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MAY 2013 | VOLUME 13, NO. 5

the free press A






Meet Mayor Tim Settled in his new digs, Kabat gets to work

photo by: Jacqueline Marcou

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P L U S : T H E M A J A K M I X TA P E

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Second Supper | The Free Press


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the free press P.O. Box 427 La Crosse, WI 54601 Publisher: Roger Bartel Editor in Chief: Adam Bissen Cover and Ad Design: Jenn Bushman Regular Contributors: Amy Alkon, Erich Boldt, Mary Catanese, Ashly Conrad, Marcel Dunn, Brett Emerson, Shuggypop Jackson, Jonathan Majak, Matt Jones, Nate Willer


Contact Us: 608.782.7001 or 262.521.8144 Online: Second Supper is a monthly alternative newspaper published by Bartanese Enterprises LLC, P.O. Box 427, La Crosse, WI 54601

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Sets we saw at Mid West Music Fest 1. Astronautalis 2. Retribution Gospel Choir 3. The Ericksons 4. Halloween, AK 5. 64 Squares 6. Sun Gods to Gamma Rays 7. Paulie People who need a ride 1. Yovani Gallardo 2. Reese Witherspoon 3. That girl from the Weezer song 4. Miss Daisy 5. Hobos 6. Captain Ride 7. Middle school soccer teams

Second Supper | The Free Press

Meet Mayor Tim: By Bob Treu

Contributing Editor The mayor of La Crosse has an impressive view. From his office on the sixth floor of City Hall you can see all of downtown, most of the south side, the river and the Minnesota bluffs. Nonetheless, it is a very accessible place, and that’s the way the new mayor wants it. In spite of all that, I was a little intimidated about going there for an interview. That was before I actually met the man. When I first found him in the office of Downtown Main Street Inc., he was working his last day there, but there was no sense of disorder or hurry. When I asked about an interview he set a time and then wrote something on a small piece of paper. It contained his phone number and the words: “Mayor Tim.” I had already researched the proper way to address a mayor, which turns out to be “your honor.” Somehow I never used it. The mayor’s office is also plain, almost austere, without a sign of clutter anywhere. Of course it was only his second full day in office when we did the interview, but his appearance seemed to support the impression given by his surroundings. He wore a dark suit and tie, his hair was meticulously barbered, and his glasses were horn rims. He might have stepped off the set of "Mad Men," which perhaps accounts for his being described as “wonkish” and “a little distant.” That image turns out to be very misleading. In addition to being born here, Tim Kabat graduated from the local state university. Then he went on to do graduate work in Urban Planning at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. After that he worked in city planning in South Bend, Ind., and West Palm Beach, Fla. When the opportunities presented themselves, he took similar positions in Wisconsin, in Baraboo and Madison. Ultimately he came back to La Crosse to work in city planning. All this seems clear and purposeful, but it wasn’t without its difficulties. His wife, Christy, has had several operations, a trial that has put them very much in touch with what ordinary Americans go through. Before the interview I asked the Mayor how his wife was doing and he said she is fine. Then he gave me an explanation of her situation, using medical terms and careful hand gestures to describe the bones involved. Mayor Tim would have been an excellent teacher.

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publican or a Democrat, or even as a liberal or conservative. MT: No, I don’t belong to a party, although I have worked on campaigns for certain people. My independence helped me in the election and now I think it will help me bring people together. That was one of the themes of my campaign. I was able to get support from business certainly, because of my work at Downtown Main Street Inc., but I had support from other groups as well, including unions. SS: Looking at your career, working for South Bend, Baraboo and then Madison, it feels a lot like you were one of those hometown guys, circling around and looking for a way back home. MT: Oh yes. I always knew I wanted to come back to La Crosse. SS: Did you ever think you’d be mayor? MT: No, but I’d see situations and think about being in a position to do something. SS: Reading the information online about your background, it was hard to miss your academic preparation and experience in urban planning. So what does a city planner do? MT: City planners do a lot of things in developing programs and services. My emphasis has always been on economic development. SS: You’re probably aware there’s a part of the political spectrum that is against any kind of planning. MT: [smiles] Yes, I know. SS: As you know, the voters of La Crosse recently defeated, pretty soundly I think, a referendum to change from a mayoral system to a city manager. Given your background in city management, how do you feel about that? If it came up again, would you support that? MT: Well, I do see the benefits of having a city manager, especially in terms of getting things done efficiently. But I also respect the voters’ concern about keeping the system as open and democratic as possible. SS: How do you think Gov. Walker’s Act 10 will affect your work as mayor? MT: Morale is very low among city workers, among firefighters and teachers, and just about everyone. I want to make sure city workers have input into the decisions that most directly affect them.

Second Supper: Did you have any political experience before you ran for mayor? Mayor Tim: This will be the first political office I’ve held, although I have worked in politics before.

SS: You have talked about the areas you want to address, but what do you consider to be the greatest challenge in your new job? MT: I really feel neighborhood renewal is the most important.

