April 2004 Archives

Things to see/do this weekend

Go see SplitStream (April 30-May 1 at 7pm) at Dance Theater Workshop. It includes Ann Liv Young, of whom I've written before, Jonathan Berger, and Antonio Ramos. File under the theater side of "dance theater", with a heavy emphasis on ''Lordy, what was that all about?'' We loved it.

Go to Momenta's benefit, held at White Columns, on Saturday, May 1. It's one of the great art bargains in the city - a raffle of great art works for a $175 ticket. We'll be there, so don't pick any of our favorites if your number gets drawn sooner than ours.

Go see Joe Ovelman at Oliver Kamm, closing tomorrow. Check out the review by Holland Cotter in today's NY Times. It sounds like he's wondering what Joe's up to, but whatever it is, he likes it.

Art to see in LA

We just got a mailing about two shows at Marc Selwyn Fine Art in Los Angeles curated by Simon Watson/Scenic.

The first is a show of works by Paul P. We're big fans of Paul's work and own a painting plus a couple of works on paper. The second is a group show that includes the likes of Christian Holstad, Terence Koh, Ann Craven, Wangechi Mutu, Scott Treleaven, and Joe Ovelman.

Both open May 1 (6-8pm) and run through June 19.

Go read Steve Gilliard's post on the subject.

On Arab culture and literature

Newsday has a nice essay today by Matthew Shenoda on Arab culture and literature. An excerpt:

A survey of any of the major forces in contemporary Arab literature teaches us that while U.S. media have painted Arabs as villains of humanity, the truth is that dignity and a connection to place are central to Arab identity. We learn that the preservation of a peaceful life in one's home is a major theme in Arab literature. We learn that resistance as an innate part of people who deeply love their home and their humanity comes second to a celebration of life. We learn a reverence for nature.

In the midst of the horror of a U.S.-led war, we can look to Iraqi poet Saadi Youssef to understand that in his Basra, a child learns, "that when rain falls in mist/there will be no lightning at the end/of the horizon,/no thunder in the heart,/no wave on the river." Is this child now grown to be a "thug," as Rumsfeld claims, or is he a person yearning to reconnect with his land, to provide a place for his family to live and grow, a place in which to gaze out on a horizon that will not be dotted by missiles?

In Darwish's monumental memoir "Memory of Forgetfulness," which chronicles his experience being exiled in Beirut during the 1982 war, he writes, "They can aim sea, sky, and earth at me, but they cannot root the aroma of coffee out of me." Here we see coffee being used as an ancient symbol with roots in Abyssinia and Arabia to reflect a part of the very being of Darwish, a symbol rooted in the land, an aroma that cannot be erased by any amount of force.

Syrian poet Adonis, too, speaks of his connections to place in his poem "Remembering the First Century," when he writes, "A mountain speaks its name/to me./ After all, I have/some credentials." His credentials are roots tracing back beyond written record - his credentials are centuries of lineage in that place.

What many citizens of the United States do not have the opportunity to witness is the beauty of the Arab world, the way olive groves grace the landscape, the way children sit at the feet of their grandmothers, the way an ancient way of life has survived despite centuries of foreign occupation. And so perhaps the greatest understanding is for the people of the United States to see that Arabs are an ancient people, that the bombs over Iraq and the siege of Palestine are seeking to wipe out memory, the memory of history, of ancient and revered places, places we are all in some ways linked to.

Perhaps we need to learn that if we wipe out and erase Iraq and Palestine, we will, as Qabbani has learned, see that we are striking out half our own lives. Think of the beauty, as Darwish does, next time you smell the aroma of coffee.

Mr. David Zinn

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Handel's Tamerlano at 2003 Spoleto Festival U.S.A.
photos by Lenore Doxsee

Our good friend David Zinn, costume and set designer extraordinaire, has a new web site. We first saw his work as a little baby designer with Target Margin, with whom he continues to work, in addition to more famous venues such as New York City Opera and Santa Fe Opera.

