Category Archives: George W. Bush

Hot Air

Peace

Huzzah for Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teenager who took a bullet to the head for the unforgivable sin of wanting to go to school. Malala today was announced as this year’s Nobel Peace Prize co-winner.

Malala

She Is Malala

The local Taliban in Pakistan’s Swat Valley, where Malala lives, sent a hitman out to find her one day when she was headed to school. She’d already gained prominence as an activist for allowing Muslim girls to attend school in the region. She had to be stopped, the Taliban decided. The gunman boarded her school bus, asked for her by name, and proceeded to fire three slugs from his Colt .45 at her.

She survived the attack somehow and then became known worldwide as she recovered. A German internet and satellite news channel called her “the most famous teenager in the world.” She wrote a bestselling book entitled I Am Malala.

The youngest Nobel Prize winner ever, Malala continues to press for educational access for Muslim women. The Taliban, I might remind you, exists at its present strength mainly because President George W. Bush and his neo-con cronies shifted American military might from Afghanistan and Pakistan to Iraq for the war they always lusted for.

It’s a safe bet Georgy-Boy will never win the Nobel Peace Prize.

Who Was That Guy?

Comes October and memories of the Cuban missile crisis. I was too young to remember much of it save for the ghastly, worried look on my mother’s face for the duration of the two-week affair.

I did say at one point, “I hate Castro.” She told me I shouldn’t hate anyone even if their actions are hateful.

I also recall seeing newspaper headlines referring to “Russ.”

Headline

I Hated Russ

I thought Russ was a guy. And a bad guy, to boot. I hated him as well, only I didn’t tell my mother about it.

How did headline writers come up with the idea of calling the Soviet Union “Russ”? Yeah, I know, it’s a diminutive of Russia, but still, why Russ? USSR is pretty much the same width as Russ so it can’t be a space thing.

Russ. Weird.

Boom!

Not too long before the Cuban missile crisis, the Mob blew up a restaurant across the street from my childhood home.

It was the middle of the night and I was sleeping in the same room with my sister Charlotte who was perhaps 19. The boom was deafening and then there was the sound of shattering glass all around the house. The tinkle of glass continue up the block, house by house, in quick succession as the blast wave travelled outward.

Every window in my fam.’s house was blown out. We’d had what would now be considered gorgeous, priceless, leaded stained glass windows in our bungalow. At the time, though, such old fashioned things were considered cheap and undesirable. My parents always talked about saving up enough money so they could get those windows replaced. The Mob took care of that for them.

1621 N. Natchez Ave.

The Bungalow I Grew Up In

Every figurine my mother had was blown off its sconce as well. We could hardly take a step without crunching a shard of glass or ceramic. We all dashed outside to watch the restaurant burn. As the neighbors gathered, all of them in their slippers and robes, one woman shrieked, “I thought it was the atom bomb! Thank god it wasn’t!”

Wow. How big must the atom bomb be, I thought, to be worse than this?

The next morning, an insurance agent from the restaurant sat at our dining room table and wrote out a check for all new windows. My father held the check in his hand and gazed at it lovingly after the insurance man left. “Here’s our new windows,” he said and he and my mother laughed.

The restaurant? It was quickly rebuilt and became a hangout for Outfit guys. None of the neighbors ever really mentioned the incident again. It was Mob business and it was never good policy to stick one’s nose too deeply into it.

Playing Our Parts

One of two Norman Rockwell paintings dealing with baseball was called “Tough Call” (1949). In it, the umpires study a threatening sky, trying to decide whether to call the game or not. Behind them, the managers of the Pirates and the Dodgers put on a show for each other: the Pirates manager, whose team is ahead, is shivering, about to catch his death of pneumonia, hoping to convince one and all the game should be halted; the Dodgers skipper is grinning in the lone ray of sunshine, his cap off. Look at this gorgeous, clearing day, he’s surely saying. Naturally, he wants to game to continue.

Rockwell

Bottom Of The Sixth

Rockwell’s always been fancied as America’s painter. We could do a lot worse. Rockwell’s scene construction and geometric blocking, featuring the classic triangle delineating his directional movement, have been compared to those of the great Renaissance artists. Plus, his subject matter was as soaring and mythical as any painted by Titian, Bellini, or Veronese.

The only difference was, their visions were directed upward, to the heavens, whereas Rockwell’s were anchored firmly on this holy land’s Main Street. In either case, the worlds they portrayed did not exist, and for that matter never existed, except in the artists’ minds.

Anyway, I bring up Norman Rockwell for the two managers he painted. They’re both looking at the exact same day, the same sky, the same clouds. The breeze on their skin is the same temperature. The rain drops plunk equally on each man’s cap bill.

Yet, to prove their opposing points, they act as if they’re on opposite sides of the Earth.

You couldn’t find a better representative of what passes for today’s political discourse. There are no more conversations, no more contemplations, no more compromises. There is only good and evil. I’m right, you’re wrong, and thus it will always be.

A report I heard on the radio this morning (sorry, I can’t find a link to it just yet) got me to thinking about this. It seems the rare earth elements that make up much of our hybrid cars’ batteries are, naturally, in super short supply.

As I recall, a metals expert says that China is the world’s biggest supplier of those elements right now. If the US wants to stabilize their prices as well as put in a strategic backup supply of the metals, it’ll have to mine for them. Yet, the expert says, those who howl the loudest for electric-powered cars are the same people who howl the loudest whenever someone wants to dig a mine. You can’t have it both ways, the expert says.

Rare Earth Metals

[Clockwise from top center]

Praseodymium, Cerium, Lanthanum, Neodymium, Samarium, & Gadolinium

Which makes sense.

We all pretty much agree that mining is a destructive activity. What we don’t agree on is the fact that we need to do it. We need iron. We need coal. We need uranium. We need Europium, Holmium, and Lutetium.

Mining in any form has become a dirty word to a certain subset of the citizenry, as dirty, say, as GMOs, nuclear power, and other current bugbears of the progressive set.

Mining company execs say stripping the topography of flora and topsoil is the greatest thing in the world. Ecologists say it’s the scourge of the planet. Like the two managers looking at the same sky, they see different things.

Chinese Lutetium Mine

A Lutetium Mine In China

Everything’s black and white. Muslims are sweethearts; Muslims are cutthroat terrorists. Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin were angels; Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin were vicious thugs. The unemployed are victims of a stacked deck economy; the unemployed are lazy.

Everybody sees everybody else as the enemy.

We’re going to have to live with some mining while simultaneously curbing the abuses of mining companies. We’re going to have to eat GMO foods while making sure Monsanto doesn’t take over the world.    We (those of us who consider ourselves liberals or progressives) have got to accept that Republicans, fundamentalist Christians, free marketeers, gun lovers, anti-abortionists, anti-contraceptionists, creationists, people who hate paying taxes, those who want to privatize schools and roads and the police all live in this land. And, of course, those folks have to live with us.

This great divide, this abyss between the Right and the Left wherein each side thinks the other is out to destroy the United States of America can only last for so long before we start firing guns at each other. In fact, that may already have begun, here and there, in hot spots around the nation.

That Norman Rockwell, he really knew America.

