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heartlandhealing N E W A G E H E A LT H A N D W E L L N E S S B Y M I C H A E L B R AU N S T E I N
Panchakarma: Five Giant Steps to Wellness
ime will tell, they say. If true, then time has something to say about the practice of medicine: It’s been around for a long, long time. Surgery and drugs were not always the “go-to” response when someone got sick. In fact, medicine used to spot imbalances way before they became grossly manifest. Oh, modern medicine is still trying its darnedest to spot illness early on but so often the techniques and methods used end up being controversial (mammograms), inaccurate in providing falsepositives and false-negatives (PSA tests), or clearly useless (annual pap smears). In fact, medical researchers agree that a vast number of tests and procedures commonly practiced by Western medicine are useless or dangerous. Enter time-tested medicine. Years ago, cardiologist Richard Collins told me, ”Western medicine has become too procedureoriented,” he said. “It’s the procedure that we charge money for and that’s what is the basis of operation for conventional medicine. We need to look into the cause, not simply treat the symptom.” A 6,000-year-old medical system called ayurveda does just that. Ayurveda is a holistic approach to healing and health. Documented in the ancient Vedic texts of India, it observes the subtle levels of existence and recognizes we are made of energy. Ironically, this viewpoint is supported by modern quantum physics. In fact, quantum physics theories that we think are so new were laid out in the Vedas, only in Sanskrit terms. These fields of energy influence the physical state that we know as bodies. Consciousness (energy) is primary; body (matter) is secondary. To maintain lasting health, we must address the cause (energy), not the effect (body). In a simple sense, ayurveda notes that if the energy flowing in the body maintains a state of balance, the body assumes its natural, healthy condition. If unbalanced, disease results. Ayurveda detects imbalance and encourages natural steps to health. Ayurveda calls the three main energies doshas. Each is characterized by basic traits. Vata, the primary dosha, is seen as the energy of movement, identified with the metaphor of air. Pitta is the dosha of metabolism, drive of all sorts. It is fire-like. Kapha has the character of weightiness, earth-like. Each of us has a balanced combination of all three doshas and their balance defines our basic mind/body type. Ayurveda has a particular method of addressing imbalances and reestablishing harmony within the body. It is called
panchakarma, loosely translated from the Sanskrit as “the five steps.” The Raj. I experienced panchakarma first-hand years ago at the four-star resort/healing center in Fairfield, Iowa known as The Raj. My visit began with an exam by then-medical director Christopher Clark, M.D., a graduate of Yale medical school, trained in Maharishi Ayur-Veda. “A patient is not an isolated entity,” Clark said. “He is connected to the rhythm of nature; everything he interacts with. This is a wider perspective and makes one a better physician.” After taking a history and discussing any medical concerns, Clark uses an ayurvedic technique known as nadi, or pulse-diagnosis. “The pulse flows through the entire body and indicates imbalances in the doshas and where blockages are. It’s not a difficult technique to learn, but it takes years of experience to perfect,” he said. Step by step. Clark’s orders included the list of herbs to infuse the sesame oil set aside for my private use during my treatments. The first of the five steps is oleation, (in Sanskrit, snehana), using natural oils to prepare and lubricate the body for treatments. Next is purging (virechana) of the body internally by the use of natural laxative herbs. Third is steam cleaning of the pores in a sauna-like room (svedhana). Next is basti, the use of herbal enemas. Fifth is nasya, the cleansing of the sinuses and nasal chamber. All of these steps have different options to accomplish them. My first treatment was a tag-team massage known as Abhyanga performed on one of the exotic, oversized mahogany therapy tables, slightly inclined and designed with an oil-catching trough around the perimeter. All of the therapists at The Raj undergo intensive training. My masseurs were from India. Over the next three days, I received Udvartina, a massage with a specialized herbal paste; Garshana, a dry massage using silk gloves; Vishesh, a deeper muscle massage. Then came Swedana, a heat treatment to loosen toxins further; the popular Shirodara, a steady stream of warm, herbal oil from a basin suspended over the forehead. Pizzacilli was the most exotic. Using gallons of my specially prepared herbal oil, two technicians bathed and massaged me in a flood of heated oil from two hoses. The temperature is slowly increased with my head cooled with herbal oils. Pinda Swedana takes three technicians rubbing vigorously with silk boluses of herbalized rice and milk. Along with pure, vegetarian epicurean meals, light yoga, evening lectures and each day filled with the coherent energy at The Raj, panchakarma is five giant steps toward health. Be well. ,
VISIONS FROM FIVE MINUTES INTO THE FUTURE • AUGUST 22, 2014 • Tramping will return as a way ifoflife. life. Young adults will develop a terrible wanderlust and a desire to leave the city, and by the thousands and tens of thousands will take to the roads, moving from town to town, state to state, seeking temporary work where
they can ﬁnd it. Some will blame the economy, some will blame a dissatisfaction with the social media experience, but, whatever the cause, young America in the near future will be the most unsettled generation we have yet seen.
HEARTLAND HEALING is a New Age polemic describing alternatives to conventional methods
of healing the body, mind and planet. It is provided as information and entertainment, certainly not medical advice. It is not an endorsement of any particular therapy, either by the writer or The Reader. Visit HeartlandHealing.com for more information.
| THE READER |
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR FOOD DESTINY BY SARA LOCKE
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Tribute to WALTER TROUT a
a Special Concert Event to Raise Organ Donor Awareness & to Benefit the Walter Trout Band presented by Playing With Fire, The Blues Society of Omaha, Donate Life Nebraska & The Nebraska Medical Center SUNDAY, AUGUST 31, 2014 River City Star, Miller’s Landing, 151 Freedom Park Road, Omaha Gates at 2 p.m., music 3-10 p.m. or later with an ALL-STAR LATE-NIGHT JAM Performances by The Walter Trout Band fronted by British Blues guitar sensation DANNY BRYANT with special guest, JON TROUT (Walter’s son) Special guests include: Curtis Salgado do Curtis Salga The Cordle/Scott Band, featuring Tim Scott The Brad Cordle Band Brandon Mi ller Nick Schnebelen (of Trampled Under Foot)
Brandon Miller (KC) The Laurie Morvan Band Lou Deluca & the Delta 88s plus BluesEd youth bands with SPECIAL SURPRISE BLUES MUSIC AWARD-WINNING GUESTS Music on three covered stages including the Pavilion Main Stage & two stages on the docked Kon-Tiki-O Party Barge at The River City Star. Tickets are $20. Advance Tickets can be purchased at The 21st Saloon, 96th & L, and online at www.rivercitystar.com
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
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s fast as fad diets come and go, faithful foodies, vegans, carnivores, and even the sometimes hard to understand world of raw consumers can all agree on one thing, and that is we should all be eating more fruits and vegetables. That should be easy enough, right? I mean, who doesn’t love fresh summer watermelon juice dripping off of their elbows, or a tomato so sweet and crisp you just sink your teeth into it like an apple? A quick gander at a weekly circular indicates that an in-season, hydroponically grown, slightly waxy, chemically bathed hybrid tomato is on sale this week…and still incredibly expensive. Red bell peppers are $1.20 each. My favorite recipe for red peppers calls for six! Growing our own is clearly the most cost effective, healthful choice. And did you know that the average sized human burns about 350 calories an hour gardening? So you’re doing even more good for your body than just filling it with delicious nutrients and adorning it in a glorious farmer’s tan. So, no problem! I’ll just hop out to my garden and - wait. I don’t have a garden. You either, huh? So how does one go about acquiring a bit of earth? Renters, apartment dwellers, and ye of pitiable lands rejoice, for Omaha has a rich and thriving Community Garden scene. I spoke with Kurt Goetzinger, founder of Benson community gardens, who told me “Before I purchased the land and started the garden 4 years ago, I had grown a tomato and a pepper. That’s it! I’ve come a long way, and that’s thanks to the community we’ve developed.” And the community thanks him right back. In addition to providing the space, Goetzinger planted a 400 square foot neighborhood garden along the perimeter of the land. The bonus garden boasts beautiful produce that he offers free for passers-by to pick. The only stipulation is that they take only what they need.