When we saw his Flavio at New York City Opera, the audience applauded the set changes.

Tamerlano is an opera by Handel loosely based on the life of Timur, a conqueror and ruler in 14th century Central Asia. Suitably for an opera set in that region of the world, being produced last summer at an American music festival, David didn't ignore what was going on at the time.

In Handel's rarely mounted Tamerlano, the defeated Bajazet...wore traditional sultan's robes, while his corporate conquerors, barking orders and gleefully dividing the spoils, sported snazzy business suits. Mixing sexual and power politics, the libretto is nearly incomprehensible, but its centre--Bajazet losing his culture, his dignity and his daughter--is tragically clear. David Zinn's cunning set was littered with ancient books and other looted treasures at the front of the stage, and endless, empty bookshelves at the rear.
-- Jack Sullivan, Opera Magazine


Triple Creme

There I was, reading an article on queercore bands in Newsday. I thought I recognized the woman on the left of the main photo before I saw a caption. Oh my goodness! It's Christina Mazzalupo! I didn't recognize her at first because I've never seen her look so serious.

Here is her web site, and her page on Mixed Greens.

Tons o' art

Head over to James's site. He just put up several posts on recent art we've seen, with images.

Deb Margolin interview

Culturebot.org has an interview with the brilliant Deb Margolin. Her wondeful book "Of All The Nerve" is really expensive, since it's from an academic press. Go see if Powell's has a used copy.

She will be doing work from her new "performance novel" as part of the Dixon Place Veterans Series in May and early June. I recommend going!

A sample:

Q: When is solo performance effective and when is it self indulgent?

Self-indulgence... I’m very careful about that word because I feel like that’s a word we can use to shut ourselves down. That’s the word that the inner critic uses. Sentimental that’s another one, see there is no art without sentiment. As soon as you can drop down and reveal something about your own humanity, the minute you reveal something truthful about your own humanity, you shed light on the entire spectrum of human experience. That’s why we go to the theater for the revelation, that’s why I go. I go to stare at people!

You can’t do it in the subway you can’t do it on a bus. You go to the theater, you pay your money and you just stare at these people. That’s what you do and no one is going to arrest you. It’s very exciting. The more specific you are with your character the more generally we see the whole human condition. And so I feel the only way to get at that could be labeled, in advance of finding the jewel of revelation, self indulgent.

I don’t worry about self indulgence. I don’t worry that my work is self indulgent. I feel the need to step up and take responsibility for how my work signifies politically and I feel the need to be responsible for a passionate and articulate desire to speak. Those are my responsibilities. I don’t say anything that I’m not dying to say onstage. I say the things that I cannot die without having spoken about. And you know, that’s going to reveal something weird about my humanity and in so doing it will reveal something about the entire human condition. I trust that chain of events the way I trust I’m wearing this jacket. I know that to be true I know very few things and that’s one of them. So I live my artistic life by that principle. I’m not afraid of self indulgence as long as I am passionate to speak. I know that I will be revealing something important about humanity through my own humanity. Once you find your passion for speech, and your prerogative to speak, you are unstoppable.

Get Fuzzy



Even the comics I read for fun are getting political.

Remember when I wrote about how Jay Blotcher can't be a stringer for the NY Times because he did media relations with ACT UP over ten years ago?

One would hope that the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association would be concerned about such things. You would be wrong, at least in terms of them being on the right side of the issue. As Jay tells us:

The National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association has barred me from appearing at their Plenary on Journalistic Objectivity, scheduled at the June Convention in NYC.

The plenary session was created and organized by CNN journalist Rose Arce.

A month ago, Rose invited me to sit on this panel. She felt my case strongly reflected the current debate over journalistic objectivity. She plans to have the two SF Chronicle lesbian journalists on the panel, who were reassigned from the gay marriage beat after becoming hitched.

However, when Rose gave her list of panelists to NLGJA's Executive Committee, she was told I could not sit on the panel.