SS: And you won by a wide margin against an opponent with a long history in La Crosse politics. That’s even more impressive since you are not particularly identified as a Re-

SS: I was pleased that in your remarks at the swearing-in ceremony you said that we have too much poverty. Can a mayor, even with the help of a friendly city council, do much about poverty?

On his second day in office, Kabat gets to work MT: We can try to do some things, but you have to see poverty in La Crosse in the context of what’s happening nationally. Poverty has been growing everywhere, and cities find it more and more difficult to deal with it.

SS: Certainly our attitude toward poverty has changed. Many of us remember when eliminating poverty seemed a rational part of our national agenda; now the attitude seems to be if you’re poor you probably deserve it. MT: You could see those attitudes change very sharply in the 1980s. Cities were getting real help from something called Urban Development Action Grants, and Reagan eliminated them. It’s no surprise so many cities have deteriorating neighborhoods. SS: La Crosse seems to be following the pattern of larger cities, with people moving to suburbs and leaving behind a deteriorating city. MT: I saw that first hand when I worked in South Bend, which is a typical rust belt town. SS: There is a group that is trying to address some of the problems of deteriorating neighborhoods, especially on the south side. Do you know anything about them? MT: You mean the Powell-Hood Hamilton Association. I’ve attended some of their meetings and I am impressed by their determination and energy. It’s really citizens working together to improve things, refurbishing residences, improving parks and bike paths, and trying to attract some small businesses. SS: How is the city involved in this? MT: We’re working with Gunderson Lutheran through a process called Tax Incremental Financing. They put $250,000 into the program and we matched it. This was an agreement made in 2012. SS: It sounds complicated. MT: Yes, but it does allow us to spread the burden over a longer period of time. SS: This is a really positive thing, but you know if the city ever decides to build a highway through the south side it will be a totally different ballgame. Much of what the Powell-Hood Hamilton group is trying to accomplish would be for nothing. MT: That would not be good. And I don’t think there’s any real need for it. The current street system is perfectly adequate. A much better approach is to work on improv-

ing mass transportation. SS: I want to ask you about the scheme currently before the council to replace our garbage cans with new ones that have wheels and can be picked up by the trucks robotically. Of course, the company will save some money by eliminating some jobs. Do you support this plan? MT: There will be a loss of jobs, but on the plus side, the new system will allow us to expand the kinds of items we can recycle, especially paper and cardboard products. Right now we are only recycling tin, aluminum, and plastic. SS: Couldn’t we expand recycling without the new carts? MT: The new system will make that possible more quickly and efficiently. SS: So what is some someone steals my new cart? Will I have to pay for a new one? MT: That’s one of the details that haven’t been worked out yet. SS: When you came back to La Crosse in 2003, you must have realized pretty quickly it was a very different town from the one you had grown up in. MT: Oh yes. The changes were really obvious. SS: For one thing, it is no longer simply a community of European immigrants and their descendants. At the end of the war in Vietnam we had an influx of Hmong refugees, and now we have a much larger number of African-American residents. How do you feel about this new diversity, and how will it affect your job as mayor? MT: I think it’s great. It just adds a lot to the community. Of course, I have some experience dealing with diverse populations, so I feel ready for the challenge. The La Crosse Hmong community is already pretty well organized and making substantial contributions, and now the African-American community is beginning to organize. For example, there is now a committee to welcome new African-American residents. We need to support those kinds of activities in any way we can. I think it’s all part of getting people to work together. SS: There’s a tendency for people to associate this population change with an increase in violence. Is La Crosse still a safe place to live? MT: Yes it is. Of course that’s a sort of relative question, but I think it is. SS: At the swearing-in the other day, you said you need to get people to dream. What did you mean by that? MT: It’s not just about one person imposing a vision upon a community. Everyone has a vision of what they would like to see in the future, and by sharing those dreams we can begin to work together to make things happen.

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Second Supper | The Free Press


The Majak Mixtape

Music Directory

By Jonathan Majak Oh Mixtapers, La Crosse is making waves again and nobody had to be called fat or be convicted of murdering their parents, so we take that as, you know, some small sense of progress. Now La Crosse can be seen every week as the backdrop for the misadventures of the Grand River Singers and their VH1 reality show “Off Pitch,” detailing the highs and lows of trying to entertain the masses as a show choir. While it sadly lacks the STD outbreaks of the “Flavor of Love” franchise or the family friendly wig-snatching of “Love and Hip Hop,” “Off Pitch” offers up its own magical mix of never-constant emotional breakdowns, cheerfully half-baked musical performances and an inordinate amount of sequins. In honor of the show we have this Mixtape we‘re dubbing, “This Mixtape Loves a Good Jazz Hand.” We kick off the Mixtape with Lana Del Rey’s “Young and Beautiful” from “The Great Gatsby” soundtrack because GRS is filled with a lot of young and beautiful folks willing to make total fools of themselves on


Answers on Page 6


Root Note – Natty Nation • 9 p.m.