■ DRINK WINE WITH WINE PEOPLE The Boiler Room’s Fourth Annual Guild of Sommeliers Dinner is scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 28, at 5:30 p.m. This five course meal is hosted by Master Sommeliers Matt Stamp and Jesse Becker. This annual dinner is a fundraiser for the Guild of Sommeliers. Reserve a ticket ($225, not including tax and gratuity) beforehand to make sure you get a spot. www.boilerroomomaha.com ■ THE GOOD FOOD REVOLUTION Sustainable art shows are popping up all over town, all with the mutual goal of bringing attention to the sustainability movement. The pieces displayed are designed to prompt conversation about where our food comes from and what people can do to make sure they are eating real, actual food instead of ersatz, processed junk. Upcoming shows include Branched Oak Farm
Kurt tells me that this is the time to become active with your local garden. It more typically occurs to us in the spring, when seeds adorn the aisles of every grocery store and convenience shop we wander, or in the summer when we wish we had planted and could enjoy the harvest. He explains that each garden has its own set of rules and regulations, pesticide and fertilizer options, and code of conduct. This is the time to find a place with a location you can get to regularly, as you will be in charge of all of your own upkeep. A mess in your plot means weeds in everyone’s plots, meaning nobody wants to barter their squash for your snap peas come harvest. You might find yourself already on a waiting list at your top spot, but take heart. Occasionally, someone will abandon a plot due to a move, injury, or it being more of a time investment than they had anticipated. It is an investment, but the payoff is astronomical. Not only do you find your health improving, but you’re creating friendships, reducing your reliance on factory-farmed, nutritionally-bankrupt frankenfoods, and increasing the property value of everything surrounding your garden. The simple act of planting a garden is a huge quality of life boost for everyone in our city, and one you should be proud of. Once you’ve located a garden you would like to be a part of, contact the organizer for a tour and for information on what the garden might need. Even if you aren’t interested in planting, donations of land, healthy soil, and gardening tools are always welcome. I asked Kurt why, with his then limited knowledge of gardening, would he choose to undertake such a venture. He replied simply “To create something beautiful. Something that only added value to our community.” Let’s all put that on our to-do list. , Benson Community Gardens, 1302 N. 60th St. bensongardens.org. Find one of the other many Omaha-area community gardens by searching online. Sept. 6 and Dixie Quicks Sept. 11. www.lexiconofsustainability.com ■ FIDO LIKES DUNDEE Marks Bistro wants to remind everyone that they not only have a beautiful outdoor patio available while the weather is nice, but also that the patio is a dog-friendly spot. So if you prefer to bring your dog with you everywhere you go, you’re in luck if you also have a hankering for some really good food. www.marksindundee.com ■ Attack of the 50 ft Brunette Attendees at the Great Nebraska Beer Fest Aug. 23 will be among the first to try Nebraska Brewing Company’s newest collaboration with New Holland Brewing. Dubbed “Attack of the 50 Foot Brunette,” this brown ale features notes of vanilla and clove. www.nebraskabrewingco.com — Tamsen Butler Crumbs is about indulging in food and celebrating its many forms. Send information about area food and drink businesses to firstname.lastname@example.org.
f redevelopment plans for northeast Omaha come to full fruition then that long depressed district will see progress at-scale after years of patchwork promises. Old and new leaders from largely African-American North Omaha will be the driving forces for change. A few years and projects into the 30-year, $1.4 billion North Omaha Revitalization Village Plan, everyone agrees this massive revival is necessary for the area to be on the right side of the tipping point. The plan’s part of a mosaic of efforts addressing educational, economic, health care, housing, employment disparities. Behind these initiatives is a coalition from the private and public sectors working together to apply a focused, holistic approach for making a lasting difference. Key contributors are African-American leaders who emerged in the last decade to assume top posts in organizations and bodies leading the charge. AfricanAmerican Empowerment Network President-Facilitator Willie Barney, Douglas Country Treasurer John Ewing Jr., Urban League of Nebraska Executive Director Thomas Warren and Omaha City Councilman Ben Gray are among the most visible. When they entered the scene they represented a new leadership class but individually and collectively they’ve become its wellestablished players. More recently, Nebraska State Sen. Tanya Cook and Omaha 360 Director Jamie Anders-Kemp joined their ranks. Others, such as North Omaha Development Corporation Executive Director Michael Maroney and former Omaha City Councilwoman and Neb. State Sen. Brenda Council, have been doing this work for decades. With so much yet to come and on the line, what happens when the current crop of leaders drops away? Who will be the new faces and voices of transformation? Are there clear pathways to leadership? Are there mechanisms to groom new leaders? Is there generational tension between older and younger leaders? What does the next generation want to see happen and where do they see things headed? The Reader asked veteran and emerging players for answers and they said talent is already in place or poised to assume next generation leadership. They express optimism about North O’s direction and a consensus for how to get there. They say leadership also comes in many forms. It’s Sharif Liwaru as executive director of the Malcolm X Memorial Foundation, which he hopes to turn into an international attraction. It’s his artist-educator wife Gabrielle Gaines Liwaru. Together, they’re a dynamic couple focused on community betterment. Union for Contemporary Arts founder-director Brigitte McQueen, Loves Jazz and Arts Center Executive Director Tim Clark and Great Plains Black History Museum Board Chairman Jim Beatty are embedded in the community leading endeavors that are part of North O’s revival. Seventy-Five North Revitalization Corp. Executive Director Othello Meadows is a more behind-thescenes leader. His nonprofit has acquired property and finished first-round financing for the Highlander mixed-used project, a key Village Plan component. The project will redevelop 40 acres into mixed income housing, green spaces and on-site support services for “a purpose-built” urban community. Meadows says the opportunity to “work on a project of this magnitude in a city I care about is a chance
of a lifetime.” He’s encouraged by the “burgeoning support for doing significant things in the community.” In his view, the best thing leaders can do is “execute and make projects a reality,” adding, “When things start to happen in a real concrete fashion then you start to peel back some of that hopelessness and woundedness. I think people are really tired of rhetoric, studies and statistics and want to see something come to life.” He says new housing in the Prospect Hill neighborhood is tangible positive activity. Meadows doesn’t consider himself a traditional leader. “I think leadership is first and foremost about service and humility. I try to think of myself as somebody who is a vessel for the hopes and desires of this neighborhood. True leadership is service and service for a cause, so if that’s the definition of leadership, then sure, I am one.” He feels North O’s suffered from expecting leadership to come from charismatic saviors who lead great causes from on high. “In my mind we have to have a different paradigm for the way we consider leadership. I think it happens on a much smaller scale. I think of people who are leaders on their block, people who serve their community by being good neighbors or citizens. That’s the
kind of leadership that’s overlooked. I think it has to shift from we’ve got five or six people we look to for leadership to we’ve got 500 or 600 people who are all active leaders in their own community. It needs to shift to that more grassroots, bottom-up view.” Where can aspiring North O leaders get their start? “Wherever you are, lead,” John Ewing says. “Whatever opportunities come, seize them. Schools, places of worship, neighborhood and elected office all offer opportunities if we see the specific opportunity.” “They need to get in where they fit in and grow from there,” says Dell Gines, senior community development advisor, Omaha Branch at Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. Empowerment Network board member and Douglas County Health Department health educator Aja Anderson says many people lead without recognition but that doesn’t make them any less leaders. “There are individuals on our streets, in our classrooms, everywhere, every day guiding those around them to some greater destiny or outcome,” Anderson says. Meadows feels the community has looked too often for leadership to come from outside. “A community needs to guide its own destiny rather than say, ‘Who’s going to come in from outside and fix this?’”
