indie) 8 pm, Slowdown, $13 ADV | $15 DOS ACOUSTIC MUSIC THURSDAYS!, 8 pm, Two Fine Irishmen, Contact Two Fine Irishmen for cover charge.

READER RECOMMENDS

SONGWRITER DEATH BATTLE 2.0, (Folk/Singer-Songwriter) 9 pm, Waiting Room, $5. CHARLIE BURTON AND THE TRICKLE DOWN BOYS, 6 pm, Zoo Bar, $5. LEVI BRADIS W/ MEGAHERBS AND TBA, 9 pm, Zoo Bar, $5.

FRIDAY 4

CHARM SCHOOL DROPOUTS, (Cover Band) 8 pm, Arena Bar & Grill, Free.

READER RECOMMENDS

IT’S TRUE! (SOLO) W/ EROS & ESCHATON, (Indie) 9 pm, Barley Street Tavern, $5. CHEYENNE MARIE MIZE & ELI MARDOCK, (Indie) 9 pm, Bourbon Theater, $5: 21 and up | $7: 18 and up. LUKE POLIPNICK GROUP CD LISTENING PARTY/DOZENS SUNS TAPE RELEASE, 6 pm, Bourbon Theater, $5: 21 and up | $7: 18 and up. CACTUS FLATS, (Country) 9 pm, Coyote Willy’s, $5. A.D.D. THE BAND, 8 pm, Firewater Grille, Contact Firewater Grille for cover charge.

READER RECOMMENDS

UNITED WITH KENYA | FUNDRAISER + EAST & SOUTH AFRICAN DANCE SOIREE, (DJ/Electronic) 10 pm, House Of Loom, $5 Door Donation. KARAOKE THEATRE, 8:30 pm, House Of Loom, Free. CALLOWS, SPENCER GREGG, 9 pm, Knickerbockers, Contact Knickerbockers for cover charge. JOE WATSON, (Country) 8 pm, Louis Bar and Grill, Free.

READER RECOMMENDS

SMOOTH BLUES JAZZ W/ GEORGE WALKER, (Blues) 9 pm, McKenna’s Booze, Blues & BBQ, Free. ONYX - FEATURING THE GIRLS OF WGO, 8 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, Free. LEON JOSEPH LITTLEBIRD, (Folk/Singer-Songwriter) 7 pm, Pizza Shoppe Collective, Free. CACTUS HILL, (Cover Band) 9 pm, Red9.

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| THE READER |

music listings

ALICE SWEET ALICE (KC), IN THE ATTACK, SKYMAN, & BREAK MAIDEN, (Rock) 8 pm, Shamrock’s Pub & Grill, Contact shamrock’s for cover charge. EYEBALL PRESENTS HEY MARSEILLES W/ THE APACHE RELAY, THE BIG DEEP, (Indie) 9 pm, Slowdown, $10 ADV | $12 DOS. FRIDAY NIGHT MUSIC SERIES: KATIE LOGAN, 7 pm, Soaring Wings Vineyard, Free.

READER RECOMMENDS

HAR MAR SUPERSTAR W/ LIZZO & SNAKE ISLAND, (Rock) 9 pm, Waiting Room, $10 ADV | $12 DOS.

READER RECOMMENDS

JOSH HOYER AND THE SHADOWBOXERS W/ A FEROCIOUS JUNGLE CAT (FORMERLY MMNTM), (Blues) 9 pm, Zoo Bar, $8. PADDYWHACK, 5 pm, Zoo Bar, Contact the Zoo Bar for cover charge.

SATURDAY 5

HOTT2TROTT, (Cover Band) 9 pm, Arena Bar & Grill, FREE. JOE WATSON, (country) 8 pm, Louis Bar and Grill, Free WINNEBAGO WOMAN W/ THE SUB-VECTORS AND THE SUPERBYTES, (Indie) 9 pm, Barley Street Tavern, $5. CHEYENNE MARIE MIZE & ELI MARDOCK, (indie) 9 pm, Bourbon Theater, $5: 21 and up | $7: 18 and up.

READER RECOMMENDS

TEN CLUB: PEARL JAM TRIBUTE BAND, (Cover Band) 9 pm, Bourbon Theater, $5: 21 and up | $7: 18 and up. SUNDAY DANCING WITH SWITCHBAK, (Country) 8 pm, Coyote Willy’s, Free. KARAOKE, 8 pm, Firewater Grille, Contact Firewater Grille for cover charges. MARILYN MAYE SINGS THE AMERICAN SONGBOOK, 8 pm, Holland Performing Arts Center, $19.00 - $83.00.