Wednesday, May 1st River Jack’s – JK’s Latin Vibe • 6 p.m.

Leo & Leona’s – Simon and Ivan

Warehouse – Icarus the Owl Thursday, May 2nd Trempealeau Hotel – Stephanie Nilles (jazz/punk) & Jack Klatt (folk) • 7 p.m. national television for the slim possibility of garnering some sort of Z-list level of fame. And we honestly mean that as a compliment in our own bitchy way because being on a reality show takes, aside from an unhealthily high amount of narcissism, a supreme amount of resolve to put up with all the critiques you’re going to get from a-holes like us. Our next song on this Mixtape is “Entertainment” from Phoenix’s new album “Bankrupt!” as people have been fairly divided on whether the alleged entertainment provided by “Off Pitch” is the best or worst things to happen to La Crosse. Go to any message board from our local news stations or La Crosse Tribune and you’ll read all types of hilarious critiques because message boards are like Petri dishes for hyperbole to grow. We don’t know if this is the best or worst thing, but we do know that for a town that was, for most of our lives as residents here, known around the United States as that place where people ended up in the Mississippi River, we’re pretty sure it can, you know, withstand some off-key singing. But we’re ever the helpful types and if there is a season two of “Off Pitch,” we have some helpful suggestions. This leads us to our last song for this mixtape, “Sing to the Moon” by Laura Mvula from her debut album also titled “Sing to the Moon.” Number one, more tears. There should never be a moment where somebody isn’t sobbing. Number two, do shows at even odder places. If you can play a Cow Pie Festival, you should be open to Swingers Conventions. And number three, get La Crosse celebrity Peaches to be your new choreographer. She could very well be La Crosse’s answer to Twyla Tharp. Love the Mixtape? Read it weekly at and like us on Facebook.

eat fresh! eat local! go co-op!

Friday, May 3rd Leo & Leona’s – Coulee Rock Invaders Bottoms Up – Altered Vision (rock) • 9 p.m. Saturday, May 4th Pump House – Willy Porter (folk) • 7:30 p.m. Leo & Leona’s – Gregg Hall and the Wrecking Ball, Brothers, Burn Mountain, Eddie Danger, Paulie Matushek Sunday, May 5th Warehouse – Guilty of Destruction, Wolfphase, Matt Nielsen Leo & Leona’s – Ed Sullivan, The Jim B Three • 3 p.m. Wednesday, May 8th Warehouse – The Bunny The Bear, Deception of a Ghost, Maybe Tomorrow, Last Breath for a Capulet

Tuesday, May 14th La Crosse Center – Hollywood Undead, Falling in Reverse (metal) • 7 p.m. Saturday, May 18th Trempealeau Hotel – Reggae Fest (Dread I Dred, Gizzae, T.U.G.G) • 2-11 p.m. Wednesday, May 22nd Root Note – Crash the Lights • 8 p.m. Friday, May 24th Root Note – Matt Monsoor, Casey Virock, Moth Mountain • 8 p.m. Warehouse – Angry Room, Earth Insight, Ampherium Saturday, May 25th Warehouse – Gas, Bloodkitten, The Ultrasounds, Immaculate Miscinception • 7 p.m. Leo & Leona’s – Eric Lambert & Friends, Dan Sebranek Saturday, May 26th Root Note – Urine, 64 Squares, Raleway, Members of Lustrous Mud (CD release show) • 8 p.m.

Friday, May 10th Cavalier Theater – Greg Brown (folk) • 7 p.m.

Monday, May 27th Warehouse – Jason Dunn (singer/songwriter)

Root Note – Adelyn Rose & Ryan Hartkopf • 8 p.m.

Tuesday, May 28th Warehouse – The Waffle Stompers

Bottoms Up – Shawno & Echant (rock) • 9 p.m.

Friday, May 31st Warehouse – Sea of Treachury, Guardians, Miss August

Leo & Leona’s – Horseshoes and Handgrenades

Leo & Leona’s – Prairie Dogz

Saturday, May 11th Muse Theater – Allman Brothers Tribute • 6:45 p.m. Starlite Lounge – Third Charles (acid jazz) • 8 p.m.

Xword Answers

Weekly Gigs Sunday Popcorn – Innocuous Voodoo (funk) • 10 p.m. Monday Popcorn – Grant’s Open Jam • 10 p.m. Del’s – Cheech’s Open Jam • 10 p.m. Tuesday Jade Café – Open Mic Night • 7 p.m. Popcorn – Paulie • 10:00 p.m. Root Note – 3rd Relation Jazz • 8:00 p.m. Thursday Starlight – Kies & Kompanie (jazz) • 5 p.m.

