THIS WEEK in this issue
JULY 20 - JULY 27, 2011 VOL. 22 ISSUE 22 ISSUE #1049
PUBLISHED! SHE WROTE!
The current exhibit at Central Library honors Indiana’s rich literary heritage when it comes to female authors. The Big Four feted include Janet Flanner, Mabel Leigh Hunt, Jeannette Covert Nolan and Augusta Stevenson, but many others are celebrated as well. The life and work of one of these authors, Janet Flanner, is explored in depth. BY MICHAEL DABNEY AND LAURA MCPHEE COVER PHOTO BY LAURA MCPHEE
MELTDOWN IN NAPTOWN: EXTREME HEAT WAVE HITS INDY
As the death toll of the current heat wave mounts nationwide, Indiana scientists say that by understanding the unique pressures facing urban environments, we can better meet the needs of those most vulnerable to the dangers of extreme heat. BY REBECCA TOWNSEND
16 36 13 22 39 07 08 26 24 12 33
A&E CLASSIFIEDS COVER STORY FOOD FREE WILL ASTROLOGY HAMMER HOPPE MUSIC MOVIES NEWS WEIRD NEWS
DENVER FERGUSON: GRANDADDY OF ROCK ‘N’ ROLL In his new book The Chitlin’ Circuit and the Road to Rock ‘n’ Roll, Preston Lauterbach tells the story of Indiana Avenue mogul Denver Ferguson, a talent promoter, nightclub owner, gambling kingpin, community benefactor and, as Lauterbach puts it, “granddaddy of rock ‘n’ roll.” BY SCOTT SHOGER
from the readers As a former publisher of an indie arts newspaper who faced competition with Gannett in New Jersey, it was nice to see you guys win the fight against Metromix. I was visiting a friend in Indy back in 2003 when Gannett launched their publication and, by some strange co incidence, I was back in Indy when your RIP Metromix issue came. I thought your article “Good-bye Metromix” summed things up perfectly: “No matter what stories we are telling, they only make it to publication thanks to the dedicated efforts of our sales staff and the support of local advertisers.
The Gannett and Gannett-Tribune models works in reverse. Publications are created in order to generate revenue via advertising dollars and stories are often tailored to increase advertising sales or paid for by advertisers out right in the form of ‘advertorials.’” Keep doing what you’re doing. Companies like Gannett fail to understand the concept of editorial. They honestly believe that simply having the most money in a market should mean they will win. Thankfully, in markets across the country publications like yours are winning instead.
Gary Wien BELMAR, NJ
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HAMMER A tough city for a dreamer
Indy is hard on writers and artists
BY STEVE HAMMER SHAMMER@NUVO.NET
wenty years ago, Indiana writers were mostly all alone in the world, sitting at home reading manuscripts rendered with dot-matrix printers, hoping for some interest from an editor or publisher. Like it has so many other industries, the Internet changed all that. Voices once confined are now blogged to the world, even if readership is still confined to a small circle of friends and random visitors who stumble by via a search engine. They’re making the same amount of money — none — as they did two decades ago, but at least Indiana writers now have a public forum. It’s now possible to be a writer in Indiana who actually gets read. Traditionally, the really good and really smart Indiana writers throughout history leave the state. Kurt Vonnegut might have ended up at Lilly writing press
My mother, who saw him as a big celebreleases or in his family’s architecture rity, sent me over to get his autograph. business if he hadn’t fled to New York “You don’t want my autograph,” he and taken over the city. said. “I’m nobody special. I just get paid The writers left behind either went to to write in the newspaper.” He signed, work for the Indianapolis Star or made eventually, if only not to disappoint a litconnections with out-of-state newspatle kid. Years later, I met and befriended pers and magazines. Occasionally, the him when he taught Star’s owners temat IUPUI. I asked him porarily abandoned if he remembered the their right-wing incident. ideology and hired “I didn’t mind signgifted storytellers who ing an autograph for weren’t strict propayou,” he said. “But I gandists. also wanted you to For years, Thomas know that reporters R. Keating’s daily shouldn’t be celebrities. Star column brought We only write because stories of the city’s we have to write.” underdogs to mainIt was tough being stream attention. He – Thomas R. Keating a writer in those days wrote about a blind or, for that matter, a man who sold brooms reader. Without the on College Avenue, instant gratification of of the joys to be the Internet or the ease of ordering books found in the city’s predominantly black from Amazon, people who were hungry churches and of the people who passed for good books had to dig hard through by unnoticed on the street. mountains of paperback romance novels For a child of the 1970s looking for a champion of the oppressed, Tom Keating at thrift shops just to find On the Road or even The Catcher in the Rye . The librarwas one of few role models. Our family ies never seemed to have anything even read his columns every day and once, vaguely resembling hip. when I was about 12 years old, we even You had to travel to Chicago to find saw him at an Indianapolis Indians game the good stuff: Ferlinghetti, Ginsberg, at the old Bush Stadium on 16th Street.
“I’m nobody special. I just get paid to write in the newspaper.”
any of the Beat poets. My friends and I would obsessively collect and trade those books, along with the works of Hunter Thompson and Tom Wolfe, the so-called “New Journalists” of the 1960s whose ideas were ignored by local journalists. The young readers and writers of today have the advantage of instant information and communication. They need not remain isolated in their basements. They have the means to connect with others who share the struggle to wrangle observations into sentences and those sentences into stories. One of the most important things Mr. Keating told me was that real writers didn’t talk about writing. They just wrote. And the purest motivation is that of a person who writes because he or she must write, regardless of the response. It was true when he said it in the 1980s and it’s just as true today. Despite the cacophony of the Internet, of mindless talk radio and network TV, men and women are still typing the truths that emanate from the purest parts of their hearts and minds. And so we salute those lonely, unpaid wordsmiths who hope to create a better, or at least more logical, world with the simple power of their words. May they never go away and may their ideas carry off to the city like dandelion seeds blowing in the breeze.
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HOPPE Free to be stupid
Our most basic right
BY DAVID HOPPE DHOPPE@NUVO.NET
couple of Harvard researchers have come up with the dim and desperate idea that the only way to help a growing number of obese kids may be to take them away from their parents. Dr. David Ludwig, an obesity specialist, and Lindsey Murtagh, a lawyer and researcher, both of whom have affiliations with Harvard University, recently published an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association suggesting that, in some cases, over- weight kids would be better off if the government put them in temporary foster care. This, Dr. Ludwig told the Associated Press, would be ethically preferable to obesity surgery, supporting, “not just the child but the whole family, with the goal of reuniting child and family as soon as possible.” Dr. Ludwig added that some form of parenting education might be required. Ludwig and Murtagh’s proposal is dim because it flies in the face of the American idea of freedom. We Americans, for example, refuse to let the government control our guns. Every family can, if it chooses, become its own micro-militia. If we won’t let Uncle Sam take away our semiautomatic guns, can Ludwig and Murtagh really think the day will come when we let him take away our plus-sized kids? It is, of course, intriguing to imagine what America would be like if it were, in fact, the kind of place where a proposal like this could be implemented. An entire antiobesity bureaucracy would have to be set up. The kids who were plucked from their homes might be sent to junior fat farms where they would not only be subjected to a diet of tofu, whole grains and heirloom tomatoes, but required to walk, run and play with one another for hours at a time without the support of electronic media or gadgets of any kind. Parents would undergo a re-education regime: Good-bye to Big Gulps, pizza buffets and all-you-can-eat orders of baby back ribs. Forced marches would be conducted through local farmers markets and Quality Time Police (QTP) would show up, unannounced, to make sure that every household took the time to have dinner together most nights of the week. Absurd as these notions are, they do nothing to diminish the hope many of us share that government might somehow intervene to make seemingly intractable
situations better. This is the desperate strain in Ludwig and Murtagh’s proposal. At the root of the American idea of freedom is the rationalist belief that people can be trusted to act with enlightened self-interest. In his book Democracy in America, written in the 1830s, Alexis de Tocqueville observed that Americans, “are fond of explaining almost all the actions of their lives by the principle of interest rightly understood; they show with complacency how an enlightened regard for themselves constantly prompts them to assist each other, and inclines them willingly to sacrifice a portion of their time and property to the welfare of the state.” But what happens if peoples’ “regard for themselves” gets a little warped and they start doing things that not only seem counter-productive, but downright selfdestructive? We want the government to intervene. This is why we have schools — and why we’re so frustrated with their performance. If we wanted our schools only to teach kids the essentials of reading, writing and arithmetic, there’d be no problem. But we require more than that. We want schools to act as surrogate parents for kids whose actual parents are either unwilling or unable to impart the sense of enlightened self-interest necessary for someone to become a contributing member of society. School is viewed as the last chance that so-called civil society has of reaching an increasing number of kids who are otherwise at risk of being alienated and disenfranchised. Indeed, many kids count on school not just for learning but their daily bread, eating not one, but two meals there a day. Unfortunately, much of what’s in those meals also contributes to — you guessed it — obesity. It’s desperate to think that government can instill values in people without a larger cultural context to reinforce them. But how else are you going to stem a tide of obesity in a society where bigger is better, more is good and impatience is a virtue? If this kind of social engineering could actually work, it might be worth considering. The trouble is, things rarely turn out they way bureaucrats want them to. History is nothing if not a trail of unintended consequences. So while we fret over our population’s billowing waistline and what it costs us in healthcare, lost productivity, and depressed self esteem, we go on doing whatever we damn well please — because we feel like it. It’s easy to dismiss a proposal like Ludwig and Murtagh’s. You can call it meddlesome or, worse, plain stupid. But this is America, after all, where the freedom to be stupid is the most basic freedom of them all.
It’s desperate to think that government can instill values in people without a larger cultural context ...
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by Wayne Bertsch
HAIKU NEWS by Jim Poyser
China soooo doesn’t want Obama to, like, talk to Dalai Lama debt ceiling debate should be a reality television show this game of chicken just might result in the sky falling on us all GOP attempt to stop phase out of old style light bulbs fails; they’re dim! Rupert Murdoch and his News Corp. starting to look much like Bart Simpson new charges against Duke Energy suggests coal is giving us gas global forum on whales ends up with pro-whaling countries being dicks Clemens trial is declared a mistrial because everyone’s on drugs Netflix bifurcates in attempt to lure old schools to the Internet men of a certain age are just not watching Men of a Certain Age
GOT ME ALL TWITTERED!
Follow @jimpoyser on Twitter for more Haiku News.
THUMBSUP THUMBSDOWN FIERCE FEMALE FUTBOLLERS
Thumbs up for a gut-wrenching U.S. defeat in the final game of the Women’s World Cup? Hell yes! And it’s not just sympathy for a traumatized Japan, either. The World Cup is awesome no matter who wins — it’s the best of the best. We say thumbs up to all those women who engaged in the epic battle that was the 2011 final. They fought for 120 minutes straight with barely 15 minutes to rest. They kept us on the edge of our seats. They scored amazing goals. They played tough. They embodied the true meaning of the beautiful game. And for our humble, corn-covered state to have members of our tribe — Lauren Cheney and Lori Lindsey — occupy two of the 21 places on that U.S. National Team…Well, that’s something truly special. Ladies, we salute you!
SHINING THE LIGHT ON DUKE
With accusations of cronyism and mismanagement running rampant, the story of Duke Energy’s coal gasification project is gaining the drama it needs to launch it beyond the esoteric world of utility regulation and into an arena where the lackadaisical and disinterested general public can engage. Now the onus falls on Duke to make the case to the Indiana Regulatory Commission that all the drama is just a big misunderstanding, that charging Hoosier consumers upfront for cost overruns totaling about 50 percent of the original project price tag is indeed the prudent and correct course of action. Kudos to Star reporter John Russell for uncovering questionable communication between Duke’s people and former members of IURC, and for continuing to follow the story with dogged determination. We’ll stay tuned.
The pressures of leaner financial times are evident by looking at the funding plan for United Way of Central Indiana. No question, the $32.2 million set for distribution in fiscal year 2011, which began in July, will help the 106 local organizations in line for funding. But overall agency services investments are down 3.6 percent from 2010 and United Way cut its own operating expenses by 6.2 percent. No use wringing our hands over our empty pocket, though. The city needs mentors, coaches, and food pantry stockers... Visit http://helpindyonline.com/volunteer and get involved!
THOUGHT BITE By Andy Jacobs Jr. Super(ficial) Sarah Palin, in love with cross hair gun violence, is back to her old Gabby Giffords metaphor to urge no-nothings in congress to press on in their crusade to cause financial chaos for America. She told them, “Don’t retreat; reload.”
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news Meltdown in Naptown Extreme heat wave hits Indy
BY R E BE CCA T O W N S E N D R TOW N S E N D @N U V O . N E T
fforts to respond to the varied and complex consequences of humaninfluenced climate change may be locked in long-term political quagmire. At the local level, though, the equation is simpler: It’s a matter of life and death. In Indiana’s capital city, human activities such as deforestation and development — the very endeavors that created the city, really — fashioned a hot spot right in the center of the state. In effect, they’ve changed the climate. And, along with this increased temperature pressure, the city must cope with higher densities of vulnerable populations, most notably people without air conditioning. Though tornadoes may be the top cause of weather-related deaths this year, extreme heat events are typically the no. 1 cause in North America, according to Daniel Johnson, an assistant professor of geography at IUPUI, the Center for Urban Health and Center for Health Geographics. Each year, Indianapolis experiences an average of three deaths directly attributed to heat, but experts say this number is underreported because deaths attributed to cardiovascular or respiratory conditions may have been inflamed to fatal levels by high temperatures. The pressures are at times much more marked, though, and widespread death occurs, Johnson told an audience gathered at the 2011 Indiana Environmental Health Summit earlier this summer. Examples he offered included an estimated 600 heat-related deaths in Chicago in the summer of 1995 and 181 deaths in Philadelphia in 1993. Also, heat, coupled with the effects of heat-related wild fires, was linked to 56,000 deaths in Russia last year, he said. More deaths are noted in areas with higher surface temperature, he said. In Indianapolis, Johnson works with emergency management and the Indianapolis Health
Department to use mapping tools to locate areas of special concern. Researchers layer various types of information to develop strategies to combat heat-related emergencies. “This is a good slide to show to anthropogenic climate change skeptics,” Johnson said at the environmental summit, displaying a map of land surface temperature in Indiana that reflects dramatic differences between urban and rural surface temperatures as captured by NASA’s MODIS, or Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer, satellite. [See image.] “Through changes we’ve made to our environment, we’ve changed the urban climate in these locations — this more or less can’t be denied.”
