Vision quest Healing witH virtual reality See Arts&Culture, page 14
long sentence After 35 years behind bars, Cathy Woods awaits another day in court
s e rv i n g n o rt h e r n n e va d a , ta h o e a n d t r u c k e e
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Another community builder
Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review. I’m back after a holiday sojourn to visit Margot’s family in Pennsylvania. It was a nice, low-key trip. I caught up on a bunch of reading, much of it strictly for fun. Oddly enough, one book I read, for no real work-related reason, is one of the best journalism books I’ve read in years: Ronan Farrow’s Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators. Farrow, along with New York Times journalists Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey, won a Pulitzer for his work investigating sex abuse allegations against movie producer Harvey Weinstein— the blockbuster journalism that kick-started the Me Too movement. The book follows Farrow’s progress investigating the story—and also follows the private investigators hired by Weinstein’s lawyers to keep tabs on him and, if necessary, impede his progress. It reads like a political thriller, and it’s hard not to expect that it’ll be made into a movie within the decade. (That might be ironic since it’s partially an exposé of a movie producer, but, as the great Arthur Lee once sang, “The news today will be the movies for tomorrow.”) It’s a wild story—a real conspiracy that touches everyone from Quentin Tarantino and Rose McGowan to Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Farrow was an employee of NBC when started doing the work, but the network was hesitant to go after the extremely well-connected Weinstein, especially since they had a similarly prestigious predator in their own organization, Matt Lauer. Farrow eventually found a home for the story at the New Yorker. The book’s title refers to the abhorrent practice of buying the rights to stories, having the pertinent people sign non-disclosure agreements, and then intentionally burying the stories in a secret vault (literally as well as figuratively). This practice, hiding damaging stories so they never see the light of day, is the exact opposite of journalism. The National Enquirer and its parent company, American Media Inc., had a habit of doing it for stories about Weinstein. They also did it for stories about Trump.
Re “Community builders honored” (Left Foot Forward, Jan. 9): Ms. Leslie, thank you for taking the time to acknowledge these important people in our community. But, there is a very special person, that to my knowledge, hasn’t been thanked for her contributions to the homeless population of our city: Amber Lynn Dobson. She’s the founder of the non-profit organization We Care Volunteers. For over eight years, she has organized and instituted a program for feeding our homeless and underpaid people of our community. She has banded together with organizations such as The Reno Pirates, The Verdi Posse, Yelp! and others, not to mention the multitudes of individuals that volunteer their time and money to help. She’s one that not only feeds the bellies of those who have lost hope, she also feeds the soul with love and compassion. Let’s give her a “high five” for her outstanding community service. Michael McArthur Sparks
—BRAD BYNUM bradb@ ne ws r ev i ew . com
Old-school nonsense Junior Assembly of Reno is a local private, non-profit organization that encourages “scholarship, citizenship, and etiquette.” They host an annual, invitation-only formal dance at the National Bowling Stadium with a strict set of policies. These policies, taken directly from a dance invitation given to a student, explicitly state that “you must bring a guest of the opposite sex” and that “gentlemen wear tuxedos and ladies wear floor-length, formal dresses.” In addition to this, female invitees are not allowed to attend the event unaccompanied; a man is required to check-in their female guest. This organization prides itself on supporting and maintaining traditional “1940s values” and, apparently, blatant discrimination. The dance
Leslie, Eric Marks, Kelsey Penrose, Jessica Santina, Todd South, Luka Starmer, Kris Vagner, Bruce Van Dyke, Allison Young Our Mission: To publish great newspapers that are successful and enduring. To create a quality work environment that encourages employees to grow professionally while respecting personal welfare. To have a positive impact on our communities and make them better places to live. Editor Brad Bynum Associate Editor Jeri Davis Special Projects Editor Matt Bieker Calendar Editor Kelley Lang Contributors Amy Alkon, Jane K. Callahan, Mark Earnest, Bob Grimm, Oliver Guinan, Andrea Heerdt, Holly Hutchings, Shelia
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JANUARY 16, 2020 | VOL. 25, ISSUE 49
[was] held on Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020 and [required] that all students become members of the Junior Assembly organization via a one-time membership fee. Dance invitations and other documents are handed out by teachers at participating schools, and informational meetings regarding the dance are held after school using high school facilities. This means that Washoe County is helping to facilitate this dance every year. In response to this exclusionary event, a group of concerned students at Hug High School has been in correspondence with the Equity and Diversity team of WCSD to look into how the organization has been operating for years without interference from the district. Tiffany Young of the Equity and Diversity department has been investigating the organization, and while it is still ongoing, has discovered that JA is in violation of multiple Washoe County procedures and guidelines. Students and community members have raised concerns in the past, but the organization has failed to take action to increase equitability and eliminate discrimination. As reported in a local news outlet, president Roseanne Smith stated that they would review the documents on their policies and bring the issue up with their board. Nothing has happened since these initial concerns were brought up in 2015. We hope that the Reno/Sparks community will come together in response to these blatantly sexist and homophobic policies and share their disapproval by urging the Junior Assembly to change these policies and open their organization and activities to all students in our community. Halla Mansfield Reno
Bathroom break While visiting the Reno Town Mall yesterday, I ran into a keypad-locked bathroom door. Cute notice said for customers only. I guess a few homeless folks, trying to keep from freezing, must have been
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using the “public” library to try to keep warm (and hopefully do some reading). And, of course, they, too, need to excrete occasional body wastes, yes? I hope that all decent people who shop there loudly let businesses know this is not acceptable or humane. Anyway, I shit in the parking lot behind a big truck and feel much better. Craig Bergland Reno
Another perspective Re “New in town” (Cover story, Dec. 26): Maybe the new arrivals are not looking in places where communities are built, only activities for entertainment? Carol Eastwick Reno
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By matt bieker
Who deserves their own holiday? askeD aT The DownTown reno liBrary, 301 s. cenTer sT.
DaviD BolingBroke History PhD candidate
I think I would go with—this is without thinking about it too much—W. E. B. DuBois. He was an early 20th century civil rights activist. His teachings and what he did at the time were powerful and important.
MakeDa reDfern Poet
We should definitely do Harriet Tubman Day. She’s a great example of what it means to be free. And if you free your mind, you can be free in your body. She worked hard to make sure many people were free.
greg inMan Retiree
Out of the box Reno’s newest “high-end shipping container apartments” now stand completed in midtown as monuments to the private sector’s inability to solve the housing crisis. As reported by the Reno Gazette Journal on Jan. 13, Bryan Raydon, of Marmot Properties—a real estate company that’s been redeveloping aging properties in midtown over the past decade—detailed his five-year slog to turn several standard steel shipping containers into tiny homes at Holcomb Avenue and Moran Street. However, after unexpected delays, permitting difficulties and the financial realities of the housing market, what was originally envisioned as an experimental low-cost solution to skyrocketing rents is now two 800-square foot apartments costing approximately $1,800 per month. In the RGJ article, Raydon sounded disillusioned when answering potential questions about affordability. “They should build it on their own lot if they want affordable housing,” Raydon told the RGJ. “We paid $16,000 a unit in fees. We had to put in concrete sidewalks and parking because the city required us to. The requirements make the city better but they also make it harder to make affordable housing.” Herein lies the inevitable disconnect: Affordable housing won’t come from developers seeking a profit when Reno’s demand for housing so greatly exceeds its supply. Raydon lays the blame for the increased pricing squarely at the government’s feet, and it’s true,
the City has issued fewer building permits in the years following the Great Recession, when the entire state’s housing development sector came to a screeching halt. But the idea of simply turning prefabricated shipping containers into small apartments and plopping them all over town—however well-intentioned—is a gimmick at best, suitable for recreation spaces like downtown’s The Eddy. The appealing interiors of the shipping container duplex are indicative of many developers’ attitudes toward Reno real estate in general: take an inexpensive property and dress it up to sell. Real housing solutions for the city’s struggling inhabitants will come from projects like the Village at Sage Street, which opened in August. While not a public venture, the City “sold” the four acres upon which the Village sits to the Community Foundation of Western Nevada for a total sum of $1. Despite its own developmental delays, the over $8 million price tag was financed by a combination of capital and loans taken out by the Community Foundation, and private donations from members of the community and local construction companies. Managed by the Volunteers of America, the Village at Sage Street provides over 200 modest, serviceable units for a monthly rent of $400. The prefabricated, FEMA-esque dorms are fitting for a housing “crisis,” and are concrete examples of the solutions possible when the human cost is recognized before the financial one. Ω
I was thinking of the actor Kevin Costner. He is a tremendous individual. When we had the oil spill in the gulf, he spent $4 million of his own money to develop a system that would separate the oil from the water.
roselie Me aDor Retiree
I’m going to say Oprah Winfrey. She does a lot of good stuff. I know she does. I’ve read about it. I used to watch her show, and I know on the news sometimes they have the humanitarian things she does—like in Africa, those schools and girls she’s fostered.
Tr ace y fr anklin Customer service representative
Rosa Parks, I think she deserves a holiday. I mean, everyone knows about her, but they don’t celebrate her individually.
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Plan ahead Despite the “march fatigue” you might be feeling after three long Trumpian years, you really should attend the fourth annual Women’s March this Saturday, Jan. 18, which leaves at 11 a.m. from the Reno City Plaza. Organizers wisely changed the path of this year’s March. It now ends indoors at the Reno Events Center where there will be speeches, entertainment, information booths from local organizations, food and—most importantly—heat. Previous marches had a full array of great speakers but few could withstand the winter cold long enough to hear them. The annual March is certainly an opportunity to let our rogue President know he does not have our support as he wages war and damages our country and, indeed, the world. But the Women’s March is also a time to celebrate women and, in particular, Nevada’s women. In that spirit, this week we recognize Nevada’s activist women who have been leading progressive change in our state for decades. And one need look no further
than the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada (PLAN), which just celebrated its 25th anniversary, to find strong and inspiring women dedicated to changing our community. PLAN was initially funded by the legendary Maya Miller, who led an unparalleled life as a peace activist, delivering infant formula and medical supplies in Iraq and traveling to Nicaragua to help prevent U.S. invasion and intervention. She also broke gender barriers, running in the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate in 1974 when there were no women serving in that body. Kit Miller, her daughter and an activist and philanthropist herself, described her mother as “an outside agitator fighting the powers that be.” To many Nevada women, Maya was also a mentor and an inspiration. PLAN has always attracted strong women unafraid of hard work and not all that concerned about getting credit for its success. In the early years, those women included stalwarts like Jan Gilbert, Pilar Weiss, Abby Johnson, Nancy Hart, Janet
Serial, Emma Sepulveda, Yvanna Cancela, Bree Carlson and Rosa Molina. Barbara Buckley wrote and signed PLAN’s articles of incorporation. In more recent years, younger leaders have emerged, like Raquel Cruz-Juarez, Erika Washington, Erika Castro, Amanda Khan, Leslie Turner, Christine Saunders and Beverly Harry. PLAN is led now by Executive Director Laura Martin, who is firmly committed to leadership from communities most affected by poverty, discrimination and injustice. It makes sense that women have played such a dynamic and outsized role during PLAN’s 25 years of organizing for change. PLAN’s mission isn’t driven by a political party or group of insiders but is focused on building a Nevada that values everyone. PLAN has been unafraid to challenge corporate power structures that contribute to income inequality and underfunded social services. PLAN works on community justice concerns, such as ending cash bail and
decriminalizing traffic tickets. They’ve taken on immigration issues, helping to found the Nevada Immigrant Coalition to fight for proactive legislation while stopping anti-immigrant laws. PLAN supports higher wages for workers, reproductive justice and a health care system that doesn’t depend on your job or how much money you have. They are one of the few voices advocating for environmental justice, calling out the mining industry for its rapacious conduct. PLAN advocates for racial and gender justice in all its work, understanding the intersection of misogyny and racism with public policy that doesn’t support women or people of color. Their civic engagement activities are a core element of ensuring an equal partnership in democracy for everyone. The theme of Saturday’s march is “When Women Thrive, We All Thrive.” Women have made the difference at PLAN and at many other organizations in Nevada. The least we can do is show up on Saturday and thank them. Ω
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RAISE YOUR VOICES
This photo taken during the first Reno Women’s March on Jan. 21, 2017—the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration.
Kids between the ages of 4 and 12 have the opportunity to join the Joyful Noise Carson Children’s choir, which kicks off its spring semester on Tuesday, Jan. 21 from 5:15 to 6:15 p.m. at Sierra Place Senior Living—1111 W. College Parkway, Carson City. There is no cost for joining the choir, but guardians are encouraged to join the Carson City Symphony Association to offset costs like supplies, insurance and the instructor’s stipend. An educational program of the Carson City Symphony Association, Joyful Noise Carson Children’s Choir was founded in 2017 by Nancy Jones. This year, it is being led by Michelle Powers. The educational program is geared toward helping kids develop strong singing voices, musical skills and performance experience. The choir will hold a spring concert called “LatinXpressions II” to be played with the Symphony Youth Strings Carson City Symphony on April 23. The choir is supported in part by public funds through a grant from the Nevada Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts and by private donations. For more information and registration forms, contact Michelle Powers at 775-720-1916 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
GOING GREEN According to a press release, Truckee Meadows Community College joined NV Energy’s NV Green Energy Rider program in December of last year. The release stated in part that the program has made it possible for 100 percent “of the energy serviced to students, faculty and staff at TMCC to come from renewable energy sources, such as solar or wind power.” The press release cites TMCC as the first Nevada System of Higher Education institution to achieve this. YeVonne Allen, program director of TMCC’s Equity, Inclusion and Sustainability Office, said the school will continue to work on environmental sustainability and resiliency with its Climate Action Plan strategies and goals. The new energy program joins TMCC’s four solar arrays and two Verkek Electric vehicle charging stations as renewable sources of energy. The school also has 13 water bottle refilling stations which it estimates have, to date, saved over 21,000 single-use items from landfills.
