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DECEMBER 6–12, 2012 | FREE | VOL. 32 NO. 23 | PITCH.COM


DECEMBER 6–12, 2012 | VOL. 32 NO. 23 E D I T O R I A L

Editor Scott Wilson Managing Editor Justin Kendall Music Editor David Hudnall Staff Writers Charles Ferruzza, Ben Palosaari Editorial Operations Manager Deborah Hirsch Calendar Editor Berry Anderson Clubs Editor Abbie Stutzer Food Blogger, Web Editor Jonathan Bender Proofreader Brent Shepherd Contributing Writers Tracy Abeln, Theresa Bembnister, April Fleming, Dan Savage, Abbie Stutzer Intern Nadia Imafidon

A R T

Art Director Ashford Stamper Contributing Photographers Angela C. Bond, Chris Mullins, Lauren Phillips, Sabrina Staires, Brooke Vandever Design Intern Chloe George

P R O D U C T I O N

Production Manager Christina Riddle Multimedia Designer Vu Radley

A D V E R T I S I N G

Sales Manager Erin Carey Senior Classified Multimedia Specialist Steven Suarez Classified Multimedia Specialist Andrew Disper Multimedia Specialists Michelle Acevedo, Kirin Arnold, Collin Click, Page Olson Director of Marketing & Operations Jason Dockery Digital Marketing Manager Keli Sweetland

C I R C U L A T I O N

Circulation Director Mike Ryan

B U S I N E S S

Accounts Receivable Jodi Waldsmith Publisher Joel Hornbostel

ALL ABOARD? A divided downtown decides if the streetcar is a development engine or a luxury vehicle. BY DAV I D H U D N A L L

S O U T H C O M M

Chief Executive Officer Chris Ferrell Chief Financial Officer Patrick Min Chief Operating Officer Rob Jiranek Chief Marketing Officer Susan Torregrossa Chief Technology Officer Matt Locke Business Manager Eric Norwood Director of Digital Sales & Marketing David Walker Director of Accounting Todd Patton Creative Director Heather Pierce Director of Online Content/Development Patrick Rains

N A T I O N A L

A D V E R T I S I N G

VMG Advertising 888-278-9866, vmgadvertising.com Senior Vice President of Sales Susan Belair Senior Vice President of Sales Operations Joe Larkin

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HIGH VOLUME Read my lips: The loud, busy Louie’s Wine Dive is pretty good. BY C H A R L E S F E R R U Z Z A

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B A C K P A G E . C O M

Vice President Sales & Marketing Carl Ferrer Business Manager Jess Adams Accountant David Roberts

D I S T R I B U T I O N

The Pitch distributes 45,000 copies a week and is available free throughout Greater Kansas City, limited to one copy per reader. Additional copies may be purchased for $5 each, payable at The Pitch’s office in advance. The Pitch may be distributed only by The Pitch’s authorized independent contractors or authorized distributors. No person may, without prior written permission of The Pitch, take more than one copy of each week’s issue. Mail subscriptions: $22.50 for six months or $45 per year, payable in advance. Application to mail at second-class postage rates is pending at Kansas City, MO 64108.

KC MAST E R PI E C E T HE AT E R Documentary filmmakers aim to prove that KC’s barbecue is best. BY J O N AT H A N B E N D E R

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C O P Y R I G H T

The contents of The Pitch are Copyright 2012 by KC Communications, LLC. No portion may be reproduced in whole or in part by any means without the express written permission of the publisher. The Pitch address: 1701 Main, Kansas City, MO 64108 For information or to leave a story tip, call: 816-561-6061 Editorial fax: 816-756-0502 For classifieds, call: 816-218-6759 For retail advertising, call: 816-218-6702

ON T HE COVE R

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QUESTIONNAIRE PLOG FEATURE F I LT E R STAGE FILM CAFÉ FAT CITY MUSIC NIGHTLIFE SAVAGE LOVE

MEANWHI LE AT PI TC H. C O M

ILLUSTRATION BY KEITH NEGLEY

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MIKE TYSON brings his insane one-man show to Kansas City. OKLAHOMA JOE’S bottles its fry seasoning, teases new olathe concept. Barbecue world keeps spinning even without WONDER BREAD.

M O N T H X X–X X , 2 0 0 X

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S A B R I N A S TA I R E S

 Hometown: Kansas City, Missouri Current neighborhood: Waldo Who or what is your sidekick? The girlfriend,

Angela, and my buddies Kevin Barth and Mark Ptasnik

What career would you choose in an alternate reality? Superhero, something in the vein

By Salon Professional

of Batman. Billionaire playboy with an unlimited supply of cool gadgets and trained in multiple forms of badassery — minus the part of my parents being brutally murdered, of course.

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What was the last local restaurant you patronized?

W h a t ’ s your favorite charity? The Humane

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DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

What local phenomenon do you think is overrated? Power & Light. My buddy Mark disagrees. He loves it. It’s his most favorite place in the whole wide world.

Where do you like to take out-of-town guests? To a ballgame, Jack Stack and Westport

Finish this sentence: “Kansas City got it right when …” The 1/8-cent tax was passed for

improvements to the zoo. My plan to nab a penguin has been set in motion.

pitch.com

Favorite person or thing to follow on Twitter:

SaveOurChiefs

Person or thing you find really irritating at this moment: I try not to let things irritate me too

much. It’s wasted energy. But if I had to pick something, it’d be the same 10 holiday songs I’m going to hear for the next month.

What subscription — print, digital, etc. — do you value most? Condé Nast Traveler

“On my day off, I like to …” Be a lazy bum; watch

by Matt Murphy

quite fascinated by Cirque du Soleil shows.

“In five years, I’ll be …” Living life. I imagine I’ll

Peanut in Lee’s Summit

What movie do you watch at least once a year?

Dazed and Confused

“People might be surprised to know that I …” Am

Where do you drink? The

.com. I like to take trips as often as possible. Helps me keep my sanity and from getting burnt out.

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Center, preferably an NBA team. I enjoy my basketball. Unfortunately, I think the ship sailed on that a long time ago.

football; and hang out with my dog and cat, Zeke and Hobo Kitty.

Favorite place to spend your paycheck: Expedia

INDOORS & INSURED

“Kansas City needs …” A tenant for the Sprint

Westport Flea Market

Society

WINTER BIKE STORAGE

“Kansas City screwed up when it …” Used tax dollars to renovate Kauffman Stadium. Another $100 million or so, we could’ve had a brand-new downtown ballpark. When the lease is up and the stadium is more than 60 years old, what’s going to happen? Gonna guess a downtown ballpark.

be happy and visiting the beach as often as possible.

What TV show do you make sure you watch? The Walking Dead and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia

take(s) up a lot of space in my iTunes:

Nothing. I’m probably one of three people in this world without an iPod. If I did have one, it would have a lot of Rage Against the Machine. When I am listening to the radio, 99 percent of the time it’s either sports or stand-up comedy.

Celebrity you’d like to ride the Mamba with at Worlds of Fun: Justin Bieber, so when we got to

our highest point, I could toss her out. I think I’d be due a lot of high-fives for that one.

What local tradition do you take part in every year? Going to the Royals’ home opener.

Last book you read: The Somebody Obsession Favorite day trip: Either a trip up to the Omaha Zoo or a trip down to Oklahoma City to catch a Thunder game.

What is your most embarrassing dating moment? To protect the innocent, I’ll just say a QuikTrip taquito bag was involved.

Interesting brush with the law? None. Despite my middle name being “Rebel,” I’m quite the law-abiding citizen. Perhaps I should live up to my middle name and start getting involved in some nefarious activities. Describe a recent triumph: I broke my leg back

in April. Probably should’ve been away from the ring for close to six months. Made it back in three. I’m a machine. Wyatt takes on Mark Sterling for the Metro Pro Championship December 8 in a three-match series — a singles match, a no-disqualification match and, if necessary, a ladder match — starting at 7 p.m. at the Turner Rec Center (831 South 55th Street, Kansas City, Kansas). pitch.com

MONTH


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PLOG

KILLER CHIEF M

any people woke up Saturday morning to the news that a Kansas City Chiefs player had killed his girlfriend and then taken his own life. The details trickled in. Within a few hours of the murder-suicide, the player’s identity was released: linebacker Jovan Belcher. The scene was horrific: Belcher, 25, had shot Kasandra Perkins, the mother of his 3-monthold daughter, Zoey, nine times, just before 8 a.m. Belcher’s mother was in the couple’s home at the time of the shooting. Belcher then drove to the team’s practice facility, where he held a gun to his head. He thanked head coach Romeo Crennel and general manager Scott Pioli. As the police sirens grew louder and officers converged on the Chiefs’ practice facility, Belcher shot himself in the head. In the immediate aftermath of the murdersuicide, the local and national media tried to interpret the uninterpretable story: the answer to the question why, the fact that it could never be answered. Had concussions played a factor in the killing? (The crime recalled the 2007 murder-suicide involving professional wrestler Chris Benoit, who killed his wife and 7-year-old son before hanging himself. Study of Benoit’s brain revealed that it resembled that of an 85-year-old Alzheimer’s patient.) Meanwhile, the Chiefs organization and the NFL had several tough decisions to make. The Chiefs were scheduled to play the Carolina Panthers at Arrowhead the next afternoon. The NFL told the Panthers to fly to Kansas City, and the franchise announced Saturday afternoon that the game would be played. The Chiefs left Belcher’s locker untouched. At the game, neither Belcher nor Perkins was mentioned. Instead, the team held a moment of silence for victims of domestic violence. “I do applaud the Chiefs for recognizing the situation as one of domestic violence,” says Janeé Hanzlick, associate director of Safehome, a domestic-violence shelter in Johnson County. Though Belcher was never charged with abusing Perkins, Hanzlick says it’s common for abuse victims to not call the police. “At Safehome, we have many, many victims

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of domestic violence who come to us and have never called law enforcement,” she says. The Chiefs defeated the Panthers 27–21. Crennel told the media after the game that he didn’t want to talk about Belcher’s suicide. “I think you will understand that and, hopefully, you will respect my wishes on that because it wasn’t a pretty sight, so I’m choosing not to talk about it,” he told the media. The finest moment came courtesy of quarterback Brady Quinn, who offered a forthright assessment in his postgame comments. “We live in a society of social networks, with Twitter pages and Facebook, and that’s fine, but we have contact with our work associates, our family, our friends, and it seems like half the time we are more preoccupied with our phone and other things going on instead of the actual relationships that we have right in front of us,” Quinn said. “Hopefully, people can learn from this and try to actually help if someone is battling something deeper on the inside than what they are revealing on a day-to-day basis.” In the immediate wake of the murdersuicide, Kansas City Star columnists Sam Mellinger and Yael Abouhalkah branded Belcher a “coward.” “The world now knows him as a monster,” Mellinger wrote. “What Belcher did on Saturday leaves a trail of people who loved him scarred for the rest of their lives, wondering if they ever really knew the man.” On Sunday, Deadspin posted an e-mail from someone claiming to be close to Belcher who painted a picture of a football player deteriorating due to head injuries and substance abuse. “When it comes to prescription medication it is unclear from my perspective whether it was diagnosed and authorized by the team or not,” the e-mailer wrote. “However I know he was under the influence of narcotics for pain and I’m sure the toxicology report will reflect this. However, Jovan drank ALOT.” A different e-mail said Belcher was frustrated by Perkins for failing classes at a local college and for not holding a job. NBC’s Bob Costas used his weekly editorial

pitch.com

Looking back at the media coverage of the Jovan Belcher murder-suicide.

Dwayne Bowe pays tribute to Belcher. during Sunday Night Football to call for stricter gun laws. Costas’ plea quoted a Fox Sports column by Jason Whitlock (formerly of the Star). “In the coming days, Jovan Belcher’s actions, and their possible connection to football, will be analyzed,” Costas said. “Who knows? But here, wrote Jason Whitlock, is what I believe: If Jovan Belcher didn’t possess a gun, he and Kasandra Perkins would both be alive today.” In his column, Whitlock reamed America for its religious devotion to football and guns. “All he [Belcher] could think to do in the immediate aftermath is rush to thank his football coach and football employer,” he wrote. “Belcher’s last moments on this earth weren’t spent thanking the mother who raised him or apologizing to the child he would orphan. His final words of gratitude and perhaps remorse were reserved for his football gods.” Sunday night, Chiefs receiver Dwayne Bowe tweeted a photo of himself pointing heavenward and wearing a red T-shirt, with a picture of Belcher among clouds and the phrase, “Love leaves a memory no one can steal.” Belcher’s name was misspelled “Javon” on the shirt. On 610 Sports’ Danny Parkins Show, Parkins and Mellinger debated using the word coward. Parkins argued that Belcher was likely suffering from mental illness. A subdued Mellinger

pitch.com

BY

BE N PA L O S A A R I

repeated several times that the now-orphaned 3-month-old Zoey was on his mind when he chose the word. “I can’t get that little girl out of my mind,” Mellinger said. The timeline of events was still being pieced together Tuesday evening. Sports Illustrated reported Monday that Belcher was “partying” in the Power & Light District with another woman Friday night. SI reported that Belcher and the woman became separated, and he went to the woman’s apartment building on Armour Boulevard to wait for her. The Star had previously reported that Belcher and Perkins argued around 1 a.m., after she attended a Trey Songz concert. KSHB Channel 41 later reported that Kansas City police had found Belcher sleeping in his Bentley around 2:50 a.m. outside the Armour Boulevard apartment building. He reportedly told police that he was “waiting for his girlfriend.” Belcher made a call on his cellphone; a woman came outside and let him into one of the apartments, where he spent the next few hours. Belcher arrived at his and Perkins’ home around 7 a.m., and the two argued. On Tuesday, the Star posted an “exclusive” story on the last hours of the lives of Belcher and Perkins, reporting that Belcher kissed Perkins on her forehead seconds after shooting her at 7:50 a.m. Belcher then apologized to his mother, kissed Zoey and fled to the Chiefs practice facility, five miles away. The Star report says Belcher, who exited his Bentley with a gun to his head, met Pioli in the parking lot. “I killed her,” he said. Pioli tried to talk Belcher into dropping the gun, the Star reported. Belcher thanked the GM, asked if he and Clark Hunt would care for his daughter and said, “Guys, I have to do this.” He then knelt behind his car, made the sign of a cross over his chest and shot himself. In Kansas City, there have been 14 homicides this year in which one partner killed the other. Safehome’s Hanzlick says in Johnson County last year, seven of the 11 murders were committed by domestic partners.

