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C I T Y W E E K LY. N E T

MARCH 28, 2019 | VOL. 35

Their health on standby, thousands of low-income Utahns await to see if they’ll benefit from Medicaid expansion.

By Kela n

N0. 44

Lyons

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CWCONTENTS COVER STORY DIAGNOSIS UNCERTAIN

Low-income Utahns left in the wake of Senate Bill 96 are waiting to see if they’ll benefit from state’s Medicaid expansion. Cover illustration by Derek Carlisle

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CONTRIBUTOR

4 LETTERS 6 OPINION 11 NEWS 16 A&E 21 DINE 25 MUSIC 35 CINEMA 37 COMMUNITY

CADEN MARK GARDNER Cinema, p. 35 “There will be many anniversary pieces on The Matrix,” he says, “but it is important to center on the people who created the film that became a groundbreaking blockbuster, and to consider that they were trans women.” Gardner is co-authoring the forthcoming book Corpses, Fools & Monsters: An Examination of Transgender Cinema with fellow film critic Willow Maclay.

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Cover story, March 14, Local Music Issue

Dang! I had one of those tape recorders when I was younger. It was amazing. Wish I still had it. @GERADEMUSIC Via Instagram

News, March 14, “Double Take: Senatorturned SLC mayoral candidate Jim Dabakis raises eyebrows with KUTV alignment”

Left Channel 2 when it changed owners, I can’t support the Sinclair group. Sorry Jim, I’m not sure I could stomach [Greg] Hughes even if you two were on another channel. CATHERINE MATTHEWS Via Facebook Terrible choice, Jim. DAVID EKENSTAM Via Facebook

Opinion, March 14, “Trumpty Dumpty”

Mr. Robinson is right on in his comments about Trumpty. Last year, I, too, even came up with a Humpty Dumpty Trumpty poem. Great minds work together, eh! Or maybe we vets share the same concerns about our Democracy and Constitution. The comments about the Utah delegation as well as

other Republicans are spot on, too! Their lack of support for upholding our Constitution is appalling showing just what they are—spineless, subterranean trolls, with no regard or moral values to represent their constituency or their Oath of Office in Congress. Most appalling, as a vet, is the outrageous stance of Chris Stewart, a former USAF pilot, who at that time served to protect the U.S. and its democracy. Where did his values go? Trumpty, who gave away classified materials to the Russians, is guilty of treason and is a traitor to the nation. And I for one, consider all other Republicans who side with him are guilty the same as he is by complicity in his policies. Such weak spineless representatives in the government deserve no place in our democracy to represent us or the nation. So, I applaud Mr. Robinson’s opinion as he is correct and minces no words about Trumpty Dumpty. DON DUFF, Salt Lake City

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I don’t follow the MCU but the Thanos thing is a major thing that makes me wonder if these people ever even rewatch movies. People still rewatch stuff even knowing what happens, and still can react emotionally to it. @HULITHERIUM Via Twitter Completely agree with everything [author Bryan Young] said. I don’t know about other people, but for me just the image of Peter Parker disintegrating into thin air, whether I knew he was coming back or not, absolutely rocked me to my core and Tony’s expressions hit just as hard. BRENDAN MURPHY Via Twitter I like how [the author] calls out that a subset of movie goers are meta-watching a film instead of just watching it. It’s a little like going to a magic show and complaining that the woman didn’t really get sawed in half.

JASON MCBRIDE Via Twitter

Online news post, A&E, March 14, “On Its March 15, “Utah’s Bright and Shining Own Terms: The problem with a movie fandom Future” school is all the that can’t accept stories Missing kids are thinking as you all drove your entitled, overfor what they are” Truth! RON PETERSON Via Facebook

sized autos across town. DONNA MARIE SARGENT Via Facebook

Just an excuse to cut class. CRAIG SCHROERLUCKE Via Facebook Programmed robots. JAMES BERCAW Via Facebook Climate change is coming sooner than you think! Spring is right around the corner. RODGER HACKER Via Facebook

Didn’t pay Utah state taxes for kids to skip school and protest our political leaders ... Having difficulties with climate change? Buy electric, no emissions cars ... stay in school ... science, math, language arts. CHRISTINE COHEN Via Facebook

Online news post, March 16, “This is the

End, My Friend”

You’re right. It is the end. For you! DIANE ARMSTRONG Via Facebook Nice reference to The Doors. STEVE DACARIA Via Facebook We encourage you to join the conversation. Sound off across our social media channels as well as on cityweekly.net for a chance to be featured in this section.


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OPINION

Chastity Belts: The Latest Fashion Craze?

I know this was not the news Utah women were breathlessly waiting for, but chastity belts will be one of the prime topics for the next Utah legislative session. Uncomfortable as these devices are reported to be, the proposed legislation—sponsored by GOP Rep. Brigham Smith Young and supported by Gov. Gary Herbert—will cement the essential understanding that a woman’s body does not belong to her; it is the sole property of the designated man in charge. Naturally, legislators are already busily renting prominent storefronts for the highly-profitable fashion businesses which will surely follow. And, with solemn dedication to the morals of the community, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will insist that it has the last word on the product designs, embossing each with the familiar motto, “Choose the Right,” and adding the chastity belt as an official accessory to the special underwear. If you’re finding yourself gasping for air, you need to remember: It wasn’t so long ago that the chastity belt was applauded as the year’s greatest invention. A man named Noah O’Penn was actually awarded what was the equivalent of today’s Nobel Prize for Engineering, and the devices became the latest rage.

BY MICHAEL S. ROBINSON SR. Chastity belts were eagerly employed by gallant knights to ensure that their women would be faithful during their often years-long Crusade absences, while they dutifully (and gleefully) hacked to death those Muslims who dared to claim their right to the shared sacred sites of Christianity. Uncomfortable as a lockable iron belt must have been, keeping the women from frolicking with other men—and even themselves—was certainly a reasonable justification. A woman’s worst nightmare was that the man with the key might never return. Along with the instructions for the chastity belt’s use was a super-sharp dagger, complete with a “do it yourself” anatomical diagram of where the distraught wife should plunge it. The re-introduction of chastity belts was so shocking to me that I called up Herbert to get his take on it. He agreed to meet me at the Temple Square Visitors’ Center. When we shook hands, he had a broad smile, immediately gushing, “Isn’t it great; these things are going to be the best thing since sliced bread.” His rather flippant assertion made me acutely uncomfortable, but I took a deep breath and gently chided him. “It’s a step backward,” I noted, “something better left to the history books.” Then I went on—how these terrible devices disappeared during the Middle Ages, but Herbert turned to me and responded, “Oh, yes, I realize that the idea is archaic, but chastity belts were both functional and fashionable. It’s never too late to revive a great idea.” I looked at him in disbelief. “Gary, you can’t be serious!” But the governor made himself clear. “Women can’t be left to their own decisions; we all know that their minds are incapable of reason; it would destroy our state.” He was so fervent in the way he said it, I couldn’t even protest, but nodded faintly in respectful acquiescence. For the naive Utah flock, the reality of women as property

is easily embraced. Let’s face it, they can’t even be Celestialized without their man, and unwed women are still deemed spinsters, second rate and second class to their elevated male counterparts. While a woman can sweetly hold her man, the priesthood is far beyond her reach. And, as a bonus for the believer—and consistent with other Middle-aged state laws, Utah still maintains that a spouse is, simply, property. (That is affirmed in the Utah courts which still honor the tort claim of “alienation of affection,” for which a person can be sued for stealing another’s spouse.) Now I’m feeling guilty. Yup, I lied. The stuff about reintroduction of chastity belts was totally fictional. On the other hand, the Legislature’s (and governor’s) firm grip on a woman’s genitals and reproductive system is very much a reality. In partnership with the predominant religion, the state has usurped the autonomy of every Utah woman, including but not restricted to: 1. The prerogative to choose to terminate a pregnancy, particularly one which would end with a genetically damaged child, and 2. The right to flee an abusive marriage with a savior-knight in shining armor, and not having that new man face legal punishment by the ex for the act of giving that muchneeded love. At least Utah’s women know what to expect. The crusaders hold the sacred key to that belt, and the rights of women—no matter how hard they might scream—will likely continue to be trampled. Utah women, be heard! You can quote the slogan, “Life Elevated,” all day long, but it’s going to be one hell of a climb. CW

The author is a former Vietnam-era Army assistant public information officer. He resides in Riverton with his wife, Carol, and one mongrel dog. Send feedback to comments@cityweekly.net


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Nothing’s done until it’s done. That’s why it’s so important to show up at the Utah Inland Port Public Forum to find out more about the secretive and problematic economic engine brought to you by your Legislature. Come share your thoughts about how Salt Lake City’s fragile Northwest Quadrant should—or shouldn’t—be developed. Already, there’s a massive airport expansion and a new state prison being built. How much more pollution and traffic can the area handle, especially near the wetlands and the endangered Great Salt Lake? Salt Lake County Council Chambers, 2001 S. State, Room N1100, Thursday, March 28, 6-8 p.m., free, bit.ly/2TnNJVC.

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With the president and his administration kindling deep-seated feelings of fear around the Muslim community, it’s time to find out what you’re so afraid of. At Muslims for American Progress: An Evidenced-Based Portrait of American Muslims, you discover how they are rarely portrayed as nuanced and complex human beings, and that most Americans say they don’t know a Muslim personally. You can hear personal stories and hard facts so you can decide for yourself. On that personal level, you might also want to hear Building a Community Around SelfReliance and Trust. Samira Harnish of the group Women of the World talks about the best ways to bring together self-reliant, displaced women and their new communities. Muslim Portrait: Jewett Center for the Performing Arts at Westminster College 1840 S. 1300 East, Tuesday, April 2, 7-8:30 p.m., free, bit.ly/2Y90lUt. Harnish: Hinckley Caucus Room, 260 S. Central Campus Drive, Room 2018, Thursday, March 28, 12:30-1:30 p.m., free, bit.ly/2To8elf.

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Forget the three statewide initiatives that legislators eviscerated. Local initiatives are faring no better. Here comes Rep. Brad Daw, R-Orem, with his HB119—his reborn anti-initiative law—according to the Deseret News. He started last year with a failed attempt to silence opponents of the Provo-Orem rapid transit project. Since then, there’s been the Cottonwood Mall development fight and before that, the successful Sevier County coal-fired plant initiative. Those damned citizens are just trying to stop development, and you know what that means to a legislator’s pocketbook. Whatever, the bill passed to “clarify” the law with 2,368 lines of gobbledygook. If anything, it will make it more difficult and likely much more expensive to pass a local citizen initiative.

FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT WWW.LWVUTAH.ORG

For the Kids

Utah continues to believe that we have to save unborn babies from their murderous mothers. After all, given half a chance, mothers will kill their babies in the most heinous and unfeeling way—because, of course, killing something in one’s womb is just easypeezy. No harm, no foul. Women don’t think twice, certainly don’t understand the implications, and someone—mostly men in charge—have to save them from themselves. So a big thanks goes out to Gov. Gary Herbert for signing into law a ban on aborting Down syndrome babies, like that’s a thing. It’s probably unconstitutional and won’t go into effect until the court rules, according to KSL Channel 5. The other bill set legal abortions back from about 20 to 18 weeks, but at press time, it was unclear what Herbert would do. His decision is a lot easier than that of a pregnant woman.

Feeling Neighborly

While the nation awaits any real immigration reform from Congress, instead, each state must decide how to respond to the human tragedies of refugees and undocumented immigrants seeking respite in the United States. “[P]olitics overshadow important policy decisions,” Salt Lake Chamber President and CEO Derek Miller told The Salt Lake Tribune. So, it’s significant that Utah has renewed its support of the Utah Compact, a document signed by faith, business, elected, education and community leaders to support immigrant populations in the state. No, the Latter-day Saints didn’t exactly sign on, but said they support it—whatever that means. Comments on the Trib site questioned why the LDS church was so ambivalent, and whether it was fear of President Donald Trump. The real question is whether other states will adopt the compact, with or without LDS support.

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NEWS

ENVIRONMENT

Missing Metals

BERNARD SPRAGG VIA WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

Utah’s search for Gold King Mine waste in Lake Powell raises questions about the role of politics in science. BY EMMA PENROD comments@cityweekly.net @emapen

I

The state is seeking $1.9 billion in damages—the amount the Utah attorney general believes it would cost to locate and remove the metals, thought to be buried in the sediment beneath Lake Powell.

