Monday, April 30, 2012

Brown Hotel: Travel + Leisure's The Best for Less

Travel + Leisure Magazine, in one of their infernal slides hows-- how I hate internet slide shows!, named the Brown Hotel one of the Fifteen Best Affordable City Hotels.

Says T+L: Built in 1923, The Brown, in downtown Louisville just three miles from the Kentucky Derby’s Churchill Downs, was a magnet for celebrities through the 1950s. This year, all 293 guest rooms will undergo a renovation. Doubles from $129.

I also happen to know that if you are very lucky, you can get a room at the Brown for considerably less than $129 on Hotwire-- if you're willing to roll those dice. The Brown's lobby bar is one of my favorite bars in the city. (And is the place where Roommate & I tossed back a couple of bourbons with Lucinda Williams and her band... good times.)

May is Hometown Tourism month here in Louisville. The Brown would be a great home base for a little downtown exploration and dining!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Samurai Exhibit at Frazier-- Coming Soon!

I once had a boyfriend who gave me a sword for my birthday. Scratch that. He was actually my ex-boyfriend at the time. And although I think (that time), I was technically the dump-er and he was the dump-ee, I was so overwhelmingly moved by this gift. I remember thinking, "Man, I have always really wanted a sword, and he just knew I would never go out and buy a sword for myself. That's so sweet."

This wasn't, like, high school. I was in my late-early twenties at the time. And yes, I still have the sword, and no I have never had cause to use it. But it's pretty. And I am glad it's there.

And I happen to know that that ex-boyfriend recently married a woman who is totally the kind of person who would also appreciate being given a sword for her birthday. And I've recently-ish entered into a relationship with a man who gave me comic books about a samurai rabbit for Christmas (which I loved).

So... it's all good.

And you'd better bet that visiting the upcoming "Samurai" exhibit at the Frazier Museum will be an easy, no-brainer date for us. From their website:

May 12 through September 30, 2012

Centuries old armor made of iron, silk and gilded metal showcase how the Samurai used their artistry to convey ferocity and instill fear. Personal items, such as painted scrolls and screens, reveal a more intimate side of Samurai culture and help expose the role of women in Samurai society. An exhibition of extraordinary beauty, artistry and richness, “Samurai” tells the epic tale of the rise and fall of one of the greatest warrior cultures in history.

This original Frazier History Museum exhibition will feature national treasure-level artifacts from Japanese and American collections, and will be shown exclusively at the Frazier Museum. “Samurai” presents a once in a lifetime opportunity to see some of the finest artifacts relating to the legacy left by this great warrior culture.

So excited!

Monday, April 23, 2012

TICKET GIVEAWAY! An Evening With Yanni

No, no, no, ladies... I'm not giving away an actual EVENING with Yanni. I'm sure that would be a fantastic night; based on the videos on his website, he seems like the smiley-est, most chipper dude in the world.

But I AM giving away two tickets to see Yanni's world tour called "An Evening with Yanni."

I am crazy excited about this. I'm so grateful that Yanni's folks touched base with me.

Here's some info from them:

After an extensive world tour, popular contemporary composer Yanni returns to the United States with a new show An Evening with Yanni, coming to the Louisville Palace on Saturday, April 28, 2012 at 8:00 p.m.

Yanni will return to his roots and perform the instrumental hits from legendary live shows that have amazed millions on every continent. Joined on stage by world-class musicians, Yanni will perform the pieces made famous by his shows at the Acropolis in Greece, India’s Taj Mahal, the Forbidden City in China and the Royal Albert Hall in London. The live show will also feature music from Yanni’s newest album Truth of Touch. Now platinum in the Middle East, the compilation of original studio music is the composer’s first in almost a decade.

Reserved Seat Tickets are On Sale Now: $89.50 / $69.50 / $59.50 / $49.50 / $39.50

I always associate Yanni with my dabbling in New Age-y stuff in the 90's. But he's also a huge humanitarian and involved with lots of global events like the Olympics and, according to Wikipedia, is the widely considered the biggest fundraiser for PBS. 

What do YOU associate Yanni with? Tell me to be entered in the drawing to win TWO tickets to "An Evening With Yanni." You can email me the answer at with the words "I want to see Yanni" in the subject line or comment below. I will choose one random commenter or emailer on Thursday 4/26.  Good luck!