He applauds the Empowerment Network for “trying to find ways to help people become their own change agents.” Carver Bank Interim Program Coordinator JoAnna LeFlore is someone often identified as an emerging leader. She in turn looks to some of her Next Gen colleagues for inspiration. “I’m very inspired by Brigitte McQueen, Othello Meadows and Sharif Liwaru. They all have managed to chase their dreams, advocate for the well-being of North Omaha and maintain a professional career despite all of the obstacles in their way. You have to have a certain level of hunger in North Omaha in order to survive. What follows that drive is a certain level of humility once you become successful. This is why I look up to them.” LeFlore is emboldened to continue serving her community by the progress she sees happening. “I see more creative entrepreneurs and businesses. I see more community-wide events celebrating our heritage. I see more financial support for redevelopment. I feel my part in this is to continue to encourage others who share interest in the growth of North Omaha. I’ve built trusting relationships with people along the way. I am intentional about my commitments because those relationships and the missions are important to me. Simply being a genuine supporter, who also gets her hands dirty, is my biggest contribution. “Moving forward, I will make an honest effort to offer my expertise to help build communication strategies, offer consultations for grassroots marketing and event planning and be an advocate for positive change. I am also not afraid to speak up about important issues.” If LeFlore’s a Next Gen leader, then Omaha Small Business Network Executive Director Julia Parker is, too. Parker says, “There is certainly a changing of the guard taking place throughout Omaha and North O is not an exception. Over the next several years, I hope even more young professionals will continue to take high level positions in the community. I see several young leaders picking up the mic.” She’s among the new guard between her OSBN work and the Urban Collaborative: A Commitment to Community group she co-founded that she says “focuses on fostering meaningful conversation around how we can improve our neighborhoods and the entire city.” Parker left her hometown for a time and she says, “Leaving Omaha changed my perspective and really prompted me to come home with a more critical eye and a yearning for change.” Like Parker, Othello Meadows left here but moved back when he discerned he could make a “meaningful” impact on a community he found beset by despair. That bleak environment is what’s led many young, gifted and black to leave here. Old-line North O leader Thomas Warren says, “I am concerned about the brain drain we experience in Omaha, particularly of our best and brightest young African-American students who leave. We need to create an environment that is welcoming to the next generation where they can thrive and strive to reach their full potential.” Two more entrenched leaders, John Ewing and Douglas County Commissioner Chris Rodgers, are also worried about losing North O’s promising talents. “We have to identify, retain and develop our talent pool in Omaha,” Ewing says. Omaha Schools Board member Yolanda Williams says leadership doors have not always been open to6y-
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AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
y continued from page 5 oung transplants like herself – she’s originally from Seattle – who lack built-in influence bases. “I had to go knock on the door and I knocked and knocked, and then I started banging on the door until my mentor John Ewing and I sat down for lunch and I asked, ‘How do younger leaders get in these positions if you all are holding these positions for years? How do I get into a leadership role if nobody is willing to get out of the way?’ They need to step out of the way so we can move up. “It’s nothing against our elder leadership because I think they do a great job but they need to reach out and find someone to mentor and groom because if not what happens when they leave those positions?” Ewing acknowledges “There has been and will always be tension between the generations,” but he adds, “I believe this creative tension is a great thing. It keeps the socalled established leaders from becoming complacent and keeps the emerging leaders hungry for more success as a community. I believe most of the relationships are cordial and productive as well as collaborative. I believe everyone can always do more to listen. I believe the young professional networks are a great avenue. I also believe organizations like the Empowerment Network should reach out to emerging leaders to be inclusive.” Author, motivational speaker and The Truth Heals founder-CEO Tunette Powell says, “It’s really amazing when you get those older leaders on board because they can champion you. They’ve allowed me to speak at so many different places.” Powell senses a change afoot among veteran leaders, “They have held down these neighborhoods for so long and I think they’re slowly handing over and allowing young people to have a platform. I see that bridge.” As a young leader, she says, “it’s not like I want to step on their toes. We need this team. It’s not just going to be one leader, it’s not going to be young versus old, it’s going to be old and young coming together.” In her own case, Yolanda Williams says she simply wouldn’t be denied, “I got tired of waiting. I was diligent, I was purpose-driven. It was very much networking and being places and getting my name out there. I mean, I was here to stay, you were not just going to get rid of me.” LeFlore agrees more can be done to let new blood in. “I think some established leaders are ignoring the young professionals who have potential to do more.” Despite progress, Powell says “there are not enough young people at the table.” She believes inviting their participation is incumbent on stakeholder organizations. She would also like to see Omaha 360 or another entity develop a formal mentoring program or process for older leaders “to show us that staircase.” Some older leaders do push younger colleagues to enter the fray. Shawntal Smith, statewide administrator for Community Services for Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska, says Brenda Council, Willie Barney and Ben Gray are some who’ve nudged her. “I get lots of encouragement from many inside and outside of North Omaha to serve and it is a good feeling to know people trust you to represent them. It is also a great responsibility.” Everyone has somebody who prods them along. For Tunette Powell, it’s Center for Holistic Development President-CEO Doris Moore. For Williams, it’s treasurer John Ewing. But at the end of the day anyone who wants to lead has to make it happen. Williams, who won her school board seat in a district-wide election, says she overcame
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
| THE READER |
certain disadvantages and a minuscule campaign budget through “conviction and passion,” adding, “The reality is if you want to do something you’ve got to put yourself out there.” She built a coalition of parent and educator constituents working as an artist-in-residence and Partnership 4 Kids resource in schools. Before that, Williams says she made herself known by volunteering. “That started my journey.” Powell broke through volunteering as well. “I wasn’t from here, nobody knew me, so I volunteered and it’s transformed my life,” says the San Antonio native. “The best experience, in my opinion, is board service,” OSBN’s Julia Parker says. “Young leaders have a unique opportunity to pull back the curtain and see how an organization actually functions or doesn’t. It’s a high level way to cut your teeth in the social sector.” Chris Rodgers, director of community and government relations at Creighton University, agrees: “I think small non-profits looking for active, conscientious board members are a good start. Also volunteering for causes you feel deeply about and taking on some things that stretch you are always good.” The Urban League’s Thomas Warren says, “We have to encourage the next generation of leaders to invest in their own professional growth and take advantage of leadership development opportunities. They should attend workshops and seminars to enhance their skills or go back to school and pursue advanced degrees. Acquiring credentials ensures you are prepared when opportunities present themselves.” Gaining experience is vital but a fire-in-the-belly is a must, too. Yolanda Williams says she was driven to serve on the school board because “I felt like I could bring a voice, especially for North Omaha, that hadn’t yet been heard at the table as a younger single parent representing the concerns and struggles of a lot of other parents. And I’m a little bit outspoken I say what I need to say unapologetically.” Powell says young leaders like her and Williams have the advantage of “not being far removed from the hard times the people we’re trying to reach are experiencing.” She says she and her peers are the children of the war on drugs and its cycle of broken homes. “That’s a piece of what we are, so we get it. We can reach these young people because our generation reflects theirs. I see myself in so many young people.” Just a few years ago Powell had quit college, was on food stamps and didn’t know what to do with her life. “People pulled me up, they elevated me, and I have to give that back,” she says. In her work with fatherless girls she says “what I find is you’ve got to meet them where they’re at. As younger leaders we’re not afraid to do that, we’re not afraid to take some risks and do some things differently. We’re seeing we need something fresh. Creativity is huge. When you look at young and old leaders, we all have that same passion, we all want the same thing, but how we go about it is completely different.” Powell says the African-American Young Professionals group begun by fellow rising young star Symone Sanders is a powerful connecting point where “dynamic people doing great things” find a common ground of interests and a forum to network. “We respect each other because we know we’re all going in that direction of change.” Sanders, who’s worked with the Empowerment Network and is now communications assistant for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Chuck Hassebrook, says AAYP is designed to give like-minded young professionals
an avenue “to come together and get to know one another and to be introduced in those rooms and at those tables” where policy and program decisions get made. Aja Anderson believes Next Gen leaders “bridge the gap,” saying, “I think this generation of leaders is going to be influential and do exceptionally well at creating unity and collaboration among community leaders and members across generations. We’re fueled with new ideas, creativity and innovation. Having this group of individuals at the table will certainly make some nervous, others excited and re-ignite passion and ideas in our established group.” County treasure John Ewing sees the benefit of new approaches. “I believe our emerging leaders have an entrepreneurial spirit that will be helpful in building an AfricanAmerican business class in Omaha.” While Williams sees things “opening up,” she says, “I think a lot of potential leaders have left here because that opportunity isn’t as open as it should be.” Enough are staying to make a difference. “It’s exciting to see people I’ve known a long time staying committed to where we grew up,” 75 North’s Othello Meadows says. “It’s good to see other people who at least for awhile are going to play their role and do their part.” Shawntal Smith of Lutheran Family Services is bullish on the Next Gen. “We are starting to come into our own. We are being appointed to boards and accepting high level positions of influence in our companies, firms, agencies and churches. We are highly educated and we are fighting the brain drain that usually takes place when young, gifted minorities leave this city for more diverse cities with better opportunities. We are remaining loyal to Omaha and we are trying to make it better through our visible efforts in the community. “People are starting to recognize we are dedicated and our opinions, ideas and leadership matter.” Old and young leaders feel more blacks are needed in policymaking capacities. Rodgers and Anderson are eager to see more representation in legislative chambers and corporate board rooms. Warren says, “I do feel there needs to be more opportunities in the private sector for emerging leaders who are indigenous to this community.” He feels corporations should do more to identify and develop homegrown talent who are then more likely to stay. Shawntal Smith describes an added benefit of locally grown leaders. “North Omahans respect a young professional who grew up in North Omaha and continues to reside in North Omaha and contribute to making it better. Both my husband and I live, shop, work, volunteer and attend church in North Omaha. We believe strongly in the resiliency of our community and we love being a positive addition to North Omaha and leaders for our sons and others to model.” With leadership comes scrutiny and criticism. “You have to be willing to take a risk and nobody succeeds without failure along the way to grow from,” Rodgers says. “If you fail, fail quick and recover. Learn from the mistake and don’t make the same mistakes. You have to be comfortable with the fact that not everybody will like you.” Tunette Powell isn’t afraid to stumble because like her Next Gen peers she’s too busy getting things done. “As Maya Angelou said, ‘Nothing will work unless you do,’ I want people to say about me, ‘She gave everything she had.’” , Read more of Leo Adam Biga’s work at leoadambiga.wordpress.com.