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MARCH 28, 2019 | 11

against the EPA’s request to have the case tossed. Given the slow progress, the Utah Attorney General’s Office doesn’t expect the case to go to trial for at least three years, and the Lake Powell study is slated for completion in 2020—giving plenty of time for the results to make their way into the legal proceedings. Erica Gaddis, director of the Utah Division of Water Quality, says the Attorney General’s Office has reached out to her division with technical questions, but she doesn’t believe the state’s lawsuit is what triggered the sediment survey. Rather, the Gold King Mine incident itself shone a spotlight on a longstanding problem, which convinced Congress to release the funds that the EPA chose to dedicate to the study. The study, she says, is intended solely to determine how much mine waste is buried in Lake Powell, whether the trend is toward an increased contamination, and whether the sediment is likely to stay there. If Utah’s political leaders are looking for cut-and-dry answers, scientific study isn’t likely to produce them, Hynek says. Geology, he adds, deals with raw numbers. Testing the sediment will tell us how much mine waste has collected in Lake Powell—it might even locate the metals released in 2015—but it won’t answer the legal question of whether someone ought to spend billions of dollars to do something about it. “There are times when you get results and say, ‘Oh, there is nothing here,’ and there are times when you say, ‘Whoa, this is really high,” he says. “But most of the cases aren’t really clear cut. A lot of that is how you frame it—what risks are acceptable to society, and at what cost.” CW

eaten by fish, it allows contamination— especially heavy metals—to move up the food chain. And then there’s the question of Lake Powell’s variable water levels, and whether the sediment in the lake’s northernmost reaches is likely to stay put. “As the lake level goes up and down— this is tens of meters in either direction—that sediment that was once underwater is exposed to the atmosphere [until] the river undercuts it,” Hynek says. “The sediment in this delta is quite dynamic. The fact is that it could be deposited under water and two years later be above water. A lot of these prior events are continually being redeposited.” All good reasons, Mesner says, for a reputable organization like the USGS to undertake a study. “They are not what I would consider agenda driven,” she says, and the state’s desire for more data is a prudent one. As for the USGS—money to study an issue as localized and specific as mine contamination in Lake Powell doesn’t exactly grow on trees. “If money became available, they would be foolish not [to take it], because it’s so rare,” Mesner says. This is the way science works at times, Mesner says: Sometimes funding for a project is tied to a political agenda, but researchers try to move forward without letting that sway the work. “I’ve been involved in all sorts of data collection where you’ve got people screaming at each other,” she says. “Those of us on the ground, we just go out and do the best damn work we can do, and we don’t pay any attention to that stuff.” But will the study help Utah’s case against the EPA? The U.S. District Court in New Mexico, where the case is currently being tried, ruled just this month

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Hynek describes Lake Powell as a “sediment trap.” Any material that enters the reservoir via the San Juan, “essentially gets stored right there. It does not get passed down through the dam. It does not keep going.” Thus, if the Gold King Mine waste made it to the reservoir, it’s still there, somewhere—as is any other contamination that has been released into the river any time since the reservoir was filled. The EPA doesn’t deny this. The issue of dispute between the state and the feds is the severity of the contamination, whether it’s likely to pose a threat to human or animal health—and whether the EPA ought to do more than it has to clean it up. The EPA’s 2017 conclusion that the rivers had returned to its full health—or, at least, to the conditions that existed prior to the 2015 spill—was based in part on an analysis that determined the water in the river no longer exceeded federal contamination criteria. Indeed, conditions on the river more or less returned to normal pretty quickly, recalls Nancy Mesner, a Water Quality Specialist in Utah State University’s Department of Watershed Sciences, which is not tied to the ongoing study. When the metals blew out of the mine in 2015, Mesner explains, they had dissolved into the water itself, which made them more mobile. But once they entered the open river, the metals rapidly became solid again. “My understanding is that things dropped out pretty fast, and incorporated into the sediment,” she says. But this doesn’t mean that sediment is forever buried, tucked away safe and sound. Tiny invertebrates can still pick up the sediment. When these are

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n 2015, Americans watched in horror as a plume of bright orange sludge burst out of a Colorado mine and plunged down the Animas River toward downstream communities in Colorado, New Mexico and Utah. And then … it vanished. As the waste wound its way down the river, scientists predicted that Lake Powell would become the final resting place for the harmful heavy metals the plume contained, and Gina McCarthy, then leader of the Environmental Protection Agency, promised that the federal government would reimburse states for any downstream damages. Two years later, the EPA concluded that the San Juan and Animas rivers had essentially returned to normal, and that, in fact, the 2015 spill had been relatively minimal—the equivalent, the agency estimated, to just four to seven days of normal discharge from the Gold King Mine. Utah, dissatisfied, joined four other entities in filing suit against the EPA, which they allege has implemented a Superfund cleanup program at the Gold King Mine site while doing little to address the contamination in Lake Powell. The state seeks $1.9 billion in damages—the amount the Utah attorney general believes it would cost to locate and remove the metals, thought to be buried in the sediment beneath Lake Powell. But where, exactly, did the spill go, and just how much waste has the Gold King Mine leaked into the lake? Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey— with funding from the Utah Department of Environmental Quality and the EPA—are determined to find out. And while they’re cognizant of the political implications, Scott Hynek, one of the USGS geologists working the case, is inclined to see the silver lining—a rare opportunity to pursue important scientific questions in a remote, understudied region of the world, and with considerable funding to boot. “Let’s be real,” he says. “They need an arbiter.”


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institute its Medicaid expansion plan on April 1, but Jones is one of the lucky ones. He’ll get coverage. Eventually. At the beginning of this year’s legislative session, lawmakers passed SB96, a bill that effectively supersedes Proposition 3. It should make between 70- and 90,000 people eligible for Medicaid. Conservative legislators proudly proclaimed that though they were protecting the state’s financial interests by limiting the scope of Medicaid expansion, they were narrowing the chasm that traps Utahns too poor to buy insurance through the Affordable Care Act (ACA), yet not in dire enough circumstances to qualify for Medicaid. “But, in closing that gap, they’ve created new ones,” Utah Health Policy Project’s Stacy Stanford says. “They’ve built the bridge, but it’s a bridge with some missing planks and holes in it, to go across the coverage gap.” The Legislature’s action in eviscerating Prop 3 has its share of vocal critics.

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“The frames, I can’t get ’em adjusted anymore,” Jones says, his 39-year-old face behind the cracked lenses filled with an outdated prescription. “The metal’s been weakened so many times by being adjusted.” Jones is one of about 17,000 Utahns who gets his medical insurance through the Primary Care Network (PCN), a program that offers health coverage to adults who earn low incomes but don’t qualify for Medicaid. The funds are only good for a limited range of services. Jones still pays about $60 every month for therapy, and $4 for each prescription that helps him manage his depression, anxiety and alcohol cravings. Those financial obligations add up, and they make Jones feel like a burden. He doesn’t have a job. He’s a full-time caregiver to his 67-year-old mother, who suffers from an array of ailments

including a degenerative nerve disease and an inoperable tumor beside her spinal cord. “We sit down at the end of each month, and we go through, ‘What do we really need versus what can we get away without having?’” Jones says as he sits on the living room sofa in his and his mother’s Cottonwood Heights two-bedroom condo. “It makes me feel like less of an adult and less of a man to have those conversations.” He wishes he had enough money to care for those who are important to him—his mom, significant other and cat. “In this society, it’s pushed on male people to be the provider, to work, to have a job and provide for your family and loved ones,” Jones says. “And I feel like I’m failing them.” Jones soon should have a bit more cash in his pocket. PCN enrollees like him are supposed to be switched over to Medicaid coverage next month, meaning he’ll spend less on prescriptions and not have to pay on a sliding scale for his therapy sessions. As of press time, there still is no guarantee the state will

ohn-William Jones has high hopes for the day he’s enrolled in Medicaid. Maybe an ear, nose and throat specialist can tell him why his sinuses are still affected from the virus he battled a month ago. Perhaps a CAT scan or an ultrasound can explain the sharp, shooting pains in his lower abdomen. And new glasses probably wouldn’t hurt—they’d help him see clearer than the pair he’s been wearing for the past 15 years.

@ kelan _ lyons

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Mind the Gap

By Kelan Lyons / klyons@ cityweekly.net /

Their health on standby, thousands of low-income Utahns await to see if they’ll benefit from Medicaid expansion.

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KELAN LYONS

John-William Jones


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Sticking a finger under his worn-out glasses to wipe away a tear, Jones gets emotional as he talks about Prop 3. He insists on publicly thanking the Utahns who voted in favor of extending health care to people like him, strangers trying to manage their chronic health problems. Then he issues a challenge to the legislators who voted in favor of overwriting the ballot initiative: “Live the way we have to live. Don’t have outside funds, resources; spend two months in our shoes, and then tell us: is this enough to live?” he says. “This is not a life of luxury. It’s a hard life.”

Leonard Bagalwa

of people gathered in the Capitol’s rotunda to tell lawmakers to keep their hands off Prop 3, a ballot initiative voters approved last November that would have extended Medicaid to an estimated 150,000 low-income Utahns. Stanford was one of the speakers that day. She told the crowd that tinkering with the expansion would hurt vulnerable people in need of medical care. “We’re not fooled by that, right?” she asked from the bottom of a marble staircase. “We know that adjustment is a repeal, right?” Two weeks later, Gov. Gary Herbert signed SB96 into law. Touting the state’s fiscal responsibility, Herbert said in a statement that, “SB96 balances Utah’s sense of compassion and frugality. It provides quality coverage to the same population covered by Proposition 3 in a meaningful, humane and sustainable way.” Leonard Bagalwa was also among those who rallied at the Capitol a few weeks before Herbert’s signature overwrote Prop 3. Now 39 years old, Bagalwa grew up in the Congo until he fled his home when he was 17. He lived in refugee camps in Malawi and Zimbabwe until being resettled in Utah in 2004. He cast his first ballot in a U.S. election in 2016. “The first time I voted in this country was to vote for a woman,” Bagalwa says. The second time, he voted in favor of Prop 3. It’s not an encouraging track record to vote for two failed political dreams, but Bagalwa remains optimistic about the power of the people’s voice. “There’s a time I will be heard,” he says. That doesn’t mean he wasn’t disappointed by SB96’s passing. “I was born in a Third World country, where a dictatorship and no democracy, nothing, no respect of human rights,” he says. “I just saw the Third World country again, where politicians don’t respect people’s vote.”

Medicaid for All? Those in favor of the ballot initiative have a reason to

be upset—there are key distinctions between SB96 and Prop 3, and supporters of the latter argue that many people will lose coverage under the former. The Legislature’s plan would impose work reporting requirements and include caps on enrollment and the amount of money spent on each enrollee—none of which were a part of the ballot initiative. Proponents insist these measures will save taxpayers’ money and protect the state from allocating huge parts of its budget toward Medicaid. “It’s not a simple black-and-white issue,” Stanford acknowledges, since many who need coverage stand to benefit from the lawmakers’ plan. “There’s 70,000 getting care, but there’s like 50,000 who are still left out.” Take the work reporting requirements, for example. Four months ago, before getting up to check on his mom, Jones laid in bed each morning and ran

KELAN LYONS

AOnSlight Proposition the first day of the legislative session, hundreds

through a checklist of people who would miss him if he were to take his life. “It was every day, trying to convince myself that there was reason to get up and live,” he says. He doesn’t think he could have held a job during his last bout with depression. Perhaps comprehensive coverage will make him better equipped to gain steady employment. He’ll have more resources to fight his demons. “I want to work. I really do. Most of us who are in this situation, we want to work, we want to have jobs, we want to have regular insurance,” he says. “We don’t want to be charity cases.” Most of the Medicaid enrollees Stanford knows already have jobs. The issue with the work requirement lies with the reporting. “Paperwork is already confusing. I’m a health-policy expert, this is what I do for a living, and I lost my insurance briefly last year because I did a paperwork error,” she says, recalling when she transitioned from a private insurance plan to one acquired through the ACA. “Any of us can make a mistake and lose our coverage, but on Medicaid, this is a population that they’re less likely to be fluent in English, they’re less likely to have an understanding of the complex health-care system, they’re less likely to have internet access, cell service, so it’s all these complicated things. It’s just adding another barrier.” In mid-2018, Arkansas became the first state to demand its Medicaid enrollees fulfill a work requirement. More than 18,000 people lost their coverage in the first six months. Residents in three states have issued legal challenges against similar mandates, putting taxpayers on the hook as officials defend the suits in court. Another crucial distinction between SB96 and Prop 3 is who gets to access Medicaid and who has to obtain coverage from the ACA. Under Prop 3, people who earn between 0 and 138 percent of the federal poverty level—up to $16,753 for a single person, or $34,638 for a family of four—would have been eligible for Medicaid. Per SB96, those who earn up to 100 percent of the FPL—$12,140 for an individual—

qualify for Medicaid, but people whose income levels fall between 101 and 138 percent must purchase insurance through the ACA’s online marketplace. In the committee debates prior to SB96’s passing, lawmakers said ACA coverage would cost little for Utahns whose incomes lie between 101 and 138 percent of the FPL. According to a fact sheet distributed by the governor’s office, people whose annual incomes are $12,140 could purchase a plan for as little as $3.57 a month. But they’d still need to fork out a co-pay whenever they sought medical attention, and pay to fill a prescription. Bagalwa knows firsthand how seemingly affordable insurance can stretch a family thin. As a refugee case manager for Health Access, he helps people enroll in health coverage through the ACA or apply for Medicaid. He’s seen people get priced out of the marketplace or be unable to afford important medications needed to manage their illnesses. He also would have qualified for Medicaid if Prop 3 had become law. He earns about $36,000 annually, putting his six-member household under the 138 percent FPL threshold. Now, he pays almost $250 a month in premiums for him and his wife. His four children are covered under Medicaid. “My one check goes to pay my mortgage. The other check goes to pay the bills,” he says of his monthly pay. “In case of emergency, we don’t have anything else.” Even with the hefty cost of insurance, Bagalwa is in a better position than many. The 45-day open enrollment period to purchase ACA insurance for the 2019 calendar year ended Dec. 15, 2018. That was two months before Herbert signed SB96 into law. “We’ve already gotten phone calls from people that said, ‘Well, Prop 3 won, so I didn’t sign up under healthcare.gov, ‘cause I was gonna get Medicaid in April,’” Stanford says. Utah Health Department Communications Director Tom Hudachko says his office asked the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) about the feds allowing those Utahns to sign up for ACA


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the past several years. She’d been priced out of buying an ACA plan until June 2018, when her husband’s job in Orem offered him a raise. They’d had a bit more money to pay for a plan on the ACA marketplace, but because they weren’t in an open enrollment period, they took the coverage offered through the husband’s work. Every month, about $700 in insurance premiums were taken out of his paychecks for his and Alecia’s coverage. Not that it mattered—with a $4,000 deductible, Bales rarely went to the doctor’s office, out of fear she’d have to pay hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars out of her own pocket. Sometimes, Bales gets an allergic reaction that makes her throat swell and affects her breathing. She doesn’t know what causes it; she figures getting tests done to figure it out would also cost too much. She has a few EpiPens to relieve her symptoms. She knows she’s supposed to go to the hospital after she jabs them into her leg, but is too afraid to visit the emergency room. “I realize I could die … but I’m so terrified of owing somebody so much that I’m going to have to choose between food and paying this bill, I just choose not to go to the doctor,” she says. Bales thinks it’s vital to have health insurance. Her 2-yearold son has a chronically low blood platelet count. Someone needs to watch him constantly. And her 10-year-old daughter

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AAlecia LongBales Waithas been on a Medicaid merry-go-round for

has high blood pressure and kidney problems. “If anything were to happen to me, I don’t know who would help take care of them,” Bales says. “I don’t have time to be sick.” Bales’ husband lost his job at the end of February, meaning the parents have joined their five children on the state’s Medicaid program. But Bales expects they’ll soon be booted because her husband just got offered another gig. Were the state to institute the program proposed by SB96, she could qualify for Medicaid all year, thanks to a 12-month eligibility provision that wasn’t even a part of Prop 3. But despite officials’ assurances, it’s not a guarantee. “I’m at a point where I feel like I’m about to have a mental breakdown,” Bales says of her insurance coverage’s uncertain future. “There are people like me who are waiting on the edge of our seats to see what happens, what goes through, to see how this affects our life.” In order to enact SB96’s proposals, the federal government will need to grant Utah permission to create its own version of Medicaid expansion. “We want people to know that these waivers are not guaranteed,” Nate Crippes, an attorney for the Salt Lake Citybased Disability Law Center, says. “A lot of these things have never been done before, and some of them have been challenged in court.” The first—and most urgent—hurdle is a waiver for a socalled “bridge plan” in which the state would pay 30 percent of the cost of expansion—as opposed to the typical 90/10 split, where the feds pick up the lions’ share of the tab—and eventually impose work reporting requirements and have the ability to cap enrollment. That’s supposed to happen by next week, so state officials can start accepting applications at the same time they would have under Prop 3. As of press time, CMS still has not granted the request. Herbert told City Weekly in mid-March that he was 80 percent sure Utah would get its waiver in time for the April deadline. “There’s a couple of things that need to be worked out,” he said, “and a couple of bureaucrats, probably … that need to be convinced that this is the right thing to do.” Next up is the per-capita cap waiver, which Utah Health Department’s Hudachko says the state plans to submit by late spring. Without getting too into the weeds, this parameter would lock the state’s funding for its Medicaid pro-

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insurance under a special enrollment period. CMS denied the request. “So, those who didn’t purchase coverage on the exchange during the last open enrollment period would need to wait until the next open enrollment period,” Hudachko wrote in an email, meaning they will not be covered until January 2020. Herbert tells City Weekly he’d be “happy to” lobby the Trump administration on behalf of those who did not buy insurance through the ACA exchange during the last open enrollment period. “I’m sure we’d want to advocate for the people. They somehow fell in the crack there, and hopefully wasn’t all just of their own, ‘Well, we think we’re gonna win the lottery and it didn’t happen,’” Herbert says. “We want to make sure that everybody qualifies, gets health care.”