MORE WINTER WEATHER A weather advisory for the region expired at 10 a.m. Tuesday. But, as of press time, a winter storm warning was expected to go into effect on Thursday, Jan. 16, with a stronger storm system expected—one that meteorologists predicted could bring up to two feet of snow in the higher elevations. The weather system for which Tuesday’s advisory was issued brought less than a half of a foot of snow to most area ski resorts, but it also brought dangerously high winds and closed I-580 to high-profile vehicles between Reno and Carson City. According to the National Weather Service, the strongest wind gust recoreded on Tuesday was 137 miles per hour and happened at 3:45 a.m. at Alpine Meadows near Tahoe City.
Keeping stride Reno Women’s March returns for fourth year The fourth Reno Women’s March will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 18. For some participants, it’s been a long three years since Donald Trump took office. Organizers of the event may agree, but they also believe a lot of positive things have happened in the meantime. “One of the things I’m most excited about in the last three-and-a-half years is how people are stepping up to take a role now—and not just in politics, but in the local community,” said organizer Jackie Shelton. “They’re looking to volunteer and to donate money, and they’re understanding that we’re all in this together and that we need to work together to make the world better.” This is part of the reason she and other organizers are taking a different tack with the 2020 event. “That’s one of the things this is about,” Shelton said. “It’s to let people know what they can do—you know, what is within your power to make it
better. It can be very easy to just put your head under the covers and be sad about the state of the world. But there are actual things you can do. … I’ve found, personally—and with a lot of the people I talk to—the more of that you do, the better you feel. And you are making a difference.” This year, instead of marchers gathering on the Reno City Plaza after traveling north from the federal courthouse, they’ll gather and depart from the plaza on a northward march to the Reno Events Center where more than 100 booths will be staffed by nonprofit organizations and political campaigners. “We have nonprofit organizations representing health care, representing the environment, families, women’s issues,” Shelton said. “NAACP and ACLU are both going to be there. People can also register to vote, and they can get caucus information. And then candidates, we have from school
board up to presidential candidates. Most of the major Democratic presidential candidates will be represented.” The march will be preceded by a Native American prayer, and the Jingle Dress Dancers of the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony will lead the march as they did last year and will perform onstage at the events center. Local musical acts will also perform this year, including American folk band Wheatstone Bridge. For Wheatstone Bridge vocalist Jill Marlene—who credits the political protest music of artists like Joan Baez, Judy Collins and Peter, Paul and Mary with her lifelong love of music—it feels like the carrying on of tradition. “I’ve always really cared about using music as a way to convey ideas and help facilitate social change,” she said. “So, for me, this was just the perfect opportunity. It lines up with my core values. As a therapist, most of music is about change and what inhibits change. And so we’ve written a bunch of political songs, and we’re playing our originals for this, too. And we’re going to play a couple of traditional protest songs so that people can sing along with us and join in and kind of raise the consciousness a little bit.” In addition to music, the event will also feature speakers. “We’re going to have speakers and entertainment from, like, 11 o’clock
to 3 o’clock,” Shelton said. “We’ll have said. “It’s just important to understand speakers representing all of these different that. And it’s also, I think, important for issues from voting rights to the environment people to understand that these rights to gun safety. They’ll be speaking as well weren’t given to us. Somebody wasn’t just as candidates. The presidential candidates magnanimous one day and said, ‘Hey, we will all have proxies. We’ve got four for should just let women vote. Why didn’t Congress. … We have [Reno] City Council, we ever think of this before?’ Instead, they Sparks City Council.” really worked to keep us from voting— Since this year’s event will be taking and, even today, it’s a common fight. place at the Reno Events Center, there People get disfranchised and taken will be additional security, and off of voter rolls arbitrarily a lot marchers will be prohibited of times. And it’s to suppress “It can be from bringing in certain the vote, and that’s not very easy to just items, like any sticks OK. That’s not American. attached to their signs, That’s not what we were put your head under water bottles, food and raised as Americans the covers and be sad dogs—except service to believe happens or about the state of the world. animals. (There will, should happen.” however, be a water They are, of course, But there are actual things bottle and sign valet correct about the 19th you can do.” at the entrance.) In Amendment. an effort to focus on When it was ratified on Jackie Shelton diversity and inclusion, Aug. 26, 1920, there were Women’s March Organizer Shelton said, organizers have a fair number of American worked to ensure that volunteer women whose status wasn’t marshals and hired security for the really changed. Aside from the event includes people of different genders women who lived in states where voting and races. There will also be a gender-neutral rights had been granted them prior to ratifibathroom designated at the events center. cation of the federal amendment, there were Native Americans and Asian immigrants— men and women—who were denied citizenSUFFRAGE CELEBRATION ship. In the South, black people continued As 2020 marks the 100th anniversary of to be subject to voter-suppression laws and the ratification of the 19th Amendment, the vigilante tactics. march will also be part celebration of the Nonetheless, the amendment did allow occasion and will feature additional women for the registration of millions of new speakers giving spoken word performances. woman voters. The League of Women Voters “We’ll have eight to 10 women who are was borne of the National American Woman each speaking,” Shelton said. “Some are Suffrage Association. And women voters’ doing a Chautauqua-style, like, representing perspectives began influencing the national the women’s suffrage movement. We have agenda on everything from labor reform to one who’s a veteran, so she’s talking about child welfare. women in the military; one who’s an athlete, And, of course, ratification of the 19th so she’s talking about sports before Title IX. Amendment eventually led to the present era We have a transgender woman represented, a in which Nevada’s Legislature became the refugee and then a young woman [speaking first in the nation with a female majority. It’s as a future voter].” one with a long list of legislative successes For Shelton and fellow organizer Daela under its belt from the 2019 session, to Gibson, who works as director of public include a new gun background check law, affairs for Planned Parenthood Marmonte, new renewable energy requirements, a the hope is that the march will also serve as minimum wage increase, protections for a chance to remind people that ratification abortion, incorporation into state law of of the 19th Amendment was not a magic provisions of the Affordable Care Act, voter bullet to solve women’s inequality—or even rights protections and collective bargaining suffrage for all women. for state workers. “I’ve been a big fan of diversity That’s all in addition to new laws that forever, but I’m constantly reminded add permanent funding for rape kit testwhy it’s important … like the 19th ing at the state level, increase the state’s Amendment,” Shelton said. “You know, I domestic violence penalties and remove the said that to somebody. I said, ‘Yeah, the requirement for a doctor to ask a woman if 19th Amendment gave women the right she’s married before she’s given access to to vote.’ And I had an African American an abortion. Ω woman say to me, ‘Well, white women.’ And I went, ‘Oh, right. Right.’” “While the 19th Amendment helped secure the vote for disenfranchised white Learn more about the 2020 Reno Women’s March by visiting women, it didn’t help everybody,” Gibson womensmarchreno.org.
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Clay station Sinking homes in South Reno? Some South Reno residents find themselves upwards of $10,000 in the hole to fix what looks like sinking homes—but is actually a very expensive geology lesson. South Reno housing developments sit on what was once irrigated pasture land that would see annual flooding in the spring. Over 150 years, that deposited massive amounts of expansive clay and fine silt onto the valley floor. This clay swells when soaked with water and shrinks in hotter, drier seasons. The result? Seriously wonky floors and uneven furniture that gives the appearance of a sinking house—and the reality of a reduced value. I spoke with an employee of a local construction and repair company, who requested anonymity, but has worked extensively with affected homeowners in Damonte Ranch, Double Diamond, Southeast Meadows and the general Southwest Reno area. He said foundational disfigurement tends to appear three to seven years after a resident moves in, and because there are so many variables in housing development, it may be a problem without any real solution. In any new development, according to the construction source: “You have a lot of people seeing one piece of the problem. The hydrologist looks at water rights. The engineer looks at drainage. It’s very hard to step back and see the whole picture.” Because the dirt is moved in large volumes and developmental paces vary, neighborhoods are affected in pockets—three homes could need repair on one street while the remaining homes might be fine. The source explained that the soils are very difficult to identify during construction process, because “when a bulldozer is moving 5,000 yards of dirt, it’s going to mix with other dirt.” Angela Fuss, a planning Manager with the city’s Community Development Department, said before any new housing is approved, “contractors must submit plans, which include things like sewer design, water design, structural designs, soil testing, and so on,” —but clarified that the city itself does not run the tests
by JAne K. CAllAhAn
Are homes in south Reno really sinking, or are homeowners there getting a very expensive geology lesson?
to see if the submitted data is accurate. However, she stressed, “All of the engineers involved in development have a responsibility, and are putting their legal license on the line when they stamp those plans.” The other sticking point is that insurance companies will not cover this damage. Homeowners’ insurance policies are event-driven (e.g. an earthquake) and exclude subsidence (natural ground movement). Jason W. Peak, an attorney with Laxalt & Nomura who has represented homeowners, general contractors and subcontractors, says both homeowners and builders tend to have a subsidence exclusion clause in their insurance policy—and many don’t even know it. Peak added that, in his experience, soil engineers are rarely at fault. In fact, sometimes the homeowners are to blame. “Engineers and builders can do everything they should have done … and then a homeowner will landscape the backyard and over-water planters next to their house, and all that goes underneath the foundation,” he said. Additionally, these foundational disfigurements can be seen as a mere cosmetic problem from a legal standpoint—though the sources said they have seen some safety issues, like doors and windows that can’t open. Outside of preventative landscaping choices, “There’s no way for homebuyers to tell [if their home is built on this clay] outside of a really good home inspection,” said the anonymous source. But that tactic excludes buyers who snap up foreclosed houses, which are purchased as-is, without structural disclosures. (Even in scenarios where full disclosure is mandated, that’s only if there’s a known problem.) While some homeowners swallow the cost as a casualty of buying a home, others are angry and are taking developers to district court—resulting in suits that can go on for years. “In these types of lawsuits, everything is examined,” Fuss said. “Did they anticipate those clays would expand? Was there any proposal to mitigate the concerns? There’s a wide swathe of things that could cause homes to have these problems.” Peak said builders usually put warnings in an informational packet given to buyers, but that doesn’t mean they’ll read it. “They bought the house for the schools, not the soil they’re on.” Ω
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by Jeri Davis
ustice is supposed to be blind. Often, though, it appears mostly to be slow. After spending 35 years behind bars for a murder of which she was later exonerated, Cathy Woods filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the City of Reno, Washoe County, and the individual law enforcement officers and prosecutor whose work put her behind bars. That was nearly four years ago, and—while Washoe County has settled with Woods on behalf of itself and the prosecutor—the case against the other defendants has yet to go to trial. It is, in fact, still in its first stage—discovery—which is set to finish on Feb. 1. To understand what happened to Woods and how it led to her case against the people and government entities that put her in prison, one must go back nearly 44 years to Feb. 24, 1976.
and opened their garage that Michelle’s body was found—her hands bound behind her back and her throat slit. A cigarette butt was collected from the scene, and shoe prints in the dirt floor of the garage—about a men’s size 9 or 9.5—were documented in addition to Mitchell’s. Barbara Mitchell told the Sagebrush that Michelle had a fear of things like spiders and sheds. “How could she have been taken into that old garage without a fight?” she asked. In the weeks following the murder, police received information and tips from witnesses in the area. Two of these witnesses told police that Mitchell was startled by a man who put his arms around her as she was walking back to her car. Others reported that they’d seen a man running away from the scene of the crime near the time it was believed to have occurred. Fraternity brothers at the Sigma Alpha Epsilon frat house on Evans Avenue told the police they’d seen a man walking away from the neighborhood in a hurry. And another witness who’d driven through the area told them she’d almost hit a man who ran in front of her car near the scene. She also told the police that the man appeared to have blood on him and had held one of his hands at his side, potentially under this jacket, as he ran. The police, it seemed, were looking for a male killer. They’d continue, without success, until the case went cold.
The murder of Michelle Mitchell
The prosecution of Cathy Woods
long J sentence After 35 years behind bars, Cathy Woods awaits another day in court
Cathy Woods was convicted of Michelle Mitchell’s murder in 1980.