FREE CONCERTS. FREE PARKING. FOOD & DRINKS AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE.
| THE READER |
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
Tuesdays, 8 p.m. (GSN)
In this new game show, teams face off to solve clever visual puzzles – the kind that require close observation to answer a slightly deceptive question. For example, contestants look at a picture of houses sporting a variety of national flags on a residential street and try to figure out which flag “shows no national pride.” The correct answer, of course, is the raised red flag on a mailbox tucked in the picture’s lower left-hand corner. “Idiotest” is your basic game show, with countdowns, flashing lights and overwrought music. But it’s boosted by host Ben Gleib, who mercilessly teases the “idiots” trying to get the answers right. Gleib is caustic without being cruel – a neat trick. Although “Idiotest” has no redeeming social value, I’ll keep tuning in for the puzzles and the patter. If that makes me an idiot, so be it. — Dean Robbins
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
T H E R E A D E R ’ S E N T E RTA I N M E N T P I C K S AU G . 2 1- 2 7, 2 014
THURSDAY21 Aug. 21-Sept. 14
WE ARE PROUD TO PRESENT…
SNAP Productions, 3225 California Ave. Thurs-Sat: 8 p.m. Sun: 6 p.m. Sun. Sept. 14: 2 p.m. Tickets: $12-$15, www.snapproductions.com The title takes up so much space that we decided to take charge and shorten it. Kind of like how, in a play within a play, six characters try to control their search for a story, Pirandello-like, but don’t really know what they are doing. They aim to probe historically obscure genocide. The work by 32-year-old Jackie Sibblies Drury has confronted and entertained audiences in New York, Chicago and Washington (“… dark, funny and unruly…” Washington Post) and garnered the prestigious Edgerton New Play Award. The seemingly improvising performers want to shed light on a centuries old subjugation of native African people by German colonists. However, Drury says that the result “ends up centered on America and how our concepts of race become confused…and inescapable.” Consider the proximities in the venue. The actors may be truly in your face. — Gordon Spencer
Through Aug. 30
JAMIE BURMEISTER, ARTISTS & MODELS
Modern Arts Midtown 3615 Dodge St. ModernArtsMidtown.com
This show puts Burmeister’s “vermin”— the four-inch human figures in BEN GLEIB various positions and materials that he has been making for the last several years — to new and interesting uses, facilitated by new technology —specifically, 3-D printing. Whereas earlier renditions of the vermin had something of the prehistoric about them — simple clay figurines that one could imagine being unearthed from a tomb — these new vermin are much more precisely drawn. The work takes up the challenge of specificity and in so doing moves away from its totemic past and becomes representational, and as diverse in its representations as modern society requires. One side of the gallery features a narrow wooden shelf on which, by my count, 56 of the figurines are spread out in various groupings that beg to be interpreted —a man proselytizes to a stranger while a bystander with a bat ap-
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JESSICA HERNANDEZ AND THE DELTAS
proaches, a man and a woman are digging for buried treasure, a small crowd is staring at the huge heart being painted by their tiny colleagues on the wall above them. What are all of these figures doing, and how are they related to one another? Meanwhile, on the other side of the gallery, Burmeister has wall-mounted six zoetropes, replicas of nineteenth-century viewing devices that create the “illusion” of motion by showing a series of visual representations in rapid succession—or rather, in as rapid a succession as the viewer would like, since the speed is determined by a crank that the viewer turns. In the zoetrope works, it is the vermin, very particularly posed, who illustrate comically familiar activities such as clapping hands and swatting away a fly. Burmeister takes this fascination with gradual, comical variations to an entertaining extreme in the piece “Chicken Dance,” which lives up to its name, complete with incessant polka music. There are also large sculptures in the gallery’s outdoor space that depict vermin exploring, or being trapped by large web-like metal structures. — David Thompson
ART BY JAMIE BURMEISTER
SUNDAY24 Aug. 24
JESSICA HERNANDEZ & THE DELTAS W/FREAKABOUT AND SATURN MOTH The Slowdown 729 N. 14th St. 9:00 p.m., $8 ADV www.theslowdown.com
Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas along with two other bands will hit The Slowdown on Sunday for a night of rock. Hernandez knows how to sing with a passion that never quits. “Caught Up,” a song on their new album Secret Evil, which released this week, demonstrates the type of non-stop lively and creative capability Hernandez and her band have. Jessica Hernandez and The Deltas are a band that cannot be placed into one genre, their sound is far more complex and original. People have described the band as funky reggae, jazz, rock and so much more. Joining this band is a group from Lincoln that has been around since 2011, Freakabout. Cortney Kirby has an emotional attachment to each word in the songs and keeps you holding on for the next. It’s a rock rollercoaster of sound that leaves you with an energetic vibe. Saturn Moth is another band to join these two hailing from Omaha they give a good name to garage or riff rock. The band members formed Saturn Moth while in college in 2010 and since then have crafted their sound and moved themselves up in the music scene. Make sure to come out for these three unique bands. — Mara Wilson
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AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
PORTUGAL. THE MAN EMBARKS ON ITS BIGGEST TOUR EVER BY KYLE EUSTICE
veryone is talking about well-known hip-hop producer Danger Mouse collaborating with indie rock outfit Portugal. The Man. It’s in the Albuquerque Journal, Rolling Stone, MTV—pretty much everywhere. But before vocalist John Gourley and bassist Zach Carothers formed Portugal. The Man, they lived in a small Alaskan village with only their imaginations and a handful of musical ambitions to keep them company. Gourley formed his first band, Anatomy of a Ghost, with Carothers in 2002 in Wasilla, Alaska. Although the group quickly became popular, they just as quickly broke up and Gourley started Portugal. The Man as a side project. Their Alaskan upbringings really allowed their musical palates to roam until they landed on a solid sound all their own. However, it also made seeing live music a little more challenging and they subsequently moved to Portland, Oregon, which really kicked their creativity into high gear. “I loved it,” Carothers says. ”But it was kind of a messed up place. There are a lot of drugs and alcohol up there because there’s not a lot to do in terms of nightlife or concerts. Luckily, both John and I are really into the outdoors. We love fishing, hunting, camping, and writing music so we kept ourselves busy and didn’t go down that dark path. It was a very inspiring place in general,” he continues. “The isolation and natural beauty was really good for me. A lot of people can’t handle it, but I miss it terribly. But it was the blend of leaving Alaska and moving down to Portland, Oregon that really inspired us. We didn’t get a lot of music up there. I went to a lot of shows as a kid in Alaska. Even if I straight up hated the artist, I would buy a $5 ticket to see it because it was the only live music I was going to see for three months When I moved down to Portland, it was insane. There were these little bars and small bands, and these shows were $3. We had no idea music could exist on that level. I think if we grew up in a place like that, we might have been a little jaded. But we got down there and immediately got so inspired that we went out on tour. That was a long time ago and we haven’t really stopped.” Portugal. The Man released its first album in 2006 on Fearless Records. Titled Waiter: “You Vultures!,” the album introduced the world to very ’60s psychedelic-inspired
we just did not like each other. It was very rough. When we went in to do Evil Friends, we had an amazing time recording it, but we wrote a lot about how we treated each other and hence the ‘evil friends’ theme. It got way more personal than any of our previous records.” Fortunately, they were able to mend whatever wounds had been opened to pair up with Grouplove for a massive tour in support of the aforementioned Danger Mouseproduced album, Evil Friends. “You just have to work really hard at it,” he says. “You have to communicate really well and sometimes not communicate at all. It’s different every time. I think as time passes, there are still plenty of issues that we haven’t gotten over. They sill come up between John and I, but we’ve been friends for a long time. We’re closer than most brothers are. We are both passionate about our band and what we do, and that’s what got us through, but it’s also what started all the fights. Most of the time, I choose my battles. We all work together very well now. “We couldn’t be more different, but we have the same values,” he continues. “We figured out a routine. We know each other’s strength and weaknesses. It’s for the better of the band. It’s the reason we’ve come so far.” Luckily for them, all of the hard work and endless dedication to their craft is paying off. The current tour is the most professional one they have ever been on. It kicked off August 10 in Seattle and wraps up September 16 in New York, with a stop in Council Bluffs on August 22. “It’s a lot busier than it used to be for sure, but it’s cool,” he says. “It’s a total bro tour; too much drinking. We’re having way too much fun. This is the first completely pro tour. Our crew is amazing. We moved to in-ear monitors and we all carry radios. It’s crazy. We are playing ridiculously huge places this tour. It’s awesome. “I love the fans in the Midwest,” he adds. “A lot of people hate on the Midwest and I don’t get it. I have a fucking blast when we come up there.” In terms of Portugal. The Man’s new music, it’s a continuation of the colorful chapter that sprouted in Alaska, blossomed in Portland and is now pollinating the rest of the world. For Evil
rock-n-roll. After a few line up changes and new deal with Equal Vision Records, the group’s notoriety began to build. A slot at both Lollapalooza and Bonnaroo in 2009 kicked it up another notch and they released The Satanic Satanist that same year. The following year, it was announced Portugal. The Man had signed with Atlantic Records, but all was not as joyous as it seemed on the surface. After 2011’s In the Mountain In the Cloud, the group’s first for Atlantic, they went in the studio to record 2013’s Evil Friends, one of their most challenging periods. “Evil Friends is more selfish, lyrically,” he explains. “We wrote it kind of about us. That was probably the darkest time of our life. It almost killed us, the band almost broke up; we were not treating each other the way we should. There were so many problems it’s hard to count. Basically,
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
| THE READER |
Friends, as the group’s other seven albums, the instruments that Portugal uses are hand-selected not just for their vintage sound, but also for specific characteristics that vary from amp to amp. Lyrically, Carothers wants to leave the interpretation up to the listener. “Honestly, I’m a fan of everybody getting what they want from it,” he says. “I’m big into lyrics and I’m big into themes, but I never really want to know what the artist meant. If I could somehow talk to Kurt Cobain, I would ask him a million questions, but I would never ask what the music meant to him. I have my own personal connection with it. I know what it means to me and that’s all that matters. That makes me a part of Nirvana or any band that I love. That’s why I love working with John. We are very much on the same wavelength. What I find so beautiful about art in general is it’s all about context and all about the personal connection with the viewer or listener. I think that’s so important.” But what about the name? What exactly does “Portugal. The Man” mean? “It all started with David Bowie,” he explains. “We are huge Bowie fans. We loved the idea of Ziggy Stardust and this alter ego, and we wanted to have an alter ego, but we weren’t just one person. We figured a country is a group of people so we wanted to name our band a country and we thought Portugal would be an amazing name for a guy so his name is Portugal and he’s the fucking man.” , Portugal. The Man with Grouplove, Aug. 22, at Stir’s Concert Cove, Council Bluffs, 7 p.m. Tickets are $45. Visit www.stircove.com for more information.