RAY HOWZE

Gov. Gary Herbert

gram by setting a fixed amount per enrollee. “Nobody budgets to a number, but if we have a per-capita cap, we can understand, ‘This is how much we’re going to spend as a state,’ and the federal government knows, ‘This is how much we’re going to spend as a federal government,’” Herbert says. “It’s just a matter of saying, ‘Whatever we’re buying today, we can afford tomorrow.’” Not so, argue SB96 naysayers. Jessie Mandle, a senior health policy analyst for Voices for Utah Children, warns that a per-capita cap could hurt the state. “That means Utah will be on the hook for paying more if there are any program changes,” she says. “And that’s just a risky strategy to cover kids and families and individuals.” If CMS doesn’t approve the per-capita cap plan by January of next year, Hudachko says they’ll work on a “fallback” proposal that’s similar to Prop 3—meaning it would cover people who earn up to 138 percent of the FPL—but has work requirements and a limit on the number of people who can enroll in Medicaid. If that doesn’t pan out, the state will implement Prop 3. But in order for that to happen, the plan would need to survive a 2020 legislative session that follows lawmakers rewriting not one, but two voter-approved ballot initiatives, the people’s will be damned. “If we don’t get the waivers, then we’ll go back to the initiative, and do it that way,” Herbert pledges. “So, either way we’re going to have access to affordable health care.” The state’s Medicaid expansion implementation tool kit lays out a handy timeline for what waivers officials will seek and when they’ll give up and settle on full expansion. It plots out rough estimates for the next 14 months, ending on July 1, 2020. In the meantime, people like Bagalwa will perform the delicate balancing act of paying their premiums and stretching their paychecks to take care of their loved ones. “Those people, they grow up in a family where they don’t have to worry about anything. Everything is there for them,” Bagalwa says about legislators who overwrote Prop 3. “So, they have to understand there’s people that didn’t have that chance.” When you’re living in the coverage gap, those days and weeks matter. Waiting six extra months, or a year, to see a doctor is not an abstract problem. Those Utahns will continue to manage their pain and illnesses every day until they can see a medical professional without worrying about bankrupting their families. “I think there are certain people, even myself included, I may one day end up having an allergic reaction and thinking I’m going to be OK, and then I’m not,” Bales says. “It would not surprise me one bit to find that people are dying … They’re dying, and yet the government’s saying, ‘Oh, everyone’s covered.’” CW


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ESSENTIALS

Plan-B Theatre Co.: … Of Color

The challenge of being a person of color in America today hasn’t escaped Plan-B Theatre Co.’s artistic director, Jerry Rapier. The company makes it a point to present works that help expand local dialogue while challenging prevailing mores and expectations. Plan-B’s upcoming production … Of Color extends that notion by confronting the obstacles local artists often face when attempting to share stories from their own viewpoints. It grew out of a gathering the company hosted in June 2017, which attracted more than 50 artists and focused on the idea of telling stories borne from different cultural perspectives. The artists-of-color writing workshop, initiated by Plan-B and organized by playwright Julie Jensen, resulted in four worldpremiere short plays written by a diverse group of Utah playwrights. Plan-B boldly describes it as “unlike anything undertaken in the history of Utah theater.” “Between the cast of color, the playwrights of color and the all-female design team, I believe this is the future of the theater,” Rapier says. “We’re to the point in the American theater— hopefully globally—where we have to stop pretending we don’t see color. It’s impossible not to see what one another looks like. What matters is what we do with what we see.” Rapier notes that the Dramatists Guild of America estimates only 15 percent of plays produced in 2018 were by artists of color. “We’re doing our best to change that locally,” he says. “This is our fifth consecutive season exceeding that percentage.” (Lee Zimmerman) Plan-B Theatre Co.: … Of Color @ Rose Wagner Center, 138 W. 300 South, through April 7, dates and times vary, $10-$22, planbtheatre.org

THURSDAY 3/28

SATURDAY 3/30

Performers bring all kinds of unique background experiences to their work, and Craig Robinson is no exception. Before he took his talents to movies and television, Robinson earned a master’s degree in education and followed in his mother’s footsteps as a music teacher in his hometown of Chicago, an experience that helped inspire his short-lived NBC sitcom Mr. Robinson. Imagine having the opportunity to enjoy his entertaining lesson plans. Nowadays, Robinson shows how it’s done as a comedian, learning in Chicago’s legendary Second City and getting small roles in films like Knocked Up before landing his breakout role in 2005 as The Office’s taciturn warehouse worker (and eventual manager) Darryl Philbin. He also continues to turn up on Brooklyn Nine-Nine in the recurring role of Doug Judy, the nemesis/pal of Andy Samberg’s Detective Jake Peralta, and he stretched his acting muscles with a terrific dramatic role as a widowed single dad in the 2016 Sundance Film Festival feature Morris from America. But Robinson’s career doesn’t keep him too busy to return to live stages; he continues to tour as a stand-up performer. For most of his performances, he also brings along his keyboards to showcase the musical prowess he’s brought to episodes of The Office, to his side project with the band The Nasty Delicious, to his occasional musical-comedy duet with fellow comedian Jerry Minor as L. Witherspoon & Chucky and, yes, to his job as a music teacher. So here’s to you, Mr. Robinson; heaven holds a place for those who make us laugh. (Scott Renshaw) Craig Robinson @ Wiseguys SLC, 194 S. 400 West, 801-532-5233, March 28, 7 p.m.; March 29-30, 7 p.m. & 9:30 p.m., $25, wiseguyscomedy.com

When David Parsons and Howell Binkley founded Parsons Dance in 1985, they asked a question that has guided their performances for more than 30 years: “What’s wrong with having fun?” In the New York City-based company’s show at the Eccles Center Theater, the audience gets to see the fruit of that rhetorical question. Each of the show’s five pieces—“Round My World,” “Hand Dance,” “Microburst,” “Caught” and “Whirlaway”—brings its own whimsy and charm to the show. For example, “Caught” uses more than 100 jumps and a strobe light to create the illusion that the performers are flying. The only time the audience sees the dancers is when they are off the ground. Zoey Anderson, one of the company’s performers, says “Caught” is her favorite piece to perform because it creates a stunning visual for the audience and pushes her physically, but she also loves the energy throughout the show. “The work is just so upbeat and energizing and uplifting and athletic,” Anderson says. “It’s truly a company and a show that is for all ages, and there’s something for everyone to see and enjoy.” This energy and fun is a core value at Parsons Dance and was one of the things that drew Anderson to the company when she moved to New York City from Utah. “David Parsons loves humans and humanity and to connect,” Anderson says. “So, we kind of get to break that fourth wall, and we get to reach out to the audience and reach out to each other on stage, and it just creates a wonderful dynamic.” (Kylee Ehmann) Parsons Dance @ Eccles Center, 1750 Kearns Blvd., Park City, 435-655-3114, March 30, 7:30 p.m., $29, parkcityinstitute.org

Craig Robinson

Parsons Dance

DAVID JACOBS

LOIS GREENFIELD

RICK POLLOCK

THURSDAY 3/28

Complete listings online at cityweekly.net

3ARTS PUBLICITY

the

ENTERTAINMENT PICKS, MARCH 28-APRIL 3, 2019

TUESDAY 4/2

Amor Towles: A Gentleman in Moscow In the world of 21st-century publishing, a novelist almost doesn’t dare allow themselves to dream of creating a work that becomes a phenomenon. You write the best work you can and send it out into the world, but nothing can quite prepare you for discovering that readers have fallen in love with that work, turning it into a best-seller. Such is the good fortune that befell author Amor Towles with his second novel, 2016’s A Gentleman in Moscow. Opening during the volatile 1920s in which Russia was becoming the Soviet Union, it tells the story of Count Alexander Rostov, a Russian aristocrat who is called before a Bolshevik tribunal. Rostov finds himself given a life sentence of house arrest at a Moscow hotel across the street from the Kremlin, living in an attic room. There, a man who has never worked a productive day in his life must learn over the course of 30 years to re-frame his existence through his encounters with various other guests and employees of the hotel. A Gentleman in Moscow finally arrives in paperback, after more than 59 weeks on The New York Times’ best-seller list and more than 1.5 million copies sold. And its fascinating story is destined to find another audience, as a TV series adaptation produced by and starring Kenneth Branagh in the title role is set to begin production soon. Join the author for a special engagement in Salt Lake City this week to discuss his fascinating work; an autographed paperback copy is included with admission. (SR) Amor Towles: A Gentleman in Moscow @ Rowland Hall’s Larimer Center, 843 S. Lincoln St., April 2, 7 p.m., pre-sale tickets sold out; limited $20 day-of-event tickets available on first-come, first-served basis, kingsenglish.com


Soon-to-open Marmalade studio aims for inclusivity and experimentation. BY NAOMI CLEGG nclegg@cityweekly.net @naomilemoyne

T

Gheybin Comish tattooing client Eliza Staff in her private studio

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good about the tattoo’s placement. Comish also gave Fenster a small pebble to hold onto while she got tattooed and chatted with Fenster while she worked. “I’m really excited,” Fenster says of the shop’s impending opening. “I know I’m not going to be judged when I walk in there. I know it will be safe, and welcoming, and loving.” “I feel as if I have struggled very hard to open a very heavy door, and once I managed to pry it an inch ajar, a flood of people have stepped in to help me fling it wide open,” Comish says. “People really want this to happen, and that feels really good.” CW

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he tattoo industry in Utah has remained traditional for decades, even as tattoos become more mainstream and more tattooers move toward unique fine-art styles. That attitude has shut many prospective tattooers out of the space—and cut off potential clients who aren’t comfortable in what are often all-male spaces, or don’t find traditional styles appealing. Everybody Tattoos aims to change that. As an aspiring tattooer, Gheybin Comish was turned down for an apprenticeship after helping out at a local shop for more than a year. Comish says the owner told her, “I just think it would be too dramatic to have more than one woman working here.” She sought out apprenticeships at other shops, only to be turned away for being a woman or having an experimental style. After some soul-searching—and a lot of encouragement from friends—she struck out on her own, buying tattoo supplies online and tattooing her partner and friends. Eventually, she set up her own private studio in Utah County. “It is really, really difficult to learn [to tattoo] on your own without people helping you,” she says. Comish drew from her experience to create a new kind of tattoo community. Although Everybody Tattoos won’t officially open until May 1, she’s already recruited more than half a dozen young artists. One of them, Justin James, says, “Gheybin reached out to me based on my art, not my tattooing, and she’s teaching people how to tattoo based on their art. The fact that she’s reaching out to artists who haven’t even thought about tattooing, and then taking them on and teaching them to tattoo, is pretty insane. It’s very, very rare.” The artists join a burgeoning movement toward fine art, experimental tattoos that has taken root internationally, but until now, hasn’t found a place in SLC. “My tattooing

A&E

TREVER HADLEY

Tattoos for Everybody

is fine line and whimsical—bright pastel colors, a little bit earthy and a little bit bright at the same time,” Comish says. She inks animals and magical creatures; you can find, among her recent work, an orange-and-purple chihuahua-bumblebee hybrid and a blushing, noseless human pot with a yellow-and-green ombré cactus sprouting from its head. “I want to offer the styles of tattoo art that aren’t currently being offered,” she says. That has meant reaching out to a new wellspring of artists—often female, often LBGTQ and always passionate about their art—and mentoring them in tattooing, although Comish has shied away from calling in-studio collaborations apprenticeships. “There’s no set structure, there’s no timeline; I’m helping them to learn as they want to, at their own pace, and really happy to do it because we all benefit,” she says. Those artists include folks like Jill Whit, a tattooer from Logan who inks mostly black-and-white fine-line tattoos: rainbows, segmented bodies, plants with hands as blossoms. Whit’s story arc echoes Comish’s—rejection, solo practice and, eventually, a private studio. But having an in-person community changes the experience for wouldbe artists who don’t fit the traditional mold. “I really was completely on my own. If I had a tattoo question, there was no one I could ask at all,” Whit says. “That’s why I’m so hyped about the shop, because I feel like it’s going to be an actual hub for that same idea physically, rather than just something that exists online.” The existence of a shop, and a supportive group of artists, means new tattooers won’t have to go through the same ordeal Whit and Comish experienced. Take Devin Lindley, Comish’s chief brainstorming partner. Lindley has never worked or even been tattooed in a traditional shop. But it was with Lindley that Comish came up with the idea for Everybody Studios. “We just bonded over a mutual need and want for a safe, positive, artistic space for people,” Lindley says. Comish recalls them asking each other, “What if there was a place to be tattooed that was beautiful and welcoming; what if instead of just getting a tattoo, a person could have a meaningful experience, a magical experience; what if getting a tattoo had elements that were even fun? What if it was sort of spiritual?” That magical experience means clients enter a space designed to make them feel like they belong. One client, Dana Fenster, won a design from Comish in one of her frequent tattoo giveaways—a colorful betta fish-cat hybrid. She says Comish went out of her way to create a positive, comfortable experience, immediately handing her a drink—kombucha—and making sure she felt really

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moreESSENTIALS

COMPLETE LISTINGS ONLINE AT CITYWEEKLY.NET

Photographer Kallie Hancock explores the connections between her new home in Utah and her childhood home in Hawaii through the series Spectacles (“Finding” is pictured), on display at Finch Lane Gallery (54 S. Finch Lane, 801-596-5000, saltlakearts.org), through April 12.

