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JAN. 16-23, 2019


Summer Lee wants political action to go beyond marching







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JAN. 16-23, 2019 VOLUME 28 + ISSUE 3 Editor-In-Chief LISA CUNNINGHAM Associate Publisher JUSTIN MATASE Director of Operations KEVIN SHEPHERD Managing Editor ALEX GORDON Senior Writers RYAN DETO, AMANDA WALTZ Staff Writers HANNAH LYNN, JORDAN SNOWDEN Photographer/Videographer JARED WICKERHAM Digital Media Manager JOSH OSWALD Editorial Designer ABBIE ADAMS Graphic Designers MAYA PUSKARIC, JEFF SCHRECKENGOST Marketing and Promotions Coordinator CONNOR MARSHMAN Senior Sales Representative BLAKE LEWIS Sales Representatives KAITLIN OLIVER, NICK PAGANO Office Coordinator MAGGIE WEAVER Advertising Sales Assistant TAYLOR PASQUARELLI Circulation Manager JEFF ENGBARTH Featured Contributors REGE BEHE, GAB BONESSO, LISSA BRENNAN, LYNN CULLEN, TERENEH IDIA, CRAIG MRUSEK, CHARLES ROSENBLUM, JESSIE SAGE, STEVE SUCATO Intern JANINE FAUST Office Administrator RODNEY REGAN National Advertising Representative VMG ADVERTISING 1.888.278.9866 OR 1.212.475.2529 Publisher EAGLE MEDIA CORP.


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UMMER’S COLD. It’s the middle of January, the first truly cold winter day, and Summer is out among the snow flurries. She’s forgone her cheetah-print earmuffs, complete with cat ears, and she’s shivering. Even so, newly elected state Rep. Summer Lee (D-Swissvale) is braving the frigid temperatures and standing in the middle of Penn Avenue in East Liberty, her right fist raised high in the air. “My identity is absolutely necessary,” she says. Lee is the first Black woman from Southwestern Pennsylvania ever to hold a seat in Pennsylvania’s state legislature. Despite Allegheny County being home to more than 80,000 Black women for decades, those tens of thousands of women have never seen someone like them shaping policy in the state capitol. “You don’t need to change who you are to run,” says Lee. “We need you to sound like you sound. Because your background is integral.” Lee’s victory went beyond identity. Her district includes Braddock, Swissvale, Forest Hills, and Homestead; it’s about 70 percent white and 25 percent Black. Lee won her contested primary against a 20-year incumbent by 35 points, securing 67 percent of the vote. Black and non-Black voters clearly wanted a voice like hers: unapologetic and authentic in believing new voices are necessary to progress politics. “My identity absolutely matters. If I wasn’t a Black person, and poor, I might not see the importance of policies like mandatory minimums,” says Lee, in reference to prison sentences. And Lee is looking for more candidates who, like her, don’t conform to tradition. She is forming a political-action committee called UNITE PAC. The PAC has already garnered support from well-known organizers in the immigrant, criminal-justice, youth, education, and organized-labor communities. The PAC’s goal is to build a coalition of

candidates who can advocate and speak genuinely on issues like poverty, immigration, criminal justice, and rights for LGBTQ and disabled people. It’s the opposite of the Southwestern Pennsylvania Democratic status quo: the most broadly appealing candidate who moderates their policies in an attempt to please as many voters as possible. In that way, Lee is hopeful the PAC can make a real difference in Southwestern Pennsylvania’s political landscape. “The people are just so sick of these candidates, it shuts out regular people,” says Lee. “How do we help them? How do we raise money for these people?” To many, the election of Donald Trump was a bucking of the status quo. He spoke authentically, even if it was offensive or dishonest, and he had no prior political experience before running for president.

Take Lee’s background as an example. She graduated from Howard Law School in 2015, thinking she wouldn’t get involved in politics. But she campaigned for Hillary Clinton in 2016, joined the Democratic Socialists of America, and in 2017, worked to get Black candidates elected to the Woodland Hills School District board after school officials were caught on tape threatening Black students. And when she decided to run, she says she was fortunate to have strong and organized allies behind her, helping her navigate the process. In that way, UNITE is about helping candidates who might not be lucky enough to have the same support she had. The PAC will raise money and provide connections to nontraditional candidates, the ones inspired by injustices in our political system and deeply motivated to change them.

“YOU DON’T NEED TO CHANGE WHO YOU ARE TO RUN. WE NEED YOU TO SOUND LIKE YOU SOUND.” His ascendance was alarming to many, and a powerful force of resistance formed. The Women’s March gathered millions of people who were upset with Trump’s campaign. The political gains were historic two years later, with the Democrats flipping 40 seats in the U.S. House to take control of the chamber. But it didn’t fix every political problem perturbing the people who marched. Trump now has a legitimate check on his power, but many systems are still in control of conservatives who are aligned with the president. Lee thinks to push progress beyond resistance to figures like Trump, a more surgical strategy must be undertaken. “Even this year’s Women’s March has to mean more than just talking about building bridges in a speech,” says Lee.

But Lee says there are barriers to getting these types of people to run. She says political family dynasties who had easy access to run for political office have dominated in Pittsburgh. She says people without those connections have a hard time breaking into politics in the same way. “Where is the brochure to teach you how to run?” she asks. “How do we educate constituencies to let them know what their vote means? When I learn something, I teach somebody else, there is no shame in not knowing.” Lee says these non-traditional candidates can make a difference in politics, especially if they work together. If candidates who are Black, women, LGBTQ, immigrants, ex-felons, environmentalists, and other marginalized identities coalesce, Lee believes they will CONTINUES ON PG. 8




What we don’t need in the midst of struggle is shame for being human. -Brené Brown



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Summer Lee rallying with environmentalists in August 2018.

have the sway to actually shape policy. This sentiment has led several organizers to join the PAC, including Monica Ruiz of immigrant-rights group Casa San Jose, Brandi Fisher of the Alliance for Police Accountability, and Terri Minor Spencer of community group West End P.O.W.E.R. “There are no solid unified foundations for citizens to grab a hold of the political arena to make a difference,” says Spencer. “[At] UNITE, everyone has a seat at the table, a chance to make change. UNITE is not about empowering the good ole boys and forgetting the people making the difference.”


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Lee realizes the PAC’s focus on intersectionality might make her some enemies. Right-leaning media figures have demonized the terms “identity politics” and “intersectionality.” In June 2018, right-wing media personality Ben Shapiro said “intersectionality is a form of identity politics in which the value of your opinion depends on how many victim groups you belong to. At the bottom of the totem pole is the person everybody loves to hate: the straight, white male.” Lee doesn’t seem to care about this kind of characterization. As someone who grew up in a poor, Black community in North Braddock, she leans into that

identify and lets it shape her policy. Lee has spoken openly about what she calls “environmental racism.” The Mon Valley is still one of the most polluted regions in Pennsylvania. It’s also one of the poorest, and home to an increasing number of Black residents. On Jan. 9, a fire at U.S. Steel’s Clairton Coke Works led to an air-pollution advisory where Mon Valley residents were told to stay indoors. The Clairton Coke Works has been issued several clean-air violations over the years. Where many Southwestern Pennsylvania politicians have typically balanced their support for the region’s energy economy with more tepid environmentalism, Lee spoke boldly. On Jan. 9 she tweeted “If a restaurant breaks health department codes they’re shut down until they fix it. When a major polluter does it we’re supposed to just play in the house for a while??? This is unacceptable. ALL communities deserve clean air.” She sees opportunities for candidates to follow suit, advocating for whatever issue they are passionate about. She says poor communities in urban, suburban and rural Pennsylvania have all been marginalized, and to succeed, they must unite. “Building power together is the only way to survive,” says Lee. “That is what UNITE is about, recognize that commonality. That we are all trampled on until we work together. Human nature is to see the differences. UNITE is about finding the similarities.”

Follow senior writer Ryan Deto on Twitter @RyanDeto


Women’s March 2018 in Downtown Pittsburgh




WO YEARS AGO, millions of people across the U.S. took to the streets the day after the inauguration of President Donald Trump, protesting his misogynistic rhetoric and advocating for human rights. That tradition continues this year and Pittsburgh will be playing its part. Pittsburgh’s 2019 march is titled “Building Bridges Stronger than Hate.” Tracy Baton, director of the Women’s March on Pittsburgh, says community organizers came up with Pittsburgh’s theme after discussing how the city’s recent economic progress has not extended to certain neighborhoods like the Hill District and McKeesport. “We felt that building bridges was a metaphor we could use to talk about not just what had been done but about what needed done … the strength of Pittsburgh is not reaching everywhere and people

need to see that,” says Baton. Organizers also want to focus on connecting disadvantaged groups to advocate against islamophobia, transphobia, anti-Semitism, and other forms of hate. “When we have bridges built between those communities, hate cannot divide us,” says Baton.


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Nationally, the Women’s March has had trouble maintaining its own bridges. The organization was recently shaken by controversy after allegations of anti-Semitism against multiple leaders. One cofounder asserted that her Jewish

identity played a role in pushing her out of the organization in 2017. The Women’s March on Pittsburgh also faced division in the past. In 2017, some Black femme activists claimed the official march was denying queer and LGBTQ people a say in decisions, and hosted a separate rally the same day as the initial Women’s March on Pittsburgh. Celeste Scott, an organizer of the 2017 Our Feminism Must Be Intersectional Rally/March, feels the Women’s March on Pittsburgh has yet to promote intersectionality in tangible, longlasting ways. She wants a formal way for the Pittsburgh community at large to weigh in on organizers’ decisions as well as a bigger platform for trans and nonbinary people. “Everyone needs to be at the table intersectionally and given power to affect

outcomes. You cannot just check a box with someone’s identity but still further an agenda that doesn’t reflect their communities,” says Scott. “Outwardly facing, it does not seem that much intersectionality that has impactful effects beyond the March has been infused.” According to Baton, many people who get involved in the Women’s March on Pittsburgh go on to create a collective and engage with the community. Most recently, members worked with Bend the Arc Pittsburgh, a progressive Jewish group, to organize a march against Trump’s visit to the city following the Tree of Life mass shooting. She sees a positive, united way forward and hopes this year’s march embodies that. “In these times, as women, we know about the neighborhood issues that really matter,” she said. “We create a space where anybody can come out.”



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INVADED Brillobox in Bloomfield on Tue., Jan. 8, armed with a press pass

and Arvin Clay, my camera man. This was my first segment in a new series where I’ll be asking random Pittsburghers random questions. Since Brillobox is known for being a super hip club, I thought it would be amusing to ask some questions about the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Are the Steelers going to win the Super Bowl? (Note: The Steelers aren’t even in the playoffs.) Meet Marie and Jacob from Shadyside.

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No. (looks to Jacob)

Marie: (shrugs) I don’t know.

I dig further to find out that it’s not that they don’t like the Steelers, they just don’t like football. I move on to two dudes sitting at the opposite side of the bar. I approach holding my press pass like it’s an FBI badge. They are reluctant (smart boys) but agree in the end. Meet Zack and Devin from Lawrenceville!

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No. (laughing) Not at all.

They won’t, but I think they could. They have the skill.

Thank you. I love someone with hope! Then, a man named Matthew (from Bloomfield/Lawrenceville) stopped us.

MATTHEW: Are the Steelers even in the playoffs?

At this point I admitted that I’m not technically a “Sports Reporter” and I’m not sure about playoffs. In a final attempt for clarity, I ask the one and only Katie (Brillobox’s beloved bartender).

KATIE: I really don’t care.