Friday, April 20, 2012

PSA: Don't Be a Thunder-Lover-Shamer

I am not a Thunder Over Louisville fan. I "get" Thunder-lovers. Occasionally, the sight of expertly-flown fighter jets dancing in the skies over the city makes me go all Lee Greenwood inside. How can it not? It's an art. It's a talent. It's dangerous and beautiful. And how can you not admire the brave patriots who fly those planes?

But the air show makes me squidgy. So much money goes into all that. And fuel and other resources. And the celebration of instruments of war and destruction?... I'm not really cool with that. And certainly, I can't help but ache for those Louisvillagers who have at one point in their lives lived somewhere where the sound of a fighter jet overhead was not the sound of celebration or martial artistry but the sound of immanent peril.

Lord knows, as someone who was one of the first groups of people to return to New Orleans after the mandatory evacuation, post-Katrina, I was-- for years-- wigged out by the sound of low-flying helicopters. I still kind of am.

And fireworks at close range have always made me edgy.

I'm not a Thunder-hater, but I'm not a Thunder Over Louisville fan, either. I could absolutely do without it.

But you know what I like LEAST about Thunder? All the Thunder-Lover-Shamers.

It's the day before Thunder Over Louisville, and this is about the time when the Thunder-Lover-Shamers start rearing their ugly heads. They pop up on Twitter or Facebook. They emerge among your co-workers. They start troll-posting on the CJ website.

Their primary goal: to make people who genuinely enjoy Thunder feel terrible about their love for this event.

Listen, it's totally fine with me if you hate Thunder. As I said, I'm mostly in your camp. But it's not okay to, once a year, express your hatred of Thunder by deriding and shaming those people who truly love it. If you have serious moral objections to Thunder Over Louisville, then you should be working ALL YEAR LONG to somehow ban and/or improve what happens during this Derby season opener.

I don't know if it's the same people, but Thunder-Lover-Shamers are the same beasts as Awards-Show-Lover-Shamers or Football-Lover-Shamers. The people who tweet during the Emmys: "I don't know who Julie Bowen is or what she is wearing... Thank God! Curled up with the latest Jonathan Safran Foer and my cat."

Love what you want to love, and let other people get their giggles from whatever it is that tickles their toes. Thunder-Lover-Shaming makes you sound like a jerk.

In the immortal words of Bill & Ted, "Be Excellent To Each Other."

Party on, dudes.

And want to watch the finale of Thunder 2009 from my back yard? Check this out (bonus, for those of you who don't know me, you get to hear the dulcet tone of my voice). Thunder from my back yard

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

WHO'S IN TOWN?: KY State Rabbit Breeders Association Kentucky Cup

MINI-BUNNY (click photo for source)
For the second installment of Loueyville's new series WHO'S IN TOWN? the more important answer to the question is this:

BUNNIES!! Lots and lots of sweet, little, cute, cuddly, soft, fuzzy bunny rabbits. These aren't even your run-of-the-mill cutie-patootie bunnies-- these are champion bunnies. These are gold-medal-worthy bunnies.

What a soothing, delightful alternative to the sometimes nerve-jangling Thunder over Louisville airshow, huh? Go out to the fair grounds and see some bunnies? Sounds like a good plan to me.

The Kentucky Cup is from 8am-4pm and is open to the public at the West Pavilion of the Expo Center.

I had some questions about the Kentucky Cup, and Christy Frey-- vice-president of the Kentucky State Rabbit Breeders Association was nice enough to answer them.

LOU: The Expo Center's calendar lists the event as the "Kentucky State Mini Rabbit Breeders Convention." And that confused me. I assumed it was a convention of "mini-rabbit" breeders. But from your website I take it to mean it's a "mini-convention." Can you clear this up for me? Also, there is such things as mini-rabbits, right?

CHRISTY FREY: You are correct about the name. It is the KSRBA Mini Convention. We are also calling it the Kentucky Cup. The smallest breed of rabbit is the Netherland Dwarf and Brititannia Petite. Their maximum weight is 2 1/2 lbs. The largest rabbits are the Flemish Giants, Giant Angoras, French Lops and Checkered Giants. Their maximum weight can be over 20 lbs.

What goes on during the Convention? Can you give us a brief overview of the event?

During the show, American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA) sanctioned judges will be judging one breed at a time to see which rabbit is the closest to that breeds standard. There is 47 unique breeds recognized by the ARBA. Hopefully we will have many of these breeds at the show. These 47 breeds are distinguished by color, size, and many other characteristics.

