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in this issue Issue 18_44 /// October 31-November 6, 2018

San Antonio Current Publisher: Michael Wagner Editor-in-Chief: Greg Jefferson

Editorial

Senior Editors: Bryan Rindfuss, Jessica Elizarraras Art Director: Carlos Aguilar Food & Nightlife Editor: Jessica Elizarraras Staff Writers: Chris Conde, Sanford Nowlin Digital Content Editor: Sarah Martinez Contributors: Alexis Alvarez , Ron Bechtol, Erik Casarez, James Courtney, Callie Enlow, Jose Garza, Dan R. Goddard, Alejandra Lopez Gonzalez, Lance Higdon, Steven G. Kellman, Hannah Lorence, Michelle C. Lorentzen, Abby Mangel, Kiko Martínez, Jeremy Martin, Kelly Merka Nelson, M. Solis, Gary Sweeney, J.D. Swerzenski, Kelsey Valadez, Erin Winch Editorial Interns: Clarence Beal, Lori Salazar, Victoria Wilson

Advertising

Sales Director: Mallory Jochen Senior Multimedia Account Executive: Sarah Estrada Account Executive: Krystal Little, April Miller

Marketing and Events

Marketing and Events Director: Cassandra Yardeni Events Manager: Chelsea Bourque Marketing and Events Interns: Alec Salazar

Creative Services

Creative Services Manager: Tina Corbeil Graphic Designer: Samantha Serna Graphic Design Interns: Elyse Andrews, Michelle Moreno, Shelby Pinto,Noemi Solis

Circulation

Circulation Manager: Justin Giles

Business

Operations Manager: Sarah Estrada Business Support Specialist: Samantha Lopez

Euclid Media Group

Chief Executive Officer: Andrew Zelman Chief Operating Officers: Chris Keating, Michael Wagner VP of Digital Services: Stacy Volhein Creative Director: Tom Carlson Digital Operations Coordinator: Jaime Monzon Senior Marketing and Events Director: Cassandra Yardeni www.euclidmediagroup.com National Advertising: Voice Media Group 1-888-278-9866, vmgadvertising.com San Antonio Current 915 Dallas San Antonio, Texas 78215 sacurrent.com Editorial - (210) 227-0044 / Fax - (210) 227-7755 Display Advertising - (210) 227-0044 Fax - (210) 227-7733 Classified - (210) 227-CLAS / Fax - (210) 227-7733 The San Antonio Current is published by Euclid Media Group Verified Audit Member San Antonio Distribution – The Current is available free of charge, limited to one copy per reader. Get listed 1. Visit sacurrent.com 2. Click “Calendar” and then “Submit an Event” 3. Follow the steps to submit your event details Please allow 48 hours for review and approval. Event submissions are not accepted by phone. Copyright - The entire contents of the San Antonio Current are copyright 2018 by Euclid Media Group LLC. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission of the publisher is prohibited. Publisher does not assume any liability for unsolicited manuscripts, materials, or other content. Any submission must include a stamped, self-addressed envelope. All editorial, advertising, and business correspondence should be mailed to the address listed above. Subscriptions - Additional copies or back issues may be purchased at the Current offices for $1. Six-month domestic subscriptions may be purchased for $75; one-year subscriptions for $125.

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07 News

GLITTER POLITICAL

David Balancas’ Sweet Surrender and the Passion for Public Art

Parsing the Props

Don’t like the fire union’s charter changes? Understandable. But don’t ignore the legitimate complaints they’re feeding on.

14 Calendar

Our top picks for the week

23 Arts

Meet the Texas-bred Dragon Lady

Tiamat Medusa takes body modification to the extreme

29 Screens

He Will Rock You

Actor Rami Malek anchors formulaic Bohemian Rhapsody with Oscar-worthy performance

Love & Other Drugs

Beautiful Boy is a harrowing story of addiction and the affection of a father and son

The Devil Made Me Write It

6(66) cinematic Satans who will have you clutching your rosary

It Put a Spell on You

How Disney brainwashed millions of millennials into believing Hocus Pocus is a Halloween classic

Julián P. Ledezma

09 Feature

Down to the Wire

O’Rourke and Jones remain the underdogs, but their close campaigns suggest Texas politics is changing BY S A N F O R D N O W L I N

35 Food

The Big Spoon

Weather woes are a thing for SA restaurants

Remember Them

San Anto goes all in for Dia de Muertos

Cocktails of the Week

Witchy brews for your Halloween enjoyment

Happy Hour Hound

Meadow’s grown-up offerings

41 Music

The Lucky Seven Shows You Can’t Miss

Chilly weather may be kicking in, but these live shows promise to keep you warm

Music Top Picks

48 Etc

Savage Love, Crossword Puzzle, Astrology, This Modern World

On The Cover: Underdog senate candidate Beto O’Rourke may not take down Ted Cruz, but even a near miss could mean big changes in Texas politics. O’Rourke’s scrappy campaign has rebuilt the state’s Democratic infrastructure and may aid down-ballot races. Illustration: Tim Gabor Art Direction: Carlos Aguilar

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GLITTER POLITICAL

David Balancas’ Sweet Surrender and the Passion for Public Art BY JADE ESTEBAN ESTRADA

V

isual artist David Blancas believes “the ultimate canvas is a public setting,” which is why creating public art – like the vibrant Windows to Our Heritage murals on the underpass pillars of U.S. 90 and Presa Street– has become one of his greatest passions. “Exhibits are fine, but they are ephemeral,” he says from the historic Progreso Drugstore Building, part of the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center campus on the city’s West Side. Beyond illuminating the here and now, he feels creating public art is an opportunity to leave a lasting legacy. “Civilizations come and go,” he says. “All that’s left is the art.” For Blancas, 45, “engaging the community through public art” is more than a satisfying artistic endeavor. Working on the underpass murals was also an educational experience. As he tells me about the area’s indigenous peoples and less-well-known aspects of San Antonio’s aviation history, as explored in the murals he painted for the city’s Tricentennial, it occurs to me that Blancas has been on my radar for several years. I first met him in 2010 at a World AIDS Day ceremony at Our Lady of the Lake University. In collaboration with the event’s organizers, he displayed a painting that paid tribute to a friend who passed away in the earlier days of the AIDS epidemic. Eight years later, the painting is stored in his studio in hopes that one day it may “serve a greater purpose as a piece of public art.” When in “trench mode,” Blancas “barely comes out of [his] studio.” When he does take a breather, Blancas turns to his family tradition of playing the classical guitar. His father and grandfather were both musicians. In fact, his current Facebook profile photo shows him playing a guitar outdoors, under a crisp, blue sky. Growing up, he remembers how instruments were all over the house. “I was just better at painting,” he says with only a hint of a smile. Blancas started painting at an early age. When I ask him which discipline seems to inspire him more – music or painting – he replies, “To me, one inspires the other.” Part of a series of murals for the World Heritage Mural Trail, Windows to Our Heritage is a series of vignettes that share stories of San

davidblancas.com

Antonio’s South Side. The collaboration is between local mosaicist Oscar Alvarado and research gatherer George Cisneros of Urban-15. “When you work with someone else,” Blancas explains, “there’s a surrender.” Surrendering to the collaboration? I ask. “Surrendering to the process,” he says after a few moments. “They do their part – and you can’t control that – and you do yours. Within that there’s a new piece. You feed off each other. You ebb and flow off the other artist’s aesthetic to reach that collaborative, unexpected result.” Blancas says collaboration isn’t for everyone. “Some artists want to control everything,” he says. His openness to collaboration may have been encouraged when he began working with the Guadalupe’s mural program. It gave him the opportunity to work with high-risk kids in the juvenile probation department over a decade ago. He left the center in 2011 because he says that, at the time, he “wasn’t happy with the direction” the Guadalupe was taking. He seems pleased about his return because the little cultural landmark that could has “new blood” and, under the leadership of Executive Director Cristina Ballí, “a new direction,” he says. “All roads lead back to home,” Blancas adds. “The Guadalupe is a safe space [for Latino artists] and it should be appreciated.” Born in Nueva Rosita, Coahuila, in northern Mexico, Blancas has always had “one foot on one side of the border [and] one side on the other.” Unsurprisingly, conversations about immigration hit close to home, especially those insta-flammable exchanges on social

media. He describes political conversations with friends as “a high-wire act.” He remembers in his twenties when he was “all private commissions.” With higher visibility now, he observes that the more political one becomes in the art world, the more it could potentially hurt the “financial support” for certain projects. “If you are an artist, use our platform now more than ever,” he says. “It behooves you, if you’re at a certain level, to keep those conversations going.” One of those conversations is about immigration, which inspired him to paint “Separation,” which depicts the divisive issue that will likely be remembered as the centerpiece of President Donald J. Trump’s administration. It’s the image of a kneeling mother holding her child. The arm of a gloved man looms over them. “The climate is fragile,” Blancas says. “It’s too easy to fight right now. It’s too easy to name-call. I want my work to reflect positivity. It’s too easy to draw attention to yourself in the negative… just to be controversial. It’s way too easy.” And he sees a lot of positivity in the stories and images that are being ignored in the digital age – stories of courage, faith and resistance. Blancas wants the satisfaction that, in his view, only the creation of public art can bring. He hopes to follow up his past successes like La Musica de San Anto, a commemorative mural dedicated to the musicians of San Antonio, and Spirit of a Leader, his ode to a hand-waving Martin Luther King, Jr. on the East Side, in an effort to reach intergenerational and intercultural communities. “Once you lay that last brush stroke, it’s not yours anymore,” he says. “It’s the community’s.”

Find more newsmore coverage Find news every day at sacurrent.com


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Julián P. Ledezma

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Down to the Wire

O’Rourke and Jones remain the underdogs, but their close campaigns suggest Texas politics is changing BY SANFORD NOWLIN

O

nce the “sleeping giant” of Texas’ Latino vote fully awakens, the state will be shocked straight out of its deep-red hue. Or so the wisdom goes. But Beto O’Rourke’s scrappy U.S. Senate campaign may defy that adage, just as it has so many other conventions, experts say. Whether the El Paso Democrat ekes out a surprise win or a narrow loss, he’ll have pulled off that November miracle not just with the support of Hispanic voters but the state’s long-ignored millennials, moderates and suburban voters. “Depending on the outcome of O’Rourke’s race — which is already kind of set in stone based on the enthusiasm and the turnout — you could see Texas

become more of a purple state,” said Paul Stekler, a professor at the University of Texas’ LBJ School of Public Affairs. “It was always going to come, but until now, it was a question of whether it would be 2020, 2030 or 2040.” To be sure, recent polls show Republican incumbent Ted Cruz ahead by single digits. But unless it’s an unexpected blowout, O’Rourke’s meteoric rise likely will have helped down-ballot races, singlehandedly rebuilt crumbling Democratic infrastructure and preserved him as a viable future candidate — perhaps even on the national stage. Still, observers said they’re not ready to concede a Cruz win. Especially when polls notoriously under-

count young voters, immigrants and other marginalized groups O’Rourke’s actively courted. Plus, given the almost evangelical enthusiasm of his voters, the last-minute upside is almost entirely his. “Do I put a thumb on the scale for Cruz in this race? Absolutely,” said Jennifer Duffy, an editor with Cook Political Report, one of the most-watched barometers for U.S. races. “But, at the end of the day, it’s still close. This isn’t going to be an early call.” A month ago, Duffy changed her rating on the race from “leans Republican” to “toss-up,” an alteration she still stands behind, especially with O’Rourke’s campaign flush with enough cash to keep his ads in constant TV rotation. 11 6

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House of Representatives

His to Lose

Conservative temperament aside, Democrats have long played against a stacked deck in Texas. A weak party structure, voter suppression and partisan gerrymandering would seem to form a near-impenetrable dam for any Blue Wave. When O’Rourke announced his candidacy last year to choruses of “Who?”, it sure looked like Cruz had it in the bag. Even if he was charisma-challenged, he had all the name recognition in the world thanks to his presidential run — and, after all, this is Texas. But like so many other races this midterm, this one emerged as a clear-cut referendum on the hyper-partisan, hyper-nasty Trump era. On one side stands an unabashedly progressive candidate with an aspirational, open-tent message, and on the other one of the most scathing partisans to ever fill a Senate seat. That zeitgeist provided O’Rourke with a ready audience as his campaign zigzagged across all 254 Texas counties and helped fuel a social media phenomenon. Who among us hasn’t tuned in to at least one O’Rourke town hall via Facebook or wasted time at work watching him air drum to the Who’s “Baba O’Reilly.” Anti-Trump sentiment also helped the campaign reel in record donations from across the country. Its last quarterly fundraising haul topped $38.1 million, most of it raised from small donors. And all of it, as O’Rourke likes to point out, without PAC contributions. “It’s the negative coattails of this president,” said St. Marty’s University Political Science Professor Arturo Vega, explaining O’Rourke’s unexpected rise. “This race shouldn’t even have been close. He’s running against an incumbent Republican senator in a red state who had a lot of cash on hand.”