Michelle Mitchell, a 19-year-old nursing student at the University of Nevada, Reno, was murdered on the evening of Feb. 24, 1976. It’s a story that late RN&R News Editor Dennis Myers followed closely, first as a student journalist for the University of Nevada, Reno’s Sagebrush newspaper and later as a professional. According to Myers’ past reporting, Mitchell was driving past the campus on Ninth Street. She was taking a container of orange juice to her diabetic father at the Sterling Village Bowling Lanes at Valley Road and Denslowe Drive—but her car broke down as she was passing the agriculture college. Mitchell either pushed or coasted her Volkswagen into a parking lot and called her mother from a phone booth at the college for a ride. But when Barbara Mitchell arrived at the university, her daughter was nowhere to be found. Soon Barbara, the police and Michelle’s father, Edwin, who brought along a Labrador to help, began searching for Michelle. Several times they passed by a garage. However, it was not until the residents of the property, an elderly couple, came home late that evening
Cathy Woods was living in Reno when Mitchell was murdered but wouldn’t be for much longer. Woods had moved to Reno in 1969. At the time of Mitchell’s murder, she was a manager at a topless bar in downtown Reno—this despite the fact that she was a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic with only a sixth grade education. According to court documents, the condition had set in early. The first time Woods was hospitalized for mental health reasons was when she was only 12 years old. Woods left Reno around a year after Mitchell was murdered. She moved to Shreveport, Louisiana, to be closer to her family. But once there, her mental illness became worse. Woods was involuntarily committed to the Central Louisiana State Hospital in October, 1978, and stayed there through December. Just months later, in February, 1979, she was involuntarily committed once again—this time to the Louisiana State University Medical Center. It had been three years since Mitchell’s murder. In March of ’79, Woods became a suspect in Mitchell’s
The long senTenCe continued on page 12
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The Long senTence continued from page 11 murder when she told Carol Sherman, a counselor at LSU, about the three-year-old cold case, suggesting that she’d killed Mitchell. Court records submitted by Woods’ attorneys indicate that she also made claims around that time of being an FBI agent and that she believed her mother, whom she’d moved to Louisiana to be near, was poisoning her. Nonetheless, Sherman decided to contact the Shreveport police— who, in turn, contacted the Reno Police Department. After interviewing Sherman, Shreveport police detective Donald Ashley and his partner, detective Clarence Lewis, contacted the RPD, which sent then lieutenant Lawrence Dennison to Louisiana to follow up on this ostensible new lead in the cold case. Woods was interrogated at the LSU Hospital by Ashley and Dennison on March 7, 1979. On March 8, two additional men from Nevada—then Washoe County district attorney Calvin Dunlap and RPD detective
This was the first time Woods was convicted of Mitchell’s murder. Her case was actually retried in 1985 after the Nevada Supreme Court overturned her conviction based on testimony that was not allowed by the court at her first trial—testimony that was entwined in a separate, lesser publicized, murder that happened only days before Mitchell’s.
The murder of Peggy Davis
A woman named Peggy Davis was murdered sometime between Feb. 19 or 20, 1976. Police found her body in her apartment on Ralston Street after receiving a call asking them to check the property. Davis and one of the two women convicted of killing her—Raye Wood—had at one time both worked as topless dancers at the Lucky Lady Club, 120 E. Second St., a Evans Avenue club owned by Davis’ former lover Morey Kaplan. Wood and her accomplice in the killMichelle’s car ing—a woman named y lle Dirt a Marjorie Carter— Gate Dirt parking lot were convicted of 3-foot fence first-degree and second-degree murder, respectively. Muder scene A map shows where Investigations and Garage at Mitchell’s body was e s Hou 333 E. 9th st. court proceedings found near campus. revealed the pair had bludgeoned and stabbed Davis to death John Kimpton—arrived in Shreveport to as a part of a contract killing sponsored by interrogate Woods again and to obtain a Kaplan, who was the beneficiary of Davis’ warrant to search her mother’s home for a life insurance policy. murder weapon. Raye Wood’s boyfriend, Tony Lima, The search turned up nothing, and was charged and convicted as an accessory Woods’ interrogations over the course to the murder, having helped Raye Wood of the two days were not recorded. Nor dispose of the murder weapons. did she sign or initial the confession But according to the Nevada Supreme written up by the officers. Yet this was Court’s opinion issued when Woods’ the primary piece of evidence that was re-trial for Mitchell’s murder was ordered, used to convict Woods of first-degree there may have been evidence linking Lima murder in 1980. The confession used in to Mitchell’s murder, too. her trial stated that Woods had offered to According to the court, the theory of help Mitchell fix her car, had taken her Woods’ defense attorney at her first trial into the garage where her body was found was that her “confession was the product on the pretext of getting some tools, had of her mental illness” and Mitchell had made a sexual proposal to her, and when actually been killed by Lima. And there rebuffed, had slit her throat. Woods was was someone ready to testify to having sentenced to life in prison without the information to corroborate the theory. possibility of parole. (alley)
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Miichelle Mitchell was murdered in February of 1976.
The Nevada Sagebrush covered
According to the court’s the murder of decision ordering the 1985 Michelle Mitchell. retrial, “Raye Wood’s former jailmate, Kathy Murnighan, was ready to testify that Raye Wood had told her that she and Lima had discussed killing a woman to cover up the Davis killing by making it appear as though both murders were the work of a homicidal maniac. One night, Lima told Raye Wood that he had found a girl whose car had broken down and had slashed her throat. Raye Wood and Lima together disposed of the murder weapon.” Lima was, in fact, called during the offer of proof at Woods’ first trial and denied having killed Mitchell. Raye Wood invoked her fifth amendment privilege against self-incrimination and refused to testify unless she was granted immunity. She was ruled unavailable by the state, which denied her immunity. At this point, Woods’ defense counsel sought to introduce Murnighan’s testimony, but the court denied it—claiming it was not sufficiently trustworthy. Had that testimony been heard by jurors in Cathy Woods’ initial case, they would have learned the following, according to the Nevada Supreme Court document: “A maroon Monte Carlo was seen near the scene of the crime on the night of the murder. Lima traded in his car, a maroon Monte Carlo, soon after Mitchell was killed. A footprint in the garage matched Lima’s shoe size. Murnighan said that Lima lost something in the garage; a blue
cigarette lighter was found on the scene. Most strikingly, Murnighan stated that Lima had said that Mitchell was having her menstrual period when he killed her. Lima was trying to excuse himself for not having stabbed Mitchell in the vagina as Davis had been stabbed, because Raye Wood berated him for not having killed Mitchell the same way that Davis had been killed. Mitchell’s autopsy had disclosed that she had been having her menstrual period prior to her death. This fact was not mentioned in any of the numerous news accounts of the crime, and the State has been unable to proffer an alternative explanation of how Murnighan could have learned of it.” However, even with this information on the table—and no physical evidence to link Woods to the scene—she was re-convicted of Mitchell’s murder in 1985 and again sentenced to life without parole. She would spend another 30 years behind bars.
Liberty In 2013, one of Woods’ fellow inmates helped her send a letter to the Rocky Mountain Innocence Project requesting DNA testing on the cigarette butt that had been found at the scene of Mitchell’s murder. And, in the fall of 2013, the DNA tests failed to link Woods to the murder—instead identifying a male DNA profile. This was sent to the FBI’s national DNA database, but no matches were found until July 2014 when Reno authorities were notified that an uploaded DNA profile—belonging to a man named Rodney Halbower—was matched to the DNA found on the cigarette butt. Halbower had been arrested for raping a Reno blackjack dealer in November 1975. He was out on bail but appeared in court in Reno on his pending case on Feb. 23, 1976—the day before Mitchell’s murder. Halbower was convicted of the 1975 rape but—in 1986—escaped prison in
Nevada and made his way to Oregon, where he attacked and stabbed a woman in a parking lot. He was returned to Nevada to serve the rest of his sentence before being paroled and sent back to Oregon to begin serving his life sentence there for the attack he committed as an escapee. When he was moved to Oregon, he was required to give
the sample of his DNA that authorities would later say links him to Mitchell’s murder—a finding the FBI disclosed in September of 2014. Halbower’s DNA not only matched that found at the scene of Mitchell’s murder but also several others that had occurred in California around the same time. As a result, Woods was released from prison on bond on Sept. 11, 2014. The prosecution dismissed the charges against her on March 6, 2015. A year and a few months later, she filed her federal civil rights lawsuit alleging violations of her Fourth, Fifth and 14th Amendment rights against those who’d put her in jail. The nearly four-year-old lawsuit may finally go to trial this year.
And justice? “We don’t have a trial date set yet,” said Elizabeth Wang, one of Woods’ attorneys, in a recent interview. “In the fall of last year … we settled with Washoe County and the former prosecuDNA evidence has tor, Calvin Dunlap. And we are linked Michelle continuing to proceed against the Mitchell’s murder to Rodney Halbower. City of Reno and the former Reno police officer who was involved in her interrogation, Lawrence
Dennison, and two former Shreveport police officer, Donald Ashley and Clarence Lewis.” Woods’ suit alleges that the police officers, whose legal representatives declined or did not respond to interview requests for this article, fabricated her confession. And her attorneys feel confident they’ll be able to prove it to a jury. “I think what’s important to know is that whatever the record was back in the ’80s and at her first and her second trials, it’s not the record today,” said Wang. “What the record shows is that her confession was completely fabricated. And the detective [Dennison] claimed in his deposition that he didn’t even remember any of it. He claimed not to remember going to Shreveport. I mean, I’m sure he’s only gone to Shreveport once in his entire life to interrogate a severely mentally ill person in a psychiatric unit, but he claimed … not to remember any of it. He claimed not to remember going to Shreveport. He claimed not remember anything about her interrogation. So we’ll see what a jury thinks about that testimony.” With a Feb. 1 deadline for the discovery phase and the opportunity for the defense
to file for rejudgements on certain pieces of evidence, it will likely be at least autumn before a jury has the opportunity to deliberate on the facts of the case. In the meantime, Woods’ legal team will remain busy. They’re preparing to represent her in a second lawsuit, this one against the State of Nevada, in which Woods will be the first person to sue under a new state law that would allow people released from wrongful imprisonment to receive a certificate of innocence, have their conviction records sealed and receive monetary compensation. Those who spent more than 20 years in prison could receive $100,000 per year every year they spent behind bars. For Woods, that could mean up to $3.5 million dollars. Woods’ attorneys filed her complaint against the state in December. According to Wang, the state’s response is expected sometime in late January. But, depending on the state’s appetite to settle the matter or allow it to proceed to trial, it could be quite some time before the longest wrongfully imprisoned woman in this nation’s history sees the conclusion of her quest for justice and compensation. Ω
01.16.20 | RN&R | 13
From tV to 3-D
Down in an office complex on Lakeside Drive is the headquarters of Healing HealthCare Systems. They make videos combining ambient music with tranquil, beautiful landscapes. It’s called the Continuous Ambient Relaxation Environment (C.A.R.E) Channel, and it plays 24 hours a day on the televisions at hospitals, urgent cares, specialty units, waiting rooms—pretty much any place a patient might be. The company says they’re available in more than 1,000 health care facilities around the world. If you’ve ever been to the Peppermill, it’s kind of like the nature videos playing on those massive screens everywhere.
g n i
A Reno company is developing Virtual Reality technology to help patients heal by Luka Starmer
For more information, visit www.healinghealth.com.
r u t ic of
It might sound like the beginning of an episode of Black Mirror, but the intersection of health care and virtual reality is happening right now in Reno.
he 2020s are already like a sci-fi movie. Weaponized drones are out there inciting international conflicts, and I’m here politely asking the Google robot to turn down the Spotify so I can Facetime my sister while cooking a whole chicken in 30 minutes in the instant pot. The breadth of technology ought not to surprise anyone at this point. So get this: the ’20s is the decade when, if you end up in the hospital for whatever reason, it’s possible a nurse will offer you a virtual reality (VR) headset as part of your patient care services. You pull some lightweight goggles over your face, shutting out the world of fluorescent lights and incessant beeping, and suddenly you’re lounging in the serenity of a sunny beach—the gentle din of ocean waves in your ears. I’ll leave it up to you to dream of whatever other fanciful virtual escape you’d prefer to take; I’m sure it has already been developed.
health “It’s therapeutic content meant to calm people down, reduce anxiety and offset the amount of pain medication people use,” said Ford Corl, creative director of the C.A.R.E. Channel. “It’s a good way to fill the room with positive vibes when hospital rooms can be negative, sterile places.” Corl and his team travel to remote places to capture the videos on ultra high-definition cameras. They film everything from mountains and oceans to waterfalls and wildlife, each environment edited together to mesmerize patients into peaceful bliss. It occurred to Corl that the future of this type of content might be in VR. He said a few years ago he started noticing companies like Samsung and Nokia developing virtual reality platforms, and he realized it was time to begin experimenting in that medium. Fast forward to today, Healing HealthCare Systems now offers a product called C.A.R.E. VRx, their virtual reality headset and application that immerses patients inside of those signature C.A.R.E. Channel environments as if they were really there, and not stuck in their hospital bed. Virtual Reality comes in different forms. One form is graphically developed 3-D worlds—something like a video game. These experiences are even designed using the same software as video games. I don’t know if you’ve played video games lately, but they’re incredibly lifelike. When you see this stuff in a headset, it can seem as good as real. You can squat down and
look under things. You can pick things up. In some applications, you can even hang out with other people in their own VR headsets from all over the world. You’re interacting with the avatar forms of these people, of course, and those avatars can range from anime cartoons to realistic humanoids. Have you read Ready Player One (or seen the movie)? A lot of the technology in that story has arrived already. With all of that said, none of that is what C.A.R.E Channel VR is like. They’re creating a type of VR immersive experience called 360 video. It’s exactly what it sounds like, a video that spans 360 degrees around you. It captures environments as they are, which is a big deal when the environments are beautiful locations one might never see in a lifetime. Their VR content is categorized—mountains or waterfalls, for example. In the course of the experience, the video passes through a number of different locations. The fidelity of these videos is extremely high—the details extremely clear. The world appears as if you were right in that spot. However, unlike 3-D video games, you can’t go exploring the environment around you. You can’t pick things up. There are no levels to win or achievements to unlock. Arguably, that’s the point. Patients are in these experiences to escape distracting stimuli. The entire brand of the C.A.R.E Channel is based around serene healing environments. They believe in their philosophies enough to qualify them on their website with a selection of
SPONSORED CONTENT self-published blogs, white papers and articles written by Healing HealthCare Systems President and CEO Susan E. Mazer, Ph.D. Her March 22, 2019 blog is titled “Virtual Reality for Non-Pharmaceutical Pain Management.”