How many breeders do you expect? How many rabbits? 

We do not have an exact number, but we are expecting many rabbits and exhibitors from many different states.

Why did you choose Louisville for this event?

We chose Louisville for the location. It is centrally located in KY and has I-64 & I-65. Also the fairgrounds has an excellent facility. We have been advertising the Thunder over Louisville and other tours of famous places around Louisville for the exhibitors to look into doing. The show will be starting at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. It should run late into the afternoon.

Welcome to town Rabbit breeders (and more importantly, your RABBITS!!)! Enjoy Louisville. The KSRBA website is here:

Want to know more about the WHO'S IN TOWN? series on Loueyville? Click here. Our last installment was about Handbell Ringers. Read that here.

Monday, April 16, 2012

This American Life: Live Broadcast to Local Theatres

You know what I love about Louisville?  (your almost-correct response: "Everything, Lou?")

Well yeah, almost everything.

But one of those things that I big time love is how much we Louisvillagers all love our public radio. Seriously, sometimes I'll be on the Twitter, and I will see a Tweet from someone I perceive to be... well, not an NPR nerd... proclaiming his bro-crush on Peter Sagal, and I'll be floored!

And yes. People stereotype you on Twitter just like they stereotype you in real life. Like the guy who puts his sunglasses "at rest" on the back of his head??  (THIS IS NEVER OKAY, PEOPLE!! NEVER!!! [confession "that guy" just walked into the coffeeshop])  He probably doesn't listen to "Stereolab," right?

That's neither here nor there.

Point being, I expect that the May 10 This American Life live broadcast at Stonybrook and at Tinseltown will probably sell out fast.  From the TAL website:

We're thrilled to announce that on Thursday, May 10th, 2012, we will perform an episode of This American Life on stage in New York City and beam it live via satellite to more than 500 movie theatres around the country! We did a show like this in 2009, and were blown away when 50,000 people came out to see it. A lot of you have asked us if we'll be doing it again.

So yeah, we're doing it again!

The show will feature stories by Ira Glass, writer David Rakoff, comic Tig Notaro and Snap Judgment host Glynn Washington, plus live music by OK Go. It'll also include things you could never do on the radio, like a new short film by Mike Birbiglia, dance by Monica Bill Barnes & Company, original animation, projected illustration and more. Plus special surprise guests.

Ira writes:
I saw this amazing dance performance by Monica Bill Barnes' company, and I thought - that is totally in the style of our radio show. But obviously you can't have dance on the radio. Then I realized, we have to do another cinema event! We've built this lineup of stories mixed with super visual things, including the dancers I saw, so it's going to feel like the radio show but also totally unlike anything we've done before. I really can't wait to see how it turns out.

Live on Thursday, May 10th at 8:00pm ET/7:00pm CT (tape delayed to 7:00pm MT/ 8:00pm PT).

Friday, April 13, 2012

Le Petomane Does Derby

The first article I wrote for The Paper is probably still my favorite. Not only did it introduce me to the always-fantastic Le Petomane Theatre Ensemble's work, it also led to me getting to know six really great people who I now count as friends. (Awww... yeah, there's all kinds of awww going on here.)

But I became a fan before I became a friend.

Speaking of the Paper, have you picked up this month's Derby issue?  If you have, then you know that the Le Petomane folks don't need to be on stage to be funny... and that they know their Derby.

Their next show throws A Christmas Carol, Hunter S. Thompson, and local Derby lore and legends into a blender-- what comes out is a Gonzo, satirical roast of the entire Derby season.

Unfortunately I missed the WFPK Live Lunch preview of three of the songs, but Roommate listened in while he was in Portland, OR (yay, interwebs!), and he said it was fantastic. I had an in-person preview of Kyle Ware's song. The name escapes me right now, and I am totally NOT going to email him and ask him what it was called because I was singing it for DAYS. Serious earworm there.

This is the last show of the 2011-2012 season for Le Petomane, and what a great season it was (you can read all my posts about Le Petomane's season here). It's going to take one hell of a show, though, for this one to top the amazing 5 THINGS-- which was not only my favorite thing I've seen from Le Petomane, but also goes on my list of top ten favorite theatre experiences ever. Yeah... that good.

A DERBY CAROL runs from April 19-29 (no show on the 24th) at 730p at the Bard's Town. For reservations (recommended!) call 502-609-2520 or email Yes, there's a show the night of Thunder. Yes, people have already reserved for that night.  And on April 23, Le Petomane will participate in World Book Night. Because they're book nerds. And we love them for it.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Drink Wine for a Good Cause

Like we need a good reason to have a nice glass of wine...