■ Local hip-hop artist TKO will headline a showcase of Omaha rappers and hip hop performers Sunday, Aug. 31, at the Slowdown, 729 N. 14th St. TKO will be joined by BOTH, Delreece and AJ the Dread. The show is in celebration of TKO’s new mixtape God King, which will be available at the show. The mixtape and the artist’s video for the title track are the culmination of TKO’s first full year of performing regularly in the metro area. ■ Check out “What Can You Do For Me?” on Soundcloud. It’s a new collaboration between local artists, guitarist/songwriter CJ Mills and R&B singer Dominique Morgan. The two will be premiering a video for the song in the coming weeks, having wrapped a shoot for the clip earlier this August. ■ LIFE is COOL also unveiled a new song, premiering it on YouTube. The song, “In This Tiny Town,” is a rubbery dance rock number with a decidedly ’80s pop bent. The Lincoln band is quickly becoming one of the more talked-about area bands and this song is another reason why your ears should investigate them. — Chris Aponick Backbeat looks at music in the metro area. Email information to firstname.lastname@example.org
rivercityrodeo.com tickets as low as $19 ticketmaster: (800) 745-3000 www.ticketmaster.com/rivercityrodeo
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AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
eventcalendar For more information about these events and more, go online to:
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ONGOINGART Courtney Porto - All Day | Connect Gallery Generation - All Day | Lux Center For the Arts UNL Legacy 1999-2013; curated by Gail Kendall, former Hixson-Lied professor of art at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, featuring 14 of Kendall’s former MFA students. Duplicity - All Day | Lux Center For the Arts Duplicity represents a departure from some of Sunny’s previous work in that instead of creating abstractions from nature she ventures further and literally flips her subject 45 degrees. Visions of Lewis and Clark - All Day | Free The Kaneko Visions of Lewis and Clark is a unique historical art exhibit consisting of thirty kites commemorating Lewis and Clark’s Corps of Discovery expedition. Truck-A-Tecture - All Day | Free The Kaneko Truck-A-Tecture examines architecture as redefined by mobility and technical expansion. Mixed Media & Musical Instruments - All Day | Fred Simon Gallery The art of Michael Giron and Riccardo Marchio in the Mixed Media & Musical Instruments exhibit. Visions of Lewis and Clark Kite Expo - All Day | $3-$7 Lauritzen Gardens Throughout the summer, thirty kites will be on view at ten participating locations throughout the metro area. Toward the Setting Sun - All Day | Free Sheldon Museum Of Art This touring exhibition organized by Plains Art Museum in Fargo, North Dakota features mixed media works on paper and oil paintings by artist T. L. Solien. An Artist’s Journey - All Day | $2-$13 University of Nebraska State Museum Presenting the evolution of artistic talent of Nebraska painter, illustrator and muralist Mark Marcuson. Titanboa - All Day | $2-$13 University of Nebraska State MuseumFrom a fossil bed 60 million years old comes the largest snake in the world - Titanoboa! Measuring 48 feet long and weighing up to 2,500 pounds, this massive predator could crush and devour a crocodile. Yard/Zone - All Day | Free University of Nebraska-Lincoln An exhibition of stitched sculptural forms by Sarah Wagner of Detroit. Urban Design Lab - All Day | Free Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts Chlo Bass and Teal Gardner, two of the Bemis Center’s Artists-in-Residence, are collaborating with 20 local researchers to shed new light on the nature of our urban landscape. Each of the researchers was recruited from a local high school. Participants in the Lab are conducting field research in various parts of the city and synthesizing that data here in this space, which consists of two parts: The Department of Local Affairs and Reading the City. Richard Charter: PLAY! - 1:00 pm | Free Smiling Turtle Art Spot Enter the bright, colorful and whimsical world of Richard Charter during our August Exhibit, PLAY! Richard’s use of vibrant
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
colors is complimented by his skill in the process of batik.
THURSDAY AUG 21 ›››MUSIC Acoustic Music Thursdays - 7:00 pm | Two Fine Irishmen Third Thursdays with Thornburg 8:00 pm | Free The Side Door Lounge Reggae Night - 8:00 pm | Free The Hive Lounge Todd Barry - 9:00 pm | $18 The Slowdown Omaha
›››MISC. Verbal Gumbo - 7:30 pm | House of Loom A monthly third-Thursday spoken word night hosted by Michelle Troxclair & Withlove, Felicia. This is the spoken word event that promotes our rich diversity of culture and style. Structured Chaos - 12:00 am | Backline Improv Theatre A full night of longform improv at its finest, jam-packed with many of Backline’s best teams. If you love forms, this night is for you. Comedy Stiles Open Mic - 10:00 pm | Free Stiles Public House
FRIDAY AUG 22 ›››MUSIC The Cornhusker Marching Band Exhibition - 7:00 pm | Free University of Nebraska-Lincoln Highlights of what the Band has been working on during their pre-season Band Camp, including the famous ‘drill down,’ a preview of the first halftime show, the Nebraska Pregame Spectacular, and many more Husker favorites. Enter Memorial Stadium through Gate 3 (SW Entrance) and Gate 11 (NW Entrance). Fork in the Road - 8:00 pm | Free Ameristar Casino Blue House & The Rent to Own Horns - 8:00 pm | $5 McKenna’s Blues Booze and BBQ Live Music - 9:00 pm | Horseshoe Council Bluffs Casino The Doneofits CD Release Party w/The Bird Shuus, The Baberaham Lincolns, Life is Cool - 9:00 pm | O’Leaver’s Pub The Doneofits, Omaha’s psychedelic folk duo (Michael Trenhaile and Ashley Rayne Boe Trenhaile) are doing a CD release party to celebrate and promote their EP Whore Bomb.
Bazinga! Trivia Night - 6:30 pm | Donation of $120 for team of 8; $150 for V.I.P. team of 8; $15 individual St. Peter Social Hall The name of the event is in recognition of the popular Big Bang Theory comedy show on television which features ‘nerdy’ scientists who deal with the finer points of life. Go online at www.bluffsarts.org to register your team maximum of 8 people. Beer, wine, soda and snacks will be provided. That’s Not Art - 7:00 pm | $30 Apollon Join us as we challenge you to see the art of things you never knew could inspire the belief that art is equal parts Artist, Audience, and the Shared Experience between them. Friday, the 22nd is Sold Out. Saturday is still available and ticket includes dinner. This event is ‘rated’ PG-13. This is an adult event. Younger guests are welcome, but please contact us to discuss age appropriateness if you have any concerns. “Interrogated” - 10:00 pm | Backline Improv Theatre Our weekly show featuring a rotating cast of Backline’s finest players. Audience members volunteer to come up on stage and confess something they’ve gotten away with in their life, then we send them back and perform scenes based on that information. Arena: Champions vs. Challengers - 11:00 pm | Backline Improv Theatre Each teams gets 20 minutes to win your vote to come back next week.
SATURDAY AUG 23 ›››MUSIC Summer Meltdown - 4:00 pm | $12 Shamrock’s Pub And Grill Omaha Summer Meltdown w/ Arson City, Rise From Ruin, Coincide, Rhetoric, Through The Stone, & Fallible At the end of August and the start of a new school year brings you the Summer Meltdown with Arson City, Rise From Ruin, Coincide, Rhetoric, Through The Stone, & Fallible. Vibes at Village Pointe - 6:30 pm | Free Village Pointe Shopping Center Join us for our final band during the 2014 summer concert series. Big Red Singers Exhibition - 7:30 pm | University of Nebraska-Lincoln Fork in the Road - 8:00 pm | Free Ameristar Casino Live Music - 9:00 pm | Horseshoe Council Bluffs Casino
2014 Dementia Safety Conference - 7:45 am | $40-$85 Ramada Plaza Convention Center The Alzheimer’s Association is proud to host a first annual Dementia Safety Conference for persons who provide care to a family member or friend with Alzheimer’s or a related dementia, as well as for health professionals and students. Presenters are dynamic community leaders and renowned experts in such safety topic areas as driving, wandering, fall prevention, medication management, home modifications, travel considerations, transition planning, frauds and scams, and much more.
Midlands Pirate Festival - 11:00 am | $5 for kids $10 for adults Bellevue Berry & Pumpkin Ranch Saturday and Sunday come out for some family fun with historical as well as fictional heroes from the 7 seas. Five stages of entertainment, featuring the premiere of a new pirate stunt show on the large three-deck ship. Merchant’s bazaar with lots of craft artisans selling unique items. Food court with beer garden and Pirate Pub. Hundreds of costumed characters, living history demonstrations, swordplay, battles, hands-on games of skill and a variety of street theater hilarity.