hospital staff using VR as a way to chill out and escape during their breaktimes. According to Renown Health’s Director of Service Excellence Amber Maraccini, Ph.D, Renown has been a client of the C.A.R.E. Channel for roughly three years. The video is available in all patient rooms, outpaGETTING INTO HOSPITALS service tient offices and elsewhere. However, Renown Virtual reality being the C.A.R.E. Channel’s isn’t using their Virtual Reality service. newest product, now it’s their job to sell it to “I think we’re lightyears from [VR being their portfolio of existing and future health offered to] every patient in every bed in the care facilities. But getting hospitals to buy into hospitals,” said Maraccini. She said that VR isn’t easy. they’re not opposed to it, however. “We’re “I think hospitals are slow to adapt to new always looking to explore new opportunities technology and rightfully so,” said James and best practices. Knowing the research to Vinall, Director of Sales at the C.A.R.E. support VR, I think there’s a lot of applications Channel. “They want to make sure [VR is] for health care we haven’t yet tapped into.” evidence-based.” There’s peer-reviewed She said implementation might look like research on the topic, but the jury is still out on slowly introducing VR for dedicated programs embracing widespread VR. and dedicated spaces in the hospitals. Once a hospital buys the C.A.R.E. Channel Meanwhile at Reno’s VA Sierra Nevada VRx subscription, then they have to decide Health Care System on Kirman Avenue, how they want to roll out their offering for virtual reality is already being incorporated VR. For example, would it be available to into a few different programs, some that are all patients, or only available in the oncology being recognized by the National Veterans unit? There are other concerns about managing Affairs department. infection control if multiple patients use the According to Colin McNerney, health same VR headset. Best practices for VR in systems specialist with the Reno VA, they health care are new and are being developed initially made VR available in their recreation on an ongoing basis. The C.A.R.E. Channel therapy department. Patients could explore staff say they consult on these best practices. different experiences as a way of recreation Vinall said that the technology is still and disctraction. McNerney said he’s never in a trial phase. They’re betting on a shift heard of the C.A.R.E. Channel. Instead, to an industry-wide adoption of virtual the VA offers consumer platforms for their reality. It may require looking at how VR Veterans to experience. may help more people than just hospital McNerney also explained that the VA patients. uses VR for pain management for their “We’ve been getting a lot chronic pain and hospice patients. of interest from nurses “We’re using VR as a ther“It’s and from hospital staff apy model with vital sign therapeutic using a product like capture and data capture this,” said Corl. “A content meant to to take the place of lot of hospitals are regularly schedule calm people down, trying to mitigate opioid prescription,” reduce anxiety and nurse burn-out he said. “The goal because of the long offset the amount of pain is to implement VR hours and weird instead of the patient medication people use.” schedules.” Corl popping a pill.” □ Ford Corl shared anecdotes of Creative Director, C.A.R.E. VRx & C.A.R.E. Channel Producer Healing HealthCare Systems
Ford Corl creates new visuals for his C.A.R.E Channel.
“Green in” the New year
Ready to make a difference this new year? Make an impact every day by incorporating some green habits into your daily life. Start by refusing singleuse plastics. Unfortunately, single-use plastics are not recyclable, do not decompose, and, thus, wreak havoc on our environment. Instead of taking that plastic utensil for your take-out, use a fork you have at home or the office. Out and about often? Buy reusable travel cutlery. Another huge way you can reduce your plastic waste is to ditch disposables. Revert to products like cloth napkins, handkerchiefs, and reusable razors. More often than not, disposables were based on items that already exist. Reusable items will be worth the cost in the long run due to the quality and longevity of the product. Another common, and shocking, item Americans throw away is food. Food is the #1 material Americans throw away. However, there are simple ways to combat this issue: first off, buy only what you need. This rule of thumb will not only cut back on your food waste, but it will also save you money. Also, be a leftover lover! When you waste food, you are wasting resources. For example, when you throw away a ⅓ pound burger, that is equivalent to pouring 660 gallons of water down the drain. Some foods and diets are much more sustainable
than others, like the plant-based diet. This year, try to focus your meals around plant-based foods; if you’re a meat-lover and can’t give it up, try out “Meatless Mondays,” a growing trend in which consumers can cut back on meat but still enjoy it. Also, be sure to support your neighborhood farmers and buy local and organic foods. Pass on “Fast fashion.” This is fashion known to be cheap, therefore poorly made. It is also known to have a high turnover rate, leaving new clothing on shelves for further consumption. Because of their cheap materials, fast fashion textiles do not last, and it forces consumers to throw them out and continue to support the industry. Fast fashion is addictive and often a necessity because it is so cheap; however, there are other ways to get the clothing and textiles you need while being sustainable and saving your money. First, be thrifty - buy from a local thrift shop. Second, give your ratty textiles a second life - if you have articles of clothing that are too ratty to donate, you can always cut up the materials and use them as cleaning rags. There are also clothing stores, such as H&M, that take textiles and well-used garments to create more clothing or rags. If your clothes only have a few wears and tears, you can always re-dye them or refurbish them. Remove the stress of waste from your life by following these tips. Take it slow and incorporate a new habit every week, or dive headfirst and become a zero-waste master. “It’s not about a handful of people doing it perfectly, but a million people doing it imperfectly.”
LEaRN mORE by viSiTiNg www.kTmb.ORg 01.16.20
by JEssica santina
Local actor John Wade plans to present “How to Burlesque” at Take Five 2020.
Big to-do Take Five 2020 Think of something you do well—perhaps you have a great smoothie recipe or you know the best way to wrap a present. Do you think you could give a five-minute presentation to strangers about it? And I mean exactly five minutes. That’s the idea behind Take Five 2020, two nights of how-to presentations by local artists, returning this weekend at Brüka Theatre. As Producing Artistic Director Mary Bennett explains, credit for the idea belongs to Elizabeth Tenney, who first conceived the series of speed lectures in Mammoth, California, as a way to showcase the smart, talented, interesting people living there. “The idea behind it is to gather people from the community to explain, in a how-to fashion, things they do that people would be interested to know about,” Bennett said, adding that this is its second installment in Reno. Brüka’s version takes a more art-focused approach—although its definition of art is broad. The 30 unique presenters’ (15 per night) subject matter runs the gamut from practical (such as Kelsey Sweet’s “How to Model for Art” and Jon Potter’s “How to Tattoo”) to ethereal (as in Janice Oberding’s “How to Speak to the Dead” and Reverend Matthew Fisher’s “How to Find Nirvana”). Take Five 2017, Brüka’s first installment, was successful in several ways, Bennett said. “Both nights, the seats were filled, but we also created new relationships with people in the community. And when you ask someone to do something they do well in five minutes, the results are pretty amazing.” She points to 2020 presentations such as Britton Griffith Douglass’ “The Art of the Campaign” or Jesse James Ziegler’s “How 16
to Create a Poem” as examples of how boiling down a person’s skill into an effective five-minute presentation is, in itself, an art. Some presenters use slideshows and scripts; others improvise. Prepare for audience involvement. And make no mistake, when five minutes are up, that’s it. Grant Denton, the creator of the Karma Boxes around Reno and Carson City filled with food and hygiene supplies for those experiencing homelessness, will share how to take the same premise that started that project—connectedness and group engagement in acts of kindness—and use it to create conscious karma in your own life. “There are so many things happening in this show, there’s no chance you won’t have a good experience,” he said. John Wade, a local actor, dancer and frequent Brüka performer, will present “How to Burlesque.” “I’m going to present the difference between strip tease, stripping and burlesque, kind of a clarification for folks who’ve never thought about it or understood there was a difference,” Wade said. “You’ll get a quick education on a lot of things you never knew you needed to know.” Bennett said that because each night’s show is unique, there’s a special two-night ticket price to encourage return visits. “We wanted to usher in 2020 with really conscious thought and honoring people in our community who sometimes are on the sidelines, who don’t usually get notoriety or praise,” Bennett said. “Last time, several artists told us, ‘Wow, I never realized what that person does.’ So now, not only do they feel validated about their own work, but they’re more excited about the community they’re living in.” Ω
take Five 2020: a Brüka theatre Fundraiser and community Bridge will be at Brüka theatre, 99 n. Virginia st., on Jan. 17 and 18 at 7 p.m. Part i or Part ii: $25; Parts i and ii: $40. For more information, visit www.bruka.org.
BY BOB GRIMM
b g ri m m @ne w s re v i e w . c o m
“So, underwater, can anyone hear you scream?”
Deep end Kristen Stewart goes into badass movie star mode in Underwater, a long delayed and surprisingly decent deep-sea horror/thriller from director William Eubank. While it stands to be the second big-budget box office disaster in a row for Stewart after Charlie’s Angels, it deserves a better fate. The movie is actually pretty good. The film doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel or work any miracles. It’s successful in a very basic way in that it engages from beginning to end, with an occasional effective scare, a constant sense of dread and high-pressure tension. Stewart stars as Norah, an underwater engineer on a drilling rig in the middle of the Mariana Trench. We first see her brushing her teeth as the lights around her flicker, accompanied by some dull thuds. She glances around, plays a little with a spider in the sink, and she isn’t too concerned. Then, “boom!,” her section of the rig implodes, blasting water all around her as she and another crew member narrowly escape to a temporary safe place. And by temporary, I mean safe for the next 30 seconds or so. Norah makes her way through the quickly mounting disaster, meeting up with other crew members (including T. J. Miller along for comic relief in a movie made well before personal controversies rendered him a casting no-no). The vessel’s captain (a strong Vincent Cassel) hatches a plan involving big diving suits and walking on the ocean floor toward a safer zone. The group reluctantly goes along. It’s not an earthquake or volcanic eruption that has caused their work home to be compromised. Sea creatures of no explained origin, some the size of the chest burster in Alien, some of more Godzilla-type proportions, are menacing the rig and occasionally dining on humans. Jaws style, the creatures are slowly but surely introduced, until a finale that is monster-full. Eubank stocks his cast with talent (which also includes Jessica Henwick of Game of Thrones and
John Gallagher, Jr.), a cast that can say a lot in just the way they look, so long periods of exposition aren’t needed for us to immediately care about them. The movie never lets up, and while it doesn’t possess a remarkable screenplay or anything resembling emotional depth, the action is fierce and the characters still register. In fact, had the screenplay provided one more solid, apocalyptic twist or shift, this film could’ve qualified as something very good rather than just merely good. There were moments when I thought Eubank might offer up some sort of Twilight Zone shocker but, alas, the movie is just about people running away from sea monsters. The monsters themselves are mostly seen through dark, murky water. Normally, obscuring special effects and not allowing full sight of a monster would infuriate me, but it works here, much in the same way it did with the cave dwellers in The Descent. Because we witness much of the action as if we were part of the escaping crew, we often see the monsters lit by flashlights or through suit visors. It works, for the most part. Nuts to the studio—Fox, owned by Disney—who decided to make this PG-13. It needed to be an R. Stewart provides the mayhem with a nice center of gravity, creating a character who is clearly scared shitless yet realistically under control. She shaved her head for the role, but Norah would seem to have that haircut because it makes more sense given the living conditions rather than it being an attempt to look tough. So, it’s January, which usually sees the release of movies studios have zero faith in (along with awards contenders getting their wide releases after limited runs, like 1917 and Just Mercy). Underwater definitely fits the bill as a long delayed, question mark of a movie. Fortunately for genre fans, it doesn’t suck like a typical January dumping-ground movie. □
A couple of British World War I soldiers stationed in France have themselves a harrowing time in 1917, a war action/drama from Director Sam Mendes that amounts to one of 2019’s greatest technological achievements in cinema. It’s also one of the past year’s best movies. Mendes, along with his special effects team, editing crew and legendary cinematographer Roger Deakins (an Oscar winner for Blade Runner 2049), designed the film to look like one continuous “real time” shot. They do a seamless job, to the point where you stop looking for the places where edits might be happening and you just take the whole thing in. The story never suffers in favor of the filmmaking stunt. Lance Corporals Schofield and Blake (George MacKay and Dean-Charles Chapman) are seen napping at the beginning of the movie. Blake is ordered to wake up and report to command and takes Schofield along with him. The two pals figure they have some sort of nothing assignment coming their way involving food or mail delivery. Not long after, in a plot that owes a little to Saving Private Ryan, Schofield and Blake get their unusual assignment: go beyond a recently abandoned German front line and reach the next British battalion before they mistakenly advance into a trap set by the enemy. It’s up to them to save the lives of 1,600 soldiers, one of them being Blake’s older brother. The movie is set in motion and never really stops. Schofield and Blake venture out into a body-riddled, fly-infested battlefield with very little time to spare. Deakins’ camera follows them as if you were a third party along for the mission. This results in a completely immersive experience.