But now Apple Patch and Westport Wine & Whiskey is giving us one.

The Hat Affair Pre-show is Thursday, April 12 at 6pm. For $5 you can taste wines, preview fancy Derby hats, and purchase raffle tickets. A portion of that $5 also goes to support the good work at Apple Patch.

Diego Garcia Returns to Louisville!

Love this photo from METROMIX
Grumble, grumble... *stink-eye*

I'm still none-too-pleased with the folks over at Zanzabar, but it's very difficult to get around the fact that they're my favorite music venue in town. Oh... and TATER TOTS. Of course.


And there's no getting around the fact that Zanzabar is the only place to catch the return of Diego Garcia this weekend.

Garcia is once again headlining a night of music on April 14 at 9pm-- just five months after his last show at Zbar. I went to the last show, and it was pretty fabulous.  Just yesterday I was in the car listening to WFPK, and a song came on the radio, and I thought, "Why do I love this song so much? The moment it came on I was slammed by a wave of happiness." Turns out-- Diego Garcia song.  Great music. Nice guy. Chatted briefly with Diego after the show, and he gave me the softest t-shirt... hey, the little things count when you're a starving blogger.

Anyway, I emailed Diego a few questions about his upcoming show.  Here are his responses:

LOU: You're playing Louisville during the craziest time of the year in Louisville... the build-up to Derby. What are your impressions of the Kentucky Derby? Decadent and depraved or stately genteel tradition? Something in between?

DIEGO: All of the above. Tradition is beautiful especially when it's part of the land. Crowds are scary.

LOU: You last played Zanzabar on December 10. We're so happy to have you coming back so soon. What was your experience like atZanzabar and in Louisville? Did you have any time to hit the town at all? Did you get to eat at Zanzabar? Did you have their famous tater tots?

DIEGO: Zanzabar is beautiful. It's real. Again, another iconic building and location. The food was also unreal but this time i will make sure to eat after the show and not before! And yes, the tater tots are the real reason were coming back to Louisville

LOU: Lindi Ortega opened for you last time you were here. Wow. Who can we look forward to seeing open for you in April?

DIEGO: Not sure yet but Rumor has it the band "the tater tots" are opening.

LOU: For those of us who went to the show in December, what new can we expect this time around?

DIEGO: A few new songs I'm working on in the studio. Neil youngs harvest moon has also made its way into the show. As well as a new petty song. It's all cool.

How nice of a guy is Diego? He (or his peeps, rather) sent along a free download for you!  Here's "Roses & Wine," folks!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Another Beautiful Infographic from DBS Interactive

Once again DBS Interactive has come up with a gorgeous, Louisville-oriented infographic. This one is all about the Derby.  Ostensibly, it is an ad for Derby Supply Chain Solutions, but wow... so much fun! I did not know, for example, that the Kentucky Derby could have easily ended up being the Kentucky Bunbury! 12,000 Mint Juleps on Derby Day? Awesome.

Their last infographic push "Why Louisville Is Awesome" was very popular and went viral quickly. Check out this one and learn all kinds of minutiae that will impress your peers and colleagues at Kentucky Derby Events!

Broadway Across America: BLUE MAN GROUP

Unless you've been living in a cave for the past twenty-odd years (and if you have been living in a cave, good on ya! I hope you at least have wifi!), you've probably heard of The Blue Man Group.  Hopefully, if the world has been kind to you, you've even actually seen the Blue Man Group-- if not live then on television on in one of the documentaries made about the performance group.

I was lucky enough to catch pretty much the original show in 1991 at Astor Place Theatre in NYC. And the first time I attended (after that first time, I took just about every out-of-town visitor who came to town to see them), I was one of the audience "volunteers." They brought me on-stage and made me unwrap and eat a Twinkie-- and then white goo shot out of a spout on a vest they'd put on me. It was HI-LAR-IOUS! (Yeah, you're gonna have to trust me on that one).

I am so super excited to be seeing the Blue Man Group again tonight.  Once again, Broadway Across America brings a little of NYC to Louisville. The show runs through April 15. I promise you, if you go, you will laugh. Hard. And may tinkle yourself a little (but that's okay, there's usually lots of toilet paper involved in the show... I'm serious).