Border Fight

Courtesy of Gina Ortiz Jones

Garnering less national exposure but running similarly close is the fight for 23rd Congressional District, which includes Southwest San Antonio and a formidable stretch of the U.S. border running nearly to El Paso. There, Republican incumbent Will Hurd, an exCIA agent, is squaring off against Democrat Gina Ortiz Jones, a former Air Force intelligence officer. Since winning the nomination, Jones has attacked Hurd most vigorously on healthcare, pointing out

his eight separate votes to undo the Affordable Care Act before he finally broke with his party and opposed its ill-fated repeal and replace plan. But Hurd, the first congressman to win re-election to the notoriously fickle district in eight years, has managed to distance himself from the president by blasting him over the border wall and family separation. Even though Hurd’s voting record swings considerably to the right of the purple district, he endeared himself by putting in the miles and holding regular Dairy Queen town halls. “Hurd has done a decent job of calculating where he can distance himself from Trump while still towing the Republican line,” said Trinity University political science professor David Crockett. Still, in other years, this could have been a phone-in for Hurd, especially against a newcomer like Jones. But she’s been an aggressive campaigner who’s been smart to focus on Hurd’s record. Not to mention, PACs have dumped millions into TV ads hoping for a win in what many considered the state’s most-flippable district. Ultimately, the question comes down to whether Hurd’s personal popularity will trump his party affiliation and voting record, according to observers.

Changing Times At the end of the day, the tightness of both races suggests a sizable share of Texans, whether they reside in the suburbs, border districts or near college campuses may be ready to defy decades of conservative dominance. Certainly, recent public opinion polls suggest Texas’ populace has grown far less conservative than the stereotype, especially as it draws more residents from blue states. A recent Quinnipiac survey, for example, showed that 55 percent of Texans support stricter gun laws, 53 percent oppose a border wall and 79 percent think Dreamers, those undocumented immigrants brought here as children, should be permitted to stay and seek citizenship. To be sure, if both O’Rourke and Jones — especially O’Rourke — are dealt bruising defeats, it will be a demoralizing setback for the state’s Democrats. But changing demographics and an energized electorate sure suggest the odds are against that scenario. “The trend in Texas is always going to be toward a more purple state,” Stekler of the LBJ school said. “It’s a question of how soon we get there.”

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news

Here’s the city attorney’s office’s take on the proposition: “Under the proposed measure, the Union could call for binding arbitration before participating in any good faith labor negotiations with the City which could have substantial negative impacts on the City’s budget.” The proponents’ answer has essentially been: Better that than allowing the city to waste more than $1 million in taxpayers’ money to fight a losing battle against the union, as it did over the last several years with a lawsuit to end the “evergreen” clause in the fire union’s contract.

CITY CURRENT

Parsing the Props Don’t like the fire union’s charter changes? Understandable. But don’t ignore the legitimate complaints they’re feeding on. BY GREG JEFFERSON

H

ere are the three proposed amendments to the city charter that have been the subject of so much hyperventilation over the last several months.

PROPOSITION A Shall the City Charter be amended to expand the types of ordinances that may be subject to referendum including appropriation of money, levying a tax, granting a franchise, fixing public utility rates, zoning and rezoning of property; increase the number of days within which a petition may be filed seeking a referendum on an ordinance passed by council from forty to one hundred eighty days after passage of the ordinance; and to provide that no more than twenty thousand signatures of registered voters are required for a referendum petition instead of ten percent of those electors qualified to vote at the last regular municipal election?

PROPOSITION B Shall the City Charter be amended to limit the term the City Manager may serve to no longer than eight years, limit the compensation of the City Manager to no more than ten times the annual salary furnished to the lowest paid fulltime city employee, and to require a supermajority vote to appoint the City Manager?

PROPOSITION C Shall the City Charter be amended to provide the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 624 with unilateral authority to require the City to participate in binding arbitration of all issues in dispute with the Association within forty-five days of the City’s receipt of the Association’s written arbitration request? This is as they appear on the November 6 ballot.

The Skinny The first one would have the most direct effect on how city government operates. When opponents fret about “mob rule,” as Tech Bloc did in advertising for its anti-proposition rally on October 11, this is what they’re talking about. The amendment would make it far easier to put far more types of city business to a public vote. Don’t want to pay that SAWS rate increase those knuckleheads on city council approved, or think the utility didn’t make a strong enough case for the hike? Hate that rezoning decision that allows a massage business where the “therapists” use CBD oil to move into your neighborhood? Those kinds of actions aren’t challengeable under the city charter today, but they would be if voters approve the amendments

on Election Day. And while you’d have to collect 70,000 signatures of real-life registered voters and have 40 days after passage of the ordinance to do it under current rules, you’d have four and a half months to gather more than two-thirds fewer valid signatures if Prop A passes. But let’s get real here, San Antonians. You don’t want that stinky pot-oil massage parlor down the block from your house, and nobody has to ask you twice to rail against it on your neighborhood’s Facebook page or Nextdoor. But are you going to put in the time and money to collect signatures for a referendum? Probably not. If Prop A passes, expect special interests across the political spectrum – from deep-pocketed developers to San Antonio Family Association and other hard-right culture warriors to labor unions and environmental organizations – to try to junk council decisions. Forget mob rule. Think rule by interest groups. If Prop B passes, the opposition’s argument goes, the mantra for hiring San Antonio’s next city manager won’t be “the best and the brightest” but “the adequate and the most affordable.” As of August, capping a new city manager’s compensation at 10 times the annual income of the lowest-paid city employee would translate to $290,000 per year, according to local economist Steve Nivin’s analysis. Compare that to the $325,000 starting salary of Austin’s city manager or the Dallas city manager’s 2017-2018 pay of $375,000. Both cities are economically more successful, but also smaller than San Antonio. Do you expect great things from your most powerful city official? Pray for a whiz kid willing to take relatively lower pay to make a name for him- or herself in the nation’s seventh-largest city – before moving to a city government that pays real money. Or a talented native San Antonian – maybe a deputy or assistant city manager under Sculley – who would accept the pay cap for the chance to improve his or her hometown. The limit of eight years on the job would mark a big shift in power between the city council and the city manager. Among the stuff you never hear about in public is the fact that council members are at the mercy of City Manager Sheryl Sculley and her staff for a lot of the deliverables they want for their districts – for the timing of street repairs, for example, or the opening of that new park. Most council members work to maintain friendly, agreeable relations with Sculley and her people in part because they don’t know how much longer she’ll be around – it could be years to come for all they know. That uncertainty is one of her strengths. The result is council members falling in line far more often than asserting themselves. An eight-year term limit would upend that state of affairs, which is exactly what the fire union is trying to do with Prop B. Prop C is the most nakedly self-interested amendment pushed by the San Antonio Professional Firefighters Association. It would block the city from taking a contract dispute with the fire union to court.

Coming Out in the Wash Underlying all of the campaign stuff – the TV ads and the Facebook videos and the mailers – put out by the business-backed Go Vote No campaign is this argument: These three charter amendments would create a lot of uncertainty about all kinds of municipal spending, including for streets and other basic services, and the city’s financial condition – and that’s bad for business. Opponents routinely describe the propositions as politically akin to a meteor strike that will kick up so much debris that it’ll block the sun and plunge us into a new ice age. An economic impact study done by Nivin and commissioned by the city estimated the potential damage of the three propositions at somewhere between $382 million to $4.2 billion over the next 20 years. Nivins’ report raises the specter of employers thinking twice before considering San Antonio as a place to invest in and create jobs. Wall Street also detests uncertainty, which is why a couple of credit-rating agencies have warned of cuts to the city’s AAA bond rating if voters approve the propositions, which would cost millions every year in higher interest rates. In other words, Wall Street likes the status quo.

The Sculley Problem Now, if you vote for council and mayoral candidates because of their good judgment and because they have their communities’ interests at heart, this proposition doesn’t make much sense. But our faith in institutions such as City Hall had been eroding for decades. Then along came Donald Trump, and, well, you know… Unique to San Antonio, however, are concerns about Sculley, who’s been on the job for 13 years. The fact is, a lot of San Antonians believe her compensation is too rich – she earns $450,000 and her most recent performance bonus was $75,000 – even though she manages a 12,000-employee enterprise with an annual budget of $2.8 billion. They’re also worried she has amassed too much power – see, for example, her decision in March to overrule the Historic Design and Review Commission to clear the way for an apartment project next to the Hays Street Bridge. The fire union is trying to harness those fears to keep any future city manager – and the city’s budget – on a short leash. Theirs is a raw, demagogic power play that would wind up damaging San Antonio’s future prospects, though maybe not to the tune of $4 billion, if voters OK the propositions. But this outcome too would be harmful to San Antonians: If the Go Vote No campaign prevails and, as a result, elected officials and business leaders might feel justified in continuing to ignore legitimate complaints about Sculley and the lack of transparency at City Hall. sacurrent.com | October 31-November 6, 2018 | CURRENT

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Centro Cultural Aztlán

THU | 11/1 - SAT | 11/3 SPECIAL EVENT

DÍA DE LOS MUERTOS CELEBRATIONS

As you might have noticed, the Alamo City can hardly wait for the arrival of All Saints’ Day (November 1) and All Souls’ Day (November 2) to pull out all the stops for Día de los Muertos, the pre-Columbian tradition that mocks death by celebrating the dearly departed with festive altars (or ofrendas) adorned with candles, incense, marigolds, photographs, keepsakes, sugar skulls, pán de muerto, cherished snacks and plenty more in between. In fact, many of the hallmarks of Day of the Dead, as it’s called in certain parts, are imbedded in the social fabric of San Antonio year-round, including the ever-present skeletons and skulls, not to mention makeup and decor directly inspired by Mexican illustrator and satirist José Guadalupe Posada’s characters — especially his early 20th-century icon La Calavera Catrina, a behatted spirit that’s been dubbed both the “dapper skeleton” and the “elegant skull.” Although creating an ofrenda to pay tribute to a lost loved one at home is arguably the most rewarding way to observe Día de los Muertos, there’s an abundance of opportunities to celebrate the occasion at community-oriented events throughout the city. Both stalwarts that sprung from HemisFair ’68, the Mexican Cultural Institute (MCI) and the UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures (ITC) team up for a collaborative offering that begins at ITC with the presentation of an altar created by UTSA Honors College students, snakes through Hemisfair in a lively procession led by URBAN-15’s elaborately costumed drum-and-dance troupe Carnaval de los Muertos, and culminates at MCI with hot chocolate, pán de muerto, tamales and the unveiling of an ofrenda honoring Tom Frost, the late local banking legend the event organizers remind was a “young immigrant as well as a beloved San Antonian who always showed respect and admiration for Mexican culture” (free, 6-9pm Fri, 14  CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com

begins at 801 E. César Chavez Blvd., ends at 600 Hemisfair Plaza Way, texancultures.com). Formed in 1977 with a mission to “build upon the tradition of Chicano and indigenous culture,” Centro Cultural Aztlán is a long-standing champion of Día de los Muertos in San Antonio. The 41st edition of the cultural arts organization’s pioneering group exhibition “Altares y Ofrendas” is anchored by a diverse showcase of ofrendas but also promises pán de muerto, ponche de frutas, a performance by the skeleton-faced Carnaval de San Anto and an “Avenida de los Muertos” brimming with artisanal creations ($3 suggested donation, 6-9pm Fri, Centro Cultural Aztlán, 1800 Fredericksburg Road, centroaztlan.org). Active since 1980, the community-based Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center upholds its mission to cultivate, promote and preserve “traditional and contemporary Latino arts and culture through multidisciplinary programming” including long-running local faves such as the Tejano Conjunto Festival and CineFestival, as well as museum-caliber exhibitions and year-round programming. The West Side nonprofit’s Día de los Muertos Celebration includes an exhibition of altars created by artists, families and organizations, a launch reception for Barbara Renaud-Gonzalez’s new book Dear San Antonio, I’m Gone But Not Lost: Letters to the World from Your Voting Rights Hero Willie Velasquez, art-making workshops, pán de muerto y chocolate, face-painting and performances by the Guadalupe Mariachi Academy and Guadalupe Dance Academy (free, 6-10pm Fri, Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, 723 S. Brazos St., guadalupeculturalarts.org). A “politically progressive, outspoken and unwavering force for justice in San Antonio” since 1987, the Esperanza Peace and Justice Center also boasts a long and fruitful history in the Alamo City, crusading for everything from historical preservation to transgender rights. Inviting folks to celebrate “dearly departed familia, friends and ancestors,” the nonprofit’s take on Día de los Muertos combines altar displays with a costumed procession, readings of literary ofrendas and calavera poems, local vendors including the MujerArtes clay cooperative, and live music by soul siren Alyson Alonzo, singer-songwriter/guitarist Azul Barrientos and Latin orchestra Volcán — not to mention pán de muerto, tamales and hot chocolate (free but donations appreciated, 3-11:30pm Thu, Rinconcito de Esperanza, 816 S. Colorado St., esperanzacenter.org). A much younger tradition, Día de los Muertos at Pearl returns for a second-annual outing featuring