Hot Air

Crime Of The Century

So, al Qaeda and its brethren are taking over Iraq right before our very eyes.

Nice, huh?

ISIS Commandos

Iraq’s Nightmare (Photo: Reuters)

Looks like those +125,000 dead Iraqis as well as 4400 dead US soldiers gave their lives for nothing.

Nothing, friends. Not a thing.

Did I mention we’d spent up to $4 trillion USD on that decade-long slaughter?

All because Georgy-Boy Bush and his coatholders and co-conspirators scared the bejesus out of us with talk of mushroom clouds and poison gas attacks — that weren’t going to come because bad old Saddam Hussein was nowhere near possessing such weapons (the nukes) or having the ability to deliver them (the gas) to New York City, Ellettsville, Wrigleyville and points west.

We fought that pointless, bullshit war because the Bush administration — which hadn’t been elected by a majority of American voters, in case you’ve forgotten — believed it was its god-given duty to remake the Middle East so that multinational engineering firms and oil companies could more easily and happily extract dollars therefrom. The fact that Georgy-Boy’s Poppy had not delivered said hegemony to the global plutocracy also was a motivating factor; the Bush family’s Big Dick legacy was preserved, thanks to the rivers of blood Shock and Awe produced.

Bush

Believe Us, America

Sadly, our holy land must reconcile itself to the reality that we have committed yet another crime against humanity.

Not that terribly many of us care.

Hide Your Hate, America

And speaking of America’s crimes against humanity, we did our best to rectify a big one 50 years ago this summer. On July 2, 1964, President Lyndon Baines Johnson signed the comprehensive Civil Rights Act into law.

July 2, 1964

LBJ Gives Martin Luther King The Signing Pen (Photo: AP)

Throughout the first half of the year, though, the US Senate wrestled over the bill and, quite frankly, its passage was far from assured. Republican senators from southern states filibustered from late March through early June to prevent a vote. Senator Robert Byrd (D-West Virgina) alone filibustered for more than fourteen hours on June 10th. Before that, Senator Richard Russell (R-Georgia), told his colleagues, “We will resist to the bitter end any measure or any movement which would have a tendency to bring about social equality and intermingling and amalgamation of the races in our states.”

A small group of senators from both parties crafted a compromise bill that eventually passed, leading to the Johnson signing.

The bill, it should be noted, forbids discrimination by federal and state agencies against people on account of their race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. It also banned discrimination against those groups by businesses that provide “public accommodation” — hotels, for instance, and restaurants. The bill called for an end to unequal application of laws and eligibility requirements in voter registration as well as in school admissions.

Imagine that respected senators could stand in loud and forceful opposition to those ideals and not be pilloried. Things are different today, of course. People have learned how to hide such bigotry behind code words and misdirection.

At least we don’t tolerate blatant assholery anymore.

Hot Air

George W. Bush, Non-Person

When folks began blaming Prez Barack H. O. for everything up to and including rainy days, I and people like me wrung our hands and moaned about the unfairness of it all. I recall one guy howling in 2010 because gas prices had gone up since Barry was inaugurated in 2009. I told him I wasn’t aware that Ob. had been sworn in as our new dictator with the power to decree gas prices and he looked at me as if I were a silly, naive child.

It’s been more than five years now since The Man from Kenya has taken over our holy land. In that time, the BHO-haters of the USA have advanced the twin notions that Obama is both a crushing tyrant and a wimpy, spineless pantywaist. The inherent contradiction therein seems not to bother Michelle’s husband’s loathers.

By now, of course, all the folderol over Obama has become a joke. When O. gets blamed for the collapse of western civilization…

Internet Meme

… the sane among us now simply titter.

I tittered when I got wind of an exchange between a caller and Rush Limbaugh on his radio psychosis-fest yesterday. The caller said she was the mother of a firefighter who died in the 9/11 attacks. Yesterday, of course, the National September 11 Memorial Museum was dedicated. The woman was highly offended that former Pres. Geo. W. Bush wasn’t in attendance for the ceremony. Natch, BHO, NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo, former NYC mayors Michael Bloomberg and Rudolph Giuliani, and a huge gang of other big shots made the scene and implied how, without each and every one of them, other 9/11s would have occurred every half hour since that infamous day in 2001.

But the man who was in charge of the nation when the hijacked planes struck was nowhere to be found. He’d been invited, according to ceremony organizers, but declined to attend due to a “scheduling conflict,’ which we all know is code for something, anything, else.

Bush/Card

George W. Bush (With Andrew Card), September 11, 2001

I won’t speculate why GWB didn’t show, mainly because I don’t care. The less I see of him, the better I like it. But those who view Barack Obama as the harbinger of the Apocalypse know why he didn’t come. The Kenyan ordered it.

Read this snippet of transcript from that woman caller to Limbaugh:

CALLER: Where the hell was President Bush? Why wasn’t his name even mentioned?

RUSH: You know, I didn’t have the sound up when I watched that, not much of it.  I had it on TV.

CALLER:  Well, his name wasn’t mentioned. He wasn’t there, that’s for sure.  But his name wasn’t even mentioned.

RUSH:  This is the 911 Museum, right?

CALLER:  Yes.

RUSH:  The dedication to the museum?  Well, I saw Governor Cuomo there.

CALLER:  He should have been the first person to speak, or at least his name mentioned.  I’m very upset.  I lost a son there.

RUSH:  I have to say, she’s got a point here.  I have to say, you’ve got a point, Marie.  Here’s who I saw.  I saw Mayor Doomberg, I saw Mayor de Blasio, I saw Governor Cuomo, but you’re right.  I didn’t hear anything.  Did they mention him?

CALLER:  You saw everybody but President Bush. Even his name wasn’t mentioned.

They bat this around for a while until, mirabile dictu, Limbaugh informs the woman that Bush’s office released a statement saying he chose not to be there. Of course, he could have told her that the moment she mentioned Bush’s absence, but that would cut off the possibility that she could complain that Obama et al are trying to turn the former prez into a non-person, as any good Stalinist might.

Limbaugh then goes on to say what a sweetheart Bush has been since he left the Oval Office. He’s stayed out of the public eye by choice and refuses to criticize Obama for turning our holy land into a massive gay sex and abortion orgy. He also speculates that BHO himself prob. won’t be so circumspect when his term is up. But wait, Limbaugh even has his doubts that Barry will indeed leave office:

RUSH: …When I heard that Barack Obama plans to live in Washington after his term of office expires — if it does (ahem) — that told me a lot.  No president stays in town.  They all decamp. They all leave. They go back somewhere.  But Obama is gonna stay there, and there’s one reason why.

Hehe! Ol’ Rush is a’scared that Barack Hussein Obama will appoint himself Emir-in-Chief and Caliph of Kenya, Palestine, and America-for-Life well before the 2016 election.

Limbaugh

Running Scared

I’m sort of disappointed that Limbaugh’s worst fears won’t be realized. Because if Obama does take over the nation as dictator, I’m sure the first thing he’ll do is throw folks like Limbaugh and his callers into a mental institution, where they belong.