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The Big Art Event - 12:00 pm | Mangelsen’s Release your inner artist as you enjoy the day with many hands on art activities - and browse through our ‘Gallery’ of artwork by local artists we’ve created in our Framing Department. University of Nebraska Volleyball - 7:00 pm | University of NebraskaLincoln Athletics Saturday Night Show - 9:00 pm | Backline Improv Theatre
SUNDAY AUG 24 ›››MUSIC Jessica Errett and Tara Vaughan 2:00 pm | Free Soaring Wings Vineyard Music in the Park - 6:30 pm | Free Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park The Luke Polipnick Trio - 8:00 pm | The Side Door Lounge Luigi, Inc. - 9:00 pm | Free Mr. Toad’s Pub Omaha Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas - 9:00 pm | $8 The Slowdown Omaha Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas have arrived at last with their long awaited Instant Records debut, Secret Evil. The album sees the Detroit-based band serving up a brilliantly polyglot sonic stew equal parts rockabilly and surf pop, cabaret jazz and funky reggae, Latin psych and Gypsy punk.
›››MISC. Sunday Night Trivia - 7:00 pm | Two Fine Irishmen
MONDAY AUG 25 ›››MUSIC Mike Gurciullo and His Las Vegas Big Band - 8:00 pm | Free Ozone Lounge Sleepy Kitty - 9:00 pm | $5-$7 The Bourbon Theatre Sleepy Kitty began to take shape at the end of 2008, when Evan Sult, who was drumming for Chicago’s Bound Stems after an eight-year stint in late-90s alt-radio band Harvey Danger, met Paige Brubeck at a party. Projection Room is a gorgeous artpunk achievement by the band that sees them creating a cohesive new sound, while still including flagrant waves to their pop culture influences.
›››MISC. Open Mic - 9:00 pm | Barley Street Tavern Sign up at the bar after 7pm. Movie Night - 8:00 pm | Free The Hive Lounge Pub Quiz - 9:00 pm | Free The Slowdown Omaha
TUESDAY AUG 26 ›››MUSIC Tempo of Twilight - 6:00 pm | $3-$7 Lauritzen Gardens These family-friendly outdoor concerts provide a unique atmosphere to enjoy wonderful musical entertainment. Guests are allowed to bring chairs, food and beverages on Tempo of Twilight nights. Atmosphere - 7:00 pm | $25+ The Bourbon Theatre 17 years ago, hiphop act Atmosphere transformed Minneapolis into something else entirely: a nexus from which underground rap spiraled-out to the masses. And they’re still pushing the boundaries of what indie rap can mean. My Ticket Home - 8:00 pm | $10 The Slowdown Omaha Hailing from Columbus, Ohio, My Ticket Home has been
n The unique design of Enron by Lucy Prebble at the Omaha Community Playhouse blends the worlds of realism and absurdism. In one moment, the show is meticulously dissecting the ins and outs corporate corruption. The next moment, the Lehman Brothers are siamese twins, day traders are dancing around the stage, and raptors are walking around in business suits. Enron director Kimberly Faith Hickman said the key of the show’s design was balancing the two sides equally. “We spent a lot of time pouring over research of what the Enron building looked like and what the key players looked like,” she said. “We settled on designs based in realism but we took some creative license with things. It let’s us tell the story from a truthful aspect while also letting us have a lot of fun with our creativity.” For sound, Hickman said they looked at Enron at its peak in the late ’90s as this huge party that everyone wants to go to. “Of course they’re going to invest in this company. Of course they are going to idolize their charismatic and magnetic leader. That idea influenced a lot of the music choices. Lindsey Jones (sound designer) contributed a lot of original music. Jim Boggess contributed some original music and John Gibilisco contributed the rest of it. We have a montage of designers working on sound! It’s all falling into this party-like atmosphere.” For costumes, Hickman didn’t want to give any of Lydia Dawson’s design secrets away except for mentioning a very peculiar combination: Business suits and raves. “All of the designs help make the audience feel that much more pulled into the story. The designers are doing amazing work.” This is Hickman’s first time directing at the Playhouse. A freelance director based in Brooklyn, New York, she said her experience at OCP has been outstanding. “Everyone is so collaborative,” she said. “The spirit of theatre that you want to be surrounded by is definitely here. Theatre is a wierd, crazy business. It has the chance to get stressful at times because you are locked in a room with a group of people for the long haul. But if you are surrounded by people who believe in what they’re doing then you are going to have an amazing time. That’s what it’s been like here.” Enron runs through Sept. 14. For more information, visit www. omahaplayhouse.com. — William Grennan Cold Cream looks at theater in the metro area. Email information to firstname.lastname@example.org
stirring up mosh pits across the country since 2009. Open Mic Night - 9:00 pm | Free Venue 51
›››MISC. Lounge Against Humanity! - 7:00 pm | The Side Door Lounge
WEDNESDAY AUG 27 ›››MUSIC Polly O’Keary - 7:00 pm | $5 McKenna’s Blues Booze and BBQ
Open Mic Night - 8:00 pm | The Side Door Lounge
›››MISC. “Why Does Creativity Matter?” 6:00 pm | The Pizza Shoppe Collective Discussion about creativity and why it matters. Free event, with food and beverage available for purchase. Comedy Open Mic - 10:00 pm | Barley Street Tavern
158493 | Omaha Reader | 08/07/2014
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| THE READER |
8/18/14 12:42 PM
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
Nikki, Polly, Earl & More
Season from August 1st to September 1st
Fridays and Saturdays - 6:30 p.m. Sundays and Labor Day - 2:00 pm Simulcasting Horse Racing Year-Round. Bilingual Mutual Tellers
BY B.J. HUCHTEMANN
The races will be held in Agricultural Park 822 15th St. Columbus, NE 68601
ikki Hill is a roots-rock force of nature. The spirits of Wanda Jackson and Little Richard meet up in Hill’s remarkable vocals. Guitarist Matt Hill’s fretboard workouts give their sound extra punch. They hit Lincoln’s Zoo Bar Wednesday, Aug. 20, and rev up The 21st Saloon Thursday, Aug. 21, both shows 6-9 p.m. See nikkihillmusic.com. Polly O’Keary Polly O’Keary is best known locally for her bass work with Too Slim & The Taildraggers. O’Keary and her partner, drummer Tommy Cook, spent four years as the rhythm section for Too Slim. O’Keary had previously fronted her own band in Washington state. She is a three-time winner of the Washington Blues Society’s Female Vocalist of the Year honors as well as the Songwriter of the Year award plus other WBS awards and nominations. She and Cook have reformed Polly O’Keary & The Rhythm Method with guitarist Clint “Seattle Slim” Nonnemaker. See pollyokeary.com. The band plays Lincoln’s Zoo Bar Thursday, Aug. 21, 6-9 p.m. and gigs at McKenna’s next Wednesday, Aug. 27, 7 p.m. Earl & Them The marvelous Earl Cate is back with his band Earl & Them. Cate is one-half of the fabled Cate Brothers, whose show at The 21st Saloon earlier
this summer was one of the best of the year. Cate carries over his vocals, guitar work and some Cate Brothers’ repertoire to Earl & Them, which also features area native “Baby” Jason Davis on guitar. The group includes drummer Terry Cagle, who also drums for The Cate Brothers, played with The Band and is Levon Helm’s nephew. They play Lincoln’s Zoo Bar Friday, Aug. 22, 5-7 p.m. and Saturday, 6-9 p.m. See earlandthem.com. Zoo Bar The Zoo hosts Matt Cox’s Lincoln CD release party for Nishnabotna, Friday, Aug. 22, 9:30 p.m. Two big blues acts are back for early shows next week. Rick Estrin & The Nightcats is a quadruple threat of badass musicians who always deliver. They play Tuesday, Aug. 26, 6-9 p.m. The powerhouse combination of amazing vocalist Candye Kane and guitar star Laura Chavez hits the Zoo Wednesday, Aug. 27, 6-9 p.m. Hot Notes Due to a scheduling mix-up, Jason Elmore & Hoodoo Witch are not at McKenna’s Saturday, Aug. 23. Check Elmore’s music out at jasonelmore.net. The OEAA Summer Showcase happens in Benson this Friday and Saturday, Aug. 22-23, with over 50 bands at six venues. See the schedule at oea-awards. com. The Blues Society of Omaha presents the second preliminary round of the Nebraska Blues Challenge at Lincoln’s Zoo Bar Sunday, Aug. 24, 3 p.m. See Facebook.com/BluesSocietyofOmaha. ,
HOODOO is a weekly column focusing on blues, roots, Americana and occasional other music styles with an emphasis on live music performances. Hoodoo columnist B.J. Huchtemann is a Reader senior contributing writer and veteran music journalist who has covered the local music scene for nearly 20 years. Follow her blog at hoodoorootsblues.blogspot.com.