315 Fifth Ave. So. La Crosse, WI

Root Note – Open Mic • 8 p.m. Popcorn – Dave Orr’s Blues jam • 9 p.m.

tel. 784.5798 open daily 7 am–10 pm

all are welcome

Send your music schedule to

Second Supper | The Free Press


The Month in Preview Sat., May 4 BIG DAY FOR THE BIRDS @ Myrick Hixon EcoPark Some people might say that birds are

@ Cavalier Theater

at when there is nothing else to look at. Of course that’s a little exaggerated. May 4 is International Migratory Bird Day, which is actually a big deal in the entire Western Hemisphere. The EcoPark is hosting a celebration which will include bird walks, bird bandings, raptor presentations, as well as bird-themed crafts and games for all ages. There will also be talks on the little ways you can help the birds. This runs from when the birds start chirping (6 a.m.) to 4 p.m.

Sat., May 4 ROCK & ROLL, QUIET STYLE @ Pump House

memorial day | garage sales | chalk

Fri., May 10

them. Outdoor auditory experiences would

phone would truly be the only thing to stare

fine arts | mother’s day | wine | theater

in advance, $28 on day of show.


the wind blowing in your ear, and your

music | entertainment | spring is here

at 7:30 p.m. Tickets for the public are $25

boring, but let’s think about a world without be limited to the rumble of car engines and

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The Cavalier Theater has only been open for a month and it’s already bringing in a legend. Greg Brown, one of the most respected folk musicians alive today, will bless La Crosse with the true blues and poetic folk that he’s been a master of for decades. He’s so good at what he does that artists such as Willie Nelson and Carlos Santana perform covers of his songs. Not much else needs to be saidthis is not to be missed. Show starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $28 in advance, $32 at the door and are well worth it.

be face-painting going on too.

between. So you’ve got a scenic drive along the Mississippi, quaint towns, who knows

Sat., May 11

Sat., May 11

what for sale, and bargains that’ll make up



if you end up coming back with nothing

@ Various River Areas

@ Vitamin Studio

but a bunch of baby clothes that you have

Imagine if it was an accepted norm to draw

Vitamin Studio is having a Spring Cleaning

all over the sidewalks, driveways, parking

Willy Porter describes his music as a mix

lots, and streets with sidewalk chalk. The

of blues, folk, and rock & roll. His latest

once drab city would turn beautiful since

EP is humbly called Cheeseburgers and

all things (no matter how unskillfully done)

Gasoline, and he’s from Wisconsin, which

look at least somewhat good when done

is his last stop on his Spring tour. Willy

in sidewalk chalk. Plus the canvas would

will be performing at the Pump House on

soon be new after each rainfall. Enough

the 4th to wrap up their concert season.

with utopian sentiments. The Pump House

His performances are filled with comedy,

is putting on the Chalk Art Festival on the

humanity, and stellar finger-style guitar

11th from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. There will be

playing, which together produce a profound

a workshop on making chalk, which you

effect on the audience. He usually tours with

can then use on the sidewalk of course.

electrically charged rock groups and ends

Registered artists will compete for prizes

up winning over their audiences with his

(you can register too), and local food

minimal and quiet message. Show begins

vendors will be selling food. There will also

Sale! As dear as our artwork is to us, we’ve got to make room for the new work, so we’ll be pulling out all of our old favorites and giving them Spring Cleaning prices. Help us clean our closets while filling your walls with some of the best artwork La Crosse has to offer, including work from Jenn Bushman, Matt Duckett, Dirk Nelson, and Coulee

for the gas money you’ll have to front. Even

no use for, it’ll still be worth the American Experience. This one runs from the 17th to the 18th, but Minnesota has its own on the 2nd to the 4th. Feel free to do both.

Sat., May 18 IT’S ALL IRIE @ Trempealeau Hotel

Region heavy hitters. Exhibition and sale

Trempealeau, Wisconsin is probably one

runs May 11–18, and meet and catch up

of the last places you’d expect to have

with the artists at our Artist Reception on

something like Reggae Fest. Nonetheless,

May 11, from 7–whenever, as always.

it’s a solid tradition that’s been bringing the Caribbean closer to home for over 20

May 17 & 18

years. This year’s fest will be featuring three


Chicago’s Gizzae, Minneapolis’s Dread I

@ all along the Mississippi

Dred, and La Crosse’s own T.U.G.G. There’ll

The Rummage Along the River, a 70 mile garage sale event, seems more like some modern American folklore than something that is actually going to happen this May. The mass secondhand sale takes place in Stoddard, Seneca and every town in

of the top reggae bands from the Midwest:

also be plenty of Jamaican cuisine to try and various arts and crafts to buy. Tickets are $17 in advance (purchase at People’s Food Co-op, Deaf Ear, or Dave’s Guitar Shop), $22 day of fest. Let’s just hope the hotel has enough Red Stripe to go around.

