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Buddhists settle into the Ozarks. BY MARA LEVERITT PAGE 10

THE INSIDER LIT’s high flying pay n The Little Rock National Airport, rolling in dough from parking lot, retail and airline fees, awarded 139 employees raises ranging from 1 to 5 percent. The Municipal Airport Commission voted not to give Executive Director Ron Mathieu a raise after it was revealed that he paid $40,000 last year for “advertising” on the football field at his son’s private Christian school, which had solicited Mathieu for a gift to pay for the field’s new turf. But Deputy Executive Director Bryan Malinowski, who with Mathieu charged $272,000 to the airport in expenses over a 12-month period ending in 2010, got a 3 percent raise. If pay information provided to the Times last November was accurate, and did not include any bonuse, that would bring his pay to $151,888. Media and Marketing Director Tiajuana Williams, who disputed the Times’ accurate reporting on Mathieu and who has complied grudgingly with FOI requests, got a 3 percent raise, bringing her pay of $96,174 to around $99,059. Human Resources Director Allen Williams, whose response to an FOIA inquiry last week on whether the airport had awarded bonuses was only “Yes,” requiring a follow-up inquiry, got a 4.5 percent raise, bringing his pay to $111,878. According to the airport’s attorney, there were no bonuses in 2011. There were 13 bonuses awarded in 2010; Mathieu did not get one. Malinowski got one for $5,000; Williams and Allen and other top brass got $3,000.

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n I mentioned earlier that sellers might have a buyer on the line for the Packet House, the historic vacant home on Carpetbagger Hill on Cantrell Road. An application on file at the Little Rock planning office says the Planning Commission June 2 will consider an application to use the property, zoned for offices, for a “classic grill style restaurant” with a focus on “local products and ingredients.” The house was used for a restaurant many years ago and little opposition is expected to the idea, filed by Maurie Mitchell of Rector Phillips Morse real estate. A cover letter doesn’t give a proposed name for the restaurant, but says Wes Ellis would be the future executive chef and manager. The restaurant would be on the ground floor of the 12,000-squarefoot structure. The second floor would be used for catering. The third floor would be for offices and storage. • MAY 11, 2011 3

Smart talk


Storm silver lining: Cheap loans

8 Major museum

n It seems like the bad news just keeps on coming this spring, what with the tornadoes, high wind, torrential rains and subsequent flooding. There’s a bit of sunshine in all this for those whose uninsured or under-insured property has been destroyed, however: low interest federal loans for those with damaged homes or property in the 13 Arkansas counties declared federal disaster areas and all adjacent counties. U.S. Small Business Administration spokesman William Koontz said that homeowners in eligible counties whose houses were damaged or destroyed could qualify for a government loan of up to $200,000 at 2.68 percent interest to cover any repair or reconstruction expenses not covered by insurance. In addition, both homeowners and renters in those counties are eligible to receive up to $40,000 at 2.68 percent interest to replace or repair uninsured items like furniture. Meanwhile, businesses are eligible to borrow up to $2 million at 4 percent interest to replace or restore assets not covered by insurance, and can file for “economic injury” loans to help cover lost business (such as in cases where a town was wiped out by a tornado or flood). The deadline for business economic injury loans is Feb. 2, 2012. The deadline to file for one of the homeowner or renter loans is July 1. Koontz said that if a homeowner or renter files for a loan and is approved, the offer remains active for an additional six months whether they accept the money or not, so those who suspect they may need the money down the road should go ahead and file. Paperwork can be filled out at any FEMA disaster recovery center, which Koontz says should be up and running in towns affected by recent disasters soon. Applicants must present their credit history, show that they have the ability to repay the loans, and prove they have at least some collateral for all loans over $14,000 (though the SBA won’t turn down a loan for lack of collateral). Damaged luxury items like RV’s, vacation homes, airplanes, swimming pools and pleasure boats are ineligible. For more information, visit the SBA website at, or call the SBA disaster assistance hotline at 1-800-659-2955.

A progress report from Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville. — By Leslie Newell Peacock


10 The Tibetan Ozarks

Newton County serves a growing Buddhist community. — By Mara Leveritt

Vote! n Our annual readers’ choice poll for the Best of Arkansas in dozens of categories from retail to restaurants is live now at Voting continues through June 15. Online users are only allowed to submit a poll once. Readers who complete at least 75 percent of the poll will be automatically entered into a drawing to win $100.

Live in Jonesboro at your own peril n According to analysis by Sperling’s Best Places published recently in the New York Times, Jonesboro is the second most likely metro area in the United States to experience a natural disaster. The study took into account historical data of where tornados, floods, drought and hail have occurred and based earthquake risk on the U.S. Geological Survey assessments. The Dallas-PlanoIrving area topped the list. The Little Rock metro area did not rank in the top eight highest risk places, but it and the Memphis metro area were among those designated at the highest end of the study’s risk scale. Areas in the Pacific Northwest and Mountain West ranked at the lower end of the scale. Corvallis, Ore., is least likely to experience a natural disaster, according to the study. See the map at or by using your phone’s QR reader above.

44 Veggie dining

A Native’s Guide to restaurants that serve meatless meals in Central Arkansas. — By Arkansas Times Staff

DEPARTMENTS 3 The Insider 4 Smart Talk 5 The Observer 6 Letters 7 Orval 8-17 News 18 Opinion 20 Arts & Entertainment 34 Dining 37 Crossword/ Tom Tomorrow 46 Lancaster ON THE COVER: Buddhist monk Khentrul Rinpoche.

Words VOLUME 37, NUMBER 36

n There’s more than one way to misuse an of. We’ve written several times about the missing of, as in “Lend me a couple dollars.” The omission is sufficient grounds to deny the loan, if you needed any. But the instrusive of is equally offensive. Bill Shepherd writes, “I’m shocked to find the solecism ‘How big of an impact ... ’ in the April 27 issue of the Times. How did this get past the proofreader?” I spoke with the proofreader, whom I know well, and he manfully said he had no excuses except that he’d barely returned home from a delicate mission with Navy Seals in Pakistan when he was called out to rescue children from a school bus trapped by rising water. We’ve put him on probation. n A reader finds fault with an editorial4 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

Doug S mith

ist, a rare occurrence, noting this passage: “So when the Prince of Wales and the new Duchess of Cambridge became man and wife, it was hard to resist crying out in another tongue with ancient roots, one that has flowered anew in our time.” The recent bridegroom was not the Prince of Wales, but the son of the Prince of Wales. Our reader suggests the editorialist could learn from an old Cockney joke — “What do the Prince of Wales, a gorilla, and a bald man have in common. One is the heir apparent. One has a ‘airy

parent. And one has no ‘air apparent.” n “With the New England Patriots’ selection of Central Arkansas defensive end Markell Carter in the sixth round of the NFL Draft on Saturday, Central Arkansas Coach Clint Conque has a new name for his school. ‘We’re becoming Defensive End U,’ Conque said. ‘Penn State was Tailback U. BYU had their quarterbacks.’ ” I fear the coach has been surreptitiously dipping into Chaucer and Milton when he should have been studying the ESPN magazine. Penn State is, or was, known as Linebacker U. Southern Cal answered to Tailback U. And while BYU has fielded an impressive bunch of quarterbacks, Purdue claims to be Quarterback U.

ARKANSAS TIMES (ISSN 0164-6273) is published each week by Arkansas Times Limited Partnership, 201 East Markham Street, 200 Heritage Center West, P.O. Box 34010, Little Rock, Arkansas, 72203, phone (501) 375-2985. Periodical postage paid at Little Rock, Arkansas, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to ARKANSAS TIMES, P.O. Box 34010, Little Rock, AR, 72203. Subscription prices are $42 for one year, $78 for two years. Subscriptions outside Arkansas are $49 for one year, $88 for two years. Foreign (including Canadian) subscriptions are $168 a year. For subscriber service call (501) 375-2985. Current single-copy price is 75¢, free in Pulaski County. Single issues are available by mail at $2.50 each, postage paid. Payment must accompany all single-copy orders. Reproduction or use in whole or in part of the contents without the written consent of the publishers is prohibited. Manuscripts and artwork will not be returned or acknowledged unless sufficient return postage and a self-addressed stamped envelope are included. All materials are handled with due care; however, the publisher assumes no responsibility for care and safe return of unsolicited materials. All letters sent to ARKANSAS TIMES will be treated as intended for publication and are subject to ARKANSAS TIMES’ unrestricted right to edit or to comment editorially.



The Observer has taught school out at UALR for 10 years now, doing the adjunct thing both to support our journalism habit and because it’s a hell of a lot of fun. Getting inside the heads of young folks — even the ones that don’t seem to know their posterior from a hole in the ground — always makes us feel youthful and invigorated, especially when one of them admits they learned a lil’ sumpin’ in our class. For the past few years, we’ve been teaching Film as Literature. Though profs approach that class all different kinds of ways, our way is this: Read a book that fits a broad theme — “Dracula” for vampirism and The Other; “The Great Gatsby” for the corruption of the American Dream, and so on — and then spend the next few weeks watching films based on that theme while discussing them in conjunction with the book. So it was that the night after we heard Osama Bin Laden was (finally, finally) dead, we were preparing to show a film on a theme with quite a bit of bleed-over on current events: The Cinema of Revenge. The Observer loves revenge flicks: “Once Upon a Time in the West,” “Gangs of New York,” “Carrie,” “Straw Dogs,” “Memento,” “Old Boy,” even stuff like the “Death Wish” franchise. We love ’em all. Just behind Time Travel movies, a larrupin’ revenger might be our favorite kind of movie. Films are our cultural daydreams, and there is, The Observer would submit, something that calms our collective minds in settling down with a bucket of popcorn for two hours in which the victim eventually becomes the victor. We are creatures who demand symmetry in our morality — God vs. the Devil; good vs. evil; the Big Bad Wolf vs. that trio of industrious pigs — and so human beings tend to love a film in which the karmic books are, at last, squared. We probably love those movies, The Observer would further submit, because that coldest brand of justice happens so rarely in real life. Here’s the hard but terrible truth, from your Ol’ Pal: Regardless of what your grandma told you, Bad People do not always get their just desserts, and there’s a good chance that when they die, they won’t even have Hellfire to look forward to. You should brace yourself for that possibility. That nagging suspicion might be why revenge films are so popular as well. We’ve thought about this business a

lot this semester, which is why we found it so odd to walk into a classroom the day after Bin Laden was killed. As luck would have it, The Observer walked into a similar classroom a few days after the towers fell in New York almost ten years ago; same school, same building, in fact. That day, we addressed the shell-shocked young folks, and tried to assure them that things like literature and art and the search for truth were still just as important as they were the week before; before CNN began airing video of fire and flames and the jumpers descending. By then, even we weren’t quite sure it mattered anymore. Last Monday night, the class was as jubilant as that congregation in 2001 had been somber. Something had, at long last, been accomplished, after a decade when it seemed that all our desires for some greater moral accounting had been shoved aside. The night before, The Observer had watched people literally dancing in the streets in front of the gates of the White House. On the one hand, our caveman brain felt like singing with them. Our more rational self, however, was prone to intrude; to say: Is this really who we are? The Observer said as much to our class. We always like to bring dusty old literature back around to modern events, and this was one of those times, especially given the theme of the film we were about to watch. We didn’t push it too far, however. Instead, we let the discussion run where it would, which was often to some collective daydream where the great bronze balance in the sky had at last been tipped. Then, together, we turned out the lights and settled in to watch a film about revenge. Leave the philosophy to the philosophy profs, The Observer reasoned in the flickering dark. There will be time enough for reflection next semester, when we are all older, if not wiser.

Tornadoes, floods, torrential rains — the weather in the Natural State seems to be going more than a little nuts this spring. With that in mind, The Observer presents: The top five most-unwelcome weather phenomena created by global warming: 1) Typhootietang 2) Perme-sized Hail 3) The Roving Cloud of Charlie Sheen’s Atomized Blood Plasma 4) Chocolate Rain 5) F-5 Urineado • MAY 11, 2011 5


Grow up I am writing to let you know how disgusted I am about the cover of your May 4 issue. Are you trying to turn into a sleazy men’s magazine? Was there really no other way to convey your message than to use an objectifying picture of a woman in a tiny bikini? What about a picture of children on a slip ’n slide? A bowl of ice cream? I expect such stupidity from the Dem-Gazette, not from you. Grow up. Hope Donovan Rider Maumelle

Summer fun The other day I went to get my weekly copy of the Times and was slightly concerned to see all the copies were gone, save for one at the bottom of the machine. Seeing the lovely young lady on the cover and ladies throughout this week’s issue, I understand why this one was a “hot seller.” Thanks for the summer issue. I always look forward to it. Sam Parnell Benton

Begging questions Recently, a reader’s letter deploring common errors in prose noted that politicians incorrectly use “beg the question” to mean “raise the question.” The gentleman said that the phrase means to avoid the question. The gentleman was wrong. Begging the question is a type of logical fallacy. It means to use the point to be proven as part of the argument to prove the point itself. Example: Donald Trump is intelligent because he wears an outlandish comb-over. Bizarre hairstyles are a sign of great intelligence in men. Clint Miller Little Rock

The bike trail money Ernest Dumas directed some disparaging remarks to U.S. Rep. Steve Womack, who had voted to turn down federal matching money for a bike trail in the Fayetteville/Bentonville area. I am a biker, love it and ride most of the important races. I have family in Bentonville. I know I would’ve enjoyed and used the proposed bike trail. There’s only one problem. We can’t afford it. I don’t care if it has 50 percent matching federal money or 70 percent matching money, we cannot afford a bike trail with all of the other items that are on our agenda. I am even for doing something about Social Security and I am on the take there myself. You can’t have all the guns and butter you want. There has to be a balance somewhere. As a nation, we’ve lost that concept 6 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

and think we can afford everything. James R. Wallace Little Rock

Tale of the lottery On March 22, a Hot Springs woman, after digging through her car, discovered she was in possession of a $1 million Arkansas Scholarship Lottery ticket. What a Cinderella story. Except that, by her own admission to the local paper, “Two weeks ago, we received an eviction notice. I was on unemployment, literally. I spent my last $4 on a lottery ticket for two games.” Wow. If that doesn’t sum up who is play-

ing the lottery in Arkansas, I don’t know what does. Yet she wasn’t finished. “I walked into the food stamp office ... ” she continued in the paper. “I pulled the ticket out, went to the website on my phone and threw up.” Well, Mary JoAnne, that makes two of us. You are on unemployment, without a home, either applying or extending food stamps, and you spend “my last $4” on lottery tickets.  The best part is somehow this woman has a cell phone with Internet access!! You CANNOT make this up!  Since our legislators have deemed it necessary to meet annually, here’s a suggestion

from a taxpayer who feels like he purchased part of Mary JoAnne’s ticket: Anyone hitting an Arkansas State Scholarship lottery ticket over $200 must fill out a form. If it is subsequently determined that the winner received any sort of state, local, or federal aid (food stamps, unemployment, HUD housing, etc.), they are cut off from all such aid. Play the lottery on your dollar, not mine. Anthony Lloyd Hot Springs

Same old same old U.S. Rep. Tim Griffin offers the same old solutions as his mentors. Wonder how he feels about the Karl Rove tax cuts which have produced zero jobs and exploded the deficit? Revenue increases would help to pay for the wars, Medicare etc., but don’t tell that to the Repubs.  It goes against their lies about spending being the only problem.  More money would help the budget also. Steve Wheeler North Little Rock

Hostage takers Congratulations to President Obama and the Democrats for successfully negotiating the recent release of the hostage federal budget. For weeks, Republicans threatened to allow federal funding to expire if demands weren’t met. Congressman Tim Griffin said he would not be responsible if the government shut down as a result. Tim Griffin was blaming Democrats for his own responsibility in the Republican conspiracy to shut down the government. Typical hostage situation. The only Republican president to balance his budget was Eisenhower. Republicans are just not very good at budgeting. Gene Mason Jacksonville

Prison reform It is quite understandable that the state desires to find ways to reduce the economic burden from penal institutions. The current and past proposals target “short-term, non-violent” offenders for early release. This has been tried before and the recidivism rate – as well as the prison population – has only grown. How can these new changes save taxpayer money when release of more of these offenders will equate to more dollars spent retrying them and sending them back through the judicial system? The less violent the offense, the greater the recidivism, studies show. It is time for a different approach. The system needs to look and see that other states have had success in releasing longterm offenders. Most states release first offenders serving life sentences and every statistic shows their recidivism rates fall below those of “non-violent” offenders. James Guss Cummins Unit (Guss is serving a sentence of life without parole.)

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GAMBLERS After many casinos along the Mississippi River closed due to flooding, the Arkansas Racing Commission granted the Southland racino in West Memphis “emergency status” to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The Arkansas Reporter

Phone: 501-375-2985­ Fax: 501-375-3623 Arkansas Times Online home page: E-mail: ■


GRETCHEN HALL The interim director of the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau was chosen to be the new director. Her name was added for consideration by the Little Rock Advertising and Promotion Commission by Mayor Mark Stodola after a search committee initially produced two candidates from other cities. THE RIVER MARKET Juanita’s Cafe and Bar, one of Little Rock’s oldest restaurant/venues, announced that it will move from South Main Street to a space on the eastern end of Clinton Avenue in June. More details on page 34. CIRCUIT JUDGE L.T. SIMES The Arkansas Supreme Court decided, for the second time, not to go along with a recommendation by the Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission to remove the Phillips County circuit judge from the bench for ethical violations. He got a reprimand instead. IT WAS A BAD WEEK FOR…

FLOODING Creeks and rivers — especially the Mississippi and the White Rivers — continued to rise, leaving communities inundated throughout the eastern half of the state. High waters forced I-40 to close in both directions, forcing lengthy detours. REPUBLICAN U.S. REP. RICK CRAWFORD During his congressional campaign, he said he’d paid off health care debts from his 1998 bankruptcy. The Arkansas-Democrat Gazette has apparently uncovered evidence that suggests that was lie. But rather than answer the question of whether he settled the debts in 2010 for campaign reasons, Crawford blamed the predicament on his opponents and asked for an FBI investigation into the leak of his credit history. THE LITTLE ROCK ZOO Mary, the Little Rock Zoo’s 60-year-old elephant, died after a bout with terminal cancer. An animal interest group has called on the zoo to send its remaining elephant, Ellen, to a sanctuary for her final years. 8 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

BUILDING AN AMERICAN ART MUSEUM: Cranes in the center are putting copper on the roof of the 20th century art pavilion. When their work is done, the center will be excavated to create one of two spring-fed pools.

Art history Crystal Bridges is making it, with new $800 million. BY LESLIE NEWELL PEACOCK

n Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art is “the project of the decade,” David Houston, the museum’s director of curatorial and one of many imports who’ve left major museums to come to the wilds of Arkansas, told a reporter at last week’s press tour of the grounds and buildings in Bentonville. He said museum professionals from all over are clamoring for invitations to the festivities planned for the Nov. 11 opening. Among them, no doubt, are skeptics, those whom Director Don Bacigalupi said are still resisting the idea that heiress Alice Walton will open a first-rate and successful American museum on the Ozark plateau. There are probably fewer skeptics as of last Wednesday, about the museum’s future at any rate, when Bacigalupi announced that the Walton Family Foundation has given the museum $800 million dollars in operating, endowment and capital needs funding. Add that to the $411 million or so already invested in the museum by the foundation and Helen Walton, who donated $250 million in 2005, and you’re talking some real money. Of the new gift, $350 million will go toward operating the 200,000-square-foot, multi-gallery museum, library and meeting space, a Moshe Safdie design valued on the museum’s income tax reports at $100 million. A drawdown of 4 percent a year from

that $350 million fund should produce $14 million for operations. Bacigalupi said it’s expected the museum will cost between $16 million and $20 million a year to run — more than the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum and perhaps equivalent to the St. Louis Art Museum. Another $325 million will endow the museum for future acquisitions and other initiatives, and $125 million will be invested for future capital needs. The director — who is said to be superb at fund-raising — said the museum has made “tremendous progress” in obtaining gifts from outside the Walton family, from local and national foundations, corporations and individuals. He declined to say how they compared to the scale of the $800 million Walton Family gift, but said they were “major-major.” There will be revenues from the restaurant and gift shop — which will feature a kiosk where you can download a digital print of a work in the collection, but the museum hasn’t decided on an entry fee yet. Bacigalupi said the museum wants to be “accessible.” The scope of the museum is beginning to be felt more clearly as the architecturally stunning complex of buildings tucked into an Ozark ravine draws to completion. Besides the seven galleries — which total about 40,000 square feet of exhibit space

(twice that of the Arkansas Arts Center) — there is a library with 60,000 “items,” librarian Catherine Peterson said, including still-secret documents and ephemera that relate to the collection; several art studios, one of which will be stocked with art supplies and open to the public; a restaurant featuring “low Midwest, high Southern cuisine” (as described by food and beverage head Case Dighero); a Marlon Blackwell-designed gift store, an amphitheater; a “community showcase” featuring art from nearby institutions, and a “Great Hall” for concerts and films. But besides the art and educational opportunities, surely one of the most appealing things about Crystal Bridges is the grounds — a “Kindred Spirit” setting threaded by five trail systems, some paved, some soft-surface, that wend their way over the creek and past springs and rock ledges in the Waltons’ hilly 100-acre ravine. Last Wednesday, reporters were led on a tour through the galleries, each devoted to a historical period and arranged in chronological order. Curator Kevin Murphy, whose expertise is in 18th and 19th century landscape, said that along with Gilbert StuContinued on page 17


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drivers Please be aWare, it’s arkansas state laW: Use of bicycles or animals Every person riding a bicycle or an animal, or driving any animal drawing a vehicle upon a highway, shall have all the rights and all of the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle, except those provisions of this act which by their nature can have no applicability.

overtaking a bicycle The driver of a motor vehicle overtaking a bicycle proceeding in the same direction on a roadway shall exercise due care and pass to the left at a safe distance of not less than three feet (3’) and shall not again drive to the right side of the roadway until safely clear of the overtaken bicycle.

yoUr cycling friends thank yoU! • MAY 11, 2011 9

NEWTON COUNTY RETREAT LAND: A group of Buddhists gather to bless the land.