E-mail ben.palosaari@pitch.com

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Fast-forward 10 years. It’s 2022. No one has put on a winter coat in years. A Clinton is back in the White House. And the streets are alive in downtown Kansas City, Missouri. Lured by an abundance of jobs and culture, young people from all over the Midwest are flocking to KC, capital of what the world calls the Silicon Prairie. The four corners of 16th Street and Main — once occupied by grim parking lots — have sprouted a mixed-use development, the headquarters of a soon-to-gopublic tech firm, an artisanal pie shop, and a high-end fashion boutique. Zipping up and down the corridor of all this economic development is the tool that started it all: a modern streetcar line connecting a new generation of hip, creative, wired urbanites. Such is the utopia envisioned by Mayor Sly James and members of the Kansas City, Missouri, City Council, who have spent the past year working to put their streetcar proposal in front of voters. On Tuesday, December 11, the matter will be settled. That’s the day mail-in ballots are due back from the 697 downtown residents tapped to decide whether the city builds a $100 million, two-mile streetcar line between Union Station and the River Market. There is, of course, an alternative scenario to this ShangriLa, and you don’t need a time machine to see it. Just go to Tampa, Florida. In 2002, Tampa opened a streetcar line with similar goals in mind. The 2.7-mile line connects the city’s downtown 8 2T HTEH EP IPTICTHC H D EM CE BH E RX 6 - 1 2X, , 22001 0 2 X pitch.com OM NT X–X pitch.com

with Channelside (a shopping and entertainment district) and Ybor City, a historic neighborhood. Community leaders said it would attract conventions and new businesses. Ten years on, the Tampa streetcar is bleeding red ink. Property-tax revenues are falling, ridership is down, and a $5 million endowment it has used to cover shortfalls is nearly dry. It has reduced its hours, operating from noon to 10 p.m. most days, and now arrives at stops only every 20 minutes, making it an unfeasible mode of transportation even for a downtown lunch trip. “There are areas for improvement, such as extending hours of operation and boosting [rider] frequency, but that would require a greater financial subsidy,” says Marcia Mejia, public information officer for HART (Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority), which operates Tampa’s streetcar. Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn voted against the streetcar a decade ago, when he was on the City Council. He didn’t want to levy a tax on downtown business owners, and he said there were better uses for the $55 million that the federal government would contribute to the project. Now, in a cruel twist of civic fate, it has fallen to Buckhorn to rescue a project he opposed from the start. “We’re pregnant,” Buckhorn told the Tampa Port Authority board in September, after it threatened to yank an annual $100,000 subsidy for the streetcar. “We’re stuck with it [the streetcar]. We can’t stop it and we need to fix it.” Is KC the next Tampa? Or is it the next Portland, Oregon — the city to which advocates invariably point as proof of streetcars’ potential? Nobody knows — not the cranky libertarians who oppose it, not the public-transportation evangelists who support it, and not the handful of people with ballots in their hands right now. It’s a big, fat bet. But for the mayor and the City Council, it’s the best kind of bet: the kind made with someone else’s money.

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gain and again, proposals to build light rail in KC have ended in embarrassing failure — with most of the embarrassing parts, in recent years, coming courtesy of gondola fetishist and

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transportation activist Clay Chastain. (Search Chastain’s name at pitch.com for a stroll down memory lane.) Voters in 2006 approved his $1 billion plan for a 27-mile train line linking midtown and KCI. The City Council, arguing that Chastain’s vision was vague and unfeasible, repealed the ballot measure in 2007. “Chastain hadn’t done any real homework,” Councilman Russ Johnson tells The Pitch. “It took a lot of money away from the city’s bus system, and it was just way too expensive. It put the city in a difficult place because a project like that just couldn’t be done.” The repeal sparked an exhausting run of litigation from Chastain, who continues to argue that the repeal was unconstitutional. Meanwhile, another light-rail ballot measure was defeated in 2008. “I became convinced after 2008 that light rail would never pass in Kansas City,” says Johnson, chairman of the city’s Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and, for all intents and purposes, the streetcar point man. “We’re a big city, 320 square miles. You just can’t build enough light rail at a low enough cost that voters will approve paying for it. The more light rail you build, the more people like it. But the more it costs, the less people like it. Somewhere in there is an equilibrium point, and if that equilibrium point is less than 50 percent, you lose. And that was the deal in Kansas City.” In reviewing the 2008 ballot results, Johnson and the council stumbled upon something curious: There was no real correlation between the proximity of voters to a proposed rail line and their votes. Light rail was unpopular in both the Northland and in southern parts of the city, near where it extended to Bannister Road. Basically, people residing more than five miles from City Hall tend to oppose light rail. But people who live within that radius consistently vote in favor of light rail. “Not everybody wants to live downtown in a high-rise condo, and not everybody wants to live in the suburbs,” Johnson says. “So the question became, ‘How do you build something that will appeal to that particular downtown demographic?’ We started looking for a plan that would fit the needs of an urban area, but not necessarily the transportation solution you’d use at Barry Road and I-29.”


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As Johnson and the council considered that question, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 was starting to distribute $1.5 billion in TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grants as part of the Obama administration’s effort to stimulate the economy and reduce U.S. energy dependence. “Around that time [Kansas City Area Transit Authority General Manager] Mark Huffer approached me and said, ‘Russ, I think we should take a hard look at a streetcar.’ ”

K

ansas City is hardly alone in the push for streetcars. Los Angeles, New Orleans, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Tucson and dozens of other U.S. cities have new projects before voters, under construction or already up and running. But KC has a chronically high per-capita murder rate, along with an unaccredited public-school system and sewer lines downtown that date back to the 1800s. It’s not the first place you’d think to put a $100 million streetcar line. And a streetcar isn’t the first mode of transportation that leaps to mind when you think of ways to ease a spread-out metro’s commuter crunch. Light rail moves fast, around 55 mph. Streetcars, even modern machines such as the one proposed for KC, are slow. They travel on tracks and remain at the mercy of traffic lights, congestion and speed limits. “My opinion of streetcars has declined to some extent,” says Yonah Freemark, an urbanist who studies architecture, planning and transportation and writes for The Atlantic’s Cities blog. “They’re chosen by city leaders because they’re relatively cheap to build, but they often don’t provide the transit improvements that cities need — for the pure and simple reason that they operate in the same lane as cars.” Freemark continues: “The city with the most acclaim for its streetcar system is Portland. And it is a well-used system. But the trains operate at very slow speeds, often less than 10 miles per hour. When they’re that slow, yes, you can attract some riders — people who are already downtown and want to hop on a train. But if you need to actually get somewhere, you want something that moves closer to 20 miles per hour. Since streetcars travel such short distances,

All Aboard?

at such slow speeds, it’s often faster to simply walk to your destination.” But streetcar advocates aren’t selling speed. For them, it’s about growing business. In theory, a streetcar’s fixed route provides businesses and property owners along its path with financial security. “It is a n econom icdevelopment tool. That’s a fact,” Johnson says. “All infrastructure is an economic tool. We put in sewer lines because we want people to build houses along them and create a tax base. It’s the same with roads, police stations, fire stations, electricity. That’s what infrastructure is. It’s a foundation upon which you build economic activity and positive community impact.” Streetcars also look a lot like what urban theorist Richard Florida has written about over the past decade. In his best-selling books The Rise of the Creative Class, Cities and the Creative Class and The Flight of the Creative Class, Florida argues that in order to compete in a postindustrial economy, cities must attract a “creative class” — essentially tech entrepreneurs and bohemians. Lure those people, he says, and economic development will follow. It’s a sexy theory, and it has done plenty for Florida’s personal economy, but there isn’t a tremendous amount of empirical evidence to support it. This hasn’t stopped cities across the country from trumpeting their arts scenes and building cool-looking things like streetcars in order to court these phantom creatives. Sungyop Kim, an assistant professor of architecture, urban planning and design at the University of Missouri–Kansas City who is in favor of the KC proposal, backs the streetcaras-stimulus argument. “We’re talking about a changing

BY DAVID HUDNALL

culture,” he says. “My research suggests that urban areas will continue to be viewed in a more favorable manner by new generations. There will be a higher concentration in urban areas and a significant increase in single-family households moving forward. Young working professionals tend to favor urban amenities like streetcars, and you’re at an advantage as a city if you can offer them. You can’t look at a streetcar as simply an economic decision. It’s more of a political decision, based on the way culture in America is changing.” Of course, a streetcar line built with federal dollars is both an economic decision and a political one. The initial $1.5 billion TIGER investments were followed by rounds of grants: $600 million to transportation projects in 2010, $526 million in 2011 and $500 million in 2012. (Only some of this money was allocated to streetcar projects.) Given that stimulus flow, why not submit a streetcar proposal? continued on page 10

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All Aboard? continued from page 9 One reason: KC discovered earlier this year that the feds arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t as loose with big grants as those numbers suggest.

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n 2009, the KCATA proposed a streetcar project that would cost $150 million and applied for a starter grant from TIGER to help pay for it. The answer was no. In 2010, the city partnered with Jackson County Executive Mike Sanders on an application for a federal Alternatives Analysis grant â&#x20AC;&#x201D; about $540,000 to study KCâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s publictransportation needs. (Sanders wanted to study underutilized rail corridors for commuter-rail use in eastern Jackson County.) This one was awarded; the county got twothirds of the grant, and the city took a third. â&#x20AC;&#x153;That was a watershed moment for the streetcar,â&#x20AC;? Johnson says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s one thing to go to the council and say, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Hey, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve got a great idea.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; They say, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Great.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; Then you say, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Can I have some money for it?â&#x20AC;&#x2122; And they say, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Well, thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not such a great idea.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; So getting federal backing was important. All of a sudden, I could say, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re going to study this and educate people on it, and the federal government is paying for it, so thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s obviously some merit to it. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not some Clay Chastain back-of-the-napkin plan.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; â&#x20AC;? Johnson continues: â&#x20AC;&#x153;We went into that study with a very determined mind-set. It was not a study where we were going to say, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;OK, streetcar sounds good, could be good, but letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s move on.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; We knew that if the streetcar came out as the best alternative for our needs, we would move immediately into implementation.â&#x20AC;? Emboldened by the study, City Hall drew up a new streetcar plan, which is the proposal now before voters. It also filed a petition, this past February, to create a Transportation Development District. Nobody would be talking about streetcars right now had the city not established this special district, a bong-shaped area that encompasses roughly everything south of the Missouri River, east of Broadway, west of Locust, and north of Union Station. Basically, it allows the city to circumvent a proven-loser citywide vote by confining the streetcar ballot to residents within the TDD. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s about 3,600 registered voters, only 460 of whom returned ballots in the election about whether to create the TDD. That measure passed in August, 319â&#x20AC;&#x201C;141, setting up the December 11 election on whether to build that $100 million streetcar. Of the TDDâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s registered voters, only 697 applied to receive the mail-in ballots for the streetcar measure. Johnson points out that 697 of 3,600 is an 18-percent turnout â&#x20AC;&#x201D; about average for a nonpresidential election. He also notes that TDDs are designed to do exactly what the streetcar TDD is doing. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The point of TDDs is to create a transportation project that would normally not occur through other means,â&#x20AC;? he says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Otherwise, why have the Transportation Development District statute at all?â&#x20AC;? But so few people voting on a project this big doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t sound average to some people. In fact, it sounds a little undemocratic. Keith Novorr, owner of Michaelâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Fine

The Transportation Development District Clothing, at 1830 Main, says, â&#x20AC;&#x153;When youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve got a situation where thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a couple hundred people voting on a project of this magnitude, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s legal, I guess. But is it ethical? I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t think so.â&#x20AC;? Rocky Horowitz, owner of Bob Jones Shoes, at 1914 Grand, adds: â&#x20AC;&#x153;This is an issue that will impact the entire downtown for years to come, and itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s going to be decided by a lot of people who happen to be renting apartments downtown right now and might just as well be gone in six months.â&#x20AC;? Downtown property owners, though, object to the planâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s financial architecture more than the balloting process. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s because if it passes, theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll largely be the ones paying for it. In June, when a fourth round of TIGER grants was awarded, KCâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s bid for $25 million (to cover a quarter of the streetcar project) was denied. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It is increasingly clear in todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s political and economic climate in Washington that if we want something done, we will need to do it ourselves,â&#x20AC;? Mayor James said at the time. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We can and will make this happen.â&#x20AC;? James and the city were able to locate about $17 million in other grants, but the city plans to issue and to back about $80 million in bonds to pay for the construction of the streetcar line. Most of that repayment would come from a 1-percent sales-tax increase for businesses in the TDD, such as Novorrâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s and Horowitzâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, with other funding derived from a variety of assessments (read: taxes) on property in the TDD (see sidebar). The streetcar proposal on the ballot calls for the city to contribute a dinky $2.3 million to the lineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s construction and $2 million a year toward a projected annual operating cost of $2.8 million. That puts the heaviest tax burden on commercial-property owners, many of whom donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t live within the TDD and are therefore unable to vote on the streetcar. This idea â&#x20AC;&#x201D; that, say, a 23-year-old barista renting a loft in the Crossroads has more say in this election than a longtime downtown business owner who lives in Brookside â&#x20AC;&#x201D; has sparked more than a few cries of â&#x20AC;&#x153;taxation without representation.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;This is a strange, regressive tax that we didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t even have an opportunity to vote on,â&#x20AC;? says Dick Snow, owner of Bazookaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, the strip club at 1717 Main. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The people voting on it arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t going to be the ones paying the taxes on it. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s just not a fair tax.â&#x20AC;?


THE BREAKDOWN z Where would the funds come from to build this $100 million streetcar line? Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) grants:

$17.3 million Utility contribution (to relocate water lines beneath the tracks):

$4.5 million Federal Transit Administration funds from the KCATA:

$500,000 Bond proceeds:

$73.5 million The city:

$2.3 million z How would that $73.5 million (plus interest) in bond debt be paid off? Through a 1-percent sales tax at businesses within the TDD and special annual assessments over the next 25 years. There are fi ve kinds of assessments: 1. Commercial property: 48 cents for each $100 of assessed value. (For commercial property in Missouri, assessed value is 32 percent of market value.) The owner of a $2 million office building would pay an extra $3,000 in property taxes a year. 2. Residential property: 70 cents for each $100 of assessed value. (For residential property in Missouri, assessed value is 19 percent of market value.) The owner of a $200,000 condo would pay an extra $266 in property taxes a year. 3. City property: $1.04 for each $100 of assessed value. This comes to about $810,000 from the city annually. 4. Nonprofit property: 40 cents for each $100 of assessed value. But that’s only on market values over $300,000. A nonprofit with a market value of $300,000 or below wouldn’t pay anything extra in taxes. A nonprofit with a market value of $500,000 would pay $256 in property taxes a year. 5. Parking spaces: Commercial surface parking lots would pay an assessment of $54.75 a year per parking space.

z Where would it run? From Third Street and Grand in the River Market to Union Station, primarily on Main Street. The current plan calls for 11 stops along the way.

z How would it affect traffic on Main Street? Main Street would be reconfigured with a dedicated center turn lane for both directions, to avoid blocking the streetcar’s north-south movements. On-street parking on Main would become permanent — instead of off-peak only — to ensure consistency in traffic and streetcar movement. The parallel streets Walnut and Baltimore (one block east and west of Main, respectively) would be converted to two-way traffic to provide alternate routes for cars and trucks.

z Who would manage operations? The Kansas City Streetcar Authority, a nonprofit corporation. The city would own the infrastructure.

z How fast could it go? Never faster than 35 mph because modern streetcars run in the same traffic lanes as cars. It’s estimated that a trip from the River Market to Union Station would take 13 minutes.

z How much would it cost to ride? Nothing. Fares would be free for all riders.