Local averages misleading
Average temperatures taken across the region may not reflect the magnified intensity experienced in what experts call urban heat islands. The regional forecast may, for instance, peg Indianapolis at 95, Shelbyville at 93, Terre Haute at 95 and Columbus at 92. Likewise, intensity of summer heat does not average a certain number of degrees hotter with each new acre of asphalt sprawling beyond the urban core. Data compiled by the Indiana State Climate office underscore the ongoing variability of average temperature trends. When the heat index hits 105 or higher, the National Weather Service typically issues heat advisories or warnings. In the past two decades, the number of days crossing into this threshold of extreme heat range from a high of eight in 1990 to none in 2008. Last year, five days crossed over to that level. So far this year, at least two days have already hit that mark. Indiana State Climatologist Dev Niyogi explained urban heat island effects are well documented and “highly localized” phenomena measured and experienced at a micro level. By honing the MODIS data into a tighter scale, Johnson’s mapping exercises reveal how these variations are expressed across different areas of the city. The maps reveal what Johnson called “dramatic changes” in the distribution of urban heat islands in the past three decades and their relationship to vulnerable populations across the city between 1990 and 2000. Johnson’s team is waiting for the U.S. Census Bureau to release
Manic Panic: Your enviroPANIQuiz for the week by Jim Poyser
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detailed elements of the recent decennial census, which will enable researchers to understand recent population shifts and better assess the city’s current state of vulnerability. Their definition of vulnerability includes socio-economic factors that influence a person’s potential to access air conditioning in addition to features of the natural landscape such as percent of tree cover. “We have seen the heat island become more dispersed which is not necessarily a good thing because with urban sprawl services are more thinly spread and the effects of mitigation strategies are diluted,” Johnson told NUVO. “Additionally, we have seen some changes in the social vulnerability and its spatial distribution. This, in coincidence with the dispersed urban health effects, can lead to different levels of vulnerability within Indianapolis.” Mapping vulnerability helps local health officials better implement heat-mitigation strategies, such as where they might introduce cooling centers and employ educational campaigns about the health hazards associated with extreme heat. “High social risk areas usually have low tree cover,” Johnson said. Urban heat islands, which can run more than five degrees hotter than surrounding rural regions during the day, retain their heat when the sun goes down. In the evening, the difference can run as high as 22 degrees, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Though urban heat islands are experienced on a micro-scale, with dramatic variations across a city’s different neighborhoods, the implications of urban climate change present issues of much broader interest. In addition to his position as state climatologist, Dev Niyogi is also an associate professor at Purdue University, specializing in land use, land cover change and its affect on weather and climate. His recent research concerns the effects of urban landscapes on thunderstorm distribution. A study published by the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, in which Niyogi was lead author, found “that more than 60 percent of storms changed structure over the Indianapolis area as compared with only 25 percent over the rural regions.” This finding relates to earlier findings that “the distribution of urban area and anthropogenic Surplus means bonus for state employees by Megan Banta Legal cost of bad laws pass to taxpayers by Sarah Seward
These satellite images demonstrate the undeniable effects urban environments have surface temperatures.
heating could greatly influence the distribution and amount of regional rainfall” ultimately affecting the variability of precipitation around urban areas. Some studies have suggested that urban splitting of storm systems may reduce precipitation in large cities and increase storm intensity downwind. Climate, Niyogi told NUVO, is like politics in that it is local and heavily influenced by the features in your backyard. Local environment influences everything from residents’ general comfort to air quality, heating and cooling expenses and the severity of drought, he said. Currently, Niyogi said, researchers are engaged in identifying risk assessment tools to help people devise the most effective decision-making tools in response to behavior of the local climate. Other topics of research exploring climate-change mitigation strategies include studies of urban tree cover, reforestation strategies and green roofing design. Macro weather pressures such as thunderstorms are still natural and uncontrolled phenomena. Niyogi likens them to a hammer, while climate changes linked to human influence are more like a chisel: “While we can’t control the hammer, the placement of the chisel is in our hands, at times, through local planning.”
Tiger troubles under the Big Top by Rebecca Townsend
The experienced folks at Wishard Hospital devised the following cheat sheet to help people gauge the severity of heat-related medical issues.
Level of concern: Minor Symptoms: Painful cramps, especially in the legs; flushed, moist skin; mild fever (usually less than 102 degrees) and heavy sweating. Response: Firm pressure, gentle massage, rest and re-hydration.
Level of concern: Moderate Symptoms: Muscle cramps; pale, moist skin; fever over 102 degrees; nausea; vomiting; diarrhea; headache; fatigue; weakness; anxiety; faint feeling; and heavy sweating. Response: Get out of the sun, lie down and loosen clothing, apply a cool, wet cloth to the head, move to an air conditioned room.
Level of concern: Severe — This can be fatal Symptoms: Hot, dry skin; fever over 104 degrees, a rapid heart rate, possible unconsciousness, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, headache and fatigue. Response: Emergency medical assistance is vital. Either take the victim to a hospital immediately or call for assistance; a delay can be fatal. Move victims to a cool bath or apply cool water to the body until help arrives.
Published! She Wrote!
Library spotlights women authors
BY M I CH A E L D A B N E Y E D I T O RS @N U V O . N E T
n a recent Saturday morning, a visitor to the Special Collections Room on the sixth floor of the Central Library downtown stared into a glass display case containing part of a woman writers’ exhibit that opened early this year. “I didn’t know that,” she said, pointing to the work of writer Catherine Moore, whom the exhibit says “paved the way for other female writers of speculative fiction.” Moore, who wrote under the pseudonym C.L. Moore, and 23 other female writers make up the Indianapolis-Marion County Public Library’s exhibit, Published! She Wrote! The small yet impressive exhibit showcases the mostly unheralded works of women who blazed trails, from Moore and Janet Flanner, to Barb Shoup, director of the Writers’ Center of Indiana, and poet Mari Evans. The goal of the exhibit is to show that female writers with local connections may not be as nationally recognized as James Whitcomb Riley, Meredith Nicholson, Booth Tarkington and Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., the four iconic male authors in the 20th Century, but that they still had serious writing chops.
Searching for the Big 4
The exhibit started as an idea in early 2010, said librarian Chris Marshall, the team leader of the Special Collections Room who spearheaded the research for the exhibit. “I said, ‘Who are the Big 4 women writers?’ We have people (in the area) who didn’t know who they were. And so this was a perfect idea for us,” he said. With support from the IndianapolisMarion County Public Library Foundation through a gift from the Christel DeHaan Family Foundation, the team researched and built the women writers collection. “We featured only 24 (writers) from the list of 300 we started with,” Marshall said. “We looked for women who were dedicated to writing as a career.” As with most areas in the public library, the Special Collections Room is quiet and respectful, and its atmosphere is enhanced by the panoramic view of downtown through floor-to-ceiling windows. There is ample seating and desk space for reading, research or just introspection. The exhibit is contained in four cabinets and two glass display cases. All the books and other materials are old and, while all are now part of the library’s permanent collection, none are available for loan. “It will stay here and will be available for research [once the exhibit closes early next year],” Marshall said. But “some of the books are really fragile. It’s why the room has temperature and humidity controls.” To answer question of who were the Big 4 female writers, the researchers started with four criteria – A), she had to be dead,
PHOTO BY LAURA MCPHEE
Central Library’s exhibit features numerous female authors, including Janet Flanner. See next page for an in-depth story on Fla nner.
as were the Big 4 male authors; B), she had to have at least 10 books; C), she had to have gained the national recognition of critics and the public by way of literary awards or other national influence; and D), she had to be born, raised or educated in Indianapolis, or had spent a significant amount of time in Indianapolis. While the end result did not strictly follow those guidelines, the Big 4 named by the library were Janet Flanner, Mabel Leigh Hunt, Jeannette Covert Nolan and Augusta Stevenson.
“We looked for women who were dedicated to writing as a career.” — librarian Chris Marshall
Janet Flanner (1892-1978) was born in Indianapolis to embalmer Frank Flanner and Mary Ellen Hockett Buchanan – Flanner’s father founded Flanner and Buchanan funeral home business – but gained international renown as the Paris correspondent for The New Yorker magazine from 1925 until her retirement in 1975. She published only one novel but covered many of the people and events that shaped the middle half of the 20th Century. She wrote under the pen name Genêt, and two volumes of her writing – Paris Journal, 1944-1965 and Paris Journal, 1965-1971 – are part of the collection, alongside works by her sister, poet June Hildegard Flanner. [For more on Flanner see page 14.] Mabel Leigh Hunt was born to prominent Quaker parents in Coatesville in 1892
and later lived and worked in Indianapolis. She focused on family relationships and biographies, but also touched on Quaker themes. Her first book, Lucinda, A Little Girl of 1860, published in 1934, was based on her mother’s Quaker childhood. At the time of her death in 1971, Hunt had written more than 30 books and short stories, including Better Known as Johnny Appleseed (1950), which was a Newbery Honor recipient in 1951. Jeannette Covert Nolan was born and educated in Evansville and later lived in Indianapolis. She was the author of numerous children’s books, especially dealing with American history. Her titles include: Spy for the Confederacy: Rose O’Neal Greenhow, O. Henry – The Story of William Sydney Porter , The Story of Ulysses S. Grant , The Story of Joan of Arc and Andrew Jackson. Nolan also wrote some mysteries for adults. Born in 1897, she died in 1974. Stevenson, who taught in the Indianapolis Public Schools, was born in 1869 and, at the time of her death in 1976, was the author of more than 400 books. She wrote the internationally known series, Childhood of Famous Americans. Hardback copies of Abe Lincoln: Frontier Boy and George Washington: Young Leader are part of the exhibit. She also wrote about Paul Revere, Clara Barton, Buffalo Bill and Sitting Bull.
Origins of “I Love Lucy”
Being prolific doesn’t necessarily mean being well known today. “I knew nothing of C.L. Moore. I had never heard of her but she was quite important for her time, which was the 1930s and 40s,” Marshall said. She was one of the first female writers of science fiction or fantasy. “She figured she’d get read more if people didn’t think she was a woman,” Marshall said. Her first paid story, Shambleau, appeared in Weird Tales magazine in 1933 under her pen name. Another aspect of the exhibit is that not
all of the authors are deceased and not all wrote books. Toledo, Ohio, native Mari Evans, best known as a poet, taught African-American literature at Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis starting in the late 1960s. Among her notable works was I Am a Black Woman, published in 1970. As a member of the Black Arts Movement, her poetry sought to “spread the message of black cultural, psychological and economical liberation.” Indianapolis native Kathryn Lasky, who was born in 1944, is a prolific author of children’s and young adult books. Her Ga’Hoole trilogy was the basis for last year’s animated film, Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole. She also authored a series of Royal Diaries books, which are fictional accounts of the childhoods of historical women, including Mary, Queen of Scots, Marie Antoinette of France and Princess Jahanara of Japan. One book on Elizabeth I of England was the basis for a 2000 television movie. Madelyn Pugh Davis graduated from Shortridge High School in 1938, two years before fellow Shortridge grad Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. “She was the one, with Bob Carroll, Jr., who came up with the original vaudeville act for Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz,” Marshall said. On television, it became the classic, I Love Lucy. Though she and Carroll wrote hundreds of television programs for numerous TV shows – they served as executive producers for seven years on the long-running TV series Alice – Davis’ association with Lucy lasted for four decades. She died on April 20 at the age of 90. WHAT: Published! She Wrote! WHEN: Through 2011 WHERE: Central Library 40 E. St. Clair St. INFO: 275-4100, www.impcl.org/central HOW MUCH: FREE
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Janet Flanner’s Letters from Paris by Laura McPhee • email@example.com
n the first decades of the last century, Indianapolis was rivaled by few other American cities in terms of literary productivity and achievement. Writer Booth Tarkington is the most well-known author of the era and for good reason. Creator of the literary classics The Magnificent Ambersons and Alice Adams, among Tarkington’s litany of successes is the honor of being the first writer to win the Pulitzer Prize for fiction twice, an accomplishment since achieved by two more writers—William Faulkner and John Updike. Tarkington was rivaled in popularity only by Indiana author Gene Stratton Porter at the time. The publication of Freckles (1904), A Girl of the Limberlost (1909), and Laddie (1913) were but a few in a string of popular books that kept Indiana authors on the best-seller lists year after year. Poet James Whitcomb Riley was already an American institution by his death in 1916, and novelists such as Meredith Nicholson (The House of a Thousand Candles) and Lew Wallace (Ben Hur) were household names as well. Growing up in Indianapolis among all of these influential and successful writers was a young woman by the name of Janet Flanner who, writing for The New Yorker under the pen name Genêt, would go on to become one of the most influential writers of the 20th century.
An artistic upbringing
Janet Flanner was not quite seven years old when her family moved from their home at 14th and Delaware Streets to the edges of a growing Indianapolis in 1899. Her father, Frank Flanner, was making quite a name for himself, along with his partner and brother-in-law Charles Buchanan, operating the city’s most successful funeral business. The 10-acres of land purchased on North Meridian Street was a cherry orchard at the time, and the Flanner’s built a large country home near what is now known as 40th Street. While they were one of the first upwardly mobile families
a room to a man of his color, Frank to move so far north, the trend continued Flanner picked Washington up at the for several decades and eventually the area became home to Tarkington, the Vonnegut train station and brought him home to stay with his family, a move that resulted family, and most of Indianapolis’ wealthiin quite a bit of social stigma for the est residents. Flanners and a lasting memory for the Like many families of their class, the then four-year old Janet. Flanners had an appreciation for the The Flanner business and family arts that dominated the education of enjoyed great success for many years Janet and her sisters Marie, who would become a pianist, and Hildegarde, a poet that characterized Janet’s upbringing. When Frank took his wife and daughters of some renown by the time of her death for an extended tour of Europe in 1909, in 1987. Janet had just graduated from Tudor Hall It was Janet’s mother, Mary, who a few months earlier, and the 17-year old instilled a love of the arts in her daughters. was eager to explore all that Europe had An actress and poet herself, Mrs. Flanner frequently made headlines for her dramatic to offer. readings and literary gatherings, which often featured her daughters in as many Catalyst for change roles as she could find suitable. While the year spent in Europe was, While Mary and the girls concentrated by all accounts, an enjoyable one for the on art, Frank Flanner exercised a more Flanner family, the trip was cut short by civic-minded commitment to the city, a bad business investment that halted particularly in the family’s cash terms of improvflow and required ing the conditions Frank to return of the city’s Negro home immediatepopulation. His ly. A few months donation of land later, Flanner and buildings would commit suifor a settlement cide without ever aimed at improvfully revealing the ing job skills and extent of his busiproviding serness troubles to vices to the poorhis wife. est residents of Her father’s Indianapolis was death acted as the the first of its kind first major catalyst in Indiana and for Janet to leave still exists as the Indianapolis, Flanner House on and in the fall of the near Westside. October 1912, she So thorough began her studies was Flanner’s at the University commitment of Chicago as an to diminishEnglish major. ing bigotry in Academic life didn’t Indianapolis, suit her, however, that when Booker and she left college T. Washington a few years later visited the city without graduating. in 1896, and After a failed —William Shawn, Editor, no downtown job at a girl’s The New Yorker, 1978 hotel would rent reformatory in
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“She was an Indiana optimist perched in a small, cluttered room on the top floor of the Hôtel Continental in Paris, and when she looked down over her adored city she saw, even at the most unlikely moments, reason to hope.”
Pennsylvania brought Janet back to Indianapolis in 1916, she was given a job writing for the Indianapolis Star as its first female and first arts reporter. Her bylined column first appeared as “Excursions and Impressions in the Field of Art” and included reviews on everything from vaudeville and burlesque shows to books of poetry and literary criticism. Flanner is also credited as being one of the first newspaper writers to review films. After getting a raise from $25 to $30 weekly in 1916, she began writing a new column, “Comments on the Screen” for the Indianapolis Star which reported on a burgeoning film industry and Hollywood culture that was making its way to Indianapolis via one of the country’s most luxurious film palaces, the Circle Theater. While she was earning her living as writer in Indianapolis by the time she was 25, Flanner was eager to leave the Midwest behind and test her literary skills in bigger, brighter cities. A short-lived marriage to college friend Lane Rehm provided the perfect opportunity. In 1918, the young couple moved to New York taking a small apartment in Greenwich Village where Flanner planned to embark whole-heartedly on a literary career.