Patricia Vonne

a real-life Calavera Catrina in the form of actress and performer Estela Williams, art-making activities, a procession and live mariachi, conjunto and folkloric music, plus altars created by school groups, local artists (including Cruz Oritz, Cristina Sosa Noriega and Al Rendon) and Mexico City-based Karima Muyaes, who’ll be selling prints, paper skulls and paintings, and unveiling an altar honoring the 43 students who vanished in the Mexican city of Iguala in 2014 (free, 4-9pm Thu, 5-9pm Fri, Pearl Park, 303 Pearl Pkwy., atpearl.com). Promising “one of San Antonio’s most comprehensive Día de los Muertos celebrations,” creative youth-development nonprofit SAY Sí’s Muertitos Fest adds “educational context” to the holiday via a student art showcase, ofrendas, folk-art workshops, artisan vendors and cultural performances. Adopting a theme of “Sin Fronteras (Without Borders)” as a means to highlight “the vibrant indigenous cultures of Mexico and the origins of this significant celebration,” this year’s fest kicks off with a First Friday reception complete with a procession, food booths and a kid-friendly costume contest, and wraps up Saturday with a Family Day featuring face-painting, crafty workshops, music and performances (free, 6-10:30pm Fri, noon 4pm Sat, SAY Sí, 1518 S. Alamo St., saysi.org). Numerous parks and landmarks light up with special programs and varied fanfare — including a lunchtime lecture by Alamo staffer Misty Hurley on “the history of the Day of the Dead, the blending of cultures that influenced the holiday and its place in modern pop culture” ($15, includes lunch, noon-1pm Thu, The Alamo, Alamo Hall, 300 Alamo Plaza, thealamo.org); a “Celebrando la Misiones de las Familias Descendientes” event with 10 altars created by families of mission descendants, a stage-sized community altar where guests can make contributions, a drum-and-dance procession, a historical presentation with narration by Emma Ortega, performances by cumbia/roots rockers Los De Esta Noche and the Teresa Champion Dance Academy, and an outdoor screening of the 2014 animated adventure The Book


calendar

Curious Twins Paranormal & Ghost Tours

Matt Buikema

of Life (free, 4-10pm Fri, Mission Marquee Plaza, 3100 Roosevelt Ave., missionmarquee. com); a concert in the heart of the city featuring performances by bilingual fusion rocker Patricia Vonne, Mariachi Corazón de San Antonio and the Bailando Sin Fronteras Dance Company, free sugar-skull face-painting, and an outdoor screening of Pixar’s 2017 Oscar winner Coco (free, 6-10:15pm Thu, Main Plaza, 115 N. Main Ave., mainplaza.org); and kid-friendly sugar-skull workshops, a community altar, a Henry Ford Academy art show inspired by a favorite “deceased rock star,” a dance performance by local flamenco legend Teresa Champion and a screening of Coco (free, 5-10pm, Market Square, 514 W. Commerce St., sanantonio.gov). Presented by the Lone Star Art District, the Paseo Día de los Muertos unites a handful of the neighborhood’s artist-run spaces for concurrent exhibitions, displays of altars created by more than 20 artists and organizations — Ana Hernandez, Rudy Choperena, Jesse Amado, Felix and Ana Padron and Karlos Anzoategui, aka Karlos with a “K” among them — and performances by Antonia Padilla, Crystal Flores and Carnaval de los Muertos (free, 5-10pm Fri, Lone Star Art District, 107 Lone Star Blvd., facebook.com/lonestarartdistrict). Rounding out the offerings on an explosive note, Planet K’s 11th annual Día de los Muertos Fireworks Celebration promises to be the beloved gift emporium’s “biggest yet” with a memorial balloon release, face-painting, food trucks, art exhibits and a vintage car parade leading up to the big finale set against the picturesque backdrop of Woodlawn Lake (free, 4-8:30pm Fri, Woodlawn Lake Park, 1103 Cincinnati Ave., planetktexasfireworks.com). — Bryan Rindfuss

WED | 10/31 SPECIAL EVEN T

‘ECHOES FROM THE GRAVEYARD’ CEMETERY FLASHLIGHT TOUR L

Brought to you by the folks at Curious Twins Paranormal & Ghost Tours, who are obviously no strangers to shaping a marketable spectacle out of the macabre at large and (alleged) supernatural goings-on in San Antonio, this special tour takes things to new and unsettling levels. On Halloween night, locals with a taste for genuine spooky shit can participate in a graveyard tour of San Antonio National Cemetery by flashlight. If that doesn’t sound terrifying, and a tad bit irreverent in an almost problematic way, we don’t know what does. The historical cemetery, with thousands interred, was built back in 1867 — and, as we all know, the longer a thing like that has been around, the greater the potential for haunting. The tour will feature odd and uncanny tidbits

Courtesy of Kevin Hart

about the location’s history, fun/spooky San Antonio facts, a crash course in ghost hunting, and (no doubt) plenty of anxious looking around. If you’re intrepid/morbid enough to be game for this, you can reserve your spots via the phone number listed below or by searching for the event on Facebook. $15, 6:30-7:45pm, San Antonio National Cemetery, 517 Paso Hondo, (210) 802-9187, facebook.com/ curioustwins. — James Courtney

THU | 11/1 COMEDY

KEVIN HART j

Coming off a promotional tour for his newest movie Night School, which pairs him and Tiffany Haddish together for the first time on the big screen, comedian Kevin Hart is back on the road to continue The Irresponsible Tour across the globe. The tour actually started in September 2017 and runs through the end of the year with just enough time to hit a few more U.S. cities (San Antonio is 11th to the last on his busy schedule). The Irresponsible Tour will then jump the pond for the final international homestretch. Along with his stand-up career, which started in 2009, Hart has found major success as an actor, pulling in solid earnings in the last few years with comedies like Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, Ride Along, Central Intelligence, Get Hard and The Secret Life of Pets. Two of those movies also starred Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who Hart joked with the Current during an interview last month when he told us the former WWE champ isn’t his favorite co-star. “You gotta put Tiffany at the top. I would put Will Ferrell after that. Then [Ice] Cube. The Rock is last. That’s how I would rank it.” $45-$135, 7pm, AT&T Center, One AT&T Center Pkwy., (210) 444-5000, attcenter.com. – Kiko Martinez


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DRAG

OUT IN THE PARK q

SAT | 11/3

Spurs Sports & Entertainment

SPORTS

SPURS VS. PELICANS L

After blowing out the Houston Rockets on opening night, the New Orleans Pelicans arrive in San Antonio as one of the surprise teams in the new NBA season. Five-time All-Star Anthony Davis is the fulcrum for the Pelicans’ early success and should prove a handful for San Antonio’s seven-foot tandem of Jakob Poeltl and Pau Gasol. Sparked by shooting guard DeMar DeRozan’s multifaceted game, the Spurs offense has been firing on all cylinders in recent victories. LaMarcus Aldridge’s presence in the low post and on the boards has been key for San Antonio in the early going, particularly away from home. Coach Pop continues to weather the storm at the point guard position with Bryn Forbes and Patty Mills in spot duty, which has proven detrimental to the Spurs defense. In what has suddenly become a stacked Southwest division, expect a tight contest against Davis and the young Pels. $20-$875, 7:30pm, AT&T Center, One AT&T Center Pkwy., (210) 444-5000, attcenter.com. — M. Solis

An annual affair for the LGBT community, Rey Lopez Entertainment’s Out in the Park at Six Flags Fiesta Texas brings together local drag talent and fan favorites from RuPaul’s Drag Race alongside roller coasters and thrill rides. Representing the Alamo City this year will be the RLE Showgirls with a special tribute to late tejano icon Selena. The event is also a reunion of sorts for several contestants from season 10 of RPDR, including Blair St Clair, the Vixen, Yuhua Hamasaki, Kalorie Karbdashian-Williams, Vanessa “Vanjie” Mateo, Dusty Ray Bottoms, and Monét X Change (pictured). From Mateo’s early send-off, where she repeated the now-infamous phrase “Miss Vangie,” to Dusty Ray Bottom’s confession about what really happens in conversion therapy, the reality competition show remains as relevant and meme-worthy today as it was when it premiered a decade ago. $51.99-$125, 7-11:55pm, Six Flags Fiesta Texas, 17000 I-10 W., (210) 697-5050, sixflags.com. — Marco Aquino

Courtesy of Anjelah Johnson

THU | 11/1 - SUN | 11/4

Jovanni Jimenez-Pedraza MUSIC + DANCE

FLYING BACH q

COMEDY

ANJELA JOHNSON L

Stand-up comedian Anjela Johnson is living out her “Gold Plated Dreams.” It’s the name of a hip-hop album she released as her MadTV character Bon Qui Qui in 2015, which should technically have a hyphen between “gold” and “plated,” but don’t tell Bon Qui Qui that because then she might cut you. In fact, her single “I’m a Cut You” explains why she’ll cut you if you’re rude (“Boy, I really wish you would / Tryna’ watch what happens”). While she dabbles a bit in rap, Johnson, who was once a professional cheerleader in the NFL, is at her best when making people laugh center stage. She’ll be in town this weekend and will then return the following week (November 8-11) for a second round of San Anto. Last year, Johnson filmed her fourth comedy special, Mahalo & Goodnight, in Honolulu. It premiered on the Epix channel and is currently streaming on Hulu. In the special, Johnson explains why being bowlegged is bad when you try to wear heels and shares advice with married couples about why they should never impulse-buy a house. $40-$60, 7pm Thu, 7:30pm & 10pm Fri-Sat, 7pm Sun, Laugh Out Loud Comedy Club, 618 NW Loop 410, (210) 541-8805, lolsanantonio.com. – KM 16

CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com

B. Kay Richter

Four-time world champion dancing troupe Flying Steps has put a new twist on something baroque in their latest touring performance. In Flying Bach, they breakdance to the music of “The Well Tempered Clavier,” and let me tell you, regardless of your opinion on our man JSB, this will certainly be a show to remember! $29.50-$85, 8pm, Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Circle, (210) 223-8624, tobincenter.org.. — KMN

SPECIAL EVEN T

DIWALI L

Celebrate the annual Hindu Festival of Lights with a fete featuring authentic Indian cuisine, culture and color. The fest includes a river parade, a showcase of Indian dance and the traditional Diya Ceremony, in which candles are lit and floated in water, all capped off with a brilliant fireworks display. If you want to kick it off and really party, you can jump into some Bollywood Zumba or a Bhangra dance-along! Free, 5pm-midnight, Hemisfair (434 S. Alamo St.) & Arneson River Theater (418 Villita St.), diwalisa.com. — Kelly Merka Nelson

Carlo Cruz


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Courtesy of César González SPORTS

‘THE NEW BEGINNING’ L

Since opening wrestling-themed watering hole El Luchador in July 2017 on the city’s South Side, its owners have wanted to host wrestling events in their parking lot — just like their predecessor did when the establishment was known as Vaqueros. “They would have wrestling shows outside many years ago,” said El Luchador co-owner Jesse Campos. El Luchador will get its first taste of the turnbuckle when they team up with Santa Chinga Promotions and Hood All Starz Entertainment 210 for their first-ever wrestling show, which will feature a handful of wrestlers from the San Antonio area. As exciting as it might be to see some new blood in the ring, the featured guest for the evening is professional wrestler and actor César González, who played wrestling heel Ramses in the 2006 comedy Nacho Libre. González, known among the pros as the Silver King, is the son of wrestling legend Dr. Wagner. Although Jack Black won’t be in attendance, González (as Ramses) will go head-to-head with a Nacho Libre ringer in a fight for all of Southtown. Also on the card for the official Hardcore Main Event: Chino Reyes vs. Kaientai. $5-$10, 6:30pm, El Luchador Bar, 622 Roosevelt Ave., (210) 272-0016, facebook.com/luchadorbarsa. – KM

sacurrent.com | October 31-November 6, 2018 | CURRENT

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I MEND FENCES. When you work the land, you depend on healthy soil and fresh water. Farmers and ranchers also know to rely on one another, no matter their differences. Kim Olson here, running to bring common sense, ethics, and hard work to the Department of Agriculture. Vote Nov. 6 and together we can secure a strong Texas future for all Texans!

VOTE

Kim Olson for Texas Commissioner of Agriculture POL. ADV. PAID FOR BY KIM OLSON CAMPAIGN

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CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com

For online purchases only. Promo Code expires August 5th. Not valid with any other offer or discount. One coupon per person. General admission ticket only.