‘Simple, unelaborate living’ Buddhists fit easily into a traditional Ozark lifestyle. BY MARA LEVERITT

10 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES


here once was a log barn on property deep in Newton County. For close to a century, it stood its rocky ground in the mountains near Parthenon, slumping and rusting over the years, like so many old Ozark structures. But this particular barn, close to the Little Buffalo River, is coming back to life. Here, on the far side of the world from northeastern Tibet, it is being restored and rebuilt — for rebirth as a Buddhist temple. “That thing was dying,” says Jim Westbrook, an architect and Buddhist who has helped work on it. “It was sinking into the ground.” Westbrook’s father is an Arkansas Presbyterian minister. He cannot remember a time when he wasn’t interested in theology and religion. After a stint in the Peace Corps in the ’60s, he studied at the University of Arkansas and eventually worked there as an architect. By then, he says, he was “getting more and more interested” in Tibetan Buddhism. When a Peace Corps friend told him about a month-long course at a monas-

tery outside Kathmandu, Westbrook applied. “The gist of the letter I got back was, ‘Don’t come if you’re not serious.’ ” He quit his job at the university, took off to spend a year in Asia, studied with a number of lamas — or teachers — in the region, and he’s been a practicing Buddhist ever since. After a career spent mostly in California and Wisconsin, he returned to Arkansas in 1992. He built a house for himself on Newton County’s Mount Sherman. Westbrook recalls when he and other Buddhists in northwest Arkansas heard that a monk from Tibet had selected Newton County as the site for a retreat center. He says, “We were impressed he had the good taste to find Arkansas.” Since Westbrook has listened to the monk teach, and the two have rolled up their sleeves to work together on the barn temple, his admiration has grown. He is one of several Buddhists in the area and from as far away as Little Rock who regularly attend Sunday meditation at the retreat center now being developed by the monk Khentrul Lodrö Thayé Rinpoche. Khentrul Rinpoche (Rin’-po-shay),

as he is less formally called, “has a real sensitivity to the amalgamation of the two cultures,” Westbrook says. “And he has a vision. He’s kind of a whirlwind. He’s extremely erudite. And he has a gift for languages. He speaks Tibetan, of course, and Chinese. And now he’s picking up colloquial English.”

he hopes his new work will “serve to benefit beings in this country, in Tibet, and the entire world by protecting many from suffering of body and mind, and spreading peace and happiness in all directions … like the radiant sun that benefits us all.” Rinpoche’s reputation as a clear teacher, a living example of the dharma, and an amiable fellow spread quickly. As Westbrook puts it: “I’ve known a lot of lamas, and I can say he’s personable, highly educated, and a joy to work with. There are teachers and there are teachers. Some present the dharma in such a way that you get, not just information, but understanding. Rinpoche is one of those.” Before long, Rinpoche developed what many described to me as “a huge student base.” He is the primary teacher at Buddhist groups, or sanghas, in Alaska, Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, Oregon and Utah, and he visits many others. He occasionally returns to his monastery in Tibet. But, though he remains abbot there, America became Rinpoche’s home upon the death of the monk who invited him here — and this is where his story joins that of the barn.

‘Send a scholar’

In casual conversation, Westbrook and others at the center refer to the monk as Rinpoche, and I will do that too. He was not at the center when I visited. That’s not unusual, as the monk travels almost constantly, visiting Buddhist groups across the United States. But teaching is not Rinpoche’s only work. He is also the abbot of Mardö Tashi Choling, a 200-year-old monastery in the Amdo province of Tibet. There are more than 300 monks and 100 children at the monastery, for whom Rinpoche, even from this distance, provides food, lodging, education and a temple. Amdo province is famous for producing some of Tibet’s most famous spiritual leaders, including the Dalai Lama. Rinpoche’s monastery was one of many sites of learning and scholarship destroyed during what Buddhists mildly call “the unrest” that has marked Tibet for the past half-century. Mardö Tashi Choling is slowly being rebuilt, and Rinpoche has headed that effort since 1993 when, while still in his early 20s, he was enthroned as the monastery’s abbot. Less than a decade later, Rinpoche’s responsibilities expanded. An aging Tibetan monk in California was worried that traditional Buddhist teachings were being diluted in this country by inadequately trained teachers. The monk wrote to fellow monks in Tibet, asking that they send a scholar from his tradition to deepen the understanding of Tibetan Buddhism in this country — and, ultimately, to replace him. Rinpoche was chosen. Though needed as abbot, he was also a natural choice for the task. Though still young, he had studied dharma, the Buddhist path of discipline, for more than 20 years, with teachers at three monasteries in Tibet and India. He held the Buddhist equivalent of two Ph.Ds. He was recognized as a scholar at the highest level. In a brief biography on the retreat center’s website, Rinpoche wrote that his spiritual advisor in Tibet gave him “a very deep and insistent directive” to leave his home in the monastery and travel to the United States. Though Rinpoche knew little English, he felt he had “no alternative but to comply.” He arrived in the U.S. in 2002, and, with the help of an interpreter, began teaching Nyingma, one of the mainstream

‘Look at Arkansas’

JUST WHAT HE WAS LOOKING FOR: The Buffalo River provides the environment Khentrul Rinpoche wanted for the site of his retreat center.

CAVE TEMPLE: Caves provide places where Buddhists can meditate “inside the earth.” traditions of Tibetan Buddhism, wherever invited. Buddhists, like adherents to many eastern religions, do not proselytize. Rather, Westbrook says, since coming to the United States, Rinpoche has begun learning about Western religions. “Buddha warned against sectarianism — exclusivism, the ‘our way is the only way’ view of other religions,” West-

brook says. “The great Buddhist teachers always say sectarianism is poison. Rinpoche teaches in a very non-sectarian way.” Rinpoche’s students say his English is good and getting better, but that when he teaches and wants to be very exact, he uses the services of his secretary and translator. On his website, he writes that

Knowing that he would continue to travel and teach for many years, Rinpoche nevertheless wanted a place to settle — a place to call home. He asked two of his students in Lafayette, La., to find him a place where he could build a retreat center, and where students eventually could come to him. He did not want it to be on either coast. He wanted mountains, but not the Rockies. Someplace with rivers and caves would be good. “People kept saying, ‘Look at Arkansas,’ ” one of his students recalls. Finally, the couple checked out Newton County. They’d found a piece of land they wanted to show Rinpoche. They took him to a mountainous, wooded site with no buildings on it. The 146 acres were nestled between a bluff and a creek. A short distance away, the creek joined the Little Buffalo River. Rinpoche liked the spot at once. He especially liked its caves. Caves have played an important role in Buddhism as shrines and places of meditation for at least a thousand years. Buddhists admire the stability of mountains. It’s a quality they seek for themselves. They see caves as places where they can meditate “inside the earth.” Remarkably, much of the Tibetan plateau has a cave-pocked limestone geology similar to that of the Ozarks. Continued on page 12 • MAY 11, 2011 11

SACRED LAND: Buddhists participate in a ceremony consecrating their land in Newton County. The Louisiana couple bought land in 2007 and donated it to Rinpoche’s nonprofit. Rinpoche spoke of it as becoming, not just his future home, but “the navel” of his work in the West. The first thing he, Westbrook and visiting students did was to enclose a small cave a few hundred yards from the river with a façade of wood, glass and native stone. They topped the entryway with a traditional, upswept roof, painted wooden parts sacred red and saffron yellow, and flanked the new cave temple with lines of fluttering Buddhist prayer flags in red, yellow, blue, green and white.

‘Be content’

Dan Grussing, a carpenter in his mid50s who helped build the cave temple, says it will be used for specific teachings that Rinpoche deems appropriate for that environment — “teachings that will thrive in the energy of that cave.” As a young man, Grussing, who is originally from Indiana, was working on a master’s degree in public administration, with plans to work for the U.S. Forest Service, when he became “fully immersed in Buddhism.” He and a friend 12 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

“If there’s an old building Rinpoche can fix up, that’s what he wants to do. He wants to preserve the cultural feel of what’s here. He wants to be as off-the-grid as possible and very careful that we don’t pollute.” quit school and “never looked back,” he says. They traveled the world together, studying Buddhism and making retreats. Then, Grussing says, he “went out in the world for about 20 years.” That is, he lived in Los Angeles, joined the carpenters union, and lived a rather conventional life as a Buddhist. That life led him to Khentrul Rinpoche. Grussing moved to Arkansas soon after Rinpoche selected the land. The friend he traveled with has since come too. Grussing is vice-president of Rinpoche’s nonprofit and represents Rinpoche when the monk is away. “Rinpoche wants to keep this place

simple,” he says. “He wants only what’s necessary to teach. He wants it to have as little impact on the environment as possible and for people to be content with what they have. He wants for the center to be sustainable and his students to be selfsufficient.” Soon after the land was donated, the nonprofit was able to buy 106 acres on a nearby ridge. That property will be divided into five-acre lots for Buddhists who want to live near the retreat or have a place of their own when they visit. In 2009, when a 3.5-acre farmstead adjoining the land became available, that was purchased too. The farmhouse is now being converted into the dreamed-of

retreat center. And the barn has begun its transformation — keeping its tin roof. “If there’s an old building Rinpoche can fix up,” Grussing says, “that’s what he wants to do. He wants to preserve the cultural feel of what’s here. He wants to be as off-the-grid as possible and very careful that we don’t pollute.” Grussing, who built his own small home on the ridge, oversees most of the construction. “We don’t have a lot of manpower ourselves,” he notes, “so we’ve done a lot of business with local tradesmen and contractors. I think we’ve had a positive economic impact.” The impact has been mutual. “I’ve been very, very impressed with the people who live around here,” Grussing says. “I’ve lived many places, but never anywhere where I’ve met people like here. Their integrity, honesty and trust — I’ve been astounded. They look you in the eye, shake your hand and that’s how you work together. The local guys actually prefer not to have contracts.” As to how “the local guys” view the Buddhists, Grussing says: “Their reaction to us seems open. They watch to see if we Continued on page 14 • MAY 11, 2011 13

operate with integrity like they do, and if we do, they embrace us.”

‘Live with little desire’

Last October, at a ceremony attended by students from around the country — and briefly, by members of a Newton County horseback riding club — Rinpoche consecrated the land, naming it Katog Choling Mountain Retreat Center, or Katog Rit’hröd in Tibetan. He explained why it beckoned him. “First, it is a quiet and remote environment, endowed with mountains, water, forests, practice caves and other naturally occurring supportive attributes,” he said. “Second, it is complete with all the outer supportive elements for simple and unelaborate living with the capacity to provide basic sustenance of food, water and so forth. Third, for practitioners who come, their needs can be met simply, in accord with the two previous qualities, if they cultivate and live with little desire and greater contentment.” A couple who’d come from Hawaii for the blessing noticed that another nearby property, complete with a house and swimming pool, was also for sale. They purchased it and donated it, and Rinpoche now plans to make it a healing center. As one woman who attended the consecration explained: “Rinpoche is very aware of the income level in Newton County and how many people need medical care. Among his students, there are many medical doctors and nurses, acupuncturists, and traditional healers. The resources available to him run the gamut. So he wants to take advantage of that for everyone here.” Despite so much activity, only about a dozen people actually live on the lands associated with the retreat center. And two of those, Rinpoche and his secretary, travel more than they are here. Grussing’s old traveling pal oversees the house that’s slated to become the healing center. Two women have established themselves in separate, small houses, where they are making three-year retreats. Isolated and committed to meditation, they are supplied twice monthly with food that they have paid for in advance.

‘Steel horses’

Three years ago, a family from Juneau, Alaska, bought a house on property across the creek so that they could live and raise their middle-school-aged son as part of Rinpoche’s dharma center. They had planned and saved for the move for years. Bob Briggs, a retired lawyer, went to Alaska with a team from the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund after the Exxon oil spill. There he met his wife, Kim Corrette, a registered nurse, who introduced him to Buddhist practice. In 2007, the two were part of a group of nearly 60 Americans 14 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

NUNS: Traditional Buddhist haircuts and robes are still a rare site in Jasper. who went with Rinpoche when he visited his monastery in Tibet. Corrette says that being welcomed by the monks there gave her the sense that a “prophesy had been fulfilled.” Their son, 12-year-old Tenzing, explains with relish that an ancient prophesy foretold that Buddhism would move to the west in a time of “steel horses and iron birds.” (The prophecy, which is said to date to the 8th Century, is often translated: “When the iron bird flies, and horses run on wheels, the Tibetan people will be scattered like ants across the world, and the dharma will come to the land of the red man.”) Two Buddhist nuns also live here. They use the title “ani,” the Tibetan word for “aunt,” as a prefix to their Buddhist names due to the belief that the Buddha’s aunt, or ani, was Buddhism’s first nun. Ani Drolma moved to Arkansas from Eureka, Calif., where she worked for a clinic as a medical transcriptionist. She still holds the same job, with the same clinic, working now via the Internet. Drolma lives and works in a single room in the sangha house, but she also oversees the center, especially its commodious kitchen. Recent rains, which recently flooded the creek, blocking access to the house,

have also driven ants into it, a bit to Drolma’s dismay. As she is Buddhist, and therefore strives to cause no intentional harm to any being, bug spray is out of the question. So Drolma has posted notes around the sink asking those who use the kitchen to store all food and dry all dishes and counters as part of her effort to “Help relocate our ant guests.”

‘Everyone froze’

Drolma wears the maroon robes and close-cropped hair expected of Buddhist nuns. Each element of her robe is symbolic. Her shorn head symbolizes renunciation. Drolma explains, “It means that you have no more attachment to your looks.” She says that her transition to Buddhist nun was profound enough that, after being ordained she “went through a half-year of psychological reorientation as to who I was.” Her family had some re-orienting to do too, after they first saw her in her robes and with shaven head. “My mother pretended there was nothing different,” Drolma says. “Then she told our relatives, ‘That was the stupidest thing I’ve ever seen.’ ” After a pause and in a softer tone, she adds: “My brother said it warmed his heart.” Around Jasper, the presence of Ani Drolma and the area’s other nun, Ani Ten-

dron, has prompted some reorientation, as well. Drolma recalls her first visit to Miller Hardware, where, she says, “Everyone froze. I think they were in a state of shock.” A quiet, professional woman, Drolma took in the situation and told a clerk, “Now, I’d like to look at your routers.” Nevertheless, Drolma says, “Everyone’s very polite, maybe just a little disengaged. They tend to look askance. The kids are a lot more oblivious to me, especially the teen-agers.” Tendron and Drolma wear the robes in part, they say, “so that others will see the possibility of being a Buddhist monastic in the West.” Yet there are times when it’s just not practical to adhere absolutely to Buddhist traditions. One of those is when you want to get from here to there on foot in the Ozarks — when you want to go hiking. On such occasions a nun can opt to change out of the robes. “I don’t think we’re legal when we take them off,” Tendron laughs. “We’re just Westerners trying to get through the woods.” Tendron’s house is a few twisting miles from the center. She drives a pickup truck with a bumper sticker that says, “My other vehicle is the Mahayana.” Mayahana represents one of the two major traditions of Buddhism today; it’s usually translated as “the great vehicle.” But when local people ask a friend of Tendron’s what her sticker means, he sometimes says, “Big truck!” Drolma hopes that the fledgling retreat center “is the beginning of a Buddhist university, with many qualified, authentic Tibetan teachers.” Already, the center holds a shedra, an intense educational program, for two weeks of the year. Drolma hopes the center will evolve into “a quiet little place where people do three-year retreats, and shorter retreats, and where there are teachings — and someday a year-long shedra, with lots of monks teaching.” The idea of retreats, like the practice of meditation, is central to Buddhist life. Buddhists meditate as a form of mental training in the belief that, as one monk put it, “although outer conditions are important contributive factors to our well-being or suffering, in the end, the mind can override that.” The goal is liberation, Buddhists say. Meditation is the method. Much as physical training strengthens the body, mental training through meditation allows a person to develop the mental states that foster healing from old wounds, growth beyond self-imposed limits, and a life that’s beneficial to self and others. The retreat center exists to offer Buddhists — and those interested in learning more about Buddhism — an opportunity to step away from their regular lives, howContinued on page 16

DORJEE: Helped form the Tibetan Cultural Institute of Arkansas.

Teaching the arts of Tibet UAF helps preserve a threatened culture. BY MARA LEVERITT “Whether one believes in a religion or not, and whether one believes in rebirth or not, there isn’t anyone who doesn’t appreciate kindness and compassion.” — The Dalai Lama


n Tibetan Buddhism, the title “geshe” suggests mastery. In many eastern monasteries, which also serve as universities, it is the equivalent of a doctorate. The Dalai Lama is a geshe. Dr. Sidney Burris earned his Ph.D. here in the United States. He is largely responsible for bringing the Dalai Lama to the University of Arkansas campus this week. As director of Honors Studies at the school’s Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences, he also helped establish another geshe on the Fayetteville campus. Burris says that, as far as he knows, his friend, Geshe Thupten Dorjee, a Tibetan trained as a monk in India, “is the only geshe who holds a faculty position at an American university.” Together, Burris and Geshe Dorjee founded the Tibetan Cultural Institute of Arkansas to provide information about Tibet “in an academic, educational way,” Burris says, “so people can draw their own conclusions about what’s been going on there since 1959.” They also created an oral history project called Tibetans in Exile Today (TEXT). Participating students study Tibetan culture, then travel to India to preserve, via video interviews, the stories of the oldest refugees in India who remember life in Tibet before 1959. That was the year that the Dalai Lama, along with thousands of other Tibetans, fled to India to escape the Communist Party of China. Burris relates that when Geshe was a child, his

mother, who was pregnant at the time, led him across the Himalayas on foot. Geshe himself recalls that he entered a Geluk monastery in India when he was “12 or 13.” Buddhism’s Geluk tradition is known for its strong academic style, based on largely on debate, and its preservation of sacred art, music and dance. The Drepung Loseling monastery in India where Geshe studied was an offshoot of a famous 500-year-old university in Lhasa, Tibet, that was famous throughout central Asia. It was destroyed, and many of its monks were killed, during the Communist invasion. In the 1990s, Geshe came to the U.S. as part of a group of monks hoping to introduce Americans to Tibetan culture by performing sacred music and creating sand mandalas at public venues. As a result of what they called the Mystical Arts of Tibet tours, the monks were invited to establish a seat in North America. Today, the Loseling Institute in Atlanta, Ga., is a non-profit organization dedicated to the study and preservation of the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. In 1998 Drepung Loseling forged academic ties with Emory University with the objective of promoting transcultural understanding and scholarly interchange. The Dalai Lama inaugurated this historic affiliation in 1998. Academic ties between Asia and the west were further strengthened when Geshe became part of the UA faculty. Like any serious academic, Geshe emphasizes the need to understand the subject he teaches — Tibetan culture — to its roots. “Buddhism come to the Western world is one thing,” he says. “But accuracy is the most important part.” • MAY 11, 2011 15

ever briefly, and explore what it means to practice. Drolma explains, “You can learn to watch your mind and recognize when you’re having a disturbing or negative emotion, and you can kind of step back, and you don’t have to react. You’re not always looking outside yourself. You’re looking at your own mind.”

‘Settle your mind’

Director The Department of Arkansas Heritage invites applications for the position of Director of the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center and Museum. The newly established museum is the Premiere African American museum in Central Arkansas. The Director will be responsible for planning and directing the overall operation of the museum; coordinating the primary fund raising pursuits for the museum programs; provide direction to other museum staff; work effectively and collaboratively with the museum’s various publics; coordinate activities with other agencies and museums within DAH; and perform various other administrative duties. The Director may be required to work other than normal office hours. Some in and out of state travel may also be required. The Director will possess a working knowledge of Arkansas History, particularly African American Arkansas History as well as knowledge of museum administration including standard museum and oral history practices outlined by the American Association of Museums and the Oral History Association, as well as the ability to work with community groups, other state agencies, legislators, etc. The director should have skills in editing as well as effective oral and written communication. Minimum qualifications: The formal education equivalent of a bachelor’s degree in public administration, business administration, or a related area; plus six years of experience in program development and administration, including three years in a supervisory or leadership capacity. Valid Arkansas Driver’s License and pre-employment criminal background check is required. Please apply online at OR send the required State of Arkansas application, resume and list of five references to: DAH Personnel, 323 Center St., 1500 Tower Building, Little Rock, AR 72201. Off list references may also be checked. All applications must be received by close of business June 3, 2011. EOE.

16 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

“You learn that you’re not a puppet of your mind, and so you don’t get caught up in the superficial. Developing a focused mind is a skill, and anyone can develop it. What makes the Dalai Lama so powerful is the focus of his mind. That’s what the awakened mind — the enlightened mind — is: the mind that’s completely settled in its own nature.” Buddhists see a metaphor in the rivers around them. Storms can stir the water. But, says Drolma, as with water, “the longer you can sit and settle your mind, the more it clears. Sediments settle to the bottom. The mind sinks into more and more profound states.” As Drolma puts it, when one’s mind is “not constantly being whipped about,” the resulting clarity permits the “beautiful qualities” of compassion, generosity and patience to emerge. Yeshe, the center’s other monk, is the son of New York Quakers. He entered college to become a naturalist, worked as an environmental educator, then returned to school to study Eastern medicine, which he practiced in Oregon. He says that from the moment he became involved in Tibetan Buddhism, he “felt called to the path of a monk.” Yeshe was part of the group of 70 or so that accompanied Rinpoche to Tibet in 2007. “It was great to be around those monks,” he says. It was there that he was ordained. Yeshe followed Rinpoche to Arkansas because “he is the only teacher who has laid out the whole path for me and given me a very clear explanation.” Yeshe finds it remarkable that, at exactly the time he came here, with the blessing of the land last October, the couple from Hawaii found and contributed the property that Rinpoche plans to make into a healing center. When that happens, he hopes to work there. To support himself now, though, he works full-time in Jasper at a facility for developmentally disabled people. He wears “lay clothes” to the job instead of his monk’s robes because he wants to “give people a chance to know me and trust me, and the robes would have created a barrier.” “Right now, I’m basically mainstreamed,” Yeshe explains. “Can you imagine if I worked in a bank and wore robes? It would be too strange for people. But I keep aspiring to a job where I can wear my robes.”

At work, Yeshe also goes by his premonk name, Ken Davidson. “I call it my Social Security name,” he says. “It’s for taxes and all my legal stuff. Right now, it’s also my work persona.” Yet Yeshe realizes that Jasper is a small town, and that anyone who didn’t already know he’s a monk is likely to after this article. “Everything has to move slowly,” he says. “I’m here to integrate with the people and culture. I’m not here to build a wall between me and the community.”