New York state of mind
While she had earned a solid reputation as a newspaper writer from her time at the Indianapolis Star, the experience failed to earn her much income or respect in New York. Initially, the young writer took freelance jobs to supplement her income and keep her byline in the papers. She worked on a few stories and manuscripts, but found little success until meeting painter Neysa McMain, who quickly became a close friend and mentor. McMain was from Quincy, Ill. but had already established a reputation as a New York bohemian artist by the time Flanner arrived in the city. It was in McMain’s studio where she first met Dorothy Parker just after the conclusion of World War I.
Flanner was impressed with Parker’s litLetters from Paris erary gatherings and friends at the famed Correspondents in European capitals table at the Algonquin Hotel. Flanner, in were standard for magazines and newspaturn, impressed Parker with her quick and pers at the time, particularly in Paris. But sardonic wit, but was never entirely comthis magazine was to be called The New fortable with this New York set of friends. Yorker and its publisher, Harold Ross, was In part, her reticence was based on looking for a particular kind of writing insecurity. She had only begun to try her that would set his magazine apart from hand at fiction, the newspaper work was his competitors. slow and paid little, and her marriage was He wanted, according to his wife, quickly coming to an end. “anecdotal and incidental stuff on places Flanner herself left little record of her familiar to Americans and on people personal life separate from her published of note whether they are Americans or columns and little is known about her internationally prominent—dope on marriage or subsequent divorce. What is fields of the arts and little on fashions, clear, however, is that she ended the maralthough he does not want the latter riage after meeting and falling in love with treated technically; there should be lots another Midwest of chat about transplant to New people seen York, Solita Solano. about and in it all Solano was he wants a defialready an estabnite personality lished journalist injected.” when the women Flanner took met in 1918. When the job, 1,000 she was assigned words every other a one-year stint week for $35 per in Constantinople letter, the first of by National which appeared Geographic in 1921 in the October 10, Flanner sold most 1925 issue. Ross of her belongings, called the column —Janet Flanner, 60 Minutes,1973 quit her freelance simply, Letters jobs, and climbed from Paris, and on board the ship ran it under the with Solano for a new life abroad. byline of Genêt. The New Yorker continued to run the column until Flanner An American in Paris retired in 1975. In 1922, McMain’s Portrait of Janet Writing about the American newspaper Flanner appeared in a Town & Country men and women who flocked to Paris durmagazine feature about the artist. Despite ing the 1920s and subsequently made a the socialite pose, elegant gown and prop living writing about it for the folks back book, the caption describes her as “an home, Ronald Weber notes in News of Paris Indianapolis newspaper woman.” that Flanner’s dispatches were the superior The same month, Flanner and Solano of the lot. finished their time in Constantinople and “For nearly fifty years Paris letters were arrived in Paris. The women settled into a both the staple commodity of her lucraroom in a small hotel in St-Germain-destive writing career and a relaxed, comPres where they continued to live for the monplace form she elevated to stylish next 16 years. higher journalism. Both women quickly got busy writing in their new city. In 1924, Solano published Literary legacy her first novel, The Uncertain Feast, and At the urging of her editors, Flanner two more books in the trilogy being pubpublished her work from the New Yorker lished over the following two years. in a series of “Paris Journals” beginning in Solano’s novel was well-received. In the 1940s and continuing until her death 1924, the Paris Tribune listed her as one in 1978. The books have been reissued of the “highly gifted American writers who several times and remain as relevant and live in France” and praised her prose as respected today as they did when she first that of a “poet in crisis.” began publishing in 1925. Flanner’s first novel, The Cubicle City, Covering all things Parisian, from art, was finished the same year, but not pubtheater, literature, politics and popular lished until 1926. And while she was quite culture, the Letters also chronicle World thrilled at the time, she had already discovWar II, including Flanner’s three-part ered fiction was not her forté. essay on Hitler, lengthy reporting from “Writing fiction is not my gift,” she the Nuremburg Trials and a host of other would tell a reporter years later. “Writing is political events that still resonate. my gift. But not writing fiction.” “Flanner’s dissection of the studentThe writing assignment that would led demonstrations of 1968 should be change Flanner’s life and cement her literrequired reading in context of the street ary reputation came her way in 1925, the opposition to Jacques Chirac’s ill-fated year between the novel’s completion and proposal last fall to reform the work conits publication. tracts of new employees,” said the Times As a favor, Flanner agreed to help the review of the Paris Letters anthology while husband of a college friend who was recommending the set as the mother of all launching a new magazine and in destravel journals. “Those protests preceded, perate need of good writers. The wife if not exactly foreshadowing, Nicolas had recalled Flanner’s letters from Paris Sarkosy’s successful succession campaign as being full of detail and color, interestthis spring.” ing narrative and superior intellect, and Following Flanner’s death in 1978, she recommended Flanner as a possible William Shawn, editor of The New Yorker, columnist. praised both her storytelling and substantive style in a manner fitting for a young
“How could I look back over the 1920s and not say they were lots of fun? Believe me, I had lots of fun.”
IMAGE COURTESY OF LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, PRINTS AND PHOTOGRAPHS DIVISION
Janet Flanner poses at the famed Deux Magots cafe on the Left Bank with friend and fellow war correspondent Ernest Hemingway for a 1945 ‘Life’ magazine feature following the liberation of Paris by Allied troops.
woman born into one of Indiana’s richest literary communities. “Her eye never became jaded, her ardor for what was new and alive never diminished, and her language remained restless. She was a stylist who devoted her style, bedazzling and heady in itself, to the subtle task of conveying the spirit of a subtle people.” And while Paris might have been her adopted hometown, even her longtime editor knew that Janet Flanner never lost her ties to home. “She was an Indiana optimist perched in a small, cluttered room on the top floor of the Hôtel Continental in Paris, and when
she looked down over her adored city she saw, even at the most unlikely moments, reason to hope.”
“Writing fiction is not my gift. Writing is my gift. But not writing fiction.” —Janet Flanner
Janet Flanner: Bibliography The Cubicle City GP Putnam, 1926; So. Illinois University Press, 1974 An American in Paris Simon and Schuster, 1940 Men and Monuments Harper, 1957 Paris Journal, (1944-1965) Atheneum, 1965 Paris Journal, (1965-1971) Atheneum, 1971 Paris Was Yesterday, (1925-1939) Atheneum 1971 London Was Yesterday (1934-1939) Viking, 1975 Janet Flanner’s World: Uncollected Writings (1932-1975); Harcourt, 1979 Darlinghissima: Letters to a Friend Random House, 1985 Genêt: A Biography of Janet Flanner , Brenda Wineapple (1992) 100% RECYCLED PAPER // NUVO // 07.20.11-07.27.11 // cover story
It’s that time of year! August 12 is the deadline to get your 2011/2012 Arts Guide season information to us for possible inclusion in this year’ s Arts Guide. Send your info, along with photos, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Put “Arts Guide” in the subject line.
do or die 23
Only have time to do one thing all week? This is it.
Marion County Fair @ Marion County Fairgrounds
Oranje Peel Party @ Sensu
‘Indulge Your Senses’ at the first of the 2011 Peel Parties. ORANJE season has officially begun! It will be a night of art, music and fun with DJ performances by Rusty, John Larner, and Helicon , a live art exhibit and enter-to-win contests. Enjoy Ketel One drink specials offered all night plus more as you experience a preview of ORANJE 2011. Doors open at 10 p.m. This year marks the 10th anniversary of this must-experience contemporary art and music event. ORANJE 2011 will take place Saturday, Sept. 17 so be sure to mark that date on your social calendar and purchase your $20 ticket in advance! Until then, we’ll see you at the Peel Parties! 225 South Meridian St., www.oranjeindy.com.
20-23 PHOTO BY STEPHEN SIMONETTO
Adam Crockett and Ryan Hickey, Oranje’s founders
If you haven’t been to the Indy Film Fest yet, you should either go right
now or revoke your film fan card. There are five days of screenings and workshops left before the Audience Awardwinning film is announced on Sunday (9:30 p.m.). The closing night event on Saturday (7:30 p.m.) includes a screening of These Amazing Shadows , a documentary look at the National Film Registry, followed by an after-party that will include the announcement of the Grand Jury winner and $1,000 prize purse. More awards will be announced on Sunday along with screenings of shorts and feature films starting at noon. Tickets are $10 for individual screenings; $80 for 10-ticket bundle and $150 for an all access pass. 4000 N. Michigan Road, 923-1331, www.indyfilmfest.org.
World Comedy League Championship @ ComedySportz
Over 200 improvisers from across the globe will take part in the competition for the Meaningless Trophy, awarded to the champion on July 23. There will be matches every night with ComedySportz teams from across the US, as well as Manchester, England, and the newest team from Berlin, Germany. The added level of comedic competition is sure to bring the laughs. Ticket prices and showtimes vary. Don’t miss our feature on this event on nuvo.net. 721 Massachusetts Ave, 951-8499, www. indycomedysportz.com.
Indy Film Fest @ IMA’s Toby Theatre
WED - SAT
One of the largest state and county events will feature racing pigeons, chain saw woodwork, gospel music, llama demonstrations, a dog show, a cheerleading contest, demolition derby, and even a meatless chili contest. The midway will feature multiple rides such as the bouncing, rotating Panda Bear, the swinging Alpine Bobs, the Mega Drop, the Cyclops and the Hammer. Events and times vary; $5 general admission. Runs through July 30. 7300 East Troy Avenue, 353-2444, www.marioncountyfair.org.
48-Hour Film Project @ Big Car
Register now through July 29 for this wild and sleepless weekend. You and a crew (friends, family, whomever) write, shoot, edit and score a movie, in just 48 hours. Think you can do it? Register: www.48hourfilm.com/indianapolis/. Once registered, the 48-hour kickoff is July 29, 6 p.m. at iMOCA in the Murphy Art Center . All participants receive a character, a prop, a line of dialogue and a genre, all to include in their movie. Forty eight hours later, the film must be submitted back at iMOCA. Screenings of the films, announcements of winners, a final screening of winners and awards will be announced in early August. Entry fee is $155. 1043 Virginia Ave. Suite 5/6, www.48hourfilm.com/indianapolis.
Honoring Indy’s baseball history by Rita Kohn Review: Rob Schneider at Crackers by Anna Turner Indiana Author Award winners announced by Bob Helfst
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DK’s Summer Sizzle @ OneAmerica Stage at IRT
The Summer Sizzle Concert Series is a perfect Staycation Treat for all those willing to pay only $10 per ticket to see a variety of acts. From David Hochoy ’s dramatic piece comSUBMITTED PHOTO plete with his favorite musical theater songs to DK will Sizzle at the IRT this weekend. Cynthia Pratt ’s Elvis Presley-related choreography, there’s something to keep everyone’s interest in this show. Evening performances on Thursday, Friday and Saturday begin at 7 p.m. and Sunday’s matinee begins at 2:30 p.m. 140 W. Washington St., 635-5252, www.dancekal.org.
HART’s Shakespeare on the Canal hits snag by Katelyn Coyne First RCA Dome structure installed by Dan Grossman Go & Do: Your arts weekend, July 22-24 by Jim Poyser
Opening night of the IFF by Stacy Kagiwada
Depression Study Are you feeling low? Have you lost interest in the people and things that used to bring you joy? Do you lack the drive and energy to do the things you would like to do? Are you tired of feeling depressed and anxious? If you answered YES to any of the questions above, you may be eligible to take part in a study for depression being conducted by the Indiana University School of Medicine Adult Psychiatry Clinic. We are looking for individuals between the ages of 21 and 60 who are either suffering from depression with anxiety and are not currently on any medications for depression and anxiety. This study has 9 visits over about 12 weeks and involves treatment with the medication (quetiapine, also known as Seroquel XR®) and brain scans (MRI). All study procedures and study medication are provided to subjects free of charge. Compensation is up to $200. Taking part in a study is a serious decision. All risks and beneﬁts will be discussed with you so that you can make the decision that’s right for you.
If you are interested, please call
(317) 278-3311. Please leave your name and a phone number at which you can easily be reached.
Baseball history celebrated @ Indianapolis Zoo
Indianapolis’ rich baseball history will be recognized with a new historical marker honoring baseball at Washington Park, the Negro National League , the SUBMITTED PHOTO Indianapolis A.B.Cs, and the Indianapolis Indians. The Negro National League and the The four-part celebration includes the 125th anniversary Washington Baseball Park are honored this week. of professional baseball in Indianapolis. This celebration also marks the location of Washington Baseball Park — Indianapolis’ first major league stadium and recognizing Washington Park as the site of the first Negro National League game, played on May 2, 1920, with the Indianapolis ABCs defeating the Chicago Giants in a doubleheader. 4:30 p.m. Open to public. See nuvo.net for a feature story by Rita Kohn. 1200 West Washington St, 232-2535, www.in.gov/history/index.htm.
Dillinger & Eastside Notables @ Crown Hill
Voted by travel writer Danny Lee as his favorite tour in Midwest Living Magazine’s “Terrific Tours” article (July/August issue), Dillinger & Eastside John Dillinger Notables explores famous gravesites of Crown Hill Cemetery . Crown Hill is the 3rd largest cemetery in the country and is the burial site of numerous famous people such as President Benjamin Harrison, poet James Whitcomb Riley , Colonel Eli Lilly and three U.S. Vice Presidents. This tour covers sections not included in other tours including a stop at bank robber John Dillinger’s grave. A stop at the top of “The Crown” will give participants a view of the sunset with a stunning 360-degree panorama of the city. $5 for adults, $4 for seniors, and $3 for students under 18. 7:30-9:30 p.m. 3400 Boulevard Place, 920-2726, www.crownhillhf.org/calendar.html.
Indy Criterium Cycling Race & Festival @ University Park
Interested in bicycle racing for both adults and children, food truck vendors and the opportunity to support local nonprofit Freewheelin’ Community Bikes ? Head out SUBMITTED PHOTO to the 2nd annual Indy Criterium Cycling Race & Festival kicks off at 9 a.m. with a free bike ride through Crown Hill Cemetery. That’s only the beginning of a day filled with a unique figure-8 race course, prizes, a beer garden and a live DJ. For all those interested in participating in a race, the registration fee is $40 first race, $15 additional races. 325 N. Meridian St., 459-0059, www.indycrit.com
Richard Pflum Poetry Reading @ Bookmamas
Watch and listen as poetry comes alive when Richard Pflum reads his work on July 26 at Bookmamas. Pflum has published two collections of his poetry: A Dream of Salt and A Strange Juxtaposition of Parts . Following the reading there will be an open mic for ambitious audience members. The Richard Pflum reading is part of an on going event called the Irvington Poetry Series. 9 Johnson Ave, 375-3715, www.bookmamas.com.