Why? NLGJA felt my problem with the NY Times was a "personnel matter" between employer and employee ... and NOT an issue of journalistic ethics. This was the same reasoning they gave me in March, when they refused to support my case.

Note that the NLGJA thinks it was wrong for the San Francisco Chronicle to prevent two lesbian reporters from covering gay marriage after they got married.

I guess it's only things related to AIDS that the NLGJA considers mere "personnel matters."


Williamsburg Friday openings

Openings we're going to tomorrow:

Eyewash @ Boreas - group show that includes Joan Linder

Jennifer Dalton at Plus Ultra

Tim Laun at Parker's Box

Yun-Fei Ji at Pierogi 2000

Eve Sussman at Roebling Hall

Tax them out of existence

Let's have a holy war!

If churches want to engage in politics, they need to be taxed just like everyone else. In Michigan, Catholics think doctors should have the right to refuse treatment to gay people if they don't approve of their "lifestyle."

Can you believe the Bush administration is actually talking about giving these people more tax dollars than they already receive? Where is my "I'm gay" checkoff box on my tax return to object?

Doctors or other health care providers could not be disciplined or sued if they refuse to treat gay patients under legislation passed Wednesday by the Michigan House.

The bill allows health care workers to refuse service to anyone on moral, ethical or religious grounds.

The Republican dominated House passed the measure as dozens of Catholics looked on from the gallery. The Michigan Catholic Conference, which pushed for the bills, hosted a legislative day for Catholics on Wednesday at the state Capitol.


Paul A. Long, vice president for public policy for the Michigan Catholic Conference, said the bills promote the constitutional right to religious freedom.

"Individual and institutional health care providers can and should maintain their mission and their services without compromising faith-based teaching," he said in a written statement.

And people wonder why I won't set foot in a Catholic church for a wedding or funeral?!

A police state won't protect us

Bush went to Buffalo yesterday to promote the Patriot Act. He chose it because it was the location of the prosecution of the "Lackawanna Six," but that's not a case that provides a convincing argument.

Even now, after the arrests and the anger and the world media spotlight, the mystery for neighbors in this old steel town remains this: Why would six of their young men so readily agree to plead guilty to terror charges, accepting long prison terms far from home?


But defense attorneys say the answer is straightforward: The federal government implicitly threatened to toss the defendants into a secret military prison without trial, where they could languish indefinitely without access to courts or lawyers.

That prospect terrified the men. They accepted prison terms of 61/2 to 9 years.

"We had to worry about the defendants being whisked out of the courtroom and declared enemy combatants if the case started going well for us," said attorney Patrick J. Brown, who defended one of the accused. "So we just ran up the white flag and folded. Most of us wish we'd never been associated with this case."

The Lackawanna case illustrates how the post-Sept. 11, 2001, legal landscape tilts heavily toward the prosecution, government critics contend. Future defendants in terror cases could face the same choice: Plead guilty or face the possibility of indefinite imprisonment or even the death penalty. That troubles defense attorneys and some legal scholars, not least because prosecutors never offered evidence that the Lackawanna defendants intended to commit an act of terrorism.

I bring this up because of the suicide car bomber in Riyadh today.

A suicide car bomber destroyed a Saudi security forces building in the capital Wednesday, killing a senior officer and at least nine other people.

Medical and security sources in Riyadh said more than 60 people were wounded in what an official said was the sixth attempt to mount such a "terrorist attack" in a week. Five others had been foiled.

The blast, which coincided with a visit to the city by a top U.S. official, tore the front off the six-storey administrative block. Saudi television showed uniformed security force personnel in hospital and said some children were also injured.

The kingdom, a key U.S. ally and the world's largest oil exporter, is battling a tide of Islamist militancy linked to Saudi-born Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda network, which Washington accuses of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on U.S. cities.

Last year, suicide bombs killed 50 people in Riyadh.

