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Mittenfest p17 The bands return to Bona Sera for a bonafide benefit

p6 Holiday Gift Guide ‘Tis the season to shop locally

ONE film, p24 infinite paths

Covering spiritual ground



2016  /


December 2016 vol. 26/no. 12

Mittenfest 17

Bands return to Bona Sera for a bonafide benefit

24 film: count to ONE

When a yoga teacher meets a world-renowned religious scholar, he brings his camera by Nan Bauer

25 art: Sculpture on North Campus A year-round outdoor sculpture garden offers art across the river by Louis W. Meldman

26 theater:A Dickens Christmas Reimaging A Christmas Carol at EMU by Jacqueline Bull

Fred Thomas, a staple in the Michigan music scene, will perform at Mittenfest.

Holiday Gift Guide 6 Find perfect presents from

unique, independent businesses

A Very Ann Arbor Art Tour 12 Visit artist venue’s for a local art adventure by Jacqueline Bull

food: 14 Yee Dumpings Changed Me Looks like Chinese food, tastes like Chinese food— acts like a therapist by Sonny Forrest

41 cannabis Chronic updates By Vic Tanney

45 astrology 46 crossword Last Month’s most read stories on


1 2 3



Adams Street Publishing Co.  Monkey Business Lucky Monkey Tattoo has expanded after purchasing buildings at 3024 Packard Rd. in Ann Arbor and 9541 Main St. in Whitmore Lake.  Guess who’s coming back to Chelsea? Big Boy!! That’s right, the location at 1610 S. Main St. will soon reopen under NEW management so be sure to check out our website ( so we can let you know what day and time to go and get your Big Boy on!  Moving On Up! St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor Hospital is officially a level 1 trauma center! According to the American College of Surgeons, this hospital can handle just about any medical situation you bring their way with the highest level of care and resources. From trauma care to prevention and rehabilitation, St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor has got you covered! Move over U of M health system, Detroit Receiving Hospital, Henry Ford Hospital and Beaumont Hospital-Royal Oak, a new sheriff is in town!  Awesome Food! Who can resist the taste of grilled chicken with sautéed vegetables, sesame-ginger glaze and sesame seeds? Most people can’t...which is why we are pleased to announce Olga’s Kitchen has opened a new location at 3500 Washtenaw Avenue! So whenever you get the desire to indulge in tasty food make sure to stop in! And, for those that just don’t have the time to come by, no worries! Olga’s Kitchen will come to you!  Smoothie Nirvana! The Acai Berry Boost, the Chicken Apple Club and the Mango Magic Smoothie are just a few of the delightful treats you will find at the Tropical Smoothie Cafe at 3400 Washtenaw Avenue. Don’t believe us? Check it out for yourself at the grand opening on Dec. 8th! Talk about a good time? There will be food and free giveaways! One hundred lucky people will have the opportunity to win free smoothies for a year! That’s like one smoothie a week for 52 weeks!! Two people could walk away with a Samsung 50-inch television! The Tropical Smoothie Cafe is the place to be on December 8th! Questions? Call store owner Ken Patton at 734-418-2333.  A Taste of Detroit The Motown Multigrain is moving to Ann Arbor along with most of the other mouth watering baked goods from the Detroit-based bakery, Avalon International Breads. The University of Michigan Alum, co-founder and CEO Jackie Victor has decided to share the yummy goodness and open a location (Avalon Hearth and Soul Café and Kitchen) in Ann Arbor.



2016  /

What is your favorite holiday cocktail? Publisher/Editor in Chief

Collette Jacobs ( Anything with peppermint

Co-publisher/Chief Financial Officer Mark I. Jacobs ( a Tom and Jerry


Assignment Editor: Zach Marburger ( Mulled Cider (with rum) Assignment Editor: Swani Swanigan ( Hot chocolate on the rocks Editorial intern: Jacqueline Bull ( Cranberry Ginger Ale with Vodka Contributing Writers: Sandor Slomovits, Louis Meldman, Tim Malik, Jeff Milo, M.F. DiBella, Rob Brezsny, Tami Sackett, Heidi Philipsen, Evan Rosen, Cammie Finch, Ken Wachsberger, Nan Bauer, Chris Crowder, Sonny Forrest, Vic Tanny, Adam Theisen, Lauren James, Sarah Matthews, Athena Cocoves

Digital Media Saul Jacobs ( Gin tastes like a Christmas tree, right?


Production Manager: Imani Lateef ( Coffee with cake! Senior Designer: Leah Foley ( Hot chocolate and peppermint schnapps Designer: Anita Tipton ( Anyhting on a beach Design Intern Heidi Liu

Advertising Sales Catherine Bohr ( Christmas Ale with cinnamon sugar rim Sales Coordinator Jen Leach ( Maumee Bay Xmas w/ cinnamon rim Classifieds: Cassie Haddad ( Mulled Wine


Accounting: Robin Armstrong ( Cold Blitzen with cinnamon sugar rim

© 2016 by Adams Street Publishing Co., All rights reserved. 3003 Washtenaw Ave., Suite 3, Ann Arbor, MI 48104, Phone (734) 668-4044, Fax (734) 668-0555. First class subscriptions $30 a year. Distributed throughout Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti and neighboring communities. Also publishers of:


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Gift Cards Available!

Values $10 and up, good for any service! E-Gift Cards also available on our website.

Open 10a - 8p 7 Days a Week 300 W. Huron,

Best of Washtenaw M?DD;H

corner N. First

(734) 623-1951

H; (&', ; 7: ; H IË9>E?9


Zen minimalism

Japanese Flower Arranging, Ikebana, is a disciplined art form where nature and people meet. The Matthaei Botanical Gardens is hosting a class bringing this Japanese art form to Ann Arbor. Led by a certified Ikebana instructor, this class offers a chance to explore beauty, tradition and peacefulness. Registration is required. —JB

Thursday, December 8. 1pm. $20. Matthaei Botanical Gardens, 1800 N Dixboro Rd. 734-647-7600.


HATE A peaceful response

There’s tension in the air and communities are nervous. National rates of hate crimes have risen and accounts of attacks against immigrants, Muslims, and other populations flood our social media feeds. What will you do if you saw some get attacked for who they are? Learn how to respond during Bystander Intervention Training, hosted by the Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice. Sheri Wander, trainer for Meta Peace Team, will lead the session, showing attendees how to de-escalate or redirect threats and harassment safely and successfully. —AC

Sunday ,December 11. 2-6pm $20. First Baptist Church, 517 E. Washington. 734-663-1870.



Downtown Ypsilanti Scan for map of Downtown!




CUTS or COLOR EXP 1.31.16


HOURS: TUES. - SAT. BY APPOINTMENT / december 2016   5




Washtenaw County has many independently owned, unique stores for finding that perfect present. We’ve got the details on deals, gift ideas and holiday treats for everyone in the family— consider it our early gift to you. Happy holidays!

A2 Yoga

2030 Commerce Blvd. 734-216-4006



2016  /

A2 Yoga has been part of the Ann Arbor community for 13 years, and their staff and teachers are dedicated to helping others both on and off the yoga mat this holiday season. That means offering drop-in, multi-class and unlimited passes as well as clothing, books, mats and gift certificates for the experienced yogi and beginners alike. Head down to A2 Yoga on December 17 and 18 for 15% OFF all gift items and class passes. New to A2 Yoga, or the yoga scene in general? A2 Yoga offers a new student seven-day unlimited trial pass for only $20, and their friendly staff of yoga experts will get you into a downward dog in no time.


Collected Works

303 Detroit St #107 (734) 995-4222 Looking for one-of-a-kind items for the loved ones on your gift list? Collected Works is your one-stop fashion shop! Find hand-curated offerings in a plethora of styles from many American artists to satisfy all shopping budgets. Some unique things to check out - the Tipsy Zebra opera coat and the numerous silk scarves, especially the multi-color tube scarf. Also, fall in love with the beautiful jewelry and an array of other accessories.


Ragstock 337 E. Liberty St. 734-997-0932

Everyone needs to bundle up this winter, and Ragstock has all the vintage and classic clothing for the fashion conscious. Their friendly staff will walk shoppers through all their clothing options and a numerous collection of holiday accessories. During the holiday season, there is nothing like an ugly Christmas sweater party! All of Ragstock’s vintage ugly sweaters are now 25% off. Bundle up, and look good doing it, or surprise your loved ones this year with a vintage gift from Ragstock. CONTINUED ON P. 8

Can’t go to the game? Watch it here! NOW POURING 64 TAPS!

Serving Growlers, Famous Burgers & Pizza!

Need food for your tailgate?


Voted 2015 Big Business of the year by Saline Chamber of Commerce

103 E. Michigan Ave. Saline

734.429.3159 / december 2016   7



Lucky’s Market

1919 S. Industrial Hwy. 734-368-9137 Looking for local, natural products to wow guests during your holiday dinner? Lucky’s Market has got you covered thanks to their long history of partnering with local farmers. But Lucky’s isn’t only stocked with local food -- their Natural Living department has candles, skin care products and many more gifts. Bundle up loved ones with the Andes Gifts care packages, hand-crafted gloves, hats and scarves from Peru and Bolivia, with proceeds benefitting thousands of indigenous women. With Lucky’s gift cards, your loved ones can select their own perfect product, or stock their fridge for the cold weather.



2016  /


Ann Arbor PTO Thrift Shop 2280 S. Industrial Hwy. 734-996-9155

2030 Commerce Blvd., Ann Arbor, MI 48103 | 734-216-4006

Happy holidays from all of us at A2 Yoga!

Find everything for the holidays all in one place at Ann Arbor PTO Thrift Shop! They’ve got holiday trees, lights and decorations to make your house look like the best on the block, and they’ve got all sorts of party supplies to help you entertain. There are also great gift ideas, including vintage and new items, holiday and warm weather clothing, as well as supplies to create a unique homemade gift. Check out the new SHOWCASE Space for collectable, antique items and designer jackets, clothes, and shoes. Don’t forget that A2 PTO is still accepting donations over the winter, so clear out those old, never-opened gifts and grab something new!