6// May 1, 2013

Second Supper | The Free Press


The Beer Review

"Xzibit A" 24, meet 26 By Matt Jones

Answers on Page 4

Pearl Street Pale Ale Pearl Street Brewery La Crosse, Wisconsin By Adam Bissen

ACROSS 1 "The Simpsons" small businessman 4 "No Scrubs" group 7 Midori liqueur flavor 12 Tampa Bay player, for short 13 Vexing 15 Candle type 16 Place to find zebras in New York 18 Former PLO leader 19 Wine prefix 20 Get out of control 22 20,000 pounds 24 Bad variety of cholesterol 25 "Breathe Me" singer 28 Wright-Patterson, e.g. 29 "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" role 30 Store runners, for short 31 What one undecillion contains 36 Last word in a 1978

#1 song title 37 Hot time in Paris? 38 Accident-___ 39 85003, 85004 and 85007, for example 42 Kitchen items 43 Porker's pad 44 Start for nob or goblin 45 Deflating beach ball sound 46 Leader once known as "The Four Greats" 47 City in the Allegheny Mountains 51 Making attempts at 54 Pants, as it were 55 Grandma, in Granada 57 Bond villain played by Christopher Walken 59 Miss Montana? 60 Native Canadian 61 "Was ___ das?" 62 Ire 63 Comcast, e.g. 64 47-down successor

DOWN 1 Head of a monastery 2 Blender setting 3 Home to the Huskies 4 "The Audience Is Listening" system 5 George who played Bond only once 6 Get to the other side 7 Fable ending 8 State, to the French 9 Optimist's worldview 10 Eggs 11 Paycheck line 14 Bashful companion 15 Notorious Exxon tanker 17 They confirm you signed 21 Kovalev of hockey 23 More ___ than not 26 "Fame" actress Cara 27 Stubborn critters 29 Like, totally unfocused 30 1983 song where the title character gets

thanked a lot 31 Baseball card brand 32 Hostess selection, once 33 "Ow, a bee!" 34 Poet Anne 35 Center of Florida? 40 Washington dropped from "Grey's Anatomy" 41 Purple perennials 46 Silvery balloon material 47 Pitfall platform 48 Senator Hatch 49 Bump in the night 50 Mom’s sisters 52 Philosopher Descartes 53 Yukon XL manufacturer 55 "Now I see!" 56 Outlaw 58 “Houses of the Holy” band, to some fans ©2012 Jonesin' Crosswords

reach us at:

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PHONE: 608.782.7001 OR 262.521.8144 PO Box 427, La Crosse, WI 54601 EDITOR@SECONDSUPPER.COM

As we all know in this advanced age, swag matters. Simply being, say, an adept rapper, fundamentally sound shortstop or delicious beer is no longer enough. You have to look fresh while doing so. Everyone’s gunning for that No. 1 spot, so whether it be on the base paths or in the beer aisle, you gotta come correct. Thus, I’m giving props this month to my boys and girls at the Pearl Street Brewery for unveiling the fly new labels for their Pearl Street Pale Ale. Gone is the tired, grass-green banner with the interlocking PSB. In its place these bottles have a popping new get-up, depicting a photo illustration of Pearl Street — La Crosse’s most happening boulevard — beneath tactful colored bars and some truly boss typography. If you’ve lived in western Wisconsin for any part of the past decade, I don’t have to tell you what Pearl Street Pale Ale tastes like. It’s a go-to brew, a fine option for anywhere that has a menu more ambitious than simply Spotted Cow. But living alongside this Pale Ale, the discerning La Crosse beer drinker may lose sight of how unique it actually is. It doesn’t chase the intensity of an IPA, but it doesn’t limp out like the average session pale either. Especially when this beer is fresh and popping — as is the swaggering six-pack I just bought — it’s a treat for the taste buds and a testament to just how good we have it here in the Coulee Region.

I Like to Watch Continued from Page 7 ters program about Mel Brooks, you know it’s going to be fun. As a Borscht Belt entertainer, TV comedy writer, movie director and Broadway impresario, Brooks will see to that. Even in the context of a respectable PBS documentary, he will sing, tell earthy jokes, make absurd observations – anything to get you laughing. “Every time I hear the key in the door,” said Brooks’ wife, Anne Bancroft, “I know the party is about to start.” This week, the party starts at 8 p.m. on Friday. Actor Steven Weber says of Brooks, “It must be an enormous burden to be the funniest man on Earth.” At one time, it was. Growing up without a father, Brooks experienced anxiety attacks and suicidal tendencies throughout his young adulthood. Life improved when he broke through as a comedy star in the 1960s with his 2000-yearold man routine. He disregarded studio orders regarding his 1974 movie Blazing Saddles (“cut the farting-around-the-campfire scene”) and had a hit. He disregarded their orders again on Young Frankenstein (“don’t shoot it in black-and-white”) and had another one. Not even the Nazis could