“They [property owners] don’t have a say on the school district’s levy, either, and it’s 10 times the size of the streetcar’s assessment,” Johnson counters. “And, by the way, they only had 3-percent turnout in their last school-district election — 3 percent voting on a much bigger budget than the streetcar. So this whole idea that businesses don’t get to vote — I’m sorry, but businesses are not people. They don’t get to vote.” Crosby Kemper III, the director of the Kansas City Public Library and a downtown resident, objects to the proposal’s tax increases and the city’s rising debt load. He considers a streetcar in KC a pointless luxury item. “This is a cultural amenity that has an appeal to upscale 20-somethings and 30-somethings, and it will only marginally increase the likelihood that people will move downtown,” he says. “On top of that, the city has picked a lowdensity area without any real commuter usage. Bus routes actually serve the working poor. They help them get to work. This streetcar will be used by tourists, shoppers and lawyers who can afford to bill a two-hour lunch. I call it the take-a-lawyer-to-lunch trolley.” He continues: “You can justify projects like this in New York, Washington, San Francisco — cities with huge traffic problems. We don’t have a traffic problem here. We don’t have a dense population. It’s just such bad public policy.” Ryan Maybee, of the Rieger Hotel Grill & Exchange, at 1924 Main, is both a downtown business owner and a Crossroads resident. He’s voting for the streetcar. “I will say that, from a business owner’s perspective, I’m concerned about the continuing increase in the sales tax down here,” he says. “That’s a bigger issue to me than the propertytax increase. Our property taxes will go up, but it’s really such a small amount that it’s completely irrelevant. The owner of our building and I have worked out a deal where we’re going to split the increase in taxes. But it’s virtually nothing. It’s definitely not enough of a reason to slow the clear renaissance we’ve been seeing downtown over the last five years.”

I

f this streetcar proposal is defeated — which seems unlikely, given the results of the TDD formation election — don’t expect it to go away. “The TDD could call for another election on the exact same questions,” Johnson says, not-

From left: The mayor, Johnson and Sanders strike a future pose. ing that Parkville voted on riverboat gambling four times before passing it. “If it doesn’t pass, we’ll look at the reasons it didn’t, make corrective measures and move forward with it.” If it passes, you’ll see streetcars in three years. And to its advocates, the Union Station– River Market connector is just a starter line, the beginning of a larger plan that would spread throughout the city. Initial meetings with other neighborhoods and community groups vying for expansion have already been held. Service connecting the Union Station stop with UMKC is the most popular proposal so far, though expansions to 18th Street and Vine, Southwest Boulevard and Independence Avenue have also been floated. “I’m a big advocate of moving forward immediately and doing the homework necessary to figure out where to go next, and to make the business case to do it,” Johnson says. But how useful would a citywide streetcar system really be? Why take a streetcar from UMKC to the Crossroads when you can drive there in half the time, and when parking outside downtown isn’t much of an issue? Douglas Stone, a lawyer at Polsinelli Shughart who has worked closely with Johnson on the budget and finances of the streetcar, says it’s all part of changing Kansas Citians’ perceptions about transportation. “I’ve got a 16-year-old son,” Stone says. “He would take a car from the bathroom to the bedroom if he could. That’s how we’ve raised his generation. I grew up in New York, in the Bronx. I was taking a bus and train to school every day when I was 14 years old. That’s how I was raised. And that’s how this next generation is going to be raised. Once people touch, feel, see this streetcar, the desire for it — and the desire to expand it — is going to grow. It just is. “If we had done this 15 years ago, KC would be a very different place right now,” he continues. “There are always going to be people who are comfortable with the status quo. That’s how you get left behind. People say, ‘We’re not Portland.’ Well, that’s not the way to think about it. Portland became Portland. Seattle became Seattle. Kansas City needs to become Kansas City.”

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WEEK OF DECEMBER 6-12 | BY BERRY ANDERSON

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PAG E

FILM More than a shadow of a doubt about Hitchcock.

FRIDAY

12.7

s Kansa enting ne Docum li g in divid City’s

21

PAG E

CAFÉ

TRUST IN TROOST

Dive for Waldo at Louie’s.

26 PAG E

MUSIC FORECAST Get your bluegrass card Punched Tuesday.

A founding father of Kansas City, Benoist Troost was a Dutch physician who helped develop the land between what’s now Broadway and Troost. Since then, the dynamic in that part of the city has changed dramatically. Kevin Bryce’s documentary, We Are Superman, examines the transformation of a specific part of that area, around 31st Street and Troost. The Pitch asked Bryce about his film, which premieres this weekend at Screenland Crossroads (1656 Washington, 816-421-9700). Showings are at 7:30 p.m. Friday; 2:30, 4 and 6 p.m. Satur-

T H U R S D AY | 1 2 .6 |

F R I D AY | 12 .7 |

XXX-MAS SPECTACLE

FIRST FRIDAY HIT LIST

D

The Stairway Art Space, a corridor outside the downtown offices of HNTB (715 Kirk Drive), is home to new works by local artists, thanks to in-house engineer and curator Jason Lytle. Tonight’s reception shows The New E R MO Machine Age by Lawrence artist Marie McKenzie, who sands down repurT A INE posed wood scraps, then ONL .COM PITCH polishes them to seem like corroded metal or discarded machine parts. Stairway is open from 5 to 8 p.m. (and by appointment). Ask Marie about what’s real, what’s imaginary, and her concerns for the environmental impact of industry and mass production. Within view of the midtown Costco’s parking lot is another off-the-usual-track First

EVENTS

D AV I D P O L O N S K Y

rag queens, Jewish satire, a song called “God Bless Ye Femmy Lesbians” and copious amounts of nontraditional holiday laughs are on tap when the Kinsey Sicks bring their seasonal spectacle, Oy in a Manger, to the Folly Theater (300 West 12th Street, 816-474-4444) at 8 p.m. KC’s Spencer Brown (aka Daisy Bucket) has performed with the “dragapella” quartet as “Trampolina” since 2008. “At one point in the show, Trampy recalls the time she did ‘independent movies’ (porn),” Brown says, “and sings it in a familiar song called ‘Oh Hoey Night.’ ” Ticket sales from the show benefit the AIDS Service Center of Greater Kansas City. Buy them ($25–$70) at follytheater.com.

day; and 7 p.m. Sunday. (Watch the trailer at wearesuperman-themovie.com.) The Pitch: What’s your personal connection to 31st and Troost? Bryce: I took the bus to and from UMKC, and the racial and economic dividing line of Troost Avenue became quickly apparent. After graduation, I moved close to Troost and began working for a nonprofit at the intersection. I learned there is a story of Troost that isn’t as often told. How far back historically does the film go? We briefly mention the history of the Osage Nation in the area, but the film focuses heavily on post-World War II Troost.

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We dig into the systematic efforts by the real-estate and banking industries, neighborhood associations and school districts that caused the divide. What’s going on now at 31st and Troost, and how is it transforming KC? In a time when prejudice is glossed over and progress is built on the backs of the poor, we are witnessing a movement of men, women and children who are supporting, encouraging and growing together, eliminating prejudice and stereotype, setting an example that ought to be understood and implemented, not only throughout the city but the country. Friday spot. The Barbershop Gallery (33rd Street and Gillham) provides a hospitable spread and this month features functional porcelain pottery by Anne Mulvihill and fiber works by Susan Hill. That exhibition, Shared Language, is open from 6 to 8 p.m. (and Saturday from noon to 4 p.m.). A one-night-only event is Field Trip Publishing’s Snowy Mountain Wintertime Showcase, at Utilitarian Workshop (1659 Summit). Matt Jacobs, Lee Piechocki, Aaron Storck, Jaimie Warren and Erin Zona have collaborated to make limited-edition multiples. Candy sculpture sets, wooden puzzles, an anamorphic print with viewing tube, and a costume-kit prize bag await. Matt Jacobs joins David Rhoads in presenting new works at City Ice Arts (2015 Campbell) in an exhibition titled Playtime. At tonight’s opening reception (from 6 to 10), these two self-described formalists present their latest life-inspired continued on page 14 DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

THE PITCH

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S AT U R D AY | 1 2 . 8 |

THE DEAD GIRLS @RECORDBAR

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f you were wearing short pants and eating Ghostbusters cereal from 1986 to 1990, chances are good that you were a regular viewer of the original Pee-wee’s Playhouse. The cult favorite won 15 Emmys. It featured claymation, chroma key and stop-motion animation and reportedly had a budget of $325,000 per episode. Essential to the show’s success was artist Wayne White. A documentary about White’s life, art and search for balance, Beauty Is Embarrassing, is the first installment of KCPT Channel 19’s Community Cinema series. The free 11 a.m. screening takes place at Tivoli Cinemas (4050 Pennsylvania, 816-561-5222). For a list of the series’ films (on the second Saturday of each month), see kcpt.org and click on “events.” continued from page 13 sculptures, paintings and drawings (many created while they shared a studio). Observe the dialogue between a painter whose work thrusts out into three-dimensional space and a sculptor who paints with objects. It stays up through January 19.  — TRACY ABELN

FIRST FRIDAY PARTY ROUNDUP

Presented by

Todd Bolender’s The Nutcracker is the heart of Kansas City’s holiday season! As soon as the lights dim, you’ll be transported to a magical place. From the magnificent sets and costumes to the acclaimed Kansas City Symphony playing Tchaikovsky’s wondrous music, you’ll witness some of the most glorious dancing on earth. At the renowned

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DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

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Kultured Chameleon (1739 Oak). Phil Shafer’s Sikenomics Holiday Pop-Up Shop stays open all weekend, but today’s festivities include DJ Jah Quality Christmas singing at Quality Hill and spiked cider. Buy artwork, T-shirts, toys and button sets from 6 to 10 p.m. For more infamily-friendly and guaranteed to melt your formation, see kansascityartgallery.com. ice-cold, Scrooge-y disposition. For more inSlap-n-Tickle Gallery (504 East 18th Street). formation, see qualityhillplayhouse.com. December here means that it’s time for Whisky X-mas, a local art and holiday shopping soiree LES MISÉRABLES’ LAST CALL set to the music of Molly Gene One Whoaman Only 17 days remain until Les Misérables Band and Whiskey for the Lady. The party opens in theaters, but the 25th-anniversary goes from 6 to 11 (music at 8), and credit cards stage version at the Music Hall (301 West 13th are accepted. Street, 816-513-5000) runs through Sunday. VML Wise Gallery (2020 Baltimore). The For tickets to today’s two performances, at 2 KC advertising and marketing agency is and 8 p.m.($30–$110), see kcconvention.com officially opening this third-floor gallery and click on “upcoming events.” with a group art exhibition called 20/20 Vision — What a Sight. The opening recepS U N D AY | 12 . 9 | tion and 40-artist show includes painting, Dancer: Arielle Espie. photography, sculpture, and free beer and A PERFECT CIRCLE Photography: Kenny Johnson. wine, from 6 to 9 p.m. Five years ago, after Krista Blackwood and the vocal octet she conducted, Octarium, had garnered national attention for their unified S AT U R D AY | 12 . 8 | sound and musical synergy, she realized that the dynamic had changed. “I decided to stop SEASONAL OFFERINGS auditioning new singers,” Blackwood says. “I Would you rather sing or listen? The Qualwasn’t finding the sound I needed. Nor was ity Hill Playhouse (303 West 10th Street, I finding the choral sensibility and musical 816-421-1700) offers two options today: intuition it takes to step into an ensemble like Here We Come A-Caroling (3 p.m., $24), an Octarium.” Blackwood knew that this move audience sing-along, and Christmas in Song would number the group’s days. “No one re(7:30 p.m., $32), a cabaret revue of more than ally wants to scale back but no one, including two dozen standards. Both selections are


AP IMAGES/RICHARD DREW

S U N D AY | 1 2 .9 |

WHAT RHYMES WITH MITT?

S

ome of the people on the political scene are just silly. You don’t have to be angry at them,” Calvin Trillin told us last fall, ahead of a scheduled local reading. That event was canceled, and the year after was dominated by an election cycle of fairly robust anger. Hence Trillin’s new volume, Dogfight: The 2012 Presidential Campaign in Verse. The longtime New Yorker staff writer reads from the book at 1:30 p.m. today at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City (5801 West 115th Street, Overland Park). A copy of the $16 hardcover includes two tickets; — SCOTT WILSON call 913-384-3126 or see rainydaybooks.com.

myself, can make the kind of life commitment it would take to continue to grow,” she says. Today’s Lessons and Carols, a holiday performance at St. Mark Hope and Peace (3800 Troost, 816-561-9677) at 3 p.m., marks the end of the group’s last full season. “But I’ve found a funder who is willing to foot the bill for our holiday concerts for five years, starting this year,” Blackwood says. “And I can foresee that we will still do recording projects and the occasional appearance when all of the scheduling stars align.” Tickets cost $15 ($10 for students and seniors). See octarium.org for more information and a concert schedule.

SANTA’S SONIC SPECTACLE

There might not be a more over-the-top, off-the-chain production that comes to town for the holidays than the TransSiberian Orchestra. This year’s show, The Lost Christmas Eve, goes down at the Sprint Center (1407 Grand, 816-949-7000) at 3 and 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $32–$70.50, or approximately the same price as you spent on those seizure-inducing icicle lights for your front porch. See sprintcenter.com.

M O N D AY | 1 2 . 10 | HOUSE RULES FOR THE 1 PERCENT

The subject matter of playwright Wendy MacLeod’s work tends to skew toward awkward, complicated and generally whack. Her 1990 work, The House of Yes, is no exception. Of the play’s Pascal family, MacLeod has said, “It’s about an insularity I see in the upper classes, people who have cut themselves off from the rest of the world and are living by the rules they’ve invented.” Moving Target Theatre presents The House of Yes at the Fishtank Performance Studio (1715 Wyandotte, 816-809-7110) at 8 p.m. Directed by Darren Sextro, the play runs through December 16. This industry-night performance is followed by a reception with the cast and crew at Snow & Co. (1815 Wyandotte, 816-214-8921). Tickets

cost $15 for students and $18 for adults. Buy them and see the show’s schedule at houseofyeskc.brownpapertickets.com.

T U E S D AY | 1 2 . 11 | THE GIVING SPIRIT

Hope House helps more than 10,000 of the metro’s domestic-violence victims each year, and during the holidays, the nonprofit needs our help more than ever. At the Full Circle Fundraiser for Hope House, from 6 to 9 p.m. at Boozefish (1511 Westport Road, 816-561-5995), the wine bar is collecting used cell phones, new toys, hygiene products, gift cards and other wish-list items for the shelter. Also, Susan Grace Napier discusses her own story and reads from her book, Intimate Terrorist. Admission is free. See hopehouse.net or susangracenapier.com for more information.

W E D N E S D AY | 1 2 . 1 2 | RUMP SHAKIN’

The women behind Booty Jamz, the Wednesday-night dance throwdown at the Riot Room (4048 Broadway, 816-442-8179), know how to get the party started. “We can read the crowd and get girls to dance,” says Madeline Farrell, one-half of the BJ team. “And once you get the girls to dance, the guys will follow.” These days, Farrell and her partner, Wilson Vance, run the show on the heated patio, but they’ll move inside once winter hits. Yard beers for $2 and purple drinks for $3 get bodies moving, too. “We play strictly dance songs, mostly from the ’90s to now,” Farrell says. “Meek Mill, Big Sean and 2 Chainz are popular.” The danceoff (free for the ladies, bros pay $3) starts at 10 p.m. and is 21-and-older only. E-mail submissions to Filter editor Berry Anderson at calendar@pitch.com. Search our complete listings guide online at pitch.com.