RelaxStation 300 W. Huron St. and 117 N. First St. Suite 30 734-623-1951 The best part of the holidays? When the family is asleep by the fire, the shopping is finished and the cooking and dishes are all done. Time to finally decompress with the folks at RelaxStation. In case your family needs a hint on how to help you kick back, mention their gift cards, which can be applied to any service. RelaxStation also has E-Gift Cards available on their website, so your family doesn’t have to leave home to thank you for all your hard work this holiday. CONTINUED ON P. 11


Check out the website for December and January workshops! Monday 9:15 – 10:30 AM 10:00 – 11:15 PM 6:00 - 7:15 PM 7:15 – 8:15 PM 7:30 - 8:45 PM Tuesday 9:15 - 10:30 AM 9:30 - 10:30 AM 10:45 - 12:00 PM 11:00 - 1:2:00 PM 6:15 - 7:15 PM 7:15 - 8:30 PM Wednesday 9:15 - 10:30 AM 9:30 - 10:30 AM 11:00 - 12:00 PM 5:45 – 7:00 PM 6:00 - 7:15 PM 7:15 - 8:15 PM 7:30 - 8:30 PM Thursday 9: 00 - 10:15 AM 9:15 - 10:30 AM 10:30 - 11:45 AM 6:00 - 7:00PM 7:00 - 8:15 PM 7:15 - 8:30 PM Friday 9:15 - 10:30 AM 5:30 - 6:30 PM Saturday 8:00 - 9:15AM

Classes Vinyasa II Vinyasa I : Foundations Heart-Centered Hatha Yoga Gentle/Restorative Yoga Vinyasa I & II Classes Vinyasa I Hatha I & II Gentle Flow Yoga FREE Community Yoga: Onã Flow Vinyasa (DW) * NIA Vinyasa I Classes Heart-Centered Hatha Yoga Vinyasa: PrAna Vinyasa Inspired (All levels) NIA Vinyasa: Movement Flow Ashtanga Fundamentals: Primary Series I Hatha I & II YIN Yoga & Meditation Classes Gentle Yoga & Meditation Classical Vinyasa (preferably no beginners) Hatha Flow Vinyasa Movement Flow Pre-Natal Yoga: Mommy Time Vinyasa I & II Classes Vinyasa I & II FREE Community Yoga: Onã Flow Vinyasa (DW) * Classes FREE Community Yoga: Ashtanga Primary Series (DW) * 9:15 - 10:30 AM Vinyasa I 11:00 - 12:15 PM Traditional Hatha Yoga (All Levels) Sunday Classes 9:00 - 10:30 AM Heart-Centered Hatha Yoga 9:15 - 10:15 AM Hatha Yoga / Yoga Foundations (All Levels including Beginners) 10:30 - 11:30 AM NIA 10:45 - 12:00 PM Pre-Natal Yoga: Mommy Time 4:30 - 5:30PM FREE Community NIA: NIA (DW) *

Teacher Sandra Marty Carter Natasha Carter Teacher Rachel P. Carter Sarah Ana Megan S. Wendy Teacher Carter Ana Ana Natasha Wendy Sarah Dina Teacher Dina Samantha Sara Lisa Wu Lisa T Jo Teacher Wendy Ana Teacher Self Lead

Studio Gold Purple Gold Purple Gold Studio Gold Purple Gold Purple Purple Gold Studio Gold Purple Gold Gold Purple Gold Purple Studio Purple Gold Purple Gold Purple Gold Studio Gold Gold Studio Purple

Rachel P. Natasha Teacher Heather Carrie

Gold Purple Studio Gold Purple

Megan S. Purple Heather Gold Ana Gold

NEW students $20/7 Days Unlimited Trial Pass

(Washtenaw County residents, starts 1st class visit & must fill-out W² Form) / december 2016   9




2016  /



Vis-a-Vis Salon and Spa 320 Miller Ave. #171 734-213-7455

Holiday shopping can be exhausting. Why not head to Vis-a-Vis Salon & Spa, check out their vast service menu and get rewarded for all your hard work at the same time? This holiday season, every Vis-a-Vis gift card purchase of $100+ comes with a totally free Holiday Gift Set (value $42), with V2 Heart-Crafted Cosmetics, the spa’s own Ann Arbor-made, small-batch skincare line. Vis-a-Vis’ services include facials, massage, waxing, make-up, nails, airbrush tanning and more. Pamper your loved ones and take advantage of a great deal! Holiday Gift Sets available in December, while supplies last.

Serving Ann Arbor’s Beautiful Women Since 1977

Happy Holidays

Keep cozy for the holidays and beyond. Outerwear for a beautiful season from...

From all of us at


as A thing


MON-SAT 10-6, SUN 1-4 303 Detroit St., Suite 107, Ann Arbor (Across From Argiero’s) 734.995.4222 | / december 2016   11

Cara Rosaen

Yourist Studio Gallery 1133 Broadway St., Ann Arbor. Venue Artists: 16

A new art tour provides great local art in a variety of venues. by Jacqueline Bull

There is a new wind blowing in the Ann Arbor art scene. Cara Rosaen, a ceramic artist at Yourist Studio Gallery, noticed the second weekend in December was a popular weekend for art shows in the city, “We didn’t realize just how many shows were really on that weekend,” said Rosaen. To connect those already scheduled shows, Rosaen and other artists at Yourist started their own art tour. The Winter Art Tour, raised some money (securing Washtenaw County Visitor’s Bureau as their lead sponsor) and connected eight other venues to be a part of the Tour. The Winter Art Tour, a collaboration across Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti, from December 9-11, features over 350



artists which (with a few exceptions) are local Washtenaw County people. Guests coming to see the art carry a “Passport to Art” to be stamped at each venue. (Passports are available at all participating venues and online at Individuals that attend 4 out of 9 shows are entered to win one of the 15 pieces of art made and donated by artists from the Tour. “We liked the idea of connecting Ann Arbor and Ypsi together and getting people to travel across the great divide. And we wanted people to go to small intimate spaces,” Rosaen said. Current spoke with a sampling of the participating artists spoke about their work. They are waiting to meet you on the Tour.

2016  /

Cara Rosaen started her own business in Ann Arbor four years ago. With the intensity of the “start-up world,” her health plummeted. Pottery was her lifeline, “It was, ‘I need my hands in the mud because I need to be grounded.’ It was really simple. I need it because it makes me sane. For me, it is whatever my body needs at that point to feel more whole,” she said. She enjoys that clay is so tactile and forgiving. “I just hate precision. With clay if you mess up, you just pat it back together again.” The most exciting part of the process for her: “I’m most alive when I’m on the edge of disaster. It could go all really wrong. I love taking something like a perfect cylinder and then mess it up, but make it look like a human actually touched it. I’m obsessed with texture. It is endlessly fascinating. I love creating things that demand to be touched.”

When Cre Fuller bought his house in Ypsilanti, he couldn’t afford art for his empty walls, so he started making his own. He’s always been intrigued by robots and the 1950’s aesthetic, that vision for the future. He started making metal robots with functional glowing eyes as gag gifts for friends and was encouraged to do an art show. “I put my glass jewelry supplies in a box and turned that studio into a robot lab.” A big part of Fuller’s process is the use of found materials, “I like stuff that is broken, forgotten or lost. I don’t buy new stuff. It’s the digging down into those dirty dusty oily boxes that someone pulled out of Grandpa’s garage.” It’s been 16 years since Fuller’s first robot and now he has a studio in his own garage. He calls his space a wonderful mess, full of his treasures from hunting through antique and recycle shops. “I don’t know if I like making or finding more.”

Cre Fuller

DIYpsi The Riverside Arts Center, 76 N. Huron St., Ypsilanti Venue Artists: 80+

Mary Underwood

Fuller builds in a methodical way, working on only one robot at a time. He starts with the lamp eyes, both for the functional reason, the wiring, and also as a starting point for their personality. “All I want to do is to make more. That is where I find my little zen moments. I’m a tinkerer. You just have to engineer it. I don’t like to manipulate the parts too much. I want people to recognize the parts, but at the same time at a certain distance, not to see them at all.”

Front Porch Textiles 1219 Traver St. Ann Arbor Venue Artists: 7

“If you asked me 30 years ago if I would be weaving, I would laugh. I was sewing at the time. I thought weavers were these really neat mystical people,” said Mary Underwood. “I couldn’t afford a working wardrobe, so I made all of my own clothes. I loved fabric from the beginning. I can feel it and know what it can be.” Weaving found her niche on her honeymoon. On a walking tour in a remote part of Italy, she made her way to fabric stores. One fabric in particular caught her eye, “One of the fabrics was made with a semifelted yarn. It was really unique with enlarged threads. It was like nothing I had ever seen. I got the last of the bolt and thought I would never see the fabric again. Then I thought, ‘Well I can see how it’s made!’” Underwood, weaving since 1995, built her own studio in 2009. “The studio was built with the intention of being an art piece itself.” Underwood began her career collaborating with other artists and often invites people into the studio. “It’s a fun place to work and a fun place to invite others. You walk into the life of the artist for a few minutes. I enjoy sharing that with people.” Underwood had a particular vision for her space, which inspires her. “There are two things that drive me in the morning: the thought of grinding coffee beans and getting over to the studio. It’s endless, the possibilities for playing over there.” / december 2016   13


Yee Siang Dumplings Changed Me By Sonny Forrest For anyone predisposed to Chinese food, it’s always been easy to take notice of Yee Siang Dumplings (4837 Washtenaw Ave) mid-cruise down the stretch of Washtenaw Avenue straddling Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti. Going in is a little more difficult. The place fits the archetypal Chinese restaurant you’ve been meaning to try forever, but, because the street boasts eclectic food choices more-or-less representing most of the Asian continent’s highlights, you just haven’t gone in yet.