Purchase: 6-pack of Pearl Street Pale Ale, Festival Foods, $7.49 Style: American Pale Ale Strength: 6 percent ABV Packaging: I already waxed poetic about the beer label, but where this redesign really bangs is on the six-pack holder itself. The front panel is an expanded version of the label, so detailed you can even see my old apartment and the guy with the knapsack who seemed to live on Pearl Street last summer. The side panels proclaim “Hops Rock,” and one even depicts brewmaster Joe Katchever buried to his head in lime-green hop buds. Appearance: This pale pours a translucent golden color with a full frothy white head. Aroma: The aroma initially comes on with lemon and piney hops, but it becomes richer with a deep inhale of buttery biscuit malts. Taste: The first flavors are floral hops and something akin to pear skins before it mellows into its deep malty backbone that is bready like fresh hotdog buns. It then turns pleasingly creamy and lingers on the finish with a long lemony fade. Mouthfeel: This has a rich and relatively thick mouthfeel for the style. Drinkability: From personal experience, I can vouch that Pearl Street Pale is highly drinkable. Ratings: BeerAdvocate grades this an 81, while RateBeer scores it a cruel 47. That could be because the Pale has had some troubles aging on the shelf. But wrap one of Wisconsin’s finer pale ales in a fly new label, and that may be a problem of the past. Swag!

survive an encounter with this Jewish force of nature. “He decimated Hitler by making fun of him,” says Carl Reiner of Brooks’ movie The Producers. Matthew Broderick, who starred in the Broadway adaptation of The Producers, describes Brooks in manic mode the night it won a record Tonys in 2001. “It’s very difficult to get Mel to stop without a tranquilizer dart.” Why would anyone want him to stop?

Soduku Answers

Second Supper | The Free Press


The Art Rumba Review Back stage @ The Muse Theatre 1353 Avon St., La Crosse By Andrew Chulyk Special to Second Supper Everyone wants to be an actor and, conversely, everyone is an actor. We act up, we act out, we act like jerks, we act like we care, we act like we don’t care, we act finicky, we act silly and we’re always warned, “Don’t act like your Uncle Murray”. We say things like, “That’s a class act” or “That’s a hard act to follow.” So in other words, act-ions often speak louder than words. Theatre, which means “a place for viewing,” began in ancient Greece about 5,000 years ago and was basically a vehicle for re-enacting mythic ceremonies and rituals. Acting then was pantomime punctuated by choral singing. But, in the 6th century B.C., Thespis had the novel idea to have actors speak rather than just dance or sing. And thus began the long evolution of “Theatre” into what we know today as “Modern Theater.” On the north side of La Crosse, in an old church, you’ll find The Muse Theatre. Developed, owned and operated by Vicki and Don Elwood. This little theatre is a great example of how small independent acting groups survive. But, converting an abandoned church into a theater wasn’t so easy. It took their ambition, desire, energy and, of course, their savings to beat the odds, to do what others here thought would never work. It has been Vicki Elwood’s determination to succeed that has kept her life and theatre running. Her years in New York taught her well. She became a member of Gotham City Improv and applied her skills of quick thinking, extroversion and playful goofiness to her advantage. “You start out as a nobody. Everybody wants to be a star, but you have to go the distance,” Vicki explains. “You chase shows and maybe get into two, if

you’re lucky. It’s hard work and rejections are the norm. You need the drive to make it.” Elwood continued on, appearing in Off Broadway productions at the Sanford Meisner Theatre and Duality Playhouse. She developed a one-woman cabaret show, “Pretty Damn Blonde,” that she performed at Don’t Tell Mama’s in Manhattan. She studied acting with Broadway divas Betty Buckley and Elaine Stritch. She learned method acting and continued to work hoping for that “big break.” Vicki explained, “It’s all about being in the right place at the right time and so you hang out places.” At Rainbow and the Stars atop Rockefeller Center she would see Mike Nichols and “hope he would discover me.” She hung out with comedian Lewis Black at West Side Theater, and the list goes on. But in a competitive environment such as New York you either succeed or you slowly burn out. Elwood left New York and came back to her roots in Wisconsin and settled in La Crosse to fulfill her secret desire to have her own theater, to run her own show, to sing and dance and laugh. At the Muse she does all that and more. To her, all jobs are equal. From set building to costume design to stage hand to prop master, director, writer, she does them all, gladly. A theater is not where everyone always gets along, not where everyone gets the part they want, but it is where you compromise and come together for the sake of the show. The audience never knows all that goes on back stage or behind the scenes, the struggles, the insecurities and anxiety. They don’t need to. What they do see is a magical production unfold, a story told boldly and honestly whether it’s "Bat Boy the Musical," "Sweeny Todd," "The Rocky Horror Show LIVE" or "Steel Magnolias," it is all an experience shared. Vicki Elwood, artist, actor and director, brings that experience to the audience. Hers is a life lived, where bills get paid, the roof leaks and the furnace breaks down, but regardless, the show must go on.