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calendar

Josie Del Castillo

THU | 11/1 - FRI | 11/2 ART

FIRST THURSDAY & FRIDAY HIGHLIGHTS

If the weather continues cooperating (it was close to perfect at the time of this writing) then November’s contribution to the First Friday circus might be one of the most pleasant of 2018. And while it might not pack the punch of festival-fueled March or September, this month is an ideal time to catch up on what you might’ve already missed this fall — such as Blue Star Contemporary’s sprawling group exhibition “Monarchs: Brown and Native Contemporary Artists in the Path of the Butterfly” and solo shows highlighting the work of Houston-based Adriana Corral, French video artist Sylvie Blocher and San Antonio’s own Jesse Amado (free, 10am-8pm Thu, 10am-9pm Fri, Blue Star Contemporary, 116 Blue Star, bluestarcontemporary.org). Over at UTSA’s offsite Terminal 136, Michigan native Eden Collins’ MFA thesis exhibition “Sometimes I Play with Myself ” delivers what one might imagine from its title: a multimedia installation that “sets the table for a universal conversation on sexuality and its maturation” 20

CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com

and transforms the gallery into “a hedonist’s playground” (free, 6-9pm Thu-Fri, Terminal 136, 136 Blue Star, art. utsa.edu). FL!GHT Gallery continues to break in its prime new digs with “Every Little Piece,” a showcase of nature and wildlife drawings by illustrator and designer Hilary Rochow. Arrive early to partake in “autumnal treats” (free, 6-10pm Thu-Fri, FL!GHT Gallery, 112 Blue Star, facebook.com/flightsa). And just off the Blue Star campus in the heart of Southtown, fan favorite Presa House Gallery welcomes Brownsville-based painters Jesse Burciaga, Josie Del Castillo and Alejandro Macias for “Different Skin,” an exhibition that explores “identity, culture, body image and their experiences living in the Rio Grande Valley” and is presented in tribute to their shared mentor Carlos G. Gomez, a late UT-Brownsville professor from Mexico City who spent three decades teaching art in the Valley. At the First Friday reception: beats by DJ Electric Messiah and live music by Austin-based “contemporary synth-cumbia” quartet Como Las Movies (free, 6pm-midnight Fri, Presa House Gallery, 725 S. Presa St., presahouse.com). — BR


calendar

Diana Kersey

SAT | 11/3 - SUN | 11/4 ART

UPTOWN ART STROLL

When folks talk about artsy communities in San Antonio, they always mention King William and South Flores/Lone Star, maybe Five Points or even La Villita, but they seldom remember Olmos Park Terrace. Truth be told, however, a diverse host of active artists/artisans (and their studios) are spread throughout the neighborhood. And this weekend’s Uptown Art Stroll presents the ideal opportunity to see for yourself — boasting 66 artists at more than 20 locations. While the website listed below offers a detailed map and other essentials, the area we are talking about is defined as “centrally located near the Quarry Market, just south of Basse Road between McCullough and San Pedro, bounded on the south by Dora.” If that sounds like quite the stroll indeed, don’t worry, there will be free pedi-cabs on hand to help you get smoothly and painlessly between locales (all of which will be marked with yellow and purple tie-dyed flags and signs). Just a few of the artists whose work we are excited to see include potter Diana Kersey, writer/visual artist Anel Flores and mixed-media artist Marcia Loew — but, honestly, part of the fun is the thrill of discovery. Free, 10am-5pm Sat, Noon-5pm Sun, Olmos Park Terrace, uptownartstroll.org. — JC

TUE | 11/6 TH EATER

SCHOOL OF ROCK: THE MUSICAL Mom and Dad still won’t let your band practice in the garage? Well, try telling them that this musical is an educational tale about geology, and hope that the show’s real lesson about the importance of making room in your life for fun and performance sinks in. For better or worse, you’ll all at least get to enjoy this rockin’ stage adaptation of a hit comedy flick. $40$150, 7:30pm (times vary through Nov. 11), The Majestic Theatre, 224 E. Houston St., (210) 226-3333, majesticempire.com. — KMN

Broadway in San Antonio

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7pm - Midnight | Hemisfair

Free Event

Visual Arts | Performance Dance | Music | Food & Drink

San Antonio, Texas | LuminariaSA.org

November 9th - 11th Full Event Listing at LuminariaSA.org

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24  CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com


arts

Photos courtesy of Tiamat Medusa

Meet the Texas-bred Dragon Lady Tiamat Medusa takes body modification to the extreme BY SHANNON SWEET

O

n a late-night YouTube binge, I unexpectedly met Tiamat Medusa, a trans woman from Bruni, Texas, who’s shed her human skin to become a dragon. But it wasn’t the tattooed scales that cover her face and body or the reptilian horns implanted in her head that inspired me to look deeper — it was her words on identity, the evils humanity is capable of and her optimistic outlook that resonated. A few months ago, Tiamat spread her wings to journey from her native Texas to Los Angeles. Although she’s facing significant hardships — such as homelessness, mental illness and being HIV-positive — there’s still hope in

her words that can touch anyone who’s ever felt alienated, alone or bullied. Featured in Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! Shatter Your Senses!, Tosh.0 and numerous blogs, Tiamat is a known presence in the body-modification community for her reptilian transformation, but her story reveals a ravaged heart that’s weathered the storm. To this day, Tiamat is subject to cruelty for her striking, altered state. But there’s a metaphorical aspect to the traumatic childhood event that led to her origin story. “I was abandoned by my mom and my stepdad in the woods in the middle of Texas, the land of the western diamondback rattlesnake,” Tiamat

told the Current. “When I was left out there, it was nighttime and my parents just drove off. All I could see into the night was the fading red lights of the car and then suddenly it was all pitch darkness. That’s the moment when my human parents ceased to be my parents and I adopted the rattlesnakes as my own parents … By throwing me out, [my parents] rejected me … I was not worth being loved and I was repulsive to them. The way they treated me made me feel the way humans mistreat rattlesnakes.” This began Tiamat’s transformation out of the human body she was born with to become another misunderstood creature. “[People are] scared of rattlesnakes and kill them for no reason at all … and they have done nothing to anyone. That’s my story: I’m the story of the rattlesnake. That’s why I’m becoming that rattlesnake myself and my full-body tattoo is a tribute to my reptilian rattlesnakes, the western diamondback rattlesnakes in particular.” But Tiamat is now in the process of evolving into something more fantastical — a dragon. “My transformation has a multitude of meanings; it’s a complex process with various meanings, some of them relating to my son. I am morphing from just being a rattlesnake to becoming a dragon, which is what I evolved into. Like a Pokémon evolves … my son and I, when he was just a child, used to watch Pokémon every day … it’s still one of my favorite cartoons.” But another tragedy sparked Tiamat’s next phase of evolution. She said, “My son has been estranged from my life going on seven years now. When my son stopped seeing me, when he rejected me, it was at that point that I became a dragon.” Despite that darkness, there’s a silver lining in the form of another child’s adoration. “It’s not only about my son, the reason I am a dragon right now is also a two-fold meaning. I have a friend in Germany who has a three-year-old son. Once, when she was looking through her friends list on her laptop, her son asked, ‘Who is that? I want to see her.’ And it was my picture. She took her son to my profile to show him my pictures, and he said, ‘She’s beautiful. She’s a dragon and I love dragons.’ He then grabbed the laptop away from his mom and kissed me on the computer screen. He used to go to bed at night and say, ‘Mommy, I am not afraid to be in the dark by myself because my dragon is protecting me.’” Bullying is also a theme in Tiamat’s South Texas upbringing. But rather than eroding her will, it’s made her stronger. “I first experienced bullying when I went into the fourth grade and it continued all the way until my sophomore year … You don’t have to give up because you’re bullied. Reach out. When I was a kid, there was no one for me to reach out to. I had no support system. I was the only gay person in town … I just decided to tell everyone at school because I didn’t care that I was gay and I was not going to hide from anyone so I would never have to be in the closet. To me, closets are for clothes and shoes.” 26 6

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arts

6 25 On a deeper level, Tiamat described moments of feeling overpowered with negativity. “I have been suicidal since I was a teenager … and I’ve had five failed suicide attempts … I finally realized I have a purpose in life and I’m here to stay until the universe decides my purpose has been completed. That is being what I am right now and who I am, speaking out and sharing my story, hoping to give others out there inspiration … There is someone to talk to and, if nothing else, talk to me. I’m always open to people [who want] to talk to me about how to handle their bullying situations.” Unfortunately bullying extends beyond the schoolyard, but Tiamat has words for those who judge her based on the surface. “What I’m doing to myself is to myself, it affects my body and my life … It’s not affecting anyone else … Those people who get on the Internet and say all kinds of ugly stuff are the sad part of the population who are running around with a closed mind and being judgmental. Sadly, many of them are clutching the bible and their rosary. Because of these people, I choose to not be called human anymore.” Tiamat has hit some road bumps in the process of becoming a California resident but isn’t looking back. “I am homeless but I am not homesick,” she told us. “I had an official, set-in-stone plan five months in advance before I even got here … to become roommates with someone who I was friends with for four and a half years, but … that so-called roommate vanished. So suddenly I’m homeless on the streets of Los Angeles.” As with many victims of trauma, a fresh start in a new place can be the best medicine. In Tiamat’s case, that fresh start includes access to medical marijuana. “The primary reason I left Texas to come to Los 26

CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com

Angeles was for medical marijuana,” she said. “I have medical conditions that require me to smoke marijuana, otherwise I cannot eat because I have no appetite. I start dry-heaving. I am also suffering and being treated for mental illness, as I have depression, anxiety and psychosis. A lot of my mental health issues stem from the events in my early stages of life throughout my adult life.” Yet there’s more to why Tiamat traded Texas for the flashing lights of Hollywood. “Another reason I moved to California is for opportunities, and I have about a dozen gigs already lined up from different agencies. I’m going to be setting my first world record for Guinness World Records.” The record she hopes to set is top secret, but may be revealed in the year ahead. Also on her horizon is a scheduled pitch to Comedy Central for a show called Comedy Copter, creating art after a three year break, and her directorial debut of a body-modification documentary and sequel to Modified. Speaking with excitement about Modified 2, she said, “It’s going to be an awakening. The body-modification community is huge and people don’t even know there is such a thing. It’s time for us to wake the sleeping giant and show the world that modified people are pretty much just like everyone else. Some of them, like myself, take things into the extreme, a higher level, but it doesn’t make us the evil monsters that a lot of people portray us to be.” Tiamat gets emotional explaining one of her most-anticipated surgeries. “My big plan for next year is to get my vagina,” she said. “I’ve been on hormones for six years now and last year, I got a prostatectomy because I don’t use my junk. It’s like tits on a boar hog —totally worthless — so I am a eunuch and I love it. I love the feeling of not having testicles because those dangling parts really bothered me a

lot and did a number on my psyche. It made me feel a lot more feminine not having those and now Mr. Bone Jangles has got to go and is set to be on the chopping block next year.” With her three beloved service dogs, or “reasons for living,” by her side, Tiamat is owning the streets of Skid Row with her punk-rock attitude. And, thankfully, a recent negative experience with a security officer didn’t get under her scaly skin. “The head of security at the other shelter I was at just didn’t like my look. He and another security guard there were very rude to me just because of my appearance … I also got threatened by another guy when I was waiting for the elevator, where he told me I needed to be killed.” Despite these interactions, Tiamat is still a proud, newly minted California girl. She said “Honestly … the number of people who have gone out of their way to be ugly and verbally attack me has been on the minimum side compared to other places. I have been to many states, and California is the first state that I have received such a tremendous, overwhelmingly positive reaction and acceptance from the general public.” Expanding on her reptilian nature while embracing her humanity, Tiamat described how her childhood epiphany affects her in social settings: “Years ago, I started stepping away from a lot of human contact because I’m becoming more of my reptilian self. You don’t see reptiles running around all over the streets, they come out at certain times … reptiles are shy creatures … so I’m just conforming to my true nature as a reptilian. But I’m a reptoid as I’m half human and half reptile, so I can be out in the street when I feel like embracing my humanity a little bit and say ‘hi’ to people. And people take pictures of me everywhere I go. It’s been a really interesting experience for me being homeless in Los Angeles to the point of where I am going to be making a video sharing my ex- 29 6


John Marin, American (Rutherford, New Jersey, 1870 – 1953, Cape Split, Maine), On Mount Desert, Maine, 1920, watercolor over graphite on textured watercolor paper, 14 x 16 ž in., Arkansas Arts Center Foundation Collection: Gift of Norma B. Marin. 2013.018.142

Through January 20, 2019 200 West Jones Avenue | samuseum.org sacurrent.com | October 31-November 6, 2018 | CURRENT

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Puro Pop McNay Free Family Day SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 1–4 PM | THROUGHOUT MUSEUM & GROUNDS printing ■ Stamp making ■ Custom button-making ■ Block

tours of Pop América 1965–1975 ■ DJs Axe6 and Donnie Dee ■ And much more! ■ Free

FIRST COME, FIRST FUN! For more information, call 210.805.1768, email education@mcnayart.org, or visit mcnayart.org/families.