Santa Maria

That ship found in the ocean near Haiti, the one a certain Indiana University researcher thinks might be Columbus’s Santa Maria, is most assuredly stuck in a pile of muck.

And I’m not talking about the slimy gunk one can find on the bottom of a large body of water. Old Cristofaro Colombo of Genoa is hardly a hero to a lot of folks these days.

Columbus opened the New World to continuous European trade and migration, sure. That’s why pretty much every big city in this holy land throws him a parade each October. Then again, some cities are ixnay-ing the whole Columbus celebration.

Back in 1992 the city of Berkeley, California, replaced its Columbus Day festivities with those marking what they called Indigenous People’s Day. The idea being Columbus and his Euro-trailers brought with them disease, a propensity to commit genocide, forced conversions to Christianism, and other horrors. The peoples who lived in the New World, a huge and extremely varied population, suffered mightily under these ills. So Berkeley decided to champion the victims rather than the victor.

The Minneapolis city council not four weeks ago also voted to celebrate Indigenous People’s Day, the same day Columbus Day is celebrated, meaning, I suppose, that town is interested in pushing the Genoan into the attic with all the rest of American history’s relics.

As for the rest of the nation’s pop., Columbus seems to be becoming less and less an American idol with each passing year. It’s not that Murricans are suddenly becoming cognizant of his less than savory proclivities (Columbus took hundreds of natives as slaves, stole gold and, after being named Viceroy of the Indies, ruled with a sadistic fist) but that we really don’t care much about anything that happened before The Big Bang Theory (the TV show, not the beginning of the known Universe).

In any case, whatever IU’s Charles Beeker finds when he and his team dive into the warm waters of the Caribbean and inspect the reputed Santa Maria remains, the results will cause a mini-firestorm of controversy. Say he brings up a sextant and it’s put on display. You think there won’t be scads of protests surrounding the exhibit?

Beeker

Charles Beeker

Beeker, an underwater archeologist who’s head of IU’s Office of Underwater Science and Academic Diving Program, is working to put together a gang of scuba divers. He’s in a rush to get to the wreckage because, apparently, scavengers are beginning to loot the site. What’s thought be a cannon already has gone missing. Beeker plans to work with the Haitian gov’t to set up a protected area around the site to prevent further manhandling of the stuff.

From a research and academic standpoint, Beeker’s quest will no doubt be invaluable. It may, though, be a public relations nightmare.

Hot Air

Bush ≠ Hitler

As always, I’m here to help.

The interwebs have been chock-full of news and opinion about former Prez Geo. W. Bush’s art gallery opening yesterday.

Some 30 paintings done by Dubya are part of a new exhibit in his presidential library in — where else? — Dallas, Texas.

Y’know, the same Dallas that essentially defined the big, exciting, we-love-the-rich 1980s in that eponymous soap opera about those lovable, plutocratic Ewings? Yeah, there couldn’t be a better locale for the Bush Prez Libr.

Bush, apparently, has been spending his time throwing paint on canvas, making pix of world leaders like Tony Blair, Vlad Putin, and, natch, Bush’s own daddy-o.

Karzai by Bush

Hamid Karzai By Bush

I suppose it’s all cool. I’m always in favor of people doing creative things in their lives, no matter how young or old they are, nor if they started a tragic war with a Southwest Asian country over  some phonus-bolonus a-bombs and now that country exists in a never-ending state of violent chaos.

Good for Georgie-boy, I say.

Only loads o’folks are picking the low-hanging fruit off the politico-allegorical tree and making the all-too-obvious comparison between our dear former leader and a certain mid-20th Century dictator with a goofy mustache and one ball (or, so said one popular song during WWII.)

Diligent students of history may recall that before Adolf Hitler embarked on world conquest and Final Solutions, he was an aspiring artist who longed to be accepted into the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. Hitler painted scads of pix, none of which was good enough to get him in the school.

Hitler Painting

We Wish You Luck In Your Future Endeavors, Herr Hitler

It’s been said young Ad was so put out by the snub that he decided instead to take over Germany. Which seems a tad simplistic, as justifications go for the ensuing actions of history’s most reviled man. But I’m not here to referee that historical argument.

It’s this one I’m throwing the yellow flag at: A lot of folks on my side of the fence spent all eight years of the Bush II presidency comparing him to Hitler or flat-out calling him Hitler. And now that the two have painting in common, those same folks are calling Bushey-boy Hitler again.

Bush/Hitler/Dogs

They Both Had Dogs, The Fiends!

Sheesh. It’s as if it had been revealed that Bush fils is missing a gonad.

So, my more rabid confreres who believe — as I do — that Bush the Younger was this holy land’s worst-ever president need me to reel them back into reality.

George W. Bush was not Adolf Hitler. Nor did he do much of anything even remotely resembling Hitler’s own actions. Bush’s crimes were his and his alone. Bushey-boy did not institute a program of genocide against the citizens of his own country. He did not annex sovereign nations. He did not oversee the government take-over of certain key industries. He did not declare himself one with the State. And, I’m fairly confident in asserting this last point, he had a pair.

Sure, George W. was a no-good son of a bitch. I’d love to see him and his creepy fellow mobsters, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, get hauled before some kind of court of justice for their crimes.

But — I repeat — he wasn’t Hitler. Got that? Good. Now, let’s move on.

Questions

Did you notice (as I just did) that I referred to the German Fuehrer by a sort of cutesy diminutive in the section above?

Ad?

Am I the first human, post-1939, to do that?

And, if so, what in the hell is wrong with me?

Chill, Babies

Scientists — you know, those folks who actually know things — tell us that the Yellowstone “supervolcano” isn’t due to blow anytime soon.

In fact, says a geologist who has studied the formation, the Y-stone blower is still petering out from its last pop some 640,000 years ago. It hasn’t even begun welling up in preparation for another series of blasts, a process that could take a million or two years before we’d all have to start wearing hardhats.

I mention this because the interwebs are buzzing in some precincts about said caldera in the western US. We’re about to be blown to bits — or at least covered with volcanic ash over a large portion of this holy land, goes the hysteria.

Much of the hullabaloo began when a video of bison seemingly “fleeing” the park went viral. The “explanation” given with the vid held that bison, like the rest of nature’s wonderful cartoon character creatures, have a sixth sense about volcanoes and they’re trying to get out of Yellowstone National Park ASAP.

Not explained is why the beasts would be trying to escape the confines of a Department of Interior establishment, the confines of which, presumably, they would not be terribly well-acquainted with. Especially since the jigglings they’re purportedly sensing would be spread over an enormous area that dwarfs the park itself. So where are they running off to?

But, what do scientists know?

 

Unseasonably Warm Hot Air

Comet, Heal Thyself

Too bad about Comet ISON, no? Goddamned Obamacare.

Comet ISON

R.I.P.

Zero From The ‘Aughts

Perhaps this is obvious to everybody else, but it just occurred to me this morning as I washed the dishes that the first decade of this 21st Century really and truly sucked.

Dig: The decade/century/millennium began with a double whammy of slam. The great tech bubble blew up, costing countless entitled middle- and upper-middle class white computer geeks their previously privileged spots atop the human pyramid. And a lot of middle class investors lost their little all after betting that tech stocks would carry them through their dotage. Then there was the non-election election of George W. Bush, a putsch pushed along by Supreme Court justices installed by his daddy-o and their patron saint, Ronald Reagan.