Catch Gab Bonesso around ‘Tahn and on Twitter @gabbonesso





“The game requires no reading and minimal counting skills … there is no strategy involved: players are never required to make choices, just follow directions. The winner is predetermined by the shuffle of the cards.” — ‘TIMELESS TOYS: CLASSIC TOYS AND THE PLAYMAKERS WHO CREATED THEM’ BY TIM WALSH


WAS reintroduced to this diabolical

game of chance after searching for a simple board game I could play with my kids, which would be their first. I gravitated toward fewer intricacies in gameplay, which meant fewer fights between easily distracted contestants. I fondly remembered whimsically traipsing along the fantastical map, lush with mouthwatering treats. What I didn’t remember was how painfully boring the game is.

DO AS YOU’RE TOLD! Created in 1949 by an adult polio patient trying to entertain the children hospitalized alongside her, Candy Land combines a deck of cards with endless suffering. Pick the top card from the deck and DO AS YOU’RE TOLD! Reveal a blue block, move two steps to the blue space. Flip a card with two orange blocks, move to the second of two orange spaces. You’re cruising now! Draw the gingerbread men. Sorry, your car’s been repossessed, your house foreclosed on and your candyperson is back at the beginning of the map. My kids love this game — probably the same reasons why the other million

copies are sold each year. So we play. The gameplay is harder for adults to swallow. There’s no strategy or planning involved. I’m not nearly as entertained as my kids by the prospect of ending up at the Peanut Brittle House, the Gumdrop Mountains, or the Lollipop Forest. I’m excited to pull the card that’s going to get me to the end of this game in the most expedient way. It probably doesn’t help that I’ve never won. Screw you, Candy Land! But the more I think about the game, the more I appreciate it. It actually mirrors life quite well. You’ll spend immense amounts of time and money on planning the perfect vacation; you’ll learn a marketable skill at an accredited institution; you’ll pore over that recipe for a delicious shrimp scampi; but the actual returns aren’t anything you have much control over. Your vacation could be ruined by rain. You may hate your chosen career. You may burn that dinner. Life is really just flipping the top card off the deck and making the best of what you got. Candy Land isn’t as much about achieving a goal as it is learning how to weather the storm. And sometimes that storm gets more complicated when your kids can’t remember whose turn it is. Come on, guys. There’s only three of us playing.

Follow digital media manager Josh Oswald on Twitter @gentlemenrich PITTSBURGH CITY PAPER JAN. 16-23, 2019





NEW SUSHI restaurant is bringing fresh fish and Asian fusion to East Liberty. In the midst of holiday pandemonium, Mola held its first nights of service. The restaurant is named after the Ocean Sunfish, Mola mola, a magnificently cartoonish creature, fit with a bullet-shaped body and disproportional fins. Mola mola lives in both temperate and tropical seas, an omnivore mindset that mirrors Mola’s exploratory menu. Mola describes itself as “a blend of Asian flavors and taste.” While the menu sports Asian classics, such as edamame, bao buns, and poke bowls, there are some outliers. Steamed PEI mussels appear with the small plates; steak, guacamole, and roasted jalapeño grace the list of hand rolls; and vegetarians are treated with ahimi, ahi without the tuna (a substitute made from tomato). Inside, a similar aesthetic follows. The front is filled with low, glossy tables and over-cushioned chairs, furnishings fit for an ornamented hotel lobby. Two perplexingly rustic hightops stick out in the back, topped with jagged wooden planks. Even with only a week and half of service under their belt, Mola was fairly crowded for a Tuesday night. Two servers flitted between tables, reciting the features, hopping behind the bar, and playing host. I surveyed the menu carefully and decided on a few items to share: two handrolls (spicy salmon and yellowtail with a roasted jalapeño), a pork belly bao, and the Mola tuna poke. Before the sushi arrived, I was warned that it would be “different.” Mola features hand rolls that were meant to be picked up like a miniature,


White sangria, hand rolls, and a hot and spicy chicken rice bowl at Mola

open-ended burrito. So, I threw chopsticks aside and dove in. Out of the two rolls, spicy salmon was the best. The fish was not minced. Instead, it was a poke-style cut. Spice was scattered on top of the meat, rolled in nori with rice and a creamy sauce. The nori was the most surprising. It was thin and crispy, so frail it almost flaked off the roll. My poke bowl was made up of tuna, seaweed salad, guacamole, and sesame seeds, served over rice. It was strikingly basic. No heavy-handed portions of


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toppings and sauces. The raw flavors intertwined to reach stunning harmony, simplicity allowing flavors to shine. Fresh fish is one of the restaurant’s specialties, flown in every two days from New York. The freshness was immediately clear. Nothing I tasted had any trace of a

salty, oceanic taste or faded color. It was vibrant and remarkably delicious. The pork belly bao was a spot-on triumph. Steamed bread, filled like a taco, maintained a thin skin outside a fluffy, melt-in-my-mouth bread. It was slightly sweet, balancing out with pickled cucumber. Crunchy peanuts dusted the top of the pork, the belly tender and juicy. It finished with a tang of cilantro. Mola is bringing fresh, Asian flavors to a thriving landscape of restaurants in East Liberty.



Electronic soundtrack

Exposed lighting

Pre-dinner bread

Music sets the mood of any meal and Mola does not hold back. DJ-generated house beats fill the room. The bass thumps filled the otherwise quiet restaurant with a lively soundtrack.

In the dining room, strings of exposed lights hang from the ceiling. The effect was quite … cool. Did it fit with the rest of the decor? Not really. But it fit with Mola’s vibe.

Continuing the mash-up of cuisines, servers deliver two small rolls of crusty bread to the table after ordering. It’s a fascinating blend of culinary traditions, finding warm, French-inspired loaves at a sushi restaurant.





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last 20-odd years, it’s likely you’ve seen a Cosmopolitan. Its popularity and longevity have led many booze scholars to deem it a classic, giving it status comparable to the Martini, Daiquiri, Manhattan, and others. This reputation is deserved — when made well, the “Cosmo” is a satisfying, unabashedly pleasant drink. Whether it’s a dive bar or dinner party, you’ll probably find one in somebody’s hand. It has a guileless charm that’s difficult to deny. Despite its enduring appeal, it’s not universally beloved. Critics cite an array of flaws, from its use of vodka (still a pariah in certain quarters of the cocktail cognoscenti), dependence on cranberry juice (“Too sweet! Not fresh!”), and its association with young, inexperienced drinkers (few things are as damaging to a drink’s prospects as being labeled a “kiddie drink”). Regardless, the Cosmopolitan is considered a standard. And if there’s anywhere you should be able to find a standard drink; it’s a chain restaurant. A quick peek at the TGI Fridays website revealed that they offer three variations, so it was safe to assume they knew their Cosmos. It was also safe to assume I was going to take at least one of them for a test-drive. At the first location, I decided the best strategy was simplicity, so I went with a “regular” Cosmo. Looks-wise, it hit

all the marks: A solid pour of pale-pink liquid cradled in a tall, stemmed glass and topped with a carefully-curled strip of lemon peel. Unfortunately, the drink tasted thin and flat. When I asked about the ingredients, I discovered a lack of lime juice was to blame.

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A LITTLE BLAST OF CITRUS IS CRUCIAL FOR THIS DRINK. At location No. 2, I got a virtually identical drink. Again, when I asked about the specifics of the recipe, lime juice was absent. It was apparently not an oversight, but done by design. Whatever the reason, TGIF seems to have opted for a lime-less Cosmo, and that’s too bad. A little blast of citrus is crucial for this drink. Interestingly, the two restaurants also used different brands of vodka, as well as different types of orange liqueur. This didn’t drastically affect the drink, but it’s a heads-up that things can vary from place to place. What didn’t vary was the unfailing friendliness of the bar staff (something I’ve noticed at every chain restaurant I’ve visited). It’s a reminder that a good bartender beats a bad drink every time.

Follow contributing writer Craig Mrusek on twitter @DoctorBamboo PITTSBURGH CITY PAPER JAN. 16-23, 2019





Taiwanese, Japanese & Chinese Specialties





LEON’S CARIBBEAN 823 E WARRINGTON AVE., ALLENTOWN 412-431-5366 / LEONSCARIBBEAN.COM Family owned and operated since December 2014. Here at Leon’s, we take pride in our recipes and quality of dishes. Simple menu with all the traditional dishes! Leon Sr. has been a chef for 30+ years, mastering the taste everyone has grown to love and can only get at Leon’s.


5326 BUTLER ST., LAWRENCEVILLE 412-252-2337 / ALLEGHENYWINEMIXER.COM Wine bar and tap room in Pittsburgh’s Lawrenceville neighborhood. Offering an eclectic list of wine by the glass or bottle, local beer, craft cocktails, cheese and cured meats, good times and bad art.


1124 Freeport Rd, Fox Chapel


330 N. SHORE DRIVE, NORTH SIDE (412-500-7530) AND 244 W BRIDGE ST., HOMESTEAD (412-462-6400) / BARLOUIE.COM We’re your neighborhood bar, where you can kick back and be the real you, with the help of an amazing staff, great music, handcrafted martinis and cocktails, local and regional drafts, incredible wines and a huge selection of bar bites, snacks, burgers, flatbreads and sandwiches. Come in after work, before the game, late night at night, or any time you need a quick bite or a night out with friends. Bar Louie. Less obligations. More libations.


1025 BROAD ST., NORTH VERSAILLES 412-829-2911 / BROADSTBISTRO.COM Broad Street Bistro is a neighborhood restaurant offering daily specials. ALL food is prepared fresh and made to order. It is family friendly with a special kids’ menu.


4400 FORBES AVE., OAKLAND 412-622-3225 / THECAFECARNEGIE.COM An excellent dining experience from James Beard Semi-Finalist, Sonja Finn featuring a locally-focused menu, full service dining, and espresso and wine bar.


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1125 PENN AVE., STRIP DISTRICT 412-586-4850 / COLONYCAFEPGH.COM Whether stopping in for a weekday lunch, an afternoon latte or after-work drinks with friends, Colony Cafe offers delicious housemade bistro fare in a stylish Downtown space.


1910 NEW TEXAS ROAD, MONROEVILLE/PLUM 724-519-7304 / EIGHTYACRESKITCHEN.COM Eighty Acres Kitchen & Bar offers a refined,

modern approach to contemporary American cuisine with a strong emphasis on local, farm-to-table products.


5310 BUTLER ST., LAWRENCEVILLE 412-408-3083 / FULLPINTBREWING.COM Full Pint Wild Side Taproom is Full Pint Brewing company’s Lawrenceville location and features a full service bar, huge sandwiches and half-priced happy hour. Open 4 p.m.-midnight, Mon.-Fri., and noon– midnight on Saturday. Check us out on Facebook for upcoming shows and events.


3400 HARTS RUN ROAD, GLENSHAW 412-767-3500 / HARTWOODRESTAURANT.COM A hidden treasure in the Pittsburgh suburbs. Outdoor dining, full bar, eclectic atmosphere. Casual elegance at its finest. Daily specials. Open Tuesday through Saturday. Hope to see you soon!


1400 SMALLMAN ST., STRIP DISTRICT 412-552-0150 / LIDIAS-PITTSBURGH.COM Lidia’s Pittsburgh is a warm Italian restaurant offering signature classics from Lidia Bastianich. Featuring brunch, lunch and dinner menus as well as private dining.

MERCURIO’S ARTISAN GELATO AND NEAPOLITAN PIZZA 5523 WALNUT ST., SHADYSIDE 412-621-6220 / MERCURIOSGELATOPIZZA.COM Authentic Neapolitan pizza, artisan gelato, and an inviting atmosphere are just a small part of what helps create your experience at Mercurio’s Gelato and Pizza in Pittsburgh. It’s not your standard pizza shop; in fact, this isn’t a “pizza shop” at all.