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S TA G E

GIVE A HAND

Inspecting Carol is funnier than the Dickens.

BY

DEB OR A H HIRS CH

STREET TEAM

CYNTHIA LEVIN

Each week, Pitch Street Team cruises around to the hottest clubs, bars and concerts. You name it, we will be there. While we are out, we hand out tons of cool stuff. So look for the Street Team... We will be looking for you!

F

props); Dorothy (Nancy Marcy), Sidney’s rom the preshow cellphone-and-candywife, who can’t easily lose her English acw rapper a nnouncements by stage cent; Phil (Phil Fiorini), a middle-aged nerd manager M.J. (Jessica Biernaki Jensen), who complains about his back — and, as Inspecting Carol wraps its arms around the audience and says, Here goes. The Unicorn, Cratchit, having to carry a too-plump and too-large Luther (Beckett Pfanmiller), who with the Kansas City Actors Theatre and is 11 and too old to still be playing Tiny Tim. UMKC Theatre, sends up seasonal sentiThe Soapbox players are waiting for an ment with this play within a play — a farce NEA rep. They’re not sure who it is or when within a farce, really — which combines elehe or she might show up, but they’re worried. ments of Noises Off, Waiting for Guffman and, particularly, Nikolai Gogol’s The Inspector Could it be Wayne (Patrick Du Laney), who General. More than just a Christmas Carol has dropped everything to follow his “bliss” as an actor and has come in to audition? spoof, though, it’s a feast of spontaneous, Kevin breaks the news: “We’re broke.” continual, uncontrollable laughter. “Of course we’re broke,” Larry (John Inspecting Carol, by Daniel Sullivan (and Rensenhouse), the group’s Scrooge, exthe Seattle Repertory Theatre), packs its plains. “We’re an arts organization.” (The inf luences into a box, then busts it open with precision mayhem. Directed by UMKC Unicorn’s box office should hold a ticket each night for Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback.) acting professor Theodore Swetz, the play Larry suggests a fundraiser. “This is the pokes obvious fun at the annual Dickens fundraiser,” Zorah responds in frustration, staple, but also takes on the writing and actmeaning the 12th-annual Christmas Carol ing processes and the marketing of theater production. It’s usually a companies. moneymaker, something The troupe in question Inspecting Carol the audience demands. But is the Soapbox Playhouse, Through December 23 Larry is bored. He searches whose actors are strugat the Unicorn Theatre, for ways to change it up, gling to get through a re3828 Main, 816-531-7529, having once recited all of hearsal of the shoestring unicorntheatre.org his lines in Spanish. “You show they somehow pull have any idea what it’s like off each Christmas season. to play these roles year after year?” he asks. Recent hire Kevin (Vincent Wagner) has “We get bored. Comprende?” been brought in to manage the theater’s His Spanish-language rendition, a protest finances, but he must explain to Zorah (Cathy Barnett), the long-struggling and against U.S. involvement in Central America, is one of the 1980s references that dates unconventional company director, that they have no money. “You don’t know who I was this 1992 show. Others: Joseph Campbell; Robert Mapplethorpe; and Zorah’s attempt when I started this place,” she tells him. to make the cast “multicultural” by add“I wanted to change people. … What did I ing an African-American character, Walter mean, change people? Into what?” He an(Thomas Tucker). But these anachronisms swers, “Nonsubscribers, maybe?” are forgiven when Rensenhouse enunciates This year, they learn that the National the word Nicaragua. Endowment for the Arts might not just reWalter, a young Army veteran, strugduce its grant but withhold it entirely due to gles not only to learn his lines but also to the Soapbox’s “significant artistic deficit.” know what they are as Larry initiates a lastLiable for the production’s significant bills minute rewrite. And Walter is set to play a in that case would be the founding members ghost whose costume includes a white hand. of this rock-bottom company. That includes “Ghosts are white,” goes the excuse. Sidney (Robert Gibby Brand), an older, laidThe government’s hand reaches into this back actor who walks around dragging the chains of his Marley’s ghost (among other fictional company, whose survival depends

Chris Isaak @ Uptown At left: Tucker, Biernaki Jensen, Barnett and Rensenhouse, in character; above: Barnett on public funding. The ambitious Soapbox Playhouse turns its panic into raucous slapstick, expertly executed by the Unicorn’s talented, real-life ensemble. Like hopeful gamblers, the Soapbox performers play the slots and pray for their alignment. But members of the audience, dizzy from all the action, end up with the real winnings.

Chris Isaak @ Uptown

E-mail deborah.hirsch@pitch.com

A L S O O N S TA G E The Soul Collector

Urban Core Group Meeting

The Unicorn opens a second show with a new play from local playwright Ron Simonian. December 6–23 on the Unicorn’s Jerome Stage.

A Devil Inside

This David Lindsay Abaire play is performed by UMKC Theatre through December 9, in Studio 116 of the Olson Performing Arts Center (4949 Cherry, 816-235-6222).

Christmas in Song

Through December 24 at Quality Hill Playhouse (See Filter, page 14, for more information.)

The British Invasion 2012

Central Standard Theatre hosts international performers December 6–16 at Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre (3614 Main). See cstkc.com for a description of the shows and artists, a performance schedule and tickets.

The House of Yes

Through December 16 at the Fishtank Performance Studio. (See Filter, page 15, for more information.)

A Spectacular Christmas

The holiday show at Musical Theater Heritage features classic Christmas songs from movies and musicals. Through December 23 at Off-Center Theatre (Crown Center, 2450 Grand, 816-842-9999, musicaltheaterheritage.com).

Urban Core Group Meeting

Upcoming Events 12.8 - Lamb of God @ Uptown 12.8 - Cody Simpson, Boys Like Girls @ Indie 12.14 - Almost Kiss @ Beaumont Club See more on the “promotions” link at p

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FILM

NOTORIOUS

The trouble with Hitchcock:

BY

It’s vertiginously misguided.

S C O T T W IL S ON

CARLOS ALAZRAQUI

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itchcock, a sort of fat-suit version of last year’s softheaded nostalgia trip My Week With Marilyn, brushes by with just enough suavity that you don’t notice right away how despicable it is. Whatever credit can be claimed for this short-lasting sleight of hand goes not to Anthony Hopkins, whose vulcanized impression of the master of suspense feels fussy and shallow, but to Helen Mirren. She plays Alma Reville, Hitchcock’s wife, as the latest in her recent line of bossy, sometimes royal, matriarchs, rearranging an increasingly familiar bouquet of thin-lipped scowls, prim clucks and conjugal resignation into something worth a look. She effectively conveys the frustrations of the Hitchcock-Reville glass ceiling — a constraint heavily and insultingly embellished here, to the benefit of neither cinema history nor the audience. There’s no disputing Reville’s intimate influence over her husband’s art, or that their collaboration favored his image, and a peek into the mechanics of that lifelong partnership might have been fascinating even with some dramatic license. But director Sacha Gervasi (Anvil: The Story of Anvil) and screenwriter John J. McLaughlin instead opt for all license and no drama. At every turn, Hitchcock is drearily anti-feminist and numbingly trite. Every woman here — including Scarlett Johansson as Janet Leigh and Jessica Biel as Vera Miles, both coolly glamorous, and Toni Collette as a Hitchcock employee — exists somewhere on a mommy spectrum that runs from enabler to castrator, with Reville given limited access to stops in between. And this version of Hitch needs mothering. Tantrum-prone, furtive, sexually arrested, he’s a cartoon outline of a figure whose wellmarbled eccentricities were, in real life, not as obvious as his movies suggest. There’s so much boy here that there’s not much room left for the man. He’s a Hitchcock astute enough to see through caddish screenwriter Whitfield Cook (Danny Huston, at his most vulpine) but unable to cope with Cook’s flattery of Reville (the most egregiously manufactured of the movie’s ham-fisted contrivances). He’s a Hitchcock

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Find MOVIE TIMES enraptured by a Leigh who knows enough to placate her director with a bag of candy corn. Hopkins’ easy homicidal glint makes casting sense, but the lazy fiction of this Hitchcock eludes the actor. A scene in which he empties the contents of an icebox into his artificial jowls is as grotesque as Gervasi intends, but Hopkins plays it and other feverish moments with a poorly tempered Lear impulse. However tragic the real Hitchcock’s more self-destructive habits may have been, this movie’s idea of them is no more refined than the crude re-enactments of an especially morbid Dateline NBC episode. Hopkins invests the part with too much shame and pathos for what turns out to be a twodimensional marriage comedy. And the blunt cosmetic truth of this marriage was that both of its participants were profoundly homely — a state that helped form the outsider’s perspective vital to Hitchcock’s movies. Despite untold makeup and appliances, though, and the studied dowdiness that Hopkins and Mirren bring to their roles, it’s impossible to witness this Alfred and Alma as the lumpen, made-foreach-other figures that any version of their story demands. There’s a condescension in both performances, an uncomfortable pity that undoes whatever pleasures might be had in a gauzy depiction of Hollywood in the

Hopkins has the lines but not the man.

tells “a universal story.” That’s not necessarily what you want from a documentary, but what’s universal here is something that works exceptionally well. As Goldfinger put it in the same interview: “Is the history of your family important? How does it reflect your identity? What do you know about your parents? Does your life need to be connected to your past?” To the extent that answers await those questions, they’re first whispered to Goldfinger in his film’s title property, the jam-packed Tel Aviv apartment of his late grandmother. She and her husband were German Jews who left Berlin in the 1930s — but, the movie carefully reveals, didn’t let go of every connection to that

time and place. (They also didn’t let go of much property; Goldfinger set out to document no more than an arduous dig through a lifetime’s worth of books and antiques and garments, most now sadly disposable.) First a letter and then a coin, each showing both a Star of David and a Nazi swastika, spark a series of questions that the usual Googling and weekend genealogy can’t satisfy. Saying much more would rob The Flat of its initial power to jar. But after the movie, knowing as much as Goldfinger does about his family, you may want to watch it again. — S.W.

moment before Camelot. (Jeff Cronenweth’s photography is lustrous.) The opening-credits sequence (which, with Danny Elfman’s sticky-fingered score, pays homage to Hitchcock’s TV show) says McLaughlin’s screenplay is based on Stephen Rebello’s book Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho. Other than limiting the story’s chronology to that 1960 movie’s difficult gestation, though, the connection between this and nonWikipedia Hitchcock scholarship is tissue-thin. For instance: At the premiere of North by Northwest, amid popping flashbulbs, an off-screen voice asks Hitchcock why he doesn’t just quit while he’s ahead — a question that sends him into a funk. The only way back to business turns out to be via Robert Bloch’s fictionalization of the Ed Gein murders, which Hitchcock illustrates by casting Michael Wincott as the Wisconsin serial killer and putting him and Hopkins in short, ugly fantasy sequences together. The suggestion is that the director’s success owes something to an innate understanding of his own dark impulses. But Hitchcock’s gift was in his absolute grasp of the audience’s dark impulses. The difference isn’t subtle, but it proves too much for Gervasi. Q

@

pitch.com INVITE YOU TO A SPECIAL ADVANCE SCREENING!

OUT THIS WEEK THE FLAT

A

rnon Goldfi nger’s documentary starts slowly, with the feeling of a home movie fashioned into something for PBS. The photography is matter-of-fact and sometimes harsh, like something strung together from a couple of cellphones. But these seeming early deficits allow The Flat to catch you off-guard with what turns out to be a rich, complex and unlikely story. Goldfinger’s movie won an award at the Tribeca Film Festival this past spring (for Tali Helter-Shenkar’s editing), and the director told Tribeca’s website in October that The Flat

E-mail scott.wilson@pitch.com

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Louie’s Wine Dive • 7100 Wornall, 816-569-5097 • Hours: 4–10 p.m. Monday, 11 a.m.–10 p.m. Tuesday–Thursday, 11 a.m.–11 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 9 a.m.–3 p.m. Sunday brunch, 3–9 p.m. Sunday dinner • Price: $$–$$$

O

n a recent evening at Louie’s Wine Dive, one of my dining companions complained to me that the noise level in the room was “obnoxious.” At least I think that’s the word she used. I had to read her lips. This new, 84-seat restaurant can indeed turn a dinner conversation into a silent movie without the title cards. But that’s the price one pays for eating in the most popular new bistro in the city. Since it opened October 31, Louie’s has drawn sufficient crowds to ensure that there’s often a onehour wait for a table, even on a Tuesday or a Wednesday night. Really? For a place that calls itself a dive? Now, a dive — in my book, anyway — is a somewhat sordid place, a refuge where you can fall off a bar stool or vomit on the f loor E MOR with impunity, then get up and order another cocktail without losing a T A E IN ONL .COM shred of dignity. Louie’s PITCH is quite a bit more genteel than that. It is, well, a wine bar. (And, no, there’s no Louie. The name is just a whimsical touch.) And wine bars do have their charms. At this one, for instance, the service is excellent, some of the food is impressive, and diners don’t have to be oenophiles to appreciate the wine list’s 100 or so vintages. Better yet, any bottle in the house can be opened, as long as you commit to buying two glasses. (The rest of the bottle is then featured as a by-the-glass special for anyone else in the restaurant.) What’s the price for those glasses? “We divide the cost of the bottle by a fourth and add a dollar,” says co-owner Aaron Shields. That’s not bad, even if the markup here is generally greater than you’ll find in an actual dive. “Some of them are marked up really high,” says Cellar Rat’s Ryan Sciara. I showed him the wine list from Louie’s, and he didn’t seem impressed: “There are a couple of surprising choices on the list, but it’s mostly familiar wines.” “It’s an accessible list,” Shields says. “It wasn’t designed for wine nerds, although we’ll be adding nerdier wines later on.” People seem to like that accessibility. Louie’s already has become a neighborhood hangout for a Waldo and Armour Hills crowd looking for a new alternative to the Well or Remedy or the Gaf, the Irish pub just up the block. And it’s a relief, at least for the neighboring businesses, that there’s finally a halfway decent restaurant in this location, which has been the setting for several third-rate failures (such as Jenny’s and the unlamented Cantina del Ray). “Customers keep thanking me for opening in this spot,” co-owner Cory Gonzalez tells me. “I guess there was a lot of turnover here in the past.”

CAFÉ

ANGELA C. BOND

The cuisine at Louie’s is worth diving into.