If a police state like Saudi Arabia can't prevent attacks with such tactics, what makes people think curtailing our liberties will make us safer?

Art Linkage

James and I went to the "new and improved" Brooklyn Museum on Sunday. I don't know if I like the new glass entrance, but I wasn't totally offended by it either. The vibe was so good, with all kinds of people you might not always see at a museum, it was hard to be grumpy. I really enjoyed the Open House: Working in Brooklyn show. Because the variety of artists working in Brooklyn is so large, in a way it felt more diverse than the Whitney Biennial. It was fun to see all kinds of people walking through that show and commenting on the contempary work. Where else would I see an Orthodox Jewish family with kids watching an Anthony Goicolea video? While you're there, don't miss the Patrick Kelly show either. I loved it. I hadn't realized Bette Davis had been such a fan of his.

Tom Moody wrote about the Paper Rad show. Go read him.

Carlos de Villasante organized a show in Miami that looks great. Franklin has photos.

Good stuff

We saw two shows worth recommending in Chelsea today, before heading to the Paper Rad opening -- which is definitely recommended!

The first is Paper Chase at Axel Raben, curated by Renee Riccardo. Jon Rosenbaum's little paper sculptures are magnificent, as are many other works in the show.

The second is Joseph Maida at Wallspace. We realized after looking at his web site that we had seen one of his park images in a group show at the gallery. Also, he did the photo of Christian Holstad that appeared in the New York Times Magazine last October.

Paper Rad @ Foxy Production

Two camera phone photos from tonight's opening of Paper Rad at Foxy Production:


Cool. A small art fair in a small new hotel (a Sheraton Four Points!) in Chelsea.

Pool Art Addict, May 13-16, see the web site.

Pool Art Addict: A New York Underground Art Fair, May 13-16, 2004, is set to premiere at the new Four Points Hotel, a needle-thin 22-story structure that went up last fall on a former parking lot at 160 West 25th Street in Manhattan's Chelsea district. The fair is organized by Frére Independent (headed by Thierry Alet, an artist and co-founder of NYArts Magazine), which has taken the top four floors of the hotel and lined up 20 independent exhibitors. Designed to bring little-known artists to public attention during the spring contemporary art auctions, Pool Art Addict includes exhibitors such as the Nigerian Embassy, which is showing works by Ibiyinka Olufemi Alao; curator Amy Davila, who has organized an installation by Emily Lutzker; Le Triage Art Center from Paris, which is sponsoring Florent Mattei; and the Art & Culture/Anne-Marie Melster Gallery from Germany. General admission is $7; tickets to the opening night gala on May 13 are $30.
[via Artnet]

Get Your War On 34


Go here for the rest.

Last chance

Here is your "last chance" reminder on a couple of things.


The Civilians: Gone Missing
(Back: Jennifer Morris, Maria Dizzia, Trey Lyford; Front: Damian Baldet, Michael Esper, Alison Weller)

First, think about joining us for The Civilians' benefit on Friday in Chinatown. I already wrote about it here.


I Miss You Alreaday, 2004
Tracey Baran

Second, April 17 is the last day of Tracey Baran's brilliant show at Leslie Tonkonow.

Mao's official photographers

At ease: Hou Bo's portrait of Mao and family at the seaside

When Mao Zedong proclaimed his new Socialist China in October 1949 from the great gate of Tiananmen, he walked to the balcony's edge, looked over to the cheering crowds, and called out: "Long live the people!" Moments later, he was captured by the photographer Hou Bo, in that now-famous image, as he declared into the microphone: "The Chinese people have stood up."

In the photograph, we don't see the Chinese people themselves, listening in the square below. Mention of them - and even the greeting Mao had used - would soon become subversive. The next time Tiananmen Square would hear "Long live the people!" was 40 years later, when it was shouted by students calling for democracy, shortly before the tanks moved in.