6000 North New Braunfels San Antonio, Texas 78209-0069 Marisol Escobar (known as Marisol), Mi Mama Y Yo (My Mother and I), 1968. Painted bronze and aluminum pole, overall: 73 x 56 x 56 inches. Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York; Bequest of Marisol, 2016 (2018:15a-d). © 2018 Estate of Marisol / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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28 MSF-FFH-Print-SanAntonio-SACurrentHalfPage.indd CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | 1sacurrent.com

10/11/18 5:14 PM


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6 26 perience here and talking about what it’s like living on Skid Row.” Throughout her early struggles in LA, the love from everyone who knows her heart and her story has illuminated even the darkest days she’s faced. “When people on Facebook and Instagram found out I was homeless, a lot of people stepped up to the plate and asked me where they can send me money, so people would send me what they could through Instagram or Western Union. Because of this, they kept me off the street and I wouldn’t have been able to make it without people from here, Texas, around the United States and even some people outside of the country donated to my cause. The number of people who helped out was so overwhelming. I became emotional from the outpour of support from everyone. Thank you to everyone for the love and support because during this last month it’s been really hard.” Even though money is useful, the emotional support is worth more than its weight in gold. “I was sent financial aid to pay for hotel rooms and food because I used up all my resources. That was really important to me but equally important to me is the love and support that

people show in the form of prayers, a lot of people lit a white candle, some were reaching out to me and letting me know they were there and were supportive. I’ve had people aid me and come to my assistance in many different ways, one of the ways that meant so much to me was that they were rooting for me, that they love me, and that they were there for me if I needed them. That meant a lot to me, as much as the financial help.” Aside from support from friends on social media, the community — including the transgender community — has given back to get Tiamat back on her feet, highlighting why public programs are vital. “This crisis that I found myself in was an all-across-the-board crisis — I was having a financial and emotional crisis. When I left Houston, I inadvertently left my extra medication, so I went for three and a half weeks without my antidepressants, and I was having really bad episodes when I was on the street. Finally, with the help of my new case manager in LA from the Trans Latina Coalition, I was able to get an appointment with a psychiatrist who helps homeless people get [their] medical needs taken care of.” A brief encounter Tiamat had on the street is a perfect end to this story. “I’m having fun with my transformation and there are a lot of people who hate it, hate me for just how I look. Last night, when I was walking down the street in Skid Row, one guy looked at me and asked when did I want to become the devil. I said, ‘The devil? What do you mean?’ He then asked if I was reptilian, and I said yes. He said that reptiles are the devil. And I said. ‘Humans are the devil. You got it all wrong.’”

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Actor Rami Malek anchors formulaic Bohemian Rhapsody with Oscar-worthy performance BY KIKO MARTINEZ

F

rom a cinematic standpoint, there is something deeply fulfilling about witnessing the creation of a song — from the seedling of an idea inside a musician’s head to the concept taking shape to form the perfect harmony or poetry or beat. Whether it’s in a makeshift studio in Memphis spitting out gangsta rap like in 2005’s Hustle & Flow or in the hands of professional producers recording “Good Vibrations” like in 2014’s Love & Mercy, the birth of a song for the big screen can be thrilling if done correctly. In Bohemian Rhapsody, the musical biopic of Queen vocalist Freddie Mercury, the opportunity to craft these types of memorable scenes exists — especially with the many hits the British rock band had in the ’70s and ’80s — but Oscar-nominated screenwriter Anthony McCarten (The Theory of Everything) only manages to partially recreate the magic audiences can just imagine took place between the walls of a Queen recording session. Watching drummer Roger Taylor (Ben Hardy) do 30 takes of “Galileo!” doesn’t cut it. Still, with Bohemian Rhapsody immersed in as much of Queen’s music as it could possibly fit into a 134-minute-long feature film, it’s hard to argue that Queen’s catalogue wasn’t treated

Amazon Studios

Love & Other Drugs

Beautiful Boy is a harrowing story of addiction and the affection of a father and son

T

he opening lyrics of John Lennon’s moving single “Beautiful Boy” off his 1980 album Double Fantasy are a bit too precise when comparing them to its namesake film: “Close your eyes, have no fear / The monster’s gone, he’s on the run and your daddy’s here.”

screens

He Will Rock You

Twentieth Century Fox

with the utmost respect. And with actor Rami Malek (TV’s Mr. Robot) transforming into a larger-than-life legend like Freddie and delivering the best performance of his young career — and an Oscar-worthy one at that — he keeps the film from going completely out of tune. Bohemian Rhapsody is an irrefutable crowd-pleaser — a sort of high-energy concert movie posing as a dramatic biopic. (It probably won’t be uncommon if moviegoers start to jam out to the most dynamic scenes.) Even when he’s not center stage, Malek is a rock star. Much like Joaquin Phoenix’s Johnny Cash in the 2005 biopic Walk the Line, he’s not a dead-ringer for Freddie, but has no problem capturing his I-don’t-give-a-fuck attitude, flamboyant nature and unbridled talent. Where the film falters, however, is in the formu-

laic way McCarten assembles the finer points of Freddie’s life and career and how unsure he seems to be in dealing with the most sensitive issues the rocker goes through, including his coming to terms with his homosexuality, which McCarten skims through without much detail. If anything is frustrating about Bohemian Rhapsody, it’s the kidglove treatment it gets from the script. But Malek. Oh, Rami Malek. It’s virtually impossible not to recommend Bohemian Rhapsody based on his performance alone. A Star is Born actors Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga might’ve been the on-stage performers everyone was talking about last month, but it’s a new day and Malek is “traveling at the speed of light.” Call him Mr. Fahrenheit.

Beautiful Boy, a drama about drug addiction directed by Belgian filmmaker Felix Van Groeningen (The Broken Circle Breakdown), is a neatly packaged picture, for better or worse. It’s reminiscent of an episode of A&E’s Intervention — but one of those really dramatic shows where it takes the family forever to convince their loved one who is hooked on heroin to go to rehab only to see them quit the program the following day. Beautiful Boy seems to have all the pieces it needs to tell a heartbreaking true story about a teenager on a downward spiral because of his dependency on crystal meth. The film is adapted from two memoirs — Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction by David Sheff, and Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines by David’s son, Nic Sheff. As the co-writers of the screenplay, Van Groeningen and Oscar nominee Luke Davies (Lion) consider both sides of the narrative and allow for David’s and Nic’s perspectives to get equal time to flourish and intensify. It helps immeasurably that behind the characters of David and Nic are Steve Carell (Foxcatcher) and Timothée Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name), a pair of Academy Award-nominated actors who portray a helpless father and dispirited son with such amazing conviction. It’s

especially true for Chalamet, whose range in the film expands and leads him into some incredibly vulnerable places as a young man with no way of beating his addiction on his own. As David, Carell gives his best performance since landing an Oscar nod for 2014’s Foxcatcher. Just as the lyrics to Lennon’s “Beautiful Boy” reveal, Carell plays a devoted parent (as do Amy Ryan as his mother and Maura Tierney as his stepmom) who would do anything to save his son from his demons (in one scene, he snorts meth in an attempt to understand what Nic is feeling). Carell’s role speaks to the heart of what makes Beautiful Boy a powerful, albeit imperfect, account of a family’s fight for survival. One could argue that to make a more significant impression, Groeningen and Davies should have pulled back the curtain to expose some of the darkest corners of drug addiction instead of simply showing audiences the scenarios that explore the hopes, disappointments and fears of the characters. With Carell and Chalamet at the forefront, however, Beautiful Boy is still an insightful and uplifting father-son story where unconditional love is the real star of the film.

–Kiko Martinez

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A24

TriStar Pictures

Dimension Films

Newmarket Films

Clockwise from bottom left: Legend, The Devil and Daniel Webster, The Witch, The Passion of the Christ, The Prophecy, Angel Heart

The Devil Made Me Write It

RKO Radio Pictures

6(66) cinematic Satans who will have you clutching your rosary BY KIKO MARTINEZ

A

s a movie character, the Devil has been interpreted in countless ways over the years — from a persuasive litigator searching for a surrogate in the 1997 thriller The Devil’s Advocate to a sensitive loner who impales his abusive lover Saddam Hussein in the 1999 animated film South Park: Bigger, Longer, Uncut. For this list, we’ll keep our picks to the actual proprietor of Hell and not his spawn (The Omen) or a random demon like Pazuzu (The Exorcist). With that said, say your prayers.

WALTER HUSTON – THE DEVIL AND DANIEL WEBSTER

Never mind that he conjures up the dead and steals peach pies – there is a moment in this 1941 film where the Devil, known as Mr. Scratch, breaks the fourth wall by fiendishly grinning and pointing at the audience as if to say he can see inside their soul.

TIM CURRY – LEGEND

Tim Curry might get more attention for his equally unsettling portrayal of Pennywise the Clown in the 1990 TV mini-series It, but as Darkness in the ominous 1985 fairytale Legend, he is the stuff of nightmares. Plus, he’s a poet: “I require the solace of the shadows and the dark of the night. Sunshine is my destroyer.”

ROBERT DE NIRO – ANGEL HEART

Universal Pictures

You don’t know Robert De Niro’s character Louis Cyphre (a homophone for Lucifer, get it?) is the Devil until the end of this 1987 horror thriller, but there are clues throughout the film. As Cyphre, De Niro is calm

and cool as he guides the hand of a private investigator (Mickey Rourke) to do his bidding.

VIGGO MORTENSEN – THE PROPHECY

Contrary to popular belief, Christopher Walken is not the Devil in the 1995 horror movie The Prophecy. The role of the soft-spoken Lucifer is played by Mortensen, who finds himself at the center of a war against mankind. The film isn’t very good, but Mortensen has his moments of subtle creepiness.

ROSALINDA CELENTANO – THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST

As an androgynous being shrouded in a black cloak, Satan attempts to tempt Jesus in the controversial Mel Gibson-directed 2004 drama The Passion of the Christ. Later, as Jesus is flogged, the Devil walks amongst the onlookers holding a demonic-looking baby.

DANIEL CHAUDHRY – THE WITCH

The Devil takes the form of a damned goat named Black Philip in this 2015 New England horror folktale by first-time director Robert Eggers. Black Phillip watches over a Puritan family possessed by witchcraft during the early 17th century. When Phillip finally speaks (“Wouldst thou like to live deliciously?”), you’ll swear off cabrito forever. sacurrent.com | October 31-November 6, 2018 | CURRENT

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CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com


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twin liquors

It Put a Spell on You

Walt Disney Pictures

How Disney brainwashed millions of millennials into believing Hocus Pocus is a Halloween classic

T

he power of nostalgia is strong, my friends. How else could a movie like the third-rate, family-friendly 1993 horror comedy Hocus Pocus — a critically-panned, box-office bomb featuring a rat-toothed Bette Midler hamming it up harder than Nic Cage on psychostimulants — be considered a Halloween classic by a large swath of seemingly sensible millennials? Simply put, millennials: you’ve been had. Hexed. Convinced. Conditioned. You’ve been brainwashed into believing a story about a trio of bumbling witches who seek revenge on a town after being brought back from the dead is actually a good movie. It’s not, and its rise to cult status in the last 25 years is completely undeserving. When Hocus Pocus hit theaters on July 16, 1993 (presumably because Walt Disney Pictures didn’t want to compete in October with the superior The Nightmare Before Christmas), it quickly fizzled out, but not before a cauldron-full of well-respected critics like Roger Ebert from the Chicago Sun-Times and Janet Maslin from The New York Times slammed the movie as “thoroughly unpleasant” and “an unholy mess.” Of course, fans of Hocus Pocus could use the excuse that snobby, cynical film critics were too busy fawning over Schindler’s List that year to care about a kids’ movie. You could also say that just because a movie doesn’t do well at the box office doesn’t mean it’s bad. The latter, of course, is entirely true. But Hocus Pocus isn’t The Princess Bride

or The Iron Giant or The Wizard of Oz — three other family films that didn’t do great at the theater, but are justifiably beloved today. Hocus Pocus didn’t become a cult classic because it was a once-snubbed cinematic survivor that naturally found its way into the hearts of children everywhere. No, since the mid-to-late-1990s, Hocus Pocus was mindlessly dispensed programming — a movie that basically played on a loop for 31 days straight every October on the Disney Channel (later ABC Family, now Freeform) – a movie perfectly matched for pre-Lizzie Maguire tweens looking for something to watch on cable around Halloween while their older siblings were in the basement watching Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees split heads. Face it, millennials. Disney had the platform and took advantage of your impressionable minds. You don’t really like Hocus Pocus. Your memories as a 10-year-old kid are just telling you that you do. If other ooky-spooky ’90s movies like Casper, Matilda, The Addams Family or The Witches were shoved in your eyeballs with the same consistency as Hocus Pocus was during your youth, you would’ve likely worn your hair like Cousin Itt to the homecoming dance. Instead, you’re here celebrating the 25th anniversary of a Halloween movie you’ve obviously put too much sentimental value on – a Halloween movie that is essentially the cinematic equivalent of petrified candy corn. –Kiko Martinez

FALLIDAY PREVIEW WEEK NOVember 1 -10 Get ready for the most wonderful time of the year

Signature Event Series Deep Eddy Holiday Cocktail How To San Antonio Cocktail Conference Ticket Launch

Saturday November 3, 2018 2-5pm San Antonio Marketplace at Bitters & 281

TWIN LIQUO R S. CO M Tastings are free and open to the public. Must be 21+ to participate. Please drink responsibly.

sacurrent.com | October 31-November 6, 2018 | CURRENT

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36  CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com


food Kimura

THE BIG SPOON

Weather woes are a thing for SA restaurants BY JESS ELIZARRARAS

F

rom September 1 through sometime last week, it rained a total of 28 days in our suddenly Seattle-esque city. That’s a whole February’s worth of rain. It’s an entire zombie-movie timeline’s worth of dreary, gloomy, wet skies. We don’t usually see this weather until November or December. Compound that with cold and flu season, and a mild case of Seasonal Affective Disorder (which had my boyfriend looking up light therapy lamps on Amazon), and I might not have been the most enthusiastic eater in recent memory. Still, a girl’s gotta eat, right? Feed a cold, or something along those lines. But the minute my sinuses became clogged and heavy with gunk (thanks, mold from aforementioned rain), all I wanted was soup, fideo, caldo, ramen, pho – and literally nothing else would do. It’s not like I could taste much, anyway… Unfortunately, the weather plays a huge part in where we choose to dine or whether we choose to eat out. Take a place like Rosella at the Garden. With its sprawling patio, it’s very weather dependent. “From a marketing standpoint, we haven’t stressed the point that you can still come in and shop,” owner Charles Gonzalez said.