READER RECOMMENDS

CHURCH OF TOMORROW’S 2ND ANNUAL BOWIE BALL “OH! YOU PRETTY THINGS”, (DJ/Electronic) 10 pm, House Of Loom, $5. GUITAR WOLF, COATHANGERS, COWARD, GHOST RUNNERS, (Rock) 9 pm, Knickerbockers, $13 ADV $15 DOS. SECRET WEAPON, (Cover Band) 11 am, Loose Moose, Contact Loose Moose for cover charge. BLACK HAT JONES, (Rock) 8 pm, Louis Bar and Grill, Free. GOON SALOON/ROUTINE ESCORTS/GRAMPS, (Rock) 9:30 pm, O’Leaver’s Pub, $5. FOOTBALL SATURDAY WITH AVARICIOUS!, 8 pm, Red9, Contact Red 9 for cover charge. 5TH URBAN GROOVE PROJECT, 8 pm, Shamrock’s Pub & Grill, Contact shamrock’s for cover charge.

READER RECOMMENDS

LANGHORNE SLIM & THE LAW W/ JONNY FRITZ, (Indie) 9 pm, Slowdown, $10. PLAINSONG FOLK FESTIVAL, (Folk/Singer-Songwriter) 4:30 pm, Sprague/Martell Community Center, Contact plainsongfolk@gmail.com for cover charges. THE PERSONICS WEEKEND BASH!, (Cover Band) 8 pm, Two Fine Irishmen, Contact Two Fine Irishmen for cover charge.

READER RECOMMENDS

TIM KASHER W/ LAURA STEVENSON & THE BRIGADIERS, 9 pm, Waiting Room, $11.

SUNDAY 6

MARILYN MAYE SINGS THE AMERICAN SONGBOOK, 2 pm, Holland Performing Arts Center, $19.00 - $83.00.

READER RECOMMENDS THE BLIND SHAKE W/ SNAKE ISLAND!, (Rock) 10 pm, O’Leaver’s Pub, $5. O’LEAVER’S OPEN MIC NIGHT, 9 pm, O’Leaver’s Pub, Free. GAITHER VOCAL BAND, 2 pm, Omaha Civic Auditorium/ Music Hall, $34.55 - $38.65. ACOUSTIC MUSIC SUNDAYS: RYAN MCLEAY, 2 pm, Soaring Wings Vineyard, Free. SUPERSUCKERS W/ HELLBOUND GLORY, (Rock) 9 pm, Waiting Room, $15.

MONDAY 7

READER RECOMMENDS OPEN MIC & SONGWRITER SHOWCASE, (Folk/Singer Songwriter) 9 pm, Barley Street Tavern, FREE. FIRST CUT INDUSTRY NIGHT W/DJ KNOWTORIOUS, (DJ/Electronic) 9 pm, House Of Loom, Contact House of Loom for cover charge. GOOCH & HIS BIG BAND, (Cover Band) 8 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, Free. BIG BAND MONDAY FEATURING MIKE GURCUILLO AND HIS LAS VEGAS LAB BAND, (Jazz) 6:30 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, FREE. OPEN MIC NIGHT! AT RED9, 8 pm, Red9, Free. WAITING ROOM MUSIC QUIZ, 8 pm, Waiting Room, FREE.

READER RECOMMENDS

FRANK TURNER & THE SLEEPING SOULS W/ THE SMITH STREET BAND & KOO KOO KANGA ROO, 8 pm, Waiting Room, $15 ADV | $17 DOS.

READER RECOMMENDS

PIANO HOUR W/ EMILY BASS, 5 pm, Zoo Bar, contact the Zoo Bar for cover charge. ZOO BAR HOUSE BAND, 7 pm, Zoo Bar, $3.

TUESDAY 8

SOUNDRABBIT, (Rock) 9 pm, Bourbon Theater, $5: 21 and up | $7: 18 and up. NICK DAHLQUIST, 9 pm, Knickerbockers, Contact Knickerbockers for cover charge.

READER RECOMMENDS

KILLER BLOW, PEACH KELLI POP, AND S. PRATT AND THE SWEATS, (Rock) 8 pm, O’Leaver’s Pub, $5.

READER RECOMMENDS

ZAPPA PLAYS ZAPPA, (Rock) 8 pm, Rococo Theater, Price: $62.50/$39.50.

READER RECOMMENDS

GETO BOYS W/ BIG MISTA, (Hip-Hop/Rap) 9 pm, Waiting Room, $25. JAZZOCRACY, (Jazz) 6 pm, Zoo Bar, Free. TROUBADOUR W/ MIKE ELSNER, CHANTY STOVALL, NICK WESTRA AND JAKE GARDNER, 9 pm, Zoo Bar, $4.