Go in. Immediately. The space is a low-key dining room with textile-upholstered wooden chairs reminiscent of a doctor’s office in 1988, which would normally be a turnoff if the dine-in guests weren’t seated in front of plates piled with craggy dumplings and steaming bowls of noodle soups. The menu listed about a dozen dumpling varieties. Each could be ordered pan-fried, boiled or steamed. Because our server told us that steaming the dumplings would take a little longer, we opted for boiled lamb-and-cilantro and pan-fried pork-and-chive dumplings. The pork-and-chive dumplings arrived first. Normally, I won’t dig in until I have a mound of oily chili flakes on my plate, but Yee Siang didn’t require me to adulterate its namesake dish with superfluous pastes (though the table did feature a caddy with

954 Phillips Ave., Toledo Oh 419-720-7387 'G .+,B>44(&G<)&>>\>+$B>44(&G8)&> (-B>49(&G8)&>>\>>',">.(2


â&#x20AC;&#x201A; december

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soy sauce, vinegar, salt and pepper should one feel inclined). The lamb-and-cilantro dumplings danced with rich savory notes undefeated by a bath in scalding water. We rounded out the meal with a Ma La Bowl. The menu laid out meat, veggie and noodle options with which to build our own bowl atop the base spices. Our server warned us about the Ma La Bowlâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s spice, but didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mention that the kitchen would employ Sichuan peppercorns. For the uninitiated, Sichuan peppercorns are a variety of northern Chinese spice that leaves behind a deep, pleasantly numbing burn. Even Northeastern Chinese food purists â&#x20AC;&#x153;in the knowâ&#x20AC;? are hard-pressed to find US restaurants that use the real deal Sichuan peppercorns. This ingredient is primarily responsible for our experience at Yee Siang leaving a favorable impression that outlasted even the peppercornsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; characteristically sustained heat. Though the understated interior doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t seem to promise much, the kitchenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s deft execution of the restaurantâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ambitious menu provides a refreshing juxtaposition. Yee Siang Dumplings holds up against any of Washtenaw Avenueâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Chinese cuisine offerings with humble aplomb. .

Located at 4837 Washtenaw Avenue, Yee Siang Dumplings is open Tuesday through Sunday from 11:00am to 9:00pm.

Ongoing Wine Night Wednesdays 4pm. Evans Street Station. Free

Try out some new wines. There are½ priced bottles of wine. Unfinished bottles can be corked and taken home.

Wednesdays and Saturdays Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market 7am. Ann Arbor Farmer’s MarketKerrytown. Free

It may be getting colder, but this farmer’s market is open year-round.

Tuesdays and Saturdays

Saline Farmer’s Market Sat: 8am. Tue: 3pm. Saline District Library. Free

Saline’s market is also open

2 Friday Village Wine Shop 5th Annual Holiday Wine Tasting 6pm. $25. The Ark at St. Ambrose.

This event will give you the opportunity to help a good cause while tasting some great wine. You will be allowed to sample many great wines and appetizers. This event benefits Wigs for Kids.

3 Saturday


\]Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels

Smoked Porter Vertical Tasting 7pm. $20. Hopcat Detroit.

This tasting will include three vintages of Alaskan Brewing Company’s award-winning smoked porter. There will also be appetizers of cheese, meats, crackers and dark chocolate to complement the drinks.

Sava’s Uncorked: Italian Wine Tasting 6pm. $24. Sava’s Restaurant.

Eight wines, cheese, charcuterie. There will be a discussion about the history and tasting notes.

Witch’s Hat Beer Diner & Special Tapping 7pm. $30. HopCat-Ann Arbor.

HopCat is tapping some exclusive drafts with dinner. These drafts will be expertly paired with food.

Oyster & Bubbles: An Evening with L. Mawby

Larry Mawby is a “fizzmaster extraordinaire” and makes sparkling wines in the Leelanau Peninsula. He brings his selections to accompany a meal by Chef’s Alex.

7 Wednesday Christmas Candy Class

Enjoy seeing holiday decorations and food as you travel to different spots on the route. Sponsorship opportunities are also available. Call for locations.

Learn how to make a festive holiday treat. Attendees get to take home all the treats. Keep them for yourself or give away as gifts for the holidays.

4 Sunday Baker’s Holiday Showcase 1pm. Ypsilanti Farmers MarketPlace Hall.

Area artisan bakers bring unique cakes, cookies, breads and pastries.

5 Monday Winter Seminar Series: Fitness & Nutrition for Women 6:30pm. Robin Hills Farm. Free.

This seminar will talk about nutrition practices that can benefit a woman’s physiology. Registration required.

6 Tuesday Michael Faricy’s Irish Stout Feature Hour

6pm. Arbor Brewing Company Microbrewery.

Go to main bar to try out Irish stout. Mug Club members receive 30% off carryout packs and 50% off select kitchen items.

The product selection additions at Zingerman’s Deli are fast and furious, with new foods items constantly being introduced to accompany old stand-bys on the shelves. In Ari’s Top Picks of 2016, Ari Weinzweig will lead participants through his favorite-tasting foods of the year. He’ll give a little background into each product and then let the flavors take over. Runs Wednesdays all December. Wednesdays. 6:30pm. $45. Zingerman’s Deli, 422 Detroit St. 734-663-3400.

7pm. $95. Zingerman’s Roadhouse.

Holiday Home Tour

1pm. $15-$20. 734-487-9669

Best of 2016

5:30pm. $50. The Baker’s Nook.

Cocktail Class - Holiday Cocktails in Detroit 7pm. $45. Antietam.

Learn how to create your own holiday cocktails and warm drinks. The session will explore the history of these drinks as well as instructions.

Ari’s Top Picks of 2016 6:30pm. $45. Zingerman’s Deli.

A night of storytelling and taste bud tickling. Ari will show the best tasting products (nearly 30) of the year. Registration required. Also on Dec. 14 and 21.

Belgian & Sours Beer Tasting

7pm. $35. ABC Microbrewery.

Two dozen of the best Belgian and Sour beers. Tickets include beer samples, an appetizer buffet, a complete program tasting and an entry in the door prize. / december 2016   15

PVS )BQQZ) ls: $1.00 off all drafts.

ia 5-7pm drink spec ue Light, Carlsberg, Tuesday-Friday tt PBR, Laba Bl $1.75 bottles of stel Light, Palm and Bud. Heineken, Am

Cocktail Class: Better with Bubbles 7pm. $45. The Last Word.



$2.50 Valentine Gin or Vodka Drinks. Mini Burgers $2.00 each. No limit. Coney bar 5pmclose (2 drink min). 5VFTEBZ 4QFDJBMT $2.00 Corona bottles, $2.00 Tequila Shots, $4.00 Pitchers of Dos Equis. $2.00 tacos (no limit), taco bar 5pm-7pm (2 drink min). 8FEOFTEBZ 4QFDJBMT $2.75 any draft, $5.00 Pitchers of Bud Light. $5.00 Miller Lite and Shandy pitchers, Coney Bar 5pm-7pm (2 drink min). $6.75 burger and beer. 5IVSTEBZ4QFDJBMT $2.00 Long 4,&&14 Island Ice Teas, $5.00 Pitchers of Coors 4&44*0/ light or Travelers Illusive (Drink specials 1*5$)&34 start at 10pm). $7.99 Philly Cheese Steak. Nacho bar 5pm-7pm (2 drink min). .POEBZ 4QFDJBMT




$1.75 bottles of Amstel Light, Heineken, PBR, Palm, Labatt Blue Light, Carlsberg, and Bud from 11am - 7pm. Free wing buffet 5pm-7pm (2 drink min). 7pm-Close $2.00 Miller light or Coors light Bottles, $4.00 Jack Daniels. Food specials are all day. Fish -n- Chips $6.99. 4BUVSEBZ4QFDJBMT$8.00 Well Mini Pitchers, $12.00

Call Mini Pitchers, $14.00 Vodka Redbull Mini Pitchers, and $20.00 Top Shelf or Moscow Mule Mini Pitchers (Drink specials start at 10pm). $7.99 BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich.



â&#x20AC;&#x201A; december

Everyone craves salty and sweet (and generally unhealthy) snacks when theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re hungry, but there is a way to train the brain to shift snack time towards foods that promote health and wellness. At Conquer Your Cravings, yoga teacher and vegan Ellen Livingston will teach participants how to put away the potato chips and find other options to satisfy those late night habits. Sponsored by the Peopleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Food Co-op. --ZM Tuesday, December 13. 7pm. AADL Downtown, 343 S. Fifth Ave. 734-327-4200. Free

12 Monday

Best of Washtena w H; (&', 7: ;  HIĂ&#x2039;9>E?9;

Stop the snacking

2016â&#x20AC;&#x2021; /â&#x20AC;&#x2021;

This class will discuss and make cocktails made with champagne. There are history, stories and technique instruction.

An Exclusive Cooking Demo with Chef AJ

6:30pm. $35 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; $45. Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital. pbnsg.rog.

Chef AJ has become famous for being the executive Pastry Chef at SantĂŠ Restaurant in Los Angeles. She is also the host of Foody TV series Healthy Living with Chef AJ. This demonstration will improve your cooking skills and give useful tips for your own cooking.

13 Tuesday Savaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Uncorked: Sparkling Wine Tasting 6pm. $24. Savaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Restaurant.

A full experience of eight wines, cheese, charcuterie. There will be a discussion about the history and tasting notes.

Bellâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Beer Dinner at the Peterboro 6:30pm. $55. The Peterboro.

As part of the Beer Dinner series The Peterboro is hosting Bellâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Brewery as they provide four exclusive beers. These drinks are a selection of winter and fall specialties. A four course meal will be provided to complement each drink.

14 Wednesday Christmas Cupcake Class 5:30pm. $50. The Bakerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Nook.

Learn how to make a Santa hat cupcake, pretzel Christmas tree, holly cupcake and more. Take home all the treats. Keep them for yourself or give as a gift.

15 Thursday Patton Valley Vineyard Wine Tasting and Food Pairing. 6pm. $20. The Royce Detroit.

This event will teach you about sustainable wine. Taste many wines from the Patton Valley Vineyard, and learn about food pairings for each.