So there is assimilation all around. Via e-mail, I asked Rinpoche’s secretary and translator, Paloma Lopez Landry, to relay a few questions about that to him. What, for instance, has been the most difficult part of adapting to life in the U.S.? “Too many concepts about everything,” he responded via Landry. “This makes life overly complicated and takes a long time to do simple things.” And the easiest? “There are so many things. But if I have to choose one, it’s freedom.” (In parentheses, Landry wrote “human rights.”) Finally, I asked what, if anything, Rinpoche would like for the people of Newton County to understand about him. He replied: “I’m a lone Tibetan monk far from my homeland, monastery, family and friends. Since my arrival in Newton County, everyone who I have met I have felt has been welcoming, kind, friendly and helpful. I wish to thank everyone for this kindness.” On Wednesday, May 18, Khentrul Rinpoche will give a talk in Fayetteville. For the announcement, he wrote: “Consider how human desire turns into overwhelming greed, destroying in gradual stages the planet and our lives, in turn undoing the livelihood and sustenance of all future generations.” The question to be addressed, he says, is: “Within this infinite universe, how can we as humans abide without harming our small planet and ourselves?” A current of excitement runs through the mountains here, like the buzz from the saws in the colorful new barn temple. Jim Westbrook, the architect, almost expresses it. “I think I have the same feeling everyone here has,” he calmly says. “We can’t believe our good fortune. Rinpoche travels a lot, but he calls this place home.” Khentrul will teach a four-day retreat at Katog Katog Rit’hröd May 21-24, (Schedule and contact information at

CRYSTAL BRIDGES Continued from page 8

art’s portrait of George Washington (1797) and Asher Durand’s “Kindred Spirits” (1849), a “critical acquisition” made last week will greet visitors in the first building’s galleries, to feature work from the colonial period through the 19th. Crystal Bridges has developed an iPhone application that visitors can download for an aural tour, and will also have devices available at the desk for people to borrow. Early 20th century and modernist works will be exhibited in rooms within one of the bridges over Crystal Springs’ pools; the glass-walled, arched pine beam-roofed structure will offer a view to the north of a Mark di Suvero sculpture. Asked if this were where the Jackson Pollock would hang, Bacigalupi said no and gestured toward the next gallery, whose high ceilings and open space will accommodate the scale of late 20th century and contemporary work. Bacigalupi wasn’t being serious, or at least not obviously so, about whether the collection would include a Pollock. It does include, however, a number of contemporary works, which when the museum opens will be hung in the 8,000-square-foot space on the first floor of the library building, which will later be used for changing exhibits. Though the museum has revealed some of its collection in a steady drip since last year, most recently the stainless steel Roxy Paine sculpture “Yield” that sits at the entrance, Murphy and others said the secrecy will allow for greater excitement on opening day, which he said holds many surprises for the art world. It is known how many works will be on the walls when CBMAA opens: around 400, which Bacigalupi described as the “bulk of the collection.” The evening before the museum tour, the museum leadership invited the press to the James Turrell skyscape for a sunset light show. The skyscape, located at the head of a sculpture-lined trail that leads from Compton Gardens in the middle of town and along Crystal Springs creek to the south entrance of the museum, is a kiva-like stone structure with an opening, or oculus, at the top and bench seating around the inner edge. LED lights hidden behind and above the seating bounce color off the inner dome, which seems to change the color of the darkening night sky. Volcanic ash, raked Japanesegarden style every morning by the grounds crew, is the central flooring; stand there and your voice echoes loudly about the room. Curator Houston said the skyscape is meant to be experienced rather than described, and said it had a sort of ritualistic feel. When a reporter noted that when it opens July 1 to the public, that some rituals most certainly will be observed, Bacigalupi laughed and said that people have greeted the artist with babies on their hips conceived in a skyscape; Turrellians they’re called.

Find Us On Facebook • MAY 11, 2011 17


Editorial n The on-line political journal The Onion exposes the weakness of a potential presidential candidate: “Though Mitt Romney is considered to be a frontrunner for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, the national spotlight has forced him to repeatedly confront a major skeleton in his political closet: that as governor of Massachusetts he once tried to help poor, uninsured sick people. “Romney, who signed the state’s 2006 health care reform act, has said he ‘deeply regrets’ giving people in poor physical and mental health the opportunity to seek medical attention, admitting that helping very sick people get better remains a dark cloud hovering over his political career, and his biggest obstacle to becoming president of the United States of America.” Sounds like a RINO, all right. Real Republicans are reliably hostile to the poor, the sick, the uninsured and the female. Pity only encourages these people, according to the Republican National Committee; Real Republicans save their sympathy for corporations. Here is how a real Republican votes in Congress: To withhold federal funds for school-based preventive-care clinics that would provide the only health care available to many poor children. To use the U.S. tax laws against women who seek control of their own bodies. To assure private health-insurance companies of large profits, without competition, at the expense of consumers. To continue billions of dollars worth of tax breaks now given to the biggest oil companies. To require the U.S. government to let the oil companies do more offshore drilling of the sort that produced the Gulf of Mexico disaster. That, in case you didn’t recognize it, is exactly how Arkansas’s Republican congressmen voted in just the first week of this month. Afterward, they were probably giving high fives all around: No shirkers here! And it’s not as though Reps. Rick Crawford, Tim Griffin and Steve Womack hadn’t already shown their Grand Old Party mettle. They’d previously voted to end Medicare, privatize Social Security, make consumers pay higher prices for prescription drugs, and give more tax breaks to the very rich. They have their cold eyes on the public schools, notoriously soft on poor kids. When we saw in the paper this week that Crawford was “distressed and sickened,” we first thought he’d repented, had finally realized how contemptible was his behavior, would henceforth be a new and better man. But once again, we’d overestimated Rick Crawford; it’s almost impossible not to. What he was “sickened” by, it turns out, was not his own misdeeds but criticism of him that had been reported by a local newspaper. Today’s Republican has little use for the First Amendment either.

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Solid for meanness

POURING OUT: Recent storms have kept waterfalls across Arkansas flowing, like Cedar Falls in Petit Jean State Park in Morrilton. Don Dailey uploaded this photo to our Eye On Arkansas Flickr page.

The UA’s bumbling search n I talked with former U.S. Rep. Vic Snyder last week about his experience as an applicant for the presidency of the University of Arkansas system. Snyder, now working for Arkansas Blue Cross, says he has no hard feelings about being bypassed, but criticism for the process. The secretive process lasted from fall through late March. A hired executive search consultant and UA Board Chairman John Ed Anthony tried to find a successor to B. Alan Sugg. Anthony talked one by one with other trustees. I and others, but not the UA legal counsel, think this was an illegal way around the state sunshine law. Ultimately, Anthony’s term on the board ended without a candidate, despite some nibbles. A new board chair, Dr. Carl Johnson, embarked on a more open search. And what of Snyder’s experience? In November, at the urging of Trustee David Pryor, Snyder indicated his interest. He met with Anthony in Malvern. He met in Dallas with consultant Bill Funk. Snyder was told he was “eminently qualified” and was one of two finalists. But, in January, Snyder got a call from consultant Funk. He was told that after Anthony held a series of one-on-one meetings at the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans with eight of the 10 trustees, “there was a vote of 8-0 that they were going to go a different direction.” Funk used the phrase 8-0 several times, Snyder said. (Funk did not return my call.) Snyder said Anthony also reiterated later that, by an 8-0 vote, the board had decided to go another direction. An 8-0 vote? There’s no way to have a legal 8-0 vote except in public. Snyder let Anthony know of his misgivings. “I said you know there’s something wrong with a process when I’m told by a hired gun running the search that it’s down to me and one other person. ... And then I’m told by a vote of 8-0 they are not interested at all. The process has got to treat people better than that.” That’s not all. Two weeks later, Funk called Snyder

Max Brantley

again. He asked if Snyder might be interested after all. No. “I think that was peculiar,” Snyder said. Anthony insists he didn’t tell Snyder there’d been an 8-0 vote. “There was never any vote,” Anthony said. But he said there was agreement that everyone on the board wanted to “look at all options.” He said it was possible, however, Funk had indicated to Snyder he wouldn’t be chosen. Snyder said he’d emphasized to UA reps that he had no objection to release of his name. “We need to set a tone at the highest level of leadership that the Freedom of Information Act is important. It is not good enough to just technically meet the standard. Or to say private money was used.” He said the process was insulting to people who sent unsolicited applications that were publicly disclosed. “It’s almost like if you apply, you’re not a serious candidate. That sets a bad precedent for public jobs in Arkansas.” Anthony clearly doubts an open, competitive process can produce the best candidates for system president, though he thinks it could work for, say, a chancellor. Dr. Johnson, the new board chairman, says the job is good enough that someone should be proud to apply. But, at this moment, the UA board still lacks a candidate — except as embodied by the Farm Bureau campaign for its former leader Stanley Read. Reed has modestly conceded he’d accept the job (which he’s been trying to capture for months with inside politicking). If Reed is the only man standing, that might be good enough. But not much of a process.


2014, here we come n With the exception of 2006, every governor’s race in Arkansas since 1978 has included a sitting governor. The illness of Lt. Gov. Win Rockefeller, the winds blowing in the Democrats’ direction, and the unswerving campaign by strong favorite Mike Beebe kept drama to a minimum in 2006. Last week, former state Rep. Bobby Tullis said he wants to lead an effort to change the state Constitution to allow Beebe to run for a third term. Despite the popularity of Beebe, the gadfly Tullis’ efforts will get no traction, giving 2014 the ingredients for a political battle royale. When political junkies began salivating about 2014 about half a decade ago, the Arkansas Republican party was in dire straits and it was assumed that a multicandidate Democratic primary would be the center of the action. The sudden revitalization of the GOP in Arkansas means that both parties will now face wide-open primaries and that the winners of those races will head towards a sharply competitive general election. In short, we should be looking at 18 months of nonstop political action in pursuit of a job that pays relatively little but brings with it enormous informal power. If he wants it, Congressman Steve Womack is a clear favorite to win the Republican nomination, because the bulk of

Jay Barth GOP primary votes come from his district. However, a U.S. Senate race for the seat held by Mark Pryor or the opportunity to build cachet within the House Republican majority may encourage the former Rogers mayor to stay in Washington. If Womack chooses not to run for governor, an array of Republican statewide elected officials and term-limited legislators would likely seek the office. The party would ultimately be best served to look outside of Northwest Arkansas for a nominee who can combine the sure Republican votes of that region with reach to other portions of the state. No matter the Republican nominee, the fall race will be a deeply competitive one as the GOP sets realistic sights on gaining the governorship in 2014, which in turn might signal that the party is well on its way to ongoing partisan dominance in Arkansas. But, whom will the Democrats nominate? Two candidates—Attorney General Dustin McDaniel and U.S. Rep. Mike

Huckabee might run to stay on TV n As a Fox News television talent alone, Mike Huckabee is not as compelling as Sean Hannity or as commanding as Bill O’Reilly or even as good-looking as Greta van Susteren.   Huckabee’s unique currency as a media/show biz personality is that, as viable presidential contenders go, he plays pretty good bass guitar and can deliver a glib quip.   I wouldn’t think that Mitt Romney could do nearly as well as a member of a Fox News house cover band playing Lynyrd Skynyrd. I wouldn’t think that Tim Pawlenty could do nearly as well delivering an in-studio monologue for a Saturday night TV show that only a niche audience watches.   So here is the uncommonly ironic predicament in which Huckabee finds himself: He has fashioned a generous media/show biz income from this peculiar brand he has made of himself as the glibbest guitar-playing viable presidential contender in America. He has mortgaged this curve-graded stardom to the

John Brummett

I wouldn’t think that Mitt Romney could do nearly as well as a member of a Fox News house cover band playing Lynyrd Skynyrd. hilt for a Redneck Riviera mansion and other trappings to which he has always been uncommonly drawn. But now he faces the prospect of maybe having to run again for president — and give up the media stardom for that duration — in order to re-up his brand for continued media/show biz viability. That is to say he might need to run for president, though not, of course, actually

Ross, the six-term congressman from south (and now part of northwest) Arkansas—are gearing up for the race. The attorney general is clearly in the strongest spot at this point. As shown by McDaniel’s runoff victory for attorney general over Paul Suskie in 2006, Bill Halter’s victory over Tim Wooldridge in that year, and the wins by Chad Causey and Joyce Elliott in congressional runoffs last year, the candidate perceived as most progressive now almost always wins Democratic primaries in Arkansas. Moving forward, the progressive advantage in such races will become only greater as the primary electorate shrinks and continues to skew to the left. Having voted against much of President Obama’s agenda and having cast a series of anti-choice and anti-gay rights votes, Congressman Ross is clearly the conservative in a two-person race against McDaniel. While separating himself from Obama might well work in a general election electorate, the president remains quite popular with Arkansas Democrats. Moreover, in his statewide race against Suskie, McDaniel showed his skill in making an opponent’s conservatism on social issues an albatross. Although other names have been mentioned, the possible candidacy of a suddenly invisible Bill Halter could create a banana peel for McDaniel. With the lottery still popular with Arkansans, and especially popular with the state’s Democratic-leaning African-American voters,

Halter could squeeze McDaniel from the left. McDaniel’s popularity with party activists would likely allow him to edge out the former lieutenant governor for a runoff spot, but Halter would complicate the race enormously for McDaniel. If he were to make it into the runoff against Ross, Halter would have the same progressive advantage that allowed him to pummel Wooldridge in 2006. Rumors swirled that Ross would switch parties after the GOP gained control of the House and begin building his bona fides as a Republican. However, that window has closed and, despite his tremendous fundraising ability, it is hard to see a former Democrat winning a starkly conservative Republican primary. Thus, the congressman is in a difficult spot in an increasingly polarized Arkansas two-party system. No one has suggested it, but might an independent bid by Ross that allows him to contrast himself on social issues from the Democrats and on economic issues from the Republicans be his best path to the governorship? Such an ideological combination would work particularly well in the predominantly white rural counties where state elections are still won. Now, a competitive three-way general election race for governor would really make 2014 one for the ages.

to be president. That’s no fun. What happens to Huckabee’s longterm TV career — and the sidelights of radio commentary, high-dollar speechmaking and Christian sea cruise hosting — if he does not run again for president, thus losing his meal ticket as the quipping guitarist who actually is an outside threat to inhabit the White House?   He’d have to make it on Fox on Saturday nights by guitar playing and quips alone. But there are better guitar players and funnier comedians.  What will happen to that long-term TV career if Huckabee parlays quips and name identification into the Republican presidential nomination against this comically weak field? What happens if he looks up one day to find, to his certain horror, that he must actually bear the standard of Obama-hating Americans and stop rehearsing for show biz and start pondering the presidency seriously?   Most likely, one could not serve at once as the Republican president of the United States and as the host of a Saturday night talk show on Fox, although this time-honored separation of roles and responsibilities is no longer as clear and certain as it once was.  I remain on record predicting that Huckabee, in the end, will opt not to run

for president.   That’s because his ultimate calculation will be that his over-arching career goal, that of ongoing media/show biz personality, can best be pursued by sticking with that career as it exists, even without renewal of the political brand, rather than by risking having to take off four whole years, which would be all the American people could possibly survive, to function as best he might as president of the United States.   He does not want to be president. He did not even want to be governor. He wants to gab; he wants to get paid by the word; he wants his own microphone and camera; he wants an adapted FalwellRobertson kind of appeal; he wants to put out pamphlets and call them books; he wants stuff.   Might I be wrong in my prediction? Might he run?     His challenge will be finding someone in this Republican field to whom he can be certain of running second.   The best bet seems to be Romney, who, as it happens, is the one rival Huckabee cannot stand. That serves only to compound the ironic predicament.

Jay Barth is a professor of politics at Hendrix College. Ernest Dumas is on vacation.

John Brummett is a columnist and reporter for Stephens Media’s Arkansas News Bureau. • MAY 11, 2011 19

arts entertainment

This week in


Alejandro Escovedo to Juanita’s

Sir Threadius Mongus plays The Afterthought









‘Marilyn’ launches the inaugural season at Arkansas TheatreWorks. BY BRANDON WEST


ast Friday night’s audience for “Marilyn: Forever Blonde” — the inaugural show of Arkansas TheatreWorks Inc. — was a quintessential cross-section of Hot Springs. It was a crowd made up mostly of well-dressed retirees and gallery types, seasoned with a handful of Oaklawn oddballs and a few folks who didn’t give a second thought to slowly, loudly unwrapping a cough drop during a particularly quiet part of the show. The venue, too, has a classic Spa City feel. The recently renovated Central Theater, at 1008 Central Ave., has a touch of historic preservation about it, but it’s much more informal coziness than stately opulence. Managing director Sheldon Kleinman and artistic director Jerry Davis had been working on starting a professional theater company for some time, but had trouble finding the right venue. Kleinman and Davis each have decades of experience. Davis has written and directed productions in Arkansas, Oklahoma and Texas, and Kleinman graduated from the Goodman School of Drama in Chicago and was managing director of the Goodman Theatre, the Yale Repertory Theatre and the California Actors Theatre. After an initial agreement with the Malco Theater fell through, the pair considered the Central Theater just down the 20 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

street. The venue hadn’t hosted a professional performance in more than a decade, and the owner at that time — who was also living in the building — wasn’t interested in renting it. But when they got word last fall that the building had been sold, they contacted the new owner, Bill Volland, who was very receptive to the idea of leasing the space to Arkansas TheatreWorks, Kleinman said. Some renovations were necessary to ready the space for performances. “There was no theatrical lighting system and the stage that the previous owner had put in was very small with a very low ceiling. It was impossible to light,” Kleinman said. “So we put in a new stage. We also had to install an appropriate lighting grid and arrange to be able to have a complete, upto-date theatrical lighting system,” he said. “In building out the stage, it was necessary to move seats so there would be room. But none of that changed the actual seating capacity. We moved the seats around and we still have a 282-seat auditorium.” While the upgrades certainly improved the situation, Arkansas TheatreWorks will still have some limitations in the types of shows it can produce. “There’s no fly space, so we are limited, really, to the kind of set that we can put up. It doesn’t necessarily have to be Continued on page 26

NORMA JEAN: Sunny Thompson stars as Marilyn Monroe in ‘Marilyn’.

■ to-dolist BY JOHN TARPLEY

T H U R S D AY 5 /1 2

ALEJANDRO ESCOVEDO 9 p.m., Juanita’s. $16 adv., $20 d.o.s.

n Unless Neil Young or Patti Smith makes an unlikely trip back to town or Warren Zevon or Townes Van Zandt reanimates and zombies up to a local mic, Little Rock isn’t likely to see a show from a greater Great all year. “Wait: if this guy’s so ‘Great,’ then why isn’t he famous?” For decades, the Alejandro Escovedo story has been that his talent has far outweighed his renown and his deserved mainstream success has been elusive, inexplicably. His consolation prizes aren’t awful, however: “Artist of the Decade” by alt-country magazine No Depression, a demi-god in his native Austin and nearly unanimously adored by critics, musicians and others in the peanut gallery from collaborator Bruce Springsteen to fellow Texan George W. Bush, who kept Escovedo in his iPod during his presidency. In short, if you know Escovedo, you probably love him as much as I do and you’ll be there. If not, and you’re open to a new favorite singer, clear out your Thursday night plans.


6 p.m., Wildwood Park for the Arts. $20.

BESPOKE PUNK: Find out why so many people consider Alejandro Escovedo a rock and roll genius this Thursday night at Juanita’s.

n KUAR celebrates Arkansas Heritage Month and the 115th anniversary of the Civil War during this year’s installment of “Arkansas Flyer,” the annual, twangtinged music revue/comedy show/storytime hour/big ol’ barbecue. The night, emceed once again by Amy Garland, the local songcraft and host of “Backroads,” the terrific radio hour (KABF, Friday nights, 5 p.m.), features country swingers extraordinaire The Salty Dogs as house band, Fayetteville folk duo Still on the Hill’s banjo and violin Ozarkia, Arkansas State University professor Gwendolyn Twillie spinning Civil War yarns and the return of the Invisible Radio Theater, performing old-time radio sketch comedy. The night kicks off at 6 p.m. with a barbecue dinner catered by Capitol Smokehouse.

MALCOLM HOLCOMBE 10 p.m., White Water Tavern. $7

AMERICANA: A perennial favorite around town, the acclaimed Malcolm Holcombe returns to White Water Tavern for a night of moody folk. 22 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

n “He’s the best singer/songwriter I ever threw out of my studio.” Steve Earle, quote factory he is, spit that one out about Malcolm Holcombe, the rough and tumble Appalachian folk singer. His grumbled, minor-key confessionals command a resounding reverence and stir up more than a few welled eyes. During his last visit to

■ inbrief

White Water Tavern, the crowd sprawled out on the floor, unable, I like to think, to stand up and take it all in. Holcombe’s rustic, primal finger-picking is astonishing enough; pair it with the manner in which he sings, eyes rolled into the back of his head, convulsing as he channels a certain ancient rumble and, yeah, it can sometimes be too much to take in all at once. But why the hell does he have to play the same time as Alejandro Escovedo? Looks like it’s going to be coin flip time this Thursday.


FRI D AY 5/ 13


8 p.m., The Arlington Hotel, Hot Springs. $50.

n The songwriter whose collaborations with John Prine, Guy Clark, Rodney Crowell and Jimmy Buffett is the namesake of what’s starting to look like an annual Hot Springs tradition. The Keith Sykes Weekend lands yearly in the Arlington Hotel for two days of songwriting shop-talk, Bloody Marys and gigging. This year’s bullpen includes Roger Cook, whose songs have been performed by Elton John and Neil Diamond, amongst others, and who made what we estimate to be a bajillion dollars when he wrote “I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing” for CocaCola; Buzz Cason, the Nashville songwriter whose track, “Soldier of Love,” was famously covered by The Beatles on the “Live at the BBC” album; Jed Zimmerman, a young Memphian and Sykes protege; Grace Askew, a young folksoulstress making waves in that world; Delta Joe Sanders, another mud-soaked Memphian, and rootsy Little Rock lady Shannon Boshears. Tickets are available at


9:30 p.m., Revolution. $19 adv., $25.

n Keller Williams is something of a jamband circuit all-star, an acoustic guitar M.V.P. Also, the man is a beast. I’ve spent nine years with his unfairly overlooked album “Laugh” and, in particular, his signature song, “Freaker By the Speaker,” and still for the life of me can’t comprehend how this goofy, babyfaced bro next door lures this certain lick out of his guitar with such clarity and precision. Live, however, he’s known for his bag of tricks. A oneman jam band, Williams employs a spread of loop pedals plugged into mounted guitars, basses and mics, creating on-the-spot jams. Even people averse to the jam scene can’t help but be wowed by the spectacle. Just check out the YouTube comments sections for the man: “I could listen to him all day, even when I’m not stoned. But I’m always stoned, so it’s super amazing.” Thanks, bonghitter38.