PERFORMANCE THEATER

An American in Paris Hale Centre Theatre, 9900 S. Monroe St., Sandy, through April 6, hct.org Curtain Up! An Evening of Broadway NCPA Smith Theatre, 800 W. University Parkway, Orem, March 28, 7:30 p.m., uvu.edu/events Macbeth Harman Theatre, 3333 S. Decker Lake Drive, West Valley City, March 29 & April 1, 7 p.m., culturalcelebration.org Mamma Mia! Egyptian Theatre, 328 Main, Park City, through March 31, parkcityshows.com Newsies Hale Center Theater Orem, 225 W. 400 North, through April 20, haletheater.org ...Of Color Rose Wagner Center, 138 W. 300 South, through April 7, planbtheatre.org (see p. 16) Script-In-Hand Reading: Balthazar Rose Wagner Center, 138 W. 300 South, April 3, 7 p.m., planbtheatre.org Steel Magnolias Hale Centre Theatre, 9900 S. Monroe St., Sandy, through June 1, hct.org Sweat Pioneer Memorial Theatre, 300 S. 1400 East, through April 13, pioneertheatre.org Urinetown Terrace Plaza Playhouse, 99 E. 4700 South, Ogden, through April 5, Monday, Friday & Saturday, 7:30 p.m., terraceplayhouse.com Willy Wonka The Ziegfeld Theater, 3934 S. Washington Blvd., Ogden, through March 30, theziegfeldtheater.com

DANCE

Junction Dance Co.: Rebirth Leona Wagner Black Box Theatre, 138 W. 300 South, March 29-31, 8 p.m., artsaltlake.org Parsons Dance Eccles Center, 1750 Kearns Blvd., Park City, March 30, 7:30 p.m., parkcityinstitute.org (see p. 16)

CLASSICAL & SYMPHONY

Brown Bag Organ Recital First United Methodist Church, 203 S. 200 East, Wednesdays at noon, firstmethodistslc.wordpress.com BYU Symphony Orchestra: Concerto Night BYU De Jong Concert Hall, 800 E. Campus Drive, Provo, March 7, 7:30 p.m., arts.byu.edu Festive Overture: A UVU Musical Celebration NCPA Smith Theatre, 800 W. University Parkway,

Orem, March 28, 7:30 p.m., uvu.edu/events Great Basin Baroque: Divine | Diabolical Day-Riverside Library, 1575 W. 1000 North, March 30, 3-4:30 p.m., slcpl.org Utah Symphony: Dvorák’s New World Symphony Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple, March 29-30, 7:30 p.m., utahsymphony.org

COMEDY & IMPROV

Arsenio Hall Wiseguys West Jordan, 3763 W. Center Park Drive, West Jordan, March 29-30, 7 & 9:30 p.m., wiseguyscomedy.com Craig Robinson Wiseguys SLC, 194 S. 400 West, March 28, 7 p.m.; March 29-30, 7 & 9:30 p.m., wiseguyscomedy.com (see p. 16) Dry Bar Comedy Live Jeanne Wagner Theatre, 138 W. 300 South, March 29-30, 7 p.m., artsaltlake.org Jacob Leigh Wiseguys SLC, 194 S. 400 West, March 31, 7 p.m., wiseguyscomedy.com Open Mic Wiseguys SLC, 194 S. 400 West, Wednesdays, 7 p.m., wiseguyscomedy.com Shawn Paulsen Wiseguys Ogden, 269 E. 25th St., March 29-30, 8 p.m., wiseguyscomedy.com

LITERATURE AUTHOR APPEARANCES

Dr. Bonnie K. Baxter & Jaimi Butler: The Great Salt Lake Monster Mystery Weller Book Works, 607 Trolley Square, March 30, 2 p.m., wellerbookworks.com Julie Berry: Lovely War The King’s English Bookshop, 1511 S. 1500 East, March 28, 7 p.m., kingsenglish.com Rosalyn Eves: Winter War Awakening The King’s English Bookshop, 1511 S. 1500 East, March 30, 2 p.m., kingsenglish.com Amor Towles: A Gentleman in Moscow Rowland Hall, 843 S. Lincoln St., April 2, 7 p.m., kingsenglish.com (see p. 16) Pablo Cartaya Sorenson Arts and Education Complex, 1721 E. Campus Drive, April 2, 6:15 p.m., kingsenglish.com Ridley Pearson: Super Sons: The PolarShield Project The King’s English, 1511 S. 1500 East, April 2, 7 p.m., kingsenglish.com


SPECIAL EVENTS FARMERS MARKET

Winter Market Rio Grande Depot, 270 S. Rio Grande St., through April 20, Saturdays, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., slcfarmersmarket.org

FESTIVALS & FAIRS

Chocolate & Cheese Festival Natural History Museum of Utah, 301 Wakara Way, March 30-31, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., nhmu.utah.edu Festival of Colors Sri Sri Radha Krishna Temple, 8628 S. State Road, Spanish Fork, March 30, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; March 31, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., utahkrishnas.org Art & Soup Celebration Salt Palace Convention Center, 100 S. West Temple, April 3-4, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. & 5-9 p.m., cns-cares.org

LGBTQ

Pride Night with the Salt Lake Stallions Rice-Eccles Stadium, 451 S. 1400 East, March 30, 6 p.m., utahgaychamber.com Utah Pride Center Game Night Utah Pride Center, 1380 S. Main St., April 1, 7:30 p.m.-9 p.m., utahpridecenter.org

TALKS & LECTURES

VISUAL ART Art Elevated Urban Arts Gallery, 116 S. Rio Grande St., through March 31, urbanartsgallery.org Bill Reed: Emotionscapes Local Colors of Utah Gallery, 1054 E. 2100 South, through April 16, localcolorsart.com Bonnie Susec & Susan Beck: Landscapes Calm and Desperate Alice Gallery, 617 E. South Temple, through May 3, artsandmuseums.utah.gov Dreamscapes Utah Arts Alliance, 116 S. Rio Grande St., through April 15, utaharts.org Ecaterina Leonte: Planet Ocean AndersonFoothill Library, 1135 S. 2100 East, through April 11, slcpl.org

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GALLERIES & MUSEUMS

UTAH CANN

MAY 10 - 11 UTAH STATE FAIR PARK

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Rasoul Sham: Reflections on the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam Weller Bookworks, 607 Trolley Square, March 28, 6:30 p.m., wellerbookworks.com Risk! Trues Tales Boldly Told Metro Music Hall, 615 W. 100 South, March 9, 6 p.m., metromusichall.com Connecting People With Nature Through Art Ogden Nature Center, 966 W. 12th St., April 1, 6 p.m., ogdennaturecenter.org Marla Frazee: Young at Art: A Selection of Caldecott Art Provo City Library, 550 N. University Ave., April 2, 7 p.m., kingsenglish.com

For the Love of Fiber Utah Cultural Celebration Center, 1355 W. 3100 South, West Valley City, through April 24, culturalcelebration.org Heidi Jensen: Sit Comfortably in a Darkened Room and Think of Nothing UMOCA, 20 S. West Temple, through May 4, utahmoca.org The International Tolerance Project Utah Museum of Fine Arts, 410 Campus Center Drive, through June 23, umfa.utah.edu Jim Frazer: Glyphs Finch Lane Gallery, 54 S. Finch Lane, through April 12, saltlakearts.org Kallie Hancock: Spectacles Finch Lane Gallery, 54 S. Finch Lane, through April 12, saltlakearts.org (see p. 18) Lenka Clayton: Under These Conditions UMOCA, 20 S. West Temple, through May 11, utahmoca.org Life During Wartime Art Access Gallery, 230 S. 500 West, through April 12, accessart.org Mary Pusey: Moab en Plein Air Main Library, 210 E. 400 South, through April 13, slcpl.org Maynard Dixon: High Desert David Dee Fine Arts, 1709 E. 1300 South, through April 5, daviddeefinearts.com Mike Simi: Gettin’ By UMOCA, 20 S. West Temple, through May 11, utahmoca.org Nancy Starks: Roll, Fold and Pinch Main Library, 210 E. 400 South, through April 26, slcpl.org Nicholas Coley A Gallery, 1321 S. 2100 East, through April 20, agalleryonline.com Out of the Night Art Access Gallery, 230 S. 500 West, through April 12, accessart.org Pale Blue Dot Urban Arts Gallery, 116 S. Rio Grande St., through April 28, urbanartsgallery.org The Race to Promontory: The Transcontinental Railroad and the American West Utah Museum of Fine Arts, 410 Campus Center Drive, through May 26, umfa.utah.edu salt 14: Yang Yongliang Utah Museum of Fine Arts, 410 Campus Center Drive, through June 2, umfa.utah.edu Sarah Lewis: Mharthanóir Art Access Gallery, 230 S. 500 West, through April 12, accessart.org Shady Acres UMOCA, 20 S. West Temple, through May 25, utahmoca.org Sounds of Silk Utah Cultural Celebration Center, 1355 W. 3100 South, West Valley, through April 8, culturalcelebration.org Sue Flood: Cold Places Kimball Art Center, 1401 Kearns Blvd., Park City, through April 7, kimballartcenter.org Tracing the Path State Capitol, 350 N. State, through June 26, goldenspike150.org Transcontinental: People, Place, Impact Rio Gallery, 300 S. Rio Grande, through June 16, artsandmuseums.utah.gov Wasatch Camera Club: Lovely As A Tree Red Butte Garden, 300 Wakara Way, through April 7, redbuttegarden.org Wendy Wischer & Jeffrey Moore: Displacing Vibrations Nox Contemporary Gallery, 440 S. 400 West, through April 5, bit.ly/noxcontemporary

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BY ALEX SPRINGER comments@cityweekly.net @captainspringer

W

hen it comes to late-night comfort food, it’s hard to do better than a stuffed-to-the-gills burrito served up by any one of our local fast-casual Mexican eateries. Recently, I’ve come to appreciate the gigantic, hangover-destroying might of the breakfast burrito, which led me to the question of all questions: Which place does breakfast best?

Alberto’s ($6.99)

Floriberto’s ($5.99)

This guy was a bit of a dark horse on my list. I hadn’t visited this restaurant before and therefore had no frame of reference. As I wasn’t sure what to expect, I was surprised at the flavor of the potatoes and the ham—there was some magic hap-

Rancherito’s ($5.69)

This particular location has a special place in my heart—it was a go-to late-night hangout for me and my friends while I was living with my folks during my first few years of college. I will always extol the virtues of Gual Berto’s carne asada fries, but their breakfast burrito is strictly middle of the pack. The main problem is that their ham cubes aren’t as generously endowed as those on their cousins’ menus. The ham needs to hold its own in a solid breakfast burrito, but that’s hard to do when it’s spread as thin as it is here. Outside of that, however, this breakfast burrito is solid—especially since it’s on the cheaper end of the list. 1600 W. 12600 South, Riverton, 801-302-8471

This is the one to beat. I used to live near this particualr Rancherito’s, so I’d swing by for breakfast fairly regularly. Every time I ordered their breakfast burrito, it was near unto perfection. The secret to this burrito’s success is the fact that the trademark gobs of melted cheddar cheese are evenly distributed throughout the fluffy scrambled eggs, creating the ideal backdrop for the cubed and grilled ham. As ingredient ratios make or break a burrito, this beast achieves a harmony that the others just don’t quite nail. Plus its price point puts it on the cheaper end of the spectrum—this is the most burrito bang for your buck that you can get. CW 7849 S. Redwood Road, 801-566-0083, rancheritosmexicanfood.com

MARCH 28, 2019 | 21

I have a feeling that Alberto’s might be concentrating their strengths outside of the breakfast burrito realm. Alberto’s had the best tortilla by far—warm, chewy and crisp in exactly the right places. They also serve up the most expensive burrito on the list, which means you can get

Gual Berto’s ($5.55)

| CITY WEEKLY |

going for something purely foundational. Those thinking that one breakfast burrito is very much like another need to think again. The nuances at play here actually are quite impressive. Let’s get started, shall we?