The next year, our holy land’s spies and spooks fell asleep at their CCTV security consoles and allowed a couple of dozen lunatic fundamentalist religionists to stage the scariest disaster movie scenes ever seen in New York City and Washington, DC.

What followed, natch, was an overreaction of monumental proportions as this holy land turned into a fighting, spying, hating-on-ragheads military machine. Now, I’d bet more money is spent on making sure American air travelers don’t sneak bottles of mouthwash onto airplanes than is earmarked for useless things like school libraries.

Meanwhile, Americans were urged by their popularly un-elected president to go back to shopping, chop-chop, just to show the world how much we love, love, love freedom. And Americans fell into line, buying anything and everything, including TV screens wide enough to display the entirety of the Grand Canyon. We Americans got so giddy pissing our hard-earned dough away that we began looking upon our happy homes not as safe harbors from the cruel world and anchors of our communities but as ostentatious, in-your-face ATMs-slash-McMansions. We bought and sold houses the way teenaged boys trafficked in baseball cards in the 1980s.

And then that bubble popped, leading to the greatest economic collapse since the Greatest Economic Collapse.

But wait — before that, the president, who, I might remind you, had been elected by a minority of voters, told us Saddam Hussein’s Iraq was perhaps a half hour away from decorating the skies above our greatest cities with pretty and colorful mushroom clouds. To prove his assertion, he sent out his minions and assistants to tell us and the world blah, blah, blah, blah — none of which had a whit to do with Iraq’s capacity to build nuclear weapons, and so we promptly fell into line and gave the Prez the go-ahead to commit our nation to a decade-long pointless war. We did get to see Saddam Hussein’s tonsils, though.

Hussein

Say Ah-h-h

Anyway, back to the housing bubble. Wall Street banksters, quants, and fellow travelers discovered fascinating new ways to fleece investors with mortgage-backed securities and, while they were at it, make scads upon scads of dough for themselves no matter whether their financial instruments were successful or not, preferably unsuccessful because…, well, it’s pretty much impossible to explain why, but the banksters and quants and the rest are sitting pretty right now while the rest of us are still dusting ourselves off.

The banksters and quants and the others were punished by being named to high-level economic advisory positions in the Obama White House and as regulators of the operations they’d transformed into casino games. That’ll show ’em.

Casino

“This Is A Sound Investment, Sir.”

So, today, municipalities that had invested in their crooked schemes are broke, school budgets are being slashed, social service agencies are closing their doors, and the poor are being blamed for all of it. The fiends.

As this was all going on, there arose in this great nation a grass-roots political movement dedicated to the age-old ideals of selfishness, savage competition, refusal to share any wealth whatsoever, anti-intellectualism, and reactionary demagoguery with a sprinkling of racism and misogyny thrown in. They called themselves the Tea Party, which seemed rather euphemistic. I might have suggested they call themselves a Bunch of Big Pricks.

Tea Party

Apple Pie Americanism

Working feverishly behind the scenes, this nation’s spies and spooks, embarrassed by their failure to nab the 9/11 plotters before they struck, expanded their capabilities to eavesdrop on your Thanksgiving email exchanges with your aunt in Kokomo. By the way, you might want to let her know that three cups of sugar in her cranberry orange sauce is a tad much.

And, hey, here are two unforgettable names from the -zeroes: Joe the Plumber and Terry Schiavo.

So, kiddies, that was the ‘Aughts in a nutshell.

You might think I’m being pessimistic but, honest, the future actually looks brighter to me. Things couldn’t possibly get any worse.

Could they?

Your Daily Hot Air

Meet The New Boss

At long, long, long, long, lo-o-o-o-o-ong last (have I made my point yet?), the august WFHB Board of Directors and Protectors of Free Speech, Community Access, and the Democratic Process will select a new czar of the airwaves today.

The station has been running without an official boss since the surprising departure several decades ago (well, okay, last June) of fundraiser extraordinaire and and radio savant Chad Carrothers. WFHB’s Board typically moves at a glacial pace but this time it appeared as though the ice flow had come to a complete halt.

The Board has had the three final candidates for the open General Manager position hop through hoops and, on several occasions, engage in games of dodgeball with the unwashed masses (read: the rank and file volunteer membership of the station). The lucky (unlucky?) three fielded Q.’s in public forums wherein they were asked about their hopes, dreams, plans, and systolic and diastolic numbers.

Now, the folderol is complete. The vote takes place today. Oh, wait — one last bit of folderol remains: before the Board votes, there will be yet another opportunity for jes’ plain folks to voice their preferences, displeasure, or delirium regarding the unlucky (lucky?) three. As if the Boarders don’t have enough info already. And as if everybody with an opinion hasn’t already shouted it from atop the fish on the dome.

Courthouse Dome

When Chad Carrothers dropped a second bomb on us and announced he and his clan were coming back from their sojourn in the Pacific Northwest, I immediately concluded he’d been summoned, sub rosa, by one or more Boardfolk to return to this metrop. and rescue the station from a mediocre cast of applicants. That was a few weeks ago. I would have bet my good money that the GM chair was being fitted once again for CC.

Now? Not so fast. I’m hearing too much grumbling among the membership about the commander emeritus possibly coming back. And some of the grumblers believe a few Board members have joined the chorus.

Which leads me to hedge my bets. If you, like me, are afraid to take a total bath on the GM pick action, lay a little dough off on this proposition: News Director Alycin Bektesh just may be compelled to share her key to the WFHB Dames’ Executive Washroom with the new boss after today’s vote.

A Different America

Bill Clinton did what he does best (no, not that) yesterday in Virginia when he stumped for his old pal Terry McAuliffe, who’s running against a Tea Party darling for governor of the Commonwealth. Clinton, it may be recalled, is a campaigner without peer and who, if Al Gore hadn’t gotten all huffy and puffy about his former boss’s sexual peccadilloes, might have helped the Veep beat George W. Bush in the 2000 presidential election, but let’s not cry over that spilt milk again.

Clinton & Socks

[Insert Way-Too-Easy Joke Here]

Clinton Sunday afternoon told a McAuliffe rally that Dems have suffered in non-presidential election years of late because “a whole different America” shows up to vote. Meaning, of course, that tons of folk came out to vote for Barack Obama but those same folk punted when governorships and congressional seats and school board positions were up for grabs. Ergo, the Tea Party gains of the last few years.

McAuliffe’s opponent, a fellow named Ken Cuccinelli, pretty much verified Clinton’s assessment. He told his own supporters, “If we want to import D.C. politics and tactics to Richmond, Terry McAuliffe will do it for us. Of course, we’ll also get good Detroit financial policy, too. And we’ll get Hollywood values, too. And Bloomberg New York City gun control.”

Allow me to decode Cuccinelli here: If you don’t vote for me, the Democrats (Washington), the darkies (Detroit), the fags (Hollywood), and the Jews (Bloomberg New York) will take over.

Democrats, darkies, fags, and Jews voted for Barack Obama twice. They tended to stay home in 2010.