Charlize Theron is uncanny as Megyn Kelly in this hit-and-miss take on the sexual harassment scandals that plagued Fox News thanks to the deplorable Roger Ailes, played here by John Lithgow under lots of makeup. The movie is propped up by terrific work from Theron, Nicole Kidman as Gretchen Carlson, and Margot Robbie as a composite character representing the many women who were assaulted by the likes of Ailes and Bill O’Reilly. Director Jay Roach is all over the place with his tone, with the film veering back and forth between dark comedy and serious drama. It never finds the balance that happens in great films, but it is often a good one, especially thanks to Theron, who is amazing in every second she spends on screen (and the makeup work is Oscar-worthy as well). Roach blows it with his portrayals of Bill O’Reilly (Kevin Dorff) and Rudy Giuliani (Richard Kind), who come off as bad impersonations rather than true characters. What should’ve been an important film comes off as partial failure.
So, when this thing started, I was actually liking it a bit. It looked weird as hell, and I could tell the cast was singing live on set, which I admire. But, after about five minutes, a malaise sinks in that doesn’t lift. That malaise is due mainly to the fact that this musical sucks to begin with. No amount of CGI wizardry—which, sadly, this film doesn’t have—can save this blight on humanity. The music is god awful, excepting for a brief interlude where something resembling a beautiful melody sticks out like a sore thumb. That’s “Beautiful Ghosts,” a song co-written by Taylor Swift that is actually good. They should’ve let Swift rewrite the whole damn thing. She actually shows up for a brief stretch toward the end of the movie, a life preserver in a sea of shit that, unfortunately, is snatched away before you can really grab onto it. Judi Dench stars as the apparent overseer of some sort of America’s Got Talent for felines. (I really have no idea what was going on in this movie.) The weirdness of the visuals, combined with the slog pacing and shitty music, will have you thinking you have a bad case of cat scratch fever. I saw the origi-
nal version. Apparently there’s a new version out there with some fixed visuals. Readers, I love you, but there is no fucking way I am subjecting myself to this a second time.
Michael B. Jordan stars as civil rights attorney Bryan Stevenson, a real-life attorney who has dedicated his life to freeing wrongly convicted death row inmates. Destin Daniel Cretton’s film focuses primarily on the case of Walter McMillian (Jamie Foxx), a man sentenced to death for the murder of a girl, even though evidence showed him with friends and family at the time of the killing. What happened to McMillian is depicted competently in the movie, as are some other cases and Stevenson’s struggles to bring injustices into the light. Jordan and Foxx are very good, as are a supporting cast of Brie Larson, Tim Blake Nelson and O’Shea Jackson, Jr. The film is well done, but perhaps a little too routine for stretches. Still, it’s a showcase for fine acting, especially by Jordan and Foxx. It’ll also get you thinking on the downfalls of the death penalty, and the kinds of horrors men like McMillian went through.
This is the umpteenth adaptation of the classic Louisa May Alcott novel, and it’s safe to say this one is in the running for best adaptation of the story—ever. Directed by rising directorial juggernaut Greta Gerwig (the magnificent, ultra-fantastic Lady Bird)—who has a vision with her films that declares, “Hey, we aren’t screwing around here!”—her third feature is an across-the-board stunner. It’s also chock-full of tremendous performances, and it’s written and directed by Gerwig, whose vision makes this an admirable update of a precious work. The incredible Saoirse Ronan, who also starred in Lady Bird, headlines as Jo March, eldest sister of the March clan, which includes three others: Meg (Emma Watson), Amy (Florence Pugh) and Beth (Eliza Scanlen). Ronan, not surprisingly, makes the intrepid character of Jo her own, a budding writer who is trying to get her ideas past a crusty editor (Tracy Letts, who had a damn fine 2019). Gerwig, in a departure from past adaptations, focuses more on the girls as adults, with flashbacks to their younger days. In doing this, she has chosen not to cast Amy with two different actresses. Pugh, who is well into her 20s, plays Amy at every stage, even falling through the ice as a pre-teen. I’d say that was an odd choice, but the other choice would be to have less screen time for Pugh, and I say a big no to that. Yes, she doesn’t look like she’s 12, but who cares? She’s a master in every scene. Timothée Chalamet steps into the role of Theodore “Laurie” Laurence, and there couldn’t have been a better choice for the role.
Adam Sandler is having a pretty good year in 2019. He’s made a triumphant return to Saturday Night Live as host, and he reteamed with Jennifer Aniston for the actually fairly watchable Murder Mystery on Netflix. And, oh, yeah, he has just made what is, by far, the greatest film of his beautifully erratic career. With Uncut Gems, Sandler joins forces with directors Benny and Josh Safdie, makers of the excellent Robert Pattinson vehicle Good Time, and delivers the kind of dramatic performance—fully committed and thoroughly proficient—that he’s hinted at in the past with strong efforts in Punch-Drunk Love and The Meyerowitz Stories. As Howard Ratner, a New York City jewelry store owner and gambling addict, Sandler catapults himself into the upper echelon of today’s fine actors—not bad for the creative force behind Grown Ups 2. The film doesn’t just thrive on performances; it’s bursting with style and originality in its overall approach. The Safdies adopt a visual and sound style that makes Howard’s crazed adventure a swirling trip. It’s edited with the sort of electricity that keeps you riveted, with psychedelic trips inside opals, and even Howard’s colon, to boot. Apart from being one of the year’s best films, it’s also one of its most original.
by Todd SouTH
The Wet Hen Cafe serves a quiche lorraine with a cup of potato leek soup and an oatmeal cranberry white chocolate cookie.
Soak it in Wet Hen Cafe is described as “American comfort food with a French twist.” Though the phrase “mad as a wet hen” comes to mind, the cute little brunch space is anything but. Locally produced art, candles, flour sack towels, jewelry and Blind Dog coffee are available for sale, as well as puzzles, books, etc. Seating is cozy and a bit limited, though there are a couple of extra patio tables for warmer months. We felt fortunate to snag a table in between the very busy weekend breakfast and lunch rushes, but you wouldn’t know it from the service. Food arrived amazingly fast, and the staff was very attentive. This is a crew of folks who really seem to enjoy what they’re doing. There are a variety of breakfast dishes, sandwiches, salads, soups, quiches and other baked goods to choose from. We started with a plate of biscuits and gravy ($8.25), two biscuits topped with country gravy and three strips of thick-cut bacon from a choice of that or breakfast sausage in link or patty form. The bacon was perfectly crispy, and the biscuits fluffy, though the slightly pastey gravy was improved with a bit of salt and pepper. All of the other plates ordered were served with an excellent oatmeal-white chocolate-cranberry cookie. Further confirming the place’s baking prowess, a warm slice of bacon and sautéed onion Quiche Lorraine ($6.95) was cheesy, savory goodness ensconced in an impeccably flaky crust. Having grown up with my mom’s legendary pies, I have a deep respect for a crust of this caliber. The Le Fromage ($8.95) grilled cheese sandwich is tomato with cheddar, jack and Swiss cheeses and a bit of spicy mustard on grilled sourdough—simple, but perfectly executed. Another grilled sandwich, the Conquest ($10.25), combined roast beef, sautéed 18
mushroom, purple onion, bell pepper and Thousand Island dressing on Parmesan-crusted sourdough. Again, it was nothing extravagant but oh-so enjoyable. Pro tip: order both and split them with a friend. The day’s lunch special was a super hot-fromthe-oven crock of three cheese macaroni ($12.95) with ham, cheddar and Swiss cheeses, topped with shredded Parmesan and toasted bread crumbs. It was served with a cup of soup. I chose potato leek, although hearty chicken, cream of mushroom, and clam chowder made for a tough decision. The crouton-topped soup was very creamy, well seasoned— with a bit of enjoyable peppery aftertaste—and the leek’s alliumness showed through. Having enjoyed the oatmeal cookies, we ended our meal with a slice of warm apple pie ($4.50) and a chocolate espresso cookie ($1). The slice of pie was dusted in powdered sugar and unsurprisingly every bit as good as the quiche. Layers of thin-sliced, tart apple were combined with plenty of cinnamon and spice—not too sweet—and a crust as flaky as a roommate perpetually late on the rent. The thick cookie’s texture was reminiscent of a dark chocolate brownie, with espresso beans baked in. I really liked the oatmeal cookie, but this morsel was a level up. You can advance order whole pies or quiches— which I plan to do—and they do catering as well. In a town with a ton of options for brunch, this familyrun enterprise has managed to beat the odds and kept up its level of quality and service for a decade. My only regret is not having become a regular years ago, something I aim to correct. Ω
Wet Hen Cafe
3979 S. McCarran blvd., 657-8880
Wet Hen Cafe is open Tuesday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Learn more at wethencafe.com.
by jeRi davis
j e ri d @ne w s re v i e w . c o m
Mark Cleveland has aspirations of being the RNC “house” band.
Party line The Republicats A letter arrived at the Reno News & Review offices a few weeks ago. It was addressed from “the Republicats” and began as follows: “Did you know the Republican Party has a ‘house’ band this year traveling with their larger rallys [sic]? Crazy huh? Well it’s so, and we’re from Reno, NV. We’re the Republicats.” The letter was an invite to watch the band play at the Musician Rehearsal Center—587 Dunn Circle, Sparks—on Jan. 10. A postscript noted, “I know we’re not politically aligned, but we’re still a ‘local band makes good’ story.” Intrigued, I called the number listed in the letter. A man named Mark Cleveland answered. I told him I’d see him at the show and speak with him afterward. On the afternoon of Jan. 10, representatives from the Washoe County Republican Party gathered in the showroom attached to the rehearsal center. The show, I learned, was actually more of a try-out. Cleveland, on guitar, was preparing to play a few covers and a few originals with the help of a bass player and drummer. These guys, however, wouldn’t be a part of the Republicats’ aspiring touring outfit. The band played a four-song set comprised of a cover of “Draggin’ the Line,” an instrumental original, a cover of “Long Live Rock,” and another instrumental original. The covers were solid. The instrumental numbers, also worked, with a vibe a bit reminiscent of swamp rock a la Muscle Shoals. When they’d finished, the party reps—including John Carey, second vice chair and chief of staff for the Washoe Republicans—said they’d be in touch. So, the RNC’s “house” band definitely wasn’t a done deal, right? “The goal is to do their rallies and stuff around the nation,” he said.
The idea came to him when he attended a Trump rally in Billings, Montana. “They had this big, beautiful sound setup but with no band. And it was such a great crowd. I mean, that’s probably not your thing, but it was a really super friendly crowd. The vibe was just really awesome— because everybody was on the same page, you know? … I thought, ‘Man, all they need is a band here.’” He kept considering it after the rally. “And I thought, well, a rapper would be disingenuous for the right, you know, someone of that ilk,” he said. “And a heavy metal band—that’s just going to alienate people. … These are Led Zeppelin fans from the ’70s, who grew up.” As a lifelong multi-instrumentalist and a Republican since he was first old enough to vote when Ronald Reagan ran for his second term, Cleveland said he conceived it as a way of remaining loyal to his life’s two passions—and as a way to get his music out there, “in the record bin of life.” But if the RNC accepted his “house band” idea, Cleveland said he’d likely have to go to Los Angeles, Nashville or Branson, Missouri, to find the caliber of touring musicians he’s looking for. And, even then, he figured it’d be difficult. “On the right, it’s tough because most of the artsy people, just about all of them, I’ve found—especially looking for musicians— they tend to gravitate to the left,” he said. Could it be that people on the Left tend to be advocates who happy to see tax dollars allocated to arts funding? “That’s true,” he conceded, adding, that he also believes it’s because “in the past the Left wasn’t against free speech.” They seem to be now, he said. We agreed to disagree. I told him to let me know what the party members said. On Tuesday, Jan. 16, Cleveland emailed and called to say things were moving forward and he’d soon be on his way to Nashville to recruit musicians. Perhaps, in the coming months, we’ll begin to see the Republicats take to rally stages. Ω
Awon, Butterz, 10pm, no cover
Back 2 School with D_ABBA & Friends, 10pm, no cover with college ID
5 STAR SALOON
Karaoke, 9pm, no cover
Dance party, 10pm, $5 no cover before 10pm
214 W. Commercial Row, (775) 813-6689
132 West St., (775) 499-5655
ALIBI ALE WORKS (INCLINE)
931 Tahoe Blvd., Incline Village, (775) 831-8300
ALIBI ALE WORKS (TRUCKEE)
Jan. 16, 8 p.m. Cargo Concert Hall 255 N. Virginia St. 398-5400
Wild Ginger, 8:30pm, no cover
10069 Bridge St., Truckee, (530) 536-5029
1044 E. Fourth St., (775) 324-5050
Comedy Night: Jim Flemming, PK Hutchinson, Sarah Rooker, 9pm, $5
BAR OF AMERICA
10040 Donner Pass Rd., Truckee, (530) 587-2626
Carson Comedy Club, Carson Nugget, 507 N. Carson St., Carson City, (775) 8821626: Marc Yaffee, Fri, 8pm, $15 Laugh Factory, Silver Legacy Resort Casino, 407 N. Virginia St., (775) 3257401: Adam Hunter, Thu, Sun, 7:30pm, $21.95; Fri-Sat, 7:30pm, 9:30pm, $27.45 LEX at Grand Sierra Resort, 2500 E. Second St., (775) 789-5399: DC Ervin, Fri, 6:30pm, $10 The Library, 134 W. Second St., (775) 6833308: Open Mic Comedy, Sun, Wed, 8pm, no cover Pioneer Underground, 100 S. Virginia St., (775) 322-5233: DC Ervin, Thu, 7:30pm, $7-$12; Fri, 9pm, $12-$17; Sat, 6:30pm, 9:30pm, $12-$17; Sun, 7:30pm, $12-$17
555 E. Fourth St., (775) 499-5549
CARGO CONCERT HALL
255 N. Virginia St., (775) 398-5400
538 S. Virginia St., (775) 329-5558
10142 Rue Hilltop Rd., Truckee, (530) 587-5711
Dance party, 10pm, $5 no cover before 10pm
Karaoke, 9pm, W, no cover
The Drivers, 8:30pm, no cover
Trivia Night, 7pm, Tu, no cover
DJ Abilities, DJ Nomad, 8pm, $5
Bluegrass jam, 6pm, no cover
Cellar Door (post punk, experimental) w/DJs Tigerbunny, Jon Potter, 9pm, $5
Sounds of the City: Romeo Sebastian, Michelle Belle, 5pm, no cover
The Band Apothic, 9pm, no cover
The Band Apothic, 9pm, no cover
DJ Abilities, Glass Tung, Be:Razz, 9pm, $15
Desert Hearts 18 Hour Takeover: Mikey Lion, Lee Reynolds, 6pm, $65
D&D, 8:30pm, no cover
Roger Scimé, 8:30pm, no cover
Kelly Bentson & Jeff, 6:30pm, no cover
Whiskey Preachers, 9pm, no cover
Myke Read & The Damn Ole Band, JUST-IN Beaver, 8:30pm, no cover
FAT CAT BAR & GRILL (MIDTOWN)
Jamie Rollins, 8:30pm, no cover
Nick Eng, 8pm, no cover
1401 S. Virginia St., (775) 453-2223
Open Mic Night, 7pm, M, no cover Swing dance, 7:30pm, Tu, no cover
Post shows online by registerin g at www.newsr eview. com/reno. D eadline is the Frida y before public ation.