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FEATURE Citizen Harmon’s bad day
New book about being busted
BY DA V I D H O P P E D H O P P E @N U V O . N E T
im Harmon is the kind of guy who gets involved in the life around him. He says it’s the way he was brought up; it’s what he considers Citizenship 101. Harmon, known throughout the city for his work with architectural salvage and a former Governor’s Arts Award honoree, tells a story about the time he was driving and saw a couple in another car open their door and drop a dirty diaper on the street: “I picked up that diaper and caught up with them, got out and said, ‘C’mon. This is pretty lowlife.’ They apologized and said it stunk. ‘I know,’ I said, ‘it’s been in my car!’” Three years ago, on Race Weekend, Harmon was at the intersection of East St. and Virginia, when a motorist on Harmon’s left cut him off by turning right, almost causing an accident. Harmon describes this incident and what followed in a new book called A Day in the Life of a Very Bad Person . At first glance, A Day in the Life looks like a children’s book. It’s square, with a soft cover adorned with a crayon illustration of a sad face behind bars that looks like it was drawn by a seven year-old. In fact, Harmon, who is over 60, drew the cover image — as well as the rest of the illustrations throughout the book. And while the story that the illustrations accompany is told in a simple, plain-spoken prose that any third grader might understand, A Day in the Life is not really a children’s book, but Harmon’s way of making a point about what he considers the gratuitous abuse of power by local police. Harmon followed the motorist who almost hit him in order, he says in the book, to, “explain how dangerously close they came to crashing back there. We all need to be careful and help each other when we can.”
A day in the pokey
Harmon got out of his car to impart this insight, but the other driver sped off (running a red light, says Harmon) and alerted some nearby cops. When Harmon approached the cops to explain the situation, he suddenly found himself on the wrong side of the law – or, at any rate, local law enforcement. As Harmon tells it in A Day in the Life : “The policeman quietly listened as Tim explained what had happened. Then the policeman said to Tim, ‘Who the god damn fuck are you to tell someone else
Tim Harmon, (above, right) turned a bad day into a book.
they made a mistake?’” This was just the beginning of what would be a very long 22 hours for Tim Harmon. In addition to a torrent of verbal abuse, Harmon was also subjected to being handcuffed and hauled off to the lock-up in a paddy wagon. “You’re completely at their mercy,” says Harmon today about the experience. “One minute you’re walking down the street as if you’re an adult, taking care of your needs, as you have for 60 years. All of a sudden, every right you’ve ever had is taken away from you, and you don’t even know how long you’re [being locked up] for. In my case, you have no idea what you did. There was no explanation.” Harmon was never charged with having committed a crime. “They can drive up and order you into the car, knock you to the ground, handcuff you, put you in a patrol car and keep you for 72 hours,” says Harmon. “I got off lucky with 22 hours.” Presenting his story as if it were a children’s book works, in this case, as a way of evoking the violation of innocence Harmon felt at the hands of IMPD. He wrote the first draft in the first 24 hours after his release from the lock-up. “I don’t know why I wrote it in this style,” he says. “I just wanted to not forget it.” As Harmon related what happened to him to friends and neighbors, he began hearing of other peoples’ run-ins with IMPD and became convinced that shar-
PHOTO BY HANNAH FEHRMAN
ing his story in public was important. “I don’t know that I want to be a poster boy for citizens’ rights or police reform,” says Harmon. “I would like to see some things happen. I don’t care if you’re the mailman or a waitress in a restaurant, you don’t talk to people the way I was talked to.” While Harmon now admits that maybe getting out of his car to approach another motorist might not be the best way of communicating, he stands by his belief that sharing a piece of his mind is an important part of citizenship – and something that shouldn’t be left only to the police. “It’s about everybody working together to make this a livable city. I do take it upon myself to talk to people about trash or running a stop sign, but not at all in what I think is a judgmental way. The police can’t be everywhere and I don’t set myself up as a one-man police force. I’m just a neighbor living in a neighborhood. When people do dangerous things, I think we neighbors need to talk to each other.” Harmon says he thinks the police have become confused about their role in society. “Police have forgotten how to talk to people,” he says. “They were saying, ‘You have no right to tell another person they made a mistake. If you want to tell other people what to do, you need to go to the police academy, like we did.’ That’s just crazy. These aren’t rules we can live together by. I don’t think we can have cities and neighborhoods if every-
“I don’t know why I wrote it in this style. I just wanted to not forget it.”
one minds their own business and we don’t speak to each other.” The irony is that, in A Day in the Life of a very Bad Person , as Harmon is being pushed into the paddy wagon, the officer who has been cursing him says, “You know, when I look at myself in the mirror tonight, I am going to feel really bad for the way I treated you today!” “I don’t know why he chose to say that. I do believe he was really sincere,” Harmon says. “A lot of this story is saying: This is what’s happening on a city street today in Indianapolis, Indiana. We can’t continue treating each other this way.” Tim Harmon will be holding a number of readings around town in support of publication of A Day in the Life of a Very Bad Person. The first reading will be Friday, Aug 5 at the Harrison Center (1505 N. Delaware St.) as part of its regular First Friday activities. For more information go to www.harrisoncenter.org or call 317-396-3886.
A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A VERY BAD PERSON
Written and illustrated by Tim J. Harmon Restoration Press, $15
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REVIEWS Recommended summer reading Local writers, local subjects S T A FF RE P O R T E D I T O RS @N U V O . N E T
NATURE’S STORYTELLER: THE LIFE OF GENE-STRATTON PORTER BY BARBARA OLENYIK MORROW INDIANA HISTORICAL SOCIETY PRESS: $17.95
A half-century before ecology went mainstream, Gene Stratton-Porter decried indifferent destruction of the natural world. Nearly a century before Al Gore made global warming a cause celebe, the Wabash County native warned her readers that denuding the land would cause worrisome changes in the climate. If her work is understood as the product of a bygone era, if she is canonized as a local literary legend and then relegated to a special spot on the bookshelves reserved for Indiana authors, we risk misunderstanding the true scope of Stratton-Porter’s legacy. Certainly the people responsible for conserving and sharing the historic sites maintained in her honor recognize that StrattonPorter called us to action. Now with her book, Nature’s Storyteller: The Life of Gene-Stratton Porter (Indiana Historical Society Press: Indianapolis, 2010), Auburn, Ind.-based writer Barbara Olenyik Morrow offers a chance for the rest of us to hone our appreciation for one of the state’s most popular writers. Written as the seventh installment to the Indiana Historical Society’s youth biography series, Morrow’s 181-page book reads like a story not a weighty dissertation, though its supplementary materials offer a detailed roadmap for further research. Constructed with stitched binding and a pleasing cover featuring a simple portrait of Stratton-Porter crowned by a bird and surrounded by butterflies, the book contains a feast of historical photographs, offering the readers of all ages not just a deeper understanding of the subject, but also of the time and place she occupied. The challenges, for instance, of turn-ofthe-century photography…
Years before cameras were portable, Stratton-Porter pioneered the field of nature photography. Morrow describes field trips burdened with “two or three dozen [glass plates] and often a wagonload of equipment, including four cameras adapted for different types of outdoor work.” These trips were inspired by her visceral passion for nature, not the eccentric whims of wealth. Before her great commercial success, Morrow notes that Stratton-Porter sold family jewelry to feed her photography obsession, allowing images that captured the sentiment of her words to illustrate her work as opposed to the stuffed taxidermy suggestions she rejected from her publisher. Fabulous commercial success followed her early forays into the field. In the 50-year period ending in 1945, just 55 books registered U.S. sales of a million or more copies. Stratton-Porter wrote five of them, “outdistancing,” Morrow notes, even such literary heroes as Twain and Kipling. At the height of her popularity, Stratton-Porter possessed an estimated audience of 50 million with earnings of around $2 million. These statistics underscore, but do not fully illuminate, the spectacular personality responsible for the work. As an independent woman, who, while living — it seems from Morrow’s account — almost entirely apart from her husband remained committed to the ideals of family, and as a woman of faith unconfined to manmade temples and unconcerned with critics, Stratton-Porter lived her life on her own terms. Morrow’s book helps readers far removed from that life discover the many different ways Stratton-Porter’s life and work remains relevant today. The biographer includes an excerpt from a letter her subject sent in 1923 to Indiana Gov. Warren T. McCray detailing the natural bounty springing from her Wildflower Woods property on the shores of Sylvan Lake in Noble County. “The collection is peculiar to Indiana, a unique thing, the like of which is not in existence in any state of the Union,” she wrote. The same, readers of Morrow’s book will appreciate, can be said of Gene StrattonPorter. — Rebecca Townsend
INTERSTATE 69: THE UNFINISHED HISTORY OF THE LAST GREAT AMERICAN HIGHWAY BY MATT DELLINGER SCRIBNER; $26
Even those familiar with the controversy surrounding the proposed extension of Interstate 69 down from Indianapolis south to the Mexican Border are liable to learn something new in this smartly written book. The Indy-born author, Matt Dellinger, combines travelogue, journalism and historical overview to portray the two opposing forces on either side of the I-69 debate. The author rightly spends much of his time with Thomas Tokarski and his wife Sandra. This makes sense because the Tokarski’s property, twenty minutes southwest of Bloomington, IN., would be cut through by the proposed New Terrain section of I-69 running from Bloomington to Evansville. (The Tokarskis have also been instrumental in forming organized oppo-
a&e reviews // 07.20.11-07.27.11 // NUVO // 100% RECYCLED PAPER
sition to the New Terrain section of the proposed interstate). But Dellinger spends a nearly equal amount of time with one of the principal proponents of the new terrain I-69 route: David Graham. Graham is the wealthy, well-connected scion of a prominent Southwestern Indiana family that never benefitted from the advent of the interstate highway system as it was originally conceived. As the book makes clear, Graham’s family would benefit directly from the implementation of the new terrain I-69 (on which construction has already begun). Although this is a damning indictment, which hints at a larger problem with our democratic process as a whole, Dellinger delivers it with sympathy for all involved parties, with journalistic objectivity, and with a certain stylistic flair. — Dan Grossman
lack thereof. After the recent loss of his wife and increasing stress from work, Jack commits murder in his office. The book starts by introducing the characters in the setting of Jack’s trial. From there, Jack recounts a first-person story that invites readers into the mind of a murderer. This thought-provoking thriller deals with the scary reality that a man capable of committing murder may not be so different from the readers themselves. — Emily Thompson MUSIC MADE ME BY RAYMOND LEPPARD LEPPARD LIBRARIES LLC; $35.96
Its Foreword is by His Royal Highness, Charles, Prince of Wales and future king of the U.K (if he manages to outlive his mother, Queen Elizabeth II). It’s all about England and environs, its arts and politics during Raymond Leppard’s lengthy, marked appearance on its stage. But more than that, it’s about the people, famous and obscure, who touched and were touched by the ISO’s present conductor laureate, who, following the death of his dear friend, the Queen “Mum” at 101 in 2002, became a naturalized American citizen. For anyone who’s followed classical music in the 20th century, Music Made Me is a fascinating read. For local readers, I would have preferred a longer, more detailed discussion of Leppard’s Indianapolis years, now 24 and ongoing, a significant chunk of his 83-year life. He appended five pages at the book’s end for that synoptic narrative. — Tom Aldridge TRAVELING WITH FRANK AND KATRINA BY FRANK BASILE IBJ BOOK PUBLISHING; $10
SPIRITUAL SNAKE OIL; FADS & FALLACIES IN POP CULTURE BY CHRIS EDWARDS SEE SHARP PRESS; $11.95
Edwards, an Indianapolis resident, just published this book in July, and it’s a whale of a read for those interested in stripping away the magical thinking of our contemporary world. With incisive — sometimes brutal — wit, Edwards pulls the veil away from such beloved cultural figures as Deepak Chopra, Robert Pirsig (Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance) and Michael Chrichton. He dismantles The Celestine Prophecy and tells the secret behind The Secret: that the book “is just the old Christian prosperity gospel reworked to take the most of the Christianity and references to God out so that the final project appeals to greater number of people.” Edwards will have you prying open your mind, as you trying to stitch your side back together from laughing. — Jim Poyser MIDDLE MAN: A BROKER’S TALE BY JOHN GUY PUBLISHED BY JOHN W. GUY IN ASSOCIATION WITH IBJ BOOK PUBLISHING, $14.99
From the desk of John Guy, the president of a financial planning and investment advisory firm, comes a story about a broker or “middle man” named Jack Chap who flirts with the fine line between sanity and
Traveling with Frank and Katrina is a memoir of gutsy traversing the globe in pursuit of out-of-the-ordinary adventures. The payoff for the reader is a snapshot of places most of us don’t venture to and a lexicon of lessons learned from Basile’s extraordinary style of ferreting out locations, getting there, being there and learning beyond the tour books. Some are cautionary tales from someone who casually throws caution to the winds. Most are pithy in and out rendezvous full of wonderment and delight, particularly of UNESCO designated “World Heritage Sites.” Starting with “Traveling on the Edge,” Basile navigates us through political upheavals and natural disasters that fail to deter him and his wife Katrina from bucking the odds safely to return home to Indianapolis. The following chapters inspire us to search out own longlost relatives, follow in the footsteps of history makers, including presidential libraries, get to know our National Parks and discover what’s right here at home. After visiting 174 countries on all seven continents there’s still more to come, and in Basile’s mantra, “That’s another story.” Await a sequel. But don’t wait to take off on your own. Basile’s resounding message is “travel never gets old or boring… the thrill of adventure and discovery intensifies with each visit to a place we have never been.”. — Rita Kohn For more book revies, see nuvo.net.