Man, if only Al Gore wasn’t such a prude.

The Pencil Today:

HotAirLogoFinal Monday

THE QUOTE

“Who would have ever thought blacks would get out and support the first black president? Who would have ever thought women would shy away from the party of transvaginal probes? Who would have ever thought gays would work against a party that treated them as immoral and subhuman? Who would have ever thought young people would desert a party that ignored science and hectored on social issues? Who would have ever thought Latinos would scorn a party that expected them to finish up their chores and self-deport?” — Maureen Dowd

Dowd

YOU AND IRAQ

Comic and politico Aaron Freeman has put out a call for anyone who can honestly say she or he was not taken in by the Bush Administration’s rationalizations for the Iraq War in late 2002 and early 2003.

Freeman

Aaron Freeman

You remember, don’t you? Georgey-boy, Dick Cheney, Condoleeza Rice, and even Colin Powell stood on their heads to implant the images of bloodthirsty brown people, mushroom clouds, and general panic in our imaginations in order to snow us into attacking the Saddam Hussein regime.

Perhaps the saddest moment of the buildup to war was Secretary of State Powell half-heartedly trying to sell the United Nations General Assembly on “evidence” that Hussein and his wild-eyed pals were thisclose to launching a big one against this holy land.

The funnyman — Freeman, not Bush — wonders why anyone would have doubted the word of the Bushies, considering the fact that most highly intelligent people he knew at the time bought the casus belli hook, line, and sinker.

9/11 Panic

So, take yourself back some ten years to those glory days of yore. Try to remember what you were thinking at the time. And don’t forget we were only a little more than a year past the 9/11 attacks. Be honest and tell us, in the poll below, if you bought the Bush line or you thought, even as we were gassing up our B-2 Stealth Bombers, that he and his gang were full of shit.

Oh, and leave a comment in the box labeled “Other” explaining why you thought one way or the other.

Thanks in advance.

POLL WATCHING

From phdcomic.com

THE SHORT OF IT

That’s all for today, kiddies. I been working my fingertips to the bone, trying to get the new Ryder magazine and film series website off the ground, along with publisher Peter LoPilato and developer Boice Tomlin. As a result, I feel lazy today.

Remember to stop in at The Book Corner. A few words of advice, though. Do not buy either of Bill O’Reilly’s bestsellers, “Killing Lincoln” and “Killing Kennedy.” Do not buy “50 Shades of Chicken.” And do not buy any of those I-died-and-went-to-heaven books.

Book Cover

Don’t You Dare!

Reading should improve your mind, not shrink it.

Otherwise, buy anything you want.

CHAIN GANG

The Pencil Today:

HotAirLogoFinal Monday

THE QUOTE

Dave: “Did you ever go to confession?”

Moocher: “Twice.”

Dave: “Did it make you feel better?”

Moocher: “Once.”

— Dialogue from “Breaking Away

Publicity Still from "Breaking Away"

TERROR ALERT!

We really haven’t given much thought to the idea of domestic terrorism since the financial crash of 2007/08 — which, by the way, was a government-sponsored, systematic terrorist act all its own.

In the weeks following 9/11 every single one of us was scared to death that mad Arabs would be flying airplanes into skyscrapers of every big city and parking trucks full of fertilizer-based explosives outside public libraries from Bedford to Skokie.

Bedford (IN) Library

A Target?

Even I, the World’s Smartest Man, who was telling people within hours of the Twin Towers falling that the attack was a one-off, that nothing even remotely like it would happen again within the foreseeable future, still harbored in my heart an irrational, petrifying fear that we were in for it.

Then, of course, we flexed our muscles and marched headlong into a bizarrely truncated war in Afghanistan, with our president, who was being compared to Churchill in the aftermath of the attacks (no lie), deciding to cut off the pursuit of Osama bin Laden and send our soldiers into the meat grinder that was Iraq.

Before long, and after toppling the governments of two sovereign nations, we began to think of ourselves less as victims and more as the people who ruled the world.

And we were, militarily, culturally, economically — just about every which way you cared to look at it. Then the investment bankers and their pimps in Washington saw their double-downs and double-crosses blow up like…, well, like a terrorist’s bomb. With a recession bordering on depression staring us on the face, we had zero time to think about crazy Arabs attacking us.

Blankfein, Dimon, et al

Domestic Terrorists

Still, this holy land spends hundreds of millions of dollars — nay, billions — on blue-uniformed, inadequately trained, cheap labor to protect our airports, and bureaucrats, pencil-pushers, and wonks to man our Department of Homeland Security.

You’d think we’d just spent the past decade-plus enduring attacks from every side.

We haven’t. Not only that, we have been living, fatly, in the safest country in the world, in terms of wild-eyed outsiders coming here and blowing us up. Never mind that our own citizens are shooting each other up like those of no other nation in the history of the Earth.

It’s beside the point that crazy Arabs are as gnats compared to crazy Americans who prey on their fellow citizens.

Anyway, Reason magazine has run a compelling piece on terrorists and us. Here’s a taste: Did you know that fewer than 500 citizens of this holy land have been offed by outside terrorists since 1970? That, of course, is not counting 9/11, which many might counter is like saying the Hoosier men’s basketball team beat Coppin State by 87 points Saturday night if you just disregard the 51 points the Eagles scored.

On the other hand, our entire Homeland Security apparatus is based upon the outlier. It would be like Saint Tom Crean revamping the whole IU team and developing a new style of play because Coppin played tough in the first half and scored a few points.

Who knows, maybe the tens of thousands of people employed by DHS, the draconian Justice Department practices, and the PATRIOT Act have protected us from untold numbers of 9/11s. It’s impossible to know.

Read the piece, though. You won’t get any answers but, more importantly, it’ll raise questions.

COPPIN COACH’S COOL HANDLE

I know next to nothing about college basketball. Oh, I know that IU’s big gun is named Cody Zeller (did I spell his name right?) And, let’s see now, um, the Hoosiers are ranked Number 1 in the nation.

How could I live in this town and not know these two things?

Other than that, college hoops is played by somebody else’s kids, ergo I don’t care.

So I had to do some research to find out what the Hoosiers had done this weekend.

In doing so, I discovered that the coach of Coppin State has the coolest name imaginable: Fang Mitchell.

Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr./Baltimore Sun

Fang Mitchell

Fang Mitchell! The only other human being I’ve ever heard of with the name Fang was Phyllis Diller’s husband. And that was a gag.

Oh, and one of Soupy Sales’ animal buddies was named White Fang. Here’s a description of White Fang from Wikipedia:

“‘The Biggest and Meanest Dog in the USA,’ who appeared only as a giant white shaggy paw with black triangular felt ‘claws’ jutting out from the corner of the screen. Fang spoke with unintelligible short grunts and growls, which Soupy repeated back in English, for comic effect. White Fang was often the pie-thrower when Soupy’s jokes bombed.”

From "The Soupy Sales Show"

Soup Sales & White Fang

Fang Mitchell’s got quite a moniker to live up to.