Traditional Irish session, 7pm, Tu, Wed. Night Showcase, 7pm, W, no cover
Frog & Toad, 6:30pm, no cover
DAVIDSON’S DISTILLERY 275 E. Fourth St., (775) 324-1917
Subtronics, HE$H, Chee., Bommer, Level Up, 8pm, $20
CEOL IRISH PUB
First Take featuring Rick Metz, 7pm, Tu, no cover
Peaceful, Eco-Literate, Dynamic Community! FREE public Montessori Education for grades K-8 Tuition-based program for preschool-aged children
Enrolling for fall 2020 Introductory seminar open to all interested families! Jan. 21, 2020, 6 pm 2590 Orovada St. Primary-Pre-K thru Kindergarten
Jan. 22, 2020, 6 pm 2025 Silverada Blvd. Adolescent 7th and 8th
Contact Enrollment Coordinator, Stephanie Turner at email@example.com Visit our website for complete enrollment procedures and program information www.hdmsreno.com 20
Jan. 22, 2020, 6 pm 2590 Orovada St. Elementary 1st-6th
The holland ProjecT 140 Vesta St., (775) 448-6500
Bijou Blue, Blackstallion, Nightling, visuals by Vera Miller, 7:30pm, $5
Nico’s Mystery, Ancient Baby, Noah Dane, 7:30pm, $5
Chad Flores album release with Só Sol, My Acoustic Heart, 8:30pm, $5
2) BLUNDERBUSST, My Dallas Teens, Acid Reality Casualty Test, 9pm, $5
2) M Section, Boss’ Daughter, Me Time, 9pm, $5
jUB jUB’S ThIrST Parlor 71 S. Wells Ave., (775) 384-1652 1) Showroom 2) Bar Room
Justus Profitt, 7:30pm, M, $7 La Neve, 7:30pm, Tu, $5-$7 1) YBN Cordae, 24KGoldn, ZP Ratik, Trev $tone, 7:30pm, $20
The loVInG cUP
Motown Mondays, 9pm, M, no cover
188 California Ave., (775) 322-2480
MIdTown wIne Bar
DJ Abilities Unplugged: Open Mic Thursdays, 7pm, no cover
Arizona Jones, 8:30pm, no cover
Carolyn Dolan Duo, 8pm, no cover
Proyecto X, El Jossi, 10pm, no cover for women before 11pm
Gozadera Latina: DJs Mario B, Rafa, Miggz, 10pm, free for women before 11pm
PIGnIc PUB & PaTIo
House Warming: Roger That!, Desiderata, Hot Dad, 8pm, no cover
DJ EthiK, 10pm, no cover
1527 S. Virginia St., (775) 800-1960
2100 Victorian Ave., Sparks, (775) 507-1626
235 Flint St., (775) 376-1948
The Polo loUnGe
DJ Trivia, 7pm, no cover
DJ Bobby G, 8:30pm, no cover
DJ Bobby G, 8:30pm, no cover
Adam Springob, 6pm, no cover
Kat Heart, 8pm, no cover
Greg Gilmore, 8pm, no cover
1559 S. Virginia St., (775) 322-8864
1401 S. Virginia St., (775) 384-6526
761 S. Virginia St., (775) 221-7451
Thursday Night Salsa—Santos de la Salsa, 7pm, no cover before 9:30pm
215 S. Virginia St., (775) 786-4774
VIrGInIa STreeT BrewhoUSe 211 N. Virginia St., (775) 433-1090
Silent Disco, 10pm, $TBA
whISKeY dIcK’S Saloon
2660 Lake Tahoe Blvd., S. Lk. Tahoe, (530) 544-3857
Brüka theatre presents
30 artists. Five minutes each to share the unique characteristics oF making art & community in reno
0 20172& 18m
y uar Jan
P 7:00 5 -$ 2 t ii $40 r a rp ii t i o rt i & a par p
7 75. 323. 32 2 1 www. Bruk a . o r g
Jan. 17, 9 p.m. The BlueBird 555 E. Fourth St. 499-5549
Milton Merlos, 7pm, W, no cover
Karaoke, 8pm, M, no cover Matt Bushman, 8pm, Tu, no cover
Country Dance Party, 7pm, no cover
Country line dance lessons and dance party, 6pm, W, no cover
ONOFF, Engine Fire, Flood Fire Death Drought, 9:30pm, $6-$7
False Freedom, Hired Fun, Leecher, 9:30pm, $5-$6
A Wormhole Could Kill Us All, Cryptilians, Hector Acevedo, 8pm, W, $6
Cell, Lincoln Skinz, 8pm, $TBA Winter Wonderland Party, 11pm, $5
Biggest Little Brawl For All, 8pm, $5-$40 Silent Disco Black Light Party, 10pm, $TBA
Purification By Fire, Anhedonia, Horseneck, Weight of the Tide, 9pm, $10
enter to win
La Neve Jan. 21, 7:30 p.m. The Holland Project 140 Vesta St. 448-6500
DJ Abilities, Glass Tung, Homage, PLVST, 8pm, $10
Harrah’s Reno Saturday January 25 at 9pm
To enTer Contest brought to you by
1. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org 2. Put “Ignite” in the subject line 3. Include full name and birth date Deadline to enter is Thursday 01-23-20 at 9am. Winner will be notified by email. Limit one entry per person. Good luck!
BOOMTOWN CASINO HOTEL 2100 garSON rOaD, VerDi, (775) 345-6000 gUitar Bar JASON KING: Thu, 1/16, 6pm, no cover ROCKIT TOWN DUO: Fri, 1/17, 5pm, no cover THE LOOK: Fri, 1/17, Sat, 1/18, 9pm, no cover JASON KING DUO: Sat, 1/18, 5pm, no cover STEPHEN LORD: Sun, 1/19, 5pm, no cover GARY DOUGLAS: Sun, 1/19, 9pm, no cover JAMIE ROLLINS: Mon, 1/20, 6pm, no cover JASON KING: Tue, 1/21, 6pm, no cover DAVID LEWIS: Wed, 1/22, 6pm, no cover
CARSON NUGGET tHe LOFt ESCALADE: Fri, 1/17, Sat, 1/18, 9pm, no cover
CARSON VALLEY INN 1627 HigHway 395, MiNDeN, (775) 782-9711 CaBaret SAUCY BAND: Thu, 1/16, 7pm, Fri, 1/17, Sat, 1/18, 8pm, no cover
ELDORADO RESORT CASINO
500 N. Sierra St., (775) 329-0711
345 N. VirgiNia St., (775) 786-5700
HEROES OF ROCK & ROLL: Fri, 1/17, Sat, 1/18, 9pm,
STUDENT BODY THURSDAYS WITH VJ RIZZO:
eL JeFe’S CaNtiNa SKYY HIGH FRIDAY WITH DJ MO FUNK: Fri, 1/17, 10pm, no cover
REVEL SATURDAYS WITH DJ CHRIS ENGLISH: Sat, 1/18, 10pm, no cover
CRYSTAL BAY CASINO
14 HigHway 28, CryStaL Bay, (775) 833-6333
507 N. CarSON St., CarSON City, (775) 882-1626
CIRCUS CIRCUS RENO
The Southern California punk band will play a few West Coast shows, including one at Lake Tahoe, before heading off to Australia next month. The band's latest release Never Gonna Die is the first full album of new songs with singer Jim Lindberg, guitarist Fletcher Dragge, drummer Byron McMackin and bassist Randy Bradbury in over a decade. Produced by longtime Pennywise collaborator Cameron Webb, Never Gonna Die came to life in the same space where the band penned classic songs with late bassist Jason Thirsk. With their quintessential power to merge the subversive and the celebratory, Pennywise have built the album on fast-paced anthems expertly engineered to inspire radical change, personal empowerment, relentless hijinks and reckless fast times. Pennywise, along with special guests Adolescents, Guttermouth and Slaughterhouse, will perform at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 18, in the showroom at MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa, 55 Highway 50, Stateline. Tickets are $27.50-$30. Visit www.montbleuresort.com.
CrOwN rOOM A RATED R COMEDY SHOW WITH JOE SIB, JOSH ADAM MEYERS & JEREMIAH WATKINS: Thu, 1/16, 8pm, $15-$18
THEO KATZMAN WITH RHETT MADISON: Fri, 1/17, 8:30pm, $20-$25
AN EVENING WITH RAILROAD EARTH: Sun, 1/19, 8pm, $30-$35
reD rOOM CHANGO, ZEBRAH & CHRISTIAN GODDELL: Sat, 1/18, 11pm, no cover
Thu, 1/16, 10pm, no cover
DJ BIRD & VJ RIZZO: Fri, 1/17, Sat, 1/18, 10pm, no cover
DJ RONI V: Sun, 1/19, 10pm, no cover LIVE BAND KARAOKE WITH ROCK U ENT.: Mon, 1/20, Wed, 1/22, 10pm, no cover
BREW CLUB TUESDAYS WITH DJ MARK TWYMAN: Tue, 1/21, 9pm, no cover
NOVi DJ SCENICK & DJ RONI V: Fri, 1/17, Sat, 1/18, 9pm, no cover
rOXy’S LiVe PiaNO Bar LIVE PIANO: Thu, 1/16, Fri, 1/17, Sat, 1/18, Sun, 1/19, Mon, 1/20, Tue, 1/21, Wed, 1/22, 4:30pm, no cover
DJ OSCAR PEREZ: Fri, 1/17, 10pm, no cover DJ MO FUNK: Sat, 1/18, 10pm, no cover
GRAND SIERRA RESORT 2500 e. SeCOND St., (775) 789-2000 graND tHeatre TIFFANY HADDISH: Fri, 1/17, 8pm, $45-$105
LeX NigHtCLUB THROWBACK THURSDAY WITH DJ SWERVE-1: Thu, 1/16, 6pm, no cover
November 8 – April 24 • 10pm harveys Cabaret
See box office for details and age restrictions. Shows subject to change or cancellation. Management reserves the right to change or cancel without notice. Must be 21 or older to gamble. Know When To Stop Before You Start. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-522-4700. ©2019, Caesars License Company, LLC
Post shows online by registering at www.newsreview.com/reno. Deadline is the Friday before publication.
Tiffany Haddish Jan. 17, 8 p.m. Grand Sierra Resort 2500 E. Second St. 789-2000
HARRAH’S RENO 219 N. CENTER ST., (775) 786-3232 SAMMy’S SHOW ROOM IGNITE CABARESQUE: Sat, 1/18, 9pm, $30.04-$39.22
HARVEYS LAKE TAHOE FLASHBACK FRIDAY WITH DJ EDDIE Z: Fri, 1/17, 10pm, $10
TWISTA: Sat, 1/18, 10pm, $20
WILLIAM HILL RACE AND SPORTS BAR COUNTRY MUSIC NIGHTS & DANCE LESSONS: Fri, 1/17, Sat, 1/18, 10:30pm, no cover
HARD ROCK LAKE TAHOE 50 HIgHWAy 50, STATELINE, (844) 588-7625 CENTER BAR DJ SET: Fri, 1/17, Sat, 1/18, 9pm, no cover
VINyL SHOWROOM RIFFS COMEDY CLUB WITH MARC YAFFEE: Sat, 1/18, 8pm, $15
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FOR THE WEEK OF JANUARY 16, 2020 For a complete listing of this week’s events or to post events to our online calendar, visit www.newsreview.com. DEMOCRACY AND THE ENVIRONMENT: Stephen Lafer, a Great Basin Institute board member and an associate professor emeritus at the University of Nevada, Reno, will discuss if democratically determined decisions are possible regarding climate change and its impact on the environment. Sat, 1/18, 10am. Free. Galena Creek Visitor Center, 18250 Mount Rose Highway, (775) 849-4948.