WEDNESDAY 9

CRASH & BURN BLUES JAM, (Blues) 6 pm, Barley Street Tavern, Free. TROUBADOUR W/ MIKE ELSENER, CHANTY STOVALL, NICK WESTRA AND JAKE GARDNER, 9 pm, Zoo Bar, $4

READER RECOMMENDS

BEATS ANTIQUE W/ ILL-ESHA & SORNE, 9 pm, Bourbon Theater, $18: Advance | $20: Day of Show. DICEY RILEYS, 7 pm, Brazen Head Irish Pub, Free: 21 and up | $5: 18 and up. TRACY SKRETTA, (Rock) 8 pm, Firewater Grille, Contact Firewater Grille for cover charge. ERIC LIU, 7:30 pm, Holland Performing Arts Center, Free. WARPED WAX W/TURNTABLIST CMB, (DJ/Electronic) 8 pm, House Of Loom, Free. THE PERSUADERS, 8 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, Free.

READER RECOMMENDS

GUTTERMOUTH / AGENT ORANGE W/ PINATA PROTEST, (Punk) 8 pm, Slowdown, $13.

READER RECOMMENDS

SENSES FAIL W/ FOR THE FALLEN DREAMS, EXPIRE, & BEING AS AN OCEAN, (Rock) 8 pm, Waiting Room, $15 ADV | $17 DOS. DJ RELIC, (DJ/Electronic) 9 pm, Zoo Bar, Free. RJ MISCHO, 6 pm, Zoo Bar, Contact the Zoo Bar for cover charge.

BY B.J. HUCHTEMANN

Romping, Stomping, Swinging

T

hursday, Oct. 3, catch the award-winning vocalist Candye Kane with incendiary guitarist Laura Chavez and their great band at The 21st Saloon. Their live show and their latest disc Coming Out Swingin’ showcase Cane and Chavez, two of the best blues artists working today. They also perform at Lincoln’s Zoo Bar Wednesday, Oct. 2, 6-9 p.m. The 21st Saloon hosts a fall blues festival next Thursday, Oct. 10, beginning at 5 p.m. with music inside and outside. Performing are Blind Pig Records’ Sena Ehrhardt, rising Texas guitar star Jason Elmore & Hoodoo Witch and R.J. Mischo. Elmore is a friend of Jim Suhler’s and the two bands often share bills in their hometown Dallas area. Elmore was voted “Best Blues” artist in the 2012 Dallas Observer Music Awards. Elmore’s new disc Tell You What has been nominated for a Blues Blast Music Award for Best Blues-Rock Album of the Year and has received frequent airplay on Mike Jacobs’ “Blues in the Afternoon” program heard Mondays, 1-3 p.m., on KIOS 91.5 FM. See jasonelmore.net. Harmonica great and soulful vocalist R.J. Mischo has not been seen in Omaha for a quite a few years. His 2012

hoodoo

release Make it Good (Delta Groove) was his 10th solo recording, “a high-octane fueled album—complete with 100% original material—backed by a formidable stable of talent” including the late, remarkable guitarist Nick Curran. It will be a treat to have Mischo back in Omaha. Birds Above Guitarland: Celebrated roots guitarist Pete Anderson is best known as the longtime guitarist and producer/arranger for Dwight Yoakam, along with working with artists like Lucinda Williams and Rosie Flores. Anderson is a Grammy Award-winning, multi-platinum selling artist who has maintained a successful solo career. His latest release is a rich, stomping blues romp with fat, tight, horn-laden arrangements along with his wicked guitar work. It’s a must for blues fans. The disc Birds Above Guitarland is on Anderson’s own Little Dog Records label and dropped in late September. See peteanderson.com. Hot Notes: Charlie Burton & The Trickle Down Boys are featured at Lincoln’s Zoo Bar Thursday, Oct. 3, 6-9 p.m. Josh Hoyer & The Shadowboxers hit the Zoo stage Friday, Oct. 4, 9 p.m. Excellent harmonica player and vocalist R.J. Mischo is onstage at the Zoo next Wednesday, Oct. 9, 6-9 p.m. See rjblues.com. The extraordinary slide guitar of Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band opens for Shooter Jennings at Lincoln’s Bourbon Theatre Thursday, Oct. 3, 8 p.m. ,

HOODOO is a weekly column focusing on blues, roots, Americana and occasional other music styles with an emphasis on live music performances. Hoodoo columnist B.J. Huchtemann is a Reader senior contributing writer and veteran music journalist who has covered the local music scene for nearly 20 years. Follow her blog at hoodoorootsblues.blogspot.com.

PLAY! symphony

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| THE READER |

OCT. 3 - 9, 2013

21

Cutting Room provides breaking local and national movie news … complete with added sarcasm. Send any relevant information to film@ thereader.com. Check out Ryan on Movieha!, a weekly half-hour movie podcast (movieha.libsyn.com/rss), catch him on the radio on CD 105.9 (cd1059.com) on Fridays around 7:30 a.m. and on KVNO 90.7 (kvno.org) at 8:30 a.m. on Fridays and follow him on Twitter (twitter. com/thereaderfilm).