THE KID FROM BLOOMINGTON

Speaking of Hoosiers, The Loved One and I went out on a movie date Saturday night, while the rest of Bloomington humanity was crammed into Assembly Hall to watch IU crush Coppin State by 87 points (again, disregarding the 51 the Eagles actually scored.)

We saw “Lincoln” and T-LO cried at the end, natch, even though we already knew how it would turn out.

Anyway, we remained in our seat during the credits so the tomato could stem her leaking and, lo and behold, we learned that Jackie Earle Haley had appeared in the movie.

You remember him, don’t you? The geeky, short kid who played Moocher in “Breaking Away”?

Scene from "Breaking Away"

Moocher, Between Cyril (Daniel Stern) & Mike (Dennis Quaid)

Poor kid, he went and got married in the movie even though he was just a teenager. That scene of him going into the Monroe County Courthouse with his girlfriend sent a shiver down my spine.

Funny thing is, JEH actually did get married in 1979, the year “Breaking Away” was released. He was 18 that year.

Haley plays Alexander Stephens, the Vice President of the Confederate States of America, part of a trio of emissaries who seek to negotiate a peace with Lincoln.

Scene from "Lincoln"

Haley In “Lincoln”

Moocher was the perfect role for him. Haley was born and raised in suburban Los Angeles but, honestly, he should have been a Hoosier. More specifically, he should have been a son of Bloomington. Or, better, Ellettsville.

I’ve lived in these parts for more than three years now and I’ve seen several dozen Moochers around and about. The first time I saw “Breaking Away” (only last year, by the way) I felt certain JEH was some local kid the producers had discovered to play the part.

It turns out Haley was a child star with credits going as far back as “Marcus Welby, MD” and “The Partridge Family.” Still, he screams South Central Indiana for me, the way Peewee Reese screams Louisville and John Belushi screams Chicago, the other towns in which I’ve lived.

I suppose if I had to pick an actual Bloomingtonian to scream Bloomington for me, it’d be Hoagie Carmichael, and that wouldn’t be a bad choice at all.

He edges out that man about town, Leo Cook.

Leo Cook

Leo Cook, On Vogue In An Alternate Universe

ASTRO-FIZZIES

From Science Is A Verb, via I Fucking Love Science:

Science Is A Verb

If you missed it this morning, try to catch it just before dawn tomorrow. Take note, though, that people are spreading this viral piece of misinformation about the event. As usual, reality isn’t enough for Americans so we have to concoct nonsense to entertain ourselves.

The Pencil Today:

THE QUOTE

“Don’t know if it’s good or bad that a Google search on ‘Big Bang Theory’ lists the sitcom before the origin of the Universe.” — Neil de Grasse Tyson

TAKE A DEEP BREATH

Have you seen the site White People Mourning Romney yet?

An Image From White People Mourning Romney

The Loved One sent me the link last night and, to say the least, it takes my breath away. Couple that with conservative guru Richard Viguerie saying Mitt Romney lost because he didn’t hammer it home that Barack Obama is a “radical” who is out to destroy our holy land and you get the gist of the angst Tuesday’s election caused much of the nation.

I wrote on Facebook the other day, “Personal to Republicans like Karl Rove & Glenn Beck and everybody who thinks the nation is gonna collapse now that Obama’s been reelected: Get hold of yourselves, people!”

It does seem on first blush that many Republicans and Me Party-ists and Libertarians have become opera singers and drama queens about an event that occurs every four years.

While driving The Loved One to work this morning, I said something on the order of, These people are lunatics. She had a flash of equanimity, though, and pointed out that we’d be singing a very similar tune, only with different lyrics, had Romney won.

She’s right.

Then again, I thought of George W. Bush “winning” the 2000 election. I could have consoled myself by saying, “Well, it’s only four years, we’ll get ‘im next time.” The problem was Bush bollixed the Afghan War and then tricked the nation into the Iraq War. Whatever my worst fears were about Bush at the time of his “victory,” those misdeeds far exceeded them.

I don’t expect Obama to manufacture evidence to whip up war hysteria. The thing that petrifies the Right is his willingness to spend dough on social services.

Even if he bollixes that agenda big time — say he creates some useless, bloated federal authority overseeing the health care system — it still won’t come close to comparing with a couple of wars that have thus far cost hundreds of thousands of civilian and military lives.

So, on third thought, yeah, the people wailing and gnashing their teeth and predicting apocalypse — literally — over another four years of Obama are pretty much lunatics.

BILLIONS AND BILLIONS

Today is Carl Sagan‘s birthday.

Sagan was one of the coolest guys of the late 20th Century.

Carl Sagan And Johnny Carson

He popularized science to such a degree that he was a regular guest on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.

By the way, Sagan’s signature line, “billions and billions”? He never said it. He revealed that tidbit in his book entitled — what else? — “Billions and Billions.”

Sagan’s early passing was a great loss, especially in this era of anti-intellectualism and distrust of science. On the other hand, we’re not totally adrift — the big boss at the Hayden Planetarium, Neil de Grasse Tyson, is a worthy successor. He only needs a signature line — that he never said.

FIRE

Now the news comes that a half dozen Tibetans have set themselves on fire in recent days to dramatize their unhappiness with the Chinese, whose Communist Party has been convening in Beijing.

That makes a total of some 60 Tibetans who’ve lit themselves ablaze in the last two years.

Buddhist Nun Palden Choetso Immolates Herself Earlier This Year

Make no mistake, The Chinese are a bunch of bullies when it comes to Tibet. For that matter, they’re bullies in just about every issue, foreign and domestic, they address.

Is it my Western mindset that causes me to think it’d make more tactical sense to, I don’t know, set fire to the enemy rather than yourself?

Is suicide ever called for in a political dispute?

2000 LIGHT YEARS FROM HOME

Psychedelia, baby!

The only events listings you need in Bloomington.

Friday, November 9th, 2012

LECTURE ◗ IU Maurer School of Law — “The Transnistria Conflict: Not Frozen,” Presented by Matt Rojansky, deputy director of the Russia and Eurasia program at the Carnegie Endowment; Noon

LECTURE ◗ IU Ballantine Hall — “Latin America and China: Primary Goods, Populism, and Political leverage,” Presented by Andrae Marak of Governors State University; 12:30pm

LECTURE ◗ IU SoFA — “Artists’ Books: When the Goblet Becomes the Wine,” Presnted by Bill and Vicky Stewart of Vamp & Tramp Booksellers; 4:30pm

ARTS & CRAFTS ◗ University Baptist ChurchBloomington Glass Guild Holiday Show; 5-9pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Auer HallDoctoral Recital: Joo Pak on piano; 5pm

ARTS & CRAFTS ◗ First United Church of Bloomington27th Annual Fiber Art Show & Sale; 5-9pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Musical Arts Center Recital HallDoctoral Recital: Mathew Cataldi on piano; 5pm

ARTS & CRAFTS ◗ St. Mark’s United Methodist Church15th Annual Bloomington Local Clay Holiday Show & Sale; 5-9pm

ART ◗ The Venue Fine Art & GiftsOpening reception for the exhibit: Brian Gordy Watercolor Realism; 6pm