FRIDAY FUN NIGHTS: Enjoy free face painting, ice skating or treats around a fire pit while a DJ spins your favorite tunes. Fri, 1/17, 5pm. Northstar California Resort, 5001 Northstar Drive, Truckee, www.northstarcalifornia.com.
GIVING FUND SPEAKER SERIES: The Giving
TCHAIKOVSKY’S VIOLIN CONCERTO
The Reno Phil continues its 2019-2020 Classix season with a concert featuring Sarah Kirkland Snider’s Something for the Dark. Inspired by a poem by Philip Levine, the composition is an evocative journey about hope, endurance and renewal. Violinist Esther Yoo (pictured), who was recently named one of Classic FM’s Top Artists under 30, will join the Reno Phil to perform Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in D major, op. 35, celebrated for its thrilling display of virtuosity and melodic beauty. Nielsen’s Symphony No. 4 “The Inextinguishable” will round out the program. The work was written during the backdrop of World War I, depicting the war with a dramatic duel between two timpanists. The symphony conveys the idea of an “inextinguishable” life force as an energy that withstands suffering and persists through adversity. The Reno Philharmonic Orchestra performs at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 18, and at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 19, at the Pioneer Center for the Performing Arts, 100 S. Virginia St. Tickets are $29-$89. Tickets include a free pre-concert discussion with Music Director Laura Jackson and program note author Chris Morrison one hour before the concert begins. Visit www.renophil.com.
Fund kicks off a five-part speaker series. The event begins with light appetizers at 4:30pm, followed by the presentation at 4:50pm. This month’s topic is “Driving in Snow and Ice” presented by Officer Pete Mann of the California Highway Patrol, Truckee. Thu, 1/16, 4:30pm. $5-$20. Alder Creek Adventure Center, 15275 Alder Creek Road, Truckee, (530) 587-9400, TahoeDonner.com/Speaker-Series.
GUIDED HIKE: Enjoy a guided hike through Galena Creek Park with a local specialist. Please bring appropriate clothing and plenty of water. If there’s enough snow, this will be a snowshoe hike. There are a few pairs of snowshoes at the visitor center available for rent. The hike intensity varies, depending on the audience. Sat, 1/11, 10am. Free. Galena Creek Visitor Center, 18250 Mount Rose Highway, (775) 849-4948.
HOUSEPLANT LOVE: Learn all about
houseplants. Tue, 1/21, 6pm. Free. Spanish Springs Library, 7100-A Pyramid Highway, Sparks, (775) 424-1800.
KNITTING CLUB: This group is open to anyone
CLIMATE CHANGE SCIENCE AND SOLUTIONS: Geophysicist John Henry Beyer explains the science behind climate change. By representing large datasets visually, explaining complex concepts in accessible language and drawing on psychologists’ research on reactions to disturbing information, Dr. Beyer offers the public a path forward under what might otherwise feel like insurmountable challenges. No host bar available at 5:30pm, followed by the presentation at 6pm. Thu, 1/16, 5:30pm. $10-$12. UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center, 291 Country Club Drive, Incline Village, tahoe.ucdavis.edu/tahoesciencecenter.
39 NORTH—PARTY IN THE PLAZA: 39 North Downtown, City of Sparks, Sparks Heritage Museum and Sierra Arts Foundation present this monthly event highlighting art, specialty food, farmers, crafts, music and cultural heritage. There will be vendors, food trucks, local artists, live entertainment and chef demos in indoor and outdoor venues. Thu, 1/16, 4pm. Free. Victorian Square Plaza, 1250 Victorian Ave., Sparks, www.39northdowntown.com.
THE ART OF COLLECTING WITH A PURPOSE: Ashley Hlebinsky, Robert W. Woodruff curator of the Cody Firearms Museum, discusses the evolution of collecting since the 16th century and examines how private passion impacts public display. Hlebinsky explores how collectors have been perceived throughout the years, and how collectors have had a historic role in the establishment of museums and methods of firearm display over the centuries. Thu, 1/16, 6pm. $8-$12. Nevada Museum of Art, 160 W. Liberty St., www.nevadaart.org.
THE CONSTITUTION—WHAT IT MEANS TO ME:
Moderated by media ethics professor Alison Gaulden, a diverse panel of experts will unpack the challenges, the opportunities and the solace that the United States Constitution brings to civic society at this month’s Nevada Humanities Salon. Fri, 1/17, 6pm. Free. Sundance Books and Music, 121 California Ave., (775) 786-1188.
who enjoys knitting or crocheting. Sat, 1/18, 1pm. Free. Northwest Reno Library, 2325 Robb Drive, (775) 787-4100.
LA FAMIGLIA PASSAGUAI: Artemisia MovieHouse presents a screening of this 1951 comedy directed by Aldo Fabrizi. In Italian with English subtitles. Sun, 1/19, 6pm. Free. Good Luck Macbeth Theatre Company, 124 W. Taylor St., (775) 6363386, www.artemisiamovies.weebly.com.
MEDIEVAL MENTALITIES ON WEAPONS AND WARFARE: Bretton Rodriguez, teaching assistant professor of Core Humanities at the University of Nevada, Reno, and Edward Schoolman, an associate professor in the Department of History at UNR, explore the relationships between medieval cultures and their weapons. The development of new and better martial technology shaped the nature of warfare in the medieval and early modern worlds, and it transformed the practical, decorative, social and metaphorical values of weapons of war. Fri, 1/17, noon. $10, free for NMA members, students. Nevada Museum of Art, 160 W. Liberty St., (775) 329-3333.
MYSTERY BOOK CLUB: This month’s title is
Gone by Randy Wayne White. Sun, 1/19, 1pm. Free. Spanish Springs Library, 7100A Pyramid Highway, Sparks, (775) 424-1800.
RADON EDUCATION PRESENTATION: The Nevada Radon Education Program of University of Nevada Cooperative Extension offers an informational presentation and free radon test kits. Sat, 1/18, 11am. Free. Sparks Library, 1125 12th St., Sparks, (775) 352-3200; Sun, 1/19, 11am. Free. Downtown Reno Library, 301 S. Center St., (775) 327-8300.
RINK AT THE ROW: The outdoor ice skating rink is open through Feb. 16. Skating hours are 3-10pm on Monday-Thursday, noon-11:30pm on Friday-Saturday, and noon-9:30pm on Sunday, depending on weather and ice conditions. Admission includes skate rental. Get $2 off admission if you bring your own ice skates. Thu, 1/16-Wed, 1/22. $12-$18. Rink at the Row, Sixth and Sierra streets, across from Circus Circus, (775) 329-0711, www.circusreno.com.
SO VERY LITERARY BOOK CLUB: The book club meets the third Thursday of every month. This month’s title is The Women by T.C. Boyle. Thu, 1/16, 2pm. Free. South Valleys Library, 15650-A Wedge Parkway, (775) 851-5190.
TUESDAY NIGHT YARN CREW: All skill levels and yarn-crafts are welcome. Bring your project to this “sit and knit.” Tue, 1/21, 5:30-7pm. Free. South Valleys Library, 15650-A Wedge Parkway, (775) 851-5190.
WINTER FIREWORKS: Enjoy winter fireworks celebration on Saturdays in January and February at the KT Deck. Fireworks shows are dependent on weather conditions. Sat, 1/18, 7pm. Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows, 1960 Squaw Valley Road, Olympic Valley, squawalpine.com.
WOMEN’S MARCH: The fourth annual march starts at the BELIEVE sign in downtown Reno and ends at the Reno Events Center. Enjoy speeches and local entertainment, as well as engage with community organizations and political candidates from different parties to get ideas on how you and your family can help throughout the year. Sat, 1/18, 11am-3pm. Free. City Plaza, 10 N. Virginia St., Reno Events Center, 400 N. Center St., womensmarchreno.org.
THE LILLEY: Shane Pickett—Dijinong Djina Boodja | Look at the Land that I Have Travelled. During his lifetime, Shane Pickett (1957-2010) was acclaimed as one of Western Australia’s most significant contemporary Aboriginal artists. This is the first major exhibition of Pickett’s work in the United States. There will be an opening reception at 5pm on Jan. 18. Museum hours are noon-4pm on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, noon8pm on Thursday and 10am-6pm on Saturday. Thu, 1/16-Sat, 1/18, Mon, 1/20Wed, 1/22. Free. John and Geraldine Lilley Museum of Art (The Lilley), University Arts Building, University of Nevada, Reno, 1664 N. Virginia St., (775) 784-6682, www.unr.edu/art/museum.
MCKINLEY ARTS & CULTURE CENTER: Along the Truckee River—A Bob Adams Retrospective. Adams’ paintings show a slice of life in Reno at end of the 1980s and the beginning of the 1990s. The exhibition runs through Jan. 24. Thu, 1/16-Fri, 1/17, Mon, 1/20-Wed, 1/22, 8am-5pm. Free. McKinley Arts & Culture Center, 925 Riverside Drive, (775) 334-6264.
SIERRA NEVADA COLLEGE: A Series of Ricochets. This exhibition focuses on recalibration as it relates to the interweaving of conceptual practices and personal trajectories. Artists include Valery Jung Estabrook, Nicholas B. Jacobsen and Eric-Paul Riege. The show runs through Feb. 14. Thu, 1/16-Fri, 1/17, Mon, 1/20-Wed, 1/22, 10am. Free. Sierra Nevada College, 999 Tahoe Blvd., Incline Village, (775) 831-1314.
SOUTH VALLEYS LIBRARY: Learning and Communicating. Painter Jade Chen’s exhibition is on display through February. Thu, 1/16-Sat, 1/18, Mon, 1/20-Wed, 1/22, 10am. Free. South Valleys Library, 15650-A Wedge Parkway, (775) 851-5190.
ONSTAGE COME IN FROM THE COLD: The winter family entertainment series continues with a performance by cowboy poet Larry Maurice. Sat, 1/18, 7pm. $3 suggested donation per person. Western Heritage Interpretive Center at Bartley Ranch Regional Park, 6000 Bartley Ranch Road, (775) 828-6612.
TAKE FIVE II—MAKING ART IN RENO: Brüka
ART CATERPILLAR’S HOOKAH LOUNGE: This art show features work by Mark Walker, Raven Rodriguez and Hollye Richards. Sat, 1/18, 3pm. Free. Caterpillar’s Hookah Lounge, 314 S. Carson St., Carson City, (775) 883-2777.
THE HOLLAND PROJECT: Wooster IB Art Exhibition. The Holland Project presents this annual showcase of works created by the students in the Wooster IB Visual Arts Program. There will be a closing reception at 6pm on Friday, Jan. 17. Thu, 1/16-Fri, 1/17, noon-6pm. Free. The Holland Project, 140 Vesta St., (775) 448-6500.
Theatre invites more than 30 regional artists to show in just five minutes how they make their magic during this two-day event. Each night features a different group of artists. Proceeds from the event benefit Brüka Theatre’s programming and running costs. Fri, 1/17-Sat, 1/18, 7pm. $30-$55. Brüka Theatre, 99 N. Virginia St., (775) 323-3221, www.bruka.org.
WHAT RHYMES WITH AMERICA: Restless Artists Theatre presents Melissa James Gibson’s poignant, funny play about estrangement and the partially examined life. Thu, 1/16-Sat, 1/18, 7:30pm; Sun, 1/19, 2pm. $8-$15. Restless Artists Theatre, 295 20th St., Sparks, (775) 525-3074, rattheatre.org.
BY AMY ALKON
Charmin school Yesterday, my roommate picked up some household supplies (toilet paper, sponges, etc.) and asked me to split the cost. I’ve bought plenty of household supplies in the two years we’ve lived together without ever asking for any money. It feels weird and cheap that he’s suddenly doing this. Am I being unreasonable in feeling this way, or is he being seriously petty? Weird conflicts like this make you start seeing your roommate differently, and not in a good way. As for what might’ve gotten your roommate so testy about the division of expenses, the human mind seems to have a built-in bookkeeping department. We seem to expect 50-50 splits (which we perceive as “fair”) and get unhinged when another person gets a bigger share. Our emotions are an essential part of our mind’s accounting staff, driving us to take action to correct imbalances. Neuroscientist Matthew Lieberman has found that fairness seems to read as emotionally “rewarding” to us—that is, feelgood. Unfairness, on the other hand, leads to “aversive” emotions (the feelbad kind), motivating us to even out the balance of things so we can feel better. The sort of scorekeeping your roommate’s engaging in seems to be triggered when people perceive they’ve been treated unfairly. Their perception may be wrong—and that may actually be beneficial for them. Though we tend to assume we evolved to perceive things accurately, research by evolutionary psychologists Martie Haselton and David Buss suggests that we make self-protective errors in perception—sometimes seeing things as greater than or less than they actually are. It seems we evolved to err in whichever direction would be least costly to us in terms of our ability to survive and mate. In harsh ancestral times, for example, letting somebody take advantage of us would likely have posed a greater threat to our survival than perceiving (perhaps incorrectly) that they weren’t pulling their weight. Putting them on notice that we wouldn’t just roll over for their slackerhood showed them (and others) that we’d stand up for ourselves, telling them that we’d make a poor choice of victim.