MONGUS AMONG US: The Tulsa, Okla.,sextet Sir Threadius Mongus brings its imaginative, left-field jazz sounds to The Afterthought this Friday night.


9 p.m., The Afterthought. $7.

n This Tulsa, Okla., jazz group was slated to play The Afterthought this February, but, when a couple of members couldn’t make the trip at the last minute, the night turned into a three-man session. Fine, no doubt, but a minor bummer nevertheless. Sir Threadius Mongus’ 2006 album, “This is Sir Threadius Mongus,” is a stellar document of the left-field six-piece and one that’s caught on with a number of people around town. (Read: my friends that I’ve shoved it upon, pretty much threateningly.) Imagine Lena Horne and Captain Beefheart running into each other in a backwoods cabin jam session. Spectacularly, such a proposition manages to come off as totally accessible and not particularly an endeavor in difficult listening. This make-up gig is months in the making, not to mention one you won’t catch us missing.

SMOKING POPES 9 p.m., Stickyz. $10.

n This Chicago, Ill., act is, without a doubt, about the closest thing you can get to pop-punk godfathers. For the few uninitiated (or the flat-out young), the Smoking Popes spent the mid-’90s making a name for themselves by trading in punk snarl for crooning vocals that float somewhere between Mel Torme and Morrissey. Shockingly, it worked well. Really well. The band’s breakthrough single, “Need You Around,” was omnipresent in the decade before last (wrap your Jennifer Aniston haircut around that one) and still stands up years later. Since the Popes’ heyday, they’ve kept releasing music at a steady tack, including their latest, “This is Only a Test,” a well-received concept album which landed in stores last month. Another act that aims to tie punk attitude to the golden oldie aesthetic, Girl in a Coma, returns to Little Rock to open the night.


JEWISH FOOD FESTIVAL 10 a.m., River Market Pavilions. Free.

n The annual day-long festival of Jewish food, music and art returns to the River Market. We’re ready to dig in. Even the names are fun to say: rugelach (a strudel), hamantaschen (that’s a cookie), schnecken (a sort of cinnamon roll). Try to forget how common the food is and re-embrace the joys of pronouncing pastrami. A dish that’s easy to say and delicious, to boot: the stuffed sweet and sour cabbage rolls. Also, expect a day’s worth of music from Jana Cohen and the Shechinotes, Cantor John Caplan, Shelly Amizur and the Dance Troupe, Jerry Jacobson, Meshugga Klezmer Band, Temple B’nai Israel Stars of David Band, B-Flat Minor and Memphis’ Temple Israel Ruach Band.



10 p.m., White Water Tavern. $5.

n Reforming after a five-year breakup, Slobberbone launched a reunion tour that sold out a two-night stand at White Water Tavern last December. Crazier, however, is the fact that the weekend brought in people from 16 different states. Formed in 1992, the Texan cowpunkers churned out four cult albums, including “Everything You Thought Was Right Was Wrong Today,” a literate, guitar and horns-driven album that’s an alt-country classic by anyone’s standards. The band also has the great and random-as-hell distinction of making one of the “three greatest rock and roll songs ever” according to Stephen King. Slobberbone is, no doubt, a band that sounds better with a belly full of beer, so expect a lot of people to call in sick the following day.

n Dunbar Community Garden’s afternoon “Music in the Garden” series returns with Bonnie Montgomery and actor/soul crooner Rychy St. Vincent, 5:30 p.m., free. Rockers Almost Famous play Markham Street Grill and Pub, 9 p.m. At Cajun’s Wharf, Crash Meadows handles the happy hour deck, 5 p.m., before local songwriter Shannon McClung takes the stage at 9 p.m., $5 after 8:30 p.m. Literate NOLA singer Kate Campbell brings her celebrated Americana to Laman Library for a free show, 7 p.m. Sway’s weekly “V.I.P. Thursday” party has DJs SilkySlim and Derrty Deja Blu in the booth starting at 8 p.m. And at Dickey-Stephens Park, the Travs kick off their three-game series against the Tulsa Drillers, 7:10 p.m., $6-$12.


n Flying Saucer celebrates its 13th anniversary with beer specials, special beers and music from Embrace the Crash, 9 p.m. Matt Joyce brings his Elvis tribute act to Denton’s Trotline, 9 p.m. In Mountain View, the Ozark Folk Center State Park hosts its annual Thumbpicking Weekend. For the night owls, Musicians Showcase winners and the best music duo in the state (at the very least), Tyrannosaurus Chicken brings its “psychedelta” sounds to Midtown Billiards, midnight, $8 non-members. “Good Boys and True” continues its run at the Weekend Theater, 7:30 p.m. And, in Hot Springs, Maxine’s hosts a night of rawk from Vail, The Valentine Failures and Playing with Karma, 8 p.m., $7.


n The annual Buzz-B-Q offers up over 90 local barbecue teams competing for $5,000 in cash and prizes, as well as a day’s worth of music from Josh Green, Moses Tucker Band, Jeff Coleman and the Feeders, Taylor Made and more at the North Little Rock RV Park, $10. Triniti Nightclub hosts “Naturally Naughty Burlesque,” starring the local Diamond Dames troupe, 9 p.m., $10. Oklahoma pop-rocker Ben Rector comes to the Central Arkansas Christian School for an evening gig, 7 p.m., $10 adv., $15 d.o.s. Acoustic duo Ben and Doug land in the Flying Saucer, 9 p.m., $3. One of the best named bands around, Stark Naked and the Car Thieves, plays Fox and Hound and, it’s hoped, will be selling T-shirts, 10 p.m., $5. Khalil’s on Shackleford hosts a karaoke night starting at 7 p.m. Down the street, West End Smokehouse and Grill brings Max Taylor to the stage, 10 p.m., $5. Stickyz offers up an eightpiece NOLA funk and brass from the “Treme”-featured Soul Rebels Brass Band, 9 p.m., $10. • MAY 11, 2011 23



All events are in the Greater Little Rock area unless otherwise noted. To place an event in the Arkansas Times calendar, please e-mail the listing and all pertinent information, including date, time, location, price and contact information, to


Acoustic Open Mic with Kat Hood. The Afterthought, 8 p.m. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-6631196. Bolly Open Mic Hype Night with Osyrus Bolly and DJ Messiah. All American Wings, 9 p.m. 215 W. Capitol Ave. 501-376-4000. Celtic Woman. Robinson Center Music Hall, 7:30 p.m., $35-$150. Markham and Broadway. www. Jim Dickerson. Sonny Williams’ Steak Room, 7 p.m. 500 President Clinton Ave. 501-324-2999. www. Karaoke at Khalil’s. Khalil’s Pub, 7 p.m. 110 S. Shackleford Road. 501-224-0224. www.khalilspub. com. Karaoke. Hibernia Irish Tavern, 9 p.m. 9700 N Rodney Parham Road. 501-246-4340. Karaoke with Big John Miller. Denton’s Trotline, 8 p.m. 2150 Congo Road, Benton. 501-315-1717. Mayday by Midnight. Cajun’s Wharf, 5 p.m., $5 after 8:30 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-375-5351. www. “The Nature of Strings: The Kiev Trio at Thorncrown Chapel.” Iryna Krechkovsky (violin), Natalia Khoma (cello) and Volodymyr Vynnytsky (piano). Thorncrown Chapel, 6 p.m. 12968 Hwy. 62 West, Eureka Springs. Ted Ludwig Trio. Capital Bar and Grill, 5 p.m., free. 111 Markham St. 501-374-7474. www.capitalhotel. com/CBG. Terror, Trapped Under Ice, Sticky to Your Guns, Close Your Eyes, Your Demise. Downtown Music Hall, 6 p.m., $15. 211 W. Capitol. 501-376-1819.



John Evans. The Loony Bin, through May 12, 8 p.m.; May 13, 8 and 10:30 p.m.; May 14, 7, 9 and 11 p.m., $6-$9. 10301 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-2285555.


NIGHT MUSIC: Smooth jazz saxophonist David Sanborn (pictured) joins local vocalist Genine L. Perez for “An Intimate Evening of Jazz,” a benefit for SDP Preservation of Jazz and Folk Music and the Arkansas Black Stallion Literacy Project, at the State House Convention Center this Sunday, May 15, at 7 p.m.

John Evans. The Loony Bin, 8 p.m.; May 13, 8 and 10:30 p.m.; May 14, 7, 9 and 11 p.m., $6-$9. 10301 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-228-5555.


Argenta Downtown Council Annual Luncheon. Featured speaker Mayor Joseph P. Riley Jr. of Charleston, S.C. For more information, call 993-1234 or visit Wyndham Riverfront Hotel, 11:30 a.m., $100. 2 Riverfront Place, NLR. 501-3719000. Arkansas Public Health Association Dance and Talent Show. Hot Springs Convention Center, 8 p.m. 134 Convention Blvd., Hot Springs. 501-321-2027.


Marc Freedman. The CEO and founder of Civic Ventures will discuss his new book, “The Big Shift: Navigating the New Stage Beyond Midlife.” To reserve seats, call 683-5239 or e-mail Clinton School of Public Service, 12 p.m. 1200 President Clinton Ave. 501-683-5239. 24 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES


Alejandro Escovedo. Juanita’s, 9 p.m., $16 adv., $20 d.o.s. 1300 S. Main St. 501-372-1228. www. Almost Famous. Markham Street Grill and Pub, 9 p.m. 11321 W. Markham St. 501-224-2010. www. Bonnie Montgomery and Rychy St. Vincent. Part of the “Music in the Garden” series. Dunbar Community Garden, 5:30 p.m., $5. 1800 S. Chester. Crash Meadows (headliner), Shannon McClunng (happy hour). Cajun’s Wharf, 5 and 9 p.m., $5 after 8:30 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-3755351. Denny Santon. Faulkner County Library, 7 p.m., free. 1900 Tyler St., Conway. 501-327-7482. “V.I.P. Thursdays” with DJs SilkySlim and Derrty Deja Blu. Sway, 8 p.m., $3. 412 Louisiana. 501-907-2582. Fire & Brimstone. The Afterthought, 8 p.m., $5. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196. www.afterthoughtbar. com. “Hip-Hop Night.” Vino’s, Every other Thursday, 8 p.m., $5. 923 W. Seventh St. 501-375-8466. www. Jim Dickerson. Sonny Williams’ Steak Room, 7 p.m. 500 President Clinton Ave. 501-324-2999. www. John Michael Vance. Thirst n’ Howl, 10 p.m. 14710 Cantrell Road. 501-379-8189. Jonathan Tyler and the Northern Lights. Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack, 9 p.m., $10. 107 Commerce St. 501-372-7707. Karaoke. Zack’s Place, 8 p.m. 1400 S. University Ave. 501-664-6444. Kate Campbell. Laman Library, 7 p.m., free. 2801 Orange St., NLR. 501-758-1720. www.lamanlibrary. org. Malcolm Holcombe. White Water Tavern, 10 p.m. 2500 W. 7th. 501-375-8400. www.whitewatertavern. com. Ol’ Puddin’haid. Thirst n’ Howl, 7:30 p.m., free. 14710 Cantrell Road. 501-379-8189. Ted Ludwig Trio. Capital Bar and Grill, 5 p.m., free. 111 Markham St. 501-374-7474. www.capitalhotel. com/CBG.

Join Us May 24 For The Musical Comedy “Always Patsy Cline”! “Sweet Dreams Again”-USA Today May 24 – June 26

The story of legendary country singer Patsy Cline’s friendship with fan Louise Seger, inspired by letters signed “Love always... Patsy Cline.”

“Arkansas Flyer.” With music from The Salty Dogs and Still on the Hill, stories from Gwendolyn Twillie, comedy from the Invisible Radio Theater. Emceed by Amy Garland. For more information, call 569-8492 or visit Wildwood Park for the Performing Arts, 6 p.m., $20. 20919 Denny Road. Arkansas Hospice Honors Michael V. Aureli. The fourth annual event honors the President and CEO of Arkansas Hospice. For more information, call 748-3304 or visit The Peabody Little Rock, 6 p.m., $125. 3 Statehouse Plaza. 501-9064000. “Red Hot Party.” Fundraiser for the American Red Cross with live music from Memphis Soul Revue and Tragikly White. For tickets, visit ArkansasRedCross. org. Clear Channel Metroplex, 6:45 p.m., $50. 10800 Col. Glenn Road. 501-217-5113. “Searching Congress’ Scrapbooks For Your Ancestors.” Organized by the Central Arkansas Genealogical and Historical Society. Arkansas Studies Institute, 6 p.m., free. 401 President Clinton Ave. 501-320-5792.


Arkansas Travelers vs. Tulsa Drillers. DickeyStephens Park, May 12-14, 7:10 p.m.; May 15, 2 p.m., $6-$12. 400 W Broadway St., NLR. 501-664-1555.


Colonel Glenn & University • • 562-3131

Andrew Kelley. Cregeen’s Irish Pub, 9 p.m., free. 301 Main St., NLR. 501-376-7468. Big Smith. Following the Travs game. Dickey-

UPCOMING EVENTS Concert tickets through Ticketmaster by phone at 975-7575 or online at unless otherwise noted. MAY 18: Foo Fighters, Motorhead. 7 p.m., $25-$49.50. Verizon Arena. 975-9000, MAY 25: Wanda Jackson. 8 p.m., $15 adv., $20 d.o.s. Revolution, 300 President Clinton Ave. 823-0090, MAY 24-26: “Beauty and the Beast.” 7:30 p.m. Robinson Center Music Hall, Markham and Broadway. 244-8800, MAY 27-29: Riverfest 2011. Downtown Little Rock. JUNE 6: The Swingin’ Utters. 10 p.m. White Water Tavern, 3500 W. 7th St. 375-8400, JUNE 7: The Sword. 9 p.m., $14 adv., $16 d.o.s. Juanita’s, 1300 S. Main St. 374-3271, JUNE 22: Lucero. 8 p.m., $15 adv., $17 d.o.s Maxine’s, 700 Central Ave., Hot Springs. 501-321-0909, JULY 20: CJ Ramone. 8 p.m., $15 adv., $20 d.o.s. Downtown Muisc Hall, 211 W. Capitol. 376-1819. OCT. 4: Taylor Swift. 7 p.m., $27-$71. Verizon Arena. 975-9000, Stephens Park. 400 W Broadway St., NLR. 501-6641555. Carrie Davis Band. Fox and Hound, 10 p.m., $5. 2800 Lakewood Village, NLR. 501-753-8300. www. Diane Meredith Belcher, organist. First Presbyterian Church, 8 p.m. 800 Scott St. Donna Massey and Blue-Eyed Soul (headliner), Funky Motif (happy hour). Cajun’s Wharf, 5 and 9 p.m., $5 after 8:30 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-375-5351. Embrace the Crash. The 13th anniversary party. Flying Saucer, 9 p.m. 323 President Clinton Ave. 501-372-7468. The Gettys. West End Smokehouse and Tavern, 10 p.m. 215 N. Shackleford. 501-224-7665. www. John Calvin Brewer Band. Oaklawn, May 13-14, 8 p.m.; May 27-28, 8 p.m. 2705 Central Ave., Hot Springs. 501-623-4411. Keith Sykes Weekend. A two-night showcase of singer/songwriters, including Roger Cook, Buzz Cason, Jed Zimmerman, Grace Askew, Delta Joe Sanders, Shannon Boshears and Keith Sykes himself. For tickets or more information, visit Arlington Hotel, May 13-14, $50. 239 Central Ave., Hot Springs. 501-623-7771. Keller Williams. Revolution, 9 p.m., $19 adv., $25 d.o.s. 300 President Clinton Ave. 501-823-0090. Matt Joyce (as Elvis). Denton’s Trotline, 9 p.m. 2150 Congo Road, Benton. 501-315-1717. RiverTop Party. With live music from TaylorMade. Emceed by Epiphany. More information at The Peabody Little Rock, 8 p.m. 3 Statehouse Plaza. 501-906-4000. Sir Threadius Mongus. The Afterthought, 9 p.m., $7. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196. Smoking Popes, Girl in a Coma. Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack, 9 p.m., $10. 107 Commerce St. 501-372-7707. Ted Ludwig Trio. Capital Bar and Grill, 9 p.m. 111 Markham St. 501-374-7474. CBG. Thomas East. Sonny Williams’ Steak Room, May 13-14, 7 p.m. 500 President Clinton Ave. 501-3242999. Thread. Thirst n’ Howl, 9 p.m. 14710 Cantrell Road. 501-379-8189. Thumbpicking Weekend. Ozark Folk Center State Park, May 13-14. 1032 Park Ave., Mountain View. Trustees. Markham Street Grill and Pub, 9 p.m. 11321 W. Markham St. 501-224-2010. www. Tyrannosaurus Chicken. Midtown Billiards, May 14, 12:30 a.m., $8 non-members. 1316 Main St. 501-372-9990.

Vail, The Valentine Failures, Playing With Karma. Maxine’s, 8 p.m., $7. 700 Central Ave., Hot Springs.


John Evans. The Loony Bin, May 13, 8 and 10:30 p.m.; May 14, 7, 9 and 11 p.m., $6-$9. 10301 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-228-5555.


LGBTQ/SGL Youth and Young Adult Group. Diverse Youth for Social Change is a group for LGBTQ/ SGL and straight ally youth and young adults age 14 to 23. For more information, call 244-9690 or search “DYSC” on Facebook. 6:30 p.m. 800 Scott St.


Peggy Cornett. The renowned gardener and editor of “Magnolia” speaks about her work on the grounds of Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello. To reserve seats, call 683-5239 or visit publicprograms@clintonschool. Clinton School of Public Service, 12 p.m. 1200 President Clinton Ave. 501-683-5239. www.


Ben & Doug. Flying Saucer, 9 p.m. 323 President Clinton Ave. 501-372-7468. stores/littlerock. Ben Rector. Central Arkansas Christian School, 7 p.m., $10 adv., $15 d.o.s. 1 Windsong Dr., NLR. Brian Nahlen. Markham Street Grill and Pub, 9 p.m. 11321 W. Markham St. 501-224-2010. www. Cory’s Band. Cregeen’s Irish Pub, 9 p.m. 301 Main St., NLR. 501-376-7468. David Starr Band. The Afterthought, 9 p.m., $7. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196. Dirtyfinger, Unmasked, Saints of Salem, Amsterdam, Moment of Fierce, Wave Drop. Downtown Music Hall, 7 p.m., $10 adv., $12 d.o.s. 211 W. Capitol. 501-376-1819. downtownshows. The Fall Down Drunks, Josh the Devil & the Sinners. Maxine’s, 8 p.m., $5. 700 Central Ave., Hot Springs. The Freds. The Underground, 9 p.m. 500 President Clinton Ave. 501-375-2537. Hi-Balls. Town Pump, 10 p.m. 1321 Rebsamen Park Road. 501-663-9802. “Inferno” with DJs SilkySlim, Deja Blu, Greyhound. Sway, 10 p.m. 412 Louisiana. 501-9072582. John Calvin Brewer Band. Oaklawn, through May 14, 8 p.m.; May 27-28, 8 p.m. 2705 Central Ave., Hot Springs. 501-623-4411. Karaoke at Khalil’s. Khalil’s Pub, 7 p.m. 110 S. Shackleford Road. 501-224-0224. www.khalilspub. com. Keith Sykes Weekend. See May 13. Max Taylor. West End Smokehouse and Tavern, 10 p.m. 215 N. Shackleford. 501-224-7665. Mother Hubbard. Cornerstone Pub & Grill, 9 p.m. 314 Main St., NLR. 501-374-1782. Penguin Dilemma. Denton’s Trotline, 9 p.m. 2150 Congo Road, Benton. 501-315-1717. Revis, Free State. Juanita’s, 10 p.m., $5. 1300 S. Main St. 501-372-1228. Rocket Coma, Burning Waco, Blackberry Wednesday. Vino’s, 9 p.m., $8. 923 W. Seventh St. 501-375-8466. Scott Holt (headliner), Andy Tanas (happy hour). Cajun’s Wharf, 5 and 9 p.m., $5 after 8:30 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-375-5351. www.cajunswharf. com. Soul Rebel Brass Band. Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack, 9 p.m., $10. 107 Commerce St. 501-372-7707. Stark Naked & The Car Thieves. Fox and Hound, 10 p.m., $5. 2800 Lakewood Village, NLR. 501-7538300. Ted Ludwig Trio. Capital Bar and Grill, 9 p.m. 111 Markham St. 501-374-7474. CBG. Thomas East. Sonny Williams’ Steak Room, 7 p.m. 500 President Clinton Ave. 501-324-2999. www.

Continued on page 26 • MAY 11, 2011 25


mation, visit Burns Park, May 14-15. 2700 Willow St., NLR. 501-791-8537.

Thumbpicking Weekend. Ozark Folk Center State Park. 1032 Park Ave., Mountain View. Tyrannosaurus Chicken. White Water Tavern, 10 p.m. 2500 W. 7th. 501-375-8400.

Take Steps for Crohn’s and Colitis. An evening fundraiser walk to raise awareness about the digestive diseases. For more information, call 590-8948 or visit Clinton Presidential Center, 5 p.m., free. 1200 President Clinton Ave. 370-8000.

Continued from page 25



John Evans. The Loony Bin, 7, 9 and 11 p.m., $6-$9. 10301 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-2285555.


REVAMPED: The renovated Central Theater in Hot Springs.