And if my brilliant description of the show isn't quite doing it for you, here's the Q&A from their website:


Blue Man Group centers on three human(ish) men who have blue heads and no ears. They don’t speak and, in fact, utter not one sound. But look at their faces long enough and you can detect the faintest hint of curiosity and wonder, like when gazing at audience members’ cell phones and Blackberrys as if they were objects from outer space. The ultimate mission of the Blue Men is to share with us their own interesting gadgets, like their sci-fi drum kits and LED-screen thought balloons. Just prepare yourself when they break out the Cap ‘n Crunch and toilet paper.


What Is Blue Man Group Like?
If the description above didn’t tip you off, Blue Man Group is not plot-driven and has only the slightest thread of a storyline. It is, however, an incredibly entertaining spectacle that incorporates high-tech stage effects, old-fashioned comedy and even a bit of circus-style mime and clowning. As interactive as theater gets, the first few rows come equipped with ponchos and plastic coverings, so audience members can shield themselves from food, paint and whatever other substances fly off the stage. Surely the Blue Men are saying something about life, technology and the failure to communicate. Then again, you might just walk out thinking, “Dude that was way cool!”

Is Blue Man Group Good for Kids?
Yes, by all means. These men don’t speak, hence they don’t even come close to using any bad language, making rude gestures or anything else that might be considered unsuitable subject matter for your children. Fact is, if the Blue Men simply walked onstage and did nothing, kids could busy themselves for hours just looking at their faces. That these guys also roll out many a space-age bell and whistle makes the show an experience kids will never forget. Adults won’t, either.
Tickets available here: Broadway Across America-- Louisville.

Monday, April 9, 2012

LAST MINUTE POST: 24hr Theatre Festival

Sorry folks, usually I am more on the ball about cool stuff that's happening at Actors Theatre. But come on, it's Monday night... you didn't have plans anyway, right?

Tonight at the Rudyard Kipling The Actors Theatre Apprentice/Intern company presents their 24 Hour Theatre Festival, for which they stay up all night crafting ten-minute plays, start rehearsal at 10am and produce the show at 8pm.

I'm in. Not just because I'm a sucker for 10-minute plays and theatre experiments, but this is seriously the best group of Apprentice/Interns I've seen at ATL. They'll be leaving us soon, so I'm going to take every opportunity I can to see them.

What: 7 playwrights, 5 directors and 16 actors team up to produce five killer 10-minute plays in less than one day.

When: Monday, April 9 @ 8pm

Where: The Rudyard Kipling (422 W Oak St)

Cost: Pay-What-You-Can

Coming up next week: the New Voices Theatre Festival on April 17 & 18.  More on that soon.  

WHO'S IN TOWN? Handbell Ringers April 12-15

When I saw that the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers Area V Spring Festival-- aka "Bellebration"-- was coming to Louisville next weekend, my little head went kablooey! What the...? Who ARE these people? How can there be such a thing? I was delighted... "delighted"doesn't even begin to cover it. I am endlessly fascinated with people who are devoted to obscure things.

I immediately hit their website and read up on their many competitions, scholarships, youth initiatives. And the idea for this new series-- WHO'S IN TOWN?-- was born. Because if the handbell ringers had come and gone and I was none the wiser... I would have been bummed out.

And honestly, who knows how obscure the handbells really are? This season on the Zooey Deschanel show "The New Girl" an entire episode centered around a handbell competition. Maybe Zooey can do for the handbells what other Manic Pixie Dream Girls have gone for the ukulele.

I fired off an email to the Handbell Ringers to see if I could find out more about the upcoming Bellebration, and I got this fantastic response from Area 5 Secretary, Wendy Ransom.  

LOU: What goes on during Bellebration? Can you give us a brief overview of the event? 

WENDY: Bellebration is a handbell festival hosted by Area 5 of Handbell Musicians of America (There are 12 areas that make up the national organization).  Area 5 covers a five state area-Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky and West Virginia. Handbell choirs from all over the 5 states will gather in Louisville for a 2 day event featuring a combination of massed rehearsals and hands-on classes on various handbell techniques. Approximately 400 musicians are expected.

The event has two levels of handbell musicians. Tins who perform generally easier music and Coppers who perform more complex or difficult music. Each group has 2 unique pieces they perform on their own and then 3 pieces for the entire massed choir. The groups rotate through divisional rehearsal, massed rehearsal and then time in classes. Classes include topics such as, basic ringing technique, high bell technique including four in hand, bass bell technique, musicality, handbells in worship, and others. (note- bells range in size from approximately 2" in diameter weighing less than a pound to approximately 11" in diameter and weighing 11lbs. Different sizes have different techniques.)