Beto’s was my entry point into the world of comfort burrito joints, and I will forever maintain that their version of the Texano burrito is the best one on the market. When it came to their breakfast burrito, however, I was a little disappointed. Each bite found me searching for the ham, eggs and cheese that seemed to be hidden somewhere within all those potatoes. Although the tortillas here are consistently delicious, it was hard to get through such an enormous starch-fest. 1314 N. Redwood Road, Ste. 100, 801-766-8069, betosmexicanfood.com

Where others had missteps on the potatoes or the tortillas, none were as disappointing on the ham front as the burrito from Willy Berto’s. The egg, cheese and potato ratio was all good, but there was something undeniably packaged about the ham’s flavor here. Rather than merge harmoniously with the other ingredients, the hot dog flavor of the ham became more aggressive with each bite. A bit of time on a hot griddle would do wonders to improve this modestly priced offering. 919 E. 4500 South, Millcreek, 801-262-1700, willybertos.com

Seeking an answer, I visited six different—yet startlingly similar—Mexican joints around town to see what each place was packing. Before we get to the judgments, however, let me explain the ground rules. Taking a page from Colin Atrophy Hagendorf’s memoir Slice Harvester, in which the author ranks New York pizzerias by the quality of their plain cheese pizza, I decided to stick to the most customary form of breakfast burrito: ham, eggs, cheese and potatoes wrapped up in a blanket-sized tortilla. I also eschewed the different salsas and garnishes available— a grave sin, I know, but I was

Beto’s ($5.99)

Willy Berto’s ($5.50)

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Behold the local breakfast burrito ranking you never knew you needed.

pening with the pre-cooking before they met their final, tortillawrapped embrace. Most, if not all, the burritos on this list include potatoes as more of a supporting role, but the potatoes at Floriberto’s had been loved just a bit more while they were on the grill, giving them a more flavorful exterior. The same pleasant char was present on the ham as well, which could have pushed this burrito into the No. 1 spot if the tortilla wasn’t a bit too blonde. Perhaps I just got a fluke, but an underdone tortilla is an underdone tortilla. 8732 S. State, Sandy, 801-566-2985, floribertos.com

| CITYWEEKLY.NET |

Battle of the ’Tos

more for your money elsewhere. The most fascinating part was catching the smoky aromas of a wellutilized grill with each bite. It was food cooked on the same surface that wrought greatness elsewhere, which made me think that Alberto’s true power lies within another burrito on their menu. Discovering this Excalibur among burritos has become my most recent food quest. 511 S. 300 West, 801-531-0411, albertosmex.com


the

BACK BURNER BY ALEX SPRINGER @captainspringer

year

Sweet chocolate and savory cheese—plus a bit of history—combine this weekend during the Chocolate and Cheese Festival at the Natural History Museum of Utah (301 Wakara Way, nhmu.utah.edu). Vendors like Caputo’s Market & Deli, Amano Artisan Chocolate, Beehive Cheese and We Olive intermingle at the twoday marketplace hosted by the museum on Saturday and Sunday, March 30 and 31, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. In addition to stocking up on of the finest local chocolate and cheese around, the festival features workshops where attendees can learn the mysteries of mole or pick up some tips on creating the perfect cheese board. And you can also wander around and check out the consistently amazing exhibits featured at the museum. Admission prices are required to attend the marketplace; register for workshops via the museum’s website.

s!

Ramen Festival Fundraiser

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Chocolate and Cheese Festival

ng

Celebrat i

ninth & ninth 254 south main

For those whose interests veer toward heaping bowls of ramen, the Salt Lake Buddhist Temple (211 W. 100 South) is hosting a ramen-centric fundraiser on Sunday, March 31, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. It’s a celebration of this most delicious of noodle soups, featuring shoyu, shio and miso broths, in addition to some vegetarian options. Attendees can purchase all types of ramen for a mere $5 per bowl, which is a reasonable donation to a good cause. In addition to the star of the show, attendees can pick up different desserts at the baked-goods booth onsite. If noodles, broth and some well-cooked pork belly tickle your senses, then you won’t want to miss this.

Art and Soup Celebration AS SEEN ON “ DINERS, DRIVE-INS AND DIVES”

Serving American Comfort Food Since 1930 -CREEKSIDE PATIO-89 YEARS AND GOING STRONG-BREAKFAST SERVED DAILY UNTIL 4PM-DELICIOUS MIMOSAS & BLOODY MARY’S-LIVE MUSIC ON THE PATIO-SCHEDULE AT RUTHSDINER.COM“In a perfect world, every town would have a diner just like Ruth’s” -CityWeekly

“Like having dinner at Mom’s in the mountains”

I’ve always felt that soup doesn’t get enough opportunities to cut loose and strut its stuff. This is why I’m looking forward to the 31st annual Art and Soup Celebration at the Salt Palace Convention Center (100 S. West Temple) on Wednesday and Thursday, April 3 and 4. The event has attracted more than 25 local restaurants and 50 local artists—I’m crossing my fingers for some soupthemed art to go with the crocheted pizza hanging in my cubicle. While the local talent is enough for a visit, all proceeds go to the Community Nursing Services (CNS) Charitable Care Program. It’s tough to resist a foodand-art event that helps CNS provide home and hospice care to Utahns who need it. Each day has two sessions, one from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and another from 5 to 9 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online at cns-cares.org.

-Cincinnati Enquirer

Quote of the Week: “Only the pure of heart can make a good soup.” —Ludwig van Beethoven

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The Politics of Beer How Utahns gained a meaningless 1 percent jump in alcohol content. BY MIKE RIEDEL comments@cityweekly.net @utahbeer

A

stated publicly that he knew the makeup of the Health and Human Services Committee and didn’t believe it had a chance of passing there. He was correct. At the end of the meeting, Rep. Brad Daw, R-Orem, proposed creating a “beer task force” that would study the issue to see whether the lack of 3.2 beer was, in fact, a crisis for grocery store chains—and whether higher ABW limits would be a public safety issue. With no clear support in the House, the bill appeared to be dead. Then chains like Walmart and Maverik, who supported SB132, warned that products would begin to disappear and instructed their lobbyists to threaten a ballot initiative in 2020 to get it done. Not wanting another Prop 2 situation on their hands, legislators struck a deal that would up the ABW of beer to 4 percent (5 percent ABV) instead of 4.8. This will allow big beer

Utahns will enjoy stronger beer—but not as strong as it could have been. producers to maintain their presence in grocery and convenience stores, keeping about 88 percent of their products on the shelves. However, very little will change for local brewers fighting for shelf space. The amended SB132 passed and will likely be signed into law by the governor. The Utah Brewers Guild has taken a lot of heat for standing their ground in support of their unique place in America’s beer industry. We do things differently here in Utah, and for our exploding craft beer scene to continue to thrive, we must support those who are driving this economic engine beyond pushing the needle on some teetotaling legislators’ alcohol meters 1 percent higher. As always, cheers! CW

| CITYWEEKLY.NET |

lot has been going on behind the political scenes regarding beer in Utah. Since the end of Prohibition, Utahns have only known of 3.2 beer in their grocery stores. Later this November, that will change. How did we suddenly get to this rare point in our drinking history? It’s just as convoluted and fucked up as you might imagine. Here’s a brief synopsis of how we gained a 1-percent jump in alcohol by volume—the standard measure—from 4 to 5 percent. Before the 2019 Legislature had even started, we learned that Sen. Jerry Stevenson, RLayton, was introducing a bill to change the definition of beer—upping the standard 3.2 percent alcohol-by-weight limit (4 percent ABV) slightly to 4.8 percent ABW (6 percent

ABV). This proposed legislation blindsided local brewers, who were left out of the process; it was aimed at keeping grocery store shelves stocked with large national brands that are phasing out 3.2 brew across the nation. The Utah Brewers Guild—which represents the interests of most local breweries across the state—scrambled to get ahead of these proposed changes and make sure their interests were heard. The UBG opposed the proposed increase because it would reduce their already-dwindling shelf space in favor of more prominent national brands. The UBG wanted a more level playing field that would have local and national brands compete at no weight or volume limit for grocery store beers. While consumers supported this unlimited-alcohol idea, most suggested through social media forums and in the news that the UBG’s proposal was basically a pipe dream, and that they should get in line with the proposed jump to 4.8, then take up their cause later. A small faction of the UBG that has no real presence in grocery stores favored the 4.8 jump, while the rest of the UBG stood firm on their all-or-nothing stance. Senate Bill 132 sailed through the Labor and Means Committee favorably, with two positive votes in the Senate, until it was hijacked by the Health and Human Services Committee when it came time to hear it in the House. This committee rarely delves into matters of commerce; Stevenson had

MIKE RIEDEL

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And it’s chock full of symbolism—“My album is full of Easter eggs!” Marqueza laughs—from the paralleled affirmations at beginning and end to the sun/moon imagery; and from the concept of Pluto as the lost planet to the image of Marqueza on the album art, naked in fetal position and orbited by flowers. “I feel scared as fuck,” they say. “Producing my album is terrifying. In the album art, I’m actually naked, so there’s a lot of symbolism, like this is literally my heart. But I think that there’s strength in vulnerability. The feeling of, it’s out there, I have nothing to lose. That gives me power.” Above all, Orbit Pluto is “an homage to people who are oppressed in different ways,” Marqueza says. “There are so many different kinds of people in this world, and they all deserve to heal. I think that my own healing process might be personal, but because it is so vulnerable, I’ve watched it reach people outside of my own experience. And that, in a way, is activism.” From the album art, which was made in collaboration with a handful of similarly marginalized local artists, to its sheer existence, Orbit Pluto is a record of resistance and reclamation. Even if you ignore the words, you’re still “listening to a queer person who’s singing,” Marqueza notes. “And that’s pretty powerful because there’s so many of us here who are overlooked. Taking that space and filling up airways is in itself a form of activism—the fact that I’m existing and flourishing in a place like this.” Reaching that place required a long journey, though. “I have depression,” Marqueza says. “I have pretty serious anxiety, and that coupled with all the conditioning I was fighting against, it was a literal battle to finish it.” But despite their complicated relationship with Utah, Salt Lake City has become a place of healing and growth. You can find their album in local record store Graywhale, see them playing at local venues like Gold Blood Collective and Kilby Court and, now that Orbit Pluto is finished, collaborating with other local artists and writing new music. “This is the biggest thing I’ve ever done in my life, but it also feels like the beginning,” Marqueza says. “I’m really excited that Salt Lake City is where that beginning is going to start. It makes me giddy. Salt Lake City, I want to rep it!” CW

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hether you start at the beginning or the end of Orbit Pluto, you’re immediately surrounded by words of affirmation: “This is a love song for people like me/ who are still learning to love our whole selves.” That structure was absolutely intentional, producer and singer Marina Marqueza says, bolstering a message of healing and love both for their own self and their listeners. “It’s also my assertion to the world that, OK, there might be places that don’t want to accept me,” the 27-year-old non-binary artist says about the album. “But I’m going to make it happen for myself. I’m not going to wait for the world to accept me as I am. I’m going to create my own space.” The album was born of Marqueza’s experiences trying to make music within traditional spaces in the Salt Lake City scene, only to end up frustrated and shut out. Marqueza recalls voicing ideas and getting shut down, only to hear the cis white dude in the room offer the same idea five minutes later, to immediate acceptance. “I wanted to make something at least once in my life that [was mine], from start to finish,” they say. “It was my ideas, it was my own passion, no man telling me what to do, just something I self-made to say people like me can do it, and it can be great.” Marqueza has spent most of their life shuttling between Japan and the U.S.; eventually, their LDS family moved to Utah, and the Japanese-Venezuelan musician has traveling the world ever since. They say their mixed ancestry has made them a kind of conundrum in most places. “When I go to Japan, because I’m only half Japanese, most of my culture sees me as foreign,” they say. “And then when I come here, people obviously think I’m a foreigner. I am always feeling out of place. My music has always been an escape and where I go to process that.” Likewise, Marqueza’s non-binary gender identity (they describe themself as a “gender-fluid mermaid” on their Soundcloud page) puts them in a category that is often unrecognizable. “Most bathrooms are male or female, and I’m neither of those things, so where am I supposed to go to the bathroom?” they ask. “The most basic things in society don’t affirm the fact that people like me exist.” Marqueza calls their gender identity and ethnicity a contradiction. “As a non-binary person, I feel like I embody more than one thing,” they say. That sense of a fluid binary is at the root of Orbit Pluto’s structure. “My music is non-binary, which is to say non-genre but multiple genres,” Marqueza says. “Almost beyond genre, I want to say that my music is this watery, ever-changing, beautiful mess of emotions.” The album is entirely self-produced, made mostly with three portable tools: a laptop, a pair of headphones and a mini keyboard. It was also mostly self-taught, at least on the music end—Marqueza learned production techniques on their own over the several years they spent writing and producing it. It’s a sort of dreamy, sexy documentation of Marqueza’s own self-exploration and discovery. “The whole process of making the album was very ingrained with the process of figuring out who I was,” they say.


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SATURDAY 3/30

Laura Jane Grace & The Devouring Mothers, Mercy Union, Control Top

DIY hero, trans activist, best-selling author, songwriter, guitar shredder, culture warrior—all of these labels accurately describe Laura Jane Grace. One of modern music’s fiercest voices, Grace has fronted folk-punk icons Against Me! since the mid-1990s, steering the band from the sweaty dive bars of North Florida to sold-out stadiums around the world. Sure,

Laura Jane Grace

Grace was never shy about her ambition—see 2016 autobiography Tranny: Confessions Of Punk Rock’s Most Infamous Anarchist Sellout— but that confidence also let her rage against the totemic white male infrastructure of rock ’n’ roll on propulsive songs about gender dysphoria and societal injustice. Last year, Grace announced an Against Me! hiatus and a renewed focus on confessional intimacy with her band The Devouring Mothers, whose debut album Bought to Rot mixes the heartland rock of Tom Petty with the teary-eyed poetry of Mountain Goats. But tracks like “The Airplane Song” and “Apocalypse Now (& Later)” still brim with Grace’s trademark honesty; in some instances, the storylines and narratives feel ripped right from her journal. And then there’s “I Hate Chicago,” a sarcastic lodestar that’s somehow become a live favorite even though it finds Grace snarkily shitting on her own adopted hometown. That fact that she’s still tossing off punk anthems a quarter-century after first pissing off her critics is just one reason why this Laura Jane Grace & The Devouring Mothers show is a mustsee. Metro Music Hall, 615 W. 100 South, 7 p.m., $20 presale; $25 day of show, 21+, metromusichall.com

SUNDAY 3/31

Switchfoot, Tyson Motsenbocker, Colony House

In some circles, San Diego’s Switchfoot is best known as a breezy surf-rock band that puts on an annual beach party called the Switchfoot Bro-Am. But there’s far more at

Hand Habits work inside Switchfoot’s immense discography, which recently expanded to 11 studio albums with the release of Native Tongue in January. Rooted in the same kind of unflinching examinations of faith, love, spirituality and crisis that have fueled Switchfoot’s work since the 1990s, Native Tongue finds this Christian band wrestling again with what it means to outwardly embrace your faith. Yes, they’ve won a Grammy for Best Rock Gospel Album, but many listeners might never pick up on the religiosity baked into such easygoing music. Chances are you’ll feel the positivity inherent in songs like “Let it Happen” and “Prodigal Soul,” though; as Switchfoot frontman Jon Foreman told Christian Post earlier this year, “My job is to be honest … That’s the way I want to sing, the way I want to play … It’s not my job to decide what the rest of the church is doing. It’s just my job to be a specific part of the body that I’ve been called to be.” Such sentiments might be hard to swallow for secular fans, until you realize that Switchfoot’s music speaks to the universality of the human condition. Realizing that we’re all just small parts of a beautiful, often-overwhelming whole doesn’t just happen to the Christians among us. Likewise, absorbing Switchfoot’s infectious message of unity delivered through uplifting rock is easier than you think. The Depot, 13 N. 400 West, $35 presale; $37 day of show, all ages, depotslc.com