SPA CITY DRAMA Continued from page 20

a box set, but it has to be something that is within the limitations of our physical plant,” Kleinman said. “Likewise, we’re limited in terms of the number of dressing rooms that we have. We need to, at least initially, until we can work something else out, keep the shows relatively small.” But those are the types of constraints many community theater companies face, and Kleinman said he believes Arkansas TheatreWorks will be able to bring in a good mix of shows every season, ideally with one touring show and four local productions. “In my mind, five shows allows you to do a good mix,” he said. In addition to individual ticket sales, Arkansas TheatreWorks sells annual subscriptions, which offer a guaranteed seat for a performance of each show at a discount. So far, the company has sold about 600 subscriptions, with a goal of selling 1,000, Kleinman said. Arkansas TheatreWorks will present four more shows after “Marilyn” this season, all of which will be local productions. Next up will be “Moonlight and Magnolias,” a comedy by Ron Hutchinson about the writing of the screenplay for “Gone with the Wind.” That show has been cast, and Davis said he is in the process of callbacks for the next show, Edward Albee’s enduring classic “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” Davis said that while theatre companies are always happy with higher turnout, he’s been pleased with ticket sales so far. “I always say nobody in their right mind would start a theater company and this is my second one,” he said. “Marilyn: Forever Blonde” runs through May 15, with performances at 7:30 p.m. on weekdays, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and a 2 p.m. Sunday matinee. The one-woman play was written by Greg Thompson and

26 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

stars his wife Sunny Thompson, who sings and sashays and slinks and slips her way through several iconic songs (and outfits) as she narrates the life of Marilyn Monroe. With an uncanny vocal and visual resemblance to the bombshell starlet, Thompson’s performance showcases her dramatic dexterity, shifting between cheesy, ’50s-diner pastiche and a truly eerie channeling of a complex, troubled woman. While deeply sympathetic to its subject, the script doesn’t confer sainthood on her. It is rife with references to Monroe’s sexual exploits, from the earliest days of an innocent 16-year-old bride discovering the pleasures of lovemaking to bitter ruminations on her sex symbol status and the objectification inherent in that role. Thompson’s Monroe also dishes extensively on the appetites of various Hollywood moguls, all of whom, of course, wanted to sample the goods. It also alludes to a one-night fling with Joan Crawford, complete with “screaming orgasm.” It’s a good bet some in the audience Friday night got more than they bargained for. One older couple sitting in the back — the aforementioned cough-drop wrapper crinklers — seemed mortified. After debating whether to stay on for the second act, the woman said, “Well, we spent the money, so we might as well stay.” Toward the show’s end, during a particularly quiet, emotionally climactic moment, the man’s cell phone went off at air raid siren volume. “Dadgummit,” his wife told the audience. “He turned the dang thang off and it’s still ringing.” But Thompson, no doubt a road warrior who’s accustomed to these kinds of things, was completely unfazed. After the show, as the couple was leaving, the husband said, “Was that what you thought it’d be?” “Well, no,” she said. Nothing against the sensibilities and dramatic criticism of Arkansans, but that right there was a ringing endorsement.

“Magical Musicals on Ice.” Featuring music from “Shrek,” “The Lion King,” “Wicked” and “The Sound of Music.” Arkansas Skatium, May 14-15, 5 p.m. 1311 S. Bowman Road.


Buzz B-Q 2011. 90 local BBQ teams compete for $5,000 in cash and prizes. Live music from Josh Green, Moses Tucker Band, Jeff Coleman and the Feeders, Taylor Made and Canvas. North Little Rock RV Park, 10 a.m., $10. 250 S. Locust St., NLR. Arkansas Farmers Market. Locally grown produce. Certified Farmers Market, 7 a.m.-12 p.m. 6th and Main, NLR. Falun Gong meditation. Allsopp Park, 9 a.m., free. Cantrell & Cedar Hill Roads. Farmer’s Market. River Market Pavilions, through Oct. 31: 7 a.m. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552. “Garden Gourmet” Chef Series: Greens and Strawberries. Local chefs demonstrate ways to cook various in-season produce selections from the Farmer’s Market. River Market Pavilions, 9 and 10:30 a.m. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552. Hillcrest Farmers Market. Pulaski Heights Baptist Church, 7 a.m. 2200 Kavanaugh Blvd. Record Swap Saturday. White Water Tavern, 12 p.m. 2500 W. 7th. 501-375-8400. Simply Red 2011. The annual Arkansas AIDS Foundation fundraiser offers dinner, entertainment and silent auctions. For tickets or more information, call 376-6299 or visit Arkansas Queen, 6 p.m., $60. 100 Riverfront Park Drive, NLR. 501-372-5777. www.arkansasqueen. com. Wild Wines of the World and More. Wines from several different countries, food pairings from some of Arkansas’s finest restaurants, a German beer garden and a Russian vodka bar. Little Rock Zoo, 7 p.m., $50 general admission. 1 Jonesboro Drive. 501-666-2406.


Larry Burton. The co-author of “Locally Grown: Recipes Inspired by Local Living” is May’s featured “Good Gardens” speaker. Laman Library, 10 a.m., free. 2801 Orange St., NLR. 501-758-1720. www.


Cycle for Sight. The third annual endurance ride to raise awareness and funding for eye research and outreach. For more information, visit uamshealth. com/cycleforsight. North Shore Riverwalk, 8:30 a.m., $35. Riverwalk Drive, NLR. Fight For Air Climb. The American Lung Association’s annual stairclimb features a vertical race to the 39th floor of the Metropolitan Tower. For more information, call 975-0758 or visit Metropolitan Tower, 8 a.m., $25 registration. 452 W Capitol Ave. Kohl’s US Youth Soccer American Cup. The largest recreational youth soccer tournament in the US brings 135 teams of under-7 through under-14 boys and girls groups to Little Rock. For more infor-



Eve Agee. The author discusses and signs copies of her new book, “The Uterine Health Companion: A Holistic Guide to Lifelong Wellness.” WordsWorth Books & Co., 3 p.m. 5920 R St. 501-663-9198.


“Good Gardens.” A monthly garden program. Laman Library, through Oct. 6, second Saturday of every month, 10 a.m. 2801 Orange St., NLR. 501-758-1720.


Fire & Brimstone. Hilton Garden Inn, 11 a.m. 4100 Glover Lane, NLR. Karaoke. Shorty Small’s, 6-9 p.m. 1475 Hogan Lane, Conway. 501-764-0604. www.shortysmalls. com. “Margarita Sunday.” With Tawanna Campbell, Jeron, Dell Smith, Cliff Aaron and Joel Crutcher. Juanita’s, 9 p.m. 1300 S. Main St. 501-372-1228. Natural State Brass Band. Pulaski Heights Methodist Church, 4 p.m. 4823 Woodlawn Drive. Sunday Jazz Brunch with Ted Ludwig and Joe Cripps. Vieux Carre, 11 a.m. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196.


“Magical Musicals on Ice.” See May 14.


Jewish Food & Cultural Festival 2011. The Jewish Federation of Arkansas’s annual celebration of ethnic food and culture. For more information, visit River Market Pavilions. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552.


Arkansas Travelers vs. Tulsa Drillers. DickeyStephens Park, 2 p.m., $6-$12. 400 W Broadway St., NLR. 501-664-1555. Central Arkansas Roller Derby vs. MO-Kan (Joplin, Mo.). Half-time music from The Frontier Circus. Skate World, 4:30 p.m., $10. 6512 Mabelvale Cut Off. Kohl’s US Youth Soccer American Cup. See May 14.


Karaoke. Thirst n’ Howl, 8:30 p.m. 14710 Cantrell Road. 501-379-8189. Monday Night Jazz: UALR Guitar Ensemble. The Afterthought, 8 p.m., $5. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196. Richie Johnson. Cajun’s Wharf, through May 23: 5 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-375-5351. www.


Dino Djalal. The Indonesian ambassador to the United States speaks. To reserve seats, call 683-5239 or visit publicprograms@clintonschool. Clinton School of Public Service, 12 p.m. 1200 President Clinton Ave. 501-683-5239. www.

Continued on page 28

■ media Forbidden Hillcrest to expand New sister site to cover crime. BY GERARD MATTHEWS

n Central Arkansas has a fairly vibrant news community, what with all the TV and print outlets, bloggers, Twitterers and newshounds both professional and amateur. It’s easy to find news and commentary, in all its guises: left-leaning, right-leaning or somewhere in between. The Forbidden Hillcrest blog, though, stands out amongst its peers, striking a schizophrenic balance between humorous and newsy. Forbidden Hillcrest came onto the scene in late July 2010. The blog is the brainchild of Paul Carr, a 45-year-old Hendrix graduate who works in finance. Early posts centered on the “Hillcrest Pug Strangler,” a mysterious, bespectacled, long-haired individual (bearing a strange likeness to Smoke Up Johnny front man Alan Disaster), who lurked in the neighborhood’s shadows, terrorizing adorable, smush-faced canines. “Well, first of all there’s a preponderance of pugs in Hillcrest,” Carr says. “That’s essentially my version of the id monster from the film ‘Forbidden Planet.’ Basically there was this planet and some folks landed on it and this monster was coming out of nowhere and killing everybody. It was created by someone’s mind. The Hillcrest Pug Strangler was a suburbanized version of that. Instead of a giant monster it was a guy going around choking people’s dogs.” The blog also chronicled the activities of strange cult groups, squatter camps of ex-convicts, space monsters and deranged dentists. Carr says the idea for the blog actually came from H.P. Lovecraft. “He wrote one story called ‘The Horror at Red Hook.’ We went up to Brooklyn for awhile and took a little self-guided walking tour of where that book was set. I got a cool feeling out of it and when I got back home I was in that type of mindset so I just walked around and tried to write about Hillcrest, not really as it is, but as I would have it,” Carr says. It wasn’t long, though, before Carr started covering hyper-local news, from car accidents to developments at the neighborhood Kroger (Carr’s was the first outlet to post pictures from inside the renovated store, which may not seem like a big deal, but, hey, people gotta shop). “The fiction started blurring into truth, like when I did the story about the

hobo camp under the Cantrell bridge,” he says. “If the truth is weird enough I’ll go with that.” Carr now hopes to expand his efforts with a new venture called Station X-Ray, a blog committed to covering neighborhood crime. It’s not finished yet, but Carr says the site will be up this summer. “I’ve found there’s a big hole in crime reporting in Little Rock,” he says. “If there’s a murder it will get in the paper. But burglaries and robberies don’t get into the paper, so neighborhoods don’t have anybody reporting crime.” Carr says he’ll find material for the blog the old-fashioned way, by listening to a police scanner. After a mugging in the Heights last week, Carr posted scanner audio of the event along with a description of what happened and where. Mainstream outlets just don’t cover these types of crimes, Carr says. “These crimes may seem small, but I bet your neighbors would like to hear about it. The Democrat-Gazette is a state-wide newspaper. So it’s hard for them to do neighborhood reporting on that level. It’s a scale issue. It’s just a matter of niche reporting,” Carr says. The new site (which you can find, eventually, at won’t focus strictly on Hillcrest. Carr will report on crime in surrounding neighborhoods, too. Eventually, Carr says the site will crowd-source information, using tips and posts from blog readers. “It’s bigger than a neighborhood thing. It’s kind of a multi-neighborhood deal. I’ve included the Heights, Capitol View, Stifft Station, Hall, Leawood, Briarwood, Foxcroft, Cammack Village and Riverdale. That’s a big chunk of Little Rock. I’m going to treat that as one neighborhood. If it’s successful, we’ll do another one for West Little Rock and maybe part of North Little Rock. If it works, I’ll expand it.” • MAY 11, 2011 27


Continued from page 26


Brian & Nick. Cajun’s Wharf, through May 24: 5 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-375-5351. www.cajunswharf. com. Brian Martin. Maxine’s, 8 p.m. 700 Central Ave., Hot Springs. Carver. Revolution, 9:30 p.m., donations. 300 President Clinton Ave. 501-823-0090. Karaoke Night. Cornerstone Pub & Grill, 8 p.m. 314 Main St., NLR. 501-374-1782. Karaoke Tuesday. Prost, 8 p.m., free. 120 Ottenheimer. 501-244-9550. Karaoke with Big John Miller. Denton’s Trotline, 8 p.m. 2150 Congo Road, Benton. 501-315-1717. Lucious Spiller Band. Copeland’s, 6-9 p.m. 2602 S. Shackleford Road. 501-312-1616. Slobberbone. White Water Tavern, 10 p.m. 2500 W. 7th. 501-375-8400. Tuesday Jam Session with Carl Mouton. The Afterthought, 8 p.m., free. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196.


“Latin Night.” Revolution, 7 p.m., $5 regular, $7 under 21. 300 President Clinton Ave. 501-823-0090.


Charity Bingo Tuesday. ACAC, 6:30 p.m. 608 Main St. 501-244-2974. Farmer’s Market. River Market Pavilions, through Oct. 31: 7 a.m. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552.


Holland Taylor. The Emmy-winning actress discusses her new solo play, “Ann: An Affectionate Portrait of Ann Richards.” To reserve seats, call 683-5239 or visit publicprograms@clintonschool. Clinton School of Public Service, 6 p.m. 1200 President Clinton Ave. 501-683-5239. www.


Acoustic Open Mic with Kat Hood. The Afterthought, 8 p.m. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-6631196. Bolly Open Mic Hype Night with Osyrus Bolly and DJ Messiah. All American Wings, 9 p.m. 215 W. Capitol Ave. 501-376-4000. Darryl Edwards. Cajun’s Wharf, 5 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-375-5351. Foo Fighters, Motorhead, Biffy Clyro. Verizon Arena, 7 p.m., $23-$47. 1 Alltel Arena Way, NLR. 501-975-9001. Foundation, Motives, Pose No Threat, No Way Home, Await the Aftermath. Downtown Music Hall, 7 p.m., $10. 211 W. Capitol. 501-376-1819. Javelina, Holy Angel, Brother Andy. White Water Tavern, 10 p.m. 2500 W. 7th. 501-375-8400. www. Karaoke at Khalil’s. Khalil’s Pub, 7 p.m. 110 S. Shackleford Road. 501-224-0224. www.khalilspub. com. Karaoke. Hibernia Irish Tavern, 9 p.m. 9700 N Rodney Parham Road. 501-246-4340. Karaoke with Big John Miller. Denton’s Trotline, 8 p.m. 2150 Congo Road, Benton. 501-315-1717. Lance Daniels. Cornerstone Pub & Grill, through May 25: 9 p.m. 314 Main St., NLR. 501-374-1782. Ted Ludwig Trio. Capital Bar and Grill, 5 p.m., free. 111 Markham St. 501-374-7474. www.capitalhotel. com/CBG.


Dhani Jones. The NFL linebacker discusses his nonprofit organization, “Bow Tie Cause.” To reserve seats, call 683-5239 or e-mail Clinton School of Public Service, 12 p.m. 1200 President Clinton Ave. 501-683-5239.


Arkansas Travelers vs. Springfield Cardinals. 28 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

Dickey-Stephens Park, May 18, 7:10 p.m.; May 19, 7:10 p.m., $6-$12. 400 W Broadway St., NLR. 501-664-1555.

THIS WEEK IN THEATER “Good Boys and True.” An all-male boarding school is torn apart when a disturbing videotape involving a respected prep-school senior is found on campus. By Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa. For tickets or more information, call 374-3761 or visit The Weekend Theater, through May 23: Fri., Sat., 7:30 p.m., $14 general, $10 students and seniors. 1001 W. 7th St. 501-374-3761. “Marilyn, Forever Blonde.” Marilyn Monroe reflects on her life during what would become her final photo shoot in 1962. For tickets or more information, visit Central Theatre, Wed., May 11, 7:30 p.m.; Thu., May 12, 7:30 p.m.; Fri., May 13, 8 p.m.; Sat., May 14, 8 p.m.; Sun., May 15, 2 p.m., $22.50$32.50. 1008 Central Ave., Hot Springs. “The Odd Couple.” Neil Simon’s play about mismatched, middle-aged roommates as re-imagined with women. For tickets or more information, visit Shepherd of Peace Lutheran Church, May 12-14, 7 p.m.; May 20-21, 7 p.m.; Sun., May 22, 2 p.m., $12. 449 Millwood Circle, Maumelle. “Plaza Suite.” Neil Simon comedy. Pocket Community Theater, through May 22: Sun., 2:30 p.m.; Thu.-Sat., 7:30 p.m. 170 Ravine St., Hot Springs. “There’s a Boy in the Girls’ Bathroom.” No one likes Bradley, the class bully and the oldest kid in the fifth grade. But with the help of Carla, the new school counselor, Bradley learns to believe in himself. In the Children’s Theater. For tickets or more information, call 372-4000 or visit Arkansas Arts Center, through May 15. 501 E. 9th St. 501-372-4000. www. “Til Beth Do Us Part.” The Public Theatre, through May 29: Fri., Sat., 7:30 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m., $14 general. 616 Center St. 501-374-7529. www.thepublictheatre. com. “Witness for the Prosecution.” An Agatha Christie murder mystery following the plight of a man accused of murdering a spinster for her money. Royal Theatre, May 12-14, 7 p.m.; Sun., May 15, 2 p.m.; May 19-21, 7 p.m.; Sun., May 22, 2 p.m., $10 general, $8 seniors, $5 students. 111 S. Market St., Benton.


ACAC, 608 Main St.: Work by the Local Catz Group, Bethanie Stellman, Mesk, x3mex, chapin, Jason Harrington, alien 15, Josh Henderson, Michael Schaeffer, Joanna Tilley, Dap Star, Lisa Krannichfeld and Robert Messenger, through May, reception, live music 7-10 p.m. May 13, 2nd Friday Art Night. 1-5 p.m. Tue.-Fri., noon-6 p.m. Sat.-Sun. 398-9474. ARKANSAS STUDIES INSTITUTE, 401 President Clinton Ave.: Arkansas Art Educators’ “State Youth Art Show 2011,” May 13-July 30, main gallery, reception 5-8 p.m. May 13, 2nd Friday Art Night; “Norwood Creech: Selected Works from the Northeastern Arkansas Delta,” through June 18, Mezzanine Gallery; “Book Arts,” handmade books and journals, through May 28, Atrium Gallery. 9 a.m.6 p.m. Mon.-Sat. 320-5791. CHRIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH, 509 Scott St.: “Arkansas Pastel Society Member Spring Show,” work by Shirley Anderson, S. Caruthers, Gertrude Casciano, Lois Davis, Marlene Gremillion, Sheilah Halderman, Mary Nancy Henry, Susan Hurst, Melanie Johnston, Sister Maria Liebeck, Jo Magee, Diana Shearon, Cathy Span, Mary Ann Stafford, Debbie Strobel, Teresa Widdifield and Caryl Joy Young, reception 5-8 p.m. May 13, 2nd Friday Art Night, music by the Smittle Band. 375-2342. COURTYARD MARRIOTT, 521 President Clinton Ave.: Work by members of The ArtGroup Maumelle, reception 5-8 p.m. May 13, 2nd Friday Art Night. 975-9855. COX CREATIVE CENTER, 120 River Market Ave.: “Blank,” printmaking exhibition by UALR students; “Little Rock Is Working,” photography contest, open 5-8 p.m. May 13, 2nd Friday Art Night. HEARNE FINE ART, 1001 Wright Ave.: Portraits

Continued on page 28

■ artnotes An outpouring of art New venues swell 2nd Friday. BY LESLIE NEWELL PEACOCK

n May’s 2nd Friday Art Night event feaWest’s work with photographs by Diana tures a happier flood than the waters now Michelle Hausam, who is documenting invading the Delta: One of artists, thanks West’s work in film and pictures. There to a 2nd Friday swollen by several special will be a film crew at Friday night’s recepvenues who’ll be participating this month tion and at an artist’s talk set for 2-4 p.m. only. So many artists are participating that Saturday, May 14. I call your attention to the calendar listA news release from the gallery says ings for names rather than repeating them West, as a 19-year-old, had an etching here; see this page. Participants include accepted into the permanent collection regulars — Arkansas Studies Institute, of the Museum of Modern Art. He holds Christ Church, the Courtyard Marriott and an MFA from Southern Illinois UniverHistoric Arkansas Museum (which along sity, but the recluse has not exhibited his with 2nd Friday opener, “Mid-Southern work until recently, after he met Hausam. Watercolorists 41st Annual Exhibition,” is showing what you might call its mini-blockbuster “Reel to Real: ‘Gone with the Wind’ and the Civil War in Arkansas”). Special venues are the Cox Creative Center, Arkansas Community Arts Cooperative, HH Architects, Lafayette Square and the Quapaw Quarter Methodist Church. Participating restaurants include the Copper Grill, Dizzy’s Bistro and Lulav. Several of the exhibits are group shows. Those names I’ve directed you to in the calendar AT HH ARCHITECTS: Work by Jeff Horton (above) and total 52, but that could Gabriel Griffith. be only half the total, because I don’t have the names of the artists in the “Blank” student Hausam and West became acquainted show, the Mid-South Watercolorists show, after she saw a fence he’d constructed of The ArtGroup Maumelle, or the Youth bicycles on his Ozark property and asked Show (at Arkansas Studies Institute). to photograph it. The news release quotes If you can make it to all the 2nd Friday West as saying, “I just figured I’d be dead shows, you should get a good idea of what 10 years before anyone would ever notice art-making in Arkansas today looks like. my art.” If you make it a point to go to Hearne Fine The example of West’s work sent by Art, which this month isn’t participating M2 is an Ozarks scene in sketchy inks and in 2nd Friday, but which has a group show on old and discolored paper. You can see a featuring the work of area portraitists, video of West sketching on M2 gallery’s your knowledge of the Central Arkansas Facebook page. arts scene will become encyclopedic. n Check the calendar also for the multiAfter your rounds at 2nd Friday ventude of things going on in Eureka Springs, ues, you’re going to have to put on your which is celebrating its May Festival of personal jetpack and head to M2 Gallery the Arts. All Spring Street galleries are in the Pleasant Ridge Town Center so you hosting events into the evening on Satdon’t miss its Friday opening reception urday, and the Downtown Art Fair runs for “Westland: The Life and Art of Tim Friday and Saturday in Basin Spring Park West,” from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. West is the and along Center Street. For information 74-year-old artist from Winslow whose on all the festival’s events, check its webwork was featured a couple of years ago site, at M2; as it did in 2009, M2 is combining

check it out (and if you need to catch up, the runs of the 9th, 10th and the first season of the 11th Doctor are all on Netflix Instant View).