Why did you choose Louisville? 

We aim to rotate the annual festivals around the 5 state area to make them accessible to members. We host 2 each spring and aim to host them in areas in opposite locations. Our other festival this year was held in Akron, Ohio on March 16 & 17. It is also a bit about price and what any given city has to offer in a convention center. The event is short. It begins on Friday at 4 and is over by 6pm on Saturday. Having dining options in the vicinity of a convention center is important due to the need for 400 people to get out, eat, and get back to the event in a relatively short amount of time. It is also nice to have an entertaining city for those who opt to stay over Saturday night and return home on Sunday.

Aside from your Bellebration events, what are you most looking forward to doing while you're in town? 

It has been a number of years since we hosted our event in Lousiville so we are looking forward to heading to a different city and a generally bigger one than our usual venues.

Are there any events associated with Bellebration that the public can attend? 

Yes our closing concert is open to the public. It is at 5:30pm on Saturday the 14th at the Kentucky International Convention Center. The concert will run approximately one hour. Seating is general seating and our concerts are usually well attended.

You can learn more about the guild at and more specifically about Area 5


I'm all about celebrating the awesomeness that is native to this under-appreciated city. But let's face it, we still have a little bit of an "image problem" when it comes to people who've never been here before.

When I was first brought to Louisville for a job interview, I-- no joke, no hyperbole-- was kind of hoping I would break my leg or something before the flight. I was certain I didn't want to move to Louisville and was kicking myself for even accepting the interview (hmmm... maybe I could break my leg by kicking myself?). My future employer made the mistake of housing me at a (very nice) hotel out by the Mall of St. Matthew and not giving me a car. I got to the hotel, called Roommate, and whined about how dreadful Louisville was.

The interview went well (obviously), and I dug the school and the kids. But when it came to the final interview of the day, I pretty much told my future boss exactly how awful I thought Louisville was. His response: "Oh God, no! Shelbyville Road is NOT Louisville"-- he promptly got on the phone and rented me a car, took me to dinner at Asiatique, and pointed me in the direction of Bardstown Road and Frankfort Ave.

We all know how that story ended.

So the other day when the Guy passed along an email from the Louisville Convention and Visitors' Bureau that lists all of the conventions and gatherings that are headed our way, I got really excited.

Lookit all these people who could potentially share my Louisville-conversion experience!  Lookit all these people who could fall in love and spread the good word of Louisville!

So I decided to start a new series highlighting some of the more interesting folks that are headed our way. I am so super excited about the first in the series: The American Handbell Ringers of Area 5. As soon as I decided to write this series I shot off an email interview to the Handbell ringers, and they got back to me in less than six hours.

Part of the point of this series is to give YOU Louisvillagers information about public aspects of these gatherings that YOU could attend-- for example, the Handbell Ringers give a public concert.  It's something fun and interesting for you to do AND, it gives YOU the opportunity to rub elbows with and spread the good word about Louisville to some out-of-towners.  Make sure you tell them to enjoy downtown, but to also get out into the neighborhoods. Send them to NULU. Send them to Bardstown Road. Send them to restaurants that aren't TGIFridays and Starbucks.

Let's all be Louisville evangelists!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Fund Drive Fun Times!

Once again it is fund drive time at Louisville Public Media. And for the second drive in a row, I'll be answering phones with some Loueyville blog readers and friends.

I can't possibly give Louisville Public Media what they're worth to me in hard cash (maybe next year when I have a big, fancy, high-paying job... a girl can dream), so volunteering and asking my readers to volunteer and pledge are just two little ways I can help make up the difference.

So give us a call-- we're working the late shift Thursday from 8p-11p. We're the only ones on the schedule, so if you call to pledge, you'll be talking to me or one of my readers!  I know! Fancy!

Or, if you're shy, you can pledge online here:

Call us at 502-814-6565. We'd love to talk to you!

Support public media and the wonderful people who work there!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Finnegan's Festival of Funky Fresh Fun #5

How cute is this poster? (apparently this is for a play called "Death Hamster" and that makes it even more awesome...)

Last year was the year I finally got around to "discovering" Le Petomane Theatre Ensemble, so this year might be the year that I finally "discover" Finnigan's.