4770 LIBERTY AVE, BLOOMFIELD 412-904-1640 / PADTHAINOODLEPITTSBURGH.COM This new café in Bloomfield features Thai and Burmese specialties. Standards

like Pad Thai and Coconut Curry Noodle are sure to please. But don’t miss out on the Ono Kyowsway featuring egg noodle sautéed with coconut chicken, cilantro and curry sauce.


201 SOUTH HILLS VILLAGE MALL, BETHEL PARK 412-835-8888 / SAGAHIBACHI.COM Saga in the South Hills is now under new management. Stop in for exciting table-side preparations and the famous shrimp sauce. Or sit in the sushi-bar area for the freshest sushi experience, with both traditional preparations and contemporary variations.


242 51ST ST., LAWRENCEVILLE 412-586-4441 / SPIRITPGH.COM/SLICEISLAND Every day we bake fresh focaccia from unbleached flour, pull our own mozzarella, and curdle our own ricotta to put on your pizza with fresh toppings from the best local farms, butchers, and purveyors.


1211 BRADDOCK AVE., BRADDOCK 412-271-1022 / SUPERIORMOTORS15104.COM Thoughtfully prepared food, drawing inspiration from Braddock, its people, its history and its perseverance. The cuisine best represents the eclectic style which has become a trademark of Chef Kevin Sousa. Fine dining in an old Chevy dealership with an eclectic, farm-to-table menu and a community focus.


660 WASHINGTON ROAD, MT. LEBANON 412-668-0773 / TOTOPOMEX.COM Totopo is a vibrant celebration of the culture and cuisine of Mexico, with a focus on the diverse foods served in the country. From Oaxacan tamales enveloped in banana leaves to the savory fish tacos of Baja California, you will experience the authentic flavor and freshness in every bite. We also feature a cocktail menu of tequila-based drinks to pair the perfect margarita with your meal.

Look for this symbol for Sustainable Pittsburgh Restaurants, committed to building vibrant communities and supporting environmentally responsible practices. Love Pittsburgh. Eat Sustainably. www.EatSustainably.org



SEXIST CARTOONS IN POST-GAZETTE DRAW IRE FROM PITTSBURGHERS The P-G fired its last cartoonist because they “wanted clever and funny instead of angry and mean.”






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Sculptures made from straws and other waste at the Carnegie Science Center




AST YEAR WAS a big one for the plastic straw. It became a cause célèbre, subject to environmental campaigns to end its use, due to excessive and preventable pollution caused by the straws. Starbucks, McDonald’s, Hilton, and other companies have announced bans on plastic straws that will gradually be put into place. Looking around coffee shops, there is usually at least one person with a metal straw. Kim Kardashian got into a fight on Instagram over plastic straws. Straw Forward, a new installation at the Carnegie



Science Center’s RiverView Café, will show off sculptures made from straws and other pieces of plastic waste. The project, created by Sustainable Pittsburgh, collected the waste from over two dozen participating restaurants and businesses. The aim of the project is to draw attention to the damage plastic waste does to the environment, but also to encourage restaurants to move toward more sustainable practices. Ginette Walker Vinski of Sustainable Pittsburgh believes that straws are a good target because of their ubiquity. “With straws, it is just so easy to

visualize how much waste is generated almost every time you order a beverage, a disposable plastic straw is plunked into your glass whether you asked for it or not,” says Walker Vinski. Many of the sculptures in the exhibit are of sea creatures made from various waste materials; straw clownfish in a straw sea anemone, an otter constructed from mouse pads, a turtle out of bubble wrap. The design concepts were led by Anthony Closkey of Shift Collaborative and constructed by Shift Collaborative, Sustainable Pittsburgh, and volunteers.

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Keep your own dentist! An otter being constructed for the exhibit

“The Straw Forward exhibit is a visual way to communicate the impacts of plastic waste on the natural environment and to offer ideas for what we can do as individuals to minimize that impact,” says Walker Vinski. As discussions around plastic straws have grown more popular, disability rights advocates have been quick to point out that banning all plastic straws is not the answer. The flexibility of plastic straws is essential to many with mobility issues for whom metal and paper straws are insufficient. Walker Vinski notes that Straw Forward will incorporate these topics in the exhibit. “We can’t have a conversation about plastic waste without involving the disability rights community,” she says. Straws became a hot topic of discussion last year after a video of a sea turtle with a straw stuck up its nostril went viral. Straws are much harder to recycle than other plastics because their small size and weight make it easy for them to literally fall through the cracks of recycling equipment. Because of this, they are more likely to end up in the ocean, where they break down into microplastics. According to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 99 percent of seabird species will have ingested plastic by 2050. The Straw Forward exhibit will run at the Science Center through Feb. 15, after which Seneca Valley High School plans to use them in a student project by incorporating them into resin furniture. Walker Vinski notes that some of

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the participating restaurants have begun to switch over to straws made of other, more compostable materials, but also notes that there are many other ways restaurants can reduce waste including donating excess food, using biodegradable takeout containers (or letting patrons bring containers from home), and cooking in ways that use the entirety of a meat or produce.

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Reducing waste can seem like a daunting task. It’s so ingrained in our culture to walk out of a store with a plastic bag or get takeout in a Styrofoam container. Changing everyday materials feels like changing an entire lifestyle. “This is something Sustainable Pittsburgh is working on, by participating in regional policy initiatives and working with business and community decision-makers to advance sustainability-oriented ways of thinking,” says Walker Vinski. Sustainable Pittsburgh also runs the website Sustainable Pittsburgh Restaurant, which lays out the standards required for a restaurant to be sustainable and provides a guide to which local restaurants have specific sustainable practices. “We want to make the sustainable option the easy one,” she says.

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Follow staff writer Hannah Lynn on Twitter @hanfranny PITTSBURGH CITY PAPER JAN. 16-23, 2019



Alex Hartle aka Tied Heart




LAYING OFF the word anhedonia, which is the inability to feel pleasure, An Hedon, the debut album from Alex Hartle aka Tied Heart, revolves around the joylessness and indifference associated with depression. Throughout ten disparate tracks, Hartle examines his struggles with the depressive disorder and how he relates to the world around him. The dynamic, upbeat sound of An Hedon, which contrasts with the album’s overall theme, was written over four years and recorded in six months by Hartle himself, singing and playing every instrument but bass, played by Hartle’s cousin. A mix of aggressive guitars, loud,



forceful vocal delivery, and synthesizers, the album drops Jan. 18. Ahead of the release, Pittsburgh City Paper chatted with Hartle about depression, the album, and fear.

a songwriter. So, I think part of it’s just natural. As I learn more things as a guitarist and a writer, I kind of stumble upon new sounds, and it’s fun for me to push myself and try new things.

LISTENING TO AN HEDON, ALL TEN SONGS HAVE A DIFFERENT FEEL. WHY IS THAT? I hate listening to albums that all kind of sound the same throughout. Like getting to [track 8] on an album and it all just blends together. And from a writing standpoint, I find it fun to challenge myself and get a different sound, you know, just exploring things because I’m definitely still learning and growing as

WAS IT HARD TO BALANCE EACH SONG’S INDIVIDUAL SOUND WHILE ALSO HAVING THEM MESH TOGETHER COLLECTIVELY? It’s something that I worried about a little bit, especially the song “The Fear.” I personally worried that it would stick out a little bit, because it’s a little more aggressive and rock-oriented than the other ones. But I think as a whole it works pretty well. So, I didn’t stress

about it too much, but I certainly think my writing has a certain style that sort of unites them all together. Just the way I sing and play guitar — even if the textures are different from song to song —keeps it kind of consistent. YOU PICKED THESE INTERESTING WORDS LIKE “GOSSAMER” AND “ERSATZ” AS SONG TITLES. WHAT WAS YOUR THOUGHT PROCESS BEHIND THAT? I would say naming things is my least favorite part of making music. Truly some of those titles didn’t happen until I had already started recording. I was like, “I can’t call this 1NG, it needs a name,” so

a lot of times it’s a word from within the song. I do try and pick something that’s representative of the song as a whole. Like you mentioned “Gossamer,” which evokes something that’s really delicate. That’s something that I mention in the song – something that is easily breakable and delicate – and that song specifically is about a struggle in establishing communication between my wife and me, and me realizing [that I had depression.] I wasn’t sharing what all was going on with me and that’s because depression somewhat takes away your ability to do that. Even when I thought I was being honest, I was not, fully. So that relates to the idea that depression can feel like it doesn’t exist, but as the line says, “we feel it just the same.” HOW DO YOU FEEL LIKE MUSIC HAS HELPED YOU? Sometimes it did, sometimes it didn’t. When it did, songwriting is completely cathartic to me. Singing, specifically, especially when I belt and hit a note, the physical feeling of that is a great release. And being able to get my thoughts and feelings out in song is hugely helpful. But at the same time, there was a period of about eight months – and this has happened multiple times, but that was just the longest one – where I barely touched a guitar. I didn’t write any songs, I didn’t really do anything, because in my head I wasn’t allowed to or wasn’t capable. That’s where the song “Inert” comes from; it came from that period.

PHOTO INTERN WANTED We are looking for a student photojournalist with an artistic eye. Editorial work will include shooting for news, music and arts, both in print and online. Weekend availability is required. Prior student newspaper work and an outgoing personality a plus. Send a résumé and a link to an online portfolio to photographer Jared Wickerham, jwickerham@ pghcitypaper.com.


8 p.m. Fri., Jan. 18. 565 Live, 565 Lincoln Ave., Bellevue. tiedheart.com

be even though I’ve recorded them and it’s a final product. “Ersatz” is my favorite song that’s on the album. I love playing it. I like listening to it. Then I would say

“HOPEFULLY, THEY HEAR SOMETHING THAT THEY RECOGNIZE OR DESCRIBES SOMETHING THEY FELT.” If people are to take away anything from listening to the album, I hope that they hear something, that if they have felt that way, even if it’s not clinical depression, hopefully, they hear something that they recognize or describes something they felt. Knowing that someone else feels that way, or having it described a certain way, hopefully, that’s helpful. PERSONALLY, WHAT ARE YOUR STANDOUT SONGS ON AN HEDON? I think “Gossamer” is probably my favorite song, potential-wise and me playing it on the guitar. It’s funny, I still think of the song as a concept and the potential that it has and what it could

“The Fear” came out a lot better than I expected. I was really pleased because I had that fear that this could go horribly wrong and be completely out of whack with the other nine songs. TELL ME A LITTLE MORE ABOUT “THE FEAR.” WHY IS IT SO DIFFERENT FROM THE OTHER TRACKS? That is one of the few that is not about depression. It is specifically related to what happened in Charlottesville in 2017. I’m from Virginia, I have friends who went to the University of Virginia, which is in Charlottesville, so I spent some time there. And my first job out of college was working for the Civil War Commission, so I was very much steeped in that

world of the monuments and those issues. That weekend happened to be this annual trip with my best friends where we go rent a cabin and get away from the world. And it was a strange thing, I guess following the election, I, and probably a lot of people of my political persuasion, were just kind of waiting for the shoe to drop. When Charlottesville happened, it was like: There it is, it’s happening, America’s falling apart. It’s not that difficult for me to see a group of white men chanting and carrying torches through a southern town and feel disturbed by it. You don’t need to know that much history to be disturbed by it. So, the song is about how there are these very real emotions that people have, these angers and these fears, and what’s really scary is when they start to act on them. The second half of the song, specifically the chorus, is kind of connecting it to a different historical event. You think about Kristallnacht, things like that, and unfortunately, we experienced it in Pittsburgh with the shooting at the synagogue. It’s not an abstraction at this point. Also, part of that is some self-laceration. While these things are happening, I’m thinking, “Could I be doing more? What can I be doing? Why am I not doing anything?” So there’s a lot that goes into it. Hartle premieres An Hedon at 565 Live on Jan. 18.