Even if your roommate is wrong in perceiving you as some rubber-gloved, Drano- and dish soap-poaching freeloader, as long as he feels the cleaning supplies split is unfair, it’s likely to make for a toxic living situation. You could suggest using an app like Splitwise to tally up what you each spend on household supplies and then reimburse each other. This might even show him that you are spending more or that things are close to equal. What’s important is that it makes the spending transparent and, ultimately, transparently 50-50.
To the better end My boyfriend and I just ended it. We had fun together and sex was great, but we’re bad for each other. He’s emotionally withholding, and I want love and openness in a relationship. Breaking up was the right thing, but I miss him horribly. Are there any hacks to make a breakup less devastating? You say it yourself: “We’re bad for each other.” Unfortunately, understanding this probably doesn’t make amputating your partner any less devastating. But research by psychologist Lauren C. Howe suggests your perspective on the breakup matters. Howe finds that emotional recovery after a breakup comes out of treating it “as a learning experience ... embracing rejections as opportunities for growth.” Contrast this thinking—seeing a breakup as opportunity for self-improvement— with seeing a breakup as “selfdefining,” a sort of confirmation of some ugly “core truth” about oneself. Howe explains that this belief can cause the breakup to have a lingering impact, making people fear rejection and even “feel haunted by their past.” In other words, using your breakup as a conduit to the sort of relationship you want should dial down its negative effects. Focus on what you’ve learned and figure out what you need to do differently. Ω
Got a problem? Write Amy Alkon, 171 Pier Ave., No. 280, Santa Monica, CA 90405, or email AdviceAmy@aol.com (www.advicegoddess.com).
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TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Author Honoré Balzac (1799-1850) was born with sun and Mercury in Taurus and in the 10th house. Astrologers might hypothesize from these placements that he was ambitious, productive, tenacious, diligent, realistic and willful. The evidence supporting this theory is strong. Balzac wrote more than 80 novels that displayed a profound and nuanced understanding of the human comedy. I predict that 2020 will be a year when you could make dramatic progress in cultivating a Balzac-like approach in your own sphere. But here’s a caveat: Balzac didn’t take good care of his body. He drank far too much coffee and had a careless approach to eating and sleeping. My hope is that as you hone your drive for success, you’ll be impeccable in tending to your health. William Shakespeare and his wife had three kids. When he was 25, while the brood was still young, he started churning out literary masterpieces. By the time Will became a grandfather at age 43, he had written many of the works that ultimately made him one of history’s most illustrious authors. From this evidence, we might speculate that being a parent and husband heightened his creative flow. I bring this to your attention because I want to ask you: What role will commitment and duty and devotion play in your life during the coming months? (I suspect it’ll be a good one.)
CANCER (June 21-July 22): Cancerian-born painter
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has an insight I hope you’ll consider. He says, “It’s easier to do trivial things that are urgent than it is to do important things that are not urgent. It’s also easier to do little things we know we can do than to start on big things that we’re not so sure about.” I hope you’ll make this advice a priority in the coming weeks. You’ll be wise to prioritize important tasks, even those that aren’t urgent, as you de-emphasize trivial matters that tempt you to think they’re crucial. Focus on big things that are challenging, rather than on little things that are a snap.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Before he was 21 years old,
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n e w s r e v i e w . c o m
by ROb bRezsny
For the week o F January 16, 2020
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Free will astrology
Stanley Spencer (1891-1959) didn’t align himself with any artistic movement. Early on, his work was an odd blend of French post-Impressionism and 14thcentury Italian painting. I appreciate his stylistic independence, and suggest you draw inspiration from it in 2020. Another unique aspect of Spencer’s art was its mix of eroticism and religiosity. I think you’ll enjoy exploring that blend yourself in the coming months. Your spiritual and sexual longings could be quite synergistic. There’s one part of Spencer’s quirky nature I don’t recommend you imitate, however. He often wore pajamas beneath his clothes, even to formal occasions. Doing that wouldn’t serve your interests. (But it will be healthy for you to be somewhat indifferent to people’s opinions.)
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press in the 1440s. In subsequent decades, millions of mass-produced books became available for the first time, making their contents available to a far wider audience than ever before. The printing press caused other changes, too— some not as positive. For instance, people who worked as scribes found it harder to get work. In our era, big, culture-wide shifts are impacting our personal lives. Climate change, the internet, smart phones, automation and human-like robots are just a few examples. What are doing to adjust to the many innovations? And what will you do in the future? Now is an excellent time to meditate on these issues.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): You’re skilled at the art of self-editing. When bright new ideas well up in you, you understand they are not yet ready for prime time, but will need to be honed and finessed. When your creativity overflows, tantalizing you with fresh perspectives and novel approaches, you know that you’ll have to harness the raw surge. However, it’s also true that sometimes you go too far in your efforts to refine your imagination’s breakthroughs; you over-think and over-polish. But I have a good feeling about the coming weeks. I suspect you’ll find the sweet spot, self-editing with just the right touch.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Thomas Love Peacock was a Libran author whose specialty was writing satirical novels that featured people sitting around tables arguing about opinions and ideas. He was not renowned for cheerful optimism. And yet he did appreciate sheer beauty. “There is nothing perfect in this world,” he said, “except Mozart.” So much did Peacock love Mozart’s music that during one several-month stretch he attended six performances of the opera Don Giovanni. In this spirit, and in accordance with astrological indicators, I encourage you to make a list of your own perfect things—and spend extra time communing with them in the coming weeks.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Jean-Michel Basquiat started his career as a graffiti artist. When he evolved into being a full-time painter, he incorporated words amidst his images. On many occasions, he’d draw lines through the words. Why? “I cross out words so you will see them more,” he said. “The fact that they are obscured makes you want to read them.” In the coming weeks, you might benefit from discreetly using this strategy in your own life. In other words, draw attention to the things you want to emphasize by downplaying them or being mysterious about them or suggesting they are secret. Reverse psychology can be an asset for you.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Because of the onslaught of the internet and social media, lots of people no longer read books. But in 2020, I highly recommend that you not be one of that crowd. In my astrological opinion, you need more of the slow, deep wisdom that comes from reading books. You will also benefit from other acts of rebellion against the Short Attention Span Era. Crucial blessings will flow in your direction as you honor the gradual, incremental approach to everything.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): “I love to be surprised by something I have never thought of,” declares Capricorn actor Ralph Fiennes. According to my analysis of the astrological aspects, you’ll be wise to make that one of your top mottoes in 2020. Why? First, life is likely to bring to your attention a steady stream of things you’ve never imagined. And second, your ability to make good use of surprises will be at an all-time high. Here’s further advice to help ensure that the vast majority of your surprises will be welcome, even fun: Set aside as many of your dogmas and expectations as possible, so that you can be abundantly receptive to things you’ve never thought of.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): “I love fools’ experiments. I am always making them.” So said one of the most famous and influential scientists who ever lived, Aquarian-born naturalist Charles Darwin. In accordance with upcoming astrological factors, I invite you to draw inspiration from his approach. Allow yourself to explore playfully as you conduct fun research. Just assume that you have a mandate to drum up educational experiences, and that a good way to do that is to amuse yourself with improvisational adventures.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): “How do you get your main pleasure in life?” That question was posed to Scorpio author Evelyn Waugh and Piscean social reformer William Beveridge. Waugh said, “I get mine spreading alarm and despondency.” Beveridge said, “I get mine trying to leave the world a better place than I found it.” I hope you will favor Beveridge’s approach over Waugh’s in 2020—for two reasons. First, the world already has plenty of alarm and despondency; it doesn’t need even a tiny bit more. Second, aspiring to be like Beveridge will be the best possible strategy for fostering your mental and physical health.
You can call Rob Brezsny for your Expanded Weekly Horoscope: (900) 950-7700. $1.99 per minute. Must be 18+. Touchtone phone required. Customer service (612) 373-9785. And don’t forget to check out Rob’s website at realastrology.com.
BY BRAD BYNUM
Business is good so far? We were completely slammed on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. We did not have any way to prep enough food for what happened in here ... a good problem to have.
So the university spot is closed? Yes. … When we first opened, at least West Street was open—whatever space was open, customers could park there, because we only had three spots in front of University [Terrace], and once they took that away, it was almost impossible for people to park and come and eat. And we thought we’d have a little more foot traffic from students—but no, they eat mostly on campus with their WolfBucks.
Why this location?. We looked for two years for a spot. We looked in the northwest, and a couple of
Haley Moseley, left, seen here with business partner Jessie Henderson, is a co-owner of GourMelt, a gourmet grilled cheese restaurant which recently closed its former location near the university, and then, on Jan. 10, re-opened in a new spot, 113 Los Altos Parkway, Sparks. Moseley and Henderson are also the titular duo behind Two Chicks, 752 S. Virginia St., a popular midtown breakfast destination. We spoke to her during a busy lunch rush at GourMelt only a few days after it opened.
GourMelt was a food truck originally, right? GourMelt was a food truck, started in 2011. We ran that for four years. We opened Two Chicks in 2014. Stopped doing the food truck. Opened GourMelt at the university in 2016, and just closed that about a month ago—well, Thanksgiving. And then opened this.
Tell me more about the menu here.
spots fell through, and then this came up. And when you’re driving over Pyramid [Highway], and you look out here, and you see all these homes—I was like, this is going to be good. And we talked to the guy at Yogurt Beach two doors down, and he said that this is his best performing store.
It’s all grilled cheese sandwiches, and we just added four entrée salads, so we can cater to people who don’t necessarily want grilled cheese or they’re low carb. We opened right after New Year’s, so this is a fear of the New Year’s resolution. But so far, that’s not happening. We’ve got a kid’s menu. You can feed your kid for $5—grilled cheese and a bag of chips. And we have beer and wine, which we didn’t have at the university.
Two Chicks is such a hub of midtown. How is this different?
What have you heard from the community so far?
Well, GourMelt is the one that we always thought we could put in neighborhoods. So, you could put one in Spanish Springs, and you could put one in south Reno, and you could put one in the northwest, and you’re not going to compete with each other, because people tend to stay in their neighborhood when they’re home. And if you’re here, there’s everything. There’s a Marshalls and a Sprouts and a Home Depot and a Costco, and they don’t need to go anywhere else. So we’re servicing the Spanish Springs area. And when we open one in a few years in the northwest, we’ll be servicing the northwest area.
Sparks in itself has been so welcoming. All the city council members came by and shook our hands. We’re restaurant number 188 in Sparks, Nevada, I learned on opening day. They’re just really happy to have local food. There’s tons of chains in Sparks; there’s not a lot of local food. Somebody on our very first day, our soft opening, just wandered in, and she loved it, and she posted it on Nextdoor, the app, and then her whole neighborhood showed up. Not kidding. Look behind us—it’s just neighborhoods. And they’re itching for some home cooking. Ω
BY BRUCE VAN DYKE
Enumerating the obvious OK, Captain Obvious, reporting for duty! I’m ready to grab at some of this low-hanging fruit that’s dangling in our faces. Yes, I realize that stating the obvious is, well, obvious. And very uncool. But sod it. Somebody needs to do it. And I’m just the slob for the job. As John Lee Hooker once sang, “Momma, it’s in him and it’s got to come out!” Low-hanging fruit Numero Uno: The Impeachment Trial of Donald F. Trump. Has there ever been a larger pile of steaming bullshit set in front of the American people? Here ya go, folks, dig in! Fresh ’n’ tasty! There’s one reason, and only one reason, that Moscow Mitch is insisting on this absurd spectacle with zero witnesses—the defendant is one guilty sumbitch! Yes indeedy, Ole Don Don is totally, completely, without a doubt Guilty AF, and every one of these Retrumplican lickspittle senators
and every one of these Retrumplican congresscreeps knows it. EVERY STINKING ONE OF THEM. Which is, of course, why they are prepared to fight to the death to make sure that this “trial” will have no witnesses. (A trial with no witnesses? Isn’t that like a poker tournament without any cards?) This farce is the ultimate expression of party over country. Raving incompetent illegitimate dangerous Putin-sucking imbecile in the White House? Fuck it, he’s our boy! We’ve got your back, IMPOTUS! You just keep on tweetin’! And we’ll keep on traitorin’! Da! Da! Da! Hail Vlad! Hail Vlad! Hail Vlad! Actually, we just had a trial for Dum Dum—the Hearings in the House. Where 17 witnesses defied Agent Orange, took the stand and said, “Yep, this guy is guilty AF.” (Uh, Mr. President, we gotta admit, the optics aren’t looking real swell here.)
Low-hanging fruit Numero Dos: The total bullshit surrounding Dum Dum’s attempt to justify the killing of General Qasem Soleimani. All this twaddle about “an imminent attack” being masterminded by this “evil monster” is yet another plateload of steaming horse poop. By now, it’s painfully obvious there was no “imminent attack.” What happened was President Capone’s monkey boys Pence and Pompeo convinced him weeks ago that it was time to order a hit, so it looks like, you know, Trump has a pair. Sure enough, Twitler approved. “Yeah, a hit! Just like a real mob boss! Yeah! I’ve got a pair! For real! Cool! Hey look! I’m John Effing Gotti! Woo hoo! Back off, bitches, I’m a bad man! OK! Let’s do it! Let’s kill this guy! And, hey, Mike, I don’t have to fire anybody, do I?”