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OCT. 3 -9, 2013

delivers entertainment and not just regrettable elected officials! You’ll notice there’s no mention of Olivia Wilde’s character, Suzy, in that summary. Nor is there mention of Alexandra Maria Lara, who plays Lauda’s wife Marlene. There’s a reason for that. Suzy is such an afterthought that when she is shown watching the final race of the season, you’ve almost forgotten she existed. And Marlene, who seemingly altered the foundational personality of Lauda in real life and thus indirectly changed the outcome of the racing season, has something like three spoken lines after her clever and playful introduction. The only time any two women are on screen together is when Hunt has a menage a trois, which I’m pretty sure isn’t part of the Bechtel Test. That aside, the film is briskly paced, with racing scenes that somehow don’t feel repetitive despite the fact that racing is basically doing the same thing over and over again as fast as you can. Hemsworth and Brühl are both in tip-top form, with the latter standing toe-totoe with Thor’s performance, despite wearing the world’s silliest prosthetic overbite. It’s not quite a sports movie (and not just because some don’t see racing as a sport) and not quite a character sketch, yet somehow Rush is a photofinish away from being very good. GRADE: B+

REPORTCARD

n Our friends in Colorado are facing actual flooding (donate if you can), but the only overflow here so far is from Film Streams, whose banks are spilling with cool fall/winter entertainment! First up, in honor of his new film Nebraska (a title I’m particular to), Film Streams’ repertory series running from Oct 4 to Dec 26 was curated by Alexander Payne. Payne is described as a “cinephile,” a term I don’t like because it sounds like someone who wants to do dirty stuff with celluloid, and his choices reflect that. From Walkabout to Tokyo Story, Payne’s choices include works by directors Michelangelo Antonioni, Akira Kurosawa and Yasujirô Ozu. Hit up filmstreams. org for specific s h o w times so you can hit up the theater for films ALEXANDER PAYNE that hit Payne right in his inspiration parts. n As if bringing the Payne wasn’t enough, Film Streams is also bringing two special screenings to the Ruth Sokolof Theater. On Oct 24, the theater is buddying up with The Nebraska Veteran Leader Corps to screen Lioness, about women who served in combat roles in Iraq before they were technically allowed to. I would not mess with those women. The post-screening discussion will examine the long overdue policy changes that finally treat women soldiers simply as soldiers, even if there are ongoing issues of abuse and systemic coverup. That may be a bit much to get into in a film column though, so let’s talk about the second screening. Growing Cities is a documentary about urban farming made by folks from Omaha. The three filmmakers, Dan Susman, Andrew Monbouquette and Brent Lubbert, will be on hand for a post-show discussion on Oct 29. Only serious gardening questions now: nobody ask about growing the sticky-icky-icky plant that our friends in Colorado enjoy. —Ryan Syrek

H

ere in ‘Murica, when we watch cars go round in circles while Kid Rock’s “Bawitaba” plays in the background, we have the decency to let the walking billboards who are driving vehicular billboards have a roof on their car. That way, they only die sometimes, as opposed to Europe’s Formula 1 circuit where they die all the freakin’ time. Formula 1 was created by people whose first attempt at creating a sport was “cover yourself in honey and punch a bear.” Director Ron Howard and writer Peter Morgan ask a good question with Rush, which is: What kind of broken human being straps themselves to a rocket coffin? To investigate, they turned to the sport’s greatest rivalry between Niki Lauda (Daniel Brühl) and James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth). The movie was made in collaboration with Lauda, so the only purely fictional elements are Hemsworth’s abs. What’s interesting is that Morgan and Howard have created a rare sports movie that bucks the formula: you simultaneously root for two competitors. Hunt is a reckless, womanizing boozehound while Lauda is a walking incarnation of precise Austrian engineering. For Hunt, the exhilaration of peeing on death is the ultimate high; for Lauda, possibly dying is a regrettable part of the job, one he will endure so long as the mortality risk remains at 20% or below. You can easily see how the two men funhouse mirror each other, and how their down-to-the-wire season forces them into exaggerated versions of themselves. The best perk about Americans not knowing a “spot of Earl Grey” about Formula 1 is that most audiences won’t know who won in real life! For once, ignorance

Blue Jasmine B+ A show-stopping performance for Cate Blanchett, who shows no signs of stopping. We’re the Millers C Classic comedy misfire: The trailers have all the funny. READER RECOMMENDS

Prisoners B Icky, taut and thrilling, this is the feel-bad movie of the fall!

| THE READER |

film

ON DVD

This is the End B+ Vulgar, insane and easily one of the funniest movies of the year. Iron Man 3 ATurns out, if you have a script, you can make a killer superhero movie. World War Z CAdapted from the book, in that they kept the title. And barely that.