FILM ◗ IU Cinema — “Truly Filmic Underground Shorts,” Experimental film; 6:30pm

FILM ◗ IU Fine Arts TheaterRyder Film Series: “Two Angry Moms“; 6:45pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Musical Arts Center Recital HallStudent Recital: Christopher Arkin on trumpet; 7pm

BOOKS ◗ Boxcar BooksPoet Eugene Gloria reads from his book, “My Favorite Warlord“; 7pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Ford-Crawford HallSenior Recital: Felicia Wisniewski on harp; 7pm

MUSIC ◗ Muddy Boots Cafe, NashvilleWhipstitch Sallies; 7-9pm

FILM ◗ IU Woodburn Hall TheaterRyder Film Series: “17 Girls“; 7:15pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Musical Arts Center, CourtyardPre-Concert Carillon Recital; 7:15pm

STAGE ◗ IU Halls TheatreDrama, “Spring Awakening“; 7:30pm

STAGE ◗ Ivy Tech Waldron Center, in the Rose FirebayDrama, “The Rimers of Eldritch,” Presented by Ivy Tech Student Productions; 7:30pm

STAGE ◗ Bloomington High School NorthComedy/drama, “Ondine“; 7:30pm

MUSIC ◗ Rachael’s CafeFractures (ohio), Give & Take, My Sweet Fall, Another Untold Story; 7:30-10pm

STAGE ◗ IU Ivy Tech Waldron Center, Auditorium Comedy, “Alfred Hitchcock’s 39 Steps“; 7:30pm

OPERA ◗ IU Musical Arts Center — “Cendrillon (Cinderella),” Presented by IU Opera Theater; 8pm

COMEDY ◗ The Comedy AtticGreg Hahn; 8pm

MUSIC ◗ The Player’s PubGreg Foresman; 8pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Auer HallGuitar Class Solo Recital: Students of Ernesto Bitetti; 8pm

SPORTS ◗ IU Assembly HallHoosier men’s basketball vs. Bryant University; 8pm

BENEFIT ◗ Rhino’s All Ages Music ClubLive music, silent auction, and various events, For the Thunderbirds Junior Roller Derby team; 8pm

FILM ◗ IU Fine Arts TheaterRyder Film Series: “Keep the Lights On“; 8:15pm

MUSIC ◗ The BishopYellow Ostrich, Strand of Oak; 8:30pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Ford-Crawford HallSenior Recital: Lauren Raby on flute; 8:30pm

FILM ◗ IU Woodburn Hall TheaterRyder Film Series: “All Together“; 8:45pm

MUSIC ◗ The BluebirdHairbangers Ball; 9pm

FILM ◗ IU Cinema — “Holy Motors“; 9:30pm

MUSIC ◗ Max’s PlaceSacred Priest; 9:30pm

COMEDY ◗ The Comedy AtticGreg Hahn; 10:30pm

MUSIC ◗ Max’s PlaceTuff Tones; 11pm

ONGOING:

ART ◗ IU Art MuseumExhibits:

  • “Paragons of Filial Piety,” by Utagawa Kuniyoshi; through December 31st
  • “Intimate Models: Photographs of Husbands, Wives, and Lovers,” by Julia Margaret, Cameron, Edward Weston, & Harry Callahan; through December 31st
  • French Printmaking in the Seventeenth Century;” through December 31st
  • Celebration of Cuban Art & Film: Pop-art by Joe Tilson; through December 31st
  • Threads of Love: Baby Carriers from China’s Minority Nationalities“; through December 23rd
  • Workers of the World, Unite!” through December 31st
  • Embracing Nature,” by Barry Gealt; through December 23rd
  • Pioneers & Exiles: German Expressionism,” through December 23rd

ART ◗ Ivy Tech Waldron CenterExhibits through December 1st:

  • “Essentially Human,” By William Fillmore
  • “Two Sides to Every Story,” By Barry Barnes
  • “Horizons in Pencil and Wax,” By Carol Myers

ART ◗ IU SoFA Grunwald GalleryExhibits through November 16th:

  • Buzz Spector: Off the Shelf
  • Small Is Big

ART ◗ IU Kinsey Institute GalleryExhibits through December 20th:

  • A Place Aside: Artists and Their Partners
  • Gender Expressions

ART ◗ IU Mathers Museum of World CulturesExhibits:

  • “¡Cuba Si! Posters from the Revolution: 1960s and 1970s”
  • “From the Big Bang to the World Wide Web: The Origins of Everything”
  • “Thoughts, Things, and Theories… What Is Culture?”
  • “Picturing Archaeology”
  • “Personal Accents: Accessories from Around the World”
  • “Blended Harmonies: Music and Religion in Nepal”
  • “The Day in Its Color: A Hoosier Photographer’s Journey through Mid-century America”
  • “TOYing with Ideas”
  • “Living Heritage: Performing Arts of Southeast Asia”
  • “On a Wing and a Prayer”

BOOKS ◗ IU Lilly LibraryExhibits:

  • The War of 1812 in the Collections of the Lilly Library“; through December 15th
  • A World of Puzzles,” selections from the Slocum Puzzle Collection

ARTIFACTS ◗ Monroe County History CenterExhibits:

  • Doctors & Dentists: A Look into the Monroe County Medical Professions
  • What Is Your Quilting Story?
  • Garden Glamour: Floral Fashion Frenzy
  • Bloomington Then & Now
  • World War II Uniforms
  • Limestone Industry in Monroe County

The Ryder & The Electron Pencil. All Bloomington. All the time.

The Pencil Today:

THE QUOTE

“Since the nation’s founding, African Americans repeatedly have been controlled through institutions such as slavery and Jim Crow, which appear to die but then are reborn in new form, tailored to the needs and constraints of the time.” — Michelle Alexander

YES, YOU CAN VOTE SATURDAY

Only three days left for early voting at The Curry Building, 214 W. Seventh St. Here are hours for voting there:

  • Today: 8am-6pm
  • Tomorrow: 8am-6pm
  • Monday: 8am-Noon

If you’re a traditionalist (or a procrastinator) who won’t vote until Tuesday and still don’t know where your local polling place is, go here.

OPEN YOUR EYES FOR A BIG SURPRISE!

Trojan horses aren’t just for computers.

The Republicans of Alabama have built a beauty, ready to disgorge its anti-public education cargo on Election Day.

Go Ahead, Open It!

The GOP has devised an amendment, to be voted on by the people Tuesday, that purportedly brings Alabama into the civilized world. Alabamans will decide on the question of whether to send the amendment to the legislature for final approval.

The whole thing at first sounds so enlightened: “This bill proposes an amendment to delete those remaining ‘Jim Crow’ provisions of the Constitution of Alabama which have not been expressly repealed by vote of the people.”

Alabama’s Republicans are running around bleating that the Alabama Segregated Reference Ban Amendment will at last cleanse the state constitution of words like “colored” and language that that relegated blacks and the poor to second class status. The state’s governor and other Republicans are patting themselves on the back for being so broadminded.

Noble of them, huh?

Nuh.

The proposed change to the constitution, AKA Amendment 4, contains this surprise: It frees the state from “recognizing any right to education or training at public expense.”

In other words, if we don’t feel like paying for public schools, we won’t.