My tablemates and I started that meal with Shields and Gonzalez seem to know how this place’s spin on fritto misto (one of the to scout a location. They opened their first few vegetarian-friendly choices here), a mess Louie’s Wine Dive in Des Moines, and they plan to put a third in Omaha. The Kansas City of fried Broccolini, onion rings and squash straws dusted with rice flour and then lightly menu is similar to the one in Des Moines, but flash-fried. It came with a terrific, punchy Shields and Gonzalez have hired chef Jaci habanero aïoli and a mediocre marinara that Shelby to run the kitchen here. Shelby’s dinner menu is ambitious was, on this night, cold. The deviled-egg appetizer was fine, if for a dive. A real dive, if it serves anything to eat at all, might offer burgers and heavy on the mustard. Each tidy little egg was sprinkled with a few Misf r ies. The c r ispy, t h i nsouri River black sturgeon cut fries at Louie’s can be Louie’s Wine Dive eggs. They call it caviar. I orde re d p out i ne - st yle, Fritto misto ...........................$8 call it a modest Mighty Mo covered w ith a seafood Deviled eggs ......................... $7 garnish. gravy and chunks of lobster. Corned-pork Reuben ..........$11 I preferred the lavosh The “daily burger,” featurPorchetta .............................$16 f latbreads, especially the ing meats ground in Alex Baked Louie .........................$15 Pear tart ................................ $5 combination of pulled pork, Pope’s Local Pig butcher roasted butternut squash, shop, isn’t your ordinary ribbons of balsamic onion, chuck. On one of my visits, chopped apples and a squiggle of lime sour the beef was mixed with pork belly. It’s a $13 burger, though, so you expect it to be a cream. That one was so good that the version with roasted tomato and fresh mozzarella little classy. My server one night sized up my own seemed too tame. Shelby needs to work a little harder on the classiness level and directed me away from the burger, advising me instead to order the porchetta, a Berkshire pork shoulder stuffed with La Quercia prosciutto in a very good corned-pork Reuben. I was grateful — it was fontina-cheese cream sauce. The one I tasted an outrageously good sandwich, with housecured Berkshire pork jumbled with crunchy suffered from too much gristle. Attention is also needed on the “Baked Louie” pasta, pickled red cabbage under a slice of Swiss cheese. The dressing was house-made, and which the menu claims is served in a “housemade Alfredo sauce.” If there was a single the bread was grilled Farm to Market.

drop of cream in the plate I was served, I’ll eat my hat. I’d rather eat the first-rate macaroni and cheese. The version I tasted was made with portobello mushrooms (sautéed in truffle oil) and some bits of prosciutto. That dish really was blanketed in a supple, cheesy cream sauce, and it was excellent. (It and the wildmushroom ragu are made with vegetable stock, so vegetarians can order them without the meat and feel safe.) By the time our server was ready to recite the selection of desserts, Louie’s had become deafening. She had an old-fashioned visual aid, though: a tray of sweets (some of them kind of sorry-looking) presented for consideration. I tried a poached-pear tart, made with feather-light phyllo pastry and topped with a tiny scoop of honey frozen custard. It was delicious — and much better than the little ramekin delivered to us that allegedly contained “pumpkin mousse.” I would have loved to taste pumpkin mousse, but this dish had the dense consistency of traditional pumpkin pie. It needed a serious whipping. Of course, I could have shouted, “Whip it good!” and no one would have noticed. “We’re discussing ways to deal with that,” Gonzalez says about the undeniable din at Louie’s. “There are a lot of hard surfaces in this room.” But the joint isn’t a whine dive, and if the acoustics here are unforgiving, I’m not. Louie’s is congenial as hell, and no other restaurant in this space has come close to giving off this kind of vitality. In a market where diners can be pretty fickle, I’m rooting for Louie’s to sustain its impressive early popularity. That might keep this little wine boîte noisy, but that’s OK. I’ve learned to read lips.

Have a suggestion for a restaurant The Pitch should review? E-mail charles.ferruzza@pitch.com

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THE PITCH

DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

ansas City is one big barbecue biosphere. The scent of wood smoking permeates our neighborhoods, barbecue sauce runs as thick as Brush Creek, and Kansas Citians can’t hold a gathering without putting fire to meat. This summer, fi lmmakers Martin Diggs and Kevin Fossland, the pair behind Burnt Ends Media, set out to understand why that’s the case, capturing footage at barbecue competitions and raising money for their untitled documentary, which they hope to release next fall. Diggs sat down with The Pitch to explain how the project came about and what they’re shooting now. The Pitch: What was the impetus for making a documentary about Kansas City barbecue? Diggs: Kevin and I have known each other for years. We were at KU at the exact same time. We always joke that we probably spilled beer on each other. I moved back here five or six years ago and started working at the Melting Pot. Kevin was a bartender there, and we became fast friends. We worked together at Trezo Mare before moving on to JJ’s Restaurant. Back in May, Kevin was talking about an idea for an app — a menu-based, locationbased app for restaurants. He decided to narrow his focus and picked barbecue. While doing research, he realized that nobody had done a documentary just on Kansas City barbecue. My background was in film. [Diggs got his start working on Robert Altman’s Kansas City after graduating from the University of Kansas with a degree in film.] And we just started going from there. Barbecue is an all-encompassing term. What’s your focus with this film? It’s the culture of barbecue in Kansas City that we want to focus on. We [including producer and KC native Julie Clark] broke it down into five elements: history, the business side of restaurants, food trucks and caterers, the methodology (barbecuing versus grilling, how wood affects meat, particular styles), competitions and rituals (tailgating, family celebrations, holidays, backyard barbecues).

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What have you been filming? When we first started talking [in May], the competitions were in full swing, and one of the guys we work with, Matt Nichols [JJ’s general manager], is a competition barbecuer. We started going to competitions, and the first one we really shot was the Lenexa state championship. We look at it seasonally. We’re trying to get in the rhythm of what happens in Kansas City in a calendar year. The football season is going on now and that will go into winter. I’ve been a barbecuer the last 10 years. I realize that I had the bug because I was willing to cook outside in winter. We’re also looking at spending time at a restaurant: what’s it like, a day in the life for the cooks and their families. With tailgating, we need to take a new approach. And one thing that’s never been covered is the prep, the back story of that day the week before. People pick themes — it’s Mexican for the San Diego game or chicken wings for the Falcons. We sat down with a couple that has a famous grill with a Chiefs helmet on it. They live an hour and a half from the stadium, and what they go through to cook on game day is incredible. In springtime, that’s when competition season starts up. The thing is, we keep finding barbecue everywhere. Think about how many ribs they’re cooking at Kauffman Stadium or how Sporting KC is becoming a huge tailgating spot. They’re singing a barbecue song during the game. Is Kansas City really that different from other barbecue meccas? What we do in our day-to-day lives, I can’t imagine there is any other place in the world that is as dedicated to barbecue like Kansas City. We’re going to ruffle feathers with Texans, Memphis and the Carolinas. This is our dissertation as to why Kansas City is the barbecue capital of the world. If you can prove it otherwise, you’re more than welcome. But we’re putting it out there. Who is your audience?

This is for Kansas City, but our focus is to show everyone the rest of the story. We want this to be on the festival circuit. We think it’s important to preserve the history, but it’s also a selling point to come to the Midwest. People know the name KC Masterpiece, but they don’t know about the guys that make the rubs, the sauce makers, the caterers. Was there a moment you shot that you know will be in the final cut? We shot the American Royal this fall. We were running different crews. A team let me shoot them pulling their chicken from the oven. They were moving it to the trailer and then selecting the pieces for their turn-in box [for judging]. The banter between the two of them, the nervous energy, was incredible. They were a married couple. It was one of those little married moments when they’re snapping back and forth. They’re whispering like they’re in church or at a golf tournament like, if they speak too loudly, something is going to happen to the chicken and it’s not going to work out. Watching how meticulous they were was just priceless. What are the stories you hope to uncover in the coming months? There are so many stories. In the early 1900s, it was estimated there were 1,000 stands for barbecue in Kansas City. We want to find somebody with a grandfather who ran a stand, who has pictures or stories. We all know that barbecue is big in Kansas City, but the extent of how big constantly blows us away. It really is part of Kansas City, more so than anyone can imagine. There’s also an older crowd. There’s no gentle way to put it. And we have to get these people on film because their story is so important. I was talking to Paul Kirk [Kansas City Barbeque Society founding member] at the American Royal, and I asked if we could sit down and have a conversation. Kirk looked at me and said, “Well, hurry up. I’m not getting any younger.”



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THE PITCH

DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

MUSIC

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The Shy Boys quietly revive the gentle pop of the early 1960s.

BY

D AV ID HUDN A L L

O

n Thanksgiving night a couple of weeks back, the three members of the Shy Boys invited friends and fans — two circles with a lot of overlap at this early stage in the band’s existence — to celebrate at the house where they live together on the western edge of the West Plaza neighborhood. Furniture had been relocated to the attached garage, where they practice. Around 11 p.m., after a set of grimy alt-rock from friends the Claque, an earnest crowd huddled together in the low-arching living room to watch the Shy Boys do their thing. This kind of DIY-show ethic is common to punk culture and sometimes to hippie folk gatherings. But the Shy Boys are neither. They play soft, harmony-laden pop songs with modern underpinnings — a little bit of the Association, a little bit of Real Estate. Still, the intimacy of a house show is well-suited to the tenderness of their music, and they prefer their livingroom stage to noisy clubs. Unfortunately, some new fans — an unwelcome contingent — of their private venue have recently emerged. “We’re currently battling a pretty serious rodent problem,” singer, songwriter and guitarist Collin Rausch says. It’s a week after the Thanksgiving show, but the drums, mics and amps are in the exact same place as they were six days ago. The couch has been moved back inside, but it’s positioned near the kitchen, at an angle that would give a feng shui consultant a coronary. You get the feeling that somebody woke up one morning and dragged the couch just far enough so that they could see the TV. Collin points at the dishwasher. “The mice come in underneath there,” he says. “They’ve basically invaded both the kitchen and the garage. Also, some nights I hear possums climbing up the vines outside my window.” “Smokyman [a nickname for their fourth roommate, who is not in the band] has killed two of the mice so far,” Konnor Ervin says. “One got stuck, and he stabbed it with an ink pen. The other one he crushed with a rock.” There has also been a rat sighting. “The rat’s dead,” Collin says. “We poisoned him.” How big was the rat? “Pretty big,” says Kyle Rausch, who alternates bass and drums with Ervin. “It was not small.” “It was a rat,” Ervin says, nodding. “It was a rat, with a big, long tail.” The Shy Boys have been living together — and, evidently, with various rodents — for about a year, roughly as long as they’ve been a band. But Collin and Kyle have lived and played together for far longer. The brothers grew up in Blue Springs and as teenagers and into their early 20s were members of the TD Pack Band, the long-running Kansas City Chiefs pep band that performed at home games until 2008. Their father, Kent Rausch, was an arranger and drummer for the band for 23 seasons. From 2007 to 2009, Kyle and Collin played around town in the Abracadabras, a glam-rock group. “We were into T. Rex and Bowie and that kind of thing, wearing makeup and glitter and shit,” Collin says, sighing.

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When the Abracadabras disbanded, Collin Quiet as mice: the Shy Boys and Kyle started working on an EP together. “We got three songs into it and listened to it close their eyes, as though in pain, when they harmonize — and ramshackle. That looseness and were just appalled and shelved it,” Collin is in part owing to the creative liberty that says. “And I went through sort of an existential Ervin and Kyle enjoy by playing different roles music crisis for a while. But finally I started in the Shy Boys from those in the ACBs. writing pop songs again.” Ervin, who occasionally smashes and A couple of years ago, Kyle took over as bashes the songs into wild, unexpected places, drummer for the ACBs, the local pop-rock group led by Ervin. The Rausches and Ervin seems to be having an especially good time behind the kit. found that they shared a love of oldies music “I’ve played drums before,” Ervin says. “But and had the idea to start an oldies cover band. in a lot of ways, I never really figured out the “Oldies are kind of what Kyle and I were raised drums, never got better. I’m starting to get on,” Collin says. “It’s what we’d sing in the car with my mom and dad. We’d sing harmonies a little better now, just because I play more. to songs on Oldies 95. It just became part of And it’s nice to have Kyle around to tell me if I’m doing a whack fill or something cheesy.” our vocabulary. “In some ways,” Ervin continues, “it’s “I was always a huge ACBs guy,” Collin conweird to be in the ACBs, where we have these tinues, “and even back in the Abracadabras other good songwriters in days, I felt like he [Ervin] the band, but we’re always understood where we were The Shy Boys, playing my songs. It feels like coming from in terms of pop with Ghosty and I’m making it about myself and harmony and catchy-fun the Conquerors or something, like it’s me stuff. So if there was one guy Saturday, December 8, me me all the time. With Shy in town who was going to get at RecordBar Boys, I can relax a little more it and be able to run with us, because it’s less about me.” it seemed like it was Koney.” This fall, the Shy Boys cut about 10 songs When they moved into their current place with Mike Nolte at Westend Studio. But things on Bell Street, the trio started practicing covers don’t exactly move at the speed of light over together — songs like “Cathy’s Clown,” “Never at the Bell house. “We’ll release it somehow, I My Love” and “At the Hop.” That bled into think, probably in early spring,” Collin says. Collin playing Ervin new demos that he’d been They’ve also been playing around a little working on, and soon the three were jamming more lately. This Saturday, the Shy Boys are at on Collin’s songs. RecordBar, with Ghosty and the Conquerors — “We had been in different types of bands a positively extroverted gig. Then it’s back to with different styles and sounds, but this felt their interior lives and perhaps a holiday show more natural,” Kyle says. “It was just like, ‘Fuck at their place later in the month. it, we’re going to write these little pop songs “These house shows we do over here, it’s and play ’em because that’s what we like and just more communal,” Kyle says. “Everybody’s that’s what we’re good at.’ ” close. Everybody’s right there with you.” Alas, the oldies cover band never materialCan this sense of community expand to ized. Instead, the Shy Boys were born. (They include the wild rodents roaming their home? originally called themselves the I’ms, but “I actually don’t mind the mice,” Ervin says. changed their name after Ervin warned them of the headaches of being in a band whose “I saw one in the cupboard the other day, and we just kind of stared at each other for a while. name contains a confusing apostrophe.) Rather than covering 1960s classics, the Shy Boys built Then I moved, and he raced down into that hole under the dishwasher and disappeared.” an aesthetic inspired by them, with high harmonies, gentle jangles and innocent lyrics. Live, they are at once precise — they often E-mail david.hudnall@pitch.com pitch.com

MONTH


pitch.com

DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

THE PITCH

25


MUSIC

RADAR

M U S I C F O R E CAST

BY

Other shows worth seeing this week.

D AV ID HUDN A L L

T H U R S D AY, D E C E M B E R 6 Never Shout Never, William Beckett, Anarbor, Me Like Bees: 6 p.m. The Granada, 1020 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-842-1390. Kevin Pollak: Improv Comedy Club and Dinner Theater, 7260 N.W. 87th St., 816-759-5233.

F R I D AY, D E C E M B E R 7 Butch Clancy, Marquese Scott, Johnny Hammerstix, Elephantz, Gent: The Beaumont Club, 4050 Pennsylvania, 816-561-2560. Steve Forbert: 8 p.m. Knuckleheads Saloon, 2715 Rochester, 816-483-1456. Liverpool: 9:30 p.m. Knuckleheads Saloon, 2715 Rochester, 816-483-1456. Kevin Pollak: Improv Comedy Club and Dinner Theater, 7260 N.W. 87th St., 816-759-5233. Project Trio: Yardley Hall at JCCC, 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park, 913-469-8500. Tech N9ne presents the Gift of Rap: Independence Events Center, 19100 E. Valley View Pkwy., Independence.