18 Sunday Open House & Holiday CSA Share Pickup!1pm. Robin Hills Farm. Free.

See Robin Hills Farmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s new marketplace and cafe. Resident Chef Laura Thacker demystifies classic holiday recipes with organic ingredients.

20 Tuesday Fall into Love with Food Again

7pm. Living Out Loud. Free

The topic is â&#x20AC;&#x153;Learning to Love Yourself.â&#x20AC;? The discussion is lead by dietician Deanna Denny. The event will talk about emotional eating, meal prepping, and ways to help you fall in love with food again. The series is an opportunity to self-reflect on an individualâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s relationship to food.


Mittenfest Returns to Bona Sera Local Music Lineup Benefits 826michigan By Jeff Milo

The 11th Mittenfest kicks off at the end of the month at Bona Sera and we can assure you, without any doubt, that you are going to want to be there.

Photo Credit: Doug Coombe

In part four of this ongoing series of features, Current explores the state of the local music scene, particularly surveying the opportunities available for bands eager to be heard and where audiences can hear them. Last month, we took you behind the stages to talk to folks who run venues such as The Blind Pig and The Ark. This month, we’ve asked Bona Sera to talk about its second consecutive year hosting this annual benefit festival raising funds for 826michigan’s ongoing nonprofit work in literacy and writing arts programming. Mittenfest started as a backyard house party concert on Madison and has since been hosted at several local venues. It became an annual holiday/ New-Year’s-time scene set to a cozy-sweaters-withwhiskey vibe, where dozens of local musicians pack day’s-long lineups worth of performances to benefit 826michigan. “Since our days as an underground supper club we have been involved in connecting with nonprofit organizations and fundraising with them,” said Bona Sera owner Annette Weathers. “We hold the importance of giving back to our community as one of our core principles.” Continued on p18

Fred Thomas, Michigan music scene staple, will perform again this year. / december 2016   17


Photo Credit: Doug Coombe

Misty Lyn & The Big Beautiful.

Continued from p17

“We are very proud to be part of creativity in Ypsilanti,” said Riva Jewell-Vitale, a former Bona Sera supper club volunteer now managing the operation’s events and catering. “Although we don’t wish to be a bar, we enjoy using the underground event space for live music whenever we can. The space has hosted theater, weddings, parties, DJ events and live music.” In its first two years, Mittenfest was hosted at the Corner Brewery in Ypsi and The Blind Pig in Ann Arbor. Its most formative years and lineups were hosted at the Elbow Room and Woodruff’s, two Ypsilanti venues that eventually closed. It



nested at the Blind Pig for 2014 and now looks forward to its second go-round at Bona Sera. It seems that since Woodruff’s closing, more and more venues like Bona Sera, or Cultivate, or Crossroads, have been stepping up the live-music-hosting itinerary of their weekly schedules.

Photo Credit: Doug Coombe

Since 2012, Bona Sera’s home has been at Michigan & Washington in Downtown Ypsilanti’s historic Kresge Building. Starting in 2009, Weathers was the co-cuisinecurator of an underground supper club of the same name, emphasizing diversity in their dishes, both culturally and flavorfully. “So, last year, when we were approached by 826 to host Mittenfest, we knew it was a great opportunity to work with a wonderful organization,” she said. 826michigan inspires school-aged students to write confidently and skillfully with the help of adult volunteers in their communities.

And that, says Mittenfest co-organizer Annie Palmer, is because “…nature abhors a vacuum…” The bright side of Elbow Room and Woodruff’s closing is that “the community always finds a way to keep going—because it has to. The A2/ Ypsi music scene has been, as long as I’ve been in it, supremely fortunate that we keep birthing out all these motivated and passionate creative organizers who can see the scene for what it is at whatever stage it.

Thursday, December 29 through Saturday, December 31. 7:30pm, doors. 8pm, music. $10 donation. Ages 21+. Bona Sera Underground 200 W. Michigan Ave., 734-340-6335.

2016  /

Anna Burch of Frontier Ruckus.


Mondays Live Music Mondays 7pm. ABC Microbrewery. Free

Live music with some suds.

The Blues

7pm. The Rumpus Room Chelsea. Free

Blues every Monday night with the JTW trio.

1 Thursday Adrian Legg

7:30pm. $20. The Ark.

Acoustic guitar.

Songwriters Open Mic 7:30pm Oz’s Music Store Free

Open mic for original, acoustic music by solo/duo/trio singersongwriters.

Jen Cass and The Lucky Nows

8pm. $15. The Ark.

A new band from Detroit.

2 Friday Don White and Christine Lavin

8pm. $25. Green Wood Coffee House.

Comedy and serious lyrics combine.

Sweater Beats w/ Different Sleep

9pm. $12-$15. Blind Pig. R&B and dance music.

3 Saturday Mac Miller

music 8 Thursday The Ragbirds Present: The Ebird and Friends Holiday Show 8pm. $20-$50. The Ark.

Three days of holiday music featuring plenty of local guests. Runs through Saturday.

9 Friday Chuck Mitchell

8pm. $15. Green Wood Coffee House.

Detroit singer, songwriter and actor performs.

10 Saturday Dan Orcutt

6pm. Mash. Free

Chill tempo music on custombuilt string instruments.

11 Sunday Delbert McClinton

7:30pm. $50. The Ark.

Blues and honky-tonk from a American music legend.

14 Wednesday 9pm. $15-$18. Blind Pig. Some of the most innovative house music out there today.

15 Thursday CloZee and Psymbionic

Isaac Castor

Guitarist and electronica combine.

9:30pm. $7-$10. Blind Pig.

EP release party and a full night of hip-hop and live instrumentation.

4 Sunday Carrie Newcomer

7:30pm. $20. The Ark.

Activism and art come together in music.

7 Wednesday Laura Rain Duo

9pm. Mash. Soulful duo.Free

It’s become an Ann Arbor tradition– The Ragbirds Present: The Ebird & Friends Holiday Show is a festive concert like no other. Inspired by Erin Zindle’s (“Ebird,” lead singer of The Ragbirds) childhood musical Christmastime get-togethers, the three-night performance has become a highlight of the holidays. Audiences never know who might drop by! --ZM Thursday, December 8-Saturday, December 10. 7:30pm. $20-$50. The Ark, 316 S. Main St. 734-761-1818.

Dopapod and Pigeons Playing Ping Pong

7:30pm. $34. Royal Oak Music Theatre.

Superstar rapper comes to MI.

Holiday with friends

9pm. $7.50-$15. Club Necto.

Katie Geddes and Friends

8pm. $15. Green Wood Coffee House.

Traditional and contemporary folk.

Kool Keith

9pm. $15. Blind Pig.

Playful OG New York rapper.

17 Saturday Zander Michigan

6pm. Mash. Free

Detroit folk music.

Continued on p20 / december 2016   19


A moment of silence for Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings Current Magazine would like to extend our deepest sympathy and condolences to the family, friends and fans of soul and funk singer Sharon Jones. Ms. Jones & The Dap Kings have dominated the music industry since the mid-60’ s. In fact, Jones has been labeled the female James Brown of her era. The group (The Dap-Kings) was nominated for their first Grammy Award in December of 2014 in the category Best Album of the Year for Give the People What They Want. Sharon Jones was born on May 4, 1956 and passed away on November 18, 2016. Ms. Jones is a musical icon that will be greatly missed and forever remembered. Continued from p19

Thunderwüde Blackthorn

8pm. $20. The Ark.

A musical ramble across Ireland.

21 Wednesday Winter Solstice Sing

6pm. Cultivate Coffee & TapHouse. 307 N River St. Free.

Reflection on the season in sound and silence during a singing circle. Anyone who enjoys singing and sitting quietly

28 Wednesday

is welcome.

Searchable lists updated daily at 20 


2016  /

8pm. Chelsea Alehouse Brewery, 420 N Main St Ste 100, Chelsea, MI. Free

Soak up live bluegrass as Thunderwüde brings their downhome sound to the Alehouse stage every Wednesday. Playing traditional bluegrass tunes as well as venturing down a path that includes Jason Dennie originals and choice pop hits in a bluegrass style.

30 Friday



Soulful, stylistic rock music.

Acoustic duo.

9pm. Mash. Free

6pm. Mash. Free

Greensky Bluegrass

7pm. $39.50-$60. Royal Oak Music Theatre.

End the year with Lindsay Lou and The Flatbellys. Also runs Saturday. / december 2016   21



30% OFF






MON -THU. 10-6 FRI 10-8 SAT 10-5 SUN 12-5

734.761.8120 215 S. MAIN ANN ARBOR MI. 22 


2016  /

Campy Horror Classic All year long, the Michigan Theater has been streaming throwback films as part of the ’80s after Dark program. To cap off the year, and in celebration of the holiday spirit, the theater will show the campy horror classic Gremlins. When a father finds a special Christmas gift for his son, the family’s new pet comes with a dire warning: don’t feed it after midnight! --ZM Thursday, December 8. 9:30pm. $8-$10. Michigan Theater, 603 E. Liberty St. 734-668-8397. / december 2016   23

film smoothly, until one particular question. “We decided we would ask people to describe, non-verbally, the condition of the world. Thurman just stared straight into the camera. When you watch the film, it’s kind of hilarious how nervous I am; you see me zooming in, zooming out, focusing—I’ve worked with this camera for about an hour total at this point.” Thurman continues to look, directly at the camera, and, like Carter, the viewer may feel awkward and even uncomfortable as he or she wrestles with the meaning of that unflinching stare.

Count to One Local filmmaker and yoga teacher Scott Carter screens the documentary ONE: The Movie. by Nan Bauer

If you ever decide to film an interview with a world-renowned religious scholar, you might want to know how to operate a camera first. That advice comes from Scott Carter, who learned the hard way when he began a documentary project with his friends Ward M. Powers and Chad Muncie. “We’d get together once a week to sing, read and write poetry, watch movies and ask questions,” says Carter. After 9/11, the group wanted answers for the bigger questions—for instance, the causes of suffering and the meaning of life. “At first, we were asking everybody we knew to do filmed interviews: Buddhist, atheist, a priest, a rabbi, kids, grandparents. Then we thought, let’s ask somebody famous. We looked up Robert Thurman’s e-mail address, and were laughing as we sent it.”