That’s the flag of the State of Alabama, above. It’s fitting, I’d say, for a populace that soon may be mainly illiterate.

HIS MAN

Michael Bloomberg backs Barack Obama?

Wow.

Convinced

Who’da thunk hurricanes could play such a profound role in the failure and success of presidencies?

Maybe only climatologists and people who, y’know, are educated and actually listen to scientists.

The only events listings you need in Bloomington.


Friday, November 2nd, 2012

VOTE ◗ The Curry Building, 214 W. Seventh St.; 8am-6pm

EXHIBIT ◗ IU Center for the Study of Global Change, Seminar Room, 201 N. Indiana Ave.Japan’s Animal Kingdom: Animals and Civilization in the Japanese Enlightenment; Noon

MUSIC ◗ IU Memorial Union, Dunn Meadow CafeFriday Noon Concert Series: Brazil Pandeiro; Noon

ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSION ◗ IU Asian Culture Center Lounge, 807 E. 10th St.Luncheon Talk Series: “The Secrets of the Gangnam Style“; Noon-1pm

FEST ◗ IU Auditorium6th Annual IU World’s Fare, 20+ international student groups showcase their home countries with cultural displays, food, and performance, Open to the public; 5-8pm

CULTURE ◗ IU Mathers Museum of World CulturesCommunity Altar Closing Reception, For Dia de los Muertos; 5-8pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Auer HallStudent Recital: Barkada Saxophone Quartet; 5pm

DEMONSTRATION ◗ WonderLabThe Science of Art: Making Music, Charlie Jesseph demonstrates the physics of sound using percussion instruments; 5-8:30pm

CRAFT ◗ By Hand GalleryHow to Make Art Dolls, Presented by Wendy Bethel; 5-8pm

ART ◗ Pictura GalleryOpening reception for the exhibit:  Adam Thorman & Laura Plageman; 5-8pm

MIXER ◗ The Player’s PubAtheist Happy Hour; 5:30pm

ART ◗ The Venue Fine Art & GiftsOpening reception for the exhibit: Bryan Gordy Watercolors; 6pm

ART ◗ Bloomington Clay Studio4th Annual Devotion Group Art Show, Plus films and live music, One night only; 6pm-Midnight

STAGE ◗ WonderLabFamily musical, “Captain Louie,” Presented by the University Players; 6pm

BENEFIT ◗ Bloomington Convention Center2012 Sycamore Land Trust Annual Celebration, Including photo exhibit, dinner, silent auction; 6-9pm

FILM ◗ IU Cinema — “Ornette: Made in America“; 6:30pm

FILM ◗ IU Fine Arts TheaterRyder Film Series: “Two Angry Moms“; 6:45pm

STAGE ◗ Bloomington Playwrights Project — “Maniobras Traviesas“; 7pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Ford-Crawford HallJunior Recital: Cornelia Louise Sommer on bassoon; 7pm

FILM ◗ IU Woodburn Hall TheaterRyder Film Series: “All Together“; 7:15pm

STAGE ◗ IU Halls TheatreDrama, “Spring Awakening“; 7:30pm

STAGE ◗ Ivy Tech Waldron Center, AuditoriumComedy, “Hitchcock’s 39 Steps“; 7:30pm

COMEDY ◗ The Comedy AtticMyq Kaplan; 8pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Auer HallPro Arte Singers & Chamber Orchestra perform Haydn’s “Die Schöpfung (The Creation),” William Jon Gray, conductor; 8pm

MUSIC ◗ Cafe DjangoJazz Fables Quintet, Tribute to John Coltrane; 8-10pm

MUSIC ◗ Chateau Thomas Wine Bar, 118 N. Walnut St.Dylan Carroll; 8-10pm

MUSIC ◗ Rachael’s CafeChris Wilson & Planet Earth, Jesse Lacy, Joe Donnelly (of Joe Donnelly & the Indulgences); 8-10pm

FILM ◗ IU Fine Arts TheaterRyder Film Series: “Keep the Lights On“; 8:15pm

MUSIC ◗ The BluebirdAdventure Club; 9pm

MUSIC ◗ Max’s PlaceLexi Minich; 9pm

FILM ◗ IU Woodburn Hall TheaterRyder Film Series: “Side by Side“; 9pm

FILM ◗ IU Cinema — “Robert Frost: A Lover’s Quarrel with the World“; 9:30pm

COMEDY ◗ The Comedy AtticMyq Kaplan; 10:30pm

MUSIC ◗ Bear’s PlaceBonfire, John Daymoths; 11pm

MUSIC ◗ The BishopThe Darned, The Wild Dicks; Midnight

ONGOING:

ART ◗ IU Art MuseumExhibits:

  • “Paragons of Filial Piety,” by Utagawa Kuniyoshi; through December 31st
  • “Intimate Models: Photographs of Husbands, Wives, and Lovers,” by Julia Margaret, Cameron, Edward Weston, & Harry Callahan; through December 31st
  • French Printmaking in the Seventeenth Century;” through December 31st
  • Celebration of Cuban Art & Film: Pop-art by Joe Tilson; through December 31st
  • Threads of Love: Baby Carriers from China’s Minority Nationalities“; through December 23rd
  • Workers of the World, Unite!” through December 31st
  • Embracing Nature,” by Barry Gealt; through December 23rd
  • Pioneers & Exiles: German Expressionism,” through December 23rd

ART ◗ Ivy Tech Waldron CenterExhibits through December 1st:

  • “Essentially Human,” By William Fillmore
  • “Two Sides to Every Story,” By Barry Barnes
  • “Horizons in Pencil and Wax,” By Carol Myers

ART ◗ IU SoFA Grunwald GalleryExhibits through November 16th:

  • Buzz Spector: Off the Shelf
  • Small Is Big

ART ◗ IU Kinsey Institute GalleryExhibits through December 20th:

  • A Place Aside: Artists and Their Partners
  • Gender Expressions

ART ◗ IU Mathers Museum of World CulturesExhibits:

  • “¡Cuba Si! Posters from the Revolution: 1960s and 1970s”
  • “From the Big Bang to the World Wide Web: The Origins of Everything”
  • “Thoughts, Things, and Theories… What Is Culture?”
  • “Picturing Archaeology”
  • “Personal Accents: Accessories from Around the World”
  • “Blended Harmonies: Music and Religion in Nepal”
  • “The Day in Its Color: A Hoosier Photographer’s Journey through Mid-century America”
  • “TOYing with Ideas”
  • “Living Heritage: Performing Arts of Southeast Asia”
  • “On a Wing and a Prayer”

BOOKS ◗ IU Lilly LibraryExhibits:

  • The War of 1812 in the Collections of the Lilly Library“; through December 15th
  • A World of Puzzles,” selections from the Slocum Puzzle Collection

ARTIFACTS ◗ Monroe County History CenterExhibits:

  • Doctors & Dentists: A Look into the Monroe County Medical Professions
  • What Is Your Quilting Story?
  • Garden Glamour: Floral Fashion Frenzy
  • Bloomington Then & Now
  • World War II Uniforms
  • Limestone Industry in Monroe County

The Ryder & The Electron Pencil. All Bloomington. All the time.

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