S AT U R D AY, D E C E M B E R 8

From left: the Punch Brothers and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy

Having names vaguely embarrassing to say out loud was an unspoken rule among groups that participated in the brief swing-music revival of the mid-1990s. Hence, the Cherry Poppin’ Daddies, the Squirrel Nut Zippers and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. BBVD is still touring, and the brassy boys in the band are still wearing fancy pinstriped suits and various other accessories popular in the 1940s and ’50s. Has it really been almost 20 years since BBVD’s breakthrough appearance in the cult-classic film Swingers? Oh, let’s just not think about it. Thursday, December 6, at VooDoo Lounge (Harrah’s Casino, 1 Riverboat Drive, North Kansas City, 816-472-7777)

We Are Voices, with Noise FM

This occasion celebrates the release of Tread Lightly, the second album from local group We Are Voices. The record merges the stadiumsized postrock of groups such as Explosions in the Sky with more Midwestern emo sensibilities. Formerly of Lawrence and now in Chicago, Noise FM is back in the area for its annual Noise for Toys benefit at the Replay Lounge on Saturday night and to open this show. Friday, December 7, at the Riot Room (4048 Broadway, 816-442-8179)

Mr. Marco’s V7

The bizarre musical stew of Mr. Marco’s V7 — which includes dashes of jazz, world music, funk and metal — has been cooking nigh onto two decades now. The group (composed of scene vets who play in other KC acts) released Sparkin Your Mama last year. Recommended if you like theremins, accordions, Middle Eastern vibes, and weirdo time signatures. Saturday, Dec ember 8, at the Brick (1727 McGee, 816-421-1634)

S U N D AY, D E C E M B E R 9

Punch Brothers Hooligan Holiday

This Sunday-night shindig includes a fashion show, courtesy of the Bunker, and somebody called DJ Liondub. But probably the biggest draw is the Amy Winehouse tribute, which features some local leading ladies (Lauren Krum from the Grisly Hand and Julia Haile from the Good Foot) backed by a band of about 10 local players. Think of it as sort of like a prom for people who go out in Westport on weeknights. Sunday, December 9, at the Beaumont Club (4050 Pennsylvania, 816-561-2560)

High on Fire

If the group isn’t there already, High on Fire is at least on the verge of legend status in the world of stoner metal. The Oakland band’s

F O R E C A S T

26

latest, De Vermis Mysteriis, is a sort of concept album — the title is an H.P. Lovecraft reference (or something — it’s hard to parse the lyrics over the roaring din of monster riffs). Basically, it delivers more or less the type of sludgy, headbanging goodness that fans have come to expect. Monday, December 10, at the Riot Room (4048 Broadway, 816-442-8179)

Earlier this fall, Chris Thile won a coveted MacArthur Genius Grant — $500,000 over the next five years, no strings attached. Why? Because Thile, who cut his teeth in the bluegrass group Nickel Creek, is arguably the best mandolin player on planet Earth. He now leads the Punch Brothers, a virtuosic folkbluegrass outfit that employs the primary instruments of the genre — acoustic guitar, banjo, fiddle, upright bass and mandolin — but draws outside the lines in terms of melody and song structure. (Its latest, Who’s Feeling Young Now?, includes an unironic and pretty great cover of Radiohead’s “Kid A.”) If you’re into bluegrass music, there’s really no excuse not to be listening to these guys. Tuesday, December 11, at the Beaumont Club (4050 Pennsylvania, 816-561-2560)

........................................................ Hooliganism

.........................................The Dream of the ’90s

.......................................................Kind of Scary

.....................................................Weed-Friendly

................................................. Dapper Dressers

.........................................Record-Release Party

............................................................. Stomping

................So Money and You Don't Even Know It

............................................... Possible Beehives

.............................................................. Plucking

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M O N D AY, D E C E M B E R 10 Math the Band, Black Tie Laceration, Agent x-12: The Bottleneck, 737 New Hampshire, Lawrence, 785-841-5483.

T U E S D AY, D E C E M B E R 11 Acoustic Christmas, with Big & Rich, Kix Brooks, Randy Houser, Tyler Farr: The Midland, 1228 Main, 816-283-9900. Sam Stryke Holiday Concert: Regnier Hall, 12600 Quivira (KU Edwards Campus), Overland Park, 913-897-8400. West End Motel, Ricer, the Blue Boot Heelers: 8 p.m. The Riot Room, 4048 Broadway, 816-442-8179.

W E D N E S D AY, D E C E M B E R 12

FUTURECAST

K E Y

.................................................. Locally Sourced

DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

Allegro Choirs of Kansas City Winter Blessings Concert: Visitation Church, 5141 Main, 816-753-7422. Lessons and Carols with Octarium: 3 p.m. St. Mark Hope and Peace Lutheran Church, 3800 Troost, 816-419-5575. Trans-Siberian Orchestra: the Lost Christmas Eve: Sprint Center, 1407 Grand, 816-283-7300.

Brian Setzer Orchestra’s Christmas Rocks: Uptown Theater, 3700 Broadway, 816-753-8665.

..................................................Pick of the Week

THE PITCH

Beatles Baroque Holiday Concert Celebrating John Lennon and George Harrison: All Saints Episcopal Church, 9201 Wornall, 816-363-2450. It, Blackfoot Gypsies, Up the Academy: The Bottleneck, 737 New Hampshire, Lawrence, 785-841-5483. Jingle Jam, with Cody Simpson, Boys Like Girls, and more: The Midland, 1228 Main, 816-283-9900. KPR Big Band Christmas: Liberty Hall, 644 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-749-1972. Lamb of God, In Flames, Hellyeah, Sylosis: Uptown Theater, 3700 Broadway, 816-753-8665. Park University International Center for Music Student Showcase: Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel, 8700 N.W. River Park Drive, Parkville. Kevin Pollak: Improv Comedy Club and Dinner Theater, 7260 N.W. 87th St., 816-759-5233. Winter Wonderland with the Kansas City Women’s Chorus: Folly Theater, 300 W. 12th St., 816-474-4444.

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FRIDAY 14 The Night the Buzz Stole X-Mas, with Flogging Molly, the Dirty Heads, and more: The Midland Katt Williams: Sprint Center SATURDAY 15 The Night the Buzz Stole X-Mas: The Midland Carrie Underwood: Sprint Center

M O N T H X X–X X , 2 0 0 X

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DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

THE PITCH

27


MON: RUR AL GRIT 6 PM, KARA FRI 12/07 OKE 10PM RUDDY SW A IN , THE JOHN JACK GREL SON F LE & SAT 12/08 THE SAWYERS AMILY, TUE 12/11 THE ANTS, MR MAR CO THU 12/1 ACOUSTIC REGGAE S V7 3 MOLLY X -MAS GENE FRI 12/14 TRUCKSTO , AMY FARRAND P HO SAT 12/15 DANNY MCGAW NEYMOON, THE NATU COLIN EL RAL, DAVID BUR MORE CHFIELD,

MUSIC | STREETSIDE

LOST AND FOUND

Backing into a zombie pub crawl; celebrating a decade of Found magazine

BY

D AV ID HUDN A L L

975 Kansas Ave Kansas City, KS 913.233.0201

shelf $5 top liquor ALL

THE

TIME

Check out miniBar!

WED. DEC. 5

7PM BOB WALKENHORST & FRIENDS 10PM TILL WILLIS & THE ERRATIC MEN/ DALE MAXFIELD/SHELLY MILLER THURS. DEC. 6

7PM TRIVIA CLASH 10PM LITTLE ROSCO/APPROPRIATE GRAMMAR/ CHANCE THE ARM/CAPT. OF MODERATION

FRI. DEC. 7 6PM DANNY COX & FRIENDS 10PM JANET THE PLAENT/ JORGE ARANA TRIO/A LIGHT WITHIN SAT. DEC. 8

7PM SCHWERVON/HEAVY FIGGS 10PM GHOSTY/SHY BOYS/ THE CONQUERORS SUN. DEC. 9

CLOSED FOR A HOLIDAY OF HOOLIGANS MON. DEC. 10

7PM SONIC SPECTRUM MUSIC TRIVIA 10PM MARIA THE MEXICAN/CHRIS FOSTER TUES. DEC. 11 7PM MISS MAJOR & HER MINOR MOOD SWINGS 10PM KARAOKE WITH BABY BRIE WED. DEC. 12 7PM BOB WALKENHORST & FRIENDS 10PM CHARITY ART BATTLE TYSON SCHROEDER VS. STEVEN TULIPANA see www.therecordbar.com for our weekly events

1020 westport rd. kcmo 64111*816-‐753-‐5207

28

THE PITCH

DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

A

pub crawl was wrapping up at Martini Corner when I arrived in the area early last Saturday evening. I had come simply to eat a sandwich at Tower Tavern, a sports bar over there that employs a person with whom I share DNA. A meal in peace is all I ask! Instead, I found myself surrounded by a bunch of drunk zombies. I mean that literally. The occasion, as I came to understand it, was called the End of the World Pub Crawl. Participants dressed either as zombies or survivors, and hopped around the five bars in the district between the hours of 1 and 6 p.m. Crawlers were also required to carry “life fl ags” on their persons — kind of like fl ag football — and had to evade the roving group of very scarylooking zombies out on 31st Street whose goal it was to steal their life flags. Hold on, I am almost done. Then if you made it to all five bars with your life flags, you won a prize, or something. The prize did not seem to be the primary objective. Basically, this was an event for people who are into zombies and The Walking Dead and a bunch of other shit that I am not into. Wear scary makeup, take 12 Goldschläger shots, try to hook up — that seemed to be the long and short of it. The tail end of a pub crawl is a pretty dark scene, and Tower looked as though a hurricane had just blown through it. The fi rst thing I saw was a woman standing up at a high table scarfi ng down a stromboli with the deprived ferocity of a homeless man. As I was eating my chicken pesto sandwich in a probably-not-dissimilar manner, another woman with hideous white paint on her face came and sat down next to me. She knocked my shoulder with her purse as she hung it on her stool. Then she widened her legs and knocked me with her left leg and just left it there, kinda scraping up against my knee. These were not flirtatious acts. She just was so inebriated that her various senses — the sense of touch, for example — were not registering inside her brain. Before long, her friend approached, and they started having a dramatic

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conversation. Then I accidentally made eye contact with the friend. “Can I ask you a question?” she said. Oh, God. “If your friend jumped out a window, would you jump out one, too?” “Probably,” I said. The loose-legged woman gave me a highfive. “Right on,” she said. “I don’t like you,” her friend said. “I don’t like the way you think, and I don’t like the way your brain works.” “People have told me that before,” I said. Then Alabama won — what a game! — and I cruised over to RecordBar for Found magazine’s 10th-anniversary celebration. I wrote about Found creator Davy Rothbart in last week’s issue, but if you’re unfamiliar, Found is an irregularly published national zine that gathers strangers’ discarded lists, letters, photographs and other ephemera, and assembles from them a sort of collective poetry. The “fi nds,” as they are called, are sometimes poignant and usually funny. (I laugh every time I look at the cover of the recently published Issue 8, which is anchored by a found press photo of a young, white, rotund, bandanna-wearing rapper who goes by the name “Biggz.”) Rothbart, who is 37, took the stage in his usual attire: bright pants, a basketball jersey, and a houndstooth cap. It’s not a style I can make work, but I respect that he seems to have settled on a look in junior high and stuck with it ever since. Three rows of chairs were set up in front of the stage, which I don’t think I’d ever seen RecordBar do before — a nice touch. “Some good-looking women here,” a friend said, and there were. There also seemed to be more women than men present — another phenomenon I don’t believe I’ve ever observed at RecordBar. For these Found tours — the current one covers 75 cities in 99 days — Rothbart is doing readings from his new book of essays, My Heart Is an Idiot. It’s one of my favorite books of the year, and he read two of the

Rothbart’s admirers include Stephanie (left) and at least one male Chez Charlie patron. shorter essays from the collection: “Nibble, Lick, Suck, and Feast” and “Southwest.” He’s also touring with his brother, Peter, who is a musician. Halfway through the show, Peter came up and performed some solo acoustic songs inspired by finds. It was a mostly comic performance, though it had a literary quality to it, somewhere between Sufjan Stevens and an early 1990s Adam Sandler song. One contained the lyric, I know I have been redeemed/ To build the baddest-ass Nissans the Pacific Northwest has ever seen, which struck me as very Mountain Goats. Later, the brothers shared the stage to perform “The Booty Don’t Stop,” a song from a blank cassette tape (titled “Booty Tape”) that a Found reader picked up off the ground somewhere in Michigan. A few phrases stick out: dick-donkulous and taste that booty flavor. It’s actually not a bad song. Before the show, tiny pieces of paper were distributed to audience members, on which we were asked to write down a question that we might like to ask a stranger. At the end of the show, Rothbart asked for a crowd volunteer. A young woman named Stephanie went onstage, and Rothbart proceeded to ask her the collected questions. Ordinary everyday type of stuff, like “Who are you, really?” and “Would you rather fight 10 duck-sized horses or one horse-sized duck?” Rothbart has amassed a power trove of fi nds over the last decade, and throughout the evening, he picked through a cluttered stack of old papers and presented us with the gems. It was a little bit like a legendary band burning through its greatest hits. One was a shopping list that goes, “Gun, gun, ski mask, Nerds.” He closed strong, with my personal favorite, a note that reads, “Dad, come get me at the coffee shop when you are done taking a crap.”

E-mail david.hudnall@pitch.com pitch.com

MONTH


pitch.com

DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

THE PITCH

29


Happy Hour Specials til 6pm!

NIGHTLIFE

Bar

Send submissions to Clubs Editor Abbie Stutzer by e-mail (abbie.stutzer@pitch.com), fax (816-756-0502) or phone (816-218-6926). Continuing items must be resubmitted monthly.

RecordBar: 1020 Westport Rd., 816-753-5207. Janet the Planet, Jorge Arana Trio, A Light Within, Mat Shoare, 9 p.m.

Knockout Pool Tournament [on Tuesdays] Karaoke Dance Party [Friday & Saturday Night] Shuffleboard! Daily Food Specials [Sun & Wed Steak Night]

T H U R S D AY 6

The Hideout: 6948 N. Oak Tfwy., 816-468-0550. Brother Bagman. Icons Restaurant & Lounge: 1108 Grand, 816-472-4266. The Boss Kingz, 8 p.m. Jazz: 1823 W. 39th St., 816-531-5556. Cold Sweat. The Levee: 16 W. 43rd St., 816-561-2821. The Good Foot.

“Where somebody might know your name”

MON-FRI: 2:00PM - 1:30AM | SAT-SUN: NOON - 1:30AM /garrettsbar

6505 Nieman Rd in Shawnee 913.608.5995

ROCK/POP/INDIE Jackpot Music Hall: 943 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-8321085. The Strive, Grenadina, the Blos, and more, 9 p.m.