The photograph of Mao on the balcony can now be seen in a fascinating and disturbing exhibition at the Photographers' Gallery, London, that is largely devoted to the work of Hou Bo and Xu Xiaobing, the husband-and-wife team who became Mao's official photographers.

- Monster at the Beach, The Guardian, April 10, 2004

19th Street assemblage


I think it's just trash rather than a scatter art installation. As we walked by this someone was sitting nearby in his car, with the windows down, blasting Maria Callas singing Vissi d'arte (I have lived for art) from Tosca.

The malling of NYC continues

From Crain's:

Ian Schrager's Paramount Hotel, at 245 W. 46th St., will be bought by the Hard Rock Hotel chain for $125 million. The deal is expected to close in June.
However, not everyone is impressed with Williamsburg's economic potential. Some, like Bellwether Gallery's director, Rebecca Smith, see more limitations than possibilities. "A lot of people think Williamsburg is cutting edge," Smith says. "It's not, it's just low risk, without being particularly experimental."

Frustrated with her inability to get Manhattan collectors to travel across the bridge, Smith is relocating to Chelsea, even though she runs one of the better-known galleries in the neighborhood.

Not surprisingly, many disagree with both her claims of poor foot traffic and her opinion of Williamsburg.

"She's going where the money is, and the power," artist Powhida says. "I don't blame her for wanting to sell her artists, but how good they are is up for debate. She's not all that cutting edge either."

Newsday/AP - Williamsburg comes of age

Joe Ovelman - the buzz

detail of installation of C-prints

Joe Ovelman has a solo show at Oliver Kamm/5BE Gallery.

James has a post up about the show.

It's now listed as a pick on the Village Voice web site, plus Paige West (Art Addict) and the art weblog have mentioned him.

Go see it! We have already decided to buy a few works in the show.

[photo from James's write-up]

Les Brutes Épaisses


Last September, James and I spent much of a week hanging out with two charming young French men, Nicolas Camiade and François Charpentier. They went to art school together, and are in a band called Les Brutes Épaisses, which means something like "brutish louts." The name is a joke, as it sounds like a punk band but their music is more of a smart contemporary take on the Piazzolla / Weill strand of music, which isn't quite jazz or classical or pop. It's a little like the area that artists such as Blue Flower and Cynthia Hopkins are exploring. They sent us their beautifully designed CD, titled en public, after returning to France. We were thrilled to find out how great it is, since meeting an artist and liking them personally before seeing or hearing the work is often scary.

I have uploaded some MP3s for you to check out. François is the lead singer for all of the songs except Les bonbons à la menthe, which features the voice of Nicolas. François is rather shy in person, so it's fun to hear him turn into this outgoing sexy French singer on disc.

  • Le coffre à jouets (2.8MB) - to illustrate the Piazzolla/Weill thing
  • Ma peine (2.4MB) - probably the song that uses the "edgiest" instrumental work
  • Les bonbons à la menthe (1.3MB)
  • Les moches (10.8MB) - This a big file, but worth it. The first part is a lovely duet between François and Laetitia Marty, but it has a secret bonus at the end. After a really long pause, they return to sing a parody of a Brazilian song in the style of Antonio Carlos Jobim or Joao Gilberto. It's very funny, with them improvising in French with Brazilian accents.

"Not skiing"


After two days of firefights, a marine packed the personal effects of 12 fallen comrades at the combat outpost in Ramadi on Thursday. [Maurizio Gambarini/European Pressphoto Agency]

The President of the United States is on vacation again, but it's OK -- he's not skiing. Emphasis mine in the quote below:

Democrats criticized Bush for taking the Easter-week vacation while U.S. forces are struggling to put down an uprising in Iraq. Campaigning in Milwaukee, Sen. John F. Kerry, the presumed Democratic presidential nominee, said: "I notice President Bush is taking some days off down at Crawford, Texas, and I'm told that when he takes days off, you know, he totally relaxes: He doesn't watch television, he doesn't read the newspapers, he doesn't make long-term plans, doesn't worry about the economy. I thought about that for a moment. I said, sounds to me like it's just like life in Washington, doesn't it?"