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Follow staff writer Jordan Snowden on Twitter @snowden_jordan PITTSBURGH CITY PAPER JAN. 16-23, 2019




AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): In May 1927, Aquarian aviator Charles Lindbergh made a pioneering flight in his oneengine plane from New York to Paris. He became instantly famous. Years later, Lindbergh testified that partway through his epic journey he was visited by a host of odd, vaporous beings who suddenly appeared in his small cabin. They spoke with him, demonstrating a sophisticated understanding of navigation and airplane technology. Lindbergh’s spirits were buoyed. His concentration, which had been flagging, revived. He was grateful for their unexpected support. I foresee a comparable kind of assistance becoming available to you some time soon, Aquarius. Don’t waste any time being skeptical about it; just welcome it.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): More than four centuries ago, a Piscean samurai named Honda Tadakatsu became a leading general in the Japanese army. In the course of his military career, he fought in more than a hundred battles. Yet, he never endured a major wound and was never beaten by another samurai. I propose we make him your inspirational role model for the coming weeks. As you navigate your way through interesting challenges, I believe that like him, you’ll lead a charmed life. No wounds. No traumas. Just a whole lot of educational adventures.

ARIES (March 21-April 19): In 1917, leaders of the Christian sect Jehovah’s Witnesses prophesied that all earthly governments would soon disappear and Christianity would perish. In 1924, they predicted that the ancient Hebrew prophet Moses would be resurrected and speak to people everywhere over the radio. In 1938, they advised their followers not to get married or have children, because the end of civilization was nigh. In 1974, they said there was only a “short time remaining before the wicked world’s end.” I bring these failed predictions to your attention, Aries, to get you in the mood for my prediction, which is: all prophecies that have been made about your life up until now are as wrong as the Jehovah Witnesses’ visions. In 2019, your life will be bracingly free of old ideas about who you are and who you’re supposed to be. You will have unprecedented opportunities to prove that your future is wide open.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19):

Writing at The Pudding, pop culture commentator Colin Morris reveals the conclusions he drew after analyzing 15,000 pop songs. First, the lyrics of today’s tunes have significantly more repetitiveness than the lyrics of songs in the 1960s. Second, the most popular songs, both then and now, have more repetitive lyrics than the average song. Why? Morris speculates that repetitive songs are catchier. But in accordance with current astrological omens, I encourage you Capricorns to be as unrepetitive as possible in the songs you sing, the messages you communicate, the moves you make, and the ideas you articulate. In the coming weeks, put a premium on originality, unpredictability, complexity, and novelty.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Movie critic Roger Ebert defined the term “idiot plot” as “any film plot containing problems that would be solved instantly if all of the characters were not idiots.” I bring this to your attention because I suspect there has been a storyline affecting you that in some ways fits that description. Fortunately, any temptation you might have had to go along with the delusions of other people will soon fade. I expect that as a result, you will catalyze a surge of creative problem-solving. The idiot plot will transform into a much smarter plot.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): In 1865, Prussia’s political leader, Otto von Bismarck, got angry when an adversary, Rudolf Virchow, suggested cuts to the proposed military budget. Bismarck challenged Virchow to a duel. Virchow didn’t want to fight, so he came up with a clever plan. As the challenged party, he was authorized to choose the weapons to be used in the duel. He decided upon two sausages. His sausage would be cooked; Bismarck’s sausage would be crammed with parasitic roundworms. It was a brilliant stratagem. The proposition spooked Bismarck, who backed down from the duel. Keep this story in mind if you’re challenged to an argument, dispute, or conflict in the coming days. It’s best to figure out a tricky or amusing way to avoid it altogether.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): An imaginative 27-year-old man with the pseudonym Thewildandcrazyoli decided he was getting too old to keep his imaginary friend in his life. So he took out an ad on eBay, offering to sell that long-time invisible ally, whose name was John Malipieman. Soon his old buddy was dispatched to the highest bidder for $3,000. Please don’t attempt anything like that in the coming weeks, Cancerian. You need more friends, not fewer—both of the imaginary and non-imaginary variety. Now is a ripe time to expand your network of compatriots.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): In December 1981, novice Leo filmmaker James Cameron got sick, fell asleep, and had a disturbing dream. He saw a truncated robot armed with kitchen knives crawling away from an explosion. This nightmare ultimately turned out to be a godsend for Cameron. It inspired him to write the script for the 1984 film The Terminator, a successful creation that launched him on the road to fame and fortune. I’m expecting a comparable development in your near future, Leo. An initially weird or difficult event will actually be a stroke of luck.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Psychologists define the Spotlight Effect as our tendency to imagine that other people are acutely

attuned to every little nuance of our behavior and appearance. The truth is that they’re not, of course. Most everyone is primarily occupied with the welter of thoughts buzzing around inside his or her own head. The good news, Virgo, is that you are well set up to capitalize on this phenomenon in the coming weeks. I’m betting you will achieve a dramatic new liberation: you’ll be freer than ever before from the power of people’s opinions to inhibit your behavior or make you self-conscious.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): What North America community is the farthest north? It’s an Alaskan city that used to be called Barrow, named after a British admiral. But in 2016, local residents voted to reinstate the name that the indigenous Iñupiat people had once used for the place: Utqiaġvik. In accordance with astrological omens, I propose that in the coming weeks, you take inspiration from their decision, Libra. Return to your roots. Pay homage to your sources. Restore and revive the spirit of your original influences.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): The Alaskan town of Talkeetna has a population of 900, so it doesn’t require a complicated political structure to manage its needs. Still, it made a bold statement by electing a cat as its mayor for 15 years. Stubbs, a part-Manx, won his first campaign as a write-in candidate, and his policies were so benign—no new taxes, no repressive laws—that he kept getting re-elected. What might be the equivalent of having a cat as your supreme leader for a while, Scorpio? From an astrological perspective, now would be a favorable time to implement that arrangement. This phase of your cycle calls for relaxed fun and amused mellowness and laissez-faire jauntiness.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Trees need to be buffeted by the wind. It makes them strong. As they respond to the pressure of breezes and gusts, they generate a hardier kind of wood called reaction wood. Without the assistance of the wind’s stress, trees’ internal structure would be weak, and they might topple over as they grow larger. I’m pleased to report that you’re due to receive the benefits of a phenomenon that’s metaphorically equivalent to a brisk wind. Exult in this brisk but low-stress opportunity to toughen yourself up!


Pittsburgh’s lone liberal talkshow host for 30+ years Listen live every weekday at 10 a.m. at lynncullen.pghcitypaper.com 20




NAME: Randy Kovitz, Lawrenceville TITLE: Fight Director RECENT PROJECTS? Hamlet (Pittsburgh Public Theater), The Hard Problem (Quantum Theatre), Nomad Motel (City Theatre Company), Hir (barebones productions), Up And Away (CLO Cabaret), Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Pittsburgh Playwrights) NEXT UP? Dark Play, directed by Adil Mansoor at Carnegie Mellon University ARE YOU PART OF A PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATION? I am unaffiliated. I trained for seven years with a master and don’t belong to any organized group. I just do my work. WHAT DO YOU DO? First job is to keep the actors safe. Second job is to make sure the story is told and create the director’s vision in a way that is dynamic and interesting and actable. DOES THIS HAPPEN IN REHEARSAL OR BEFORE? I read the play and research the period, but I’m a practical person. The best way to stage a fight scene is to ask the actor, “What do you want to do here? What is your instinct? Punch him in the face, or run away?” Their impulses usually come from the most creative part of their brain. CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM

HOW DID YOU START? When I was a drama student at Carnegie Mellon, they brought in British fight director B.H. Barry. After I graduated and moved to New York, I did a real old-school apprenticeship with him, assistant teaching with him at Julliard, Circle In The Square, NYU, private classes, every show he choreographed. IS IT SOMETHING THAT YOU FELL IN LOVE WITH THE FIRST TIME YOU DID IT? Yeah. I was not very athletic — a drummer, kind of a hippie. B.H. got me doing things I could never do. I had never thought of myself in that way. I discovered a new part of myself. I honestly got in touch with a darker part of myself, and, when you’re a young kid, that darkness is really really attractive. My attitude towards fights has changed completely. At first, I really

Randy Kovitz

Backstage is a new series introducing the people behind the scenes of Pittsburgh’s arts and culture events. wanted to shock the audience. I still want to, but for a different reason. WHAT CHANGED? I was carjacked and beaten pretty badly in Los Angeles in 1993. I still have a steel plate in my face. I was about to start the remount of a play called The Kentucky Cycle. I went into the first rehearsal, and I said, “I’ve changed the way I work. I want the audience to be completely repulsed by this violence, I want them

to feel how much a punch hurts, I want the pain to last, I want them to be revolted, and I want to make a statement about that.” ARE ACTORS GENERALLY PRETTY EXCITED TO DO FIGHTS? It runs to both extremes. They’re either really excited or they’re terrified. Either one works. I’ll ask everyone to embrace the Zen concept of beginners’ minds, so that they come in as if they know nothing. When they do, it pays off because they’re able to discover new. DO YOU TEACH? I would love to! I have previously. I’m looking to teach more. I’m going to talk to a few places to see if I can do some workshops.

WHAT KIND OF FIGHTS DO YOU LIKE BEST? I just like fights that have surprises. I like the classic fight where the underdog is outmatched and somehow comes from behind. I like fights that incorporate unexpected elements. I’ve used mops and buckets, books … Once when I was also acting as a preacher, at one point, I closed my bible and hit somebody with it. In Superior Donuts at Pittsburgh Public Theater, a fight was won by using a sack of flour to bludgeon the midsection of a character with a stomach ulcer. Those are the kind of things I love because the audience thinks one thing, and you completely pull the rug out from under them.







COUPLE YEARS AGO, George Hoover began cutting down his work hours and planning for retirement. He’d spent his life working in different corners of the arts and entertainment industry: as a lighting designer for stage productions in Florida after college; as a co-producer for jazz concerts on public television in New Jersey; as the technology officer at the Pittsburgh-based NEP Group, which provides technical and production support for broadcasts like the Olympics



and Oscars. But after decades in the industry and three Emmys to his name, Hoover was ready for his second act and he had an idea. He loved theater and wanted to create a centralized location online for listings, reviews, and news focused entirely on stage productions in Pittsburgh. That particular project fizzled out, but it wasn’t long before his idea led him to some likeminded locals developing a similar site called Pittsburgh in the Round, a volunteer-based online magazine

focused on all-things theater in Pittsburgh. Now approaching its fifth birthday, Pittsburgh in the Round boasts more than a dozen writers, two interns, a marketing director, and editor-in-chief. Hoover is its senior writer, assistant editor, and one of the most frequent contributors on the site. Like Hoover, many of the writers at Pittsburgh in the Round have worked in the industry for years. Founder Mara Nadolski has a BFA in theater design and technology from West Virginia

University and, when not running PITR, works in different capacities in productions around the city, including as assistant director for last year’s Stupid F*cking Bird at 12 Peers Theater. Among the staff are creative writing majors, actors, newspaper journalists, marketing experts, and other theater professionals. What unites them seems to be a simple passion for the theater happening here, regardless of prestige and prominence. Visitors to PITR this month will see a review of Pittsburgh Classic Players’ staging of Twelfth Night, a preview of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s In The Heights at Pittsburgh Musical Theater, a posting for a local collaboration opportunity, and a review of Theatre Factory’s Nuncrackers. That diversity in company size, venue, and style is important to Nadolski.