The Rumba Beat Ongoing and upcoming art events in the Coulee Region Greetings, culture seekers! Art Rumba here searching the region's coffee shop bulletin boards for the less advertised art, theater and music event postings. UWL Center for the Arts Gallery All American Art Recession-Senior Exhibition. This is a truly unique show that is fresh, contemporary and definitely “outside the box.” Open daily at noon to May 10. Common Ground 1334 Pine St., La Crosse Adam Oldre, metal work, and Megan Jensen, photography. Open daily and open late to May 10. The Wine Guyz This month’s featured artist is Dirk Nelson. His figurative drawings and monotypes can be enjoyed with a nice glass of wine. An opening reception will be held 5-7 p.m. May 3. The show runs until May 12. Upcoming will be the large-scale photography of Paul Hatlem from May 13-June 9 with an opening

reception from 5-7 p.m. May 16. State Street Gallery, 1804 State St., La Crosse The gallery hosts a mix of local, regional and national artists covering all mediums and styles. If you like an intimate environment to explore your art tastes, this is it. Also visit State Streets other location at the Grand River Station Gallery on Third Street. Call 782-0101. Pearl Street Books, 323 Pearl St., La Crosse Winona author Andy Schoepp will be autographing his new novel “Time Ninja” on from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 4. The Muse Theatre and Deece Productions will present Gregg “Cheech” Hall's Allman Brothers tribute, “Eat a Peach,” Saturday, May 11. Doors open at 6:45, the show starts at 7:30 p.m. I strongly suggest you by tickets early as this will be a sellout show. Check out Deece for more info. Enjoy the art, support the artists and Rumba ON! -- Art Rumba

May 1, 2013 // 7 Bin Laden, using stereotypes about women like “overly emotional.” “Yes, we were borderline obsessed,” analyst Cindy Storer says. “But I thought it was for a good reason.” There you have it, folks: the understatement of the decade.

I Like to Watch By Dean Robbins Special to Second Supper The wonder of me

A teenager films himself in Zach Stone Is Gonna Be Famous Viral-video star Bo Burnham is well cast as a would-be viral-video star in Zach Stone Is Gonna Be Famous (Thursday, May 2, 9:30 p.m., MTV). He plays Zach Stone, a motormouth high school dork obsessed with his post-graduation plan: making a reality show about his life. With a two-man video crew in tow, he puzzles his family and friends by playing to the cameras throughout the ordinary moments of the day. At breakfast, for example, he calls for a retake when he’s dissatisfied with his reaction to the news of distant relative’s death. “Really, Jesus, REALLY?” he cries, gesturing to heaven in his new-and-improved reaction. As his parents look on in horror, Zach says, “Annnd…scene! Nailed it!” In one way, Zach’s project is about reshaping reality. He’s intent on making himself seem more fascinating than he really was in high school for an imagined audience. Thus, he joins a parade of American characters – Huck Finn, Jay Gatsby, Holden Caulfield – who specialize in reinvention. And of course, a modern kid like Zach would accomplish such a transformation via DIY video. But in another way, Zach’s project is born of fear. As friends prepare to leave for college, he throws himself into his project as a way to stabilize his suddenly unstable world. Over the course of the first episode (co-written by Burnham), we perceive desperation in Zach’s bravado. And that lends this farce an unexpected depth. Zach Stone Is Gonna Be Famous looks to be one the spring’s best new shows. As Zach himself would say: Nailed it! Manhunt Wednesday, May 1, 7 p.m. (HBO) This is a documentary version of Zero Dark Thirty, taking us deep inside the CIA effort to combat Osama Bin Laden. We meet the analysts and operatives who spent entire careers on the project, beginning when Al Qaeda had yet to be ID’d in the 1990s. The analysts are largely female, and one of them insists this is no accident: “We [women] have patience and perseverance, and we’re not always looking for the sexy payoff immediately.” The analysts explain how they connected the dots as fragmentary intelligence emerged about a new kind of terrorist organization. Before 9/11, male supervisors accused them of spending too much time on

Dear Mom, Love Cher Monday, May 6, 9 p.m. (Lifetime) Where on Earth did Cher come from? I never thought about it before, but it couldn’t be anywhere normal, right? Dear Mom, Love Cher affirms that the unconventional singer/actress/force of nature did indeed emerge from an unconventional background. The documentary is Cher’s affectionate portrait of her mother, Georgia Holt, who didn’t conform to Norman Rockwell’s ideal of the post-World War II housewife. She married seven times and mostly raised her two daughters by herself while living in poverty on the fringes of the Hollywood dream. Georgia had walk-on roles as “the beautiful girl” on Ozzie and Harriet and I Love Lucy but never struck it rich, as her Arkansas family thought she might. In the meantime, she slid around the era’s repressive social norms, determined to set her own course. Now in her 80s, Georgia is embarking on an unlikely singing career. Dear Mom, Love Cher reminds me how much I love the fringes of the Hollywood dream. 10 Buildings That Changed America Monday, May 13, 8 p.m. (PBS) This wonderful documentary offers a chronological tour of America’s most influential buildings, from the neoclassical Virginia State Capitol by Thomas Jefferson to the whimsical Disney Concert Hall by Frank Gehry. We learn that American architecture is characterized not by a single style, but by an eagerness to invent forms never before seen. 10 Buildings That Changed America shares anecdotes and analysis of such buildings as Frank Lloyd Wright’s Robie House (the inspiration for ranch houses) and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s Seagram Building (the inspiration for modern skyscrapers). My favorite segment concerns 1956’s Southdale Center in Edina, Minn., the first modern indoor mall. It turns out that malls were conceived by a utopian socialist, Victor Gruen, who deplored the unsightly commercial strips proliferating in the suburbs. Gruen wanted to create a community center where people could congregate, so he built Southdale’s 72 stores around a garden court to mimic an urban setting. Sadly, Gruen’s larger vision – of having houses and schools clustered around the mall – went unrealized. That turned Southdale into part of the suburban sprawl he so loathed. The next time you wash down a Cinnabon with an Orange Julius, though, don’t forget to tip your hat to the utopian socialist who made it all possible. American Masters Monday, May 20, 8 p.m. (PBS) When you tune into an American Mas-