6281 N. College Ave.
MUSIC SINATRA SONGBOOK WITH STEVE LIPPIA e
consistently perfect timing. Sound, lighting and scenic design elements each create characters that subtly guide the audience, create suspense and sign-post for what’s to come without ever taking center stage. My one wish for this show: program notes that explain this play as the first in a series of three. Without that, I fear many baffled audience members may pour out of the theater feeling mind-fucked. Expect a cliffhanger ending that leaves you anticipating the end of the world in the beginning of a new theatrical trilogy. — Katelyn Coyne
Marsh Symphony on the Prairie, Gerald Steichen, conductor, July 15-16. Steve Lippia knows how to buy an audience and sell a song in the manner of Frank Sinatra. Opening with the 1953 hit “I’ve Got the World on a String” that began Sinatra’s signature collaboration with arranger Nelson Riddle, Lippia’s pleasant manner and nuanced THE ANDREWS BROTHERS voice make him easy to listen to as an interpreter u of standards and traditional pop music. ISO players, with Gerald Steichen conducting, Actors Theatre of Indiana, The Studio Theatre were having as good a time as the rest of us, at The Carmel Center for the Performing Arts; bringing a rich sound to the through July 24. The familiar songs that seem to Andrews Brothers revealed follow a biographical story its nostalgic heart within its of Sinatra’s life and career. opening moments. As the Providing background to each theatre grew dark, Peggy song, Lippia introduced us to Jones, a staple pin-up girl Sinatra’s particular style across of the 1945 U.S.O. perforhis mid-20th century career as mance circuit (played with part of the “Golden Age of fantastic energy by Mary Pop and the Great American Jayne Raleigh) popped Songbook” and reconnected us onto the stage with a pluck with Sinatra’s iconic presentareminiscent of Lucille Ball. tions of Porter’s “I’ve Got You She asked for a show of Under My Skin,” Sondheim’s hands from the veterans in “Send in the Clowns,” featuring the house. Of all the hands pianist Gary Walters, Rodgers raised, one belonged to a and Hammerstein II’s “I Have veteran of WWII. Ms. Raleigh Dreamed” showcasing the dedicated that evening’s ISO and swing band favorites performance to him, and he “Fly Me to the Moon” and SUBMITTED PHOTO stood to a round of thunder“Saturday Night is the Loneliest ous applause. Unfortunately, Night of the Week” with drumKaren Irwin (left) and Lisa Ermel struggle to save the world in “With A Bang.” this well-intentioned show, mer Steve Hanna keeping the that opened so warmly as beat. Lippia showed us why a love-letter to veterans, Sinatra endures. With lyrics that quickly grew tiresome. Easy, dated jokes and speak from the heart and address our innermost wooden dialogue clumsily propel a predictable, hopes, fears, loves and losses, and tunes that razor-thin plot. The twenty-seven songs in the enter our bones, Sinatra touched what makes play (competently performed) are nearly identical us who we are, as in “My Way” and pinpointing to one another. The actors are committed and consequences of choices we make as in “Let Me purposeful, but cannot elevate this hackneyed Try Again.” In a most unusual closing, Lippia and script — no matter how noble its intent. — Harry the ISO gifted with two encores. The applause Watermeier kept coming. —Rita Kohn
WITH A BANG e
DOGZPLOT LITERATURE PARTY r
Phoenix Theatre; directed by Bryan Fonseca; through Aug. 14. With a Bang is a new sci-fi comedy that forecasts the apocalypse as it blends mystery and humor with a lot blood. Playwright Pete McElligott demonstrates his hearty wit with humor and plot devices reminiscent of Kevin Smith’s Dogma. As the first part of a trilogy to unfold at the Phoenix in the next two years, the play intentionally leaves its audience with many unanswered questions. While the plot takes a few difficult jumps toward the end adding confusion to an already complicated story, this two and a half hour play flashes by. An added treat, the highly quotable script offers a lot to mull over with one-liners that keep you chuckling well into your night. Leading actors, Nick Carpenter and Lisa Ermel, give enjoyable high-energy performances. But the real stand-outs of this show are Matthew Van Oss and Ben Rose, whose physical gags and broad comedy have
Big Car Service Center; July 18. Big Car’s new community space sits next to Don’s Guns. Maybe that’s why this fundraiser of local author readings for youth literacy organization Second Story was shot through with firearm references. Fourteen authors read “shotgun style,” in quick succession. Bryan Furuness wanted to be a bullet in a gun barrel. Micah Ling read Fletcher Christian’s 18th-century account of shooting an albatross. Authors literally sweated their readings. The former Firestone car care center’s AC was overwhelmed by the heat…or perhaps, by such steamy stuff as Barry Graham’s take on his Monica Lewinsky fixation and Roxane Gay’s description of two bulimics’ bathroom quickie. Humorous highlights included Jessica Dyer’s ode to “My Uterus” and Layne Ransom’s “Are You There, God? It’s Me, Facebook.” Horror arrived via Matt Mullins’ depiction of a freakish picnic accident. Sponsoring organizations nearly outnumbered the authors, an encouraging show of cultural force. — Gary Weir
Entertainment Weekly, “One of the top 10 comics to watch!” Correal has appeared on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” “Late Night with David Letterman,” and “Last Call with Carson Daily.”
Mo Mandel 7/27-7/30
Moshe Kasher 8/3-8/6
REVIEWS 247 S. Meridian St.
Howard Stern show regular voted the “Funniest and Hottest” comedian in America. Finalist on NBC’s Last Comic Standing. You’ve seen her on E! Entertainment, Access Hollywood and Talk Soup.
Geoff Keith 7/27-7/30
Sugar Sammy 8/3-8/6
* Reservation required
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FOOD 14 West
Downtown restaurant disappoints BY N E I L CH A R LE S N CH A RL E S @N U V O . N E T The more expensive a restaurant, the more disappointing it is when it fails to live up to expectations, and a recent visit to 14 West disappointed on many levels. Once upon a time it might have been possible to make the excuse that Indianapolis is a small town and shouldn’t be judged by the lofty standards of, say Chicago or San Francisco. But Indianapolis is now home to
14 West Maryland Indianapolis 317 636-1414 MON-THURS: 11 am-10 pm FRI: 11 am-11 pm SAT: 5 pm-11 pm
FOOD: u ATMOSPHERE: t SERVICE: t
an increasingly sophisticated and educated generation of foodies and seasoned travelers, so restaurants need to hold themselves to ever-escalating levels of quality in order to be taken seriously. Although the interior of 14 West is comfortable enough in a clubby sort of way, there’s not much to distinguish it in this regard, so let’s move on. The kitchen’s focus, we are assured, is on fresh, seasonal and local ingredients wherever possible, prepared simply. The “award-winning” lobster macaroni and cheese (sourced, respectively, from the ocean, Italy and, I’m guessing, Wisconsin) for $15 doesn’t appear to sport a single ingredient nurtured within 200 miles of the Circle City. Regardless of origins, it was a bit of a sad affair: the lobster grainy and stringy, the cheese curdled, the whole thing watery and separated. One also has to speculate as to the origins and age of the fried green tomato(es). There was something uncannily bland about this dish and cookie-cutter in its presentation that had us wondering how long it was since the fruit had departed the vine. For $9 some flavor would have been appropriate. And so to the main courses. One of this establishment’s main attractions has to be its dry-aged beef. As any discerning diner knows, dry-aged meat is the sine-qua-non of the serious beef eater. When quizzed on the subject, our server was emphatic that
No w t h e la rg est b u f f e t se l e c t i o n i n t o w n n!!
PHOTO BY HANNAH FEHRMAN
14 West rests downtown by Circle Centre.
the twelve-ounce, bone-in, Kansas Citystyle New York strip ($40) had been dry aged for 35 days. Such ageing should render the meat supremely tender and almost devoid of excess blood. Which is why it came as something of a surprise when our chosen steak required the serious attention of a serrated knife and bled so copiously onto the plate when cut that I was tempted to take its pulse and look for vital signs. Our other dish, a delicious-looking (on paper, at least) rack of lamb for $36 had
been sourced locally in Australia, transported halfway around the world then carelessly burnt on the grill to an unnecessary degree. Now I know the meaning of carbon footprint. By contrast, the quinoa upon which it rested was crunchily undercooked. The dessert was by all accounts housemade, consisting of a flourless chocolate confection. The flavor was somewhat agreeable, but it did nothing to mitigate the experience of the rest of the meal.
Patrick’s Kitchen, Zionsville: Sun King A Few More Hops, Three Floyds Dreadnaught, Bloomington Brewing Company Java Porter, Upland Double Dragonfly.
NUVO stopped at Beef House Restaurant in Covington. They serve Upland in bottles.
BY RITA KOHN
Sun King Brewing Co., 6 p.m., releasing Cream Dream IV: A New Hop, an easy-drinking Imperial IPA with a serious hop punch and 10% alcohol-byvolume based on Sunlight Cream Ale’s malt profile. Food for purchase by My Lunch Box; Ray Cashman performs.
Voted the BEST INDIAN RESTAURANT by NUVO readers!
Daily Lunch Buffet: 11am-2:30 pm Dinner: Mon-Thurs. 5-10 pm, Fri. 5:00-10 pm Sat. 2:30-10 pm, Sun. 2:30-9:30 pm
Tomlinson Tap Room, Indy Third Thursday Brewery Feature. $25. 5:30-8:30 p.m.
Sunday & Daily Lunch Buffet: 11:30am-2:30 pm Dinner: Mon-Fri. 5-10 pm, Sat. 2:30-10 pm Sun. 2:30-9:30 pm
One Coupon Per Table. Not Valid With Any Other Offer. Only valid on menu order.
One Coupon Per Table. Dine In Only. Not Valid With Any Other Offer
Carry out or Dine In
Daily lunch buffet
Buy one dinner entree & get the 2nd entree
Up to $10.00. Dine In Only. Not Valid With Any Other Offer Expires 8/03/11
Catering for private parties! Call for carryout! | THE SPOT for vegan and vegetable dishes! (non-veggie too!) Come in for our Sunday dinner buffet! | Up to 250 people banquet hall for parties or conferences
a&e // 07.20.11-07.27.11 // NUVO // 100% RECYCLED PAPER
JULY 22 BEER TASTINGS
Norma’s Fine Wines. 6-8 p.m. Vine and Table, Carmel, 3-7 p.m. Crown Liquors, Downtown Indy. 3-7 p.m.; Carmel, Fishers, US 31 & Shelby, &106th & Michigan. 4-7 p.m. 21st Amendment, Broad Ripple. 5 p.m.
Kahn’s North Willow 2342, 6-8 p.m. 1st annual HOPPY BIRTHDAY features tasting and talking about 20-25 interestingly hopped beers. RSVP at 317-228-9463.
IN THE NEWS
Kevin Matalucci, Broad Ripple Brewpub’s long-time brewer and his wife Tracy are opening Twenty Tap at the former site of Northside News, at 54th and College. They’ll rotate 20 Indiana craft beers on tap and chef Rob Coat will create locally sourced menu items unique to Twenty Tap. Watch for an August start up date and expect a very different ambiance. Andrew Meyer and Chris Hoyt are homebrewers planning a brewery. Two Deep expects to open early 2012 in the former Chateau Thomas Winery Building at 501 Madison Ave. Upland Lambics are back. Reserve your bottle of kiwi, persimmon or raspberry and learn about Belgian-style sour ales at www.uplandbeer.com. Upland currently produces eight styles of fruited sour ales including the “experimental” Dantalion Dark Wild Ale. Sun King’s Popcorn Pilsner featured at the 2011 Indy Film Fest opening party.
Black Swan Brewpub in Plainfield has co-owner and head brewer DJ McCallister’s house beers including 90 Schilling Scottish Ale, Double-Hopped Pale Ale Robust Porter and Hefeweizen. Co-owner Erin McCalister reports, “ESB is in the queue and every Friday will be Grill & Fill Friday.” For $12 customers fill their growlers with Black Swan beer and get a cheeseburger. $4 more per growler. If you have an item for Beer Buzz, send an email to email@example.com. Deadline for Beer Buzz is Thursday noon before the Wednesday of publication.
Sat. July 23
INDIANA ISLAND BAND Tues. July 26
ACOUSTIC CATFISH Sat. July 30
TONOS TRIAD Tues. August 2
SECOND WIND TRIO Local Food Vendors for 2011 include Byrne’s Pizza, Hoosier Fat Daddy, Mabel On The Move. Please bring your own chairs.
MOVIES We’re Glad You’re Here BY S A M W A T E R ME IE R E DI T O RS @N U V O . N E T
r (NR) We’re Glad You’re Here is a new and rather notable entry in the rapidly growing “mumblecore” movement which consists of Altman-esque character studies, told through overheard conversations (hence the genre’s name). The film makes the viewer a fly on the wall in the world of a rudderless twenty-something as she sleepwalks through a quarter-life crisis. Anxious and defeated after her dreams of an advertising career in New York are dashed, Catherine (Lindsay Burdge) moves back home to pastoral Bloomington, Indiana. With its history-infused buildings and grassy knolls, Bloomington is an idyllic college town. Writer-director Hannah Fidell’s depiction of academics is less romantic. A particularly provocative scene finds Catherine in an apartment with other students, all of whom reek of pomposity. As they smugly
Lindsay Burdge stars as Catherine in the locally-made Indy Film Fest drama, “We’re Glad You’re Here.”
discuss societal issues without really listening to one another, the film emerges as a critical look at the Facebook generation, which uses communication more for narcissistic purposes than to truly connect with other people. Fidell expresses her critical feelings about academia and America’s youth not only through Catherine, but through the film’s visual style as well. The scholarly gathering places are cold, sterile and starkly lit whereas the rural world around them is warm, organic
and inviting. The affection in this portrait of Bloomington undoubtedly stems from Fidell’s sentimental perceptions toward the city. (She is only four years removed from Indiana University.) Gazing with misty eyes at the calm scenery around her, Catherine is clearly a reflection of Fidell. Burdge shines in the role, handling the film’s cinema verite style with considerable grace and ease, making each moment feel natural and authentic. Ben Dickinson
is equally engaging as Michael, a bohemian drifter as free in spirit as Catherine aspires to be. Her yearning for his simple life is tangible and poignant. We’re Glad You’re Here is captivating in its familiarity and ultra-realistic depiction of life as a twenty-something. Viewers that age will feel as though they are eavesdropping on peers while older audience members will get the sense that they are looking back on old memories — images of innocence long lost. The film is an exercise in voyeurism, so if you are in the mood to watch an experiment, you will be swept away by its you-are-there immediacy. If you’re not up for the challenge of watching a film in which events unfold as slowly and clumsily as they do in real life, it may take you a while to warm up to this one. Either way, you will be rewarded, because in the end, this is a universally appealing film. It effectively captures feelings of desperation, the pressure to acquire a stable career, the excitement and fear of growing up and entering the real world — all the joys and pains of early adulthood. In short, We’re Glad You’re Here is one of the Indy Film Fest’s best offerings. It is playing Wednesday, July 20 at 8 p.m. and Saturday, July 23 at 4:30 p.m. in the IMA’s Toby Theatre. It screens alongside Type A, a short film about artists Adam Ames and Andrew Bordwin and their project for the IMA’s 100 Acres Art & Nature Park.
FILM CLIPS OPENING
The following are reviews of films currently playing in Indianapolis area theaters. Reviews are written by Ed Johnson-Ott (EJO) unless otherwise noted. BRIDE FLIGHT (R)
A forbidden love, an impossible choice, a secret pact. Eager to escape the damp and suffocating atmosphere of post-war Holland, Dutch beauties Marjorie, Ada and Esther meet each other on the immigration flight to New Zealand, en route to join their new husbands, who are already settled there. The women separate on landing, but their lives keep intertwining. In Dutch with subtitles. 130 minutes. At the Movie Buff Theater.
CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER (PG-13)
Marvel’s superhero Captain America was the subject of two lame TV movies/failed TV series pilots in the ‘70s starring Reb Brown. The jazzed-up new version stars Chris Evans, the Human Torch in the Fantastic Four movies, as WWII-era Steve Rogers, a scrawny dude who gets beefed up as the result of super-soldier experiments by the military and becomes a costumed hero, battling the fearsome Red Skull (Hugo Weaving). The big question is if the filmmakers can come up with a costume for the live-action movie that resembles the gaudy comic book outfit without looking ridiculous. 121 minutes.
FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS (R)
Forget that other movie this year about a couple trying to have sex but keep their relationship casual — Friends with Benefits, starring Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis, is the real deal. We hope. The premise may sound tired, but the cast — which includes Woody Harrelson, Patricia Clarkson, Emma Watson, Andy Samberg and Rashida Jones — is impressive. If the trailer is any indication, the relationships between the various characters are relaxed and fun to watch. Regardless of the premise, if the characters work, you’ve probably got a crowd-pleaser on your hands. Written and directed by Will Gluck (Easy A). 104 minutes. Read Ed’s review Friday at www.nuvo.net.
THE SWELL SEASON (NR)
The secret is out! This Friday, July 22 at 9 p.m., the Indy Film Fest will present an advanced screening of this documentary, which won’t be released nationally until the fall. The film follows Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, the folk rock musicians of the indie film hit Once. 91 minutes. At the IMA’s Toby Theatre. $10 for the public, $5 for museum members.
Actors Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon play exaggerated versions of themselves in this wry, elegant, and devilishly charming road trip comedy. The film follows the incessantly competitive comedians as they tour the English countryside, taking bites of local food — and each other’s egos. Together with director Michael Winterbottom, Coogan and Brydon find plenty of pathos beneath the breezy comic surface, and the film emerges as an intimate, biting look at male insecurity. 107 minutes. At Landmark’s Keystone Art Cinema. — Sam Watermeier
movies // 07.20.11-07.27.11 // NUVO // 100% RECYCLED PAPER
Here it is, the grand finale, the last Harry Potter movie ever. The production has a HARRY POTTER AND great building sense of apocalyptic drama, with welcome moments of humor to keep THE DEATHLY the solemnness from becoming oppressive. Alexandre Desplat’s score is excellent. The visuals range from storybookish, but evocative to flat-out stunning. Steve Kloves’ HALLOWS: screenplay is a model of efficiency, and David Yates’ direction is solid. The acting is PART 2
top notch — no surprise considering the franchise’s combination of a who’s who of Britain’s best actors and a group of winning newcomers who made the transition from childhood to near-adulthood look easy.