Other thinkers became involved

Once Thurman was on board, the team found it easy to engage well-known thinkers, including Deepak Chopra, Ram Dass, and peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh. Equally important were people who they simply met in different environments. A young homeless man responds with unapologetic honesty. A woman known as Dragonfly, the Woodstock Fairy is “a remarkable witness to the human condition.” Using the documentary as a stepping stone to a career in film was never the point, and in fact ONE remains the sole credit for all three. “Sometime we think about making ‘One: Two,’” laughs Carter. “But it was so many years of our lives.” Ward Powers continues to work as an attorney and Chad Muncie is “still exploring human experience,” says Carter. As for him, he’s teaching yoga in Ann Arbor and also working as a visual artist.

Unanticipated response

To the group’s astonishment, the next morning, an email from Thurman—the Je Tsongkhapa Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies at Columbia University, considered one of the foremost American Buddhist scholars—was sitting in the inbox, saying that he would love to meet with them. The filmmakers boarded a plane just days after their camera had arrived in the mail. “I literally spent the flight reading the manual,” says Carter. He found Thurman to be “the most kind and generous man that I’ve met in my life. He thought we were gonna do a radio interview, so he was scruffy and invited me into the bathroom while he shaved.” The interview proceeded



For additional information about screenings of One: the Movie, visit a2yoga. net or call 734-216-4006

Local filmmaker, Scott Carter (L), with Robert Thurman (R), a foremost American Buddhist scholar.

2016  /

The film is also available for purchase at A2 Yoga. There will be plenty of times for discussion, questions and answers. “I have no attachment,” says Carter. “I don’t care if people rave about it or slam it. I’m always so grateful that someone takes 78 minutes to watch the movie.”

art Adventures on North Campus Exploring art across the river By Louis W. Meldman

North Campus, far more compact than Central Campus, hosts a year-round outdoor sculpture garden with striking, massive works around every corner. Many of these sculptures are near the College of Engineering and most are within easy walking distance of any parking space. Some of my favorites include the mural “The Order of the Spheres” by Roberto Juarez, painted on the dome of the Aerospace Engineering Department’s wind tunnel. Nearby is “Wave Field,” sculptured lawn by the architect Maya Lin, who designed the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C. I adore “Hobnob,” a 32foot-long, 17-foot-wide tastefully twisted block of aluminum by the Australian artist and aeronautical engineer Clement Meadmore. But for me, best in show is “Begob,” a 20-foot tall 12,000-pound “chili pepper red” steel design by Alexander Liberman that evokes Calder and Matisse. And, of course, no one can miss the College of Engineering’s Lurie Tower, the only thing on North Campus that can be seen from the Nichols Arboretum on Central Campus. There are only 23 grand carillons in the world, and the Michigan campus has two of them: The Lurie Tower and Albert Kahn’s Burton Memorial Tower.

The Bentley and the Ford

Less obvious on North Campus are the Bentley Historical Library at 1150 Beal Ave. and, right next door, the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library. Established in 1935 and named after Alvin M. Bentley, University of Michigan Regent and United States Congressman, the Bentley was endowed by his widow, Arvella. It is really an archive more than a library, with seemingly endless information on both U-M and the State of Michigan. To quote Director Terrence J. McDonald, the university and the state “were born together and grew up together.” Michigan became a federal territory in 1805 and a state in 1837. Founded in 1817, U-M was moved to Ann Arbor in 1841. That makes next year the 200th anniversary of U-M’s founding, and the Bentley staff is very excited. One of the largest and most successful university-based archives in America, the Bentley is your go-to resource if you have any question about the people, organizations, voluntary associations, and official documents of U-M or the state. The library publishes a magazine twice a year and an ongoing series of news articles drawn from its archives. For personal reasons I was drawn to a recent article based on the donated work of John Richard Behee, Ph.D., a U-M athletic historian. For his 1974 book Hail to the Victors, Behee interviewed 28 African-American U-M athletes in what was then a pioneering study of race and sports.

“Begob,” a 20-foot tall 12,000-pound “chili pepper red” steel design by Alexander Liberman

One of those 28 interviews was of Willis Ward, a bona fide U-M track-and-field and football superstar in the early 1930s. In an infamous blot on U-M athletic history, the Georgia Tech football team came to Ann Arbor in 1934, but refused to play if Ward was on the field. The U-M administration caved and the incensed U-M team was about to rebel. Gerald Ford threatened to quit the team, but Ward, his good friend, told him to go ahead and play, and they did, beating down Georgia Tech in fine form. I’d known about this long before Behee did his research because my dad played on that team with Willis and Gerry, as he called them. They all stayed friends as Ward went on to become a highly respected judge in Detroit and Ford a highly respected President of the United States of America, as decent in the Oval Office as he was on the U-M team. You can check out President Ford’s library at 1000 Beal, a lovely building with exhibits and special events and lectures. December 4 from 1-4pm is the annual free Holiday Open House replete with Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Detroit Observatory

The Bentley also oversees one of the most exciting Central Campus venues, the fully operational Detroit Observatory. The oldest observatory in Michigan and the second oldest building on the U-M campus, it’s called the Detroit Observatory because funding came from benefactors in Detroit. A full restoration was completed in 1998 and it stands today, at the corner of Observatory and Ann Streets, essentially as it was in 1854. With the Department of Astronomy the Observatory hosts mind-blowing viewing nights, usually 8-9:30 pm Monday and Wednesday, and tours on Sunday. It’s great for a date or a family outing.

For questions and information email Karen Wight, Observatory Project Coordinator at / december 2016   25

Matthew Webb (L) and Tyler Calhoun (R) get into the Christmas spirits.


A Dickens Christmas Reimaging A Christmas Carol at EMU by Sandor Slomovits

There are few things more strongly associated with Christmas than the many adaptations of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. This year you can see the local version, Christmas Carol’d, by Michigan playwright, Joseph Zettelmaier. Running for the first two weekends in December at Eastern Michigan University’s Quirk Theatre, the play will be directed by EMU Theatre professor, Terry Heck Seibert, who acted in the play when it was first produced in 2009 at Ann Arbor’s Performance Network. Zettelmaier’s script truly and elegantly honors Dickens’ novella. The conceit for this intimate version is that a small group of carolers, acting as a Greek Chorus of sorts, utilizes both humor and pathos to paint Dickens’ classic tale of redemption. They also play the forty some characters interacting with Scrooge throughout the play.

Current: When Christmas Carol’d was at the Performance Network the cast was five actors. For this production you’ll have seven. Prof. Heck Seibert: I have added two more actors for two

reasons agreed upon by Joe and myself. The first is to give more acting opportunities to students. The second is to help with the flow of the production. In the PN production there were moments that were a tad difficult to execute because a quick change was a little too quick from one character to the next, or we needed one more actor to make a shift from one scene to the next more efficient.

Zettelmaier: I’ve made several little nips and tucks, lines

here and there. With the addition of two more performers, the roles were reassigned and that created a lot of room to expand moments.

Seibert: Music was an integral part of the last production; it will be an even bigger part this time. Without giving anything away I want to make good use of some very talented students.

What was the initial inspiration for this adaptation? Zettelmaier: I’ve never made a secret of the fact that I adore A Christmas Carol. I’m a fan of Dickens in general, but there’s something so elegant and concise about this particular story. I’m drawn to stories about redemption, and it’s hard to imagine a more iconic redemption than Ebenezer Scrooge’s. And while A Christmas Carol wasn’t a constant factor in the Zettelmaier family Christmases, we certainly watched it many times. I still remember with great fondness when my parents took us to see the Goodman Theatre production when I was all of 14-years-old. That was the first stage production of it I’d seen, and it was glorious.

The two of you have worked together on a number of projects before. What are the advantages of that kind of ongoing working relationship? Zettelmaier: It’s created a sort of shorthand between us. We have a fundamental understanding of what we’re each trying to achieve, and can communicate it quickly and simply. Also, there’s a great deal of trust between us. Terry will ask to tweak a line or change a moment here or there, and I’m always all for it. She’s an incredibly skilled director, and it’s best to let her try things, in my experience.

Catch Christmas Carol’d December 2-December 11. For tickets, visit



2016  / / december 2016   27

Sorcery From UMGASS By Louis W. Meldman Founded in 1947, The University of Michigan Gilbert and Sullivan Society (UMGASS) is the oldest student-run society in America dedicated to the operettas of Sir William Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan. Every year, the society organizes students and civilians from the community for two fully staged productions from the 14operetta Gilbert and Sullivan canon, always with live orchestra accompaniment and always at the sublime Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre within the Michigan Union. And always the audience stands and sings “God Save the Queen” before the performance. (The words are in the playbill and the melody is the same as “My Country Tis of Thee.”) UMGASS is widely recognized as among the finest G&S societies in the world. Some of the orchestra members and Board of Directors have been with the group for more than 30 years, providing a continuity and standard of excellence that shows in every performance. It’s a labor of love for cast, company and audience alike, even for a newcomer like me. I only started attending 14 years ago. Gilbert and Sullivan formed the quintessential Victorian theatrical partnership, collaborating on comic operas between 1871 and 1896. W.S. Gilbert was the librettist (words) and Arthur Sullivan composed the music. They created a “topsy-turvy” musical theater of the absurd that hasn’t really been seen before or since. The 1999 movie Topsy Turvy directed by Mike Leigh depicted the first staging of The Mikado in 1885. It showed the actors and producers and hangers-on, the auditions, rehearsals and opening night audiences enraptured as they follow their libretti and swoon to the greatest light opera– perhaps the greatest pop music– ever written. And the film



can look up words that may be archaic to the modern ear. Not everybody today knows that a philter is a love potion– stuff like that. The playbill also has a small lexicon of arcane words and references. This is not homework, mind you, but intended to bring you up to speed so you can relax and enjoy the show. Fortunately, UMGASS casts invariably sing very clearly.