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
| THE READER |
LIFESTYLE COLUMN BY TIM MCMAHAN
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AUG 28 I 6:30PM
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AUG 29 I 7PM
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AUG 30 I 7PM
hen the Maha Music Festival organizers announced that this year’s headliner was going to be Death Cab for Cutie, I was relieved. Maha has a tradition of booking the most boring act of its annual day-long concert to play last, and this year appeared to be no exception. Last year it was Flaming Lips, whose black-confetti strobe-light-mountain visual spectacle was absorbed in the first five minutes of the set, leaving only Wayne Coyne and Co.’s droning, monotonous cacophony. Like Garbage and Matisyahu the prior years, the Lips was a band that, after just a few songs, you could confidently say, “Well, I’ve seen enough” and head to the gates guiltfree knowing you weren’t missing anything. Death Cab seemed to fall in this category, based on their track record. It’s been one boring show after another from the Seattle band for more than a decade, and this would simply be one more in a series, or so I thought. But as Ben Gibbard and his band tore into “We Laugh Indoors,” with its pivotal line “I loved you Guinevere,” I realized the massive Maha crowd (more than 7,000, according to one Maha board member) was in for a special evening. For once Death Cab was bringing something to the stage more powerful, more urgent than what they’ve recorded in the studio. Gibbard, usually a sad, sleepy mope, never sounded so intense. But it still wasn’t enough to keep me there. By 10:45, Maha had officially whipped my ass with its day’s worth of fine music and booze. It had been a long day. Unlike years past when I’d wandered into Stinson Park at mid-festival, this year I was in line when the gates opened at noon to see local post-punk legends Domestica light up the main stage. I’ve been following the husband-and-wife team of Jon Taylor and Heidi Ore since the early ’90s, back when they called themselves Mercy Rule (albeit with a different drummer). I would be goddamned if I was going to miss them kick off one of Nebraska’s largest music festivals, even though only a handful of people were there to see them. Cited as an influence by every successful early Saddle Creek Records band, you could argue Domestica deserved a better time slot, but you could make similar arguments for every band that played before 6 p.m. The fact was, Maha was loaded this year. Domestica was followed by strong sets from singer/ songwriter Matt Whipkey and his band, and the newest member of the Saddle Creek roster, Twinsmith. But the first surprise of the afternoon was M34n Str33t, a local hip-hop crew with Conny Franko a.k.a. Conchance on the mic. Prior to their set, they leaned a stack of handmade protest-style placards with sayings like “2 Good 2 Die Young” and “Keep Omaha Good Weird” along the
stage and invited fans to hoist them around the compound. Props. But they effectively reminded us all of the crew’s brutal, beat-heavy set every time someone got clubbed over the head with one like a baby seal. By 3 the forecast rain that never materialized was replaced with dense, soul-sucking humidity. After one song from Doomtree, I made my getaway to decompress for a couple hours, missing St. Joe punk band Radkey, but sacrifices had to be made. I returned to Stinson in time for the day’s main attraction (for me anyway): The Both — Aimee Mann and Ted Leo, together. By the time they got to the stage at around 4:30, the haze had shifted to skin-searing sun. Concertgoers ducked into whatever shade they could find, hiding beneath the park’s straggly trees. I scrunched down with the gaggle of sweaty fans who had pushed into the shadow of the main stage, The Both just a few yards away. Mann, dressed in a pleather rock ‘n’ roll power dress and fishnets, her long golden hair lying flat against her back, let us know the sun was burning the back of her legs in a waffle pattern. The heat took its toll on their energy level as Mann and Leo walked through the songs off their debut album — one mid-tempo ballad after another, punctuated by awkward between-song patter. Word had gotten out that “Voices Carry,” the ‘Til Tuesday ’80s mega-hit, was on their set list, but before they got to it, the trio did a kick-ass Leo number called “Bottled in Cork” (Tell the waitress I’ve fallen in love) that made my festival. Afterward came a timid version of “Voices Carry,” better left in the ’80s. The Both were followed by locals Envy Corp, a band I’d all but written off until this gig. I was talking to a musician and another music writer outside the VIP tent during their set and all three of us were like, “Who the f___ is this? These guys are pretty awesome.” It was back to the stage area to see Local Natives play the first festival-sounding set of the day, ramping up the crowd for the coming evening. But what really got the crowd pumped was rock-dance act Icky Blossoms. Their old favorites from their debut album were as good as ever, but their new stuff pointed toward a different, more punk-fueled sound. Edgier, despite their dresses. Then came indie folk rock act The Head and the Heart, who had sold out Red Rocks the night before with its lush, if not forgettable, music. Then came Death Cab serenading a crowd that filled the park. As good as the music was, the Maha Music Festival has matured into something beyond its music. It’s become an annual must-attend event thanks to the accouterments that surround it and its precise team of 300 volunteers determined to make sure every single person has a good time. It’s a tribute to the four caballeros who founded the festival way back in 2009 and are “stepping back” from Maha next year for a well-deserved break. Can Maha continue its momentum without them? We’ll find out next year. ,
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OVER THE EDGE is a weekly column by Reader senior contributing writer Tim McMahan focused on culture, society, music, the media and the arts. Email Tim at email@example.com. And be sure to check out his blog at Lazy-i.com
over the edge
| THE READER |
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
T H E WO R L D G O N E F R E A K Y B Y C H U C K S H E P H E R D W I T H I L LU S T R AT I O N S B Y T O M B R I S C O E
Think Your Own Last Flight Was Unpleasant?
he May 28 US Airways flight from Los Angeles to Philadelphia had to be diverted to Kansas City after a passenger’s service dog did what dogs do, in the aisle, twice (an hour apart). One passenger used the terms “lingering smell,” “dry heaving” and “throwing up” in describing the situation. (2) On a recent (perhaps July) Delta flight from Beijing to Detroit, a Chinese couple apparently nonchalantly laid down paper on their toddler’s seat and encouraged him to address his bowels’ needs despite numerous pleas from nearby passengers to take him to the restroom. According to Chinese news reports, social media sites erupted in criticism of the family for its embarrassing behavior.
Democracy in Action Steve Grossman, Massachusetts’ state treasurer, who is running for governor, performed heroically at a candidate forum in March. The Boston Globe reported that Grossman “fervently answered questions on everything from transgender rights (to) sex education (and) issues facing (the) aging members of the (gay/transgender) community” while simultaneously passing a kidney stone (which most victims rate as “level 10” pain -- the highest on the medical scale, described by some as comparable to childbirth). -- Steve Wiles gathered only 28 percent of the vote in his North Carolina state senate race in May after revelations that he -- lately an opponent of gay rights -- was until about four years ago a gay male who worked as the female impersonator “Mona Sinclair” at a gay nightclub in Winston-Salem. As recently as
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
| THE READER |
April, however (three weeks before a newspaper’s revelation), Wiles was categorically denying that he used to be Mona Sinclair. “That’s not me,” he said. “That’s him,” said a man who worked with him at the club. Said the club’s then-co-owner: “I have no ax to grind against him. I just think he’s a liar.” -- The Alaskan government is scrambling to fulfill its obligation to welcome native communities’ votes on a state tax resolution in August. That means paying translators (at up to $50 a hour) to set out the measure for communities using the languages Yup’ik, Inupiak, Siberian Yupik, Koyukon Athabascan and Gwich’in Athabascan. (The tax measure must also be available on audio -- for those communities that rely on the “oral tradition.”) For example, the yes-orno tax question in Yup’ik is “Una-qaa alerquun ciuniurumanrilli?”
Not My Fault Tom Lakin is challenging State Farm in a St. Clair County, Illinois, courtroom, claiming that the sexual abuse he was convicted of was “unintentional” and that therefore his homeowners’ insurance ought to have covered any claims by the victim. (State Farm, and other insurers, generally pay out for “negligent” events.) He said he had no idea that serving minors alcohol and drugs and encouraging them to have sex with each other would lead to their later sexual exploitation by other adults. The Redneck Chronicles (1) Has to Be Tied Down: A man was hospitalized in Shreveport, Louisiana, in June after being carried away by a wind gust as he held onto a mattress in the back of a pickup truck on Interstate 49. He suffered road burn and fractures. (2) Jenna Ketcham, 25, was arrested in Sebastian, Florida, in July after exacting a bit of revenge against an ex-boyfriend, whom she encountered squiring another woman in
COPYRIGHT 2014 CHUCK SHEPHERD. Visit Chuck Shepherd daily at NewsoftheWeird. blogspot.com or NewsoftheWeird.com. Send Weird News to WeirdNewsTips@yahoo.com or P.O. Box 18737, Tampa, FL 33679. Illustrations by Tom Briscoe (smallworldcomics.com).
his pickup truck. According to police, Ketcham hit the man in the face and the genitals, and emptied his “dip spit” cup on him.
The New World Order Among the foods “you wouldn’t even eat if trapped on a desert island” in a May London Daily Mirror feature: canned cheeseburger (Germany), canned whole chicken (Sweet Sue brand of USA), canned peanut butter and jelly sandwich (Mark One Foods of USA), canned bacon (Hungary), Squeez Bacon (in a plastic jar like ketchup, from Vilhelm Lilleflask of Sweden), whole peeled lamb tongues (New Zealand) and Elephant Dung Beer (from excreted coffee beans by Japan’s Sankt Gallen). Also mentioned: Casu Marzu (cheese containing live maggots that the food’s few fans swear make its taste irresistible -- and which News of the Weird reported in 2000). -- Update: The first “pheromone party” is said to have been staged in New York City in 2010, but the concept was revived recently in London, with men and women bringing three-each used, unwashed, un-fragranced T-shirts in plastic bags as the price of admission (along with the equivalent of $25). Guests sniff the coded bags one after another until genes kick in and signal the sniffer that a certain shirt belongs to Mr. or Ms. Right. At that point, the sniffer projects a cellphone selfie on the wall, and whoever brought that shirt sees the sniffer, at which time things return to normal, i.e., deciding if the sniffer is sufficiently good-looking. -- The Italian news agency ANSA reported in July that Italy’s San Vittore prison in Milan is scheduling regular “happy hour” socials for its female inmates -- catered, with alcohol, and with “external” guests welcomed, to the displeasure of the prison guards’ union. The deputy director of the prison service was quoted by ANSA as approving the events,
leading union representatives to complain to the ministry of Justice.