“There’s a definite correlation between wet rainy days or the other extreme, hot days.” To be sure, this isn’t a San Antonio-specific problem. Eater Dallas shared restaurant owner woes on October 16, citing owners’ pleas for support. We’re not that different from the Big D. Chef-driven restaurants here are struggling, too. Take it from the guy that owns five of them. “It’s a tough time for restaurants. I’m specifically speaking for ‘chef driven.’ Not your favorite chain restaurant, or Mexican joint. I can guarantee you,” said Jason Dady via text. “The chef-driven market is suffering, especially the ones that were banking on patio weather. Anyone says otherwise, they are lying.” The nasty weather hurts established eateries, owners and newbies alike. Fat Tummy Empanada, which opened a brick-and-mortar location on the city’s West Side this August, also put out a call on social media asking for support after a few weeks of slow business. Restaurants can only accommodate and adapt up to a point. For instance, the Bottling Department Food Hall has board games and rainy day food. The Bread Box delivers. Piat-

ti’s will make you a hot toddy. The Jerk Shack, which has no indoor seating, has added soup to the menu and complimentary coffee and tea while people wait for their orders. The Point Park & Eats will package beer to-go in cans, bottles and growlers, and most of the food trucks will take carryout orders. And most businesses are partnered with delivery services like Postmates, Uber Eats, Grub Hub or DoorDash, though those services eat away at their profit margins. Yes, call in those to-go orders. Yes, you should tip the person packing your meals. I could point to global warming and how we’re just going to have to deal with crazier storms and weather patterns and how much that’ll affect crops and farmers and restaurants. But I don’t want to end this on a particularly dreary (but realistic) note. Enjoy the warm days we have left on patios – it’s currently 75 and breezy as I write this – but don’t forget to support your favorite local haunt when the weather becomes less than ideal. Buy the wellies. Put on the raincoat. Use your best judgment. It’s just a little rain.

Contact the author: flavor@sacurrent.com

,

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food Remember Them

San Anto goes all in for Dia de Muertos BY JESS ELIZARRARAS

B La Panaderia

Pan de Muerto INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup whole milk 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces Zest of 3 oranges (use a microplane or grater)

y the time this publishes, two of the city’s major Dia de los Muertos celebrations, adopted from the Mexican holidays that honor the lives of deceased children and adults on November 1 and 2, will have taken place. But there’s still plenty to celebrate (check out the full listing on page 14). The city’s Mexican ties, last year’s box-office hit, Coco, and San Antonio’s general love of partying could point to why we’ve connected to this holiday, but the food aspect doesn’t hurt either. Building altars starts by recreating a loved one’s favorite meal or dessert (soups and lentils for my maternal grandfather, chiles pequin and Mexican Coke for my paternal grandfather) and finding their go-to pan dulce, or displaying pan de muerto. Found at most panaderias in San Antonio, pan de muerto is a variation on pan dulce with star anise and either orange flower or orange zest, decorated with “crossbones” across the top. Find family-sized versions at La Panaderia for $18 (available for pre-order with threedays notice) or individual loaves for $3.25. Model the loaves after your late loved ones at Panifico Bake Shop or Bedoy’s Bakery, where large doll-shaped muertos are baked to resemble military personnel, nurses, doctors and can be customized (prices vary). For Cariño Cortez, chef at Viva Villa and part of the Mi Tierra Family, which displays a massive altar year-round, Dia de Muertos is an opportunity to get back into the kitchen, and bake for those we’ve lost. She shared her recipe for pan de muerto with us below.

bubbles, 5 to 10 minutes. Mix the flour, sugar and salt on a work surface. Make a well in the center. Gradually pour the yeast mixture and the milk mixture into the well while mixing with your hand. Knead until you have a nice, uniform dough, about 10 minutes. The dough should be smooth but still slightly sticky. If it seems too sticky, add more flour.

3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour; more as needed

Put the dough in a large, lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap or a towel, and leave in a warm place until doubled in size, 1 to 1-1/2 hours. If you have a stove on top of an oven, you can heat your oven to 400 and turn it off and place the bowl on top of the stove. Or heat the oven to 175 degrees, turn it off and wait 20 minutes and place the bowl in the oven.

1/4 cup granulated sugar

TO FORM THE BREAD

1 teaspoon Orange Extract 3 large eggs, lightly beaten 1/4 ounce active dry yeast

1 tsp. kosher salt Vegetable oil as needed

FOR THE TOPPING

2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted 1/4 cup granulated sugar

Cut off a piece of dough about the size of a small orange and reserve. Divide the remaining dough in half and shape the pieces on a lightly floured surface into two rounds. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or my favorite, a silicone mat; put the dough rounds on it and flatten the tops with your hands.

Put the milk, butter and orange zest in the microwave for 15 seconds, stir until the butter melts. Let it cool until warm. Discard the orange zest, add the orange extract, and whisk in the eggs.

Take the reserved dough and roll small dough pieces and a large button sized dough piece to go on top. Just wet the top of the dough pieces with water and overlap the rolled pieces of dough and place a small round piece on top. This is supposed to represent the bones in the pan de muerto.

Dissolve the yeast in 1/4 cup lukewarm water (no hotter than 110° F) and let stand until the mixture

Meanwhile, position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F.

TO MAKE THE DOUGH

La Panaderia

Bake until the loaves have a golden color, 35 to 40 minutes. Cover the loaves loosely with foil and continue to bake until their bottoms are browned. Remove from the oven and cool for a few minutes. Finally, melt a few tablespoons of butter and brush it on the bread and sprinkle some white granulated sugar on top. Courtesy of Cariño Cortez/mexi-modern.com sacurrent.com | October 31-November 6, 2018 | CURRENT

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food | nightlife COCKTAILS OF THE WEEK

Witchy brews for your Halloween enjoyment BY ERIN WINCH

D

ouble, double, toil and trouble, fire burn and drink bubble? Halloween is here and, with it, cocktails that will help you celebrate the spooky, scary side of the famed day. Two particular bars are whipping up macabre concoctions: Bar Du Mon Ami in Alamo Heights, and Piatti at the Eilan Market. The Dark Arts, the featured cocktail from Bar Du Mon Ami, is a spin on the gimlet. The drink was created by bartender Rachel Mong, who combined gin, lime juice, simple syrup, black dye and edible glitter to make a shiny, black magic tipple perfect for slamming back or sipping — your choice. Mong takes a simple, tart, already well-balanced cocktail (the reason the gimlet is a classic), and adds a fun spin on it. The Dark Arts is available at Bar Du Mon Ami through

Erin Winch

Halloween or as long as supplies last. Though you could always resort to using a little bit of activated charcoal at home to recreate the same effect. Piatti’s cocktail, the Count Daiqula, is a combination of silver rum, lime, simple, aquafaba (a vegan-friendly egg white substitute), orange bitters and Peychaud’s bitters. This themed drink was created by bar manager Matthew Collett who says, “I typically come up with a cool or fun seasonal name first, then the recipe grows from that.” The seasonal cocktail this time around is a variation of a sour and a daiquiri. These creations are only available for a short

Erin Winch

time, though, so make sure you make the trip. The Count Daiqula will be available at the Eilan location through Halloween night. No matter whether you are in the Alamo Heights area or up north near La Cantera and the Rim, there is a spooky libation out there for you to enjoy. Both the Dark Arts from Mon Ami and the Count Daiqula from Piatti will run you $10 a piece. Erin Winch writes about boozin’ in the Alamo City on her blog Drinking In SA. Follow @drinking.in.SA on Instagram to keep up with the SA drink scene.

HAPPY HOUR HOUND

Meadow’s grown-up offerings BY ERIN WINCH

E

Erin Winch

arlier this season, on September 22nd, Meadow Neighborhood Eatery & Bar opened on the North Side in The Alley off of Bitters, just a short distance away from U.S. 281. While the restaurant moved into the old Tre Enoteca location, owners P.J. and Lindsey Edwards have a new concept they have introduced in the area that focuses on local and seasonal ingredients that represent South Texas. Their idea of southern seasonal cooking carries over to their happy-hour menu as well. The special menu features a variety of appetizers ranging from a house-made biscuit for $3 to blistered shishito peppers for $6. Their drink specials are excellent as well with five featured cocktails ranging from $5-$6, wine for $5-$7 and beer at $2. I visited as Meadow opened at 5 p.m. and was the first one in. I opted to sit at the bar, though there was ample space at the large community

table and some of the lounge areas inside of the restaurant. I ordered Meadow’s creamed pea hummus, a $5 dish that is served with house-made pita and purple bell peppers, a vegetable I wasn’t even aware of until stopping in at the local spot. The dish paired perfectly with my cocktail, the Bitters & 281, a cleverly named drink that combines grapefruit, gin, tonic and bitters for a light and refreshing result. At only $5, the drink was perfect for sipping on the patio or at the bar. With my bill only coming out to $10, I was able to get out the door without breaking the bank. Soon after my food arrived a couple of groups trickled in, mostly older, meeting for happy hour in parties of twos and threes to catch up with friends. It’s the type of place where you can make small talk with your neighbor or be left to yourself. 555 W. Bitters Road, Suite 110, (210) 481-4214.

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Chilly weather may be kicking in, but these live shows promise to keep you warm

music

The Lucky Seven Shows You Can’t Miss

cord called Ego Death, and it pretty much said, “Hi, hello, R&B is far from over, folks.” If you’ve listened to “Girl,” you know that THEY. DON’T. PLAY. $32$96, 7pm, The Aztec Theatre, 104 N. St. Mary’s St., theaztectheatre.com.

MINISTRY // Friday, December 14 Less than a year after their performance at the Aztec Theatre, industrial metal god’s Ministry have announced a return to San Antonio. That’s right – good ‘ol Al Jourgensen, who’s now 60, and the boys are headed to the Alamo City to deliver another onslaught of their grinding industrial tracks to a city that’s been pretty supportive of the group since their rise to fame in the mid-’80s. So, if you missed them last year, here’s your chance to see these guys as they continue to tour in support of their latest release AmeriKKKant. $30, 6pm, The Aztec Theatre, 104 N. St. Mary’s St., theaztectheatre.com. CIRCA SURVIVE // Saturday, November 24

BY CHRIS CONDE

O

h, my god, this cool weather tho! There’s no more telling sign that we’re headed to the end of the year than that first cold snap that sends us into fits of caldo eating. OK, maybe it’s not that dramatic, but we do love caldo when it gets cold outside, which also made us think of what shows we’ve got left in 2018. Where did this year go!? That’s right – we were going to shows and living our best lives. And as we continue to do so, here’s a lucky seven shows we absolutely can’t miss before the year is up.

SPARTA // Saturday, November 17 It seemed with At the Drive In’s reunion (minus Jim Ward) last year, talks and speculation of a potential Sparta reunion would also take place. Anddddd, lucky us, that’s exactly what happened. The artpunk, post-hardcore band made up of At the Drive In members formed in 2001 after a combination of excessive hype, relentless touring and artistic differences contributed to the demise of ATDI. With Jim Ward at the helm, the band released a few albums over the years but went on hiatus in 2008. Releasing a track in 2012 and then again in 2017, fans were stoked to find out in November 2017 that a new lineup would be announced, consisting of returning members Jim Ward, Matt Miller and Gabriel Gonzalez, along with new member Cully Symington on drums. A new song, “Graveyard Luck,” was released on the same day. Another song, “Cat Scream,” was released in April along with a tour announcement that included a San Antonio date at Paper Tiger. If you dig that early 2000s post-hardcore sound, you’ll probably want to be at this show. $17-$19, 7pm, Paper Tiger, 2410 N. St. Mary’s St., papertigersatx.com. CRYSTAL METHOD // Saturday, December 1

I don’t even get mad anymore when artists from the 1990s and 2000s announce a date in San Antonio. Still, I can’t help but ask, “More?” Anyway, next

Courtesy of The Internet

up in this revolving door of throwback musicians is beloved electronic duo the Crystal Method. Along with the likes of the Prodigy, the Chemical Brothers, etc., the Crystal Method helped pioneer the big beat movement – a mix of heavy hip-hop breakbeats and synthesizer-generated loops and patterns that often showed up on soundtracks to blockbuster hits like, you now, The Matrix. The Las Vegas-born duo hits the Paper Tiger this fall so bust out those Jncos and Airwalks, fam. This is one for the books. $21, 7pm, Paper Tiger, 2410 N. St. Mary’s St., papertigersatx.com.