The Story

showed the tortured process of creation and collaboration between G&S, immortal bards of a civilization at the apex of an empire on which the sun never set.

The Sorcerer

This month, UMGASS stages The Sorcerer, which originally opened in 1877, the third G&S production, and one of my favorites even though posterity has given more attention to H.M.S. Pinafore, The Pirates of Penzance and The Mikado. The Sorcerer has all the classic G&S character types and range of songs: comic duets, patter songs, contrapuntal double-chorus, tenor and soprano love duet and the rest. To put it more crudely, The Sorcerer, like all

2016  /

G&S, has an absurd premise, songs with hypnotizingly clever lyrics and music that plays up the humor of the words. Hence unprepared viewers can be put off because they don’t know what the hell is going on and can’t understand all the words, which at times go by at a rapidfire pace. Let me propose a solution that worked for my son when he was 12 and in every subsequent year. First, read a brief synopsis of the story, like the one below, or seek a better one (as if) on the internet. The playbill will have an excellent plot summary for a quick review once you’re seated. Second, back to the internet, read through the libretto. You can then follow the lyrics more easily as they’re sung and you

It’s the village of Ploverleigh. Beautiful, rich Aline is engaged to handsome, rich Alexis. His father, Sir Marmaduke had once been in love with her mother, Lady Sangazure. A simple village girl, Constance is secretly in love with the local Vicar, Dr. Daly. Her mother, Mrs. Partlet is secretly in love with the old local Notary. So that all can be as happy and in love as they, Aline and Alexis consult the village sorcerer, John Wellington Wells, for a love-at-first-sight philter with which to spike the tea at the village picnic. (You can see where this is going.) Sir Marmaduke flips for humble Mrs. Partlet. Lady Sangazure gives her heart to the sorcerer, Mr. Wells. Constance falls head over heals for the Notary. Aline drinks the tea to cement her love for Alexis but she catches sight of Dr. Daly as the potion kicks in and she falls madly in love with him. Things get dicey, of course, but finally the sorcerer, at great personal sacrifice, saves the day and the inevitable, proper couples pair off, Aline and Alexis, Sir Marmaduke and Lady Sangazure, Constance and Dr. Daly, Mrs. Partlet and the Notary, and all’s well that ends well. The Sorcerer runs at 8 pm December 8, 9 and 10 and at 2 pm December 10 and 11. The best part: tickets range from $8 to $12 for students, $15 to $21 for seniors, and $16 to $24 for adults. You can’t beat it; join it.

arts & culture

Midnight Madness on Main Street

Come and shop until you drop at Midnight Madness on Main Street on Friday, December 6,2016. All of the stores will be open late with fantastic holiday gifts priced just right! There will be food and lots of entertainment to get you in the Christmas spirit and if that doesn’t do the trick, guess who will be roaming the streets of Ann Arbor? (7pm to 9pm) Our own Miss Washtenaw County, Heather Kendrick! ­— SS

Need a Light? The Wayne County Lightfest, the Midwest’s

largest and longest light show, is back and better than ever! Come and enjoy four miles of colorful, animated holiday lights, with over 47 plus Christmas displays as you cruise along Hines Park Drive.

7651 Merriman Road Monday–Thursday; 7pm10pm, Friday – Sunday; 6pm – 10pm through December 31, Closed Christmas Day.

Stores will be open from 7pm to midnight.

Prolific Professor

U of M Professor Laura Kasischke has published nine novels, one short story collection and eight books of poetry. She has received numerous awards and publications including a National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry. Kasischke is joined in conversation with Helen Zell Writers’ Program Director Doug Trevor to discuss craft and the writing life in Zell Visiting Writers Series: Laura Kasischke.—JB

Thursday, December 8. 5:30pm. Helmut Stern Auditorium, 525 S. State Street. 734-585-5567. Free


Almost everyone has seen the Disney version of Mary Poppins starring the incomparable Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke. But the movie and the novel it’s based off of, only tell part of the story, because seeing the story live adds a whole new element of fun. The production, from the Encore Musical Theatre Company, stars a talented cast of youngsters and established Southeast Michigan actors. Runs through December 23.

Thursdays - Sundays, November 25 through December 23. $27-$31. Encore Musical Theatre Company, 3126 Broad St., Dexter. 734-268-6200. / december 2016   29

arts & culture Ongoing [health] Ladies only Zumba

9:30am. $10-$15. Peachy Fitness. Wednesday & Fridays; 9:30-10:30am Saturdays; 8:30-9:30am Latin-inspired dance fitness.

[health] Free Community Yoga Class A2Yoga. Tuesdays/11am Vinyasa, Fridays/5:30pm Vinyasa, Saturdays/8am Ashtanga.

Mike Rayburn is a motivational speaker, comedian and guitarist. Lunch is provided.

[health] Health & Fitness Workshop

8:30am. $75. University of Michigan Central Campus Recreation Building.

GQT is giving a reason to get out and love movies, even on a Tuesday.

[misc.] Ypsilanti Holiday Tree and Greens Fundraiser

Wednesdays/7pm. The Rumpus Room, Chelsea. Free Pub trivia made by a community of whizzes.

1 Thursday [health] Piano with Yoga lessons

4pm. Music Lotus. Free Combining piano and yoga.

[misc.] Roland Graf: From the Ground Up

4pm. Ypsilanti Farmers Marketplace. Free

Get a Fraser Fir tree, wreaths, and centerpieces. A percentage of the proceeds go to Growing Hope.

[art] First Friday Off Center

5pm. Riverside Arts Center. Free

EMU Bright Futures hosts an art exhibit and activities featuring the creativity of students from elementary through college level.

[misc.] 7th Annual Rocking Charity X-mas Party 5:30pm. Necto.

[theater] Night in Recovery

Live music by Soul Practitioners. Free admission with a donation of a new unwrapped toy (Toys For Tots), non perishable food (Food Gatherers), or a donation for our furry friends (Humane Society of Huron Valley). Monetary donations will also be accepted.

A comedian and a rap artist tackle the topic of recovery.

[misc.] Wrap it Up! DIY Gift-Giving

5pm. Michigan Theater. Free

A lecture with Austrian artist, architect and designer Roland Graf.

6pm. $15. Macomb Intermediate School District Conference Center.

[theater] Matt McClowry

8pm. $9. Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase.

Brutally funny and sharply honest.

[theater] Michigan's Best Dance Crew

7pm. $2. Lydia Mendelssohn Theater. Seven of U of M’s best dance crews battling it out.

2016  /

8am. $129. Sheraton Detroit Novi Hotel.

Health and fitness educators gather for this workshop for new ideas and practices.

[misc.] Sporcle Trivia


[misc.] Mike Rayburn - What If

[theater] Thrifty Ticket Tuesday

Times vary. $7. Goodrich Quality 16.


2 Friday

6:30pm. AADL-Westgate. Free

Learn how to make paper gift bows and how to decorate wrapping paper with unique patterns.

[misc.] Christmas Parade

7pm. Downtown Tecumseh. Free

A classic Christmas parade followed by hot chocolate, caroling and extended shopping hours.

[misc.] Midnight Madness

[misc.] Saline Christmas Parade

Stores open late with holiday sales while Santa Claus roams the sidewalks among entertainers and performances.

41st annual parade with floats, bands, baton Twirlers, unicyclists, a hot Air Balloon and animals.

7pm. Downtown Ann Arbor. Free

[art] Nutcracker

7pm. $60. Macomb Center for the Performing Arts. The holiday classic.

[art] Dance and Related Arts Annual Show

8pm. $7. Betty Pease Theater.

U of M’s finest dance students showcase their semester-long dances.

3 Saturday [misc.] Stewardship Workday: Ruthven Nature Area

9am. Ruthven Nature Area. Free

Preserve the complex ecological community of Ruthven Nature Area.

[art] From Life to Charcoal: Observational Landscapes 10am. $60. Robin Hills Farm.

Two full classes on still life, composition, and the beauty of black & white. Materials are $15/ person. Also on Dec 4.

[misc.] SMP: Capitalizing on Diversity: Planet Formation Boundary

10:30am. 170 Weiser Hall. Free

Circumstellar disks and the role they play in star and planet formation.

[art] Lighted 3D Photos

11:30am. Ypsilanti District LibraryDowntown. Free

Bring in a 4x6 photo or digital photo file with good contrast. Create 3D files in first class, backlight your print with LED lights in second class. Registration required.

[art] Open Studio & Art Sale

12pm. Helen Gotlib & Dylan Strzynski's Art Studio. Free

Check out artworks in progress, new drawings, paintings and prints. Also on Dec 4.

5:30pm.Michigan Avenue, Saline. Free.

4 Sunday [health] Yoga with Cats

8:30am. $10. Tiny Lions lounge and adoption center. Hatha-style classes with some cuddly yoga masters.

[misc.] A Day of Solitude and Meditation Practice. 9am. $30. 734-475-0942.

A day-long meditation retreat led by Carol Blotter. Call to register and to receive location.

[misc.] GiftFest

10am. Pittsfield Union Grange. Free

An annual event showcasing the work of over 20 area artists and craftspeople. Good for gift shopping.

[art] Engaging with Art

1pm. $10. UMMA.

Each visit is different and specific to the docent’s theme.

[misc.] Syrian Cultural Celebration

1pm. AADL-Downtown. Free

arts & culture [health] Run Michigan Cheap

[theater] King Lear

7pm. $22. Michigan Theater. A lecture with austrian artist, architect, and designer Roland Graf.

5 Monday [health] Winter Seminar Series: Fitness & Nutrition for Women 6:30pm. Robin Hills Farm. Free. How

to match food and fitness for female physiology.

[film] Monday Night Movies

6:30pm. YDL-Whittaker. ypsilibrary. org. Free

The library is showing Hair in all of its hippy and long-locked glory.

[misc.] Drop-in Healing Night

7pm. Enlightened Soul Center.