White House communications director Dan Bartlett retorted that Bush is "not skiing" in Texas, as Kerry did on a recent vacation in Idaho. He said Bush remains in contact with his military advisers and is spending Easter weekend with his family. "Most Americans will understand that," Bartlett said.

This is Bush's 33rd visit to his ranch since becoming president. He has spent all or part of 233 days on his Texas ranch since taking office, according to a tally by CBS News. Adding his 78 visits to Camp David and his five visits to Kennebunkport, Maine, Bush has spent all or part of 500 days in office at one of his three retreats, or more than 40 percent of his presidency.

233 days since January 2001, or almost 80 days per year? Yeah, he's just a "regular guy." U.S. workers take an average of 10.2 vacation days a year after three years on the job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

If I were President, I would probably not have continued with my month-long vacation after receiving a briefing titled "Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States."

[I found the image above on the NY Times web site, but there was no link to make it larger. If someone finds a better version of the image I will replace it.]


UPDATED: I realize now that the briefing discussed was given to Bush after he was already in Crawford, Texas for his month-long vacation.

... he might have done something like this. Actually, that's not fair to Speer. He was a pretty good architect.


A look at the World War II Memorial from atop the Washington Monument as it nears the end of construction. (Ricky Carioti - The Washington Post)

From CNN/AP:

HATTIESBURG, Mississippi (AP) -- Two reporters were ordered Wednesday to erase their tape recordings of a speech by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia at a Mississippi high school.

Scalia has long barred television cameras from his speeches, but does not always forbid newspaper photographers and tape recorders. On Wednesday, he did not warn the audience at the high school that recording devices would be forbidden.

During the speech, a woman identifying herself as a deputy federal marshal demanded that a reporter for The Associated Press erase a tape recording of the justice's comments. She said the justice had asked that his appearance not be recorded.

The reporter initially resisted, but later showed the deputy how to erase the digital recording after the officer took the device from her hands. The exchange occurred in the front row of the auditorium while Scalia delivered his speech about the Constitution.

The deputy, who identified herself as Melanie Rube, also made a reporter for The Hattiesburg American erase her tape.


Last year, Scalia was criticized for refusing to allow television and radio coverage of an event in Ohio in which he received an award for supporting free speech.

Scalia, who was appointed to the bench by President Reagan in 1986, told students that the Constitution's true meaning must always be protected.

"The Constitution of the United States is extraordinary and amazing. People just don't revere it like they used to," Scalia told a full auditorium of high school students, officials, religious leaders.

He said he spends most of his time thinking about the Constitution, calling it "a brilliant piece of work."

RIP Keith Cylar


Keith Cylar, co-founder of Housing Works, has died. I have never known of an organization that started out as a grass-roots activist organization and grew into something serving so many people while keeping its activist credentials. They have always helped the people -- drug users, people with AIDS -- that the other service and homeless organizations didn't want to deal with.

James has a post about him.

Happy Tartan Day from Chelsea

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Spotted on Eighth Avenue today. Happy Tartan Day!

Adam Cvijanovic in Philadelphia

Adam Cvijanovic's mural of Osage Avenue in "Ideal City" at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts

We have seen every almost every show in New York of Adam Cvijanovic's work since Richard Anderson first showed him in the early 90s. I think he is a very smart artist and great painter, and, like so many artists we know, is a sweet person who has managed to not be chewed up by the Art World. He has a show at the Academy of Find Arts in Philadelphia titled "Ideal City."

Roberta Fallon, of artblog fame, has a great interview with him on Artnet.com.

His choice of thematic material for the show is interesting, playing off two aspects of Utopian thinking in Phildelphia history: the Quakers and MOVE.

[photo from Artnet.com]

Tim Hailand

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Tim Hailand, Untitled (SLUT) 1996

¡Mira, mira! I didn't know Tim Hailand had a website!