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music Denver Ferguson
Indy���s grandaddy of rock ‘n’ roll BY S CO T T S H O G E R S S H O G E R@N U V O . N E T
bout a half-hour into my interview with Preston Lauterbach, I realized we hadn’t really addressed the key thesis of his book, The Chitlin’ Circuit and the Road to Rock ‘n’ Roll — namely, that the chitlin’ circuit, that concatenation of black Southern black clubs, was an incubator for key innovations in American music, including jump blues in the ‘40s and rock ‘n’ roll in the ‘50s. So, mea culpa; read the book to find out how Lauterbach lays out that argument, because we spent our time talking about the role Indianapolis plays in the story of the chitlin’ circuit, and, in particular, the influence of one man, Denver Ferguson — gambling kingpin, talent promoter, proprietor of Indiana Avenue club Sunset Terrace, community benefactor, and, as Lauterbach puts it, “grandaddy of rock ‘n’ roll.” The Chitlin’ Circuit, published Monday by Norton, is the first book by Lauterbach, a Memphis-based music journalist. Here’s an excerpt from our phone interview, conducted Friday. NUVO: You drew heavily on the Indianapolis Recorder archives to conjure up Indiana Avenue. LAUTERBACH: I crave to be there, and by there I mean another time, another place that I just don’t have physical access to as a dimensionally-bound human being. I like to find really electrifying resources, and reading the old Recorder put me right there, put me right on the Avenue. I could hear the music, I could smell the fried fish, had to dodge a few punches and watch out for switchblades. It was just a tremendous resource and not ashamed to tell the truth. The journalistic truth and the truth are two different things, and they were not afraid to tell the truth. NUVO: Tell me about Denver and Sea Ferguson, who helped to establish the chitlin’ circuit, but first started by making money off the numbers game. LAUTERBACH: It all began with the numbers game, which Denver started and then brought Sea in as an early partner. By the mid-‘20s, they were rolling, and, of course, the geography there on Indiana Avenue was very concentrated — all the black residences for the most part were in that district. So it was really intimate, tight area that Denver and Sea figured out how to make money off of, outside of normal, legitimate channels
that wouldn’t have been available to black entrepreneurs of that time. If I can say, I didn’t intend and don’t want for Denver and Sea to be portrayed as immoral. They were dealing with racial segregation, the system that was imposed on them, and because they were talented people, they chose to go outside of that system. It wasn’t necessarily that robbery was their motive, because they turned the proceeds of their game into a basis for community development on a couple of levels. One, they built the Sunset Terrace up on the corner of Indiana and Blake, or Denver did; Sea had the Cotton Club, which was down at Vermont, Senate and Indiana. Those were the key showplaces on Indiana Avenue, which brought the top acts in black pop, all the way from the ‘30s: Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Ella Fitzgerald; on up through the transitional era of the ‘40s, when people like Louis Jordan were hot; on up to early rockers like Roy Brown in the late ‘40s and early ‘50s. Their importance to this chitlin’ circuit was this: Denver started the first national, far-reaching talent agency that was run by an African-American. It was on the books as of late 1941. He may have operated without legal paperwork before then; there wasn’t a lot of evidence there was a ton of activity. But by 1941, he was the only black operator of a national talent agency. He had up to a dozen bands working for him that he was booking in a variety of venues all across the map. The way he worked his circuit, he’d lay out a sequence of southern towns — Jacksonville, Florida; Macon, Georgia; Birmingham, Alabama; Memphis, Tennessee — and he’d cycle acts one after another, bumping them through like train cars through those towns. It was quite an elegant system. It brought great exposure for these bands down south. It brought entertainment down south, where there weren’t a ton of options. And it really stimulated the creative environment down there. NUVO: The Sunset Terrace was a kind of rough place. You talk about how Duke Ellington only played the club once, refusing to come back after regulars threw beer bottles at him. LAUTERBACH: I love that story. It’s interesting, too, because Duke was not a chitlin’ circuit artist. He was part of this upper crust, a very thin upper crust of elite black jazz bands — himself, Calloway, Basie, a couple others. He still played some Southern dates and he still played some rough ballrooms like the Sunset, but in my research I started to see this division between the world Ellington worked in and the world Walter Barnes or Tiny Bradshaw worked in. I didn’t know how I could really lay that out in the book without sounding analytical. And, of course, that story of Duke playing the Sunset and a brawl breaking out, bottles and liquor flying everywhere and staining his suit emerged, with him storming off and saying, “I’m never going to play this dump again.” That illustrated the point nicely, I think. I got lucky.
Coggeshall: Interview with Interpol’s Daniel Kessler
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PHOTO COURTESY OF CAROLE FINNELL
Denver Ferguson, with skull.
NUVO: Indianapolis cops and politicians seemed to bear down on Indiana Avenue for politically- or racially-motivated reasons. But, at the same time, they usually had reasons that weren’t entirely unjustifiable for moving when they did — for instance, cracking down on gambling and clubs after a murder. LAUTERBACH: I think that’s true, but I guess the point that I was trying to emphasize about morality and the choices that the Fergusons made in their lives was simply that there was not a whole lot of capital available for any sort of community development or improvement in black America, not just in Indy but across the map. The Fergusons made money how they could, and they weren’t complete saints. But they made structural improvements to the Avenue, they stimulated business activity, they bought Little League uniforms, Sea set up a scholarship fund for businessinclined black students who didn’t have the money to go to college. They filled this philanthropic and community-building gap through ill-gotten proceeds; in other words, gambling was illegal. The police? Sometimes they aided and abetted, sometimes they
Spicer: Random Band Challenge in Columbus Brown: Mountain Man interview, Gray Granite x 90 lbs’s “Playfair” review, Inside MusiCast feature
Selm: Saving the Sinking Ship Nichols: Roots/rock notes
accepted bribes, and when one of them sang out about this very widely-known and accepted practice that was a little too dirty for widespread public knowledge, that absolutely hurt the Indiana Avenue community, because it cut off financing. NUVO: And can we talk a little more about his shrewdness with respect to managing and building the chitlin’ circuit? LAUTERBACH: He went deeper than anyone else. He collected phone books from all across America, but primarily in the Deep South. He would search these phone books for what he considered to be black code words. If there was a place called the Cotton Club, he could be assured that that was a little black bar or nightclub. He understood that, like Indiana Avenue, there were a hundred other segregated black enclaves across the country, densely populated areas of black people in cities and towns, and he knew the way they all worked. There was a kingpin figure, your barbershops, your barrooms, your social hubs. By understanding that, he made the social hubs in places that didn’t have any entertainment into the central dispatch for his shows. He would train a barber in a small town in Tennessee to sell
Kagiwada: Duets in the Round
his tickets, to put his placards up, to find, whether it was a tobacco barn or an agricultural warehouse — any place to showcase a band — and would work them very much like he would work a numbers runner up on the Indiana Avenue area. That’s what he did — he took what he called shadow promoters, people in small towns that were completely outside anything happening culturally, even in black America, and he made them the hubs for the chitlin’ circuits. That was really his prime innovation, getting these small towns energized.
NUVO: I wonder about your research into Ferguson. Has anyone else written on him with this amount of detail?
LAUTERBACH: When I started researching the chitlin’ circuit, I didn’t know how it had begun, and one thing led to another, which eventually led to an old Avenue musician named Sax Kari who had worked for Denver. He tipped me — he called Ferguson the inventor of the chitlin’ circuit, and so I started going to Indianapolis to do research in putting the story together. Details about Ferguson’s life started coming out through NUVO: And you tell the story of the downmy research, so I actually put his whole life fall of Ferguson, including his relationship story together, but it had not existed in print with a German war bride. anymore. His daughter is still there; she was very kind and very helpful. The first time I LAUTERBACH: That proved to be his undowent to Indianapolis, I had heard about the ing. He took up a correspondence with Terrace from Sax. Being the nerd that I am, I a German lady who ended up being a went straight to the library and researched, German war bride, a lady named Lilo and started putting together, ‘OK, the club Rentsch, who, along with a friend of hers, was located on Indiana Avenue, and then I had written a letter to Ebony magazine saylooked at newspaper ads, and every other ing they were looking for black husbands. club was on Indiana Avenue. And wow, What was funny about that, even though the Avenue was the place.’ The next mornit ended up being Denver’s undoing in an ing, I went to the Avenue, and you know ultimately tragic episode, was how he and what I saw! I was standing right where the Lilo were pen-pals for the longest time, and Sunset Terrace was, across the street from they would write each Lockefield Gardens, other syrupy, breathpondering all of this. less letters about how There was a little old much they wanted to dude sitting in a wheelbe together, and they’re chair at a bus stop, both totally misrepresmoking cigarette. So senting themselves to I go up to him, and it each other, which is, turned out he was a of course, the essence really sweet guy named of pen pal romance. Joe Hester. He had been Denver was, in his leta partier, and partied at ters, 10 years younger, the Sunset Terrace. And and Lilo, in her letters, he played the numbers —Preston Lauterbach was 100 pounds lighter. game. He was a terSo, when they really met on Sunset Terrace rific source, as a typical in New York when her Ferguson customer, a boat came across, it was someone into that life. quite a shock to both That was interesting: of them, and this beautiful romance that trying to find out where this whole culture they had concocted simply was not going had vanished to, and then finding a piece of to work in reality. It put Denver in quite it there, still living. a bind because, as an African-American man, he would get in a lot of trouble simply for traveling, whether by train or by a car, from New York to Indianapolis with a white woman. He would have been arrested and indicted under the Mann Act of transporting women across state boundaries for immoral purposes, which was more or less a code for making sure black guys don’t carry white women around. So, he had to marry her, and he did, and I don’t know if they earnestly tried to make it work, but she did live with him for a while and they did not get along very well. And they divorced almost as soon as the ink on the marriage certificate dried. With the divorce and the receivership, she ended up taking control of the Sunset Terrace club. It was such a major blow, not only to Denver’s pocketbook but to his psyche. This is what he had put his life’s work and energy into. It was a jewel of the Avenue and a real monument to the vigor of the black community in Indianapolis. To have this woman come and take it from him — it broke him. He had a series of strokes, and he died within about four years of bringing his war bride over from Germany. She got his assets and THE CHITLIN’ CIRCUIT ruined his health. I decided to include that AND THE ROAD TO in the story, even though it was not the most ROCK ‘N’ ROLL germane thing to chitlin’ circuit activity, Preston Lauterbach because it illustrates the danger for not only Norton, July 2011, $26.95 individual black people but black America in dealing across the color line.
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Going solo, again
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ixies frontman Black Francis is a family guy and a generally busy person, on hiatus from a successful two-yearsand-counting reunion tour with his revered, groundbreaking alt-rock band The Pixies. So why bother with a nine-date U.S. solo tour? “Just to pick up some ice cream money for me and the kids,” he says. But seriously – maybe – Francis and his wife are relocating their brood from Oregon to his New England homeland, and this two-week jaunt is a sensible way to do that. “I’ve got to transport a largish family from one side of the country to the other,” he says via cell phone from somewhere in the Northwest. “What’s the best way to do it? A tour bus, of course. There’s no finer way to travel. We can sleep while we’re traveling, and during the day, we can go to the art museum or the zoo, where we are today.” Just how largish is the family? “I’m not sure,” says Francis, aka Frank Black and Charles Thompson IV. “There’s a bunch of them, from diapers to full-on teenager attitude.” Solid factual information can be hard to draw out of a man who responds to even simple questions in rambling, wiseacre fashion; think Al Franken in non-senator mode. Reasonably certain, however, is that Francis is playing primarily electric guitar on this tour, accompanied by longtime collaborator Eric Drew Feldman (Captain Beefheart, Residents, Pere Ubu) on keyboards, bass and other instruments. At the show, expect a mix of tunes from throughout Francis’ career, including Pixies classics and Frank Black tunes. He’s not the type to hard-sell a new release at every appearance. “I’m not really much of a ‘campaign’ touring guy, you know what I’m saying?” he says. “I’m out to sell me. I’m out to sell the career. I’m out to sell the brand name.” New product is on its way, however. Francis has recorded an album with Brooklyn-based, Tom Waits-ish singersongwriter Reid Paley, to be titled Paley & Francis and released in September. “He is very old-school. He’s not into fancy verbose wordplay, and he’s not into complicated chords,” Francis says of Paley. “I wouldn’t say it’s a particularly mellow record, it’s just not bombastic in the modern sense of, you know, all that drumming. But there’s guitars and bass and keyboards and a little bit of saxophone. To me, it’s rock music. It was recorded in Nashville, but certainly it’s not a country record.” Also in the can, though not yet scheduled for release, is a comprehensive boxed set of the remastered Frank Black & the Catholics catalog, material that has been out of print in the U.S. for a few years. According to Francis, the songs will be sequenced alphabetically. “It’s all about the band and their complete body of work, instead of ‘First we did this and then we did that,’” he says. “I thought it would be more fun just to put as many songs as we could on one CD, and
when we ran out of room we’d put the rest on the next CD, and so on. So what’s the sequence? Well, alphabetical works for me.” In recent years, Francis has composed an obscure film soundtrack and produced albums for Pete Yorn and the European band Art Brut, but neither route tempts him as a new career path. It seems the old career is serving him pretty well, which might be why he returned to the Black Francis stage name in 2007 after more than a decade as Frank Black. Following a tense breakup in 1993, the Pixies reunited in 2004 to wide acclaim and sold-out halls, and they haven’t strayed far from the limelight since. The ongoing world tour began in 2009 as a 20th anniversary celebration of their U.S. breakthrough album, Doolittle. After traveling this spring through Canada and the Great Lakes, they just announced an October-November swing through the eastern states. “We thought it would last a season, but you know, the phone keeps ringing, and we keep getting requests from different promoters in different cities to bring the show to them, so we go where we’re needed,” Francis says. As is often pointed out, the Pixies were an inspiration for many bands, most notably Nirvana, who enjoyed far greater fame and fortune in their wake. Does Francis feel like his crew missed the gravy train? “I’m quite happy with the way things have worked out,” he says. “A lot of bands that have a lot of success, they don’t weather time very well. They have their moment, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but you’re not able to make a career out of that moment. … It’s hard for me to feel regret that, ‘Oh gee, I didn’t have my own jet airplane when I was on MTV for five minutes.’ Whatever, man. I’m still touring, still playing big venues. I haven’t made a record with the Pixies in 20 years, and we’re still on the festival bill.” Speaking of a new record, guitarist Joey Santiago and drummer David Lovering have hinted in recent interviews that Francis and bassist Kim Deal have settled their differences and are planning a return to the studio. But whether those rumblings are true, Francis will neither confirm nor deny. “There always is that rumble,” he says. “I have not been allowed by my associates to say anything more than that.” Drawing the interview to a close, Francis pauses as children’s voices are heard in the background. “I need to find my family,” he says. “It’s not that big of a zoo. I figured I’d run into them.” BLACK FRANCIS, VESS RUHTENBERG Radio Radio, 1119 E. Prospect St. Wednesday, July 20, 8 p.m., sold out, 21+
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METAL RACEBANNON, BATILLUS, MUTILATION RITES
Vibes Music, 1051 E. 54th St. 7 p.m., $8, all-ages Bloomington’s Racebannon has been making intriguing heavy music poised between post-hardcore and art rock for over a decade now. The band’s deconstructionist approach has been compared to Captain Beefheart’s, which makes some sense — not only does vocalist Mike Anderson have a distinctively weird vocal style comparable to Beefheart’s, all stream-of-consciousness yelps and moans, but Racebannon even covered the master himself on one of the band’s two Secretly Canadian releases, In the Grips of the Light . Their latest, Six Sik Sisters , was released yesterday on Chicago label Tizona Records. With a couple Brooklyn doom metal bands, Batillus and Mutilation Rites.