BLUES/FUNK/SOUL B.B.’s Lawnside BBQ: 1205 E. 85th St., 816-822-7427. Samantha Fish. Gran-Daddy’s Q: 1447 W. 23rd St., Lawrence, 785-830-8665. Bed Against the Wall. Quasimodo: 12056 W. 135th St., Overland Park, 913-239-9666. Kris Bruders. Trouser Mouse: 625 N.W. Mock Ave., Blue Springs, 816-2201222. Kyle Elliott.

BLUES/FUNK/SOUL

ROOTS/COUNTRY/BLUEGRASS The Brick: 1727 McGee, 816-421-1634. Ruddy Swain, Jack Grelle and the Johnson Family, the Sawyers. Quasimodo: 12056 W. 135th St., Overland Park, 913-239-9666. Tinhorn Molly, 8 p.m.

DJ Hotel: 1300 Grand, 816-226-3232. DVJs Synematix. The Quaff: 1010 Broadway, 816-471-1918. DJ E.

ROOTS/COUNTRY/BLUEGRASS We Deliver!

FRANK JAMES

SALOON

Lunch Buffet, Salad Bar Daily Food & Drink Specials Bloody Mary Bar & Breakfast Pizza Buffet Sundays 11am - 2pm .DUDRNH6XQGD\V‡+DSS\+RXU CHECK 12/7 ERNEST JAMES ZYDECO FACEBOOK FOR 12/14 river rock UPDATES

1:+Z\ (3.5 mi west of I-29)

Parkville, MO 816-505-0800

Knuckleheads Saloon: 2715 Rochester, 816-483-1456. The Hillbenders, Loaded Goat.

DJ The Bottleneck: 737 New Hampshire, Lawrence, 785-8415483. Goomba Rave, with Team Bear Club. Saints Pub + Patio: 9720 Quivira, Lenexa, 913-492-3900. DJ Brad Sager.

JAZZ Chaz on the Plaza: 325 Ward Pkwy., 816-802-2152. Denny Osburn. Jazzhaus: 926-1/2 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-749-1387. Gypsy Jazz.

COMEDY Stanford’s Comedy Club: 1867 Village West Pkwy., Kansas City, Kan., 913-400-7500. Carlos Alazraqui.

BAR GAMES/DRUNKEN DISTRACTIONS

PRE-­MIXED SYNTHETICURINE KIT

Kit Contains:

‡R]RIWKHKLJKHVWTXDOLW \ VXQWKHWLFXULQHDYDLODEOH ‡$GMXVWDEOHEHOW ‡7 ZRKHDWSDGV ‡7HPSHUDWXUHODEHO

<($5 SHELF LIFE

Bulldog: 1715 Main, 816-421-4799. Brodioke. Buzzard Beach: 4110 Pennsylvania, 816-753-4455. Trivia, Ladies’ Night, and DJ HoodNasty. Fatso’s Public House and Stage: 1016 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-865-4055. Electro Therapy Thursdays. Hamburger Mary’s: 101 Southwest Blvd., 816-842-1919. Charity Bingo with Valerie Versace, 8 p.m., $1 per game. Hurricane Allie’s Bar and Grill: 5541 Merriam Dr., Shawnee, 913-217-7665. Karaoke, 8:30 p.m. J. Murphy’s Irish Pub and Grille: 22730 Midland Dr., Shawnee, 913-825-3880. Ladies’ night. RecordBar: 1020 Westport Rd., 816-753-5207. Trivia Clash, 7 p.m. Sherlock’s Underground Coffeehouse & Pub: 858 State Route 291, Liberty, 816-429-5262. Karaoke, ladies’ night. Westport Flea Market: 817 Westport Rd., 816-931-1986. Trivia.

EASY LISTENING Jerry’s Bait Shop: 13412 Santa Fe Trail Dr., Lenexa, 913-8949676. Interactive Acoustic with Jason Kayne.

OPEN MIC/JAM SESSIONS Double T’s Roadhouse: 1421 Merriam Ln., Kansas City, Kan., 913-432-5555. Blues Jam hosted by RocknRick’s Boogie Leggin’ Blues Band, 7 p.m. The Hideout: 6948 N. Oak Tfwy., 816-468-0550. Bluegrass Jam with Loaded Goat, the John Brown Boys, Nate Gawron, Seamus McGreevy.

VA R I E T Y Coda: 1744 Broadway, 816-569-1747. Saunder Street Records Presents. The Uptown Arts Bar: 3611 Broadway. City in Motion Dance Theater Christmas Show, 7 p.m.

F R I D AY 7 ROCK/POP/INDIE

BEST Selection of Glass in KC! GGCN c…„ C iwŠ © d……„ C L i‹„ ILGM Xˆ…wzw aYce LJGGG

NGLDOIGDMHHH |wy{x……Dy…ƒEy……†{ˆ‰xˆ…wzw

30

THE PITCH

DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

Eddie’s Lounge: 3512 S.W. Market, Lee’s Summit, 816-537-4148. The Outtakes. Jackpot Music Hall: 943 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-8321085. The Hillary Watts Riot, Dreamwolf. Jazzhaus: 926-1/2 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-749-1387. Ween tribute. Jerry’s Bait Shop: 302 S.W. Main, Lee’s Summit, 816-525-1871. Rock Cove.

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ACOUSTIC The Reserve: 1111 Grand, 816-298-7700. Scott Duncan, 6 p.m. The Uptown Arts Bar: 3611 Broadway. Sarah Hess ukulele music, 9:30 p.m.

JAZZ Accurso’s: 5044 Main Street, 816-753-0810. Bob Bowman and Joe Lisinicchia. The Majestic Restaurant: 931 Broadway, 816-221-1888. Bram Wijnands, 7 p.m. MORE The Phoenix: 302 W. Eighth St., 816221-5299. JLove Band, 9 p.m. RecordBar: 1020 Westport Rd., GS IN 816-753-5207. Danny Cox and T LIS AT E N I friends, 5 p.m. ONL M Take Five Coffee + Bar: 5336 W. PITCH.CO 151st St., Overland Park, 913-9485550. The Arrika Brazil Quartet. Thai Place: 9359 W. 87th St., Overland Park, 913-649-5420. Jerry Hahn.

CLUB

AMERICANA Gran-Daddy’s Q: 1447 W. 23rd St., Lawrence, 785-830-8665. L.A. Fahey.

COMEDY Skylight Restaurant and Sports Bar: 1867 S.W. State Rt. 7, Blue Springs, 816-988-7958. Mike’s Comedy Club, 8 p.m.

BAR GAMES/DRUNKEN DISTRACTIONS Angels Rock Bar: 1323 Walnut, 816-896-3943. Santa and His Helpers. Barnyard Beer: 925 Iowa, Lawrence, 785-393-9696. Stop Day Pajama Party, with Atomic Pajama Party. The Brooksider: 6330 Brookside Plz., 816-363-4070. Team trivia. The Chesterfield: 1400 Main, 816-474-4545. Burlesque Downtown Underground, 8 & 10 p.m. Helen’s Just Another Dive: 2002 Armour Rd., North Kansas City, 816-471-4567. Trivia Riot with Roland, 7:30 p.m., $5 per person. Maker’s Mark Bourbon House & Lounge: 1333 Walnut, 816-442-8115. La Femme First Fridays. The Uptown Arts Bar: 3611 Broadway. First Friday Story Slam, 7 p.m.

M E TA L / P U N K Davey’s Uptown Ramblers Club: 3402 Main, 816-753-1909. Torn the Fuck Apart, the Lantern Hill Nightmare.

R O C K A B I L LY Coda: 1744 Broadway, 816-569-1747. First Friday with Jason Vivone and the Billybats. Trouser Mouse: 625 N.W. Mock Ave., Blue Springs, 816-2201222. The Rumblejetts.

VA R I E T Y The Bottleneck: 737 New Hampshire, Lawrence, 785-8415483. KJHK Retro Prom with Hearts of Darkness, DJ vs. Drums, Dean Monkey and the Dropouts.

S AT U R D AY 8

Eddie’s Lounge: 3512 S.W. Market, Lee’s Summit, 816-537-4148. Random Access. RecordBar: 1020 Westport Rd., 816-753-5207. Schwervon, the Heavy Figs, 6 p.m.; Ghosty, the Shy Boys, the Conquerors, 9 p.m. The Riot Room: 4048 Broadway, 816-442-8179. The Slowdown, Animal Empty, Sons of Great Dane. Sherlock’s Underground Coffeehouse & Pub: 858 State Route 291, Liberty, 816-429-5262. The Earl Baker Band.

BLUES/FUNK/SOUL B.B.’s Lawnside BBQ: 1205 E. 85th St., 816-822-7427. Mama Ray Jazz Meets Blues Jam, 2 p.m.; Four Fried Chickens and a Coke, 9 p.m. The Granada: 1020 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-842-1390. Hemi Jam, with the Band That Saved the World, Danny McGaw Band, the Recessionists. Knuckleheads Saloon: 2715 Rochester, 816-483-1456. Cassie Taylor, 6:30 p.m.; Jim Suhler and Monkey Beat, Junebug & the Porchlights, 8:30 p.m. The Levee: 16 W. 43rd St., 816-561-2821. The Groove Agency, 10 p.m. The Phoenix: 302 W. Eighth St., 816-221-5299. The Brody Buster Band, 9 p.m. Quasimodo: 12056 W. 135th St., Overland Park, 913-239-9666. Brothawood.

ROOTS/COUNTRY/BLUEGRASS Davey’s Uptown Ramblers Club: 3402 Main, 816-753-1909. Murder Ballad Ball. Gran-Daddy’s Q: 1447 W. 23rd St., Lawrence, 785-830-8665. Megan Leigh. Knuckleheads Saloon: 2715 Rochester, 816-483-1456. Jon Dee Graham, Living Room Session, 10 p.m.

DJ The Eighth Street Taproom: 801 New Hampshire, Lawrence, 785-841-6918. DJ Candlepants. Hotel: 1300 Grand, 816-226-3232. DJ Eric Coomes. The Quaff: 1010 Broadway, 816-471-1918. DJ Chris.

HIP-HOP Jerry’s Bait Shop: 13412 Santa Fe Trail Dr., Lenexa, 913-8949676. Big Face.

JAZZ Chaz on the Plaza: 325 Ward Pkwy., 816-802-2152. Angela Hagenbach Trio. Jazz: 1823 W. 39th St., 816-531-5556. Midtown Quartet. Take Five Coffee + Bar: 5336 W. 151st St., Overland Park, 913948-5550. Mike Thompson with Chuck Cowan. Tavern at Mission Farms: 10681 Mission, Leawood, 913-2136588. Candace Evans.

COMEDY Missie B’s: 805 W. 39th St., 816-561-0625. Dirty Dorothy on the main floor, 10 p.m. Stanford’s Comedy Club: 1867 Village West Pkwy., Kansas City, Kan., 913-400-7500. Carlos Alazraqui, 7:45 & 9:45 p.m.

BAR GAMES/DRUNKEN DISTRACTIONS The Red Balloon: 10325 W. 75th St., Overland Park, 913-9622330. Karaoke, 8 p.m., free. Westport Coffee House: 4010 Pennsylvania, 816-756-3222. The Kick Comedy Theatre: the Kick-Off Improv Comedy Show, 8 p.m.

M E TA L / P U N K Fitz’s Blarney Stone: 3801 Broadway, 816-753-4949. Torn the Fuck Apart, the Vile Impurity, Byleth, Lantern Hill Nightmare, Species. Jackpot Music Hall: 943 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785832-1085. The Rackatees, the Killigans, Smash the State, the Hemorrhoids.

VA R I E T Y The Hideout: 6948 N. Oak Tfwy., 816-468-0550. Third Annual COPP Benefit and clothes drive, with Coyote Bill, and more, 3 p.m. Replay Lounge: 946 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-7497676. The Noise FM’s Noise for Toys, with Sovereign States, Everyday/Everynight. The Uptown Arts Bar: 3611 Broadway. Numinous Dance Hafla with Melody Gabrielle, 7 p.m.; 1001 Arabian Nights Bellydance with A’ishah and friends, 8 p.m.

S U N D AY 9

ROCK/POP/INDIE

ROCK/POP/INDIE

Coda: 1744 Broadway, 816-569-1747. Dolls on Fire, Vehicle, Chris Hatfield Trio, 9 p.m.

Jerry’s Bait Shop: 302 S.W. Main, Lee’s Summit, 816-525-1871. Airport Novels, Sons of September, the Space Chimps.

pitch.com

MONTH


DirectTV

NFL

ket

Sunday Tic

WE SHOW ALL GAME

S

WEDNESDAYS at 9PM with D.J. Julie

DJ

Also, join us for MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL with Half-time Trivia prizes, as well as THURSDAY and SUNDAY football parties all season.

F R ID AY SATURDA&Y

NIGHTS

1010 BROADWAY Â&#x2021; 816.471.1918 /therealquaff s www.thequaffkc.com

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DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

THE PITCH

31


BLUES/FUNK/SOUL B.B.’s Lawnside BBQ: 1205 E. 85th St., 816-822-7427. Lee McBee and the Confessors. Jazz: 1823 W. 39th St., 816-531-5556. Rich Berry.

DJ

The SPOT for The

BLUES in Johnson County

Wed DEC 5

Rock Paper Scissors 7-10

Jazzhaus: 926-1/2 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-749-1387. Rage Face Productions with DJ Schwasted.

EVERY THURSDAY Live Reggae with AZ One

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 5th

The Grand Marquis - 7:30pm

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 7th

The Good Foot - 10pm

Kris Bruders 7-10

Improv Comedy Club and Dinner Theater: 7260 N.W. 87th St., 816-759-5233. Clean Comedy with Keith Bender, 2 p.m.; AJ Finney presents Sunday Story Time, 7 p.m.

Camp Harlow - 5pm Groove Agency -10pm NIGHTLY SPECIALS

BAR GAMES/DRUNKEN DISTRACTIONS

PATIO & DECK BANQUET & PRIVATE PARTY FACILITY

Fri DEC 7

TBA 5:30-7 Tinhorn Molly 8-11 Sat DEC 8

SIGHTS SOUNDS Food by: IMPERIAL FLAVOR

Brothawood 8-11

1531 Grand KCMO (816) 421-0300 czarkc.com

Tues DEC 11

Open Blues Jam with The Dave Hays Band 7-10

12056 W. 135th St. OPKS 913-239-9666 www.quasimodokc.com

FRI 12/7 1ST FRIDAY W/ JESSICA FISH (MUSIC BY BRENT WINDLER & KRIS ”THE FREIGHT TRAIN” BRUDERS 6-9PM SAT 12/8 WE LOVE TECHNO (REUNION) MON 12/10 A SILENT FILM FRI 12/14 DR. WIZARD FRI 12/14 THE PORNHUSKERS SAT 12/15 PHIL NEAL & THE WORNALLS

NEW

Food Hours Hours: TUE-SAT, 3PM-Midnight TUE Elkheart’s Downtown Outlaw Fiasco / Taco Tuesday WED Guerilla Movement Presents 2 - 4 - 1 KC’s Best Burgers THU Hot Caution Downtown / Philly Thursday

Now open 7 days a week with drink specials nightly: WEDNESDAY:

KANSAS CITY'S BIGGEST $1 HUMPDAY PARTY

THURSDAY-SATURDAY: KANSAS CITY'S ORIGINAL DUELING PIANO SHOW

SUNDAY:

SINGER-SONGWRITER SUNDAY AND KANSAS CITY'S ONLY ADULTS ONLY, DRINK ALONG SPELLING BEE FROM 8-10

Visit www.erniebiggs.com for specials and line up. Like us on Facebook for upcoming promotions and special offers. 32

2

T H E P I T C H M O N T H X X–X X , 2 0 0 X T H E P I T C H DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

The Bottleneck: 737 New Hampshire, Lawrence, 785-8415483. Smackdown Trivia and Karaoke. Clarette Club: 5400 Martway, Mission, 913-384-0986. Texas Hold ’em, 7 & 10 p.m. Frank James Saloon: 10919 N.W. Hwy. 45, Parkville, 816-5050800. Karaoke, 6-10 p.m. RecordBar: 1020 Westport Rd., 816-753-5207. Art Battle, 7 p.m. Shark Bar: 1340 Grand, 816-442-8140. Third Annual Chili Cook-Off, 3 p.m. Wallaby’s Grill and Pub: 9562 Lackman, Lenexa, 913-5419255. Texas Hold ’em, 6 & 9 p.m.