Sat., Jan. 19. 6 p.m. Teamster Temple, 4701 Butler St., Lawrenceville. $40 for general admission; $25 for artists and students with valid ID. pghintheround.com

“The whole point is to level the playing field,” says Nadolski. Whether the company is big or small, the production experimental or traditional, every production gets the same treatment. That approach tends to bolster the status of the smaller productions and make the bigger ones more accessible. On Jan. 19, Nadolski and her staff of volunteers will celebrate the site’s fifth birthday with an open party at the Teamster Temple in Lawrenceville, featuring music from Joanna Lowe and the Broken Word, The Zells, as well as food and drinks. It provides an opportunity for Nadolski to thank her fans, supporters, and writers — there are some contributors she has only met in person once — and to look ahead at what the next five years may bring. At the top of the list for Nadolski, who pays for site management and events like this out-of-pocket, is compensating her writers. She’s cautiously optimistic for the future. Nadolski says that above all else, the people in this theater scene are resilient. “Pittsburgh always manages to find a way,” says Nadolski.


“An explosion of energy, raw emotion, and irresistible storytelling.”








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Kegan Heiss and Heather Shore of Hemlock for Socrates



AVING KIDS changes everything. Sometimes

it means putting off a career move or waiting to take that big overseas trip. For Kegan Heiss and Heather Shore, the married indie-rock duo behind Hemlock for Socrates, it meant taking a break from music. “We got back to it once the kids got a little older,” says Shore, whose two children with Heiss are now 7 and 9 years old. Now, eight years after their 2011 album Waveforms, the two are releasing Barometrics on Jan. 17 with a release party at Glitter Box Theater. The event includes a screening of a film shot to accompany the new album, which was conceived and produced by Shore, Heiss, and his brother, Alaric, who has a background in film and animation.



The ďŹ lm contains a series of stories that go with each track and, as Heiss puts it, features visual motifs that pair with melodic or structural pieces in the music. “It’s quite compelling,â€? says Shore. “We had some family members over who had a 6-year-old, and she was enthralled. If you can keep the kids involved, it’s deďŹ nitely going to keep the adults engaged.â€? The album adds another milestone in their decades-long relationship, both musically and as a couple. Now in their 40s, the two have been playing together in various bands since they met in high school. In 2010, they moved to Pittsburgh from Houston to be closer to family in their native Connecticut. After trying to organize another band, they decided to remain a duo.


7 p.m. 460 Melwood Ave., Oakland. $5. theglitterboxtheater.com

Radiohead and The Knife are among the band’s chief inuences, which are somewhat reected in the haunting style of Waveforms. “We’re sort of maudlin, maybe,â€? laughs Shore. Heiss and Shore’s current taste in music is an eclectic playlist featuring LCD Soundsystem and the indie-pop duo AM & Shawn Lee, as well as Cibo Matto, a pair of female Japanese musicians known for songs about food, noted chiptune artist and ďŹ lm scorer Disasterpeace, and composer Philip Glass. Their approach to making music comes off as a true collaborative effort. Shore contributes most of the guitar work while Heiss handles the bass. Both appear as vocalists and work on keyboard and drum programming.

As for the lyrics and songwriting, the distinctions are less clear, as the two bounce ideas between each other. “It’s usually the most successful when we can’t remember who wrote what,â€? says Heiss. For Barometrics, Heiss says they wanted to move away from the traditional sound of the alternative or indie record scene, where it’s usually “three young guys in a band playing shows at clubs.â€? Guitar and keyboard feature heavily, but they also incorporate Shore’s background in classical music and opera. In addition to the music, they wanted the album to cover heavier themes. “Barometrics really is a lot about the changes in the world in the last decade or two, particularly the media and ability to be aware of so much more, and simultaneously how people are more and more isolated and self-perpetuating,â€? says Heiss. “In politics and personal life, there are all of these vehicles now to selfreinforce and I think a lot of what we were trying to do, both with the music and ďŹ lm, is address that.â€? Shore says the album also covers their own personal experiences, particularly how their lives have changed as they got older. In a time when musicians constantly churn out content in an attempt to stay relevant, Hemlock for Socrates views their extended break as giving them more time to pour over the album, include mastering it themselves and making the ďŹ lm. And if you like Barometrics, there’s more to come. “Because it’s been so long between these two albums, we actually have two more in process,â€? says Shore. “We’re hoping to get one more out this year and maybe come up with something to make it interesting.â€?


Follow senior writer Amanda Waltz on Twitter @AWaltzCP

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wednesday¡ february 13¡7pm $20, $25, $30, $34, $39 The Palace Theatre 724-836-8000 ¡ thepalacetheatre.org FREE PARKING FOR EVENING & WEEKEND SHOWS! PITTSBURGH CITY PAPER JAN. 16-23, 2019




A fancy dog being fancy

Out of all the nationally televised sporting events, the Westminster Dog Show is easily the most confusing. It might not seem like a sport, but its participants certainly refer to it as one. The new Netflix docuseries 7 Days Out follows the exciting, dramatic, hectic, and emotional lead-up to major events, like Westminster, NASA’s Cassini mission, and the League of Legends gaming tournament. The first episode, focusing on Westminster highlights several competitors — the humans and the dogs. Some are veterans, “born into 7 DAYS the sport,” as they OUT IS NOW say. Their family STREAMING has been showing ON NETFLIX. the same breed of dog for generations. Others are more unlikely, having by chance adopted an incredibly beautiful dog. It’s incredible, sure, to see all these pretty and perfectly coiffed dogs running around like princesses, but it’s also deeply unsettling. The way the owners and handlers talk about the dogs is borderline repulsive. They need to have certain proportions, coloring, and behaviors to be considered the “best of their breed.” The episode is not as complex as it could be. It would add another layer to hear from dissenters of dog shows, and dog breeding in general. California recently passed a law that pet stores can only sell dogs that come from shelters or rescue organizations. What 7 Days Out proves is that it’s interesting to watch people who are extremely passionate about what they do, even if what they do is breed fancy dogs to look even fancier. •




Fyre Festival was a glorious disaster.




ATCHING THE DISASTER of Fyre Festival unfold on social media was a sight to behold. Hundreds of people who’d paid thousands of dollars for a luxury music festival in the Bahamas arrived to find hurricane relief tents as lodging and cheese on toast as a meal. Attendees started posting pictures of their disbelief, and the whole thing became an instant source of jokes and fascination. Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened, a Netflix documentary directed by Chris Smith, follows the timeline of the festival from optimistic inception to calamitous execution. Along the way, the movie reveals a staggering tower of corruption and deceit. Fyre Festival was thought up by slippery young mogul Billy McFarland to promote his talent-booking app Fyre, which he founded with rapper Ja Rule. The festival quickly ballooned out of control, morphing into an amalgamation of McFarland’s dreams of luxury and success, like someone who watched too much of The Fabulous Life of… as a kid. He wanted a beautiful festival in a beautiful place for beautiful people. “We’re selling a pipe dream to your average loser,” he says to his team. Even if people couldn’t attend the festival, McFarland wanted them to be jealous of it. As the planning progresses, it becomes clear that there is not the money, infra-

structure, or time needed to pull off the event. At every turn, people waved red flags with varying degrees of urgency. A logistical consultant pointed out that the island couldn’t fit the planned number of attendees. “Instead of thinking about models, you kind of have to think about toilets,” he says.


Another consultant recounts being asked by McFarland to perform oral sex on a customs agent so that they would release supplies. As much as the festival was a disaster from the outside, it was even worse on the inside. Luckily, McFarland was obsessed with documenting what he thought was a genius venture, so there is plenty of footage of his hilariously misguided plans. Fyre follows a close timeline from the early planning to the aftermath, building tension along the way. The more the employees, consultants, videographers, and other team members describe the chaos within, the more fascinating it gets. They describe the long, stressful hours, doing tasks that were way outside their job

descriptions, all while not getting paid because the company was out of money. Several described it as the worst period of their life. Festival-goers don’t even arrive until an hour into the movie, and by that point, even though we know how the story ends, there’s palpable tension and almost giddy anticipation. It’s like watching a house of cards get built by someone with butter on their hands. Though it’s a documentary, Fyre bares similarity to The Social Network in the way it builds up and then tears down a smug young mogul. Smith even takes Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross scores from other projects to emphasize the impending doom. When the whole thing crashes, it’s not quite as satisfying to watch as the tweets mocking it in real time. But it’s not tragic either, save for the native Bahamians who never got paid for their extensive physical labor. In one scene, a local restaurant owner explains, through tears, how she emptied her bank account to pay people. It’s awe-inspiring, really, to see the toxic potion of wealth, greed, and delusion in action. In the aftermath, McFarland was soon arrested for fraud, but got out on bail and started a new scam that specifically targeted Fyre Festival victims. There’s footage of that too, because McFarland asked his videographer to film it, still thinking he would walk away clean.



BIO: “I am an artist who has earned a living with paintbrushes most of my life, world citizen, North Sider, and Casey Droege’s mother.” WHERE CAN WE FIND YOU? LindaWallenStudios.com Wallen is currently participating in the Carnegie International project Fruit and Other Things, in which local artists create hand-lettered text paintings of works that were rejected for past exhibits. Each painting is displayed for a day, then given away to visitors. TELL ME WHAT YOU’RE WEARING? What I am supposed to wear, something dark, mostly black. We get to wear these special aprons that were made for our project. Red eyeglasses and we got permission to wear red shoes, so I don’t feel totally in a mausoleum. We consider this our scriptorium [desk] and we are monks — and it looks just like the scriptorium you see in Europe. We feel very monk-like but the red shoes help us feel less like monks. ARE YOU WEARING ANYTHING THAT’S A PERSONAL ELEMENT, BEYOND THE UNIFORM? My red glasses have become my trademark — these are 1984 vintage. They have come back in style.


Linda was photographed at Carnegie International’s Fruit and Other Things by Lena Clayton and Jon Rubin.


NOW, I AM PERSONALLY VERY JEALOUS OF YOUR BLUE HAIR, THAT’S A LOOK I WANT. When I realized that my hair is mostly white, that was just a blank canvas. And so this is the color that works the best.

ARE YOU WEARING SOMETHING THAT IS A GIFT FROM SOMEONE ELSE OR TO YOURSELF? The gold ring that my husband gave to me that says in Breton “da vi ken” which means “For Life.” And I usually wear a pinky ring that my daughter helped get for me in Chicago. I usually wear something that reminds me of my daughter and that’s one of the things. I didn’t wear it today because I wear gloves [to paint] and I didn’t want to rip off the glove and lose the ring.

THE RED SHOES, TELL ME ABOUT THEM. They have different color elastic, from Spain. I bought them in Barcelona, one of my favorite cities in the world. Full of artists, it is really a cool place and Spanish shoes are really good, comfy shoes.

DO YOU HAVE SOMETHING THAT WAS A GIFT TO YOURSELF? The shoes, usually the shoes. And the glasses, I buy glasses instead of jewelry. My jacket. It’s black, cropped with nice pockets. It is from a designer in

California that I like to support, she designs for people like me. Stylish but not skinny. WHAT IS IT LIKE PAINTING IN THIS POPULAR AREA OF THE CARNEGIE INTERNATIONAL? It reminds me of my stint as a street artist in New Orleans, for five years in Jackson Square. I was peddling portraits, quick portraits for tourists. It is very similar to that because you’re doing your work and you’re concentrating but you have to keep an antenna to the public. You have to engage with them, tell them what you’re doing, how and what the possibilities are. Interacting with the public has been a real scream. [Laughs] Who knew it would be so popular? I knew we would have to talk what we’re doing, explain that “Yes we are artists, we are hired to do this.” The funny thing is when people grab a blank piece of paper and say “Okay it’s my turn now.” Or when there are people lined up and almost fist fighting over a particular title because it has

some meaning for them. Or when people grab a piece off the wall [where they are on display and drying] without permission. Now it is clear you have to take a painting from the bin. ARE THERE EVER PAINTINGS LEFT IN THE BIN? Not since we started. [Laughs] Maybe in the morning we can find one or two in the bin or Wednesday morning. Then the line starts. People are coming back, often. One woman took five at a time. We almost called security. She said she was doing her Christmas shopping. Mostly it is people who are really engaged, excited and it’s delightful and meaningful - it’s my favorite part of the International. But I am a little biased. The whole International is really up there. WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU? I am doing a mosaic in a school in Paris, with the children. Then I will take a group of artists to Oaxaca in Mexico for Dia de los Muertos (Day of Dead) in October/November.