MARC REBILLET // Tuesday, December 18

Chances are if you go down a rabbit hole of Facebook videos for hours at a time before falling asleep, you’ve most likely come across one or two of this musician’s videos. Marc Rebillet has become a viral Internet sensation, with his quirky personality that translates into well-written and well-executed looping patterns that hit a variety of genres. Equally hilarious and impressive, Rebillet uses a loop station combined with synthesizers, percussion instruments and his own voice to create songs live in his room or in bars, and it’s pretty fucking awesome. Lucky for us, Rebillet is headed to Paper Tiger, and we’re gonna say it’s a Christmas miracle. $10-$12, Tue Dec. 18, 7pm, Paper Tiger, 2410 N. St. Mary’s St., papertigersatx.com.

L THE INTERNET // Friday, November 16 There’s been quite a slew of shows coming to the Alamo City that we’ve been losing our shit over. From Cardi B at Mala Luna to J. Cole and Ministry at the end of the year and even our own San Antonio Music Showcase, it’s been a Grade-A year in the live show department. Adding to the list is the Grammy-nominated group The Internet, one of the best R&B bands on the planet that you still maybe have not heard of. Back in 2015, they released a re-

Anthony Green is the nicest weirdo you could ever meet. In 2010, I got lucky enough to open for his band Circa Survive at The White Rabbit two days in a row. During those days, I briefly got to kick it with him and chat about music and life and watch fans freak out during meet-and-greets. “You’re the banjo guy, right?” he asked me excitedly after passing him backstage (back then I was doing a banjo rap shtick). “Yeah,” I said, a little intimidated by how piercing his blue eyes were (the boy ain’t ugly) and also trying to figure out if his high energy was just an act. Turns out, Green is just a high energy dude. I guess it’s hard to judge someone’s character in two days, but after my set the second night, he invited me to finish the Blue Sky Noise tour with him, and I appropriately was more than a little stoked for the offer. For financial reasons, I wasn’t able to go on tour with Circa Survive, but even just being asked is a cool token I still keep in my pocket, and from what I hear from other musician friends I’ve told, Green has a heart for helping up-andcoming musicians. P cool. To get to the point of all of this, Circa Survive is headed back to San Antonio in support of their last album The Amulet on Saturday, November 24, at the Alamo City Music Hall. A fan before and after getting to play a couple shows with Green, few vocalists bring the energy to the stage like Green and even fewer can soar above post-hardore chord progressions like Green does in his bands. If you’ve never seen Circa live, now’s your chance, fam. $25-$30, 6:30pm, Alamo City Music Hall, 1305 E. Houston St., alamocitymusichall.com.

BONE THUGS-N-HARMONY // Tuesday, November 20 “And I miss my uncle Chaaaarles y’all!” If you’re like the rest of us and scream that part of “Crossroads” when it comes on then chances are you’re about to get stoked on some big news: After a stellar solo performance from the group’s Bizzy Bone, the entire Bone Thugs N Harmony is coming back to town. Now, it’s not like the Cleveland quintet aren’t in town farily often, but we know what we like as San Antonians, and Wish, Flesh, Bizzy, Layzie and Krayzie are definitely on the menu. You know we couldn’t have rounded out this list without sticking an SA fave on the lineup. $33-$133, 7pm, Vibes Event Center, 1211 E. Houston St., vibeseventcenter.com.

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music | music Picks RUSS p

DUCKWRTH 5

Atlanta rapper Russ announced the continuation of his North American trek with the “I See You Tour Part 2” earlier this year. The 13 new dates kicked off October 19, including a stop in San Antonio, before wrapping up November 15 in Seattle. This Halloween, the “Losin’ Control” singer will perform at the AT&T Center. We usually don’t go into Wikipedia-type info when we talk about artists, but for how young this dude is, Russ has accomplished a lot. The hip-hop recording artist had breakout success over the past year with his debut album, There’s Really A Wolf, released in May 2017. Russ surpassed 1.1 billion audio streams in the U.S. in 2017, making him one of Nielsen Music’s 30 most streamed artists of the year. This placed him above a number of superstar acts, including Beyoncé, Coldplay and Childish Gambino. He’s racked up six sold-out tours, more than 676-million YouTube views, 10-million monthly listeners on Spotify and over 2 billion plays of his vast catalog, all sung word-for-word by his dedicated fan base at sold-out shows across the globe. Kinda gnarly stuff, and if you haven’t made your Halloween plans yet, this probably will be a show you want to be at. $39-$59.95, 9pm, AT&T Center, One AT&T Center Parkway, attcenter.com. – Chris Conde

Every once in a while, in the midst of an era in hip-hop where you literally don’t even have to rap to have a chart-topping single in the genre, an artist shines a little brighter. Right now, it’s Duckwrth, an LA rapper who doesn’t sound like he’s following any kind of trend with his production and lyrical execution. There are moments that feel like Outkast and N.E.R.D., and then moments that feel completely unique. There are rappers who are trying to be rappers, and then there are artists who happen to have chosen hip-hop as a medium. Duckwrth is the latter. The 30-year-old rapper hits Paper Tiger on Halloween. If you’re trying to figure out where hip-hop is going, hit this show up. $13-$60, 8pm, Paper Tiger, 2410 N. St. Mary’s St., papertigersatx.com. – CC

Wednesday, October 31

Wednesday, October 31

SHE WANTS REVENGE + MYKKI BLANCO x Friday, November 2

“I want to hold you close / Skin pressed against me tight /.... I want to fucking tear you apart.” There’s something sexy and disturbing about She Wants Revenge’s lyrics on their mega-hit “Tear You Apart,” which undoubtedly helped launch their career. The band is headed to San Antonio on Friday for a show at Paper Tiger, so if alt-electro-pop from

Courtesy of Duckwrth

Next Big Thing PR

the early aughts is your thing, this is a show you won’t want to miss. Strangely, also on the bill is rapper Mykki Blanco – a queer artist who’s been hitting it hard in paint for a minute. $26-$31.50, Fri Nov 2, 8pm, Paper Tiger, 2410 N. St. Mary’s St., papertigersatx.com. – CC

your favorite post-punk groups like Joy Division, Tears for Fears and Depeche Mode, but add a touch of shoegaze and contemporary indie elements to keep it fresh. If you missed them at South By Southwest earlier this year, here’s your chance to catch one of the most promising up-and-coming acts in the genre. $10-$12, Saturday, November 3, 7pm, Paper Tiger, 2410 N. St. Mary’s St., papertigersatx.com. – CC

DEATH BELLS 5 Saturday, November 3

Courtesy of Russ

Oh, the reverberating darkness and the stifling pain! If you’re like us and are living for this recent post-punk revival, then Death Bells most certainly needs to be on your sad mijo/mija playlist. Hailing from Sydney, this six-piece combines all the classic stylings from

Tracy Nguyen

sacurrent.com | October 31-November 6, 2018 | CURRENT

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music | music Picks

NF \

Monday, November 5

On the heels of a newly released track “WHY,” Michigan rapper NF announced an upcoming North American headline tour earlier this year. Anytime a white rapper comes out with some relatively technical flow in his bars, it’s easy to say stuff like, “He sort of sounds like Eminem,” since Mathers, arguably, is still the most technical rapper alive. And it’s not like the dude sounds just like Em – NF definitely has his own voice, but the comparison here is more a compliment to skill rather than saying he’s just ripping off Mathers. With NF, especially on “WHY,” the 27-year-old rapper showcases a wide range of cadences while getting personal on the track and letting listeners in on some his fears – the kind of stuff that re-affirms why he’s a platinum-certified artist. Kicking off October 2 in Columbus, the tour rolls through theaters and arenas across the country and touches down in San Antonio on Monday at the Aztec Theatre. $35-$40, 7pm, Aztec Theatre, 104 N. St. Mary’s St., theaztectheatre.com. – CC

Courtesy of ZION I

ZION I + CASUAL OF HIEROGLYPHICS L Sunday, November 4

When The Source magazine (arguably one of the most trusted and respected publications in hip-hop) nominates your debut album as best independent album of the year, folks should pay attention. And most of us hip-hop heads did just that back in 2000 when the Oakland duo (now just rapper Baba Zumbi) dropped their first record Mind Over Matter. Part of the Bay Area rap community, which includes Hieroglyphics (whose member Casual is on tour with Zion I), both rappers helped to contribute to the iconic West Coast hip-hop sound that continues to evolve and take shape, but still holds true to its early rap roots. Catch both MCs at Paper Tiger on Sunday, November 4, at Paper Tiger with “The Slap Frost” tour mates Z-Man, Vocab Slick, DJ True Justice, Save1, DT The Artist, hosted by DJ Notion + Spy MC. $15-$45, Sun Nov 4, 7pm, Paper Tiger, 2410 N. St. Mary’s St., papertigersatx.com. – CC

JA RULE + ASHANTI 5

Adrenaline PR

TECH N9NE L Courtesy of NF

Sunday, November 4

Lol, wait… Did we just jump back to 2001? We’re asking because fucking Ja Rule and Ashanti are coming to San Antonio. That’s right. This Sunday, the duo that brought you one of the biggest hits of the early 2000s (“Always On Time”) are somehow on tour and coming to town because, like we’ve said a million times before, San Antonio lives for all things nostalgia. And if for some reason you don’t believe me, tell me why Janet Jackson, Guns N’ Roses and Green Day were all here within a week of each other? Hmm? Riddle me that, readers. And maybe since Ja Rule was one of the main organizers of the hilarious disaster that was Fyre Fest, jumping on tour might be a way to remind us of the Ja Rule America once loved … or maybe it’s just a way to get out from under the debt the rapper/organizer could incur from the $100 million class action lawsuit filed against him and fellow Fyre organizer Billy McFarland. If anything, the show will be your chance to bust out those Von Dutch trucker hats and bedazzled Ed Hardy shirts and, I don’t know, drop it like it’s hot? $59-$79, 7pm, Aztec Theatre, 104 N. St. Mary’s St., theaztectheatre.com. – CC 48

CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com

Courtesy of Ashanti

Tuesday, November 6

In hip-hop, the East Coast, West Coast and the South all have their distinctive sounds. From the East Coast’s complex lyricism to the South’s slowed-down, chopped-and-screwed style, each area has its own identity and contribution to the genre. So what did the Midwest bring to the table? Hip-hop heads will argue it’s the rapid-fire “chopper” style of Cleveland’s Bone Thugs-N-Harmony or Chicago’s Twista. Include on that list Kansas City’s Tech N9ne, who since the early ‘90s has been delivering a healthy dose of machine-gunfire verses. Jumping to several record companies before starting his Strange Music label in 1999, Tech N9ne, born Aaron Dontez Yates, assumed the role of black sheep in the hip-hop world. His lyrics are no-holds-barred, and he’s even brought on rock vocalists to collaborate, like Korn’s Jonathan Davis, who was featured on 2016’s “Starting To Turn.” Earlier this year, the rapper announced his 2018 “Independent Grind Tour,” a two-month, 40+ city trek across the United States. The tour will feature Dizzy Wright, Futuristic and Krizz Kaliko with a stop in San Antonio at the Aztec Theatre on Tuesday. $25-$45, 7pm, Aztec Theatre, 104 N. St. Mary’s St., theaztectheatre.com. – CC


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music | calendar SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 3

DWIGHT YOAKAM p

APA Agency

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 31

LIL XAN L

Even though the SoundCloud rapper traded in Xanax for Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, Lil Xan’s life is still a complete Xanarchy, as his mumble rap isn’t as notable as Xanspired memes. But hip hop’s biggest cry baby is always fun to watch on TMZ, and that should mean something. $27.50, Aztec Theatre, 7pm

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 1

PHORA

Young money Phora cashed in on a clothing line before blowing up musically, but more than $2 million later, he’s working on the actual music part of being a hip hop/designer/mogul in the same vein as Jay Z (Rocawear) and Kayne West (Yeezy). But with money in his pockets and dressed in his own styles, Phora is proving that there’s no shame in being a rap game designer. $30-$140, Alamo City Music Hall, 7pm

KEVIN MAX - EUROMAX 80’S EUROPOP NIGHT

Known as the edgy blonde singer in even edgier Christian, rap-turned-grunge-pop group dc Talk, famous for going against satanic ’90s alt-rock, Kevin Max is going solo – and 1980s – as he sings his way through some of the decade of excesses most iconic new-wave hits. $15-$50, Sam’s Burger Joint, 8pm

After starring as abusive assholes in Panic Room and Sling Blade, collaborating with indie sacred cow Beck on his critically lauded comeback 3 Pears, and being a bonafide country-fried legend since the 1980s, Dwight Yoakam could put the rest of his career on cruise control and live off his frozen biscuit brand Bakersfield Biscuits. But like any good country boy, Yoakam is going to be ambitious until his last dying, twangy breath. $40-$650, John T. Floore Country Store, 7pm

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 4

BOB LOG III

10/1/18 11/1/18

Like fellow renowned guitarist-with-a-gimmick Buckethead, the helmet-headed Bob Log makes his name with innovative six-string work. But he’s a little more lighthearted than the KFC-bucketed madman. Although his well-documented affinity for breasts and nipples could land him in creep territory, his guitar-driven dance parties will have you forget what is – and isn’t – politically correct on the dance floor. Free, The Mix, 7pm