ROCK INTERPOL, THE SOFT MOON
The Vogue, 6259 N. College Ave. 8 p.m., $29 (plus fees), 21+ Brooklyn post-punk band Interpol is managing to cram a few headlining dates in between opening gigs for U2 this summer. They’ll be here Friday night as the main attraction, and Saturday takes them to Minneapolis for an arena show with the biggest band in the world. Interpol, which became a trio after the departure of founding bassist Carlos Dengler, has added a couple touring musicians for this run of shows— Brad Truax (Animal Collective) on bass and Brandon Curtis (The Secret Machines) on keyboards. Read Wade Coggeshall’s interview with Interpol founder Daniel Kessler on nuvo.net.
ROCK BLACK FRANCIS
Radio Radio, 1119 E. Prospect St. 8 p.m., sold out, 21+ See feature, pg. 27.
ROCKABILLY KIM LENZ AND THE JAGUARS, DAVY JAY SPARROW Radio Radio, 1119 E. Prospect St. 8 p.m., $10, 21+ The genuine article, Kim Lenz writes her own stuff, leads a band that can burn, man, burn, belts them out with twang and generally keeps things true to the rockabilly of yore, comparing favorably to pioneers like Wanda Jackson. Plus, she looks the look, with long red locks and a taste for period dresses. An oft-booked fave of Radio Radio, naturally, the club being rockabilly central ‘round these parts.
METAL THE SWORD, MOUNT CARMEL, GOLIATHON
The Vogue, 6259 N. College Ave. 8 p.m., $13 advance, $15 door (plus fees), 21+ If you’re still keen on sci-fi concept albums (and they do get a bad rap), Austin-based stoner metal band The Sword has got your fix. Their latest, 2010’s Warp Riders, depicts the travails of Ereth the Archer, banished to the planet Acheron where he must fight endless battles against evil creatures, aided by some sort of creature named the Chronomancer that exists beyond time and space. Anyways, the sound remains the same regardless of the story — vintage metal with a stoner rock bent. With more hard rock from Columbus, Ohio’s Mount Carmel and locals Goliathon.
Friday & Saturday
ORCHESTRAL FOLK SYMPHONY ON THE PRAIRIE: ARLO GUTHRIE AND TIME FOR THREE
Conner Prairie, 13400 Allisonville Road 8 p.m. both nights, $20 (with parking and premium options), all-ages Coming into Noblesville. Carrying a couple of pills. Don’t touch my bags if you please, Mr. Civil War re-enactor. If Arlo Guthrie doesn’t perform our brilliant parody of his “Coming into Los Angeles,” we’ll eat our hat. This weekend, the singer-songwriter, best known for that tune about drug trafficking and the charmingly long-winded, 18-and-a-half-minute “Alice’s Restaurant Massacree,” performs for the first time at Symphony on the Prairie, joined by garage classical trio Time for Three. Promo copy promises a mix of “folk, jazz, bluegrass and other popular standards,” as well as Guthrie’s own work.
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RADNESS RAD SUMMER FESTIVAL
Rock Lobster, 820 Broad Ripple Ave. 4 p.m., $3, 21+ Once merely a promotions outfit putting on dance and hip-hop shows, Rad Summer becomes so much more this, er, rad summer, with the launch of an affiliated record label at a star-studded festival Saturday. The first two Rad Summer releases are already available via Beatport and iTunes — Rad Summer cofounder Action Jackson’s EP, When the Night Falls, was catalog No. 1 (actually RS001), with Chicago’s Lemi Vice, Lemons/Let’s All Fall in Love, following close behind. Work by Dave Owen, Figure, Flufftronix, Oreo Jones and Scott Metallic is in the pike for the label. The lineup for Saturday: Flufftronix, Vice, jones, Owen, Jackson, Flaco, Slater Hogan, A Squared DJs and DJ B Qwratt. Plenty of merchandise will be on display, including exclusive tank tops designed by Rad Summer and Dope Couture and sundry goods by Savvy Bazaar.
FOLK MOUNTAIN MAN, CHEYENNE MARIE MIZE
Radio Radio, 1119 E. Prospect St. 9 p.m., $8 advance, $10 door, 21+ There are no men in Mountain Man, though the three members of the Vermont-based trio do sound as if they’ve spent some time communing with nature, becoming one with its waters, summiting its mounts. They are, to be sure, part of a movement of sorts, sharing a back-to-the-cabin aesthetic with folks like Bon Iver (also in town this week) and Fleet Foxes (never in this town, to our knowledge). But their stuff is even more unadorned, with their Made the Harbor sounding like a field recording of three muses or farmers’ daughter, their voices perfectly harmonized, their repertoire drawn from Appalachia. With Louisville’s Cheyenne Marie Mize, another performer born a century too late, whose EP with Bonnie “Prince” Billy, Among the Gold, featured cute, timeless renditions of six parlor songs, including a surprisingly not-annoying take on “Let Me Call You Sweetheart.” Check out Daniel Brown’s interview with Mountain Man, running later this week on nuvo.net.
to melodrama, and moodiness can turn into angst. But there’s enough of the good stuff — the opener (“County Line”) and closer (the spooky classical-folk number “A Knock on the Door”) to his new one, Wit’s End — to make this yet another solid bet presented by MOKB Presents this week.
ROCK BON IVER, THE ROSEBUDS
Murat Theatre at Old National Centre, 502 N. New Jersey St. 7:30 p.m., $32.50-$50 (plus fees), all-ages Bon Iver opened up their sound on their self-titled sophomore record, leaving behind the claustrophobia, torture and some of the grace of 2007’s For Emma Forever Ago , and bringing on the saxophones, the strings and the Casios. Sometimes, bandleader Justin Vernon aims for a soft-soft-rock feel in the vein of one of his other group Gayngs, the 10cc and Solid Gold-inspired ensemble also on Bloomington label Jagjaguwar. At other points it’s all about texture and tone, with string arrangements by a guy who’s worked for Antony and the Johnsons and Arcade Fire (Rob Moose) set against electronics and Vernon’s unusually and sometimes startlingly harmonized vocals. With alternately cheerful and gothic Wilmington-based indie rock trio The Rosebuds.
SINGER-SONGWRITER CASS MCCOMBS, LOWER DENS
White Rabbit Cabaret, 1116 E. Prospect St. 7 p.m., $10 advance, 21+ At his best, Baltimore’s Cass McCombs can belt out a ballad with the moody brilliance of Mark Kozelek and the soft-rock smoothness of (say) Jackson Browne. Of course, those kinds of ingredients can curdle — perfectly-pitched dramatics can give way
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NEWS OF THE WEIRD
Bad luck drinker Plus, much ado about not much BY CHUCK SHE PHERD On May 21, Jesse Robinson either established or tied the unofficial world record for unluckiest underage drinker of all time when he was booked into the Hamilton County, Ohio, jail for underage consumption. According to booking records, Robinson’s date of birth is May 22, 1990.
Government in action!
• Common sense lost its voice on this one,” concluded a Wethersfield, Conn., city councilman, lamenting the local school board’s having spent at least $630,000 to “resolve” an ethics complaint against the board’s chairwoman -- all because her son had improperly taken a $400 high school course for free. The town’s ethics board conducted more than 60 hours of hearings over 11 months, incurring $407,000
Continued on pg 35
in legal expenses, and finally voted, 3-2, to uphold the complaint. (However, the ethics board ordered only that the chairwoman reimburse the $400; the school board then voted to pay all her legal expenses.) • “Science does not trump the testimony of individuals,” said Detroit prosecutor Marilyn Eisenbraun, explaining her office’s decision in April to disregard DNA evidence that the University of Michigan’s Innocence Clinic said exonerates Karl Vinson, 56, who has spent 25 years in prison for rape. Despite the science, Eisenbraun said she had to stick with eyewitness identification by the victim. Although Vinson has been eligible for release for 15 years, the Parole Board keeps turning him down -- because he refuses to acknowledge guilt. (Update: In July, the Michigan Court of Appeals declined to order either Vinson’s release or a new trial, but did grant him an extraordinary right to appeal, based on the new evidence.) • In June, as five young men gathered around the Mount Tabor Reservoir near Portland, Ore., one urinated in it, thus “contaminating” the 7.2 million gallons that serve the city, and, said Water Bureau administrator David Shaff, necessitating that the entire supply be dumped. Under
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NEWS OF THE WEIRD questioning by the weekly Portland Mercury whether the water is also dumped when an animal urinates in it (or worse, dies in it), Shaff replied, certainly not. “If we did that, we’d be (dumping the water) all the time.” Well, asked the reporter, what’s the difference? Because, said Shaff (sounding confident of his logic), “Do you want to be drinking someone’s pee?” • A 53-year-old man committed suicide in May by wading into San Francisco Bay, 150 yards offshore, and standing neck-deep until he died in the 60-degree water, with police and firefighters from the city of Alameda watching from shore the entire time. Said a police lieutenant, “We’re not trained to go into the water (and) don’t have the type of equipment that you would use ....” KGOTV attributed the reluctance to budget cuts that prevented the city’s firefighters from being recertified in water rescues. • Title IX of the federal Civil Rights Act requires universities to offer “equal” intercollegiate athletic access to females, even though finding that many serious female athletes is difficult on some campuses. The easiest subterfuge, according to an April New York Times report, is to pad women’s teams with whimsically enlisted females -- and in some cases, with males. Said former university president (and Health and Human Services Secretary) Donna Shalala, “Those of us in the business know that universities have been end-running Title IX for a long time, and they do it until they get caught.” Sample dysfunctional result: When University of South Florida added football (100 male players) a few years ago, it was forced to populate more female teams, and thus “recruited” 71 women for its cross-country team, even though fewer than half ran races and several were surprised to know they were even on the team when a Times reporter inquired.
• Britain’s Ben Wilson is one artist with the entire field to himself -- the only painter who creates finely detailed masterpieces on flattened pieces of chewing gum found on London sidewalks. Frequently spotted lying nearly inert on the ground, working, Wilson estimates he has painted “many thousands” of such “canvases,” ranging from portraits and landscapes to specialized messages (such as listing the names of all employees at a soon-tobe-closed Woolworth’s store). According to a June New York Times dispatch, Wilson ini-
tially heats each piece with a blowtorch, applies lacquer and acrylic enamel before painting -- and sealing with more lacquer. And of course he works only with tiny, tiny brushes.
• Gregory Snelling, 41, was indicted in June for the robbery of a KeyBank branch in Springfield, Ohio, which was notable more for the foot chase with police afterward. They caught him, but Snelling might deserve “style” points for the run, covered as he was in red dye from the money bag and the fact that he was holding a beer in his hand during the entire chase.
• (1) Brent Kendall, 31, was arrested in June in Coralville, Iowa, and charged with criminal mischief after he allegedly reacted to a domestic quarrel with his live-in girlfriend by cutting up items of her clothing and urinating on her bed and computer. (2) An employee of Bed, Bath and Beyond at the St. Davids Square shopping center in Radnor, Pa., reported to police on June 5 that, for the second time in two weeks, he had come across a bag (estimated to weigh about 35 pounds) behind the store, filled with human vomit.
Criminals with xhutzpah
• It was a 2004 gang-related murder that had frustrated Los Angeles police for four years until a homicide investigator, paging through gangbangers’ photographs for another case, spotted an elaborate tattoo on the chest of Anthony Garcia. Evidently, that 2004 killing was such a milestone in Garcia’s life that he had commemorated the liquor store crime scene on his chest. The investigation was reopened, eventually leading to a surreptitious confession by Garcia and, in April 2011, to his conviction for first-degree murder. (Photos from Garcia’s several bookings between 2004 and 2008 show his mural actually evolving as he added details -- until the crime scene was complete enough that the investigator recognized it.)
Least competent noncriminals
• In May, in Rensselaer, N.Y., and in June, in Bluefield, W.Va., two men, noticing that police were investigating nearby, became alarmed and fled out of fear of being arrested since both were certain that there were active warrants out on
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them. Nicholas Volmer, 21, eventually “escaped” into the Hudson River and needed to be rescued, but the police were after someone else, and no warrant was on file against him. Arlis Dempsey Jr., 32, left his three kids on the street in Bluefield to make a run for it before police caught him, but he was not wanted for anything, either. (Both men, however, face new charges -- trespassing for Volmer, and child endangerment for Dempsey.)
• (1) People sometimes have illicit sex in cemeteries, and
when they get really aggressive, tombstones may fall over on top of them. (A randy 39-yearold woman was injured in Hamilton, N.J., in June after a gravestone rolled onto her leg at the Ahavath Israel Cemetery.) (2) Motorists who stop along the side of the road at night to relieve themselves are often not careful enough. (In May, a specialty unit from the Renton, Wash., Fire Department was required in order to rescue a urinator who accidentally fell down a 30-foot embankment in south King County and was trapped for several hours.)
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classifieds ADULT ........................................................................................................33 AUTO.......................................................................................................... 39 BODY/MIND/SPIRIT ....................................................................................39 EMPLOYMENT ...........................................................................................38 MARKETPLACE ..........................................................................................39 RELAXING MASSAGE ................................................................................ 34 REAL ESTATE ............................................................................................. 36 TO ADVERTISE A CLASSIFIEDS AD: Phone: (317) 254-2400 | Fax: (317) 479-2036 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org | www.nuvo.net/classifieds Mail: Nuvo Classifieds 3951 North Meridian St., Suite 200 Indianapolis, Indiana 46208
2001 N TALBOTT ST One Bdrm Apt - $480 per month, Heat & W ater paid, Appliances furnished, (317) 955-8775 2007 N TALBOTT ST Two Bdrm Apt with Spare room - $775 per month, Heat & W ater paid, Appliances furnished, (317) 955-8775 DOWNTOWN LIVING! Indy’s Finest Apartments! 317370-5963 LARGE STUDIOS AND 1 BEDROOMS All utility paid from $550! Beautiful hardwoods, wonderful grounds, incredible charm! Free parking and low low deposit special of only $200. Email aaronreel@ gmail.com or text 317.627.1397 right away . 708 E. 11th St. Athena Real Estate Services, LLC LOVE DOWNTOWN? Roomy 1920’ s Studio near IUPUI & Canal. Dining area with built-ins, huge W/I closet. Heat paid. Shows Nicely! $445/mo. Leave message 722-7115.
1 AND 2 BEDROOMS Carpet or hardwood floors. Very private building located in residential area on N. Pennsylvania St. Only $99 deposit. Starts at $470. Call 924-6256.