The Horts, collectors

I want to be like the Horts when I'm a grown-up collector. We own a few artists in common, and I like the fact that while they obviously have money, they're spending it mostly on younger, emerging artists like Paul P. and Christian Holstad.


Marge Laszlo

Well, sort of. Our friend Conrad Cummings, one of the most thoughtful and politically aware composers I have ever met, was part of a concert in January of sports-oriented music given by the Avian Orchestra in the 6th floor gym of the University Settlement on the Lower East Side. His piece, titled In Memorium Marge Laszlo is an hommage to the roller derby champion. She isn't dead, just "retired" by the forces of capitalism. This is how Conrad describes the piece:

Marge Laszlo was one of Roller Derby’s great players. The game was born on the West Coast and grew up with the early days of television. During its heyday in the 1960s a dozen teams bused all over the country. It was one of the first sports that women as well as men could make a living playing, and it provided a home and a livelihood for any number of outsiders.

Roller Derby looked anarchic. Players smashed into each other, collided into huge heaps of bodies, threw each other over the ropes into the audience, screamed at each other constantly, pulled hair, and whenever possible beat up the umpires. The highlight move was the Whip, where five or six players would link wrists to propel the player at the end into the opposing team like a projectile. Bodies would fly everywhere.

But behind all the chaos and apparent violence was actually a big extended family of players who lived and traveled together and worked out every pile-up, Whip, hair-pull, and fight sequence ahead of time. Despite the drama, athleticism, and the passionate loyalty of fans to individual teams and players, it came down to a companionable bunch of people gliding round and round the same oval track. My piece goes around its track four times.

Marge Laszlo herself is alive and well, but the game, alas, is no more. It started to lose TV viewers in the early 70s and was done in by the energy crisis when the teams couldn’t afford gas for the buses taking them from city to city. But Roller Derby lives on happily in my memory, and I’d like to think that the end of my piece is Marge’s farewell lap on her last game. Skate on, Marge!

You can hear this work, plus all of the others on the program, via New Music Box through April 15.

Go buy his CD Photo-Op. After hearing it we tracked him down and became friends with him. It is brilliant politically-aware music.

Maybe I will re-subscribe


I stopped my subscription to The Economist last year because I felt they were being intellectually dishonest with their unquestioning backing of Bush and the attack on Iraq. I always knew they were a relatively conservative news magazine, but I thought of them as principled, and a good source of non-USA news. I felt betrayed by their attitude towards the Bush administration.

Things seem to be looking up on that front.



Updated: OK, once I actually read the article I decided to keep my money.

As regular readers will know, The Economist endorsed Mr Bush in the 2000 election once he had beaten our preferred candidate, John McCain. That still looks the right choice for that election. Indeed, Al Gore served a handy reminder of his unsuitability and poor judgment by endorsing Howard Dean. This newspaper also supported Mr Bush's most controversial action, the Iraq war—and despite the continuing instability in that country we do not regret that, either.

In this helpful New York Times article, we learn what really matters to the Catholic Church.

The senator is aligned with his church on many social justice issues, including immigration, poverty, health care and the death penalty. But he diverges on the litmus issues, like abortion and stem cell research, that animate church conservatives and many in the hierarchy.

Save those unborn babies, but they're on their own after that.

James in the Washington Post

I should have posted this yesterday. James was in the Washington Post yesterday in an article on gay marriage, quoted along with the likes of Tony Kushner and Bill Dobbs.

His take on the article is here.

Chelsea Openings

My recommended openings for the next few days, all in Chelsea:

Today (Thursday):

Stuart Hawkins at LFL Gallery
Paper Chase (group show curated by Renee Riccardo/Arena) at Axel Raben


Joe Ovelman at 5BE Gallery


David Humphrey at Brent Sikkema


Also, the Skyscraper Museum is now open in Battery Park City, in the Ritz-Carlton hotel.

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