Switchfoot

JEREMY COWART

Ostrich Elk Buffalo Wild Boar Venison Wagyu

Meg Duffy’s effortless guitar pop might sound placid. But the music this upstate New York native records and releases as Hand Habits doesn’t hide its intense emotional core. That ethos aligns with Duffy’s collaborative work as a guitarist for Kevin Morby, William Tyler and Weyes Blood, similarly evocative songwriters who know how to encase heart-rending stories of human frailty in pleasant, catchy indie pop. Hand Habits’ sophomore full-length, 2019’s placeholder, expands on the insular sonic palette of 2017 debut Wildly Idle (Humble Before the Void). But placeholder still feels rooted in Duffy’s personal life, surveying the pitfalls and passions of relationships both platonic and non-normatively romantic. “The songs on placeholder are about accountability and forgiveness,” Duffy says in a news release for the album. “A big aspect of my songwriting and the way I move through the world depends on my relationships with people.” That movement is evident on songs like “can’t calm down” and “yr heart [reprise],” manifesting itself sometimes with confidence and sometimes with anxiety. “You were a boulder destructive with your anger,” Duffy sings on “what’s the use.” “I’ve seen you move mountains with your eyes.” It’s that kind of startling clarity that lends placeholder its gut-punching power. It’ll be exciting to see how Hand Habits morphs onstage, painting personal anguish with vivid splashes of guitar-driven color. Kilby Court, 741 S. Kilby Court, 7 p.m., $10, all ages, kilbycourt.com

AUBREY TRINNAMEN

3/29 Exotic burgers! FRIDAY Hand Habits, Tomberlin, Harpers

KATIE HOVLAND

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JD McPherson

MONDAY 4/1

JD McPherson, JP Harris

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Smino, EarthGang, Phoelix

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What better way to celebrate The State Room’s 10th anniversary than with roofraising rockabilly maestro JD McPherson? The Oklahoma native’s artistic ascent corresponds nearly perfectly with one of our fair city’s finest venues: off to a fast start in the 2000s, then working through inevitable growing pains before hitting its unapologetic stride. McPherson’s reverence for the past has always struck a nerve with fellow revivalists, while serving as a thorn in the side of critics who complain about nostalgia. But the worn-out denim and greased-back hair was never the point for McPherson; instead of conforming to fashion trends, his love of classic country, jump blues, vintage R&B and old-school rock ’n’ roll felt like the genuine article. On 2017’s Undivided Heart & Soul, he wore that unvarnished identity with pride, singing about how “Style (Is a Losing Game)” while lamenting the “Desperate Love” he found “Under the Spell of City Lights” in his new Nashville home. But McPherson beat his haters to the punch on “Let’s Get Out of Here While We’re Young,” howling in the chorus about how “We’ve worn out all the songs we’ve sung.” It’s a statement of purpose that hews closely to McPherson’s heart; as he said in a news release for Undivided Heart & Soul, “This record was difficult for me to make … It took a lot for me to say that I can’t force these songs to be the way people are expecting.” Sounds a lot like the committed creative vision that The State Room has pursued for a decade while competitors have come and gone. Bring your dancing shoes for what’s sure to be a fierce, fun anniversary party. The State Room, 638 S. State, $30, 21+, thestateroompresents.com

Smino doesn’t suffer fools—himself included. After the St. Louis-born rapper released his sophomore album Noir last November, he told Rolling Stone he was already dissatisfied with the end result. The same went for his 2017 debut blkswn, which attracted the attention of hip-hop heavyweights like T-Pain and SZA. “There was a point when I got to the end of the project where I was like, ‘I hate this shit,’” Smino said. “Then people are like, ‘Oh my God! Breathtaking! Wowzers!’ Oh, you like it?” That restlessness is a necessity in today’s ever-changing rap landscape, where new superstars emerge out of the ether with nothing but a Soundcloud single to their name. Rather than toe the traditional rap line, however, Smino has branched out, in life and in art—moving from his native St. Louis to Chicago, incorporating Southern bounce and neo-soul into his sumptuous slant rhymes and taking 18 months between projects instead of pumping out singles to satisfy the internet-fueled rap machine. “I ain’t aiming at the radio,” Smino told Rolling Stone. “It change so much, if you aim for it, you be behind. It’s running targets. Shoot ahead of them bitches.” Asked about the follow-up to Noir, he answered in the most Smino way possible, too, skewering himself while raising the stakes for what comes next: “My next one after this one is a good chunk done. And I hate my new album right now. So I think it’s about done.” The Complex, 536 W. 100 South, 8 p.m., $25, all ages, thecomplexslc.com

Smino

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WEDNESDAY 4/3

CONCERTS & CLUBS

RYAN AYLSWORTH

Pink, Julia Michaels

THURSDAY 3/28 LIVE MUSIC

Catfish & The Bottlemen (The Depot) Chad & Kristo (Park City Mountain) Cold Hearts + Artificial Aliens (Gold Blood Collective) Dead Cowboys (Umbrella Bars) Ezra Bell (Rye) Lash LaRue (The Corner Store) Matt Calder (Lake Effect) Mythic Valley (Hog Wallow Pub) Nocturnal Habits + Wild Powwers (Kilby Court) Prof + Mac Irv + Cashinova + Willie Wonka (Urban Lounge) Reggae at the Royal feat. Space Kamp + Adlib + G Life (The Royal) Strangelove (Metro Music Hall) Tropicana Thursdays feat. Rumba Libre (Liquid Joe’s)

FRIDAY 3/29 LIVE MUSIC

A.M. Bump (The Bayou) The Christopher Hawley Rollers (The Yes Hell) Chris Bender + Fastback (Silver Lake Lodge) Colt.46 (Outlaw Saloon) Folk Hogan (Ice Haüs) Hand Habits + Tomberlin + Harpers (Kilby Court) see p. 26 J.T. Draper (HandleBar) King Buffalo + Veronica Blue + Heavy

It takes a special kind of chutzpah to name yourself after a color. But when the singer, songwriter and entertainer Alecia Moore adopted her moniker Pink as a teenager, she wasn’t concerned with assuaging critics—or anticipating that, 20 years later, she’d be an international superstar. Wearing her rebellion proudly even as she came up in the Y2K pop machine, Pink’s career has maintained more momentum than that of early contemporaries like Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera. She’s sold more than 15 million albums and 45 million songs since her 2000 debut, Can’t Take Me Home, which injected ferocity into her sugary mix of dance, R&B and electronic pop. Since then, she’s specialized in uplifting, noholds-barred anthems like “Raise Your Glass” and “Just Like Fire” while remaining romantic on radio staples like “Just Give Me a Reason” and “Try.” Last year’s full-length Beautiful Trauma continues that tradition, giving Pink prime airplay with “What About Us” while her accompanying arena tour has allowed the 39-year-old to hone the acrobatic aerial dancing routine that’s become her specialty (look up her performance at the 2010 Grammys on YouTube for a primer). At Vivint Smart Home Arena next week, expect a few takedowns of the beauty-obsessed music industry and jabs at our current political situation—as well as the kind of gritty exhortation she delivered at the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards: “We don’t change,” Pink said in a speech dedicated to her infant daughter. “We take the gravel and the shell and we make a pearl. And we help other people to change so they can see more kinds of beauty.” Kudos to Pink for helping us open our eyes to the real potential of pop music. (Nick McGregor) Vivint Smart Home Arena, 301 W. South Temple, 7:30 p.m., $54-$219, all ages, vivintarena.com Pulp (The Loading Dock Korene Greenwood (Harp and Hound) Live Local Music (A Bar Named Sue) The Pour (Hog Wallow Pub) Problem Daughter (Beehive) Rick Gerber (Deer Valley Resort) Riding Gravity + Citizen Hypocrisy + Az Iz + Joe Rock Show + Damn Dirty Vultures (The Royal) Robyn Hitchcock (The State Room) Scott Foster + Tony Oros Trio (Lake Effect) Shannon Runyon (Legends) Spock Block (The Spur) Spring Stomp (Brewskis) The Utah County Swillers (Garage on Beck)

SATURDAY 3/30 LIVE MUSIC

Anderson East + Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds (Park City Mountain) Buddy Guy + Jimmie Vaughan (Eccles Theater) The Coverdogs (Brewskis) Charles Ellsworth (Garage on Beck) Cherry Thomas (Harp and Hound) Che Zuro (Deer Valley Resort) Che Zuro (The Yes Hell) Christ Bender + Fastback (Deer Valley Resort) Colt.46 (Outlaw Saloon) Dad Bod + Horrible Penny + Emma Par (The Beehive) The Fitness Marshall + Backup Booties

RANDY'S RECORD SHOP

+ Haley Jordan + Allison Florea (The Complex) Kings Cardinal (Canyons Village) Laura Jane Grace & The Devouring Mothers + Mercy Union + Control Top (Metro Music Hall) see p. 26 Live Local Music (A Bar Named Sue) Live Trio (The Red Door) Metalachi + Folk Hogan (Urban Lounge) Morgan Wallen (The Depot) Murphy & The Giant (Johnny’s on Second) Mythic Valley (HandleBar) The Number Ones feat. David Halliday (The Bayou) Puddle of Mudd (The Royal) Shuffle (The Spur) Space Jesus + Buku + Huxley Anne + EasyBaked (The Complex) Spazmatics (Liquid Joe’s) St. Nobody (Gold Blood Collective) Sydnie Keddington + Marmalade Chill (Lake Effect) Tender + Jane Holiday (Kilby Court)

DJ, OPEN MIC, SESSION, PIANO LOUNGE Dance Music (Chakra Lounge) DJ Brisk (Bourbon House) DJ Jski (The Spur) DJ Latu (The Green Pig) DJ Soul Pause (Twist) Gothic + Industrial + Dark ’80s w/ DJ Courtney (Area 51) DJ Spryte (Downstairs) Dueling Pianos feat. Troy & Mike and Dave & JC (Tavernacle)

Scandalous Saturdays w/ DJ Logik (Lumpy’s Highland) Sky Saturdays w/ DJ Matty Mo (Sky) Top 40 + EDM + Alternative w/ DJ Twitch (Area 51)

SUNDAY 3/31 LIVE MUSIC

Andrew Wiscombe (Garage on Beck) BroBand (Park City Mountain) Greet Death + Lowfaith + Glume + Corner Case (Beehive) Javi’s 40th Birthday feat. Scenic Byway + Typefunk + MCFVTED (Urban Lounge) The Lazlos (Gracie’s) Live Bluegrass (Club 90) Olivia O’Brien (Kilby Court) Switchfoot + Tyson Motsenbocker + Colony House (The Depot) see p. 26

MONDAY 4/1 LIVE MUSIC

Dee Dee Darby Duffin Quintet (Peery’s Egyptian Theatre) JD McPherson + JP Harris (The State Room) see p. 28 Pick Pocket + The Boys Ranch + Say Hey + The 131ers (Urban Lounge) Streetcorner Boogie (Park City Mountain) Telekinesis + Sontalk + Color Animal (Kilby Court) Triggers & Slips (Umbrella Bar)

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TROLLEY WING CO.

A change in season calls for a change in beer. Last month, an evening might have called for nut brown ales and steak, but now a better call might be an 801 Pilsner and finger foods. I’ve been meaning to try Trolley Wing Co. since last year, when I met Jeff, owner of the Sugar House location, while out and about reporting another BarFly. And although he wasn’t here to see it, I kept my promise. (The Trolley Wing Co. van with flames painted on it was also a deal sealer.) This 2017 Best Of Utah Reader’s Choice winner had me sold when I perused the menu and became immersed in all the vegan options. Greeted by a coworker whose name I didn’t remember, I found myself stuck in that awkward spot. “Hey, it’s you,” I said, stalling until the bartender arrived. I settled in with my mystery coworker, watching the first round of March Madness on the giant flat-screen TVs mingled with Trolley Wing Co. sports memorabilia and engraved steins. Prior to my visit, I didn’t understand the endless possibilities vegan wings offer—or that they’d end up being finger-licking delicious. You might say, “Rachelle, you can’t have chicken wings without chicken—what kind of poser are you?” I, too, was once like that, until I gave Trolley’s vegan Cajun honey BBQ a try, with a side of vegan ranch. The sauces and spices blended perfectly with a cold brew, and after my finger-licking-good experience, I don’t even see a reason to go back to real chicken. Of course, if you want that, Trolley Wing Co.’s got it too—and it’s baked, never fried. (Rachelle Fernandez) Trolley Wing Co., 2148 S. 900 East, Ste. 5, 801-538-0745, trolleywingco.com

TUESDAY 4/2

WEDNESDAY 4/3

LIVE MUSIC

LIVE MUSIC

Ayla Nereo + Elijah Ray + Amber Lily (Kilby Court) Big Bite + Gamma World + Muzzle Tung (Urban Lounge) Dr. Bob (Umbrella Bar) Plini + Mestis + Dave Mackay (In the Venue) The Proper Way (Park City Mountain) R.Ariel + Josaleigh Pollett + Nicky Va (Diabolical Records) Smino + EarthGang + Phoelix (The Complex) see p. 28 The Violet Temper + The Salt, The Sea, The Sun God + Tycoon Machete (Metro Music Hall) Trevor Hall (The Depot)

Bruce Music (Park City Mountain) The Hardy Brothers (Gracie’s) Hop Along + Summer Cannibals + City Ghost (Urban Lounge) J.S. Ondara + Cat Clyde (The State Room) Jack & Jack (The Depot) Jennifer Bate + Nicolas Giusti (Gallivan Center) The Last Bison + Mythic Valley + The Backyard Revival (The Loading Dock) Lorin Walker Madsen (Hog Wallow Pub) Moods (Metro Music Hall) Pink + Julia Michaels (Vivint Smart Home Arena) see p. 30 Snyderville Station (Umbrella Bar) Wicca Phase Springs Eternal + Horse Head + Mirsy (Kilby Court)


DON’T HIBERNATE, GET OUT AND LISTEN TO LIVE MUSIC!