DOCTOR WHO: NEW EPISODES BBC America 8 p.m. Saturdays n I must admit that even as a hardcore fan of the seminal British sci-fi series “Doctor Who,” I was completely and wholly skeptical that Matt Smith, who plays the 11th Doctor, could pull off the character. If you don’t know anything about the series, here’s a primer: The Doctor is a human-appearing alien called a Time Lord, who flies around in space and time in a machine that looks like a blue police box (don’t ask why... it’s too complicated), usually accompanied by a comely female companion. When he gets injured to the point of death, the Doctor does a spiffy little trick called Regeneration, which means he comes back as pretty much the same character, only in a brand new body. How else do you think the series has been on 47 years, pal? Yes, there have been weird-looking Doctors in the past, but Matt Smith is a whole different breed of weird. He’s very young, for one thing, with a face only a mother could love. New show runner Steven Moffat has him decked out in a bow tie and tweed suit most episodes, making him look like a gawky, teen-age door-to-door salesman. All that said, his latest companion (Amy Pond, played by the redheaded and fabulous-to-look-at Karen Gillan) is great, and I love “Doctor Who” so much that I decided to put aside my love for 10th Doctor David Tennant and give Smith a shot. I’m glad I stuck it out. Smith, though a little more twitchy and bonkers than Tennant, is absolutely fab in the role, bringing a depth and mystery to the Doctor that others have lacked. Now, Smith and Co. are back for an all-new season. It started three weeks ago with a bang: An episode (filmed in America for the first time in “Doctor Who” history) built around a mysterious incident in which an older version of the Doctor was killed before our very eyes; an event which appears to be shaping up as the linchpin the season will orbit around. Too, in the grand tradition of “Doctor Who,” this season introduces an all-new evil for our heroes to fight: The Silence — rubber-faced baddies in black suits who exert mind control over humanity in order to make people forget they’ve seen them the minute we look away. As an added geek bonus, this week’s episode, “The Doctor’s Wife,” features a script by the legendary fantasy writer Neil Gaiman. Definitely

NETFLIX PIX: MARWENCOL (2010) n There is something about an amazing documentary that a fictional movie will never be able to touch: that certain knowledge that even when the projectors turn off and all the popcorn is eaten, all the pain and joy and courage and cowardice of the lives you saw on the screen is still going on somewhere in the world. If cinema is a celebration of the human imagination, documentary is a celebration of humanity itself. That said, it’s hard to remember a documentary that has moved me more than 2010’s “Marwencol.” It’s the story of Mark Hogancamp. In April 2000, Hogancamp walked out of a bar and was attacked by five teen-agers. The beating they delivered was unmerciful, turning his face to pulp and leaving him in a coma for nine days. When he finally woke up, Hogancamp had to learn to live again: to walk, to talk, to feed himself. Maybe worse, he had no memory of his life before the beating, and was left profoundly brain damaged. After his insurance ran out, Hogancamp was kicked out of the hospital and forced to find his own therapy to bring himself back from the brink. Always a World War II buff, Hogancamp began playing with 1/6thscale World War II figures — something like G.I. Joes — to help regain his fine motor skills and coordination. As his real world shrank, cut off from friends and family by his disabilities, Hogancamp’s fictional world expanded. Eventually, using old doghouses and junk, he built a 1/6th scale, WWII-era Belgian town that he called Marwencol. Populated by figures he hand-painted to resemble his flesh-and-blood friends, it’s a real place to Hogancamp, full of intrigue and brutality that often reflects his fears about the world. Though he started Marwencol solely for himself, Hogancamp eventually rose to some fame as an outsider artist after a neighbor showed some of the photographs he took of Marwencol to a gallery owner in New York. Though “Marwencol” initially seemed a little goofy, I eventually found myself nearly moved to tears by this story — by the depth of feeling Hogancamp has for the plastic people who populate his town and his difficulties in separating his real world from his fantasy world (as when he became innocently infatuated with a married neighbor, and told her his doll and the doll he made to resemble her were getting married). In short: This is a lovely doc, one that speaks volumes about the healing power of art and the resilience of the human mind. It definitely should be in your Netflix queue. — David Koon


May 28


aRKansas Cherry Street Pavilion



11th AnnuAl ArkAnsAs DeltA

Fa m i ly G o s p e l F e s t ·

WItH - Mavis Staples, The Holmes Brothers, Tim Rogers & the Fellas.

PluS - The Lee Boys, Gloryland Pastor’s Choir with Pastor Cedric Hayes, Rev. John Wilkins, The Dixie Wonders, The Fantastic Jordan Wonders, and Voices of Joy.

This festival is produced in part through a grant from the Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council.

141 cherry st., Helena, aR. 870-338-4350 or 800-358-0972

Delta Cultural Center is a museum of the Department of Arkansas Heritage. • MAY 11, 2011 29


Continued from page 28 in eight media by Arkansas artists, including Rex Deloney, Aj Smith, Bisa Butler, Edward Wade, Stephen Cefalo, Larry Hampton, LaToya Hobbs, Loni Harshaw, Marjorie WilliamsSmith, Le Ron McAdoo, Bryan Massey Sr., Caroline Brown and Jacoby Warlick, through June 7. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Thu., 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Fri., 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat. 372-6822. HH ARCHITECTS, 1219 S. Spring St.: Paintings by Jeff Horton and Gabriel Griffith, reception 5-8 p.m. May 13, 2nd Friday Art Night. 3750052. HISTORIC ARKANSAS MUSEUM, 200 E. Third St.: “Mid-Southern Watercolorists 41st Annual Exhibition,” May 13-Aug. 13, Trinity Gallery, reception 5-8 p.m. May 13, 2nd Friday Art Night, with music by Mare Carmody and Friends; “Reel to Real: ‘Gone with the Wind’ and the Civil War in Arkansas,” artifacts from the ShawTumblin collection, including costumes and screen tests, along with artifacts from the HAM collection, including slave narratives, uniforms and more; through April 30, 2012; “Empty Spaces,” digital media by Jasmine Greer, through June 5. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Sat., 1-5 p.m. Sun. $2.50 adults, $1.50, $1 children for tours of grounds. 324-9351. LAFAYETTE SQUARE, 523 Louisiana: Paintings, pottery and jewelry by Jennie Berna, Jennifer Coleman, Anne Crow, Austin Grimes, Judy Henderson, Susie Henley, Glenda Josephson, Linda Martz, Dee Schulten, Scotty Shively, Jennifer Waymack and Betsy Woodyard, lobby, 5-8 p.m. May 13, 2nd Friday Art Night. M2GALLERY, 11525 Cantrell Road (Pleasant Ridge Town Center): “Westland: The Life and Art of Tim West,” artwork by West, photographs by Diana Michelle Hausam, with documentary filming, 6-9 p.m. May 13, artist talk 2-4 p.m. May 14. 225-6257. QUAPAW QUARTER UNITED METHODIST CHURCH, 1601 S. Louisiana St.: Sharla Chalfant, Charles Henry James, Lisa Claas-James, Hamid Ebrahimifar, David Warren, Kathy Nugent, Dominique Simmons, Tim Ellison and Lyuba Bogan, reception 5-8 p.m. May 13, 2nd Friday Art Night. 375-1600. n Eureka Springs CORNERSTORNE FIRST BANK, 152 E. Van Buren: “Bank on Art,” reception 5-7 p.m. May 12. 479-253-2265. DOWNTOWN ART FAIR, Basin Spring Park, Center Street: Juried show, 1-5 p.m. May 13, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. May 14. 479-253-1839. EUREKA SPRINGS HISTORICAL MUSEUM, 95 S. Main: Photographs by Betty Maffei, through May 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Mon.-Sat. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sun. 479253-9417. EUREKA THYME, 19 Spring St.: Watercolors by Carol Dickie, 1-4 p.m. and 6-9 p.m. May 14. 479-363-9600. IRIS AT THE BASIN PARK GALLERY, 8 Spring St.: Dixie and Bill Westerman, paintings and photography, receptions 1-4 p.m and 6-9 p.m. May 14. LOVIN’ OVEN BAKERIA, 121 E. Van Buren: Paintings by Jody Stephenson, reception 6-8 p.m. May 13, show through May 479-253-0123. MAIN STAGE CREATIVE COMMUNITY CENTER, 67 N. Main: “Shrine On,” shrines by Dee Garrett, John Rankine, Ralph “Mr. Shrine” Wilson and Susan Shore, through May 29, reception 6-9 p.m. May 13. 479-981-1636. OUT ON MAIN, 1 Basin Spring Ave.: Work by Barbara Kennedy, reception 2-4 p.m. and 6-9 p.m. May 14. 479-253-8449. STUDIO 62, 335 W. Van Buren: Sixth annual “Art as Prayer,” work several artists, through May, open daily except Tue. 479-363-9209. ZARKS GALLERY, 67 Spring St.: 13th annual “Group Invitational Theme Show — “Cats and Dogs,” work by more than 30 area artists, all day May 13, concludes with reception 6-9 p.m. 479-253-2626. n Yellville P.A.L. FINE ART GALLERY: “2011 Young Artists of the Ozarks,” reception and ribbon presentation, 6-8 p.m. May 13. 870-405-6316.



Couple of Ways of Doing Something,” daguerreotype photographs by Chuck Close, poems by Bob Holman, through July 26; “The Impressionists and Their Influence,” paintings and works on paper from the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, private collections and the Arts Center Foundation collection, through June 26, $10 adults, $8 seniors, $6 youth, members free; “Michael Peterson: Evolution/Revolution,” wood sculpture, through July 3; “Currents in Contemporary Art,” “Masterworks,” “Paul Signac Watercolors and Drawings,” ongoing. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.-Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. 372-4000. CANTRELL GALLERY, 8206 Cantrell Road: “Lee Nora Parlor’s Painted Photo Album,” oils inspired by photos in the artist’s grandmother’s album, through May 28. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Sat. 224-1335. GALLERY 26, 2601 Kavanaugh Blvd.: Dominique Simmons, David Warren, recent works, through May 14. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tue.-Sat. 664-8996. GREG THOMPSON FINE ART, 429 Main St., NLR: “Benini: The Painter’s Journey,” works from his “Courting Kaos: Face of God” and “Riding Kaos: Truth and the Journey” series, through May 18. 6642787. KETZ GALLERY, 705 Main St., NLR: 2nd annual “Spring Art Show,” work by Lois Davis, Peggy Roberson and Paula Steel. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.-Fri., 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Sat. 529-6330. LAMAN LIBRARY, 2801 Orange St., NLR: “Visions of the Universe,” drawings and diagrams by Galileo and other astronomers, images by the Hubble Space Telescope, through May 20; “Our Lives, Our Stories: America’s Greatest Generation,” oral histories, through May 25. 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Mon.-Thu., 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Fri.-Sat., 1-5 p.m. Sun. 771-1995. LOCAL COLOUR GALLERY, 5811 Kavanaugh Blvd.: Art and jewelry by members of artists’ cooperative. 501-265-0422. RED DOOR GALLERY, 3715 JFK, NLR: Buddy Whitlock, featured artist, also work by Lola Abellan, Mary Allison, Georges Artaud, Theresa Cates, Caroline’s Closet, Kelly Edwards, Jane Hankins, James Hayes, Amy Hill-Imler, Morris Howard, Jim Johnson, Annette Kagy, Capt. Robert Lumpp, Joe Martin, Pat Matthews and others.10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sat. 753-5227. STEPHANO’S FINE ART, 5501 Kavanaugh Blvd.: Work by Stephano, Patrick Cunningham, Liz Kemp, Jeff Waddle, B.J. Aguiar, Kelley Wise, Steve Thomas, Jeannie Clifton. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Tue.-Sat., 1-5 p.m. Sun. 563-4218. TERRY HOUSE, 7th and Rock Sts.: “Arkansas League of Artists Spring Members Show,” through May 372-4000.


CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL MUSEUM VISITOR CENTER, Bates and Park: Exhibits on the 1957 desegregation of Central and the civil rights movement. 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. daily. 374-1957. CLINTON PRESIDENTIAL CENTER, 1200 President Clinton Ave.: “The Secret Art of Dr. Seuss,” through May 22; “Revolution and Rebellion: Wars, Words and Figures,” original engravings of the Declaration of Independence, through May 22; “Historical Figures of the Revolutionary and Civil Wars,” figurines by George Stuart, through May 22; exhibits about policies and White House life during the Clinton administration. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.Sat., 1-5 p.m. Sun. $7 adults; $5 college students, seniors, retired military; $3 ages 6-17. 370-8000. MacARTHUR MUSEUM OF ARKANSAS MILITARY HISTORY, MacArthur Park: “In Search of Pancho Villa,” artifacts from soldiers of the period, medals and original sketches of the Mexican Punitive Expedition, through May; exhibits on Arkansas’s military history. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Tue.-Fri., 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sat., 1-4 p.m. Sun. 376-4602. MOSAIC TEMPLARS CULTURAL CENTER, Ninth and Broadway: “Southern Journeys: African American Artists of the South,” through Aug. 11; exhibits on African-Americans in Arkansas, including one on the Ninth Street business district, the Mosaic Templars business and more. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.Sat. 683–3593. OLD STATE HOUSE, 300 W. Markham St.: “An Enduring Union,” artifacts documenting the postwar Confederate and Union veteran reunions in the state; “Arkansas/Arkansaw: A State and Its Reputation,” the evolution of the state’s hillbilly image. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Sat., 1-5 p.m. Sun. 3249685.



Friday, may 13 – Thursday, may 19 Potiche R 2:00 4:20 6:45 9:15

Catherine Deneuve, Gerard Depardieu, Fabrice Luchini

MiRal R 1:45 4:00 7:00 9:15

Frieda Pinto, Hiam Abbass, Willem Dafoe FREE WI-FI i aM NR 2:00 4:20 7:15 9:15 In thE lobby Tom Schadyac, Desmond Tutu, Noam Chomsky WiN WiN R 2:15 4:25 6:45 9:00 Paul Giamatti, Amy Ryan, Jeffrey Tambor Sundance Film Festival of Gods & MeN R 1:45 7:00 Lambert Wilson, Michael Lonsdale, Olivier Rabourdin Cannes Film Fest, Independent Spirit Awards the Music NeveR stoPPed PG 4:15 9:15 J.K. Simmons, Julia Ormond, Mia Maestro

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‘BRIDESMAIDS’: Annie (Kristen Wiig, right), a maid of honor for her best friend Lillian (Maya Rudolph, second to right), joins a wily pack of bridesmaids in the erratic days leading up to the big wedding even though she’s broke, burned-out and out of step with the rest of the wedding party.



7th & Thayer • Little Rock • (501) 375-8400

MAY 13-15

movielistings All theater listings run Friday to Thursday unless otherwise noted.

Check for updates. Market Street Cinema showtimes at or after 9 p.m. are for Friday and Saturday only. NEW MOVIES Bridesmaids (R) — After her best friend gets engaged, a broke, lovelorn maid of honor has to fake her way through crazy bridesmaid rituals. With Kristen Wiig and Maya Rudolph. Breckenridge: 1:45, 4:30, 7:25, 10:05. Chenal 9: 11:00, 1:45, 4:30, 7:15, 10:00. Rave: 10:35, 11:30. Miral (R) – An orphaned Palestinian girl finds herself sucked into the middle of Arab-Israeli conflict. Directed by Julian Schnabel. Market Street: 1:45, 4:00, 7:00, 9:15. Potiche (R) – A trophy wife takes control of an embattled business after her husband, the company president, is taken hostage by striking employees. With Catherine Deneuve and Gerard Depardieu. Market Street: 2:00, 4:20, 6:45, 9:15. Priest (PG-13) – A legendary warrior-priest breaks his religious vows in order to save his niece from a pack of vampires. With Paul Bettany and Cam Gigandet. Breckenridge: 1:25, 4:15, 7:10, 9:50. Chenal 9: 11:15, 1:35, 4:05, 7:05, 9:30. Rave: 12:50, 3:15, 5:50, 8:20, 10:50 (2D); 11:50, 2:15, 4:50, 7:20, 9:50 (3D). Riverdale 10: 11:35, 1:35, 3:35, 5:35, 7:40, 9:35. RETURNING THIS WEEK African Cats (G) – Two families of big cats in the wild African landscape are documented raising their young. Narrated by Samuel L. Jackson. Rave: 10:50. Arthur (PG-13) – A drunken playboy in heavy-duty arrested development has to choose between an enormous inheritance and the woman he falls for. With Russell Brand and Greta Gerwig. Movies 10: 12:20, 2:50, 5:15, 7;35, 10:05. Atlas Shrugged: Part I (PG-13) – The adaptation of Ayn Rand’s novel brings Tea Party icon John Galt to the big screen. With Paul Johansson and Taylor Schilling. Riverdale 10: 11:10, 1:20, 3:25, 5:30, 7:50, 9:55. Battle: Los Angeles (PG-13) – When Earth is brutally attacked by extraterrestrial forces, a platoon of Marines must defend Los Angeles, the final stronghold on the planet. With Aaron Eckhart, Ne-Yo. Movies 10: 1:00, 4:10, 7:00, 9:45. The Conspirator (PG-13) – A young lawyer and Civil War veteran has to defend a woman charged in conspiring with John Wilkes Booth to kill President Lincoln. Directed by Robert Redford. Riverdale 10: 11:30, 1:55, 4:30, 7:15, 10:00. Diary of a Wimpy Kid 2: Rodrick Rules (PG) – “Wimpy” Greg and his bullying older brother Rodrick have to deal with their parents’ efforts

32 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

to make a brotherly bond. With Zachary Gordon. Movies 10: 12:05, 2:35, 4:55, 7;15, 9:35. Fast Five (PG-13) – The fifth installation of the “Fast and the Furious” series sees the crew in Rio, stuck between a drug lord and a tenacious federal agent. With Vin Diesel and Paul Walker. Breckenridge: 1:10, 4:25, 7:15, 10:05. Chenal 9: 12:00, 4:00, 7:00, 9:50. Rave: 10:55, 12:35, 1:10, 1:55, 3:40, 4:40, 5:15, 7:05, 8:05, 10:10, 11:10. Riverdale 10: 11:20, 2:05, 4:50, 7:35, 10:15. Gnomeo and Juliet (G) – Romeo and Juliet with gnomes. Voiced by James McAvoy, Emily Blunt, Michael Caine. Movies 10: 12:15, 2:20, 4:30, 6:40, 8:50 (2D); 1:15, 3:25, 5:35, 7:45, 8:50 (2D); 1:15, 3:25, 5:35, 7:45, 9:55 (3D). Hoodwinked Too: Hood vs. Evil (PG) – Red Riding Hood and the Wolf are called upon to track down the kidnapped duo of Hansel and Gretel. Voiced by Glenn Close and Patrick Warburton. Riverdale 10: 11:15, 1:50, 4:35, 7:05, 9:30. I Am (NR) – Four short films about identity and dignity in the modern Indian world. With Juhi Chawla and Manisha Koirala. Market Street: 2:00, 4:20, 7:15, 9:15. I Am Number Four (PG-13) – A teen-age fugitive with special powers is on the run from agents trying to kill him. With Alex Smith and Timothy Olyphant. Movies 10: 12:10, 2:40, 5:10, 7:40, 10:10. Insidious (PG-13) – A realm called The Further threatens to trap a comatose child. His parents learn to battle something that science can’t explain. With Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne. Breckenridge: 1:35, 4:30, 7:25, 9:45. Jumping the Broom (PG-13) – Two AfricanAmerican families from different socioeconomic backgrounds spend a wedding weekend together in Martha’s Vineyard. With Angela Bassett and Laz Alonzo. Breckenridge: 1:30, 4:35, 7:35, 10:10. Chenal 9: 11:10, 1:55, 4:35, 7:10, 9:45. Rave: 10:30, 12:45, 1:15, 3:45, 4:15, 6:45, 7:15, 8;15, 9;45, 10:15, 11:15. Riverdale 10: 11:45, 2:10, 4:40, 7:20, 9:50. The Lincoln Lawyer (R) – A lawyer runs his firm out of the back of an old Lincoln while working on a high-profile case in Beverly Hills. With Matthew McConaghey and Marissa Tomei. Riverdale 10: 11:55, 2:25, 4:55, 7:25, 10:10. Madea’s Big Happy Family (PG-13) – This is the fifth Madea movie and the 10th flick Tyler Perry’s made in five years. Five. Years. Directed, written by and starring Tyler Perry. Breckenridge: 1:15, 1:40, 4:05, 4:45, 7:05, 7:30, 9:30, 10:00. Rave: 12:00, 3:05, 5:45, 8:45, 11:25. Riverdale 10: 11:00, 1:15, 3:30, 5:45, 8:00, 10:15. The Music Never Stopped (PG) – A father struggles to bond with an estranged son who, after suffering from a brain tumor, cannot form new memories. Market Street: 4:15, 9:15.

Of Gods & Men (R) – Threatened by a group of fundamental terrorists, a group of Trappist monks in Algeria must decide whether to flee or hold their ground. Directed by Xavier Beauvois. Market Street: 1:45, 7:00. Red Riding Hood (PG-13) – In a medieval village that’s haunted by a werewolf, a girl falls for an outcast orphan even though her parents arranged her to marry a wealthy young man. With Amanda Seyfried, Gary Oldman. Movies 10: 12:25, 2:55, 5:20, 7:50, 10:15. Rio (G) – A domesticated macaw from suburban Minnesota takes to Rio de Janeiro to find the freewheeling bird of his dreams. Voiced by Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway. Breckenridge: 1:15, 4:10, 7:05, 9:25 (3D). Chenal 9: 11:20, 1:50, 4:30, 7:25, 9:35 (2D). Rave: 11:15 (2D); 1:40, 4:10, 6:55, 9:25 (3D). Something Borrowed (PG-13) – A perpetually single urbanite falls in love with her best friend’s new fiance. With Kate Hudson and John Krasinski. Breckenridge: 4:20, 7:20, 9:55. Chenal 9: 11:30, 2:05, 4:45, 7:40, 10:10. Rave: 11:40, 2:35, 5:20, 8:10, 10:55. Soul Surfer (PG) – In spite of losing an arm in a shark attack, a teen-age girl with a passion for surfing returns to the ocean. With AnnaSophia Robb and Helen Hunt. Rave: 10:45, 1:45, 4:45, 7:45, 10:25. Sucker Punch (PG-13) – A young girl escapes to a fantasy world after being locked in a mental asylum by her evil stepfather. Directed by Zach Snyder. Movies 10: 1:10, 4:00, 7:05, 9:40. Thor (PG-13) – The comic book hero comes to life as the cocky warrior gets banished to Earth and has to defend humans from impending doom. Directed by Kenneth Branagh. Breckenridge: 1:35, 4:40, 7:40, 10:15 (2D); 1:00, 4:00, 7:00, 9:35 (3D). Chenal 9: 11:30, 2:00, 4:45, 7:30, 10:15 (2D); 11:00, 1:30, 4:15, 7:15, 10:00 (3D). Rave: 12:30, 2:00, 3:30, 6:30, 8:00, 9:30 (2D); 10:30, 11:00, 1:00, 1:30, 4:00, 4:30, 5:00, 7:00, 7:30, 10:00, 10:30, 11:00 (3D). Riverdale 10: 11:50, 2:20, 4:45, 7:10, 9:35. Water For Elephants (PG-13) – After his parents are killed, a young veterinarian joins a traveling circus to tend to its animals. With Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon. Breckenridge: 1:05, 4:05, 6:50, 9:40. Chenal 9: 11:05, 1:50, 4:40, 7:20, 10:05. Rave: 11:05, 2:10, 5:30, 8:30, 11:30. Win, Win (R) – A volunteer high school wrestling coach finds himself entwined in a student’s unsavory family life. With Paul Giamatti, Amy Ryan. Market Street: 2:15, 4:25, 6:45, 9:00. Chenal 9 IMAX Theatre: 17825 Chenal Parkway, 821-2616, Cinemark Movies 10: 4188 E. McCain Blvd., 9457400, Cinematown Riverdale 10: Riverdale Shopping Center, 296-9955, Market Street Cinema: 1521 Merrill Drive, 3128900, Rave Colonel Glenn 18: 18 Colonel Glenn Plaza, 687-0499, Regal Breckenridge Village 12: 1-430 and Rodney Parham, 224-0990,


o FA A w r r o M Ge Pe er N N ’S tA SA M tu kt rD . Ay ! A FuLL ServiCe NeiGhborhooD GroCery

‘SOMETHING BORROWED’: Kate Hudson and Ginnifer Goodwin star.