Least Competent Law Enforcement (1) The Clay County (Florida) Sheriff ’s Office twice this year arrested the wrong Ashley Chiasson -- in January (for grand theft) and in May (writing bad checks) -despite three years, five inches, 20 pounds and distinctive middle names separating them (Ashley Odessa, the suspect, vs. Ashley Nicole, the innocent victim). (“Odessa” spent five weeks in jail before deputies admitted their mistake.) (2) James Jordan Sr. died in Brooklyn, New York, in 2006, but NYPD officers have barged into his family’s home 12 times since then -- four in 2014 alone -- seeking him on various charges. His widow, Karen Jordan, even taped his death certificate to the front door, but that failed to deter the officers, one of whom shouted during a recent raid that they “know” Jordan is hiding inside somewhere. Karen recently filed a lawsuit against NYPD for the raids, which include “turning out drawers, looking in closets, harassing my children.” The Pervo-American Community (1) Among the important news learned from the July indictment of Raymond Black, 61, in Brentwood, New Hampshire, for sex crimes involving girls aged 11 and 13: The going rate for a man who wants preteen girls to kick him in the genitals is as much as $100, which is the amount Black allegedly offered them for various sexual favors. (2) Everything was completely consensual, Ms. B.J. Geardello, 53, assured officers in Ohio County, West Virginia, who caught her taking a stroll along U.S. Highway 40 at 9:30 a.m. on July 29 -- she in purple nightgown leading her nude boyfriend, 56, by a leash, on all fours, hooded, with his ankles bound. Prosecutors were unsure whether to file charges. ,
Men’s Soccer Friday, Aug 22nd, 7:00 PM vs. Friday, Aug 29th, 7:00 PM vs.
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| THE READER |
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
T H E
G I V E R
T H E
ail gloriously, if you must fail. Go down swinging for the fences, punchdrunk and confident you’re making something truly awesome that people will love, even if it winds up a steaming pile of poodoo we mock. I respect the noble fool, the proud creator of disaster who clearly put everything into a creative vision beloved by only himself. I have no respect for the people who made The Giver, a movie about the importance of emotions made by people who seem to have none. Lois Lowry’s award-winning book has its fingerprints all over the modern spate of dystopian young adult fiction. Thus, you’d think its adaptation would have been handled with some measure of care and not the “eh, whatever” approach director Phillip Noyce and writers Michael Mitnick and Robert B. Weide took. The film opens some indeterminate time after some indeterminate apocalyptic event. From now on, if you don’t say what that apocalyptic event is, I’m going to start inserting my own.
Film Streams at the Ruth Sokolof Theater 14th & Mike Fahey Street (formerly Webster Street) More info & showtimes 402.933.0259 · filmstreams.org Facebook | Twitter | Instagram: @filmstreams
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
W O R S T
K I N D
Set some time after “The War of Frog Flatulence,” society purged all emotions and memories from its people. From birth, everyone is made to be as equal as possible, down to physical characteristics and experience. It’s basically socialism as understood by Glen Beck. One person, “The Receiver of Memories,” is tasked with remembering all the bad stuff (and good stuff ) that came before so that he or she can advise a council, led by the Chief Elder (Meryl Streep). Jonas (Brenton Thwaites), who just turned 18, is chosen to be the next Receiver, which turns the current owner of that title into “The Giver” (Jeff Bridges). As expected, the emotions and memories awaken Jonas, so he tries to bring down the whole society by going sledding with a baby. For serious, that’s the climax. I hope for the sake of the three young leads (Thwaites, Odeya Rush and Cameron Monaghan) their wretched, tone-deaf, leaden performances were a result of poor direction from Noyce. If not, they should begin rehearsing for “extra” roles on “Dog
First-Run Films A Most Wanted Man First-Run (R) Dir. Anton Corbijn. Through Thursday, August 28
Featuring one of the last performances by the late Philip Seymour Hoffman.
Boyhood First-Run (R)
Dir. Richard Linklater. Though Thursday, September 4 Believe the hype — this is the film event of 2014!
| THE READER |
B A D
R YA N
S Y R E K
with a Blog.” Streep and Bridges are great, in the 1015 minutes they get to spend with each other. You almost see the fire in their eyes the minute they realize they are finally standing in a room with someone else capable of “acting.” Potentially more irritating is the way the film violates its own rules with such reckless abandon. Nobody can feel anything, until the plot needs them to. Nobody can remember anything, until it makes for a nice dramatic exchange of dialogue. It would be positively maddening if the movie were worth caring about in any way, shape and or form. The Giver is blasé filmmaking at its finest. The underlying promise of the original work isn’t shat upon, it’s just ignored. This could have been an actual “young adult” film, letting preteens know that the conflicting waves of emotion they’re about to receive are worth it. Instead, it’s a movie where a holographic cameo by Taylor Swift isn’t the worst part. ,
Rich Hill First-Run
Dir. Tracy Droz Tragos & Andrew Droz Palermo. Starts Friday, August 22 Tells the story of a Missouri town, one of heartbreak and hope, through the lives three boys “Offering a sobering rebuke to pullyourself-up-by-your-bootstraps rhetoric.” -- A.A. Dowd, The AV Club
Coming Soon Calvary First-Run The Trip to Italy First-Run
GRADE = D
n For years, one rivalry has dwarfed all others. No, it’s not The Chicago Bears and The Green Bay Packers or Right and Left Twix. It’s “readers” versus “watchers,” as in those who (gasp) read books and those who (wisely) see movies. Apparently, and this is news to me, you can do both. So says Aksarben Cinema and The Bookworm Omaha. They are partnering up for a book club that culminates in a movie premiere. I don’t understand how these things could possibly join together, but apparently the idea is that you read three different dystopian young adult novels and then watch The Maze Runner on opening night. The Bookworm will have discounted books for club members, and discussions will take place at Aksarben. They’re going to talk about books at a movie theater. My world is crumbling! n Aksarben Cinema not only loves reading, but loves people who teach reading (or anything else for that matter). Seeing as how Nebraska ranks 48th in teachers’ salaries, Aksarben decided to help them by instituting a discount for any educator! This includes faculty or staff of a primary or secondary school, university or college, or a teacher of a home schooled student. Eligible educators can show school ID to get $2 off tickets, 7 days a week. Sorry you’re vastly underpaid, teachers, but at least you can watch some cool movies! n The Internet has made movie rumor mongering into this swirling vortex of manufactured non-stories. Case in point, a headline this week on several sites read “Jackie Chan Approached About Rush Hour 4.” That literally means nothing. Being “approached” can be almost any mention of a film to a participant. Case in point, I was the person who approached Chan about Rush Hour 4. My approach was, “If you ever make Rush Hour 4, I will start telling people you don’t do your own stunts.” —Ryan Syrek Cutting Room provides breaking local and national movie news … complete with added sarcasm. Send any relevant information to firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out Ryan on Movieha!, a weekly half-hour movie podcast (movieha.libsyn.com/ rss), catch him on the radio on CD 105.9 (cd1059.com) on Fridays at around 7:30 a.m. and on KVNO 90.7 (KVNO.org) at 8:30 a.m. on Fridays and follow him on Twitter (twitter.com/ thereaderfilm).
Forever Young Supported by Lincoln Financial Foundation. The Parent Trap 1961 August 23, 24, 28, 30, 31 & September 4 The ultimate story of kids outsmarting adults. Starring Hayley Mills & Hayley Mills! Kids’ tickets just $2.50!
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| THE READER |
AUG. 21 - 27, 2014
Located at the corner of Saddlecreek & Davenport
N E P O NOW
specials Grand opening
at this store only.
time only. *
Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, or Mountain Dew • 12 12-oz. cans • All flavors • Plus deposit fee and tax where applicable
Nestle Pure Life Bottle Water • 28 - 16.9 oz. bottles • Limit 5 per customer
Event Dates: Wednesday, August 20 - Sunday, August 24, 2014. Prices and items available only at STORE# 4139 –360 N. Saddlecreek Rd • Omaha, NE 68131 for the effective dates listed. Items identified as being available in limited quantities do not qualify for Rain Checks or offers of substitute items. In all cases, we reserve the right to limit quantities to normal retail purchases or one-per-customer or household, and to exclude dealers. The “spark” design and Walmart are marks and/or registered marks of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. ©2014 Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., Bentonville, AR. Printed in the USA. Available while supplies last. Plus taxes and bottle deposit where applicable. *Quantities limited; while supplies last; valid at this location only.
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