UPSCALE DOWNTOWN LIVING 549 N. Senate Avenue, 1BR starting at $799, newly renovated units, stainless appliances. 317-636-7669
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2 BEDROOM HOMES Near Broad Ripple at 50th & Keystone area. Hardwood ﬂoors, formal dining rooms, garage, enclosed porches, nice charm from $595. Call 317-7137123 or text 317.627.1397 Athena Real Estate Services, LLC 5 BEDROOM NEAR BROAD RIPPLE Beautiful hardwood ﬂ oors, formal dining room, 2 car garage, oversized closets and wonderful character. $1450.00. Available now! E-mail aaronreel@ gmail.com or text 317.627.1397 right away BROADRIPPLE AREA Newly decorated apartments near Monon Trail. Spacious, quiet, secluded. Starting $475. 5300 Carrollton Ave. 257-7884. EHO CARMEL Twin Lakes Apartments All Utilities Paid Apts & Townhomes (317)-846-2538.
Experience the art of life at Carmel City Center, a vibrant oasis of activity featuring a thoughtful balance of home, shopping, entertainment and culture. Two bedrooms apartments starting from $1345 featuring granite countertops and stainless steel appliances. Open daily. For more information call 317-428-5135 or visit www.carmelcitycenter.com
426 N. BRADLEY AVE. 3BR. 1/2 DBL. New Remodel. 1st ﬂ oor Master BR and 1/2 Bath. 2BR and Full Bath upstairs. New Kitchen and carpet. $625/mo. + Dep. Call 317-828-4232. 428 N. BRADLEY 3BR. 1/2 DBL. Fenced back yard. Large rooms. $550/mo. + Dep. Call 317-828-4232 4531 E. 19TH ST. Cozy 2BR. 1/2 DBL. Fresh paint. Clean from top to bottom. Full bsmt. $472/mo. + Dep. Call 317-828-4232. 4609 E. 19TH STREET 1BR. 1/2 DBL. Full, Clean, Dry Basement. $425/mo. + Dep. Call 317-828-4232
OLDE MILL CONDO Spacious 2BR, 2BA on the water. Generous Closets .$2200/ mo. 317-257-7884
CONDO ON THE WATER 2BR. 1.5 BA. Garage. W/D. Large deck. Like Brand New . Clubhouse, pool and boating. Northside location. $900/mo. Call 317-253-7366
Private front and back entry. Hardwood floors. Pets welcome. Only minutes from downtown. Special rate starts at $440. Call Christine at 782-8085.
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Phone: 808.4612 email@example.com
RENTALS EAST 1104 N. DENNY 1BR. 1/2 DBL. Large living room. Dining area. Hdwd ﬂoors. Partial basement. Newly rehab. $450/mo. + Dep. Call 317-828-4232. 1328 N. CHESTER 1BR. Hardwood ﬂ oors. Updates. Partial bsmt. $435/mo. + Dep. Call 317-828-4232
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2228 N. ARSENAL Nice neighborhood. 1BR. $425/mo. + deposit and utilities. 356-2312 2BR DOUBLE With Stove, Refrigerator. $600/ mo + dep. Close to Shadeland. 317-4317902 or 317-694-5788
COMMUNITY EAST AREA 5409 E. 21st. 2BR, basement, fresh paint, appliances furnished, $550/mo. Lease, dep. 317-850-1758 or 317-255-0260
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MAPLE COURT, THE GRANVILLE & THE WINDEMERE Ask about our Summer Move-In Specials! 2BR/1BA Apartments in the heart of BR Village.Great Dining, Entertainment & Shopping at your doorstep. On-site laundries & free storage. Rents range from $595-$750 some with water, sewer & heat paid. Call 317-257-5770
REAL ESTATE, TRAVEL, BODY/MIND/SPIRIT
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PAYMENT, & ADVERTISING DEADLINE All ads are prepaid in full by Monday at 5 P.M. Nuvo gladly accepts Cash, Check, Money order, Visa, Mastercard, American Express & Discover. (Please include drivers license # on all checks. )
Homes for sale | Rentals Mortgage Services | Roommates To advertise in Real Estate, Call Nuvo classifieds @ 254-2400
EMPLOYMENT, AUTO, SERVICES, MARKETPLACE
HOMES FOR SALE NORTH 3236 N. KENWOOD AVE. 3BR. 2BA. Huge yard. Basement. Central Air. Call 424222-3744.
ALL AREAS ROOMMATES.COM. Browse hundreds of online listings with photos and maps. Find your roommate with a click of the mouse! V isit: http://www. Roommates.com. (AAN CAN) ROOM FOR RENT 134 N. Elder. Nice & Quiet! For one person. $70/week + Deposit Call 317-690-8727
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Phone: (951) 637-1238 Email: email@example.com www.bigbridgetravel.com/portal/ listings/P25321
Elite Indiana State Criterium ChampionshipS
Saturday, August 13 11:30am to 9:00pm
See American-style racing up close and personal as cyclists from around the nation race by you at 25-35mph! Race Headquarters are located at 435 Massachusetts Ave.
For more information, go to truesport.com or visit us at New Belgium Mass Ave Criterium on Facebook Proceeds go to the Indianapolis Cultural Trail, Riley Neighborhood Development, Mass Ave Merchants Association (MAMA) and Davlan Park.
• The New Belgium Beer Garden offering New Belgium beer, premiere spectator seating for attendees 21+ and a family-friendly area. • The Police & Fire State Championships, Fixed Gear State Championships, & the Freewheelin’ Community Kids Race. • Freewheelin’ Community Kids Bike Rodeo from noon to 2:30pm offering free helmets from Flanner and Buchanan while supplies last!
Mass Ave Merchants Association • Pedal & Park • CIBA • ICVA • Fringe Fest • Mass Ave Cultural District • YMCA Athenaeum • Bicycle Indiana • Flanner and Buchanan • Indy Sports Corp Hoosier Mountain Bike Association • Spokes for Hope
To volunteer, email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more info, visit truesport.com or New Belgium Mass Ave Criterium on Facebook
Restaurant | Healthcare Salon/Spa | General To advertise in Employment, Call Adam @ 808-4609
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PHONE PRO Great pay for talented phone person. Experience required. Up to $30/ hour! 317-213-0713
Indianapolis Colts Grille Now Hiring
Mon-Fri 10am-6pm Circle Centre Mall 4th Floor Next to the UA/Regal Theaters. MASTERSON PERSONNEL RECRUITMENT FAIR
EXPERIENCED BARTENDERS AND SERVERS Day and night availability. Fine dining experience required. Please apply between 2 - 4pm in person at 50 S. Capitol Ave on the second floor of the Westin.
SIGN OF THE TYMES SALON New location. Now hiring for multiple positions. Booth space, commission and spacious suites available. Valerie 251-0792
Thursday, July 21, 9am - Noon REDCATS 3003 Reeves Rd, Plainﬁeld, IN
Masterson Personnel is accepting applications for various fullﬁllment/warehouse positions at the Redcats facility in Plainﬁeld. Picking/Packing, Loading/Unloading Please contact Masterson Personnel at 317-791-3000 with questions. * Bring proof of employment eligibility. Skills testing, drug screen and background check required.
OUR THANK YOU TO THE VOTERS AND THE PEOPLE YOU VOTED FOR.
Positions begin August 1, 2001 in Carmel, IN. Call 317.418.5267 or email firstname.lastname@example.org Pay: $8-9.50/hr •Shifts: Monday thru Friday 6:30-8:30am and/or 1:30-6:30pm
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Certified Massage Therapists Yoga | Chiropractors | Counseling To advertise in Body/Mind/Spirit, Call Nathan @ 808-4612 Advertisers running in the CERTIFIED MASSAGE THERAPY section have graduated from a massage therapy school associated with one of four organizations: American Massage Therapy Association (amtamassage.org)
International Massage Association (imagroup.com)
Association of Bodywork and Massage Professionals (abmp.com)
International Myomassethics Federation (888-IMF-4454)
Additionally, one can not be a member of these four organizations but instead, take the test AND/OR have passed the National Board of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork exam (ncbtmb.com).
CERTIFIED MASSAGE THERAPISTS EMPEROR MASSAGE Stimulus Rates InCall $38/60min, $60/95min. 1st visit. Call for details to discover and experience this incredible Japanese massage. Eastside, avail.24/7 317-431-5105
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HEALTH CARE SERVICES WANTED AUTO
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MISC. FOR SALE
For a fantastic massage you know and love. Call Ginger 317-640-4902.
Services | Misc. for Sale Musicians B-Board | Pets To advertise in Marketplace, Call Adam @ 808-4609
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LICENSE SUSPENDED? Call me, an experienced Traffic Law Attorney,I can help you with: Hardship Licenses-No Insurance Suspensions-Habitual T raffic V iolators-Relief from Lifetime Suspensions-DUIDriving While Suspended & All Moving Traffic Violations! Christopher W. Grider, Attorney at Law FREE CONSULTATIONS www.indytrafficattorney.com 317-686-7219
PREGNANT? ADOPTION CAN BE YOUR FRESH START! Let Amanda, Kate or Abbie meet you for lunch and talk about your options. Their Broad Ripple agency offers free support, living expenses and a friendly voice 24 hrs/ day. YOU choose the family from happy, carefully-screened couples. Pictures, letters, visits & open adoptions available. Listen to our birth mothers’ stories at www.adoptionsupportcenter.com 317-255-5916 The Adoption Support Center
FREE WILL ASTROLOGY
© 2011 BY ROB BRESZNY
ARIES (March 21-April 19): I dreamed you were in a cake store. Every delicious kind of cake you could imagine was there: carrot cake, strawberry cheesecake, gooey butter cake, rich chocolate cake with four layers of cherries and whipped cream, birthday cakes that must have been baked in paradise. Sadly, there was a problem: You weren’t allowed to buy anything, even though you had enough money. A big sign on the wall said, simply, “Absolutely no cakes available for Aries.” What do you think my dream means? More importantly, what are you going to do about the situation? I suggest that in my next dream, you get a friend to buy a cake for you. Either that, or go to a different cake store. One way or another, the astrological omens say it’s high time for you get the cake you want. TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Fill in the blanks, Taurus. Don’t let the blanks remain vacant and barren any longer. Don’t allow them to keep screaming at you with their accusatory silence. Just fill in the freaking blanks with whatever you’ve got to fill them with -- with your best guesses, with borrowed mojo, with any miscellaneous material you have at hand. I realize you may be tempted to wait around for a supposedly more ideal moment. But I’m here to tell you that this is as ideal as it gets. So please express the hell out of yourself in the empty spaces, my dear; create yourself anew in the void -however improvisational or inexact it might feel. GEMINI (May 21-June 20): “Do you know how to resolve an unresolvable paradox?” asked a Facebook friend named Pi. He answered his own question: “You figure out the ‘error’ in the initial premise or assumption.” And that’s my prescription for you this week, Gemini. Do not be tempted to bang your head against the wall so as to shake loose a non-existent answer to the wrong question. Instead, stop yourself in the middle of your angst and think: “What would be a more productive way to formulate the riddle I need to untangle?” CANCER (June 21-July 22): An innovative job-seeker named Travis Broyles put an ad on Craigslist in Atlanta. Among the tasks he said he would perform for money were the following: draw your face on a balloon; email you a list of 250 things he likes about you; build you a cardboard car and make vroom-vroom sounds while you drive it; change his political leanings; rename your Pokemon; or provide you with star treatment for a month, hiding in the bushes like a paparazzi and taking candid photos of you. I recommend that you come up with your own version of a list like this, Cancerian. It will help stimulate your imagination about what gifts you have to offer the world, which is exactly what the astrological omens are suggesting. LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): As I ponder your immediate future, I’m reminded of a scene from the animated TV show The Simpsons. Here’s the situation: While visiting the home of a colleague, the superintendent of schools is surprised to witness an anomalous outbreak of spectacular light. “Aurora Borealis?” he exclaims. “At this time of year? At this time of day? In this part of the country? Localized entirely within your kitchen?” “Yes,” replies the colleague. I suspect that you will soon enjoy a metaphorically comparable visitation, Leo. VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): My astrological colleague Antero Alli praises the value of anxiety. He says that when you feel that unsettling emotion, it’s because you’re experiencing more uncertainty than you like to -- and that can be a good thing. It could mean you’re about to experience the fertility that comes from wading into the unknown. An outbreak of novelty may be imminent, giving you the chance to welcome interesting surprises into your life. In fact, says Alli, the anxiety that comes from unpredictable mysteries may herald the arrival of an influx of creativity.
apply this test to yourself, Libra. If, after taking inventory, you find that your circle is largely composed of cohorts and comrades who match your levels of vitality and intelligence, that will be excellent news; it will signal an opportunity to begin working on an upgraded version of your social life that will increase your access to synergy and symbiosis even further. But if your survey reveals that you’re hanging out too much with people whose energy doesn’t match yours, it will be time for a metamorphosis. SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): There’s a lot of graffiti scrawled in a variety of languages on St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City. A fairly recent arrival is a plea, in English, to resuscitate a defunct American TV sitcom. “God, Bring back Arrested Development,” the guerrilla prayer reads. According to my reading of the astrological omens, Scorpio, now would be a good time for you to be equally cheeky in promoting one of your pet causes. Consider the possibility of taking your case to a higher authority. To fight for what’s right, you may have to make your mark in a place whose sphere of influence is bigger than yours. SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Do you stare for hours every day into little screens like those on smart phones, computer monitors, and TVs? If so, I recommend that you tear your gaze away from them more than usual in the coming week. A change in your brain chemistry needs to happen, and one good way to accomplish it will be to feast your eyes on vast panoramas and expansive natural scenes. Doing so will invigorate your thinking about the design and contours of your own destiny, and that would be in sweet alignment with the astrological omens. So catch regular views of the big picture, Sagittarius. Treat clouds and birds and stars a s if they were restorative messages from the wide-open future. Gaze lovingly at the big sky. CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): A Facebook friend posted a quote by seminal psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud: “Being entirely honest with oneself is a worthwhile exercise.” In response, another Facebooker named Dean Robinson disagreed: “Oh, I say let yourself have a little denial, and touch base with reality on a need-to-know basis.” Another respondent named Paulie Cerra took that sentiment one step further: “Reality and I have an understanding. I don’t mess with it and it doesn’t mess with me.” Which of those three approaches are you inclined to pursue, Capricorn? In light of the current astrological omens, I suggest you try the first one for at least the next two weeks. AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): You really need to tell your stories. It’s not just a good idea; it’s downright urgent. There’s a backlog of unexpressed narratives clogging up your depths. It’s like you have become too big of a secret to the world. The unvented pressure is building up, threatening to implode. So please find a graceful way to share the narratives that are smoldering inside you -- with the emphasis on the word “graceful.” I don’t want your tales to suddenly erupt like a volcano all over everything at the wrong time and place. You need a receptive audience and the proper setting. PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Piscean actor Javier Bardem said this to Parade magazine: “I don’t know if I’ll get to heaven. I’m a bad boy. Heaven must be nice, but is it too boring? Mayb e you can get an apartment there and then go to hell for the weekends.” I caution all you other Pisceans against pursuing this line of thought in the coming weeks. You may imagine that you can get away with sneaking away to hell for just a couple of days a week, but I don’t share that optimism. My advice is to rack your brains to drum up as much adventure as possible in safety zones and sanctuaries where you know for sure you’ll stay healthy and sane.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): “The I Ching counsels that if we are associating with others who are not our true peers,” says astrologer Caroline Casey, “our real allies cannot find us.” Please
Homework: Don’t get back to where you once belonged. Go forward to where you’ve got to belong in the future. Testify at Freewillastrology.com.
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