OPEN MIC/JAM SESSIONS Groove Station: 9916 Holmes, 816-942-1000. KC Blues Jam with Crosseyed Cat, 2-6 p.m. Take Five Coffee + Bar: 5336 W. 151st St., Overland Park, 913948-5550. Jazz Jam with Nick Rowland and Sansabelt.

M O N D AY 10 ROCK/POP/INDIE

UPCOMING LIVE ACTS

EVERY 1st MONDAY: Slaughterhouse Movie Night / Food & Wine Specials

135TH ST. & QUIVIRA

Chaz on the Plaza: 325 Ward Pkwy., 816-802-2152. Les Mengel Duo, 5-9 p.m. The Phoenix: 302 W. Eighth St., 816-221-5299. Second Sunday FUNdays: Gina and Chloe McFadden, 3 p.m.

COMEDY

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 8th

FOOD AND DRINK

Thurs DEC 6

JAZZ

MONDAY:

MAN CAVE MONDAYS - FOOTBALL, GAMES, & CHEAP BEER

TUESDAY:

PINT NIGHT WITH DJ HIGHNOONE AND ASHTON MARTIN pitch.com pitch.com

Jackpot Music Hall: 943 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-8321085. Til Willis, and more.

JAZZ The Majestic Restaurant: 931 Broadway, 816-221-1888. Mark Lowrey Trio, 6 p.m. The Phoenix: 302 W. Eighth St., 816-221-5299. Millie Edwards and Michael Pagan, 7 p.m.; Tom DeMaster’s Better to Be Lucky CD-release party, featuring Tom DeMasters, Jerry Hahn, Tim Whitmer, Millie Edwards, Lori Tucker, Rick Huyett, Wayne Hawkins, Ray DeMarchi, Bob Jolley, Mike Moreland, Wayne Hawkins, Allen Fishell, and Andy Hambleton, 7 p.m.

BAR GAMES/DRUNKEN DISTRACTIONS The Brick: 1727 McGee, 816-421-1634. Rural Grit Happy Hour, 6 p.m.; Karaoke with Kelly Bleachmaxx, 10:30 p.m., free. Green Room Burgers & Beer: 4010 Pennsylvania, Ste. D, 816216-7682. Geeks Who Drink Pub Quiz, 8 p.m. Jazzhaus: 926-1/2 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-749-1387. Karaoke Idol with Tanya McNaughty. RecordBar: 1020 Westport Rd., 816-753-5207. Sonic Spectrum Music Trivia, 7 p.m., $5. Westport Flea Market: 817 Westport Rd., 816-931-1986. KC Mutual UFO Network, 6:30 p.m., free, low-cost donation; Texas Hold ’em, 8 p.m.

M E TA L / P U N K Davey’s Uptown Ramblers Club: 3402 Main, 816-753-1909. Damned By the Pope, 10 p.m.

T U E S D AY 11 ROCK/POP/INDIE Jerry’s Bait Shop: 302 S.W. Main, Lee’s Summit, 816-525-1871. Clint Martinez.

BLUES/FUNK/SOUL B.B.’s Lawnside BBQ: 1205 E. 85th St., 816-822-7427. Trampled Under Foot. Jazz: 1823 W. 39th St., 816-531-5556. Mark Montgomery. Slow Ride Roadhouse: 1350 N. Third St., Lawrence, 785-7492727. Lonnie Ray Blues Band.

DJ Coda: 1744 Broadway, 816-569-1747. DJ Whatshisname, serviceindustry night, 9 p.m.

JAZZ Chaz on the Plaza: 325 Ward Pkwy., 816-802-2152. Will Mathews and Dwayne Mitchell. Finnigan’s Hall: 503 E. 18th Ave., North Kansas City, 816-2213466. Abel Ramirez Big Band, 6 p.m. The Majestic Restaurant: 931 Broadway, 816-221-1888. Hermon Mehari Trio.

BAR GAMES/DRUNKEN DISTRACTIONS The Bottleneck: 737 New Hampshire, Lawrence, 785-8415483. Gak Attack. Dukes: 1501 Grand, 816-527-0122. Beer pong tournaments, 9 p.m. The Hideout: 6948 N. Oak Tfwy., 816-468-0550. Tele-Tuesday hosted by Outlaw Jim and the Whiskey Benders. Jackpot Music Hall: 943 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-8321085. It’s Karaoke Time! MiniBar: 3810 Broadway. Sonic Spectrum Trivia: the Bizarre, Pop Culture and Travel, 7 p.m. RecordBar: 1020 Westport Rd., 816-753-5207. Karaoke with Baby Brie, 9 p.m. The Roxy: 7230 W. 75th St., Overland Park, 913-236-6211. Karaoke.

OPEN MIC/JAM SESSIONS DiCarlo’s Mustard Seed Mexican-Americana Restaurant & Bar: 15015 E. U.S. Hwy. 40, 816-373-4240. Blues, country and classic rock hosted by Rick Eidson and friends. Stanford’s Comedy Club: 1867 Village West Pkwy., Kansas City, Kan., 913-400-7500. Open Mic Night.

R O C K A B I L LY RecordBar: 1020 Westport Rd., 816-753-5207. Miss Major and Her Minor Mood Swings, 6 p.m.

SINGER-SONGWRITER Californos: 4124 Pennsylvania, 816-531-7878. Songwriter Series with Jonathan Fleig.

W E D N E S D AY 12 ROCK/POP/INDIE Jerry’s Bait Shop: 302 S.W. Main, Lee’s Summit, 816-525-1871. The Magnetics. RecordBar: 1020 Westport Rd., 816-753-5207. Bob Walkenhorst, 7 p.m.

BLUES/FUNK/SOUL B.B.’s Lawnside BBQ: 1205 E. 85th St., 816-822-7427. Shinetop Jr. Knuckleheads Saloon: 2715 Rochester, 816-483-1456. Scott Moyer Band, Justin Andrew Murray, 7:30 p.m.; Gospel Lounge with Carl Butler, 7:30 p.m. Quasimodo: 12056 W. 135th St., Overland Park, 913-239-9666. Rick Bacus Trio. Trouser Mouse: 625 N.W. Mock Ave., Blue Springs, 816-2201222. Rich Berry.

DJ Coda: 1744 Broadway, 816-569-1747. Sonic Spectrum with DJ Robert Moore, 10 p.m.

ACOUSTIC Fuel: 7300 W. 119th St., Overland Park, 913-451-0444. Colby & Mole.

JAZZ The Phoenix: 302 W. Eighth St., 816-221-5299. A La Mode.

COMEDY Improv Comedy Club and Dinner Theater: 7260 N.W. 87th St., 816-759-5233. The Kick Comedy. Missie B’s: 805 W. 39th St., 816-561-0625. Dirty Dorothy on the main floor, 10 p.m. Stanford’s Comedy Club: 1867 Village West Pkwy., Kansas City, Kan., 913-400-7500. Dan Cummins.

BAR GAMES/DRUNKEN DISTRACTIONS The All-Star Rock Bar: 7210 N.E. 43rd St., 816-452-2660. Karaoke. The Blue Line: 529 Walnut, 816-472-7825. Karaoke. Danny’s Bar and Grill: 13350 College Blvd., Lenexa, 913-3459717. Trivia and karaoke with DJ Smooth, 8 p.m. 403 Club: 403 N. Fifth St., 913-499-8392. Pinball tournament, Cash prize for winner, 8:30 p.m., $5 entry fee. Hurricane Allie’s Bar and Grill: 5541 Merriam Dr., Shawnee, 913-217-7665. Bike night; karaoke, 8:30 p.m. Qudos Cigar & Cognac Bar: 1116 Grand, 816-474-2270. Red Cup Wednesdays, 5-8 p.m.

OPEN MIC/JAM SESSIONS The Hideout: 6948 N. Oak Tfwy., 816-468-0550. Open blues jam.


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33


S AVA G E L O V E

POLY PASSAGES Dear Readers: Sometimes I kick the proverbial hornet’s nest intentionally — “bullshit in the Bible,” for instance — and sometimes I kick the hornet’s nest accidentally. I honestly didn’t expect the outraged response I got after I wrote that poly wasn’t a sexual identity in the “sexual orientation” sense of the term. Some people identify as poly, of course, just as some people identify as, say, dominant or submissive. While I recognize that poly (or D/s) can be central to someone’s sexual identity, I’ve never viewed it as a sexual orientation and I didn’t think this was a controversial point of view. Many poly people disagree. I’ve received a ton of impassioned e-mails from polyamorous readers, most of whom see themselves as poly-oriented, not just poly-identified. And while some seem confused — I’ve never denied the existence of polyamorous people, and I never said people couldn’t or shouldn’t identify as polyamorous — I’m turning the rest of this week’s column over to the poly-outraged. Dear Dan: I’ve been poly all my life, since well

before I knew there was such a possibility. As far back as grade school, I’ve generally had a crush on more than one boy/guy/man, and as an adult, I can’t imagine a life where I’m limited to one man, even though I love my husband deeply. When I was with someone before I knew about polyamory, I’d cheat. I wouldn’t want to, but sooner or later I’d meet someone else and fall in love so hard that I had to be with the other person, too. I hated cheating. I hated dishonesty. I hated myself. Reading Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy’s book The Ethical Slut changed my life. I finally understood the person I had been my whole life. I’m poly. I’m not monogamous and I can’t choose to be monogamous. I will always have the capacity to love more than one person and the incapacity to keep myself from falling in love with others — the way you will always have the capacity to love men romantically and no capacity to love women. It’s a choice whether I act on that capacity, just like it’s a choice whether you act on your attraction to men, but it’s not a choice whether I fall in love with more than one person at a time. Some people might just flirt with the lifestyle, but some of us are built to love more than one person at a time.

Poly of Long Years Dear Dan: To enshrine the homosexualityheterosexuality spectrum as the one sexual motivator around which individuals can choose an identity seems strange to me. I’m a hetero-identified man, but I could be in a homosexual relationship if a situation forced me to choose a partner from outside my preferred sexual gender orientation (jail, for example). It wouldn’t change how I identified, but it would change the relationship I was in. However, the fact that closeted homosexual men operate in hetero relationships and fuck 34

THE PITCH

DECEMBER 6 -12, 2012

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their wives, or hetero guys fuck other hetero guys in jail or submarines, doesn’t make the identities of gay and straight any less valid.

Thinking Straight Dear Dan: I believe sexuality exists on spec-

trums. Not just one spectrum from gay to straight with bi in the middle but several spectrums. One spectrum is how sexual you are, from those with little to no sex drive to people who have very active sex drives. There is also, perhaps, a spectrum from monogamous to polyamorous. You say monogamy and polyamory are things people do, not things people are. However, I feel that some people can be innately one or the other. My husband and I decided to have a three-way. My husband could barely keep his dick hard when fucking our third. He couldn’t get into it until I got involved directly, and even then it didn’t really do much for him. (Believe me, our third was any straight guy’s dream. The only reason he wasn’t into that is because he’s really only into me.) When he’s in love with someone, all he wants is that person. He’s very one-person-and-one-person-only oriented. In contrast, although he satisfies me and I love him, I want other partners. I feel that I’m polyamorous innately. I feel that I’m wired to be like this. I didn’t choose it. Likewise, my husband couldn’t choose to be polyamorous. He can practice polyamory, and he has for my sake, but naturally he’s a monogamous person. I appreciate that you advocate nonmonogamy. I credit you with helping to save my marriage. We married as virgins and were clueless about sex. But my husband and I have a great sex life — and I’m free to pursue people on the side — because we read your column.

I Am How I Am

BY

D A N S AVA G E

Dear Dan: Hetero poly guy here. I’m part of a live-in quad, and we all raise our kids together, so I’m pretty far down the polyamory rabbit hole. Figured I’d add my two cents to the discussion. I don’t think that polyamory can really be defined as an “orientation” because that’s an improper way to describe what polyamory is. I can still be attracted to monogamous people, and being poly doesn’t change or alter that fact. I do, however, think that polyamory — or, by contrast, monogamy — can be defined as a sexual identity, and that’s where I think your advice to PP went astray. Consider: A gay man can be attracted to a straight man, correct? Similarly, I can be attracted to people who identify as monogamous. But that attraction doesn’t separate individuals from their identities. Gay men tend to date other gay men and would generally be advised not to go chasing after straight men. In the same way, I try my best to stick to other people who identify as poly. Poly is very much an identity, Dan, and poly people form communities around that identity. We face some unique challenges. (How do you raise kids in this environment? How do you balance time between partners?) And some other life challenges are made easier. (Four parents make getting kids to soccer easier.) I’m not saying we need to add a “P” to LGBTQQIA, but I don’t think we can just be written off, either.

Poly Identified E-mailer Dear Dan: I’m a bisexual, polyamorous 24-year-old woman. From the very first time I was faced with a cute boy who wanted to date me, I knew that I couldn’t be in a closed, exclusive relationship. I knew it as instinctively as I knew that I found women attractive as well as men. I had never heard of open relationships or polyamory. I was a virgin, so it wasn’t about sex. I didn’t have anyone else on the horizon and I really liked the boy, so it wasn’t about keeping my options open. And yet I knew — I knew — that I couldn’t agree to be his girlfriend without the freedom to date, f lirt, sleep with and love other people. Six years later, I started dating someone I think might turn out to be the love of my life. He’s a match for me intellectually, sexually and emotionally. We make each other so happy, it’s silly. Even so, even in the best relationship I can possibly imagine, I know monogamy is not for me. Incredibly, he feels the same way. Maybe there are very few people like me — I think most people fall somewhere in the middle, with probably more orientation toward monogamy than not — but poly people like me exist.

Poly Like Me Find the Savage Lovecast (my weekly podcast) every Tuesday at thestranger.com/ savage.

Have a question for Dan Savage? E-mail him at mail@savagelove.net pitch.com

MONTH


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The Pitch: December 6, 2012