overtheedge

COLUMN BY TIM MCMAHAN

LEF TOV ER K A S H E R

L

ike the headline says, here’s some leftover wisdom from Tim Kasher that didn’t make it into the feature story on page 17. I thought it would be a shame to leave it on the cutting room floor. For example, nowhere in the feature story did I explain the title of Kasher’s new album, Adult Film, and the origin of its hideous cover art. Hopefully Eric in production has a copy of the artwork to include with this column so you can see just how repulsive it truly is. So gruesome is the cover that I almost dropped the CD’s jewel case when I took it out of the promo mailer’s envelope. The artwork is actually quite simple -- it’s a nude head-and-shoulder photo of Kasher covered in some sort of greasy, slimy substance, as if a giant woman-thing gave birth to him fullgrown only moments prior to the shoot. Mixed in with the shiny, viscous substance are bits of what look like shit or placenta or snot balls. Even Kasher’s well-combed hair lays flat like it hadn’t been washed in a couple weeks. The photo is just straight f***ing gross; so ugly you can practically smell it. The art is made all the more disturbing by the placement of the words ADULT FILM in yellow all-caps on top of a black bar that blocks out Kasher’s eyes, as if to hide his identity even though his name appears right above his head. Creepy. Needless to say, there had to be some sort of meaning behind it. “There’s not a ton to it, and I feel like I suffer when I explain it,” Kasher said sheepishly. “I just quite simply saw the two words ‘adult film’ in my head and I separated them from what they’ve come to mean in our society. I tend to play around with words, and it occurred to me how odd those words were together. They’ve come to mean ‘pornography’ and nothing else. but if they had never been used for pornography they would conjure this gross thought; this film that people collect that gets wrinkled and corse as it goes old and untouched. “I think (in that context) it’s fitting for the album’s subject matter. That meaning casts a wide net. It’s a catch-all for mortality and getting older, but also about

Film Streams at the Ruth Sokolof Theater 14th & Mike Fahey Street (formerly Webster Street) More info & showtimes 402.933.0259 · filmstreams.org Facebook & Twitter: @filmstreams

career and dating and aging and whatever pursuit you happen to be in.” He said said he’s “a little uneasy with the porno aspect” of the title. As for the guck, “It’s Vaseline and dirt; potting soil and some mulch and some green dye to give it a bit of a sheen.” Aren’t you glad I asked? At one point during our interview I also asked Kasher about his vocals on the album’s roaring, rolling opener “American Lit,” and told him it reminded me of some-

This week! Enough Said First-Run (PG-13) Dir. Nicole Holofcener. With Julia Louis-Dreyfus and, in his last starring role, the late James Gandolfini. The Washington Post calls it “feisty, funny, fizzy, and deeply wise.” In a World . . . First-Run (R) Dir. Lake Bell. Through Thursday, October 3 Last chance! A comedy set in the competitive world of movie-trailer voice-overs.

thing from Slowdown Virginia, one of Kasher’s first bands from way back in ’93 that some say was a starting point for what would become the Saddle Creek scene. “That’s a relief to me,” Kasher said. “I sing lower almost always now. I’ve been having vocal issues over the last four years. I write in low registers just in case. I just can’t stay on top of it. I don’t know when it’s going to go out next, with bronchitis or something.” That was a surprise. So was Kasher’s comments about Help Wanted Nights. I mentioned that Adult Film

was my favorite Kasher album since that classic 2007 album by his other band, The Good Life. It turns out that Help Wanted Nights also was notable to Kasher, but for a different reason. “It was the first time that I got bad reviews,” he said. “It knocked me down for like two days, and then for the next few records I watched (the reviews) a little bit more than before. It became a sick curiosity, and I got a little obsessed.” Kasher said he eventually got past his preoccupation with critics. “I’m not going to do that anymore,” he said. “It’s not that I’m against critics, it’s that they’re not the ones who I should be writing for.” Help Wanted Nights was actually a sort of soundtrack to an unproduced script of the same name. Written a few years prior to the album’s release, it was the first script Kasher tried to get produced, catching the interest of a handful of Los Angeles money people. Still, six years later, the script remains unshot. “I set it aside just before I began working on (The Game of ) Monogamy (Kasher’s 2010 debut solo album). It had some renewed interest for a few months.” Kasher hasn’t given up his silver-screen dreams. “I have another script being worked on to go into production,” he said. The new one is about couple swapping -- ironic, considering the title of this new album. Kasher said the movie business is “a hard game with a lot of money involved I keep writing and handing stuff out, and here and there get reactions. I’ll cautiously kind of let it play itself out and see what happens.” One last thing I forgot to mention in the feature: Adult Film doesn’t come out until next Tuesday, Oct. 8, on Saddle Creek Records (of course). You should pick up a copy when you go to see Kasher and his band celebrate its release at The Waiting Room Saturday night. Whatever you do, don’t judge the record by its cover. , Over The Edge is a weekly column by Reader senior contributing writer Tim McMahan focused on culture, society, the media and the arts. Email Tim at tim.mcmahan@gmail.com.