Follow featured contributor Tereneh Idia on Twitter @Tereneh152XX PITTSBURGH CITY PAPER JAN. 16-23, 2019



Alisha Wormsley’s There Are Black People in the Future billboard




ITTSBURGH ARTIST Alisha Wormsley received plenty of attention last year when her East Liberty billboard work, There Are Black People in the Future, was removed. It evoked outcry from those who saw the removal as an act of censorship and indicative of the gentrification taking over the neighborhood. Now, Wormsley has created a

new program for local artists as a direct response to the controversy. Wormsley, in collaboration with the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council’s Office of Public Art (OPA), announced the launch of the There Are Black People in the Future Artwork-in-Residence program. The program seeks proposals that explore the relevance of the phrase “There Are Black People in the Future”


Thu., Jan. 17. 5:30–6:30 p.m. CLP-East Liberty. 130 S. Whitfield St., East Liberty. thereareblackpeopleinthefuture.com.



in various communities and is open to artists, teachers, and community members who live and/or work in East Liberty, Bloomfield, Garfield, Larimer, and Homewood. “As OPA stated at the time of the text’s removal, [Wormsley’s] work is a positive affirmation that Black people are part of our community, including the past, the present, and the future. Placed in East Liberty, where change has come at a rapid and frankly disorienting pace, her work takes on new meaning,” stated OPA director, Sallyann Kluz, in a press release. “By putting the artwork in residence with

the community, this initiative aims to foster critical conversation about the transformation of our neighborhoods and build effective avenues for advocacy, healing, and activism. As an artwork-in-residence, There Are Black People in the Future makes manifest OPA’s vision for artist-led engagement in the civic, social, and public realms.” Ten applicants will receive $1,200 micro-grants to complete their proposals, along with funds for additional materials and related expenses, which will be rewarded on a case-by-case basis. Wormsley and Jon Rubin, the artist and Carnegie Mellon University professor

behind The Last Billboard project that featured There Are Black People in the Future, will host a workshop for awardees. Over the course of the program, they will also organize several community gatherings inviting speakers, guests, and stakeholders to explore the meaning of the There Are Black People In The Future text and why the billboard was taken down. Final projects will be presented and discussed in fall 2019. Wormsley also plans to collect data from the program that will be used to inform the direction of a future art installation. The program attempts to generate something positive out of a situation that shook the Pittsburgh arts community and East Liberty. Neighborhood leaders and activists have expressed anger over Black, lower-income residents being forced out by development and rent increases. Those problems were only exacerbated when We Do Property, the company that owns the building atop which the billboard was displayed, removed it over objections to the content last spring. We Do Property owner Eve Picker tried to justify the company’s actions in a statement to Pittsburgh City Paper


Alisha Wormsley

saying they were contacted by people in the local community who “found the message offensive and divisive.” She added that There Are Black People in the Future violated the terms of a lease agreement stating that billboards could not be used for items that are distasteful, offensive, erotic, or political.

Although she was later invited to reinstall the work, Wormsley chose not to. Wormsley was especially affected by a community meeting prompted by the billboard’s removal. Held at East Liberty’s Kelly Strayhorn Theater, the event included a panel discussion and an open conversation about “art,

public space, and how we talk about art as a community.” “When we held the community meeting to explain the events of the text’s removal, it seemed that the censorship of the sign was almost a metaphor for the way community members felt they had been treated and unheard,” says Wormsley. Afterward, she recalls running into Pittsburgh musician and activist Blak Rapp Madusa, who commented on how tough the situation is because the Black community is “never given the chance to think about what they want.” “That really stuck with me,” says Wormsley. While the program serves as a reminder of what happened to her work, Wormsley wants to use the experience as a way to move forward and ensure that peoples’ voices are heard. “I’m hoping that this project will start a precedent of listening to the community, thinking of creative ways to process and work together to find solutions that support what the community wants,” says Wormsley. Those interested in submitting proposals should visit thereareblackpeopleinthefuture.com. Application deadline is Feb. 11, 2019.



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AN YOU BE alone with yourself? And do you enjoy your own company? This is what Juergen Fritsch, who records music under the moniker Silverkeim, explores in his debut album, The Company You Keep In The Empty Moments. The multi-layered sound from the instrumental release draws influences from a combination of alt-rock, electronic, psychedelic, and minimalist classical music. Similar to Explosions in the Sky, Moby, Mono, and Portishead, The Company You Keep In The Empty Moments is sometimes soulful, sometimes cinematic, and sometimes gloomy. Yet, the entirety of the album is so artfully blended together that it’s hard to tell where one track ends and another begins. Fritsch says that, “If you’re in the mood to reflect and think about more existential topics, this is the soundtrack to do so.” This concept of self-reflection and alone time rolled over from his creative process. The German-born, Point Breeze-based musician wrote, produced, recorded, and played every instrument for The Company You Keep... But, when Fritsch started working on the project two and a half years ago, he had no intention of it being a solo endeavor. “I usually prefer to work with other people because it takes you in new directions and you get kind of inspired by other people’s ideas. But also you make


Silverkeim aka Juergen Fritsch


Available on all streaming platforms Thu., Jan. 17. silverkeim.com

compromises and hold back a little bit of what you bring to the table,” says Fritsch. “When it’s your solo project, you have complete freedom to express yourself artistically any way you want.”

Since Fritsch had free-reign he intentionally chose to leave lyrics out, allowing for a deeper personal connection when listening to the album. “Usually when you have lyrics or vocals, you are led a certain way by the lyrics, you think about whatever the writer [sings] about,” says Fritsch. “I like the idea of having instrumental music because it doesn’t pull you in a direction but leaves it completely up to you. All you have to go by is the title and the music.” The goal for The Company You Keep…was not just to capture Fritsch’s feelings and emotions but to capture the state of personal reflection: The feeling of being by yourself, working on yourself, discovering what you like about yourself, and what you don’t like about yourself. Do you like the company you keep in the empty moments?

Although Fritsch has been making music for the last 20 years, this is his first album to be recorded and released. Fritsch’s focus has been M*Modal, a Squirrel Hill-based tech company he co-founded. Because of this, Fritsch is in the position where he doesn’t need to make a lot of money from the release. All the proceeds from the sale of his physical album will go to Rainbow Kitchen Community Services of Pittsburgh. “I’d much rather use the opportunity to raise money for them because it’s a good purpose and I’d really like to support the local community,” says Fritsch. << Volunteers at Rainbow Kitchen // CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM





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WED., JANUARY 30 THE BRUMMIES 6:30 P.M. SMILING MOOSE SOUTH SIDE. All-ages event. $10-12. 412-431-4668 or ticketfly.com.

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WED., JANUARY 30 LIQUID STRANGER 8 P.M. REX THEATER SOUTH SIDE. Over-18 event. $25-29. 412-381-1681 or greyareaprod.com. With special guests LSDREAM, Champagne Drip, G-Rex & Lucii.

WED., JANUARY 30 THE BROOK & THE BLUFF 8 P.M. CLUB CAFÉ SOUTH SIDE. Over-21 event. $10. 412-431-4950 or ticketweb.com/opusone.

THU., JANUARY 31 MOTHERFOLK 7:30 P.M. CLUB CAFÉ SOUTH SIDE. Over-21 event. $10. 412-431-4950 or ticketweb.com/opusone. With special guests Stay Outside & Sam Stucky.

THU., JANUARY 31 JD SIMO 8 P.M. HARD ROCK CAFE STATION SQUARE. $10-12. 412-481-ROCK or ticketfly.com.

FRI., FEBRUARY 1 PITTSBURGH SONGWRITERS SHOWCASE 6:30 P.M. CLUB CAFÉ SOUTH SIDE. Over-21 event. $10. 412-431-4950 or ticketweb.com/opusone.

FRI., FEBRUARY 1 QUIET RIOT 8 P.M. JERGEL’S RHYTHM GRILLE WARRENDALE. $28-40. 724-799-8333 or ticketfly.com. With special guests Dying Breed & Storm Dragon.

FRI., FEBRUARY 1 FLASHPOINT RUN 10:30 P.M. CLUB CAFÉ SOUTH SIDE. Over-21 event. $5. 412-431-4950 or ticketweb.com/opusone. With special guests Ryan Hoffman and


The Pioneers & The Down Above.

SAT., FEBRUARY 2 PEG + CAT LIVE! 11 A.M. BYHAM THEATER DOWNTOWN. $25-45. 412-456-6666 or trustarts.org.

SAT., FEBRUARY 2 LEE ROBINSON & ISKA 7 P.M. CLUB CAFÉ SOUTH SIDE. Over-21 event. $15. 412-431-4950 or ticketweb.com/opusone.

SAT., FEBRUARY 2 SAMMY KERSHAW 7:30 P.M. THE PALACE THEATRE GREENSBURG. $68.50-88.50. 724-836-8000 or thepalacetheatre.org. With special guests Aaron Tipton & Collin Raye.

SAT., FEBRUARY 2 CORY WONG 9 P.M. REX THEATER SOUTH SIDE. All-ages event. $20. 412-381-1681 or greyareaprod.com.


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SUN., FEBRUARY 3 L.L. BEAN FAMILY-FRIENDLY HIKE 2 P.M. NORTH PARK PIE TRAYNOR FIELD NORTH PARK. All-ages event. Free event (registration required). 412-350-4636 or llbean.com/pittsburgh.

MON., FEBRUARY 4 THE BROTHER BROTHERS 8 P.M. CLUB CAFÉ SOUTH SIDE. Over-21 event. $10. 412-431-4950 or ticketweb.com/opusone. With special guest Arlo Aldo.


open tuesday-sunday

TUE., FEBRUARY 5 BASIC YOGA FLOW 7 P.M. NORTH PARK ROSE BARN NORTH PARK. $10-40. 724-935-1766 or alleghenycounty.us/parkprograms.

TUE., FEBRUARY 5 THE HAVANA CUBA ALL-STARS 7:30 P.M. BYHAM THEATER DOWNTOWN. $25-40. 412-456-6666 or trustarts.org.

family skate | 4:30-6:00 pm | every wednesday





^ Thu., Jan. 17: Women in Film and Media Pittsburgh Winter Mixer


Among the list of single-use disposable items that are negatively impacting our ecological system are plastic straws. Their waste cannot be recycled by traditional means and over time will break down into tiny bits of microplastics, which can clog the bellies of marine life. From June to October of 2018, instead of throwing straws away and hoping for the best, 37 Pittsburgh-based restaurants, nonprofits, and businesses collected straws to contribute to Straw Forward as part of the Sustainable Pittsburgh Restaurant program. Over 25,000 straws were collected and combined with discarded plastic-based items pulled from the banks of the



Allegheny River and combined with other repurposed materials to create the Straw Forward Art Installation, which runs from Jan. 15 to Feb. 15. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Carnegie Science Center, 1 Allegheny Ave., North Side. Free with admission to Science Center. sustainablepghrestaurants.org/site/ straw-forward/


Although Women in Film and Media Pittsburgh is a membership organization, all are welcome to attend the Winter Mixer. This event offers an opportunity to mingle with those looking to improve the status and portrayal of women in screen-based media. Find out about upcoming events, programs and the 2020 March film competition while enjoying complimentary appetizers, a cash bar, and raffle items. RSVPs are encouraged to gauge attendance. 7-10 p.m.