Explore a curiosity. For both those seeking healing and practitioners. Pay what you can.

[health] Relax & Renew: Candlelight Hatha Yoga 7pm. $10-$15. Peachy Fitness.

Evening slow-flow yoga with an emphasis on calming mindful movements.

The community is invited to share in food, crafts, and music in support of refugees.

[literary] Monday Evening Book Group

[art] Zen & The Art of Coloring

Edge of the World, by Simon Winchester.

2pm. AADL-Malletts Creek. Free. The library is creating a zen environment with music for an afternoon of coloring.

[literary] NaNoWriMo: I Wrote a Novel, Now What?

2pm. AADL-Traverwood. Free.

Local author will offer tips on revising and how to get published.

[misc] Justice Richard Bernstein on the topic of Inclusion

6:30pm. University of Michigan Hillel. Free. Bernstein, the first blind justice, talks inclusion and being a blind individual.

7pm. YDL-Whittaker. Free. A discussion of Crack in the

6 Tuesday [misc.] Inclusion Requires Fracturing: Museums and Social Justice

6:30pm. University of Michigan Museum of Art, Helmut Stern Auditorium. Free

A talk on the challenges faced by museums to develop strategies of representation.

10am. $15-$25. 5k, 10k and 15k races, t-shirts and medals. Register online for the race location.

[misc] Scientist Spotlight

11am. University of Michigan Museum of Natural History. Free Meet some U-M Science Communication Fellows and interact with their latest work.

[misc.] Trivia Night: Smarty Pants Smackdown at the Alehouse

8pm. Chelsea AleHouse. Free

Hosted by the Chelsea District Library, join or bring a team for 5 rounds of trivia.

7 Wednesday [misc.] Ari Weinzweig: The Spirit of Generosity 8am. $25 - $50. Zingerman's.

Building bottom lines by building generosity into the work.

[art] Print Swap 2016

5pm. Intermedia Gallery Group, Ypsilanti. Free

The reception for the swapped prints exhibit.

[misc.] Curator Lecture: Traces and Fragments: the Life of a Chokwe Mask 5:30pm. UMMA. Free

The biography of a Chokwe mask and its journey is brought to life by Laura De Becker, the Helmut and Candis Stern Associate Curator of African Art.

[misc.] Tree Lighting

6pm. $3. Summit on the Park.

Seasonal entertainment, holiday artisan and vendor marketplace and the official tree lighting.

[literary] Feminist Book Club 7:00pm

Literati Bookstore. 7pm. Literati. Free

Thoughtful discussion of Brit Bennett's debut novel, The Mothers. / december 2016   31

arts & culture

[misc.] Coffee with Creatives

10am. Cultivate Coffee & TapHouse. Free

8 Thursday [literary] Zell Faculty Spotlight: Laura Kasischke

5:30pm. UMMA. Free

9 Friday [art] Miriam Dowd

10am. Riverside Arts Center

Kasischke is an acclaimed and prolific poet and novelist. She is the recipient of the National Book Critics Circle Award for poetry, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and two creative writing fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts.

[literary] Geneviève Zubrzycki

[film] One: A Contemporary Journey Towards A Timeless Destiny

[literary] Mark Webster Reading Series

Ann Arbor filmmaker, artist and yoga instructor brings his film and a discussion.

[film] Warren Miller's Here, There & Everywhere

7pm. Literati Bookstore. Free

Exploring Quebec’s history in Beheading the Saint: Nationalism, Religion, and Secularism in Quebec.

7pm. UMMA. Free

6:30pm. AADL-Downtown. Free

Two MFA students: one fiction, one poetry will read their work.

7:30pm. $20. Michigan Theater.

[theater] Tyler Boeh

A cinematic film capturing the beauty of skiing.

8:00pm. $9. Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase.

Fast-paced and smart comedy.

[theater] FUMGASS PRESENTS: The Sorcerer

[theater] I'll Be Seeing You

7:30pm. $20. The Michigan League. A romantic play based on real letters post WWII.

8pm. $10. Lydia Mendelssohn Theater.

A comic opera about a love potion gone awry. Runs through Dec 11.

[film] Gremlins

9:30pm. $10. Michigan Theater. Don’t feed them after midnight.


10 Saturday [misc.] Stewardship Workday: Miller Nature Area

9am. Miller Nature Area. Free Removing invasive species to preserve the native elm trees and wildflowers.





UPSTAIRS FROM PASTRY PEDDLER — 663-3441 Hundreds of Sealed LPs



2016  /

More like hanging out and less like networking.

[art] Dive Deep Into Self-Expression

10:30am. $10-$20. Friends Meeting House. Explore yourself, your life, and the joy of creative expression, using movement, sound, storytelling, stillness, and contact.

[art] DIYpsi Art Fair

11am. Riverside Arts Center. Free

11 Sunday [health] Wonderful Winter Woods

1pm. $8. Leslie Science and Nature Center.

Check out the action underneath the snow, make a reusable gift bag, and enjoy hot cocoa with the fire.

12 Monday [theater] Tap Room Comedy Night 9pm. The Tap Room. Free

A mix of new and experienced comedians.

13 Tuesday

A handmade art fair with many different vendors with live music, craft beer and art.

[health] Yoga Nidra w/ Natasha S

[health] Yoga Nidra Workshop with Vivianne Swart

An ancient guided relaxation technique.

5:30pm $20. AUM Yoga.

Yoga and sleeping, how great?

[misc.] Psychic Readings/ Spiritual Counseling

[health] 2016 Holiday Hustle 5k & 1 MIle

Drop-in readings with The Silver Peacock.

3:30pm. $25. Tiny Buddha Yoga.

4pm. $15-$40. Monument Park.

A hilly dash around Dexter to see the neighborhood light displays.

[theater] It's A Wonderful Life: Live Radio Theatre 8pm. $15. Heinz C. Prechter Educational & Performing Arts Center. Christmas eve in 1945 struck with a blizzard.

6pm. $30-50. Enlightened Soul Center.

15 Thursday [literary] African American Gems Book Club

6:30pm. YDL-Michigan. Free The book to be discussed is TBA.

[theater] Sean Kent

8:00pm. $9. Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase. Hard-hitting socio-political comedy.

Doug Horn Jazz Trio

tCary Kocher-Vibraphone tDoug Horn-Reeds tPaul Keller-Bass

Seasoned, Experienced Professionals tClassic Acoustic American Jazz Available for bookings! 734-635-6028

16 Friday [art] WISD Cultural Arts Program 9am. Riverside Arts Center. Free.

A music/movement and visual arts class.

[theater] The Nutcracker

6pm. $15-$35. The Power Center for the Performing Arts.

Presented by the Ann Arbor Ballet Theatre, the classic holiday ballet. Runs until Dec 18.

17 Saturday [misc.] Saturday Morning Solar Q&A: Own Your Own Power 10am. Ann Arbor District LibraryDowntown. Free

Learn about adding solar power to a home or business and the 30% federal tax credit.

18 Sunday [misc.] Euchre Sunday

1pm. ABC Microbrewery. Free.

11 tables for 44 players. Registration begins the day of at noon.

22 Thursday [theater] Kevin Downey Jr.

8:00pm. $9. Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase. “Refreshingly bizarre.”

25 Sunday [art] Dancing Freedom

5pm. Riverside Arts Center.

28 Wednesday [theater] Hashtag Comedy Show

8:00pm. $9. Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase.

Some of the most popular comedians from the tri-state area.

31 Saturday [misc.] Dexter Winter Marketplace 9am. Dexter Senior Center. Free

A little entertainment and a little shopping.

[misc.] Cheers to the New Year

8pm. Cultivate Coffee & TapHouse. Free

An evening of celebration and toasting to the new year. Live performance with New Soul & DJ and a champagne toast at midnight.

[misc.] Chris Canas Band: NYE 2016 Mash. Free

Dancing and a good time in the speakeasy-style bar.

[misc.] New Years Eve-il w/ Stormy Chromer 9pm. $7-$10.Club Above.

Some of the best local acts partying like it’s 2016 one last time.

[theater] NYE with L.A. Hardy

10:30pm. $30. Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase.

An observationist comic making the ordinary hilarious.


Searchable lists updated daily at / december 2016   33


Cannabusiness in Lansing, Legalization Fundraisers and New Dispensaries This month in Michigan Cannabis by Vic Tanny

Capital Conference: An Update on Local and State Medical Marijuana Law Changes Sunday, December 4 - Radisson Hotel, Lansing Join the Michigan Cannabis Business Development Group in downtown Lansing for a day of networking and education. The event will focus on Michigan Medical regulations and requirements under the new state program. Search Facebook for event info.

New Dispensary: Greenstone Society 338 S. Ashley St. Welcome, the Greenstone Society, Ann Arbor’s newest dispensary. Situated in a converted house on Ashley, the new shop is a great addition to the local scene. Search Facebook or Weedmaps for ‘Greenstone Society’ to find their menu and specials.

MI Legalize Fundraiser Sunday, December 11 - Crystal Bar and Grill, Westland The state’s leading legalization campaign, MILegalize, is having a fundraiser at Crystal in Westland. Join Michigan cannabis activists for an evening of food and entertainment while learning more about the MILegalize initiative. Head over to the MILegalize Facebook page for more info.

Puff Puff Pass Tour Part 2 Ft. Snoop Dogg Wednesday, December 21 - Masonic Temple, Detroit Musician, pop culture icon and outspoken cannabis enthusiast, Snoop Dogg, is coming to Detroit on his Puff Puff Pass tour this month. Snoop is joined by Bone Thugs-nharmony and Warren G at the Masonic Temple for what is sure to be this month’s largest smokedown.