Salinger First-Run (PG-13) Dir. Shane Salerno. Through Thursday, October 3 Last chance!

Alexander Payne Presents

Bollywood & Beyond

Museum Hours First-Run Dir. Jem Cohen. Starts Friday, October 4

Le rayon vert 1986 (R)

Monsoon Wedding 2001 (R) Dir. Mira Nair. October 3

A meditation on friendship, art, and Vienna. A visual feast!

AP says: “I haven’t seen it since it came out, but its spell has never left me.”

Coming Soon 2013 Local Filmmakers Showcase Blue is the Warmest Color (NC-17) Nebraska First-Run (R) Inside Llewyn Davis First-Run (R)

Dir. Eric Rohmer.

Oct 4, 6 & 8

The Met: Live

Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin Dir. Fiona Shaw. October 5 (Live) & 9 (Encore)

Alloy Orchestra plays live score to

He Who Gets Slapped October 5 | 7 pm | tickets at filmstreams.org

over the edge

| THE READER |

OCT. 3 -9, 2013

23

newsoftheweird

T H E WO R L D G O N E F R E A K Y B Y C H U C K S H E P H E R D W I T H I L LU S T R AT I O N S B Y T O M B R I S C O E

Home Sweet Home

“W

ith its neatly cut lawns and luscious tropical vegetation,” wrote a BBC News reporter in July, Miracle Village, Fla., is an “idyllic rural community” of 200 residents -- about half of whom are registered sex offenders, attracted to the settlement near Lake Okeechobee because laws and ordinances elsewhere in Florida harshly restrict where they can live (e.g., not within a half-mile of a school or park). Incumbent residents might have been apprehensive in 2009 when a pastor started the local rehabilitation ministry (one even called it a “nightmare on Elm Street”), but since then, no one could recall a single impropriety involving an offender, and lately, 10 to 20 more applications arrive each week (screened to keep out diagnosed pedophiles and those with a history of drugs or violence). Can’t Possibly Be True Dana Carter’s debut as principal of Calimesa Elementary School in California’s San Bernardino County was quite inauspicious, as parents quickly objected to his August policy of requiring kids to drop to one knee when addressing him. One parent said her daughter was forced to kneel while awaiting his attention and then to rise only when he lifted his arms. Carter said he would discontinue the policy and insisted he had instituted it for “safety” and not because he imagined himself as royalty. Many consumers already distrust food imports from China, but the U.S. Department of Agriculture nonetheless announced recently (and “quietly,” according to NPR) that it would exempt four Chinese companies altogether from USDA inspections of their processed chicken exports. The changes are part of the department’s money-saving streamlining that also cuts back domestic regulation -- proposals that have already drawn criticism from the Government Accountability Office because they would replace many on-site

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| THE READER |

weird news

USDA inspectors with employees of the food-processing plants themselves. It was a tough sell for performance artists Doug Melnyk and Ian Mozdzen to defend their controversial show at the Winnipeg Fringe Festival in July. (Wrote one reviewer: “What I saw (on the stage) were not one, not two, but three mayonnaise enemas. (I) do not need to see any more mayonnaise enemas for the rest of my lifetime.”) Explained Melnyk, to a Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reporter in July, if all you’re trying to do is “figure out what people want and you make it for them, that’s not art. ... (Y)ou’re just a shoemaker.” Unclear on the Concept In August, the Mother Nature Network website showcased an array of camping gear seemingly designed for the daintiest of those ostensibly “roughing” it. The Blofield outdoor couch inflates in minutes to produce a facsimile of a Las Vegas lounge sofa. The Rolla Roaster’s 42-inch-long steel fork assures elegance (and evenness) in marshmallow-roasting. For fashion-conscious backwoods women, Teva makes high-heeled hiking sandals ($330). The mother of all Swiss army knives, by Wenga, has so many gadgets that it suggests a parody of a Swiss army knife. To be a camper is to sleep in a tent, though, and why not the trailer-mounted Opera tent, including hardwood floors and a wine cooler? A July direct-mail campaign by Canada’s Conservative Party, intended to show concern for the disabled population, might have fallen short, according to a Toronto Star report. The first wave of brochures, “Supporting Jobs for All Canadians” (meaning the disabled as well), featured the well-known wheelchair symbol and a message in a series of Braille dots. However, the brochure was useless to blind recipients, who could neither see the dots nor read them, as the dots were printed on a flat surface. By her own admission, Joan Hoyt, 61, of St. Louis, has difficulty writing, is easily distracted, needs frequent breaks, and “reads about 2 1/2 times slower than her peers” -- yet wants to be a lawyer. She filed a lawsuit recently against the Law School Admission Council for special accommodations to take the standardized admissions test after the