Mullaney’s Harp and Fiddle, 2329 Penn Ave., Strip District. Free. wifmpit.org/ event/wifm-winter-mixer


When the Burning Man festival began 33 years ago, it was held on a beach in San Francisco, had 35 participants, and free admission. Now, it takes place in the middle of the Nevada desert, has nearly 70,000 participants, and a hefty admission fee. Safe to say that the festival — which is all about inclusion, community, and self-reliance — is not what it once was. Elon Musk attends! But for Pittsburghers looking for that kind of community, there is the Pittsburners Meetup at the Ace Hotel. Did you know that there are Burning Man-adjacent festivals all over the country? The closest one is Frostburn in West Virginia. 7 p.m. 120 S. Whitfield St., East Liberty. acehotel.com/pittsburgh


A five-minute stage performance could result in $100 in your pocket. That’s thanks to the reinstated monthly I Love Lyrics (ILL) Showcase at Howlers. Interested parties can compete in a hip-hop and R&B open mic where the winner leaves with cash in hand. Signups begin at 7:30 p.m. and close promptly at 8:30 p.m., no exceptions! So make sure to show up early if you’d like to participate. The panel of judges, which changes monthly, will rate performances based on delivery, stage presence, and lyrics. Performers in this event will be eligible to compete in the December showcase, where the cash prize is $500. 7:30 p.m. Howlers, 4509 Liberty Ave., Bloomfield. $10. local412pgh.com


MADtv sometimes gets a bad rap as nothing more than a grosser, dumber, less sophisticated (ha!) version of Saturday


^ Fri., Jan. 18: Moonspeaker

Night Live. But for 15 (non-consecutive) seasons, it relished that role, as it churned out major league talent and some wicked funny gems along the way. A key part to that successful run was Aries Spears, best sonations of Jay-Z, LL known for his impersonations Cool J and DMX (the best one), as well as ee Esher. Performing fictional rapper Emcee at Pittsburgh Improv v for a run of six shows this weekend, Spearss has kept his comedy chops and impression-game n-game tight during his post-MADtv Dtv career with a busy stand-up touring schedule edule and small but memorable roles in movies and TV. It’s not exactly cerebral ral stuff, but if, say, the name Emcee e Esher still makes you laugh, Spears’ ears’ act shouldn’t be missed. sed. 8 p.m. Continues through ough Sun., Jan. 20. Pittsburgh rgh Improv, 166 E. Bridge e St., Homestead. 21 and nd over. $25. improv.com/ m/ pittsburgh

> Thu., Jan. 17: Aries Spears



Light up the backbox when Kickback Pinball Cafe presents the Knockou Tournament. Hosted by PGH Pinball, the event pits teams of three to four players against one another for a flipper-flicking, ball-locking, replaygenerating good time. After each team takes a machine, players try to win by earning the fewest strikes. Six strikes

The Citizen Science Lab, follows the film. 7-9 p.m. 1 Schenley Park, Oakland. Free tickets with regular admission. phipps.conservatory.org

and you’re out, so bring your best game. All players are welcome. If you’re looking for more pinball competition, head back to Kickback on Sat., Jan 19 and watch the Pennsylvania State Pinball Championship. 7 p.m. 4326 Butler St., Lawrenceville. $10. kickbackpgh.com



Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens screens Inventing Tomorrow as part of its monthly Environmental Film Series. Directed by Laura Nix, this new documentary focuses on six teen inventors from around the world as they create solutions to global environmental threats. Follow the journey as they prepare their projects for the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF), an event considered the Olympics of high-school science fairs. A discussion led by Dr. Andre Samuel, president and CEO of

In September, Moonspeaker teased pop-folk fans with singles “Cut Me Loose” and “Gravity,” the first track and title song, respectively, from its unreleased debut album. Now, the full release is finally here. To premier Gravity and celebrate the album release, Moonspeaker, along with Two Coins Trio, is bringing its electric rhythms and evocative lyrics to Club Cafe for a night of indie-pop space jams. 10:15 p.m. Club Cafe, 56 S. 12th St., South Side. $10. clubcafelive.com



A large-scale development was planned for the ShurSave IGA at Liberty Avenue and Main Street, but developers recently pulled out. For community members, CONTINUES ON PG. 34








THURSDAY Lettuce 7 p.m. The Rex Theater, South Side. rextheater.net

FRIDAY OHMME, Fig, Dinosoul 7 p.m. The Mr. Roboto Project, Bloomfield. therobotoproject.com


^ Fri., Jan. 19: Inventing Tomorrow

SATURDAY Grails, Helen Money 7 p.m. Smiling Moose, South Side. smiling-moose.com

SUNDAY Vacationer 9 p.m. Spirit Lodge, Lawrenceville. spiritpgh.com

MONDAY Jeremy Denk 7:30 p.m. Carnegie Music Hall, Oakland. chambermusicpittsburgh.org

TUESDAY Helene Augustine, Bitter Whiskers, Elliot Sheedy 7 p.m. Club Cafe, South Side. clubcafelive.com

WEDNESDAY Gregory Alan Isakov 8 p.m. Mr. Smalls Theatre, Millvale. mrsmalls.com




affordable-housing advocates, and city planners, this provides a great opportunity to showcase what the Bloomfield Gateway can become. The Bloomfield Development Corporation hosts a morning and afternoon event, where participants can discuss and break into groups to come up with proposals for a redesign. These ideas could have an impact on future development in the area. Better pedestrian features could be added, more bike lanes, or maybe even a nice small park. Design consultants from Studio for Spatial Practice will guide attendees and affordable-housing developer ACTIONHousing is sponsoring the event. Free childcare will be provided for those who RSVP, and a light meal will be available during workshops. Two more meetings are scheduled for February. 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. 4900 Friendship Ave., Bloomfield. Free. bloomfieldnow.org


Want to learn how patriarchy and capitalism affect body image? Mettā: A Healing Arts Community hosts a workshop looking at how media and marketing pressure us to look a certain way in the interest of profit and control. Described as “part-history lesson, part-rant, and part self-love ritual,” the event seeks to undo some of the damage done by these systems. The workshop is presented by grizzemily and Nicole of Fair Moans, a Pittsburgh-based, sex-positive collective that specializes in accessible, inclusive sex education and discussion, as well as

Conversations, a new series at The Shop aims to bring positive discussions toward neighborhoods that are “often flooded with negative press.” The first event, hosted by Michelyn Hood and Brian Cook, features DJ Nate da Phat Barber, and focuses on Homewood and the Hill District. 4 p.m. 621 N. Dallas Ave., Homewood. theshop.org



^ Sat., Jan. 19: Charles David Richards at All About Will

products, locally-made gear, and accessories. 1:30-4 p.m. 5118 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $20. mettapgh.com


It’s difficult for a city to shake its own popular narrative, regardless of how widespread it is. Pittsburgh is still battling its reputation as a grimy steel town, despite the fact that manufacturing sizzled out decades ago. For the city’s historically black neighborhoods, it’s been difficult to shake the negative perceptions some have of them, despite their vibrant and thriving communities and art scene. NeighborHOOD

Shakespeare is the most famous writer in the English language. Everyone knows his words and stories, but while his basic biography is known, much of the playwright’s life remains a mystery, leaving other writers to creatively fill in the gaps. All About Will, a set of one-act plays at Carnegie Stage, explores two different aspects of Shakespeare’s lore. Friended by Shakespeare, written and performed by Charles David Richards, follows the life of one of Shakespeare’s friends and acting company members. Mrs. Shakespeare, Will’s first & last love, written and performed by Yvonne Hudson, weaves Shakespeare’s writing into a story about his wife Anne before and after his death. 8 p.m. Continues through Sun., Jan. 20. 25 W. Main St., Carnegie. $5-15. carnegiestage.com


“Is this what hell is like?” vocalist A.C. Hall asks in the first few seconds of “Dirtminer,” the opening track of Night Vapor’s new album 1000 MILES OF MUD. It’s a punishing introduction — sludge-paced, heavy, aggressively discordant — so the question isn’t totally out of bounds. But this sort of


^ Sat., Jan. 19: Night Vapor

dissonance is where the Pittsburgh fourpiece thrives. For the past five years, they’ve been writing challenging, heavy, smart rock in the realm of Swans (though with shorter songs). With the ten songs on MUD, released on Corpse Flower Records in December, Night Vapor crystalizes the deranged, clever, flat-out weird sound it’s been cultivating since inception. Catch the new stuff live at Brillobox, with noisy favorites Tanning Machine and Come Holy Spirit, plus relative newcomers TV2000. 8 p.m. Brillobox, 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. 21 and over. $10. brilloboxpgh.com


Heroin and opioid painkiller addiction rates have skyrocketed across America in recent years — the state of Pennsylvania alone reported more than 5,000 deaths from overdose in 2017. Heroin’s Grip, a documentary directed by Emmy-award winning producer Conrad Weaver, sheds a poignant and personal light on the ongoing national crisis. The film follows four families living in Frederick County, Maryland, whose lives have been permanently changed by addiction. The recently released film will screen at Pittsburgh’s Hollywood Theater for one night only, exploring the

perspectives of both current and recovering users as well as those trying to support them. John Shinholser, president of the McShin Foundation, calls the film “the best, and I mean best, current film about opiate addiction and the family/community impact, but inclusive of authentic recovery.” A Q&A with director Conrad Weaver follows the screening. 7 p.m. 1449 Potomac Ave., Dormont. $6 for seniors/children 2-11. $7 for adults. heroinsgrip.com


panel discussion of the film Undeterred. The documentary examines how towns on the U.S.-Mexico border respond to the humanitarian fiasco brought on by increased border enforcement and militarization. The film follows community resistance in the rural border town Arivaca, Arizona, where residents have mobilized to defend the rights of and provide aid to migrants. The event includes a panel discussion with representatives from Casa San José, a local Latino community resource and welcome center. 6:30 p.m. 460 Melwood Ave., Oakland. Pay-what-you-can or $10-$15 suggested donation. theglitterboxtheater.com



Glitter Box addresses the country’s immigration crisis with a screening and ^ Tue., Jan. 22: Know Your Roe Trivia PHOTO: LORIE SHAULL

Roe v. Wade legalized abortion in 1973. The court ruled 7-2. “Jane Roe” was a fictional name created to protect the identity of plaintiff Norma McCorvey. Why all the facts? Just tryin’ to help you win trivia, friends. Roe v. Wade Cocktails for a Cause & Know Your

Roe Trivia, hosted by Planned Parenthood of Western Pennsylvania, celebrates the 46th anniversary of the landmark decision. Bring a friend (or three) to Brillobox and show off how much your team cares about reproductive rights. Even if you lose, remember: Abortion is still legal, so everyone leaves a winner, and with 10 percent of food and drink sales benefiting PPWP, you’re drinking for a good cause. 6-9 p.m. 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $5 suggested donation. (Facebook search “Roe v. Wade Cocktails”)


The Mr. Roboto Project hosts the opening date of Daddy Issues’ winter tour with Leggy and for that, we should be thankful. Nashville trio Daddy Issues released its debut full-length Deep Dream and immediately garnered praise for its smart songwriting and grungy production (the hot/cold dynamics, clean/lo-fi production have a distinct Loveless vibe). Get on board with the menacing slow-burner “Dog Burning.” Leggy brings a little more speed and energy to the table with charismatic surf-punk tracks that clock in around the 2:30 mark. Start with “Kick The Habit” from the selftitled record. Finally, local lo-fi solo project Space Buns Forever kicks things off with smart, beautiful minimalist guitar and vocals. It’s a heck of a lineup. 7 p.m. Mr. Roboto Project, 5106 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $10 advance/$12 door. therobotoproject.com •





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Notice is hereby given that New Choice Home Deco intends to apply to the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for a new National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit for industrial waste from their existing granite fabrication facility on Campbells Run Road in Robinson Twp, Allegheny County. This application will be pursued in accordance with the NPDES Application for Individual Permit to Discharge Industrial Wastewater Instructions (3800-PM-BCW0008a). Persons desiring additional information, or who wish to provide comment concerning this permit application should contact New Choice Home Deco at (412) 567-0596, or DEP at the following address: Clean Water Program, DEP Southwest Regional OfďŹ ce, 400 Waterfront Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15222, or by telephone: (412) 442-4000, by February 9th, 2019.