Thursday, March 28

Chad & Kristo

Park City Mountain/ PayDay Pad Free Show Show at 3:00 PM Thursday, March 28

Lash LaRue

Saturday, March 30

Park City Mountain/ PayDay Pad Free Show Show at 2:00 PM

Dead Cowboys Umbrella Bar At Canyons Village Free Show Show at 3:00 PM Friday, March 29

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Anderson East w/ Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds

Thursday, March 28

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Whiskey........ like liquid Sunshine

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CINEMA

Taking the Red Pill

On its 20th anniversary, a look at The Matrix as an awakening of trans identity.

M

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The trans reading, which has increased with the fact the Wachowskis are trans, precedes even the “medical transition” portion of the story that takes place after the red pill. In that pre-awakening double life, Neo’s role as a hacker puts him on the outside of mainstream society already, with certain feelings he cannot put into words about how he feels amiss in the modern world. Neither Lana nor Lilly Wachowski were out as trans women at the time of The Matrix’s release, and even though the mostly reclusive duo continued to be credited as a pair of brothers throughout the series, they have since publicly reflected on their trans experiences predating their filmmaking. Much like Neo, both struggled with feeling they were outsiders, but had yet to find the words and direction that later happened for them as they publicly and medically transitioned. Ultimately, they have worked on presenting the trans experience through trans characters, such as in their recently finished Netflix series Sense8, but the allegory and symbolism found in their most influential and popular creation still remains very much adopted by the trans community. There will be many anniversary pieces on The Matrix, but it is important to center on the people who created the film that became a groundbreaking blockbuster, and to consider that they were trans women. This was not by happenstance; many visual and spoken signifiers of trans reality exist throughout the film. Celebrating The Matrix also means celebrating two of the most significant and influential trans filmmakers in film history. CW

DRIVERS WANTED

Keanu Reeves in The Matrix

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trans people as narratives of transformation, a second body. The Matrix is very much part of this lineage of sci-fi where worlds, consciousness and bodies are awakened. The film’s protagonist, Thomas A. Anderson (Keanu Reeves), is a desk jockey computer programmer by day and a hacker by night. Little does he know his double life is being surveilled by multiple parties, including the agents (best personified by Hugo Weaving’s captivatingly stilted Agent Smith) and a group of other hackers led by Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne). Morpheus gives Anderson the name Neo and tells him he is the messianic “One” to help them fight against the Matrix, an artificial intelligence-created global simulation where humans have been enslaved by machines and manipulated into thinking they are just living normal lives. Morpheus offers Neo a proposition: Return to life as he previously knew it by taking the blue pill, or take the red pill and join him and the others to fight against the Matrix. Neo chooses the red one, and the series begins. Neo’s hero’s journey doesn’t fit neatly in the archetype Joseph Campbell popularized. It is stranger and more specific. By taking the red pill, Neo is reborn, waking plugged into a pod via tubes, naked, covered in gook. This is Neo’s entry into the “real world”; he is physically altered so he can bend time and space and trains to optimize these heightened senses and skills. Morpheus takes him through the process of “passing” without detection in the Matrix with a program called Construct. Neo, Morpheus and the group of hackers can reenter the Matrix to “unplug” more humans to rebel against the Machines. That battle to emancipate humanity is the foundation of the entire trilogy.

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arch 31 marks the 20th anniversary of the release of The Matrix. The first of a groundbreaking and influential sci-fi film trilogy has lingered in the public consciousness for its action sequences, its view of the way technology plays a pivotal role in modern life, and its notion of life as a simulation, with acceptance or denial of that false reality represented by the blue pill/red pill binary. The latter point has been co-opted by men’s rights activists to politicize their ideas that men are repressed—which is ironic, given that the filmmakers behind The Matrix, Lana and Lilly Wachowski, are two trans women. And even more ironic, The Matrix is one of the easiest films by the Wachowskis to view through a transgender lens. The films of 1999 have been rightfully characterized as an embarrassment of riches in terms of quality. That bounty included some notable works in transgender cinema, with Kimberly Peirce’s Boys Don’t Cry and Pedro Almodóvar’s All About My Mother (featuring trans cabaret artist Antonia San Juan in the female ensemble) winning Oscars. Even in films without explicitly trans characters, questions of gender identity were in the ether, such as when Cameron Diaz’ character in Spike Jonze’s Being John Malkovich briefly considers a sex change after feeling so comfortable in the mind of actor John Malkovich (that plot point is never picked up or acknowledged again in the film). Less memorable, but still notable, Joel Schumacher’s Flawless features a drag queen played by Philip Seymour Hoffman seeking the financial means to medically transition. These films are all pretty imperfect when it comes to presenting a multidimensional trans narrative. Such a dearth of good trans cinema often has trans people attaching themselves to films on an allegorical level. Science-fiction tales dating back to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein have appealed to

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BY CADEN MARK GARDNER comments@cityweekly.net @cadenmgardner


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36 | MARCH 28, 2019

CINEMA CLIPS MOVIE TIMES AND LOCATIONS AT CITYWEEKLY.NET

NEW THIS WEEK Film release schedules are subject to change. Reviews online at cityweekly.net THE AFTERMATH B.5 Rachael Morgan (Keira Knightley) arrives in war-ravaged Hamburg in 1946 to join her occupying British army officer husband (Jason Clarke) living in the stately manor of architect Stephen Lubert (Alexander Skarsgård). The house is fetishized by the film in precisely the same way the suffering of survivors in the city is all but ignored; postwar upheaval is merely a cheap backdrop to two beautiful people getting it on. It’s not even a matter of suspense that the movie is just waiting to get to sexytimes between Rachael and Stephen—yet their putatively illicit affair is disappointingly unerotic. The film disappoints even as pure melodrama. Rachael is a passive character, more pushed around by others, and by events, than a woman who must make a choice—between the husband who isn’t a bad guy but from whom she has become estranged over the course of the war, and the exotic, socially dangerous new lover. A legitimately romantic, tragic movie about Knightley and Skarsgård enjoying steamy unapproved bedplay would be very welcome. This ain’t it. Opens March 29 at theaters valleywide. (R)—MaryAnn Johanson THE BEACH BUM [not yet reviewed] The misadventures of a rebellious aging stoner (Matthew McConaughey). Opens March 29 at Broadway Centre Cinemas. (R)

DUMBO [not yet reviewed] Live-action remake of Disney’s tale of the baby elephant with special earborne talents. Opens March 29 at theaters valleywide. (PG) HOTEL MUMBAI BB.5 Movies built around real-life tragedy flirt dangerously with exploitation; this one’s visceral effectiveness too rarely translates into genuine emotional connection to the victims. On Nov. 26, 2008, Pakistani terrorists launched a multi-venue campaign of violence in India, including at the upscale Taj Mahal Palace Hotel in Mumbai. The narrative here focuses on those who survived the initial assault, as employees like Sikh waiter Arjun (Dev Patel) try to keep guests alive and hidden from the gunmen. Director Anthony Maras spends a lot of time on the mechanics of the terrorists’ plans, occasionally suggesting the extent to which they were patsies of their ringleader. There’s strong material surrounding Arjun’s calm under pressure, and the simple—if grossly manipulative—tension of someone trying to remain undiscovered while silencing a crying baby. Yet most attempts at generating sympathy for individuals—a married couple (Armie Hammer and Nazanin Boniadi), or Arjun’s anxious wife at home—come off feeling superficial. By the end, it’s hard to see the narrative conveying much more than “Well, that was terrifying.” Opens March 29 at theaters valleywide. (R)—Scott Renshaw THE MUSTANG BBB Matthias Schoenaerts brings the same coiled, damaged masculinity that sparked his performance in Bullhead to another story about a man trying to control his violent nature. He plays Roman, a Nevada convict whose comment to a prison therapist that “I’m not good with people” is a gross understatement. He finds himself drawn to the prison’s program of taming and training wild mustangs so they can be sold, rather than euthanized, as a way to cull the herds. The metaphor isn’t exactly subtle, and director Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre struggles at times through a clunky

narrative that also involves Roman’s contentious relationship with his daughter (Gideon Adlon) and the forced smuggling of ketamine. It’s much better when the focus is on Roman’s relationship with his horse and the coaching he receives from the program’s grizzled supervisor (Bruce Dern). Schoenaerts has a gift for conveying pent-up rage while completely silent—and as obvious as it might be that he identifies with a horse that can’t easily be tamed, watching him try proves surprisingly emotional. Opens March 29 at Broadway Centre Cinemas. (R)—SR UNPLANNED [not yet reviewed] Fact-based story of a Planned Parenthood clinic director who becomes an anti-abortion activist. Opens March 29 at theaters valleywide. (R)

SPECIAL SCREENINGS ARCTIC At Park City Film Series, March 29-30, 8 p.m.; April 1, 6 p.m. (R) THE WILD BUNCH At Main Library, April 2, 7 p.m. (R)

CURRENT RELEASES GLORIA BELL BBB Sebastián Lelio remakes his own 2013 Chilean feature Gloria, about a 50-something empty-nester divorcée (Julianne Moore) who begins a new relationship. Lelio builds rich thematic material into the narrative, as Gloria feels the pressure not to be alone. Moore brings to that character a different quality than Paulina García did in the original—softer, more genuinely uncertain of what kind of life she wants for herself—which makes this Gloria a bit less complicated, as does the decision to be less explicit than the original about showing less-than-perfect bodies being sexual. As satisfying as this story is in centering the emotional

journey of a woman “of a certain age,” it’s also interesting to see a variation in which that woman isn’t letting loose quite as much frustration. (R)—SR

US BB.5 Jordan Peele can’t quite re-create Get Out’s improbable alchemy of comedy, deft allegorical writing and effective horror filmmaking. The story follows a family—Adelaide (Lupita Nyong’o), Gabe (Winston Duke) and their two children—on a vacation where they find themselves tormented by a quartet that looks exactly like them. Superficial pleasures abound, from Nyong’o’s alternately terrifying and terrified dual performance, to set pieces that inspire both laughs and gasps. But there’s a frustrating hole where the thematic center should be, particularly after Peele spins off into a climax that undercuts everything he might be trying to say about the chickens of America’s ignored underclass coming home to roost. The filmmaker gets so ambitious about building a mythology for his jokes and scares that he appears unable to settle on one idea to pull them all together. (R)—SR

THE WEDDING GUEST BB Dev Patel nails the slow burn in writer/director Michael Winterbottom’s thriller; the rest of the movie around him burns too slowly. Patel plays a mysterious character named Jay, who travels from England to Pakistan to abduct bride-to-be Samira (Radhika Apte). The details behind that abduction unfold gradually, with the relationship between Jay and Samira complicating in a variety of ways. Those ways just aren’t interesting enough to justify a narrative that gets stuck in a loop of “drive somewhere, check in at hotel under assumed name, make a phone call, maybe obtain new false ID, drive to next place.” It’s especially frustrating when Winterbottom seems to be building toward a shift in the dynamic between his two main characters that never comes. The enigmatic intensity Patel brings to his character deserves a payoff more substantial than this wispy story can support. (R)—SR

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ARIES (March 21-April 19): Kermit the Frog from Sesame Street is the world’s most famous puppet. He has recorded songs, starred in films and TV shows, and written an autobiography. His image has appeared on postage stamps, and he has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Kermit’s beginnings were humble, however. When his creator Jim Henson first assembled him, he consisted of Henson’s mom’s green coat and two halves of a white ping pong ball. I mention this, Aries, because the current astrological omens suggest that you, too, could make a puppet that will one day have great influence. APRIL FOOL! I half-lied. Here’s the whole truth: Now isn’t a favorable time to start work on a magnificent puppet. But it is a perfect moment to launch the rough beginnings of a project that’s well-suited for your unique talents.

more grilled cheese sandwiches would motivate you to have more sex. But I wasn’t lying when I said that you should have more sex than usual. And I wasn’t lying when I said you will reap huge benefits from having as much sex as possible. (P.S. If you don’t have a partner, have sex with your fantasies or yourself.)

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Studies show that people who love grilled cheese sandwiches engage in more sexual escapades than those who don’t gorge on grilled cheese sandwiches. So I advise you to eat a lot of grilled cheese sandwiches, because then you will have more sex than usual. And that’s important, because you are now in a phase when you will reap huge healing benefits from having as much sex as possible. APRIL FOOL! I lied when I implied that eating

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Now is a favorable time to disguise yourself as a bland nerd with no vivid qualities, or a shy wallflower with no strong opinions, or a polite wimp who prefers to avoid adventure. Please don’t even consider doing anything that’s too interesting or controversial. APRIL FOOL! I lied. The truth is, I hope you’ll do the opposite of what I suggested. I think it’s time to express your deep authentic self with aggressive clarity. Be brave and candid and enterprising.

1. Paintball sound 2. One-eyed female on "Futurama" 3. Hiked 4. X-ray ____ (novelty item) 5. Southernmost U.S. state 6. Parody 7. Natural salve 8. French/Belgian river 9. "Can I get a hand here?!" 10. "That ____ last year" 11. "Stop fooling around!" 12. Subj. for CNBC 13. Word on two Monopoly squares

54. Zeniths 55. "Hah! Done!" 57. Rights org. led by MLK Jr. 58. "Pick me! Pick me!" 59. Bank annoyance 60. Impulse 61. "Would ____ to you?" 62. Earth Day's mo. 63. Shade of green

Last week’s answers

MARCH 28, 2019 | 37

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): You don’t have to run faster than the bear that’s chasing you. You just have to run faster than the slowest person the bear is chasing. OK? So don’t worry! APRIL FOOL! What I just said wasn’t your real horoscope. I hope you know me well enough to understand that I would never advise you to save your own ass by betraying or sacrificing someone else. It’s also important to note that the bear I mentioned is entirely metaphorical in nature. So please ignore what I said earlier. However, I do want you to know that there are effective ways to elude the symbolic bear that are also honorable. To discover them, meditate on calming down the beastly bear-like qualities in yourself.