COPYRIGHT 2013 CHUCK SHEPHERD. Visit Chuck Shepherd daily at NewsoftheWeird. blogspot.com or NewsoftheWeird.com. Send Weird News to WeirdNewsTips@yahoo.com or P.O. Box 18737, Tampa, FL 33679. Illustrations by Tom Briscoe (smallworldcomics.com).

council offered to grant her “only” 156 extra minutes for the exam. She also demanded a room by herself with a “white noise” machine and the ability to bring a computer and food and drinks to the exam. (States have made similar accommodations for bar exams -- but those applicants have already successfully endured the intellectual rigors of law school.) Inexplicable Is oral sex permitted in Orthodox Judaism? If so, must any lubricant used be kosher (or is kosher required only for substances ingested into the body)? These questions were not answered by California’s Trigg Laboratories, which decided recently to vie for a kosher label for eight lines of Ecstasy lubricant under its Wet label -- and, following an inspection by the Rabbinical Council of California, was granted it. Many authorities believe that nonkosher products can be used if, like lipstick, they are “applied” but not ingested. Because We Can, That’s Why: Two onetime roommates at the University of Michigan announced in August that they have developed a smartphone app to accommodate the questionable number of people who seek an easy way to share leftover food on restaurant plates (to save it from wasteful discarding). Using smartphones’ location service, one diner could offer to clean another’s plate or have a stranger rush to his own table for scraps. “We’re not gonna make millions,” one of the developers told NPR in July. People Different From Us Jian Yang, 33, a media executive in Singapore, told Reuters in September that he was concerned about the diminishing respect the Mattel Corp. is giving Barbie, reducing production in favor of trendier dolls like those modeled after the “Twilight” characters. Yang is apparently protective of his collection of more than 6,000 Barbies that dominate his row house -- which he estimates has cost him the equivalent of nearly $400,000 since he took up the obsession at age 13. He said his parents have come to accept his passion, but acknowledged that he had a few “ex-girlfriends” who felt “insecure” around his supermodels. Yang also owns about 3,000 non-Barbies, and on his last trip to New York bought 65 more.

Perspective It is now well-known how America’s wounded warriors are victimized by the huge backlog of unaddressed Department of Veterans Affairs disability claims, with waits of many months or years. Nonetheless, the department is so proud of shrinking the backlog that it has begun to issue bonus checks to bureaucrats who meet the department’s numerical goals in case-reduction (according to data from the Office of Personnel Management reported in the Washington Post in August). However, another Washington Post story, in September, reported that backlog reduction likely resulted merely from quickly approving the easier cases -- while the roster of serious or complicated cases continued to grow, along with appeals of decisions too-hastily made by the bonus-clutching department employees. Undignified Deaths (1) A 40-year-old woman was killed in a near-headon collision in August in Spring Lake, Fla., while joy-riding on a back road at night on her dirt bike. She was accidentally hit by her husband, who was also joy-riding, in his all-terrain vehicle, and who also died. (2) A 50-year-old man in Berne, N.Y., was killed in August when, driving an all-terrain vehicle, he virtually decapitated himself on nearly invisible wire strung across a road as one of a series of booby traps he had installed to protect his marijuana plants. A News of the Weird Classic (November 2010) About 20 percent of Japan’s adult-video market is now “elder porn,” with each production featuring one or more studly senior, and Shigeo Tokuda, 76, among the most popular. He told Toronto’s Globe and Mail in October (2010) that he still “performs” physically “without Viagra,” in at least one role a month opposite much younger women. His wife and adult daughter learned only two years ago, by accident, of his late-onset career (which began at age 60 when a filmmaker hired him for his “pervert’s face”). Tokuda figures the “elder porn” genre will grow with Japan’s increasing senior population. ,