Home for Rent Heart of Millvale 3 bdrms, full tiled bathroom. Large Kitchen and Living room with fenced in yard and carport. Pets Allowed with owner approval and deposit. Full basement with washer and dryer. Walking distance to everything.Rent: $950 per month + Utilities Call or email Diane at 412-303-3805 radacoy@zoominternet.net

Thomas Hauke P.O Box 536 Plumsteadville, PA 18949 Notice is hereby given that Articles of Incorporation were ďŹ led with and approved by the Department of State of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on December 19, 2018 for the purpose of obtaining a CertiďŹ cate of Incorporation for a business corporation organized under the Business Corporation Law of 1988, as amended. The name of the corporation is Nabalo Company. The purpose for which it was organized is to operate a retail operation thru, among other venues and those ancillary activities thereto and to conduct any and all lawful activities as prescribed by and within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

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THE BOARD OF PUBLIC EDUCATION OF THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF PITTSBURGH Sealed proposals shall be deposited at the Administration Building, Room 251, 341 South Bellefield Avenue, Pittsburgh, Pa., 15213, on February 5, 2019, until 2:00 P.M., local prevailing time for:

PGH. ALLDERDICE HIGH SCHOOL Concrete and Asphalt Repairs General Prime PGH. ALLDERDICE HIGH SCHOOL Stair Tower Painting and New Stair Treads General Prime PGH. LANGLEY K-8 Corridor and Classroom Ceilings and Lighting General, Electrical and Asbestos Abatement Primes PGH. SPRING HILL K-5 Restroom Renovations General, Plumbing, Mechanical and Electrical Primes Project Manual and Drawings will be available for purchase on January 7, 2019 at Modern Reproductions (412-488-7700), 127 McKean Street, Pittsburgh, Pa., 15219 between 9:00 A.M. and 4:00 P.M. The cost of the Project Manual Documents is non-refundable. Project details and dates are described in each project manual. We are an equal rights and opportunity school district.



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THE BOARD OF PUBLIC EDUCATION OF THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF PITTSBURGH Sealed proposals shall be deposited at the Administration Building, Room 251, 341 South Bellefield Avenue, Pittsburgh, Pa., 15213, on February 12, 2019, until 2:00 P.M., local prevailing time for:

PGH. BANKSVILLE K-5 Wireless Access Upgrades Structured Cabling Prime PGH. MIFFLIN PREK-8 Canopy General and Electrical Primes PGH. MILLER PREK-5 Masonry Restoration General and Asbestos Abatement Primes PGH. SCHILLER 6-8 Restroom Renovations General, Plumbing, Mechanical, Electrical and Asbestos Abatement Primes PGH. SOUTH HILLS 6-8 Restroom Renovations General, Plumbing, Mechanical, Electrical and Asbestos Abatement Primes

PGH. SPRING GARDEN ECC Restroom Renovations General, Plumbing, Mechanical, Electrical and Asbestos Abatement Primes PGH. WEST LIBERTY K-5 Addition & Renovations General, Plumbing, Mechanical, Electrical and Asbestos Abatement Primes PGH. WESTWOOD K-5 Art and Therapeutic Room Renovations General, Plumbing, Mechanical, Electrical and Asbestos Abatement Primes

Project Manual and Drawings will be available for purchase on January 14, 2019 at Modern Reproductions (412-488-7700), 127 McKean Street, Pittsburgh, Pa., 15219 between 9:00 A.M. and 4:00 P.M. The cost of the Project Manual Documents is non-refundable. Project details and dates are described in each project manual. We are an equal rights and opportunity school district.

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1. Junior senator Romney 5. One who has difficulty picking things up 9. 67-Across maker 14. Geometry homework problem 15. Big name in syrup 16. Turned out 17. 1997 Foo Fighters single 19. Sneaker part 20. Photo in a photo 21. Café menu 23. Distinguished Indian’s title 24. It’s tough to look at 26. Animal used for fur 28. Number of pieces in a monokini 29. Classified writing? 31. Bank offering 34. Baking sheet covering 36. Team building? 39. Under the weather 40. 2018 horror movie that has spawned dumb blindfolded memes, and a hint to this puzzle’s theme 42. Began eagerly 43. Link’s game, for short 45. Ardor 46. Super-pretentious 47. Problem with tight shoes

49. Schrager who co-founded Studio 54 51. Nielsen’s “The Naked Gun” role 53. Fork over, as dough 57. Short muscle? 58. Eat up quickly 61. Hershey subsidiary 62. Surfer’s spot 64. You might rip it open to get money out 66. Encourage 67. See 9-Across 68. Composer Stravinsky 69. Damsel-indistress location 70. Small points 71. “Let me show you,” ungrammatically


1. First lady before Jackie 2. Humor lost on many 3. Like suddendeath overtimes 4. Hires 5. It’s got a high overhead 6. Clemson Tigers QB Trevor 7. Bully who attacks schools? 8. Quantum theory scientist Niels 9. Take-home number 10. U. S. Open number 11. Led, as a meeting 12. Pick up

13. Actor Redmayne 18. School where 13-Down attended 22. Perfect figure 25. Bank’s offering 27. Scuff up 29. Grow bigger 30. Duchess of ___ (Goya subject) 31. Running Warren 32. Cheer for Atletico Madrid, say 33. Words after kissing a minor boo-boo 35. Rice-like pasta 37. Minor problem 38. “___ Colour You Like” (Pink Floyd) 40. Flight rail 41. Gobblegook

mishmash 44. Name 46. Heavenly 48. Quaint stopover 50. It’s all around you 51. Like actors who would be happy to work 52. Reached, as a total 53. Its enharmonic equivalent it B major 54. ___ Hufflepuff (one of the co-founders of Hogwarts) 55. Employ against 56. Kind of culture dish 59. Devoted 60. Bank’s action 63. Squeeze out 65. Groups of rioters LAST WEEK’S ANSWERS



PEEPSHOW A sex and social justice column


had positive experiences dating couples. Dear Jessie, Multiple women responded by Can single women trust couples looking drawing a distinction between bad unifor a third on online dating apps? ~ Tri-Curious ~ corn hunters and couples that wanted There’s a lot of stigma around couples who are looking for a third partner for either a casual threesome, or for a more serious dating situation. They are often derogatorily referred to as “unicorn hunters.” Bisexual women attracted to both members of a couple are assumed to be so rare that they are likened to a mythical creature — a unicorn. The negativity toward unicorn hunting reflects the fact that many women have, in fact, had negative experiences with threesomes. Often these sorts of triad relationships are entered into without a clear discussion of boundaries and expectation. Conflicts and mistakes in these situations tend to more negatively impact the third, who is seen as secondary to the couple’s preexisting relationship. And yet, you are curious about being a third — and you are not alone! Often, critiques of these relationships ignore women’s unique personal reasons for pursuing them. In the right scenario, and with reasonable expectation, dating a couple can be a rewarding, worthwhile experience. To better understand when these kinds of relationships make sense, I reached out to single women who have

a deeper connection. For example, Anonymous said, “I think unicorn hunting is gross, typically because those are the couples that just want a girl to be their sex object.” She goes on, “Couples that genuinely like a third person don’t usually have that vibe.”

ONE PERSON LIKING YOU IS AWESOME. BUT TWO PEOPLE?! Jenna Jones told me “It is really nice to be more than just a fantasy wishlist.” Specifically, “I think the most positive for me was that the couples actually wanted to know ME in addition to looking for a third … We dined and hung out even outside the bedroom … They liked me as a friend/ human and not the elusive unicorn.” Both women also describe a unique kind of sexual satisfaction specific to this dynamic. Jones says, “One person liking you is awesome. But TWO people?! I found having an extra person to talk to, laugh with, play with, just made it more interesting and fun! More insights and voices and thoughts and places to touch.”

And Anonymous says, “It’s been positive because I can absorb the essence of the romance without having to be an active player.” One of the positive things about moving into a sexual and/or romantic relationship with an established couple is that there is a built-in comfort and intimacy that you, as a third, can tap into without having to create. While that level of intimacy is desirable to many people, the work that one has to do to create it may not be feasible for any number of reasons: major life transition, transience, career conflict, family responsibilities, etc. What I learned from these conversations is that many good things can come from dating a couple: friendship, twice the attention, group sex, intimacy. If these things are appealing to you and you find a couple that you are attracted to, I say go for it. However, be realistic about the boundaries and don’t assume that this can fulfill all the same needs as non-hierarchical relationships. In regards to meeting couples, take the safety precautions that you would in any online dating situation: meet them for the first time in a public place, talk to both of them to make sure that there isn’t weirdness or conflict going into the date, speak directly about everyone’s interests and expectations, and have fun.

Jessie Sage is co-host of the Peepshow Podcast, which addresses issues related to sex and social justice. Her column Peepshow is exclusive to City Paper. Follow her on Twitter @peep_cast.

On Episode 39 of the Peepshow Podcast we bring on freelance writer and lawyer Madeline Holden. She is based between Berlin and New Zealand, and covers gender, sex, relationships and power as her main beats. We asked her to come on to talk about a recent piece she wrote for MEL Magazine on the male gaze. In the piece, she traces the history of the male gaze from its inception as a film studies concept in the 1970s, to now. She asks important questions about whether the male gaze is intelligible in 2019, if there is something like a female gaze, and how any of this speaks to a plurality of desires and identities. She also tells us about her own NSFW Tumblr page, “Critique My Dick Pic.” We also talk to Kate Doyle Griffiths, an anthropologist finishing a doctorate at the CUNY Graduate Center, and queer Marxist organizer. They talk to us about the upcoming Women’s March on Jan. 19, as well as the anti-capitalism organizing they are doing with for the International Women’s Strike, which takes place in March. For more on the male gaze and feminist/Marxist organizing, list to peepshowpodcast.com/ peepshow-podcast-episode-38

Too embarrassed to ask your friends about a sexual position? Want to know what it’s really like to work in the sex industry? Jessie Sage wants to hear from you! Submit a question for a chance to get it answered in an upcoming column Email your question to info@pghcitypaper.com with “Ask Jessie” in the subject line. (All questions will be kept confidential.) 38


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Art + Empathy: CMOA Celebrates MLK January 21 11 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free with admission What’s your vision for the world? Help us celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with art activities for all ages.

SPECIAL PROGRAMS Collaborative Dream Mural in the Studio 11 a.m.–4 p.m. Self-Portraits in the Galleries 11 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Back-To-Back Drawing in the Galleries 11 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Art Chat: Tavares Strachan, The Encyclopaedia of Invisibility 11:15 a.m. and 2:15 p.m.

cmoa.org | 412.622.3131 | guided tours daily one of the four carnegie museums of pittsburgh

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January 16, 2019 - Pittsburgh City Paper