I sure do love ten-minute plays-- still trying to finish the one I started writing last year after Humana Festival. (This year's TENS at Humana Festival were particularly awesome).  I should probably consume as many ten-minute plays as I can.... you know, for research.

Here's what's on tap for this year's 5th Funky Fresh Fun:

 Finnigan’s Festival of Funky Fresh Fun’s plays include:  A coffee shop fantasy set to music in Playlist by Kate Barry.  A bank robbery split three ways in Stick-up by Zachary Burrell.  The heiress to a chocolate fortune and an ex-hockey star find themselves in an awkward predicament in The Chocolate Girl by David Clark.  Memories are hard things to throw away in Toast by Tad Chitwood.  Need someone who listens?  Need someone who cares?  Just call the On Call Empathy Team by Sarah East.  Aristophanes’ love life gets some revisions in Greek Tragedy by Andy Epstein.  Things are not what they seem, or maybe they are in Mitch Field’s Life is But a Dream.  Digging up dead bodies isn’t always easy, but Nick and Corey still try and have a good time in Nick and Corey Grave Rob by Nick Potter and Corey Music.  Show tune sing-a-longs are the least of these ladies’ problems in Women Who Love Gay Men by Brian Walker.  The mystery of the dead hamster has so many possibilities in Death Hamster! by Bryce Woodard.

The festival runs on April 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, and 14 at 730pm at the Bard's Town Theatre-- tickets are $15.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

I am a Woman, and I love Nerd Culture: Zanzabar


Yeah, I know I normally try to steer clear of expletives on this relatively family-friendly blog, but trust me, that's the most mild expletive I can come up with to describe my frustration.

Few things irk me more than when I go to bat for a person, an organization, what-have-you... only to turn around and realize that they've failed in some other, major, egregious way.

In my last blog post, I went to bat for Zanzabar over the idiocy that blew up in response to their (brief) decision to invite only U of L fans to view the game last Saturday. I defended their choice. And I said:

Zanzabar is my favorite place to see live music.  Their food is awesome. Fabulous beer selection. And best of all: TATER TOTS!! I'm totally looking forward to seeing Diego Garcia there again in a couple of weeks (April 14). I am sending the folks at Zbar my very best wishes for a NOT STUPID game day. I really hope that all this shizz is a bunch of online troll bluster. And I hope all this bluster doesn't scare people away from a great venue to watch the game. Godspeed, Zanzabarers!

This evening, the Guy and I were chit-chatting about said flare-up, and he mentioned that one of his female friends was a little bit pleased that Zanzabar was catching some sh*t about something because she was disgusted by their most recent LEO WEEKLY ad.

I had no idea what he was talking about.

But a little noodling on his iPhone produced this image promoting their pinball tournament. (The Guy, who was recently called "the funniest actor in Louisville" said, "But see... you couldn't even play pinball with her straddling the machine like that. She's covering up the bumpers.")

No, I'm not going to import it to the blog. I don't want that crap to grace these pages.

Seriously, Zanzabar? What the holy hell?

I am a woman, and I love nerd culture. And one of the many things I love about Zanzabar is all the nerdy shizz that they engage in. The vintage video games. The pinball tournaments. The spelling bees. The 70's promotional posters for Louisville that grace their walls.

But when they bust out the ugliest, most stereotypical pandering to nerd-dom, they've lost me.

I don't play pinball. But that's not because I am a woman. It's because I was born hand-eye-coordination challenged and that has been complicated by the lingering neuropathy associated with my chemo treatments a few years back. I wish I could play pinball. I wish I could play video games (although, I am secretly glad I can't... I'm just obsessive enough that I could see me getting so sucked in that my "real life" would suffer).

With this ad, Zanzabar is saying "'we assume that most of our players are [heterosexual twenty-something-year-old dudes], so we're not even going to pretend we care about anyone else.' That sucks. That's a problem. And that's what needs to start changing."

The quotes there are because I am quoting a particularly awesome episode of MovieBob's "The Big Picture" vlog called GENDER GAMES. The battle between feminists and nerd culture has been visited and revisted ad infinitum. And maybe I am biased because MovieBob is my cousin, but I think his take on it is particularly brilliant (embedded left).

Zanzabar-ers-- Stop it. Just effing stop it. Gender-ing a game as basic as pinball is lousy and cheap. Why is it that twenty-something-year-old hipsters these days seem to be as misogynistic as my sixty-something-year-old uncles?