DOWN

21. Neither's partner 22. Center of a poker table 26. Midwife coworker 27. Not in a bottle or can 28. Donkey 29. Outdo 30. Actor Chaney of "The Phantom of the Opera" 31. Super Bowl of 2018 32. Graveside container 33. Light lunch choice 34. "Melrose ____" 35. Punt returner's option 39. Nickelodeon's "Kenan & ____" 40. "____ live and breathe!" 41. Election-influencing org. 42. Took a breather 47. Ruffian, to a Brit 48. Acela Express operator 49. Pique 50. Dog in Francis Barraud's painting "His Master's Voice" 53. Practice piece at a conservatory

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LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Now is an excellent time to join an exotic religion. How about the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, which believes that true spiritual devotion requires an appreciation of satire? Or how about Discordianism, which worships the goddess of chaos and disorder? Then there’s the United Church of Bacon, whose members exult in the flavor of their favorite food. (Here’s a list of more: tinyurl.com/weirdreligions.) APRIL FOOL! I wasn’t entirely truthful. It’s accurate to say that now is a great time to reinvigorate and transform your spiritual practice. But it’s better if you figure that out by yourself. There’s no need to get your ideas from a bizarre cult.

1. Snow when it's around 32°F 6. Greet someone cordially 11. Fell for the joke 14. Toondom's ____ Pig 15. "It's nobody ____ business" 16. Org. whose mission involves emissions 17. Toondom's Pepé ____ 18. Many radio songs after Thanksgiving 19. Part of two major-league team names 20. AP English Literature subject? 23. Tiny amount 24. Debt note 25. Novus ____ seclorum (Great Seal phrase) 28. AP Environmental Science subject? 33. Nos. at the beach 36. "Strangers on a Train" film genre 37. Completely asleep 38. AP U.S. Geography subject? 43. My ____, Vietnam 44. Jacob's twin 45. "Hurry!" 46. AP Art History subject? 51. Style influenced by Cubism 52. X-ray alternative 53. Break a hunger strike 56. AP Music Theory subject? 62. Suitable 64. Cricket's sound 65. Large column of smoke 66. Workout target, for short 67. Something gays and straights have in common? 68. What can get you down? 69. Cheerleader's cheer 70. Where rouge goes 71. Older brother of Malcolm on "Malcolm in the Middle"

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LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): If you ever spend time at the McMurdo Station in Antarctica, you’ll get a chance to become a member of the 300 Club. To be eligible, you wait till the temperature ouside drops to minus 100 degrees Fahrenheit. When it does, you spend 20 minutes in a sauna heated to 200 degrees. Then you exit into the snow and ice wearing nothing but white rubber boots and run a few hundred feet to a ceremonial pole and back. In so doing, you expose your naked body to a swing of 300 degrees. According to my astrological analysis, now is an ideal time to pull off this feat. APRIL FOOL! I lied. I’m not really TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Taurus businessman Chuck Feeney made a huge fortune as the urging you to join the 300 Club. On the other hand, I do think it’s a entrepreneur who co-developed duty-free shopping. But at age favorable phase to go to extremes for an authentically good cause. 87, he lives frugally, having given away $8 billion to philanthropic causes. He doesn’t even own a house or a car. In accordance with SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): astrological omens, I invite you to follow his lead in the coming Scientific research shows that if you arrange to get bitten by thouweeks. Be unreasonably generous and exorbitantly helpful. APRIL sands of mosquitoes in a relatively short time, you make yourself FOOL! I exaggerated a bit. While it’s true that now is an extra favor- immune. Forever after, mosquito bites won’t itch you. Now would able time to bestow blessings on everyone, you shouldn’t go over- be an excellent time for you to launch such a project. APRIL FOOL! I lied. I don’t really think you should do that. On the contrary. You board. Make sure your giving is artful, not careless or compulsive. should scrupulously avoid irritations and aggravations, especially little ones. Instead, immerse yourself in comfort and ease. Be as GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Now is a perfect time to start learning the Inuktitut language free from vexation as you have ever been! spoken by the indigenous people of Eastern Canada. Here are some key phrases to get you underway. 1. UllusiuKattagit inosek: SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Celebrate your life! 2. Pitsialagigavit, piggogutivagit!: Because If allowed to do what comes naturally, two rabbits and their you’re doing amazing things, I’m proud of you! 3. Nalligijauvutit: immediate descendants will produce 1,300 new rabbits in 12 You are loved! 4. Kajusitsiatuinnagit: Keep it up! APRIL FOOL! months’ time. In five years, their offspring would amount to I lied. Now isn’t really a better time than any other to learn the 94 million. I suspect that you will approach this level of fertility Inuktitut language. But it is an important time to talk to yourself in the next four weeks, at least in a metaphorical sense. APRIL using phrases like those I mentioned. You need to be extra kind FOOL! I stretched the truth a bit. There’s no way you will produce more than 100 good new ideas and productions and gifts. and super positive toward yourself. At the most, you’ll generate a mere 50. CANCER (June 21-July 22): When he was 20 years old, Greek military leader Alexander the CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Great began to conquer the world. By age 30, he ruled the vast The weather is warm year-round and the crime rate is low on territory between Greece and northwest India. Never shy about Pitcairn, a remote South Pacific island that is a 30-hour boat extolling his own glory, he named 70 cities after himself. I offer his ride away from the nearest airport. The population has been example as a model for you. Now is a favorable time to name clouds dwindling in recent years, however, which is why the governafter yourself, as well as groves of trees, stretches of highway, buses, ment offers foreigners free land if they choose to relocate. You fire hydrants, parking spaces and rocks. APRIL FOOL. I got a bit might want to consider taking advantage of this opportunity. carried away. It’s true that now is a good time to assert your author- APRIL FOOL! I was exaggerating. It’s true that you could get ity, extend your clout and put your unique stamp on every situation. major health benefits by taking a sabbatical from civilization. But there’s no need to be so drastic about it. But I don’t recommend that you name entire cities after yourself.

ACROSS

No math is involved. The grid has numbers, but nothing has to add up to anything else. Solve the puzzle with reasoning and logic. Solving time is typically 10 to 30 minutes, depending on your skill and experience.

Go to realastrology.com for Rob Brezsny’s expanded weekly audio horoscopes and daily text-message horoscopes. Audio horoscopes also available by phone at 877-873-4888 or 900-950-7700.

AP

BY DAVID LEVINSON WILK

Complete the grid so that each row, column, diagonal and 3x3 square contain all of the numbers 1 to 9.

B R E Z S N Y

© 2019

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St. George is America’s fastest-growing metro area, according to U.S. Census data, swelling in population by almost 4 percent last year. Why is that, do you think? It’s certainly become retirement heaven for many Baby Boomers, in part because the climate is similar to Arizona’s. It still has a small-town feel, old and new architecture, small local businesses and the inevitable chains. Plus it’s 120 miles from Las Vegas and 42 miles from Zion National Park. The scenic area was named in honor of Mormon apostle George A. Smith. He was known as “The Potato Saint” because he urged early settlers to eat raw, unpeeled potatoes to cure scurv y. Come to find out, potatoes are a great source of vitamin C, a cure for scurv y. The first people that inhabited the area were the Anasazi, who grew crops along the Virgin River. I’ve hiked up a hill behind a gas station at the south end of town and seen many of their pictographs on boulders. The next people to settle were the Paiutes, followed by various Spanish explorers and trappers. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints sent an experimental mission to the area to see if it was good for growing cotton. Turns out, it wasn’t. But the St. George area still became known as “Utah’s Dixie” and to this day has a nickname that recalls the cotton-growing states. The Potato Saint never actually lived there, but he sent people to farm the land, set up businesses and ran the church in that part of the state. The church built a temple in 1877 which can be seen from most of the town and today has become a handy manmade directional landmark. Since those early days, St. George has just kept growing. If you’re not retired yet, big employers there include SkyWest Airlines, Dixie College, the now-famous Squatty Potty (best poop of your life!), as well as Walmart, Sunroc, Costco and, of course, many different home builders like Ence Homes, Sullivan Homes, Bangerter Homes and SunRiver. The housing crunch has hit the area hard for home buyers, and rental properties for blue collar workers are scarce. I have heard from several local realtors that zero rental properties are available, and if a sign or ad does go up, 10 to 20 people try to outbid each other to sign a lease. Airbnb has also factored into low housing inventory, due to high demand for temporary rentals from tourists visiting nearby Zion National Park. The city is only a quick five-hour-ish drive or one-hour flight from Salt Lake City.  n

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Religious Interpretation Brewery worker Del Hall of Newtown, Ohio, is taking an unusual approach to fasting for Lent this year. Hall, who works at the Fifty West brewery in Dayton, is going on an all-beer-only-beer diet until Easter. He told WKRC-TV that monks from the 1600s inspired him. “(T)hey would take a popular style of beer in Germany, bock beer, make it extra hearty and that would be their liquid bread, and that’s what they call it,” Hall said. He is, however, including all types of beer in his Lenten fast. “(T)his seems very daunting,” Hall noted. “I’m just curious if I’m up to the challenge.” He is planning to check in with his doctor during the fast.

WEIRD

Going Out in Style Drivers along southbound Interstate 880 in Hayward, Calif., were pleasantly surprised on March 4 when they saw $20 bills flying through the air. Some motorists stopped to collect as many as they could, but the mystery lay in where they came from. The next day, members of a family, who wished to remain anonymous, admitted to KTVU that they tossed $500 worth of bills into the air as they drove back from a funeral; the unexpected windfall was intended to honor their deceased family member. It’s an “Oakland thing,” one person explained. Scrooge Report As Clayton Lucas, 25, was being transported through East Deer Township, Pa., from a halfway house to a treatment class on the morning of March 4 (69 days after Christmas), the van driver regaled him with Christmas songs. Turns out Lucas isn’t a fan of holiday tunes, so he reached into the front seat and began choking the unnamed driver, who was strangled almost to the point of losing consciousness, according to police. KDKA reported that another driver flagged down a state trooper and alerted him about an altercation happening on the shoulder of the highway. After a struggle to get handcuffs on Lucas, the officer deposited him in the Allegheny County Jail, where he will face multiple charges.

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People Different From Us He’s been dubbed the Naked Carpenter for renovating his home wearing only a tool belt, but Robert Jenner, 43, of Snodland, Kent, England, seems to have crossed the line with local jurors. Jenner was convicted on March 12 of 10 counts of indecent exposure in Canterbury Crown Court. Jenner’s nudist habits have put him on the wrong side of law enforcement before, reported Metro News, but this time his offenses included delivering packages for a courier service wearing trousers with a hole cut out of the crotch, exposing himself to a teenage girl, and running past a children’s play area while wearing “see-through trousers.” Jenner’s attorney, Kate Chidgey, tried to explain her client’s behavior: “It was not his intention that people were caused distress by what he did or didn’t wear.” She added that he strongly believes in “naturism.” Crime Report Elysia Johnson, 21, apparently needed some alone time on March 9, so she took a full cart and a six-pack of Stella Artois beer into a dressing room at Target in Lathrop, Calif., where she hunkered down for more than an hour, according to police. Johnson finished all the beer and left the store—with about $200 worth of unpurchased merchandise. A loss prevention officer stopped her and she was taken to the San Joaquin County Jail, where she was held on $60,000 bail. Johnson also had three outstanding warrants, reported KTXL News. Bright Idea Looking for a way to banish evil spirits? Check in to The Lighthouse, near Frome, Somerset, England, where a group called Universal Medicine will help you burp your troubles away. The Mirror reports that the group, founded by Serge Benhayon in 1999, ran up against the law last year in Sydney, Australia, where a civil court declared it a “socially harmful cult” and found that it makes false claims about healing. Members are told what to eat and who to associate with. A girl named Kasha told the BBC her mum joined the cult when the girl was 12. “She started burping ridiculously and she said, ‘I’m just burping out bad spirits,’” Kasha said. “She’s still my mum and I love her. But she’s never going to be the person that she was.” Benhayon, a failed tennis coach who claims to be the reincarnation of Leonardo da Vinci, still lives in Australia but visits The Lighthouse twice a year. Send tips to weirdnewstips@amuniversal.com

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MARCH 28, 2019 | 39

WHERE REAL GAY MEN MEET

Anger Management: Wedding Edition As a wedding party of 30 guests gathered on the beach at Oceanfront Park in Ocean Ridge, Fla., on March 3, Jeffery E. Alvord, 27, and his bride posed for photos before the ceremony. Trouble erupted when a 24-year-old man would not move from his spot on the beach to make way for the photos, The Palm Beach Post reported. In fact, Alvord told police, the man wouldn’t relocate even after being offered $50 and became “very belligerent,” so Alvord punched him in the nose. The victim told Ocean Ridge police a groomsman held him while Alvord punched him three times, and the police report noted that the victim’s “nose appears to be out of place sitting more to the right of his face,” and his glasses were broken. Alvord spent what would have been his wedding night in the Palm Beach County Jail and faces charges of aggravated battery and criminal mischief. He and his fiancee married the next day, shortly after his release from jail.

Spring Chickens

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Idiom in Action In Ljubljana, Slovenia, an unnamed 21-year-old woman and a 29-year-old relative were arrested for insurance fraud, police announced on March 11, after the young woman cut off her hand in order to collect almost 400,000 euros in insurance payments. Two other relatives were released in the case. The four had recently signed up with five different insurance companies for life and injury coverage. “With one of her accomplices, she intentionally amputated the hand at the wrist with a circular saw, hoping to stage it as an accident,” said

police spokesman Valter Zrinski, according to the Daily Mail. The group left the hand behind when they went to the hospital, intending to ensure a permanent disability, said police, but doctors at the Ljubljana University Medical Center were able to retrieve and re-attach it. The woman and her accomplice face up to eight years in prison.

We sell homes to all saints, sinners, sisterwives &

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Let’s Make a Deal In Granville County, N.C., Melissa Anne Godshall, 31, and her boyfriend, Robert J. Kennerley, 46, were minding their own business, panhandling at the side of the road, when a car pulled over and Godshall received an unusual proposal: Levan Lomtatidze, 44, from the nation of Georgia, would pay her $12,000, give her a car and make rent payments for her if she would marry him so he could stay in the United States. She agreed, according to U.S. Attorney Robert J. Higdon Jr., and Kennerley served as a witness at their nuptials. Alas, this romantic partnership was not to be: On March 7, Godshall and Lomtatidze were indicted by a federal grand jury and charged with conspiracy to commit marriage fraud, marriage fraud, visa fraud and making false statements in immigration proceedings, the Raleigh News and Observer reported. If convicted, the two face 30 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Best man Kennerley also faces prison time and fines for aiding and abetting marriage fraud.

BY T HE EDITO R S AT A ND RE WS M cMEEL


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40 | MARCH 28, 2019

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City Weekly March 29, 2019  

Mind the Gap

City Weekly March 29, 2019  

Mind the Gap