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 5

WOLFMOTHER

There are two camps of Wolfmother thought: the first is that they are a badass throwback to the rock ’n’ roll wild west of the 1970s, comparable to swagger-slingin rebels Led Zeppelin, or they’re a cover-band that appropriates the hard blues rock style with no originality. Either way, they rock enough as a throwback, so either roll with it or away from it. $27-$32, Paper Tiger, 8pm

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 2

KANSAS

With hits such as nihilist anthem “Dust in the Wind” and the inescapable classic rock juggernaut “Carry on Wayward Son,” Kansas was new-age spiritual before the organic, non-GMO grocery revolution. On this tour, Kansas will perform the entirety of their best-selling record Point of Know Return, the one with “Dust in the Wind” on it. $44.50-$125, Tobin Center of the Performing Arts, 7:30pm

Emily Joyce

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I’m a 40-year-old married straight woman. I gave birth to our first kid in 2015 and our second earlier this year. My perineum tore and was stitched both times. I have not been able to have sex with penetration since having our second child. My OB/GYN said I’m “a little tighter now” due to the way the stitching was performed. My husband is very well endowed and I can’t imagine how on earth I’m ever going to get that thing back in me, let alone enjoy it. We have a history of pretty hot sex and I really miss it. I’ve been searching online for some sex toys to help me. I’ve never used sex toys before. I’ve always been able to have thrilling orgasms easily without any devices. I still can with manual stimulation. But I want to have sex with my husband. I’m confused and I just don’t know what I need to help me open back up and get through the pain. Please help! Thanks In Advance   “Unfortunately, this situation is very common – but luckily there are options to help her get her groove back,” said Dr. Rachel Gelman, a pelvic floor physical therapist at the Pelvic Health and Rehabilitation Center (pelvicpainrehab.com). Also sadly common: OB/GYNs shrugging off concerns like yours, TIA. “I see that all the time,” said Dr. Gelman. “Part of the problem is that the pelvic floor/muscles aren’t on most doctor’s radar. That’s due to many factors – cough, cough, insurance companies, cough, our dysfunctional health care system, cough – but to water it down, it’s the OB/GYN’s job to get someone through pregnancy and deliver a healthy baby. And when that’s accomplished, the feeling is their job is done.” But so long as you’re not able to have and enjoy PIV sex with your hung husband, TIA, there’s still work to do. “TIA needs to see a pelvic floor physical therapist,” said Dr. Gelman. “A good PT would be able to assess and treat any pelvic floor dysfunction, which is often the primary cause or a contributing factor for anyone experiencing pain with sex, especially after childbirth.” At this point Dr. Gelman began to

explain that pushing a living, breathing, screaming human being out of your body is an intense experience and I explained to Dr. Gelman that I’ve had to push a few living, breathing, screaming human beings out of my body, thank you very much. Dr. Gelman clarified that she was talking about “the trauma of labor and delivery,” something with which I have no experience. “Labor and delivery can have a significant impact on the pelvic floor muscles which can cause a myriad of symptoms,” said Dr. Gelman. Pain during PIV sex sits high on the list of those symptoms. “The fact that TIA had tearing with the deliveries means she most likely has scar tissue, and a PT would again be able to treat the scar to help decrease any hypomobility and hypersensitivity,” said Dr. Gelman. “A pelvic floor specialist can also instruct her in a home program which may include stretches, relaxation techniques, and dilators – dilators are graduated cylinders that are inserted vaginally to help stretch the vaginal opening and promote relaxation of the pelvic floor.” A set of “graduated cylinders” is essentially “a bouquet of dildos,” TIA. You start with the smallest dilator/dildo, inserting it every day until you can insert it without any pain or discomfort, and then you “graduate” (nudge, nudge) to the next “cylinder” (wink, wink). You can order a set of dilators online, TIA, but Dr. Gelman wants you to find a doc that specializes in sexual medicine first. “There are some good medical associations that she can check out for resources and to help locate a provider in her area,” said Dr. Gelman. “The websites of the International Society for the Study of Women’s Sexual Health (ISSWSH), the International Society for Sexual Medicine (ISSM) and the International Pelvic Pain Society (IPPS) are where she should start.” Follow Dr. Gelman on Instagram, @pelvichealthsf.

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“I’m Certain”– some hidden veracity. ACROSS 1 Countrified 7 Allison Janney sitcom 10 Haydn’s nickname 14 Fleecy fabric 15 Yoko who turned 85 in 2018 16 Racetrack shape 17 Get louder 20 “GymnopÈdies” composer Satie (or “Jeopardy!” and crossword champion Agard) 21 Hesitant sounds 22 “Right Now (Na Na Na)” rapper 23 Considered groovy, man 24 Slo-___ fuse 25 AKA, in the business world 26 ___ in “Charlie” 29 Fountain reward of myth 32 Alpine cottage 35 Haven’t yet paid 36 Balletic bend 37 Varnish ingredient 38 Jim Acosta’s network 39 Golden Globes category 40 Solemn promise 41 Some people’s preferred pronoun 42 One not responsible for the bad news 43 Hit the mother lode 46 Shameless network, for short 47 Baby anteater

48 Noah’s ride 49 Suffix in geometry 52 Bread served with aloo gobi 54 Takeover try 55 Prefix meaning “one billionth” 56 Buddy cop show of the 1970s 60 Look sullen 61 Jellied British fish 62 “Certainly, Monsieur!” 63 March participants? 64 7-Across partner, maybe 65 Phrase before “Go!” DOWN 1 “___ T for Teen” 2 Aboriginal name for Australia’s Ayers Rock 3 Parsley bit 4 Do horribly 5 Closely monitored hosp. area 6 Juliet, for one 7 Mineralogist with a scale 8 Number of times the Milwaukee Brewers have appeared in the World Series 9 Not fixed 10 Sport involving horses 11 Friendly, like some relatives 12 Jackie Brown actress Grier 13 It’s made with warm fermentation 18 ___: Ragnarok

19 Adequate 24 Vitamin also known as PABA 25 Early morning 27 “Once upon ___ ...” 28 Clip hedges 29 1912 Nobel Peace Prize winner Root 30 Trio of trios 31 “Everybody gets a car!” impresario 32 Mr. Show costar David 33 “English Toffee” candy bar 34 Carpenter or Ride, e.g. 38 Dale’s cartoon pal 39 Pack of cards 41 Soundly defeated 42 Pointer, for one 44 They’ll look over W-2s 45 Something stored in the cloud? 49 Los ___, California 50 As scheduled 51 Like a game for the record books, perhaps 53 They can be fine or graphic 54 Like a worn tire 55 Night, in Nice 56 Getaway spot 57 Bunch 58 House support 59 Artist’s selection ANSWER ON PAGE 17

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etc FREE WILL ASTROLOGY BY ROB BREZNY ARIES (March 21-April 19): You have officially arrived at the heart of the most therapeutic phase of your cycle. Congratulations! It’s an excellent time to fix what’s wrong, hurt, or distorted. You will attract more help than you can imagine if you summon an aggressive approach toward finding antidotes and cures. A good way to set the tone for your aggressive determination to feel better is to heed this advice from poet Maya Angelou: “Take a day to heal from the lies you’ve told yourself and the ones that have been told to you.” TAURUS (April 20-May 20): U2’s singer Bono, born under the sign of Taurus, says that all of us suffer from the sense that something’s missing from our lives. We imagine that we lack an essential quality or experience, and its absence makes us feel sad and insufficient. French philosopher Blaise Pascal referred to this emptiness as “a God-shaped hole.” Bono adds that “you can never completely fill that hole,” but you may find partial fixes through love and sex, creative expression, family, meaningful work, parenting, activism, and spiritual devotion. I bring this to your attention, Taurus, because I have a strong suspicion that in the coming weeks you will have more power to fill your God-shaped hole than you’ve had in a long time. GEMINI (May 21-June 20): “Most of our desires are clichés, right? Ready to wear, one size fits all. I doubt if it’s even possible to have an original desire anymore.” So says a character in Gemini author Tobias Wolff’s short story “Sanity.” Your assignment in the coming weeks, Gemini, is to refute and rebel against this notion. The cosmic rhythms will work in your favor to the degree that you cultivate innovative yearnings and unique urges. I hope you’ll make it your goal to have the experiences necessary to stir up an outbreak of original desires. CANCER (June 21-July 22): If you’re a typical member of the Cancerian tribe, you’re skilled at responding constructively when things go wrong. Your intelligence rises up hot and strong when you get sick or rejected or burned. But if you’re a classic Crab, you have less savvy in dealing with triumphs. You may sputter when faced with splashy joy, smart praise, or lucky breaks. But everything I just said is meant to be a challenge, not a curse. One of the best reasons to study astrology is to be aware of the potential shortcomings of your sign so you can outwit and overcome them. That’s why I think that eventually you’ll evolve to the point where you won’t be a bit flustered when blessings arrive. And the immediate future will bring you excellent opportunities to upgrade your response to good fortune. 54

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): “Each of us needs something of an island in her life,” said poet John Keats. “If not an actual island, at least some place, or space in time, in which to be herself, free to cultivate her differences from others.” According to my reading of the astrological omens, Leo, you’ll be wise to spend extra time on your own island in the next two weeks. Solitude is unlikely to breed unpleasant loneliness, but will instead inspire creative power and evoke inner strength. If you don’t have an island yet, go in search! (P.S.: I translated Keats’ pronouns into the feminine gender.) VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): I’m rooting for you to engage in experimental intimacy, Virgo. I hope you’ll have an affinity for sweet blends and incandescent mixtures and arousing juxtapositions. To get in the right mood for this playful work, you could read love poetry and listen to uplifting songs that potentize your urge to merge. Here are a few lyrical passages to get you warmed up. 1. “Your flesh quivers against mine like moonlight on the sea.” —Julio Cortázar 2. “When she smiles like that she is as beautiful as all my secrets. —Anne Carson 3. “My soul is alight with your infinitude of stars . . . The flowers of your garden blossom in my body.” —Rabindranath Tagore 4. “I can only find you by looking deeper, that’s how love leads us into the world.” —Anne Michaels LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Of course I want you to have more money. I’d love for you to buy experiences that expand your mind, deepen your emotional intelligence, and foster your ability to create inspiring forms of togetherness. My soul would celebrate if you got access to new wealth that enabled you to go in quest of spiritual fun and educational adventures. On the other hand, I wouldn’t be thrilled about you spending extra cash on trivial desires or fancy junk you don’t really need. Here’s why I feel this way: to the extent that you seek more money to pursue your most righteous cravings, you’re likely to get more money. SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): “Penetralia” is a word that means the innermost or most private parts, the most secret and mysterious places. It’s derived from the same Latin term that evolved into the word “penetrate.” You Scorpios are of course the zodiac’s masters of penetralia. More than any other sign, you’re likely to know where the penetralia are, as well as how to get to them and what to do when you get to them. I suspect that this tricky skill will come in extra handy during the coming weeks. I bet your intimate adeptness with penetralia will bring you power, fun, and knowledge.

CURRENT | October 31-November 6, 2018 | sacurrent.com

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Sagittarian poet Rainer Maria Rilke suggested that we cultivate an alertness for the ever-present possibility of germination and gestation. On a regular basis, he advised, we should send probes down into the darkness, into our unconscious minds, to explore for early signs of awakening. And when we discover the forces of renewal stirring there in the depths, we should be humble and reverent toward them, understanding that they are as-yet beyond the reach of our ability to understand. We shouldn’t seek to explain and define them at first, but simply devote ourselves to nurturing them. Everything I just said is your top assignment in the coming weeks.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Aquarian environmentalist Edward Abbey spent much of his life rambling around in the great outdoors. He was an emancipated spirit who regarded the natural world as the only church he needed. In an eruption of ecstatic appreciation, he once testified that “Life is a joyous dance through daffodils beneath cerulean blue skies and then, then what? I forget what happens next.” And yet the truth is, Abbey was more than a wild-hearted Dionysian explorer in the wilderness. He found the discipline and diligence to write 23 books! I mention this, Aquarius, because now is a perfect time for you to be like the disciplined and diligent and productive version of Abbey.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): You’re in a phase of your cycle when your influence is at a peak. People are more receptive than usual to your ideas and more likely to want the same things you do. Given these conditions, I think the best information I can offer you is the following meditation by Capricorn activist Martin Luther King Jr. “Power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and anemic. Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice, and justice at its best is power correcting everything that stands against love.”

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): For renowned Piscean visual artist Anne Truitt (1921–2004), creating her work was high adventure. She testified that artists like her had “to catapult themselves wholly, without holding back one bit, into a course of action without having any idea where they will end up. They are like riders who gallop into the night, eagerly leaning on their horse’s neck, peering into a blinding rain.” Whether or not you’re an artist, Pisces, I suspect your life in the coming weeks may feel like the process she described. And that’s a good thing! A fun thing! Enjoy your ride.

THIS MODERN WORLD BY TOM TOMORROW


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San Antonio Current – October 31, 2018  
San Antonio Current – October 31, 2018