Searchable lists updated daily at 34 


2016  /


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road trip

Road Trip- Noel Night

Tis’ the season to be jolly at the 44th annual Noel Night! The one time of year every business in Midtown Detroit opens its doors to the public for F-R-E-E! Places like The Detroit Institute of Arts, the Detroit Science Center, the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, and the N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art, while The Rhythm Society Orchestra will even be blowing a few notes and pulling a few strings! The students from Wayne State University College of Creative Studies transform boring blocks of ice into smooth creations during the Ice Scraper Challenge. There will also be horsedrawn carriage rides, family fun and games, theater performances, food trucks and more! Saturday,December 3rd. 5-10pm. Midtown Detroit. Free

Food addiction

Here in America, obesity levels have hit epidemic proportions, and the problem has only continued to grow. Americans are more sedentary than ever, and the public’s reliance on cheap, artificial foods has only compounded the health crisis. At Can

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2016  /

U-M Professor Ashley Gearhardt will talk about how cheap food “hooks” our brains, and offer strategies about how to control and manage eating habits. Part of the “Exploring the Mind” series of talks offered by the U-M Department of Psychology. --ZM

Thursday, December 15. 7pm. AADL Downtown, 343 S. Fifth Ave. 734-327-4200. Free

December © Copyright 2016 Rob Brezsny

ARIES (March 21-April 19): “I frequently tramped eight or ten miles through the deepest snow,” wrote naturalist Henry David Thoreau in Walden, “to keep an appointment with a beech-tree, or a yellow birch, or an old acquaintance among the pines.” I’d love to see you summon that level of commitment to your important rendezvous in the coming weeks, Aries. Please keep in mind, though, that your “most important rendezvous” are more likely to be with wild things, unruly wisdom, or primal breakthroughs than with pillars of stability, committee meetings, and business-as-usual. TAURUS (April 20-May 20): For you Tauruses, December is “I Accept and Love and Celebrate Myself Exactly How I Am Right Now” Month. To galvanize yourself, play around with this declaration by Oscar-winning Taurus actress Audrey Hepburn: “I’m a long way from the human being I’d like to be, but I’ve decided I’m not so bad after all.” Here are other thoughts to draw on during the festivities: 1. “If you aren’t good at loving yourself, you will have a difficult time loving anyone.” - Barbara De Angelis. 2. “The hardest challenge is to be yourself in a world where everyone is trying to make you be somebody else.” - E. E. Cummings. 3. “To accept ourselves as we are means to value our imperfections as much as our perfections.” - Sandra Bierig. 4. “We cannot change anything until we accept it.” - Carl Jung. GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Are your collaborative projects (including the romantic kind) evolving at a slower pace than you expected? Have they not grown as deep and strong as you’ve wished they would? If so, I hope you’re perturbed about it. Maybe that will motivate you to stop tolerating the stagnation. Here’s my recommendation: Don’t adopt a more serious and intense attitude. Instead, get loose and frisky. Inject a dose of blithe spirits into your togetherness, maybe even some high jinks and rowdy experimentation. The cosmos has authorized you to initiate ingenious surprises.

free will astrology

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): A journalist dared

composer John Cage to “summarize himself in a nutshell.” Cage said, “Get yourself out of whatever cage you find yourself in.” He might have added, “Avoid the nutshells that anyone tries to put you in.” This is always fun work to attend to, of course, but I especially recommend it to you Sagittarians right now. You’re in the time of year that’s close to the moment when you first barged out of your mom’s womb, where you had been housed for months. The coming weeks will be an excellent phase to attempt a similar if somewhat less extravagant trick. CANCER (June 21-July 22): I don’t recommend that you buy a cato’-nine-tails and whip yourself in a misguided effort to exorcise your demons. The truth is, those insidious troublemakers exult when you abuse yourself. They draw perverse sustenance from it. In fact, their strategy is to fool you into treating yourself badly. So, no. If you hope to drive away the saboteurs huddled in the sacred temple of your psyche, your best bet is to shower yourself with tender care, even luxurious blessings. The pests won’t like that, and -- if you commit to this crusade for an extended time -they will eventually flee. LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Nobel Prize-winning novelist Gabriel García Márquez loved yellow roses. He often had a fresh bloom on his writing desk as he worked, placed there every morning by his wife Mercedes Barcha. In accordance with the astrological omens, I invite you to consider initiating a comparable ritual. Is there a touch of beauty you would like to inspire you on a regular basis? It there a poetic gesture you could faithfully perform for a person you love? VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): “For a year I watched as something entered and then left my body,” testified Jane Hirshfield in her poem “The Envoy.” What was that mysterious *something*? Terror or happiness? She didn’t know. Nor could she decipher “how it came in” or “how it went out.” It hovered “where words could not reach it. It slept where light could not go.” Her experience led her to conclude that “There are openings in our lives of which we know nothing.” I bring this meditation to your attention, Virgo, because I suspect you are about to tune in to a mysterious

opening. But unlike Hirshfield, I think you’ll figure out what it is. And then you will respond to it with verve and intelligence. LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): A reporter at the magazine Vanity Fair asked David Bowie, “What do you consider your greatest achievement?” Bowie didn’t name any of his albums, videos, or performances. Rather, he answered, “Discovering morning.” I suspect that you Libras will attract and generate marvels if you experiment with accomplishments like that in the coming weeks. So yes, try to discover or rediscover morning. Delve into the thrills of beginnings. Magnify your appreciation for natural wonders that you usually take for granted. Be seduced by sources that emanate light and heat. Gravitate toward what’s fresh, blossoming, justin-its-early-stages.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Ac-

cording to traditional astrology, you Scorpios are not prone to optimism. You’re more often portrayed as connoisseurs of smoldering enigmas and shadowy intrigue and deep questions. But one of the most creative and successful Scorpios of the 20th century did not completely fit this description. French artist Claude Monet was renowned for his delightful paintings of sensuous outdoor landscapes. “Every day I discover even more beautiful things,” he testified. “It is intoxicating me, and I want to paint it all. My head is bursting.” Monet is your patron saint in the coming weeks. You will have more potential to see as he did than you’ve had in a long time. CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Hundreds of years ago, the Catholic Church’s observance of Lent

imposed a heavy burden. During this six-week period, extending from Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday, believers were expected to cleanse their sins through acts of self-denial. For example, they weren’t supposed to eat meat on Fridays. Their menus could include fish, however. And this loophole was expanded even further in the 17th century when the Church redefined beavers as being fish. (They swim well, after all.) I’m in favor of you contemplating a new loophole in regard to your own self-limiting behaviors, Capricorn. Is there a taboo you observe that no longer makes perfect sense? Out of habit, do you deny yourself a pleasure or indulgence that might actually be good for you? Wriggle free of the constraints. AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): “The Pacific Ocean was overflowing the borders of the map,” wrote Pablo Neruda in his poem “The Sea.” “There was no place to put it,” he continued. “It was so large, wild and blue that it didn’t fit anywhere. That’s why it was left in front of my window.” This passage is a lyrical approximation of what your life could be like in 2017. In other words, lavish, elemental, expansive experiences will be steadily available to you. Adventures that may have seemed impossibly big and unwieldy in the past will be just the right size. And it all begins soon. PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): “I have a deep fear of being too much,” writes poet Michelle K. “That one day I will find my someone, and they will realize that I am a hurricane. That they will step back and be intimidated by my muchness.” Given the recent astrological omens, Pisces, I wouldn’t be shocked if you’ve been having similar feelings. But now here’s the good news: Given the astrological omens of the next nine months, I suspect the odds will be higher than usual that you’ll encounter brave souls who’ll be able to handle your muchness. They may or may not be soulmates or your one-and-only. I suggest you welcome them as they are, with all of their muchness. Homework: If you had a baby clone of yourself to take care of, what would be your child-rearing strategy? Tell me at / december 2016   37





Across 1. General MDs, to insurers 5. Wish fulfiller 10. Booing sound 14. Safe, at sea 15. Storrs sch. 16. The vicinity 17. Blitzed a wanderer? 19. Differ just a bit 20. “My Favorite Things” jazzman, for short 21. Sydney’s state, for short 22. Two-faced god 23. #YOLO comment said near Vesuvius? 26. QB who throws to Odell 27. Warriors league 28. Fells with an ax 31. Caresses one’s cobra? 38. Private pension 39. Thanksgiving dessert 40. Drops on the ground? 41. On-line horn store? 46. Move slowly 47. Performed 48. Food drive piece 50. Greeting said to Jane’s Addiction’s guitarist? 59. Foe 60. With an ___ to grind 61. More aloof 62. “___ girl” 63. What a presidential candidate hopes to do to increase likelihood of victory, and this puzzle’s theme 65. Barbershop job 66. “Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain)” country singer Gary 67. Additional: Sp. 68. Gardening gizmo 69. Triangular sign word 70. Red Sox rivals Down 1. “The Empire Strikes Back” in the “Star Wars” series 2. Cigar choice 3. ___ colony 4. Events for a Ouija board 5. Paintball equipment



6. Cheapo prefix 20 7. Kung Pao chicken request 23 8. Stunned 9. When the murderer is revealed in 28 mysteries 10. Actor Andy Garcia, 38 by birth 11. Isfahan native 41 12. Injected stuff 13. Approval 18. Bluish-green 50 22. Hats, so to speak 24. Quick drink 59 25. Chains of life 28. Corny coffee 62 cup mug word (that 65 presumably comes with a pair) 68 29. Stat for Corey Kluber 30. Spa selection 32. ___ Pen (injector for allergic reactions) 33. Prior to 34. Take in 35. Link to, on Linked In 36. One tapped for a fraternity? 37. Lea she 42. Japanese superfood 43. Nice and neat 44. Crest letters 45. Kings of Leon’s label 46. Bill passer, e.g. 49. Hertz rival 50. Evergreen shrub 51. Opening words 52. Abominable snowmen 53. “Jersey Boys” character Frankie 54. Stranger in a strange land 55. Himalayan country 56. Looping rope 57. Abort, ___, Fail? 58. “Wonderfilled” cookies 63. “King Kong” star Wray 64. “... ___ scene!” (concluding words)

2016  /

























39 43




47 51


19 21














60 63


61 64





for crossword answers, go to

©2016 By Brendan Emmett Quigley (



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EMAIL / december 2016   39


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December 2016 Current Magazine  
December 2016 Current Magazine