■ moviereview Tone deaf

Many Thanks to KATV Pam’s Picks for 6.5 out of 7 stars.

Come see what all the fuss is about!

‘Something Borrowed’ strikes a dull chord. n Oh, my, what to do with Kate Hudson. If you were her friend in any of the movies in which she plays a post-sorority, status-hungry bride-to-be, you’d want to see her married off into oblivion, too. Get a ring around that finger, and maybe you get the shot glass out of her cleavage. In “Something Borrowed,” as the aggressively narcissistic Darcy, she’s the gal pal you wouldn’t introduce to a gentleman. Yet that’s just what her best friend Rachel (Ginnifer Goodwin) inadvertently does, and romance ensues. The resulting love triangle feels relatively authentic, but it doesn’t contain enough wit or pith to make us much care what happens. By the time “Something Borrowed” picks up the story, the trio’s fate appears sealed: Dex (Colin Egglesfield) and Darcy, cheerfully betrothed, are anchoring a birthday party for Rachel, the attorney next door with a splash of mousy thrown in. She has an office with her name on the window but reaches her 30th feeling like she has wasted her 20s. (Note: Unless you truly wasted your 20s, you’ve wasted your 20s.) Seeing her despondent, Dex drags her out for one last drink, which leads to her confessing that she had a crush on him in law school, which leads to a cab ride backseat makeout session, which leads to him scrambling to find pants when they awake in her bed the next morning. Apparently Dex, whose generic good looks recall a younger Tom Cruise frozen in onrushing headlights, never got around to noticing how much Rachel fancied him years earlier. Now the quandary: Does he stand pat with the firecracker blonde? Or ditch for the adorable brunette? Usually romantic comedies in this mold string the audience along, letting us wonder whether it was a one-off mistake or something more until the obvious is allowed to happen. To its credit “Something Borrowed” doubles down fairly early: Dex and Rachel dig each other, and because Dex is neither a wildebeest tamer nor Brett Michaels, he’s clearly better off with Rachel


than with Darcy. But Darcy, through all her flailing, is still Dex’s fiancee and Rachel’s best friend. At least the film gives us enough credit to consider the real repercussions a maid of honor shagging the groom a few weeks before the wedding. Dex’s blue blood (a glimpse of the wedding invite reveals that he’s a III) won’t let him behave like a red-blooded romantic that easily. “Something Borrowed” leaves its secondary characters to commit most of the laughs. Ashley Williams is a quiet scenestealer as a sex-hungry bridesmaid with her eye on Ethan (The Office’s John Krasinski, sans his usual understated cockiness), the good-natured writer friend who keeps his hands to himself but dispenses advice freely. Steve Howey is a relief as a horndog stoner named Marcus, whose irrepressible bastardism offers some low-hanging chuckles. Yes, there are some grins here. But ultimately the downfall of “Something Borrowed” is its tone. Its treacle-y piano score hints that we need a hankie, but the 1994-vintage soundtrack urges its target demographic to remember its first high school keg party. It also never quite figures out its stance on its settings, NewYork City and the Hamptons. Gotham used to grow cinema’s most vibrant characters, its boldest ideas. Now director Luke Greenfield can only distinguish himself as an anti-Scorsese, a nonRob Reiner, a Woody Allen’t. Aside from a couple of giddy aerial shots at sunset, there’s not a single concept or view of New York here befitting the city’s stature. No one you meet in this movie is motivated by a Real Thought of any kind. Instead, these bland, hollow people are Greek Weeking their way though the capital of the world with a solipsistic nonchalance that gives even brain-dead bourgeoisie a bad name. They muffle the drama of “Something Borrowed,” but to be fair, at least it was jerks like these who once succeeded in making “Cloverfield” such a smashing comedy. — Sam Eifling

Try the featured Gourmet Burger, Muffaletta and Cuban Sandwiches. GUIDING PRINCIPLES

• Full Service Neighborhood Grocery • Commitment to Local Farmers • Fair and Competitive Pricing • Five Star Customer Service

ArGeNtA MArket

521 Main St. Argenta Arts District 7am to 8pm Mon-Sat, 9am-5pm Sun •

eat local Small Town

support your community • MAY 11, 2011 33

n Juanita’s, the venerable Tex-Mex restaurant and music venue, is leaving the South Main Street location it’s called home since 1986 for the River Market. The move will take Juanita’s to 614 President Clinton, the former home of Bill St. Bar & Grill. It will happen around June 10, according to co-owner Joe Cates. Cates, who co-owns the business with restaurateur Jim O’Brien, said he doesn’t anticipate any core changes in the move. “We’re not shaking the Juanita’s brand. All we’re doing is upgrading the building. Juanita’s is a heritage name. We felt that, in order for the Juanita’s facility to grow, we needed to go to a newer facility. We had to go to something that was more energy efficient.” The decision to move stemmed from a disagreement with landlord Lisa McNeir, whose late husband Frank McGehee opened Juanita’s in 1986. “We talked to her about remodeling the building, and we couldn’t come to terms on who should pay for it,” Cates said. “And it could’ve been four to six months remodeling it, and that would’ve really hurt business.” The future location is two stories. Juanita’s general manager James Snyder said he anticipates the capacity in the upper level will be larger than Juanita’s current music room. “Hopefully, we’ll be able to bring in bigger acts,” he said. The restaurant and venue will be non-smoking, though smoking will be allowed on the patio, Cates and Snyder said. For more details and pictures of the new location, visit Eat Arkansas. n The Underground (formerly The Underground Pub) announced on Monday on its Facebook page that it’s closed after 13 years of business. Scott Harris, who co-owned the River Market restaurant and bar with his sister Sara Harris, said he and his sister had both increasingly gotten involved with side businesses in recent years and finally decided it was time to move on. “Financially, it’s been tough. Business has progressively gone down over the years. At the same time, there wasn’t the money to put back into it to remain viable. That was a little bit of neglect on our part. “It’s been a long, fun run. But there’s no regrets on our part. We feel bad for our employees who’ve been loyal to us over the years that we couldn’t give them more time.” The Underground was located underneath Bosco’s at 500 President Clinton Ave. 34 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

■ dining Dem ribs, dem ribs, dem dry ribs They’re back in the Rock. n Some years back, there was a restaurant on Old Forge Road in West Little Rock that served good dry ribs. Because wet ribs are very much the norm in this neck of the woods, JR’s had a devoted, if small, following up to the time it closed. (Even more years back, before JR’s, there’d been a cafe on Main Street that served dry ribs, which it called “St. Louis-style ribs, ” but that place, whose name we can’t recall, shut down during the period when the lights were going out all over downtown Little Rock.) Since JR’s closed, we’ve had trouble finding dry ribs at all, much less good dry ribs, without going to Memphis, which is famous for them. Some places in central Arkansas don’t even seem to know what dry ribs are — ribs cooked with a dry rub that provides all the seasoning you need, eaten without sauce. There are barbecue establishments whose ribs are pleasurable even when eaten without sauce, but strictly speaking, these are not “dry ribs” unless they have the rub. Shugg’s BBQ Kitchen knows what dry ribs are, and it’s got ’em. Shugg’s opened recently in the River Market Hall, at 400 President Clinton Avenue, a block or so from the Arkansas Times, thereby assuring itself of at least a few steady customers. They’ll probably have a lot more. Even people who aren’t crazy about dry ribs can find something to like here. There are pulled chicken and pulled pork, for example, available either on a sandwich or on a plate. The sandwiches are served either with house-fried potato chips or, for a couple of dollars more, French fries. The chips are the better buy. The pulled meats are meant to be eaten with sauce, and Shugg’s has a selection of five, each with a descriptive label on the bottle — “tangy and spicy,” “thick and sweet,” etc. We had the pulled pork plate one day when no ribs were yet available, and, in all candor, found the meat a little dry, and a little less in quantity than we wanted, dry or no. But a side dish of squash and onions fried together was excellent. The cook said the ingredi-

Restaurant capsules Every effort is made to keep this listing of some of the state’s more notable restaurants current, but we urge readers to call ahead to check on changes on days of operation, hours and special offerings. What follows, because of space limitations, is a partial listing of restaurants reviewed by our staff. Information herein reflects the opinions of the newspaper staff and its reviewers. The newspaper accepts no advertising or other considerations in exchange for reviews, which are conducted anonymously. We invite the opinions of readers who think we are in error. Restaurants are listed in alphabetical order by city; Little Rock-area restaurants are divided by food



THERE’S THE RUB: Shugg’s dry ribs. ents were purchased from Farmers Market vendors. Shugg’s also has a good bakedpotato potato salad, with onions and maybe a bit of sour cream, reminiscent of that at Whole Hog Cafe, and it has a vinegary, peppery cole slaw that we like and that fans of the mayonnaise-y kind probably won’t. Some days, Shugg’s has smoked chicken breast and smoked chicken-leg quarters cooked with the same dry rub that’s on the ribs. You can get a barbecue salad, barbecue potato, and barbecue nachos (tortilla chips, cheese sauce, jalapenos, pulled pork and barbecue sauce). From the sandwich menu hanging above the counter, one of us ordered The Diablo, and found it not especially diabolic. Described as a “huge heap of pulled pork, lettuce, tomato, onion, sour cream, provolone, topped with our TRUE HEAT sauce,” The Diablo proved to be neither as huge nor as hot as our companion had hoped for. Burgers are available too, and if we read that menu right, one of them comes with pulled pork atop the beef patty. We didn’t try it. Did we mention the ribs? The first time we tried them, the spicy flavor brought back a flood of pleasant memories, even category. Other review symbols are: B Breakfast L Lunch D Dinner $ Inexpensive (under $8/person) $$ Moderate ($8-$20/person) $$$ Expensive (over $20/person) CC Accepts credit cards

LITTLE ROCK/ N. LITTLE ROCK AMERICAN 4 SQUARE GIFTS Vegetarian salads, soups, wraps and paninis and a daily selection of desserts in an Arkansas prod-

Shugg’s BBQ Kitchen

400 President Clinton Ave. (River Market Hall) 374-4900 Quick bite

BBQ Salad, BBQ Nachos, BBQ Potato, even a hamburger topped with pulled pork. There are a lot of ways to eat barbecue here, but the dry ribs are the best.


10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Other info

Credit cards accepted, no alcohol. Does catering too.

though the meat was not quite as tender as it might have been. The next time, the ribs were still spicy, and now they were tender and meaty too. We asked a guy behind the counter what went into the dry rub. He wouldn’t tell us. Pepper, paprika, cayenne and other things, probably. Shugg’s is now open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. We were told that it was preparing to experiment with breakfast. ucts gift shop. 405 President Clinton Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-244-2622. L daily. D Mon.-Sat. APPLE SPICE JUNCTION A chain sandwich and salad spot with sit-down lunch space and a vibrant box lunch catering business. With a wide range of options and quick service. Order online via 2000 S. University Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $$. 501-663-7008. ARGENTA MARKET The Argenta District’s neighborhood grocery store offers a deli featuring a daily selection of big sandwiches along with fresh fish and meats and salads. Emphasis here is on Arkansas-farmed foods and organic products. 521 N. Main St. NLR. Beer, Wine, All CC. $-$$. 501-379-9980. BL daily, D Mon.-Sat. ARKANSAS BURGER CO. Good burgers, fries and shakes, plus salads and other entrees. Try the cheese dip. 7410 Cantrell Road. Beer, Wine, All CC. $-$$. 501-663-0600. LD Tue.-Sat. ASHLEY’S The premier fine dining restaurant in Little Rock

CANON GRILL Creative appetizers come in huge quantities, and the varied maincourse menu rarely disappoints, though it’s not as spicy as competitors’. 2811 Kavanaugh Blvd. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-664-2068. LD daily. CAPI’S The eatery has abandoned its previous small plates format for Nuevo Latino cuisine heavy on tamales, enchiladas and Central American reinterpretation of dishes. Fortunately, they kept the great desserts. 11525 Cantrell Suite 917. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-225-9600. LD Tue.-Sun., BR Sat.-Sun. COTIJA’S A branch off the famed La Hacienda family tree downtown, with a massive menu of tasty lunch and dinner specials, the familiar white cheese dip and sweet red and fiery-hot green salsas, and friendly service. 406 S. Louisiana St. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-244-0733. L Mon.-Sat. LA REGIONAL A full-service grocery store catering to SWLR’s Latino community, it’s the small grill tucked away in the back corner that should excite lovers of adventurous cuisine. The menu offers a whirlwind trip through Latin America, with delicacies from all across the Spanish-speaking world (try the El Salvadorian papusas, they’re great). Bring your Spanish/English dictionary. 7414 Baseline Road. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-565-4440. BLD daily. 2630 Pike Ave. NLR. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-246-4163. TAQUERIA KARINA AND CAFE A real Mexican neighborhood cantina from the owners, to freshly baked pan dulce, to Mexican-bottled Cokes, to first-rate guacamole, to inexpensive tacos, burritos, quesadillas and a broad selection of Mexican-style seafood. 5309 W. 65th St. $. 501-562-3951. LD Tue.-Thu.

AROUND ARKANSAS CONWAY BLACKWOOD’S GYROS AND GRILL A wide variety of salads, sandwiches, gyros and burgers dot the menu at this quarter-century veteran of Conway’s downtown district. 803 Harkrider Ave. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. 501-329-3924. LD Mon.-Sat. BOB’S GRILL This popular spot for local diners features a meat-and-two-veg cafeteria style lunch and a decently large made-to-order breakfast menu. Service is friendly. 1112 W. Oak St. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-379-9760. BL Mon.-Sat. FABY’S RESTAURANT Unheralded Mexican-Continental fusion focuses on handmade sauces and tortillas. 1023 Front Street. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $$. 501-513-1199. L daily, D Mon.-Sat. 2915 Dave Ward. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-329-5151. LD Mon.-Sun. GREEN CART DELI Self-billed as “The World’s First Biocompostable Solar-Powered Gourmet Food Cart,” this hot dog stand serves up Sabrett-brand links with all sorts of inventive toppings. Simon Park. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-908-1656. L Mon.-Sat. (open until 5 p.m. usually on Sat.). HOLLY’S COUNTRY COOKING Southern plate lunch specials weekdays. 120 Harkrider. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $. 501-328-9738. L Mon.-Fri.


29 Needing a seat belt extender, say 30 Shore leave taker 33 Collectorsʼ completions 34 Once-common baseball events … and a hint to 16-, 24-, 46- and 57-Across 38 Chicago exchange, for short 39 Absorb thoroughly 40 Agassi of tennis 42 Beat it 43 It borders two Great Lakes: Abbr. 46 Calypso instrument 50 Place secretly 52 Mangy mutt 53 Seeks redress 54 Like Mrs. Bumstead

No. 0403

5 Droids, iPhones, etc. 9 Non-PC computer

13 ___ amandine

14 Language that gave us “kiwi”

15 Roll up, as a sail 16 Thor, for one

18 Michigan college town 19 Porcupine, e.g.

Edited by Will Shortz



1 Kept in a cellar, perhaps


located on JFK in North Little Rock, as the first RV entry into mobile food truck scene. With a broad menu of pizza, calzones, salads and subs. 889 W. 3rd St. No alcohol, No CC. $$. 501-410-0377. L Mon.-Fri. ZAFFINO’S BY NORI A high-quality Italian dining experience. Pastas, entrees (don’t miss the veal marsala) and salads are all outstanding, and the desserts don’t miss, either. 2001 E. Kiehl Ave. NLR. Beer, Wine. 501-834-7530. D Tue.-Sat.

20 Actresses West and Clarke 22 Hosp. areas

23 Creature on a slide 24 Ones often marrying in a hurry 26 Took by the hand

27 My ___, Vietnam











55 Yankee nickname starting in 2004 57 Itʼs undeliverable 59 Extend oneʼs tour 60 “The Waste Land” poet 61 Shape (up) 62 Piedmont city 63 Cold war-era lands: Abbr. 64 Not taken in by Down 1 Kind of projection 2 “Beat it!” 3 Got away from 4 Summer Triangle star 5 Links figure 6 Set of beliefs 7 Like crowds in the heat of a match 8 45 half 9 “___ tree falls …” 10 Yellowstone forager 11 Pair on a couch 12 Business and tourist 14 Shook hands, say 17 Paternity testing locale 21 B.O. sign 24 Bits of cunning 25 “Peer Gynt” playwright 28 Have a bug 30 A capital of Bolivia














24 27




29 31



33 36


22 25


30 34


18 20











42 47

52 55




53 56




54 57








Puzzle by Gareth Bain

31 “Caught you!” 32 Queendom, e.g. 34 Stereotypical glass fillers 35 Not have a home-cooked meal, maybe 36 Wanted-poster abbr.

37 Part of a golf ball 48 Walks like a tosspot 38 It might run in 49 Carrier renamed the rain in 1997 41 Golfʼs Big Easy 51 Pick 6, e.g. 43 Far from demure 54 Short-order 44 Set right

45 Word on many LPs 47 Fancy dressers


56 Print resolution meas. 58 Galas

For answers, call 1-900-285-5656, $1.49 a minute; or, with a credit card, 1-800-814-5554. Annual subscriptions are available for the best of Sunday crosswords from the last 50 years: 1-888-7-ACROSS. AT&T users: Text NYTX to 386 to download puzzles, or visit for more information. Online subscriptions: Todayʼs puzzle and more than 2,000 past puzzles, ($39.95 a year). Share tips: Crosswords for young solvers:

■ UPDATE KIERRE’S KOUNTRY KITCHEN We love a good plate lunch, so we’re always on the lookout for new and/or interesting meat-n-three joints; the places the local, work-a-day blue collar folks cool their heels and scarf down a little grub before heading back to their labors. While we were over in Maumelle the other day, we came across a great one: Kierre’s Kountry Kitchen. Tucked way back off the main drag, across the street from what appears to be a cement factory (headed into Maumelle on Maumelle Boulevard, hang a right by the McDonald’s and look for the signs) Kierre’s doesn’t look like much: a windowless metal warehouse that’s also home to a real-estate office. One look at the full-to-capacity parking lot (with most of the rides being ladder and equipment-laden work trucks) on a recent weekday lunchtime, however, spoke volumes about what to expect inside. This reviewer wasn’t disappointed. In addition to a big menu of diner-rific choices — including a fine slate of breakfast items, well-appointed foot-long chilidogs, 13 different kinds of sandwiches, pork barbeque and the like — Kierre’s is known for its daily plate lunch specials. We tried the very nice Big Lee Burger ($6.39) and our companion went for the Friday-special fried catfish platter ($8.50). We instantly saw the error of our ways when her plate arrived: three meaty fillets, breaded in a light cornmeal coating and served with hush puppies, seasoned fries, brown beans, sweet cole slaw and a whole slice of Vidalia onion. Our burger was great — juicy and thick, with a grilled bun and more of that sweet onion — but the fish was better: fresh, fleshy and tasty. For dessert, we tried the lemon ice box pie and found it similarly good; a homemade slice of heaven which turned out to be something like a cross between lemon pie and cheesecake — firm, flavorful, and topped with sweet whipped cream. In short, if you’re a fan of homestyle chow and happen to be in Maumelle, you could do a heck of a lot worse than Kierre’s. Given the friendly service, changing weekday specials and something-for-everyone menu, we’ll be back for lunch there soon. 6 Collins Industrial Place, Maumelle. All CC, no checks. 501-758-0903. BLD Mon.-Fri.; L Sat. AMERICAN PIE PIZZA (MAUMELLE) Handmade pizza on perfect thin crust with varied toppings, and inexpensive. We liked the olive-oil-based margherita and supreme, plus there are salads, sandwiches and appetizers, all for cheap. 9708 Maumelle Blvd. Maumelle. Beer, Wine, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-758-8800. LD daily. 4830 North Hills Blvd. NLR. Beer, Wine, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-753-0081. LD daily. 10912 Colonel Glenn Road. Beer, Wine, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-225-1900. LD daily. CHEERS IN MAUMELLE 1901 Club Manor Drive. Maumelle. Full bar, All CC. 501-851-6200. LD daily, BR Sun. COCK OF THE WALK Yes, the chicken and shrimp are great, but go for the unbeatable catfish. Plus, we say the slaw is the world’s best, 7051 Cock of the Walk Lane. Maumelle. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-758-7182. D Mon.-Sat., LD Sun. • MAY 11, 2011 37

Get On Board The Arkansas Times Music Bus To The


Thursday August 4

George Jones Rosanne Cash Kris Kristofferson

At The ASU Convocation Center Jonesboro, AR





Price Includes

• Round-Trip Tour Bus Transportation to the Concert •G  eneral Admission Tickets to the Concert •D  inner before the show. • Live Music Enroute. • Keg on Board! Charge by phone (all major credit cards)

501-375-2985. Or mail check or money-order to Arkansas Times Music Bus, Box 34010, Little Rock, AR 72203.

John Carter and Laura Cash Tommy Cash Daily & Vincent Gary Morris Rodney Crowell Chelsea Crowell And Other Artists Still To Be Announced!