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OCT. 3 - 9, 2013

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appy New Moon in Libra, at sunset on Friday (the day of Venus), October 4th. Let Venus come between us. Enjoy the beauty of autumn ’til the Full Moon in Aries on October 18th; the beginning of the night of the year. Venus moves into Sagittarius, the sign of prophecy, on Moonday the 7th, and on Tuesday, it kisses the Moon at dawn. I see/prophesize clothes strewn in chaotic confusion all over the hills, dales, parks, trails, hallways, highways, ball-ways and bi-ways of humanity to help us keep our sanity…for here come the “blues.” Remember, “The Blues Had a Baby and They Named it Rock ’n’ Roll,” from the king of da blues, Muddy Waters. Make music outta it. “Boogie Chillen,” from the voice of the blues, John Lee Hooker. “Let Venus Come Between Us,” from the golden troll of rock ’n’ roll. —MOJOPOPlanetPower.com g LIBRA (9.22-10.21) Kick it now! With Mercury in your 2nd House, you’ve got a/the moneymaking idea, but get it in (Mercury in Scorpio! Gotcha!) -to play before Mercury retrogrades on October 21st, $ugge$ting that you pau$e for da cau$e and regroup for 3 week$. Tuesday the 8th is/will be the day to start your expression of “newfound freedom.” Your ruler Venus just entered Sagittarius to give a loving embrace to the Moon, kicking off your/a new affair. Boys: Kick it hard and you’ll go far! Girls: Kick it, lick it and stick it like a candy bar. h SCORPIO (10.22-11.20) Read Libra. It’s in your lingo, Dingo. The Libra New Moon is in your 12th House of the subconscious, called by the ancients “the house of self-undoing,” possibly proving you to be your own worst enemy. Continue betting small. Saturn is in Scorpio, exalted in Libra, doubling its current pressure. You’ll feel it on the afternoon of the 8th. Do your work first. All this while you’re trying to fall in love. If you never experience “da blues,” you’d never appreciate or know what love is, right? Get/be ready for your/a pop quiz! i SAGITTARIUS (11.21-12.20) This month starts (y)our last chance to fast. Yeah, I didn’t think you’d hear that. Oh, well. Channel all that energy into cleaning, fixing, redesigning and redecorating your pad for these coming 2 seasons. I see you scoring HEAVY at a garage sale…perhaps your$? Check out Libra (above) for your (love?) tempo. How does the MOJO know? j CAPRICORN (12.21-1.18) You’ve got it made… All lined up, in place, balanced, your ducks in a row and your ruler Saturn in Scorpio — where it feels real good! (Ever notice how an exclamation point looks phallic?) The morning of Tuesday, the 8th, you’ll know. You’ll hear music to your ears, allaying all your fears; the Sun and Moon in your 10th House of fortune, fame and form (Libra), making it your game ’til 2014, when you’re due to be reborn.

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k AQUARIUS (1.19-2.17) Tired of waiting? Champing at the bit? Ask an Aries how they(’re) handle (-ing) it. Save your output ’til next week, for the 12th, 13th and 14th. l PISCES (2.18-3.19) Time to (go to) work. Make something beautiful (out of it). Balance of design will be the key. Jupiterians: (Your favorite color is royal blue.) Please read Sagittarius and see what applies to you… a ARIES (3.20-4.18) One more long week to serve the king/queen, and then it’s time to return to your own home scene, as your ruler Mars moves into down-home Virgo at dawn on Tuesday, October 15. Were you born around April Fool’s? Hang onto your jewels. Remember, ’til mid-December the unexpected is lurking in da shadows/background all around your own hometown, lookin’/waitin’ fer ya. Hint: The study of Uranian subjects like astrology could/would help you potentialize your creative psychology. Schedule an appointment with me, or someone like me. —Michael P. P.S., the first one’s free… b TAURUS (4.19-5.19) Tired of looking at yourself (as a sexual object) in the mirror yet? Venus moves out of your opposite sign of Scorpio — the one you love to hate (or is it hate to love?) — and moves into the spiritually-inclined philosophy of Sagittarius around lunchtime on October 7th, where it will dwell ’til the first week in November. Remember, there’s gonna be money (8th House) in it fer thee(!). c GEMINI (5.20-6.19) You’ve got 2 short weeks to get it together before the harsh winds and waters of October bowl you over (Mercury retrogrades in early Scorpio)! It’s going to affect and confuse your money issues (8th House), so take care of business — or break out the tissues. Sniff… Sniff… d CANCER (6.20-7.21) Happy New Moon in Libra at 7:35 p.m., Omax DST, on the 4th. It’ll be time (October 7th/8th) to let Venus come between us… Cupid’s not stupid, and he’s aimin’/shootin’ straight at choo, to shoot you full of da “boogie woogie.” The word “boogie” comes from African dialect, and may have originally meant “devilishly good,” but what’s “woogie”? Tell me next week, when once again (Inshallah — “if it be the will of Allah”) we speak. e LEO (7.22-8.21) Hang loose with your friends, dress nicely (Libra) and trim your split ends. Enjoy your usual pastimes, full of your rhythm and rhymes. All the action’s in your 3rd House of everyday life, the world and people, your brothers and sisters and your tribe — including tho$e you have to bribe. A king/ queen without $ubject$/attendant$ remains a hermit. f VIRGO (8.22-9.21) Time to read Gemini for the tempo; but in your case Mercury is transiting through your 3rd House, so watch your words and deeds between your sisters and brothers, fathers and mothers, close friends and others’ needs. Two weeks to watch and fix the slips from your lips… ,

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The Reader Oct. 3, 2013