8// May 1, 2013

change its spots. How could it be okay for her to cheat then and not now? --Spurned

The Advice Goddess By Amy Alkon In sickness and in stealth

This woman and I were involved 13 years ago, before I met my wife, but she was married then. She got divorced and moved away. We reconnected recently on Facebook, and I discovered she’s now only 20 miles away. I told her I’m happily married and I’ve never cheated on my wife, but I would risk everything for her and want to meet her for an intimate encounter. (She and I had great sex, far better than I have with my wife.) She said she still has feelings for me but is happily married and couldn’t cheat on her husband because she would feel “too guilty.” She says he is her “rock” and has done so much for her, including taking her and her three kids in during the ordeal of her divorce. I’m perplexed. She cheated on her first husband with me, and we had lots of fun. I thought the leopard couldn’t

Second Supper | The Free Press


It’s so annoying when a woman lets a little thing like a lifelong commitment get in the way of providing you with an hour and a half of better-quality sex. No, a leopard does not wake up in the morning and think, “Maybe I’ll do paisley today.” Humans, on the other hand, have an irritating tendency to fail to conform to pat aphorisms. For example, this woman, who, in the past, has provided you with some seriously excellent adulterous sex, now refuses to run off to Goodwill to get back her leopard-print blouse with the scarlet A on it. Amazingly, she feels it would be wrong to reward a guy who’s “done so much” for her by doing you whenever you can both sneak out for a nooner. As for why she cheated in the past, maybe she was young and narcissistic and thought being unhappily married was enough of an excuse to be happily adulterous. She’s since picked herself up a set of ethics -- maybe after seeing the ravages that conscience-free living can cause on husbands and children. And tempted as she may be, she seems to realize that the best way to avoid going around feeling all queasy with guilt is to avoid sexual multitasking: trying to gaze in one man’s eyes like you

love him while trying to remember what time you were supposed to meet the other man at the motel. Economist Robert H. Frank explains in “Passions Within Reason” that moral behavior seems to be driven by the emotions. Guilt, clearly, has worked for your former cheatums, and Frank sees love as a “commitment device” that bonds people beyond what would be in their sheer self-interest (like running off to the fi rst opportunity for better sex that moves back to town). In other words, if you focus on what you’re grateful for about your wife and engage in little loving touches and gestures, you can reinforce what you have -- which seems fairer than rewarding her for making you happy by giving her believable excuses for your disappearances. Remember, they’re called marriage vows, not marriage suggestions -- as in, you don’t get to live according to “Till the prospect of really great sex do us part, but only for an afternoon, and I wouldn’t even think of it if she weren’t double-jointed.”

Belittle Miss Sunshine

I met a girl online, and we exchanged some email and planned to meet for happy hour. About three hours before, she texted me, “Sorry, have 2 cancel.” That was the last I ever heard from her. I’m not bothered by being texted (since we didn’t have a relationship), but at what point do you

owe somebody more than the briefest possible blowoff? --Prematurely Dumped Sometimes the technology at hand demands that a person send an abbreviated message -- like when their chisel breaks just as they’re etching the last letter of “cancel” into the stone tablet. Sometimes, the brevity is the message. For example, in the briefest way, this woman told you everything you need to know about her: “I’m not about to type out eight words of explanation just to preserve some stranger’s dignity.” In Internet dating, because you’re meeting face to online dating profi le, the coldly calculating fi nd it easier to treat you like you’re just a bunch of digital information that has the possibility of becoming a boyfriend. Being kind and polite takes very little -- just some excuse that suggests you matter enough as a human to put some effort into blowing you off. So, this woman didn’t need to give you the real reason, just some reason -- “realizing i'm not over my x so sorry” -- instead of simply unsubscribing to you and your offer of a date like you were unwanted email from Lyndon LaRouche or the Pantyliner Of The Month Club. (c) 2013, Amy Alkon, all rights reserved. Got a problem? Write Amy Alkon at AdviceAmy@ (

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Second Supper | Vol. 13, No. 5  

Meet Mayor Tim

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