A Live Performance by Folksinger Bonnie Montgomery Aboard The Bus

Reserve Your Seat Today! The Arkansas Times Music Bus leaves Little Rock from 2nd & Main (in front of the parking deck) at 3 p.m. Thursday Aug. 4th and will return that night after the concert. We will have dinner in the Jonesboro Arts & Entertainment District, and then head for the concert at 7:30 p.m.

MAY 11, 2011



hen you think Gangster Museum, you might not think hattery, but Robert Raines, director of The Gangster Museum in Hot Springs, is out to change all that. Now settled into its new location at 510 Central Ave., the museum and its gift shop, which Raines also refers to as The Hattery, boasts an impressive selection of hats. And they’re selling like gangbusters. “We sold 15 on Friday,” he enthuses. Raines attributes this selling streak, in part, to shows like “Boardwalk Empire,” the HBO drama set in 1920s Atlantic City. He stresses that these are “not tourist hats,” meaning baseball caps and the like, but high-quality chapeaux. Their offerings are for both guys and dolls and include the

ever-popular fedora, wide-brimmed hats, Ivys, Sinatras and Panamas. The Ivy, the brimless, snap-billed variety that Brad Pitt favors, and the Sinatra, which is worn kicked back on the head, Rat Pack style, are favorites. Before they started selling hats, Raines says that the closest hattery was Meyer the Hatter in New Orleans. Before placing their first order, Raines consulted Meyer. “He knew what the trends were and the vendors to contact, like Bailey’s of Hollywood. We were leaning towards a gangster style anyway ... and it was just a right place, right time kind of thing,” says Raines. Asked if he’s a hat-wearer himself, Raines exclaims, “I got one of everything!”

hearsay ➥ Get your goat. Artist Eleanor Dickinson confirms that she is opening a store, THE WHITE GOAT, with sister-in-law Anna Dickinson in the space formerly occupied by Pflugrad’s Antiques. “Planning this has definitely been an adventure,” says Eleanor. “We open around September 1st. We’re really looking forward to this; it’s right up our alley: European antiques/reproductions, all light-painted furniture and accessories, rural and formal together. It’s going to be really cool.” ➥ Jewelry for a cause. Proceeds from the “Speak” necklace by Dawanna Young, a Northwest Arkansas jewelry designer living in Nashville, Tenn., benefit Autism Speaks. This sterling silver puzzle piece with hand carved lettering on one side and embossed design on the other is available exclusively at M2 GALLERY. ➥ Mac attack. MAC Cosmetic lovers rejoice! On May 26 the new summer collection arrives at DILLARD’S. ➥ Achtung! If you like pared-down German chic, you won’t want to miss the Strenesse Fall 2011 Trunk Show at B. BARNETT, May 17-18. ➥ All hands on deck. It’s a busy week at KITCHEN CO.: French Cooking with Julia Childs Recipes, Aaron Walters, May 12, 6-8 p.m.; Grilled Eggplant Parmesan, Baby Blue Salad and German Chocolate Pie with Karol Zoeller, May 13, 6-8 p.m.; Hands-on Pizza Class with Aaron Walters, May 14, 6-8 p.m.; Hands-on Italian Sauces with Brandon Douglas, May 16,; Hands-on Sushi with Aaron Walters, May 17. ➥ All up in your grill. EGGSHELLS again opens its doors May 19, 5-7 p.m., for Happy Hour in the Heights. This time the theme is Grill Sauces. You’ll be able to sample a variety of

sauces to get you ready for Memorial Day and summer grilling. As always, there will be drinks available for you to enjoy while shopping. (This is a free event.) You snooze, you lose—Pies with Tandra Watkins, May 23, is already SOLD OUT! ➥ HAM it up. On 2nd Friday Art Night at HISTORIC ARKANSAS MUSEUM, celebrate the opening of the Mid-Southern Watercolorists’ 41st Annual Exhibition. Opening reception May 13, 5-8 p.m., music by Mare Carmody and Friends. Exhibit continues through August 7. ➥ Where art and architecture meet. Also on 2nd Friday Art Night, May 13, 5-8 p.m., check out the work of Jeff Horton and Gabriel Griffith at HERRON HORTON ARCHITECTS, 1219 S. Spring St. ➥ The natural state. Be green, pamper yourself and support local artisans when you buy naturally made bath and body products from the MUSEUM STORE AT HISTORIC ARKANSAS MUSEUM. Two popular products include: Naturals Herbal Offerings Lime, Lavender, and Wheat Grass soap and Maison Terre Eucalyptus Forest salt bath. ➥ Happy 19th Birthday, REJUVENATION CLINIC! (You don’t look a day over 18.) ➥ Planting ideas, growing minds. Do not miss Music in the Garden, an event for the whole family! Bring a picnic supper for an evening of fun and live music in the relaxed setting of the DUNBAR COMMUNITY AND SCHOOL GARDEN at 18th and Chester. Tour the garden, visit with the goats, check out the chickens and learn about honey bees. Each Thursday in May features a different musical talent. This week, May 12, Bonnie Montgomery and Rychy St. Vincent entertain from 5:30-7 p.m. ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO THE ARKANSAS TIMES • MAY 11, 2011 39



Take yourself back back Take yourself to the days of days the of the to the 20’s, 30’s and30’s and 20’s, 40’s when 40’smineral when mineral water, gambling, water, gambling, bootlegging and bootlegging and other extreme other extreme pleasures broughtbrought pleasures from allfrom overall over visitors greAt selection of visitors men’s And the world Hot to Hot theto world women’s fedorAs, ivys And Springs,Springs, Ark. Ark.

top hAts in hot springs


ome are self-described “hat people,” while others think they can’t pull off the look. But here’s a newsflash: With all the styles available now, anyone can (and should) wear hats! De rigueur back in the day, headwear is making a comeback in a big way. You’re sure to flip for these lids.

“Great“Great Books,Books, Hats and History” Hats and History” 510 Central HotAve., Springs, 71901AR • 501-318-1717 • 510Ave., Central HotAR Springs, 71901 • 501-318-1717 •

The To-do lisT

➤➤➤ The comprehensive list of everything worth doing this weekend from Times entertainment editor, Lindsey Millar. Whether it’s live music, dance, theater or an exhibit, Lindsey steers you to the best. The To-Do List email newsletter arrives in your in-box every Wednesday afternoon with an eye toward planning for your weekend. The To-Do List is a sure bet for your active life!

Classic straw fedora with band — straight from a spree in Buenos Aires.






for thiS iT’s Free! SubScribe local newS email! Go To ArkTimes.Com S U B S C R I B E









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ARKANSAS TIMES 40 MAY 11, 2011 • ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO THE • Lske kci Lor autatincil dolutpat. Andre dunt utpat. ARKANSASBLOG • Lor autatincil dolutpat. Andre dunt utpat. • Lor autatincil dolutpat. Andre dunt utpat.

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ATX Mafia Co. A bit of Austin, Texas, cool, $48. VESTA’S

Navy, side buckle cap from San Diego Hat Co., $35. (Other colors available.) BOX TURTLE

2616 Kavanaugh Blvd. • Little Rock 501.661.1167 •

Multi-color fine braid floppy hat from San Diego Hat Co., $62. BOX TURTLE Friday, May 13, 6-9pm Runaway Planet To Perform M2 Gallery Pleasant Ridge Town Center

Have a Worry Free vacatioN!

try Gel PolisH sHellac

14 Day Wear • No Chipping No Smudge •Zero Dry Time Mirror Finish Mon-Sat 9am-6:30pm • Sun 12pm-5pm

Large brim, brown and teal ribbon braid hat from San Diego Hat Co., $33. BOX TURTLE

Nail Paradise 11321 W. Markham, Ste. 5 Little Rock, AR 72211 501.225.2228


Green cowboy hat from San Diego Hat Company, $27. VESTA’S

Some men have an even greater risk, and that is why we recommend that every man be screened to establish a baseline Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) score at the age of 40. Is a prostate cancer screening right for you? Before you can decide, you need to know the facts. Don’t miss your opportunity to speak with health professionals and learn more about prostate cancer. Free prostate cancer screenings will be provided by the Arkansas Prostate Cancer Foundation (APCF). Get the knowledge you need for your health and the health of your family! Visit us at the screening! For more information, call 1-800-338-1383 or visit





SHEILA JONES 501-413-1950


Hats: A brief reflection Me in my first hat in 1971. BY KATHERINE WYRICK


am a life-long hat wearer—in babyhood I donned a puffy bonnet worthy of the Victorians; in adolescence I experimented (unsuccessfully) with a beret worn at a jaunty angle. Now, in adulthood, I’ve been known to wear anything from a trucker cap to a cloche. Putting on a hat is a transformative act, sometimes bold, sometimes subtle, but one that allows you, for a time, to try on a different persona—and maybe even perspective. That’s why I’m proclaiming 2011 the new heyday of the hat! Hope you find one, or more, on the previous pages that suits you.


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My grandmother, Kitty, in hat with veil circa 1930.

Head west for a not-to-miss show at M2 Gallery

t’s been two years since M2 Gallery brought the artwork of Tim West to the public, and now they’re bringing it back in a big way with “Westland: The Life and Art of Tim West,” which features artwork by Tim West and photography by Diana Michelle Hausam. The exhibit will open Friday, May 13 from 6-9 p.m., with an artist talk scheduled on Saturday, May 14 from 2-4 p.m. “Westland,” like its predecessor “The Artist” (2009), will feature the artwork of the reclusive 74-year-old Winslow resident and the photography of Diana Michelle Hausam, who has been documenting West’s life through photography and film over the last several years. “The combination of Tim’s artwork with Diana’s photography is spectacular,” enthuses Mac Murphy, owner of M2 Gallery. “It really gives the viewer a way to connect with who Tim is, and where his art comes from.” Murphy continues, “This show will be one of the largest shows we’ve had at M2 Gallery. The first show featuring these two was tremendously successful, and since then, everyone has been falling in love with the story of Tim, his artwork, and the beautiful way in which Diana has captured his personality and surroundings through her photography.” West, who had an etching accepted into the permanent collection of MOMA at the age of 19 and who received his MFA from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale in the early 1960s, has spent much of his life creating but not displaying or showing his artwork to the public.  Several years ago, a chance meeting changed that when Hausam drove past his property and noticed a fence made of bicycles. She wanted to photograph it and left a note on the gate. Soon afterward, she received a letter in the mail from Tim instructing her to come back on a specified day and honk her horn. She did. Upon her arrival, West emerged from the woods, and Hausam was hit with a revelation. “It was immediately apparent that he was my subject,” she says. Soon after, West began showing his artwork to


Sketch of woman in chapeau from Roy Dudley Estate Sale.

Photo of West by Diana Michelle Hausam Hausam. Since that time, M2 Gallery has been representing the work of both Hausam and West.  West, whose life has taken a much different course than most, is pleased with the overwhelming response to his artwork. “I just figured I’d be dead 10 years before anyone would ever even notice my art,” he says. Currently, Hausam is filming “Westland,” a documentary about West.  Film crews will be at the opening of the show and at the artist talk to film West and his growing number of patrons and fans.   For more information, visit or www.facebook. com/timwestart or contact Mac Murphy at M2 Gallery at (501) 225-M2LR or The show will hang through June 18, 2011.

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2nd Friday art night over 50 artists will be represented in over 13 downtown locations. hop on trolley 1 which will circle the River market Loop and drops off at Lafayette and Lulav (both on 6th st.). then hop on trolley 2 and enjoy the south main street Loop, which returns to Lafayette and Lulav to get back on trolley 1. FREE PARKING at hIstoRIc ARKANsAs musEum, 3RD & cumBERLAND. FREE stREEt PARKING ALL oVER DoWNtoWN AND BEhIND thE RIVER mARKEt (Paid parking available for modest fee.)

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trolleys sponsored by • MAY 11, 2011 43


Vegetarian dining in Central Arkansas I t wasn’t that long ago when Times readers voted Dixie Cafe best vegetarian restaurant in the Best of Arkansas poll. We love a “Vegetable Heaven” plate as much as the next Southerner, but it goes to show just how limited the options for vegetarians were in Central Arkansas just a few years ago. Thankfully, things have changed. With ever-increasing frequency, Arkansas eateries are making wellexecuted, delicious, meat-free dishes. Below, we offer a jumping off point for vegetarians, vegans and people who just like good food that happens to be meat-free. 4Square Cafe & Gifts This restaurant is ideal if you work downtown and are looking for something light and healthy. We usually opt for the soup du jour and the tofu hummus wrap, 44 MAY 11, 2011 • ARKANSAS TIMES

which is filling and bold thanks to the Kalamata olive spread inside. Chips, a limp pickle spear and other traditional sides don’t come with the sandwiches and wraps, which is a plus, since you’ll want to save room for dessert. Options range from hand-dipped Yarnell’s ice cream to baked sweets to cookies, pie, and cake. Everything is vegetarian. 405 President Clinton Ave. 244-2622. CC. No alcohol. 9:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Mon.-Thu., 9:30 a.m.-9 p.m. Fri., 10:30 a.m.- 4 p.m. Sun.

Argenta Market You’ll find a wealth of products from Arkansas here to make homemade meat-free meals at home, including a good variety of produce. The bread and pastry case is filled with goodies from Boulevard Bread Co. and Community Bakery, a convenience for those who live on the north side of the

river. The deli in the back of the market offers a fine portabella sandwich, but it’s the deluxe grilled cheese sandwich with melted Colby and cheddar cheese, served with a sublime roasted tomato-onion jam, that truly stands out. Excellent house-made potato chips come on the side. 521 Main St., North Little Rock. 379-9980. CC. Beer and wine. 7 a.m.-8 p.m. Mon.-Sat., 7 a.m.-8 p.m., 9 a.m. Sun.

Bangkok Thai An oasis in the Central Arkansas Thai restaurant desert, this stall inside the River Market’s Ottenheimer Hall offers all your basic Thai staples done well. A favorite entree is the pad kra pao, a stir-fry with bell pepper, carrots, onion, tofu and lots of basil, served on a bed of rice. The food is prepared to order, which is a good thing, but don’t visit if you are

in a hurry. Most, not all, items can be made without meat and tofu substituted. 400 President Clinton Ave. 3745105. CC. No alcohol. 10:30 am- 4:30 p.m. Mon.-Sat. Cafe Bossa Nova This Brazilian cafe features an entire section on its menu for vegetarians and vegans. It’s hard to go wrong with the arroz com feijao (black beans and rice). It’s a simple dish, done right. You’ll also find salads here made with fresh greens, fruit and nuts. Try to save room for dessert. The cafe’s tres leites, rice pudding and bread pudding are all recommended. You’ll find pastries and bread and some of the best coffee in town at the restaurant’s bakery next door, Rosalia’s. 2701 Kavanaugh Blvd. 614-6682. CC. Full bar. 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Tue.-Sat.; 10:30 a.m.- 2 p.m. Sun.







4SQUARE Delicious Temptations One of the first places to get a vegetarian sandwich in town, Delicious Temptations still serves several strong ones, especially The Grasshopper —spinach, avocado, tomato, purple onion, provolone, sprouts and house dressing. We’re fond of breakfast, too. A notable dish is the Nest Egg, a scramble with mushrooms, onions, bell pepper, and zucchini on a whole wheat pita, topped with black olives, tomatoes and sour cream. We hold the eggs Benedict in high regard, too. And always appreciate the little touches, like housemade strawberry butter that comes standard with your croissant. 11220 N Rodney Parham Road, 225-6893. CC. No alcohol. 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m. daily. Green Cuisine This food truck parked in the fenced lot at 6th and Chester exclusively serves vegetarian fare. Find daily specials via Twitter (@grncuisine) and Facebook ( Regular items worth mentioning include the Philly portabella sub, the bleu cheese mac and cheese, and the sweet potato slaw. It’s worth getting the meal deal, which includes a drink and a side. If you call ahead, Green Cuisine will bring it out to your car. Corner of 6th and Chester. 454-7555. No alcohol. CC. 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Mon.-Fri. Jimmy’s Serious Sandwiches Go for The Garden, Jimmy’s spectacular veggie sandwich. It’s three melted cheeses, mushrooms, sunflower seeds, sprouts and spinach salad sandwich spread, served on pumpernickel bread — a sandwich befitting the restaurant’s name. Jimmy’s raspberry-lemon zinger iced tea and lemon squares are also recommended. 5116 W. Markham St. 666-3354. CC. No alcohol.11 a.m.-4 p.m. Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Sat. Layla’s “Got me on my knees, Layla’s!” we can’t help singing every time we come here. Because, well, for starters,

the baba ghannouj is the best on the planet. Eat it as a meal. Also, the lentil soup is a light, simple medley and the falafel, served with creamy and tart tzatziki, is a crispy, filling delight. We’ve never had a bad visit, and there aren’t many other restaurants we can say that about. 9501 N Rodney Parham. CC. No alcohol. 227-7272. 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Mon.Thu., 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Fri.-Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. Star of India Where Sami knows your name! The friendly owner is also sensitive to vegetarians. He’s steered us away from dishes we wouldn’t have thought included meat in the past. Go for the daily lunch buffet, 11 a.m.-2:45 p.m., if you’ve got a big appetite. And try the daal soup. It’s savory, spicy and delicious. 301 N Shackleford Road. 2279900. CC. Beer and wine.11 a.m.-2:45 p.m., 5 p.m.-10 p.m. Mon.-Thu., Sun.; 11 a.m.-2:45 p.m., 5 p.m.-10:30 p.m. Fri.-Sat. Veggi Deli Located inside the massive ethnic market Asian Groceries, this small deli offers a Western Indian, Gujaratistyle vegetarian menu that’s as delicious as it is cheap. Different from other Indian food in town, the menu might be overwhelming to newcomers, but adventurers will be rewarded. The ragdo samosa and the chat papadi each come highly recommended. 9112 Rodney Parham Road. 221-9977. CC. No alcohol. 10:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Tue.-Sun. ZaZa Here you’ll find the best salad bars in Central Arkansas. The meat in any of the menu salads can be substituted out and of course you can make your own creation. Plus, there are endless toppings available for wood-oven pizza and authentic gelato for dessert. 5600 Kavanaugh Blvd. 661-9292. CC. Beer, wine, margaritas. 10:30 a.m.-9 p.m. Mon.-Thu., 10:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Fri.-Sat.; 10:30 a.m.-9 p.m. Sun.




drink local

support your community • MAY 11, 2011 45

Where it’s due n The debate at the House of Dominoes the other day was over who should get the credit. There was general agreement over who shouldn’t get it. That would be the man who gave the whack order, the man given the credit in most other quarters, including from Darth Cheney himself. Nothing against that man. Well, one thing against him. I arrived when the discussion was just heating up. Seg Now was saying, “How about if we give the credit to the Unknown Soldier from the tomb of the same name?” The proposal received a respectful mulling before Rojo Cuello ruled on it. “We can’t do that, Seg,” he said. “Because they’s one thing we do know about the Unknown Soldier and that is, he’s dead. And whoever kilt Ben Loddin idn’t dead. We’d be giving credit where it’s not due.” “Instead of not giving credit where it is due,” Perro Amarillo said. “Which is y’allses current order of business here in Snooker Valhalla, it sounds like” “Well, I’d rather see somebody’s that’s dead get it than a [N-word],” Seg Now said. Perro Amarillo sighed and said, “A real enlightened attitude, Seg. Why don’t we adjourn now and go burn a cross in somebody’s yard?” “I never seen the point of that,” Seg said. “Often as not, a half-burnt cross just

Bob L ancaster

improves their yard’s appearance. Like giving them another pink flamingo or plywood bent-over fat woman.” Seg Now’s twin brother Seg Forever said, “I’d vote a’gin giving the [N-word] credit too. Course I wouldn’t give it to Bush, neither, and if I had to choose between ‘em, I wouldn’t know whether to [s-word] or go blind.” Rojo Cuello said to Perro Amarillo, “Look around you, Bud. This here’s Arkansas. We would’ve voted Faubus king for life if he would’ve run for it. And you know the color of why.” “That was a long time ago, R.C.,” P.A. said. “All right, then, what about our No. 2 man in Little Rock right this minute? He’s asking God on his website to bump off the [N-word] president just because he’s a [Nword].” “Who done that?” somebody [not clear in my notes] said. “Our lieutenant governor,” I interjected to clarify. “[F-bomb]er said it was just a joke

he was passing along. He didn’t try to take credit for it, which was either real good of him or real bad.” “It was mighty white of him anyhow,” R.C. said. “Look at our last two elections,” the Seg boys’ knotty little old nephew said. “The reason birds like that are in there is because Republicans has give us to know they hate [N-word]s. We vote against Democrats because they either love [N-word]s or they have to say they do because it’s part of their program. All of this is did in code, but it’s did.” “Yeah, it’s did. I have to give you that,” I conceded. “Well, I don’t,” P.A. said. “If this is what we’ve come to in this country after two hundred years of steady decline, God help us.” “No,” I reminded him, “He only helps them that help theirselves.” “None of this yahoo bunch would even help theirselves to pie,” he said. “Long as it was Karo nut, I would,” Seg Now said. P.A. rolled his eyes and said, “Cripes, you can’t even insult them.” “I heard ol’ Limbo on the reddio and he thinks he ought to get the credit,” R.C. said. “He would,” P.A. said. “I seen ol’ Huckabee on TV and looked like he was wanting credit too,” Day Late said. “And the re-ward, if they is one.” “Yeah, they’s one,” his running buddy Dollar Short said. “I seen the dead-or-alive


wanted poster. It started out at something like $50 million, and gradually sunk down to $312.50.” “He’ll get his claim in, then,” Day Late said, talking about Huckabee. “He won’t never be second in no line of them what has their hand out.” The old boy called Pious said, “I think Jesus Christ ought to get the credit. He’s the one inspired all of this.” “Do what, Pious?” I queried, incredulous. “Well, No. 1, He’s the one said vengenance is mine, and if he wadn’t lying, then this is his handiwork. No 2., He’s the one said a eye for a eye, and you probably noticed where it was Ben Loddin was shot. No. 3, He’s the one said turn the other cheek. But what he went on to say, and they didn’t report this part, was while you’re turning that other cheek to the [f-bomb]er that smit your first one, you can go ahead and blow his[f-bomb]ing [a-word] off.” “That’s not what He says in my Bible,” the old boy called Deacon said. “You need to read Matthew 6:38-48, Pious.” “I used to read,” Pious said, “but you don’t have to anymore. You can get it all on Fox.” “Well, take my word,” Deacon said. “It don’t say nothing positive about murdering murderers, or murdering anybody, or just coldcocking them. And then having some kind of strutting-around, we-bad party when you do.”



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